Hi, my name is Traci Williams, and I live in Montreal, Canada. I was born with CMT 1A, diagnosed as a child (now in my 50s), and was told I would be permanently in a wheelchair by the age of 20. At 19, I was introduced to yoga and realized I had been meditating naturally on my own about a decade before that. Initially, having a Type A personality, yoga bored me, but my body, even with pain, wanted to do it… and I listened. I have been teaching since 2011 and now have over 500 hours of related training, including in-depth anatomy and physiology. I personally believe strongly in the mind-body-and-spirit connection, so my favorite yoga is Kundalini yoga along with yoga Nidra.
Kundalini yoga is a holistic yoga that incorporates repetitive physical movement and sometimes static postures timed with breathwork, chanting, meditation, and relaxation. It is believed to work directly on the nervous system, glands, and chakra system (the body’s energy centers, which largely correspond with the plexuses—bundles of nerves along the spinal cord).
Yoga Nidra is a form of relaxation that brings you to a state between meditation and sleep, tapping into the body’s own healing energy.
After doing what most of us know as yoga for years, I took my first Kundalini yoga class in 2001. My initial reaction was, oh, that is so weird, but my body wanted more. Over the years, I have taught many yoga types to many types of students, including teenagers in wheelchairs at a rehabilitation center to women dealing with trauma, depression, and anxiety through a mental health association. Kundalini yoga is not a panacea, but for my own life, it has helped with body and thought awareness, flexibility, strength, balance, perspective, and to celebrate small victories. Given I myself have physical limitations, I have been able to adapt various postures for different levels and different restrictions.
I am looking forward to sharing this type of yoga with you. It is a chance to go “inside,” learn about yourself, feel the benefits of movement, and take some self-care time.
Feel free to ask me questions or let me know any concerns. As well, check out the Webinar on Kundalini yoga and yoga Nidra on Thursday, April 8, at 7 p.m. (EST) to find out more. Classes will follow the next week, Thursdays at 4:30 p.m. (EST)