“I remember the day I decided to pursue yoga. I was working in a corporate job at the time, and my close friends and family members advised me against it, saying that it was not a viable career path. But I’m not one to conform to stereotypes or listen to naysayers, so I quit my job and enrolled in a yoga certification program five years ago.
After completing my certification, I wasn’t sure what to do next. I spent my days practising yoga and learning everything I could about the practice. One day, a student approached me for classes, and that was the start of something new. I began teaching more classes and eventually got an opportunity to teach at a studio.
I remember the studio founder telling me about their celebrity clients and how I should teach the classes. I told them that as long as one student enjoyed my class, I would stay. And I did stay, and my classes filled up in no time. The founder even asked me to teach morning classes and weekend classes because of my popularity.
But despite my success, I didn’t feel like I was in the right place. I would come home late and hungry, with not enough money to buy food. When I asked for a raise, my request was declined. I felt undervalued and unappreciated for the amount of work I was doing, so I quit.
It was difficult leaving behind the students I had earned in just a few months, but I knew that I had to take a stand for myself. That’s when I started to have intuitions of myself taking up classes in an open green space. I imagined myself shouting and counting to stand longer in poses, with full energy.
One day, while sitting on the pavement at Besant Nagar, frustrated with life, I shared my idea with a friend. I suggested doing yoga somewhere inside the gaming centre, but my friend suggested asking the management for permission to teach on the rooftop as I dreamt of.
To my surprise, the management agreed, and I went to check out the place. When I saw the green turf, just like the one in my thoughts, I was speechless. I felt like I was exactly where I was meant to be. We started promoting our classes, but the response was slow. I reminded myself that I wouldn’t give up, no matter what.
On launch day, nobody showed up until the class time. I was disappointed, but I told myself that it was just the first day, and we had to wait for the next class. I had to motivate myself to keep going, and I began practising alone on the green turf when I saw a student walking towards the turf to attend my class. That was the beginning of “Chennai’s First Outdoor Yoga Experience” – OYC.
I had finally found my place, teaching yoga in an outdoor space. It was a new beginning, and I was grateful for everything that led me to that moment. From just an intuition to across five prime locations in Chennai now. Trust your gut.”