Meet the Yogi behind our Instagram posts and phone calls.
At ASY, we love supporting our community and talk to our members about their experience with us. It has been few months now since we have Catalina on our team, helping around the studio with phone calls and social media posts. We thought it is time to give her some credit and introduce her journey to our community properly!
Catalina Gonzalez is 33 years old, she moved from Colombia to Melbourne ten years ago. Catalina is a very active Yogi that also practices surfing, weight lifting and dancing. Catalina is a former scientist that currently working in client and social media management. She was first introduced to Yoga while practicing with me at a local gym where I was teaching five years ago!
Do you want to hear what Catalina has to say on Yoga, her own practice and her experience with us? Read through for the full interview I conducted with her last week!
Q: Hello Catalina! So tell us what brought you to Yoga?
A: I started practicing about 6 years ago because I was actually quite ill with chronic fatigue from work. Being a scientist I was doing research 24/7… I would spend a whole night working and it was just too much! My doctor suggested Yoga and meditation as I was only allowed to do light exercise with my condition. It really healed me! Since then, Yoga really became a lifestyle for me: even if I don’t always stick to regular practice of postures, I am a dedicated follower of the philosophy of Yoga.
Q: So what is your practice routine now, 6 years into the journey?
A: I come to the studio whenever I can, at least twice a week. Otherwise, I try to practice every day at home, at least 15 minutes. When at home, I practice online or trying to remember what I did in class last time and repeat it. I started from more gentle styles but by now I also really enjoy flow classes. I wish I could practice more than I do but life gets in the way…
I do meditate every day, it is such a big part of my life! If I don’t do it, I feel like something is missing… Even on the train or while brushing my teeth, I just try to find stillness.
Q: That is a lot for your busy lifestyle. Well done! What is your favourite pose to practice?
A: I love doing the wheel pose! It makes my back feel very relaxed afterwards.
When I was a kid, I used to do it all the time naturally without knowing it is a Yoga pose. Then once I was re-introduced to it in Yoga and a teacher showed it to me, I thought it was great because to me it came naturally. It makes me feel amazing, like all of my back releases tension.
I would also love to do more inversions and head stands. I follow all of these people on Instagram and wish I could do the same! I need to work on my upper body strength. In strength training I always push with my arms and don’t do enough pulling… I feel that for Yoga I need to use different muscles!
Q: Well we can definitely help you with that in our weekly Power classes where we focus on strength and more challenging poses. And Yes, Yoga has the ability to remind you of muscles you didn’t know existed!
Tell us what brought you to our studio in particular.
A: I remember I was following the studio on Instagram and I really liked it because it gave me the feeling of a community oriented place; there were a lot of pictures of people practicing together and assisting each other into the poses. But I didn’t realise then that it was you – one of my first teachers! And then when you put up the ad for a studio assistant it clicked in my mind that it is you… and I used to love the classes with you on Tuesdays at 7 and then I was so happy and wanted to be on your team!
Without knowing, my Yoga journey started with you and it is kind of mesmerising that we reconnected again while then you used to teach me in a big class without even knowing me.
Now I really love what you do: it feels like family, like everyone know each other, everyone are super friendly… As much as I loved going to your gym class, it didn’t feel like a community. You used to have classes packed with 30 people and there was not much opportunity to connect. Now it feels like you come to see your friends. I love helping you because I really relate myself to your brand and find you very inspiring!
Q: Geez I got myself a bundle of compliments out of this one, haven’t I? Thank you so much for your kind words Catalina! It is great to have you on our team of authentic Yogis. Is there anything else you would like to say to our readers?
A: If you have been thinking of doing Yoga, just go for it! It might be a bit overwhelming and you might be worried that you are not flexible enough, or not going to succeed as well as other people you see on social media. But it is not true, you don’t need to be flexible or strong to do Yoga – the journey will give you that eventually. It is really life changing. I never looked back on this decision and I think everyone should have this amazing practice in their lives.
Thank you Catalina for inspiring our community!
Loved this interview and want to come practice with us too?
Join us at our beautiful studio in Prahran for daily practice.