Jamie Boder recently joined the Yoga for Arthritis team serving as the Social Media & Digital Marketing Specialist. In this post, he shares his yoga journey from practitioner to teacher.
I discovered yoga when I was 18. At the time I was diagnosed with two auto-immune conditions, Crohn’s Disease and Axial Spondyloarthritis (AS is an inflammatory form of arthritis). I (reluctantly) attended a support group: it was an overwhelming experience, where a lot of the people there had visible signs of degeneration but then there was Geoff... A yoga practitioner of 45 years who showed how a consistent practice had meant he was able to maintain mobility and a great quality of life. This was a lightbulb moment as it provided hope and empowerment. That evening I realised I wanted to dedicate myself to this practice. I immersed myself in yoga. I practiced consistently every day and a year later the improvements were huge- more mobility, less pain, and more acceptance of living with arthritis.
The yoga practice itself provided me with so much, yet I grew increasingly frustrated with the mainstream narrative and perception of yoga. I was left feeling deflated but determined to ensure my classes would seek to never exclude anyone and make any feel less than accepted, respected, and empowered. I became especially fascinated with making yoga more accessible for people living with arthritis.
After my first yoga practice, I had a vision that one day I would love to share my practice with other people who have arthritis and give to empower. Five years on I co-founded Yoga for AS (www.yogaforas.com ) alongside Geoff, as mentioned above: a friend and inspiration who also lives with AS. Yoga for AS is an organisation that provides modified yoga for people living with AS.
I aim to make all my classes as accessible as possible. I teach: Hatha, Vinyasa, Yin, Yoga Nidra and Restorative.
You can connect with me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Or my business Yoga for AS on Instagram @yogaforas