In our Profiles of a Yogi column, we periodically feature a student in our community, getting up close and personal with them. We hope that you find these stories to be inspiring and uplifting. This month, we share the story of Judy Rambo, a dedicated student who most often attends our weekday evening classes. As you’ll learn in this piece, Judy has many talents and is a joy to have in class.

TYC: How you were first introduced to yoga?
JR: I was first introduced to yoga a long time ago when I was in high school. A friend’s sister was living up in Lake Arrowhead and we stayed with her one summer – hanging out and doing yoga. About 7 years ago, I took the yoga basics class at William’s studio at Chicago Ave and Ridgeland – I have been a beginner yoga student ever since!

TYC: What made you curious enough about yoga to try it out? What was your motivation to practice yoga?
JR: Anyone that knows me, knows that I am not really a fan of “exercise” – I don’t like to run or swim or work out – so they are often surprised that I am actually committed to a yoga practice. I tell them that through yoga I have discovered these amazing opportunities to build strength and flexibility!

TYC: What type of class have you been taking? What do you like about it?
JR: I have taken almost all of the different classes at the Yoga Centre – each teacher brings a unique and meaningful perspective – I feel fortunate that I have these opportunities to “see” yoga in so many ways. When I travel, I always try to take a local class – I love experiencing how every yoga community offers something new and different.

TYC: What benefits have you noticed from your yoga practice? 
JR: I have discovered so many amazing benefits of yoga – from improved awareness of my posture to more importantly the clarity that lasts even after class is over. Yoga has influenced my ability to approach life with a more open heart and helps me breathe through life’s stressors. I definitely cherish my time on my mat. Everyone should try yoga – the best part is that it is your personal practice – you get to take what you need from it – you can make it as physical or as spiritual as you’d like.

TYC: That is so true. Thank you for sharing that — it’s very helpful for students to hear about the experience of others.  Now, tell us a little more about yourself. How do you spend your time when you’re not at the yoga studio?
JR: When not in the yoga studio, I am working as a special education school social worker. Besides yoga, gardening, sewing and reading are my other means of “therapy”.

TYC: The community might enjoy knowing that you are the artist who has made the yoga bags that we offer for sale, as well as the recent new curtains that we put up. Your work is so lovely — we all appreciate it. Tell us more about how you became so skilled with sewing.
JR: I learned to sew in Home Ec class (yes – when I was in junior high school the girls took home ec and the boys took shop class!). My mom also sewed and I learned how to sew on the family black singer sewing machine. In my late 20s, for fun, my best friend and I did a two-year fashion design program where I discovered pattern-making, couture sewing techniques and textiles. One of my favorite things is when I see fabric that reminds me of someone I know and I can make something especially for them. Sewing is kind of like yoga for me – just sewing along, totally focused on what I am doing in that moment.

Judy Rambo (center) with her sisters in Wyoming.

Yoga mat bags that Judy has made for our community.
     © 2017 Yoga Centre | Created by: Frederick Dudek

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