Mighty Yogi of the Month: February 2017


Name: Julie Carmalt

Favorite yoga pose: Ardha Chandrasana because some days it eludes me and some days I feel as if I’m soaring!

Yoga is... HOME. Though I’ve been practicing yoga for nearly 20 years, I can still break down and cry during class when I feel completely, deeply, connectedly present – home in my own heart, mind, body – surrounded by the beautiful energy of others.
How do you serve the world?
I would like to think, whether advising my Cornell students or teaching stand up paddleboard yoga on Cayuga Lake, that I am capable of creating empowering experiences that help others find the courage and grace to find and follow their True path.

What do you love most about your yoga practice?
Sometimes, when I feel anxious or like an imposter, yoga reminds me to take a step back and remember that all I have to do in any given moment is just breathe, and just BE yoga. Open-hearted, standing tall, breathing, present.

What fuels you?
I’ll be 50 this year and I still just want to play and be dorky. I hope I remain dorky for the rest of my days.

My NON-guilty pleasure is... coffee dates with my husband (with a slab of chocolate cake).

What makes you Mighty?
I’m an introvert who seeks community. I am grateful for my 24-inch x 72-inch piece of rubber yoga mat that helps me find community wherever I go!

What’s your yoga story?  How did you start practicing?
I started practicing yoga simply because my local gym was sold to a new owner who started offering yoga classes during my usual step aerobics class time. I admit I was irritated at first but then immediately fell in love. I remember I could barely get my back toes off the mat and couldn’t straighten my standing leg in Virabhadrasana III (arms stiff down by my standing ankle lest I fall) and my instructor asked us to just be where we were with no judgment and it just clicked. I had never considered not judging myself. I had never thought of being self-kind. It was glorious and I was hooked. Though my inner critic can get loud some days, I’m grateful for a practice that centers me and brings me home to a peaceful heart.

If you had a superpower what would it be and why?
Ha, I would be the Grace Fairy and tap the sh#t out of my own head with my magic grace wand!