Kender du yoga-læreren Dana Falsetti? Hun er beviset på, at god form ingen størrelse har

19. marts 2019
af Christina Forsberg
foto: YouTube og Instagram
Amerikanske Dana Falsetti – også kendt som Nola Trees – er en kurvet yogalærer, der smitter alle omkring sig med sin kropspositive agenda.

Rigtig mange får nogle helt bestemte billeder i hovedet, når de hører ordet yoga. Blandt andet forestillingen om ”en idealkrop”. Og for mange kurvede kvinder kan ordet give en følelse af intimidering og usikkerhed. Vi har alle hørt de mange historier om store kvinder, der har følt sig totalt malplacerede, når de forsøgte sig på et yoga-kursus. Men heldigvis dukker der også flere og flere plus size-yoga-udøvere op på nettet og de sociale medier, og jo flere hold tilgængelige, som inkluderer forskellige størrelser, jo flere får glæde af yogaens fordele.

Amerikanske Dana Falsetti er en af de kvinder, der opfordrer store kvinder til at være frygtløse, elske dem selv radikalt og smide ideerne om en giftig diæt-kultur ud hvor de hører til – i skraldespanden!

Læs også: Se de skønne billeder: Yoga er for ALLE kropstyper!

Delte sine erfaringer

Dana Falsettis egen introduktion til yoga-verdenen adskiller sig ikke meget fra, hvad andre kurvede kvinder har oplevet. Yoga-studioerne hoppede ikke ligefrem i begejstring over at modtage hende der, og de vidste heller ikke, hvordan de skulle undervise hende – og for mange kunne historien ende der. Men ikke for Dana.

I stedet for at smutte, satte Dana fødderne i jorden og forlangte sin plads på yoga-måtten. Hun blev ved med at udforske yogaen og udviklede med tiden sit eget program, der bedre passede hendes størrelse og form. Og så begyndte hun at dele sine personlige anekdoter og erfaringer med yoga på de sociale medier.

Modtagelsen var overvældende.

Everybody wants to know where the confidence comes from, the body love, the lack of internalizing perceptions as identity. A few things have helped me see myself through a different lens. Allowing myself to be visible after years of hiding is one. Seeing other fat babes represented and thriving is another important one. But mostly, it’s because I’ve put work into loving who I am and I see a whole lot of worth in that person. My body happens to be a part of that. I definitely have days where I look in the mirror and don’t love my belly or whatever body part. But I don’t let it stop me and THAT has been the important change. Because I love my whole self more than I dislike any part of my body on any given day. More than I care about what somebody else thinks of my body. It’s not that you have to love your body constantly to live freely and with confidence, it’s about loving YOU. The point is that the body isn’t everything, but you are!! Just like bodies don’t need to be healthy to be respected, you don’t have to love yours every second of everyday or validate it any way to keep on your hustle. Identity is a complex thing. On some days my body is a huge part of that and it empowers me, but other days I’m empowered by my ability to see my body, not feel particularly empowered by it, and go live anyway. I think it’s a beautiful thing to love your body, but it’s not a hurdle that needs to be jumped in order to start living. Just like you don’t have to lose weight to start living. The hurdle to jump is to break this narrative that our bodies are everything. So much conversation in wellness culture revolves around the body, a lot of it is diet culture reframed. I think we need to see ourselves as much more than all of that and stay very aware. And please follow/listen to @sassy_latte who has had me on this thought train. Photo by @jacquelynpotter.

Et opslag delt af Dana Falsetti (@nolatrees) den

Thank you!! Just thank you. I somehow find myself in tears after workshops no matter how many times I teach them. The energy in the room after savasana, after I've shared my heart and soul and everything I have to offer, after all the students have done the same by showing up for themselves, I am overwhelmed. In the best way. I say it every time I teach but it's truly the unexpected light of my life to share this practice and to share my true self. I can't express how special it is to be met back with that same light from all of you. People fell for the first time, tried for the first time, and discovered new strength. We went around the room and shared why we were here, and so many of you came up after to share more. This is why it is my job and my first priority to create a safe space. Yoga isn't happy go lucky sunshine and rainbows. We come to our mats for a reason. Some of us are healing ourselves from addiction and trauma. Some of us are trying to know ourselves better so we can live fully. Some of us are navigating death, tragedy, loss. Some of us are trying to become present in our bodies. The beautiful thing is we all come together to create this amazing, supportive environment where everybody is welcome to have the exact experience they need to have. That is my goal as a teacher. To offer that space, to share myself fully, to give you a toolbox of knowledge so YOU can empower yourself. It's an incredible thing for me to watch, and I can't thank you enough for sharing yourselves with me as I do with you. Lots of love and thanks again to @onedowndog for hosting me, and to every student who showed up, traveled, wrote me a card, brought me a coloring book or a book of poetry or a bracelet or a pre-roll. I cherish you all and never forget what you share with me. Thank you ?

Et opslag delt af Dana Falsetti (@nolatrees) den

Fandt sit kald

Masser af mennesker kunne relatere til Dana og de vendte sig til hende for råd og inspiration. Det var ikke Danas plan at blive yoga-lærer, men på grund af manglen på inklusion i yoga-verdenen følte hun sig kaldet til at blive det. Hendes drøm var at skabe et sted, der kunne hjælpe alle, uanset størrelse, køn, form, krop eller farve. Efter i mange år at have ladet lav selvtillid diktere sine valg havde Dana Falsetti endelig fundet sit kald. Og hun fandt sin indre styrke frem til at overvinde frygten og bare prøve. Og som hun siger:

(…) "Mange store kroppe elsker at bevæge sig. Mange er stærke. Når vi får chancen, vil mange af os med glæde vise, at de formodninger, andre har om os, er blevet plantet og er falske."

Big bodies are capable. Many big bodies love to move. Many are strong. When given the chance many of us will gladly show you your assumptions about us have been planted and are false. I'm not mad at you for having those assumptions about me and my body or others, I had the same ones about myself because I was brainwashed too. And yet... many are runners, lifters, dancers, yoga practitioners, and everything in between just like anybody else. You might not see us on that clothing site, on that brand's social media, in your favorite yoga magazine or wherever else. You might only see us in before and after photos, in ads for weight loss, in articles about health concern, as tokens, but we are out here for ourselves and deserving of this space. Your eye is trained to see us in these spaces and find us out of place. But we belong. We are capable. I never pursued strength or movement because I thought it wasn't for me or was shamed and ridiculed for attempting either at essentially every point in life from grade school on. I saw and see the looks and hear the laughter. Of course people always change their tune when they see what I'm capable of - and doesn't that just reiterate my point? Only valid if I can shock you out of your assumptions... but you know what? That's alright. I'll keep doing my thing and being shocking with my body, with my words, with my fire, and that's exactly why I'm here. Literally here on instagram, and here as in existence. To live for me and never hold myself back. If I can give any insight to ignorance by existing, that's cool. When I move and breathe I get to be fully connected to this amazing body I disassociated from for so long and it's true peace. I don't feel drawn to posting much asana these days, but when I look at this photo I smile because I feel peace. I see my path and how much work I've done for myself against many odds. I get to keep that no matter what anybody thinks and that's the beauty of inner validation. Don't underestimate those of us in big bodies just as we shouldn't underestimate ourselves, and don't judge or shame the ones that don't impress you either. It's our time and it's been a long time coming ? ?@michelesuits

Et opslag delt af Dana Falsetti (@nolatrees) den

I know I've gone nearly silent on the yoga front. 4 years of working in corporatized yoga has been enough to exhaust me. I think the biggest reason has been that I'm working in a world that still mostly isn't for me. Doesn't mean I don't know I deserve this space, but it's hard to feel that and I feel it consistently. I feel the vibe, get the looks when I enter studios. Many companies who want to work with me don't come from a genuine place. Many companies don't want to work with me because of my body or my message and worry how their audience will respond. When I show up for shoots or features it's all about the flashiness, because a fat girl can only redeem herself if she is extraordinary (usually physically, to make up for the fatness). I am grateful every opportunity to be myself and help others. It's just caught up with me recently, and I needed the reminder for myself that the very things making me tired are all the reasons I do this work. Because so much needs to change. Those who perpetuate body shame, who create and uphold standards, who box people out... that's why. I do this work BECAUSE this space still isn't for me as someone in a fat body, because I still shock people with my body, and I've got a lot of privilege working in my favor. So for me to still feel that... I can only imagine how so many others feel and hear their experiences often. Of course nobody wants to step foot in their first yoga class. Of course people think this practice isn't for them. We can pretend the western (yoga) world isn't full of privilege (many kinds) or we can call it like it is and make shifts. I'm not above this. I am discussing it. I try to use my privilege to get important messages into the world, to share yoga with those who never see themselves on the cover of Yoga Journal, or in ads for yoga apparel, or in photos of asana, or in a live class. My hope is to continue better serving you as I learn. It's not just about self love, though I hope everybody can come to that place. It's about recognizing the ingrained bs that hinders us and deciding to rise. It's been my pleasure to watch you rise. Without you showing up for you, I wouldn't have the energy to continue.

Et opslag delt af Dana Falsetti (@nolatrees) den


I dag bliver hun fulgt af over en halv million mennesker på de sociale medier under navnet @Nolatrees, og alle finder de styrken i at dyrke yoga. Desuden kan man abonnere på betal-hvad-du-kan-videoer, podcasts osv. på hendes hjemmeside

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