Your fave is now teaching yoga, and you can now take her class! Read on to learn about Jessamyn’s new offering:
Jessamyn found yoga while caught in the undertow of depression, after her weight had spiked to its peak. Jessamyn’s yoga practice transformed her life and helped mend decades of self-imposed body shame and negativity. Yoga is for everybody, and Jessamyn’s mission is to spread the practice that saved her life into the future by expanding visibility of diverse bodied yoga practitioners at every possible opportunity.
Jessamyn Stanley is a yoga teacher, body positivity advocate, and writer based in Durham, North Carolina, and her classes use high energy vinyasa flow as a way to move past mental and emotional barriers. Her classes provide a body positive approach to yoga which celebrates students’ bodies and encourages them to ask “How Do I Feel?” rather than “How Do I Look?” when practicing yoga. Jessamyn studied with Kimberley Puryear and Stephanie Keach at Asheville Yoga Center’s Teacher Training Program and her eponymous yoga lifestyle blog and Instagram attract thousands of followers daily, offering tips and advice for other yoga practitioners while documenting her home yoga practice.
Jessamyn contributes to Wanderlust, Mind Body Green, Buzzfeed, and Elephant Journal, and has been featured by a wide range of international and national media outlets including Good Morning America, Al Jazeera English, New York Magazine, The Huffington Post, The Daily Mail, and The Sunday Times, among others.
Jessamyn, better known to the Instagram faithful as @mynameisjessamyn, has been putting a more positive light on the yoga community ever since she started her IG, by showing that yoga is, indeed, for every body and everybody.
Her class, literally titled Everybody Yoga, is geared towards helping the beginner in you wander from pose to pose, understanding not only what the poses do for you, but how they should make you feel.
Jessamyn’s perspective on size and yoga is refreshingly honest and encouraging, and it shows in her classes. From her interview with New York Magazine earlier this year:
I get emails from people all the time and they say, “I’m worried that people are going to be staring at me,” and I’m always like, “They ARE going to be staring at you.” That’s just the reality of it. We live in a society where we are trained to think that being overweight is wrong so people are going to stare at you. They’re going to have ideas about you. The only thing that you can control is your reaction to that.
I think that the best way to really get comfortable in practice is to just start practicing at home. And to build that happiness that will be with you regardless of what studio you go to.Excerpted from Curvy Yoga: Incredible Instructor Has Valuable Lesson to Share | A Black Girl’s Guide To Weight Loss
Jessamyn’s approach to her body—positive, uplifting, inspiring, a breath of fresh air from what you might pick up on from other yoga instructors—helps you feel comfortable with your own and, when you feel like a little extra belly or thigh is in the way, Jessamyn gently instructs you on how to accommodate it. She is, after all, in your shoes, too, and she’ll remind you. Her reminders bring comfort, and she makes you feel at home in her classes.