My Yoga Journey
with Branislava Malcovati
Branislava Malcovati is a yoga teacher, based in Copenhagen, Denmark. In this interview with Ayurooms, she shares her yoga journey and offers inspiration to practice yoga.
Anyone can practice yoga because yoga has many forms. It is not about a specific pose; it is not about flexibility; it is not about strength and it is not about how you look to someone or in a picture. Yoga is not outside, it is inside. So, yoga is about your inner feeling in a specific pose. It is about your inner flexibility, your inner strength and how you feel inside. Anyone and everyone can do that. It will help you reconnect to yourself!
Interview with Branislava Malcovati
What does yoga mean to you?
Yoga is home. You are already there, you don’t need to go anywhere, you just need to look closer. And yet, you are free to go and explore, and you can always come back. Yoga is a journey. You don’t need money, really, you don’t need a passport and, if you are afraid of flying, it doesn’t really matter. It takes a lifetime, but it feels like a second. Yoga is union.
When did you first start practicing yoga and why?
My first encounter with yoga was when I was a young girl. My cousin gave me and my brother a book about yoga written by a famous Serbian ballet dancer and yoga teacher. I was fascinated by it all and immediately tried to sit in a lotus position. However, my more devoted practice started years later, in 2010. I had been battling with anxiety for years and, oddly enough, practicing breathing solved my problems. So I moved on from breathing (later I’d learn it’s called pranayama) to asana practice and from there the paths are just diverging more and more.
Were you ever resistant to learn yoga?
To learn yoga no, never. There were moments and days of feeling resistance toward strict asana practice. Sometimes, your body feels stiff and you feel reluctant, you’re looking for justification for not doing something. With time, I’ve learned that this resistance is connected to a certain asana, so finding a different approach to it, or just removing that asana from my practice for a while changed the entire experience. Another thing that always has a great impact on my yoga journey in general is studying yoga and, when I say studying yoga, I mean reading yogic texts, going to teacher trainings, doing online courses and learning from amazing teachers.
How has yoga impacted your life?
In literally every possible way! I never wanted to be a teacher of any kind. I thought I couldn’t do that kind of work, yet I became a yoga teacher. I had never thought about breathing and never knew it has such an immense impact on our body and mind; yet pranayama was my first step to yoga. I never dreamed about anatomy, yet it is one of my cornerstones. I’ve always liked change, if I had a choice; routine and repetition was always something that would bring boredom, yet yoga taught me to accept all change that comes and also how to see change within routine and repetition.
Why should someone practice yoga?
Short story - it is just so good for you! Long story - it is just really really good for you! Anyone can practice yoga because yoga has many forms. It is not about a specific pose; it is not about flexibility; it is not about strength and it is not about how you look to someone or in a picture. Yoga is not outside, it is inside. So, yoga is about your inner feeling in a specific pose. It is about your inner flexibility, your inner strength and how you feel inside. Anyone and everyone can do that. It will help you reconnect to yourself!
What are your favourite asanas and why?
It depends on the day, time of the year, or place where I am. As nature changes all the time, my relations and feelings towards a certain asana or group of asanas change. Inversions and balances always needed more focus, while forward folds were always something that came natural to me. I feel that this journey we take on, from meeting an asana for the first time, to some form of resistance or dislike, all the way to “I love this asana!” is what is important.
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