Inspiring Yogi | Ashley Cooley

Today we are featuring a yogi who has been a part of Inspire Yoga since 2011 – Ashley Cooley! Ashley has primarily attended the Highland Village location through the years, though you might find her from time to time at Denton. She is also currently enrolled in the IYS 200 hour Teacher Training program. Ashley is a gentle and joyful person who is encouraging to be around. We know you will love reading about her journey with yoga.

Denton is my hometown. I was born here…I’m a Flow hospital baby! It’s a wonderful feeling to practice yoga where I’ve grown up.  I’ve been an elementary teacher in Argyle for eighteen years…currently first grade, I’m also a certified Peak Pilates instructor and dancer. I have two children (ages eight and ten) and have been married for seventeen years.

I feel that I’ve naturally been a yogi all my life…with a love for tipping upside down, testing my balance and just feeling playful. Officially, I’ve been practicing yoga for about twenty years but I have always loved to move…my degree is in dance from the University of Alabama. After I graduated, I quickly started working on my Pilates certification. Yoga completes my movement triangle.

Yoga compliments my ballet and Pilates with breath, flexibility, balance, concentration and meditation. The three marry well together for me. Pilates and ballet are very regimented, yoga is too but in a restorative way that leaves me centered. This movement triangle has made me a melting pot of stretches…

You know that feeling you had when you were a kid swinging on the playground at recess? I’m addicted to finding that same sense of lightness and I find it every time I practice yoga. I’m crazy about slackline, SUP yoga and aerial yoga too! My mom calls me her ballerina hippie!

There is a meditative spiritual feeling I have when I’m practicing yoga. I love to find a sense of peace, playfulness, creativity and empowerment to thrive on and off the mat. What I love about yoga is that it’s open to how you feel that day. We can always do something better, but why not take a cue from yoga and just be who we are today.

I teach a class full of seven-year-olds and I have young children of my own! Yoga reduces the stress that comes with that and it increases well being…I don’t get sick very much! Yoga provides me with energy, balance and harmony that I need after what ever kind of day I’ve had! The whole world should practice yoga!

I also love to teach yoga to children. Kids these days are very stressed and anxious! There are a lot more expectations on them today than when we were in school. I don’t like to have my first graders sedentary all of the day…so we move, stretch and breath…then they are ready to focus again. As a teacher, I recognize and appreciate the effect that yoga has on them, promoting calm and concentration.

The whole world should practice yoga…every age and every day!

Inspire Yoga has been my yoga home for a long time now. I love the happy vibe that I get when I walk in the door and then practicing next to familiar faces gives off a powerful energy. I’m thrilled to be going through teacher training here and look forward to enjoying many more years in my yoga home.

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