Urban | Mindful | Yogini
Photo by: Chelsea Lees
"Yoga opened up my eyes to the mindful benefits and calming nature of the practice"
I hurt my back during weight training at a ladies only gym when I was 21. While I was trying to put away a 45lbs heavy free weight, I felt this intense shooting pain in my lower lumbar. I knew instantly something wasn't right. I insisted on using the leg press machine, my stubbornness was unimaginable. Well this mindless action lead to my herniating three discs in my lower back (L3, L4, L5) confirmed by a MRI 5 years post injury. Post injury I started going to Physiotherapy to treat the pain I was in. My main focus was getting my core strength up to protect the injured area with strong muscles supporting spine.
I knew yoga was going to be part of my life forever.
A friend of mine recommended going to a yoga class near where we worked. I went and have never looked back. I knew yoga was going to be part of my life forever. The activation of muscles I didn't know I had. The feeling of being challenged (it was my first hot yoga class), staying with it and overcoming this challenge, all in one yoga class. The feeling of being energized, inspired and my eyes were literally opened - the feelings post class were so profound I felt ALIVE.
Of course I'm describing the physical benefits that I experienced first, but over the years yoga opened up my eyes to the mindful benefits, anxiety reduction and overall calming nature of the practice. I grew more interested to dive deeper eventually embarking on yoga teacher training in 2015.
After a 10 year dedicated practice of yoga, it was truly transforming. Yoga transformed me from the neurotic, anxious and high strung girl I was and helped me to become a better person. Not saying I’m not any of the things I just mentioned today, but at least I am in control rather than those emotions controlling me. Yoga changed me to be more authentic. Changed me to be more growth minded, and helped me learn why eliminating toxic people and habits from my life is oh so important to preserve a balanced, mindful and engaging life.
More recently, my love of yin yoga grew as I noticed what stillness and mindful benefits this specific practice brought to my life and how it helped me cope with work related stress. Later in 2016 I nursed an injury when I fell off a skateboard, and yin yoga was the only thing I could do. I discovered yin yoga is not only a healing practice physically but also mentally as it brings stillness I needed from my urban busy go-go lifestyle.
My intention of this website is to share my journey of yoga and how I try to live by applying the 8 limbs of yoga to my life in a more modern way that applies in the 21 century. I'll also be sharing my experiences of living the urban city life, working in the corporate world, and still finding the time to enjoy life and giving back to the community in teaching a passion of mine - yoga.
I hope my stories will inspire you and maybe help you cope with life and the stress it can bring.
Marzena (an urban mindful yogini)
Marzena Wojcik a certified 200 hour yoga teacher (Yoga Alliance Registered) has been practicing yoga for over a decade and yin yoga since 2014. Her 200 hour Yoga teacher training certification was done through Yoga4Life with local Calgary, Alberta teachers, Amy Theissen, co-teacher Jenelle Kitto. Versed in Anusara a Hatha based yoga practice.
Marzena also studied with Bernie Clark in May 2017 and completed his 50 hour Yin Yoga Teacher Training at Semperviva, Vancouver based studio. She continues to explore more on yin yoga and has taken several yin yoga trainings (Yin Yoga Level 1 and 2, Wall Yin Yoga and Dragon Dance) with Alan Mileham, through Passage Studios in Calgary, Alberta. She has over 85+ hours of yin yoga training. Marzena credits discovering the traditional form of yin yoga practice to local Calgary teachers, Jenelle Kitto and Alan Mileham, whom Marzena still attends classes with regularly.
Marzena also has a Bachelor's of Arts Degree majoring in Sociology and has a minor in Psychology. Her learning and education continues as she adds more tools into her tool box, to better serve her students and community to live happier, more balanced, and mindful lives.
Learn. Grow. Evolve.