Rikers Island Yoga



The latest from Rikers…

I teach a hot yoga class on Thursday evenings in Jersey City. There were some familiar faces and a few new ones. While balancing I talked about how falling can be wonderful because it gives us a chance to get back up and try again. 

One of the elevators at RMSC has a mind of its own. It doesn’t stop on the 4th floor going up and sometimes the doors have to close five times before it moves. On the fourth floor I asked if anyone was up for some yoga and meditation. Some said no but mostly I didn’t get a response. So I pulled out a mat and took off my shoes.

I asked again.

Class started with two but ended with seven. Wendy was on but she didn’t have her normal hold on the dorm. We had lots of conversation throughout class. That’s one of the things I love most about teaching at Rikers. There aren’t rules. One student talked about how she was feeling every ounce of the weight she’s gained since being there but was smiles and determined to be present. I offered legs up the wall at the end of class and some wanted to stay where they were with legs lifted in the air. While in meditation with eye pillows over their eyes someone said, “This is the shit.” I laughed.

Yoga is the shit. It’s all of it. It’s being comfortable with the uncomfortable. It’s feeling good in relaxation. It’s about being here right now. Students have me their work schedules to see when possible could I start later so more people can come to class.

When I show up to a dorm and hear no to yoga learned to wait. If I’m patient people come. We are all worth second chances. We are all worth third chances.

It was cloudy this morning on the way into Rikers but all smiles on the 4th floor. Namaste y’all. ‪#‎LiberationPrisonYoga‬ ‪#‎YogaEverywhere‬ ‪#‎Yoga‬


2 thoughts on “Rikers Island Yoga

    1. Thanks! I’m back. Really, really appreciate that. Once you fall off it’s almost scary to come back. Another exercise in mindfulness, fear and ultimately trusting your path. Sat nam.

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