At first I didn't know that I was depressed at all. I had no idea why I was acting the way I was, and I didn't make the connection that I was depressed
or that I was anxious and just struggling to find like a will to get up out of bed every day and go to school or go to work or to interact with other people,
a lot of times I would try to live a life as a recluse.
My name is Virginia Rexroad. I am 26-years-old, I am a yoga instructor and I was diagnosed with depression in 2004.
I started doing Yoga when I was in gymnastics and cheerleading, just because I found it a great therapy to nurse some of my injuries.
And it also really helped me listen to my body and it really helped me mentally.
So even when I was first suffering with my first diagnosis of depression, the Yoga actually was a great aid in just day-to-day living.
So there are some specific poses that I do, that I find that help me with my depression depending on my current mental state.
One in particular that I really enjoy is Simhasana or Lion's pose and this one really will lighten your emotional load.
You just have to completely let go of your inhibitions and it's even really fun if you do it in front of a mirror and you just really -- you can even roar, you can just go Ha!
Practicing the physical poses, you have to find a focal point which might be a tree that's standing ahead or a light switch.
If you focus your concentration on that one point, then you can actually just propel yourself forward in the pose and find that peaceful mental state.
Balasana or Child's Pose, it really is a peaceful, calm, inverted like relaxing pose and it also provides a sense of security and safety just because of the position that your body is in.
So camel pose, I find is one of my personal favorites for actually like conquering depression just because I used to get a really tight feeling in my chest.
I always felt like someone is stepping down on me and I couldn't breathe very well. So actually when you lean back in this pose and really open up your heart.
And just let that really weighted feeling go, I find it easier to breathe and I just find that it really boosts my mood.
Making those connections was for sure the key to practicing yoga, and really becoming in tune with myself, and diverting away from depression or depressive states that I would find myself in.
I get so much out of practicing yoga, but teaching yoga – I get such a great feeling from seeing people get that same sense of self-worth and relaxation, peace and overall calm after I teach a class.
It's the best feeling in the world when people come up and are like, "I really needed that".