- Name: Stéphanie Gagné
- Occupation: teacher of hatha yoga, vinyasa yoga, prenatal and postnatal yoga, and stand-up paddleboard (SUP) yoga
- Favorite sport: yoga and particularly SUP yoga
- Indulgence: a blueberry smoothie with raw cocoa, almond milk, a dash of hemp seeds and a tad of almond butter—DELICIOUS!
What does having inner peace mean to you?
I believe confidence brings peace. When you have confidence in yourself, in others and in life, it brings about inner peace. There’s no room left for doubt. That means you can fully enjoy the gift of life and live in the here and now.
What’s your daily wellness routine?
In the morning, I like getting up a bit earlier than my partner. It’s a quiet and peaceful time that I really cherish. I start by drinking a big glass of water with chlorophyll, and then I make myself a cup of hot water with lemon that I let cool while I get seated in the siddhasana pose on a comfortable cushion in the living room. I can meditate like this for a long time, but since I have an active life and busy schedule, I meditate for just 10 to 20 minutes in the morning. It helps to awaken my body, heart and spirit and gives me a chance to set out my plan for the day.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
“We are alone on the path of light.” It wasn’t so much a piece of advice as a reality check that hit really hard once I fully understood the meaning of these words. I was in teacher training and was going through a very difficult period of self-doubt. I felt ill at ease with myself and was putting all of my energy into being someone I wasn’t. My teacher, who was also my yoga master, helped me find the strength to be who I really am. She gave me the tools that enabled me to start a deep healing process. By accepting myself for who I am, I was able to learn how to love myself again, love others and, above all, love life. Today, when I repeat these words to others, or to myself, it’s accompanied by a much-quoted line from Oscar Wilde that’s simple and humorous yet also quite powerful: “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
What was your favorite Lolë product this season?
This fall, I fell head over heels for the EKA pants! And I take my Unite cardigan everywhere I go. My most recent purchase is the Essential cardigan in mustard color—it’s ideal for my mountain lifestyle!
When did you start practicing yoga?
I started yoga as a teenager, around age 17. At this time in my life I was dancing a lot, so yoga was a good complement to ease my numerous self-inflicted injuries. I was performing and not paying attention to myself. I was a sports and running enthusiast and loved dance, but I overdid it and my body was suffering. It wasn’t until age 25 that I started slowing down. I began meditating. At first, I have to admit, I hated it! But only fools don’t change their minds. Something clicked inside me when I met Sylvie Tremblay at the Shanga Yoga Centre in Montreal. A year later, I left my job and jumped head first into teacher training with her. Life sometimes sends us messages we just can’t ignore. I’m happy to have listened to that little voice inside me that was saying: “Go on—do it! You’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain!”
What’s your favourite place for practicing yoga?
I love doing yoga in the sun, outdoors. In summer, my favorite place is on the water! I anchor myself on a lake or in the ocean, away from bathers, and enjoy the moment. The rest of the year, even if it’s cold and I don’t unroll my yoga mat, I’ll often combine a walk in a natural setting with asanas and various pranayama techniques. The session is often broken up with a meditation session on the ground, where I let the sunrays inspire me… and then I go home feeling light, reenergized and happy!
What’s your favourite yoga pose?
I love all the poses for what they bring me in the moment, from inhale to exhale. Currently, as early winter brings about a progressive inward looking, I prefer practicing yin and restorative yoga (gentler than vinyasa), which involves a sequence of yang (dynamic) postures. The balasana version with a bolster (cylindrical pillow) under the abdomen for support, a blanket under the knees and an additional one on the pillow is ideal for me right now.
What do you wear to do yoga?
My Lolë clothes! I really love the Salutation leggings. The high waist offers support and comfort with whatever asana pose I take!
Stephanie on Social Media
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/myyogalove
- Instagram: Stephanieyogalove
- Twitter: @YOGA LOVE_France
- Pinterest: https://fr.pinterest.com/myyogalove/
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