Spirit Filled Yoga dispels myths in faith community
By Kimberly R. Simmons
Special to the Michigan Citizen
DETROIT — “It’s time to get in touch with yourself, take time to breath, slow down and find your breath,” said Kimberli Boyd, founder of the Spirit Filled Yoga Institute. “It’s time to be at home with yourself.”
The Spirit Filled Yoga Institute Annual Community Wellness Event will take place for eight consecutive days from Aug. 10 to Aug. 17 at various locations around the metro Detroit area.
Founded and taught by Boyd, yoga instructor and former dancer, the event is for beginners, intermediate and professionals. This year’s theme is “The Practice is Where You Are.”
Boyd began the institute some years ago as a response to a call-to-action by her pastor, Rev. Dr. Wendell Anthony of Fellowship Chapel Church. Anthony challenged his congregation to give a year of service in their area of expertise to the community.
Boyd saw this as a great way to introduce yoga to many in the faith-based community and to dispel many of the myths surrounding the practice of yoga.
“This was an opportunity to help people authentically practice yoga but not lose their faith or spirituality,” Boyd said.
While some people may be concerned about the practice of yoga as a religion, Boyd states that doesn’t have to be their goal.
“The practice of yoga is very much a part of and integrated in some religions,” Boyd said. “But praying to a god other than the one they believe in does not need to be the primary focus in practicing. I’m very clear that we are practicing from a place of physicality.”
Boyd started her journey in yoga over 10 years ago. While pregnant with her son, she was looking for a way to remain active and found yoga to be the trick.
With more than 200 hours in training from the Yoga Shelter, Boyd is passionate about participants learning the poses, stretches and breathing.
“One of the most powerful ways to change your body and mind is to change your breath,” Boyd said, who teaches this and more in her classes. She says she believes that when we are in a state of high stress, it inhibits our ability to be creative and limits our energy.
The goal of the Spirit Filled Yoga Institute is to help participants concentrate more on their breath, maintain calm, build a strong core, and maintain a firm foundation physically, spiritually, philosophically and metaphorically.
Experts state the benefits of consistently practicing yoga range from an increase bone density, increase in lung capacity, blood pressure regulation, an increase in flexibility and the balance of blood sugar.
“The fact that we’re posing and bending means that we can affect ourselves internally and externally,” Boyd said.
She said yoga has taught her patience and wants beginners to stick with it, even when it gets rough.
“There are many types of yoga. If one doesn’t work, try another one,” Boyd said. “Be persistent and be empowered about your health and wellness.”
In addition to yoga, Boyd is offering a seven-day detox for participants. The detox kicks off Aug. 10 at Fellowship Chapel as part of the Heritage Day festival.
For more information on Spirit Filled Yoga, visit www.syfi2013.com. For more information on Boyd, visit www.dbtlonline.com