Instructor Spotlight: Laura McCorry

Hi, there! In honor of Yoga One Blog’s first birthday, we’re checking in with blog writer and yoga teacher, Laura McCorry. Usually behind the scenes writing and organizing blog posts, Laura also leads a Gentle Flow class at Yoga One on Thursday nights at 7:45pm. It’s the latest class on the schedule, but it’s the perfect yoga nightcap – including a forehead massage during savasana. Check out our full schedule here, no reservations required.

1. What is your favorite style of yoga?

My favorite style of yoga varies with the seasons, time of day and my energy level. I love a quiet restorative practice whenever life gets overwhelming and an energetic Vinyasa flow for those days when you just need to move and sweat!

2. What first attracted you to yoga when you began your practice?

I started practicing yoga during a very stressful time in my life when I was anxious during the day and having nightmares every night. I’d tried going to a meditation class but the chaos inside my head only increased. Someone told me that yoga was a moving meditation with the eyes open, so I went to a class at my local gym. Even during that first savasana, I felt glimpses of the peace that comes with practice.

For me, the best part about practicing yoga as a new student was that I needed to pay attention to my breath and the way my body moved. I’d never done that before and it was very challenging! The unique combination of breath and movement turned out to be the key to releasing the frenetic energy of my thoughts.

3. What is your favorite yoga pose right now?

Restorative twist with a bolster or folded blankets. (Shout out: Missy often includes this pose in her 4pm Restorative class on Fridays.) This pose is super relaxing for my body, I have to be careful not to fall asleep! I find that my mind is quietest when my gaze is down or to the side rather than straight up – so for me, this pose is often more peaceful than savasana.

4. What pose is still the most challenging?

I thought about answering with wheel or handstand but seriously, one of the poses that challenges me the most is chair. It’s never easy, never comfortable and always a struggle to remember to breathe. I’m the first person to stand up in tadasana or fold forward when it’s over.

5. If you were an animal, you would be: a cat. I almost always know my own mind and I’ll often ask for advice from others and then do exactly what I’d been planning all along. I think cats are contrary that way. Also, they’re very wise: they know you don’t need to work too hard in life in order to be happy and that’s a philosophy I can get behind.

6. Describe what yoga means in your life using just 6 words: peace, healing, challenge, strength, joy, prayer 

7. What might your students be surprised to learn about you?

I went to university to study French and desperately wanted to be a high school French teacher after graduation but it wasn’t meant to be. Enrolling in a yoga teacher training course and learning to teach yoga (another passion) soothed my soul and gave me a new purpose. My students might also be surprised to learn that my first job was at a Harley Davidson dealership.

8. Do you have any words of wisdom or advice for new students?

Yoga can be so many things: exercise, stress-relief, spiritual connection – soak up what resonates with you and let the rest go. Do what feels good in your body and don’t be afraid to modify. Never compromise your physical well-being for the sake of keeping up with the class. With that in mind, be sure to challenge yourself: hold a pose longer, take that stretch a little deeper, try out the scary arm balance. The biggest challenge any yoga student faces is simply showing up to class. 🙂

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