Plus-sized yogi proves anyone can do these extreme yoga poses
Jessamyn Stanley is the first to admit that, yes, she is fat. But you know what, she's also fit as hell, and she can do headstand to rival Jennifer Aniston's, so suck it!
Yes, at first glance, the self-professed "fat femme" does not look like your average yogi, and you'd be right to think that. Because the fact of the matter is, she's not your average yogi. For better or for worse, Jessamyn is one of a few (but growing) number of plus-sized women getting their yoga on--at least right now.
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Since becoming a regular yoga practitioner in 2013, Jessamyn has made it her mission to prove that yoga isn't just for flacas! The curvy yogi currently practices what she preaches, posting photos of herself striking impressive yoga poses and beautiful words of inspiration to her various social media sites. It's actually pretty amazing--but not because she's curvy. I'm just amazed to see the human body bend the way hers does. It's hard to believe she hasn't always been a super yogi freak!
The truth is, Jessamyn was once a yoga skeptic. However, she gave it a whirl when a friend of hers convinced her to try an unlimited Bikram yoga pass. And the rest, as they say, is history. The then-grad student found that her practice helped ease stress and becoming more physically and mentally flexible. Her only complaint was that there weren't nearly enough curvy women practicing alongside her. That was a big problem.
Encouraged by the countless emails and letters she received from people saying they wanted to try yoga, but didn't feel like their bodies fit the yogi mold, Jessamyn partnered with yoga teacher Davina Davidson to create the 30-day #SizeDoesntMatter yoga challenge! The response has been incredible!
These days, more than 19k people of all shapes, sizes, races, and creeds follow Jessamyn on Instagram as she walks them through each day of the challenge. The poses change every day and the challenges restart on a monthly basis, but the message remains the same: every BODY can and should do yoga.
I couldn't agree more. I'll admit that I used to brush off yoga as a skinny girl's workout. I avoided it for years because I thought a downward facing dog would make my ass look even fatter. However, much like Jessamyn, I soon learned that yoga isn't about weight-loss or the size of one's body. I've been practicing yoga on and off for a year, and throughout my journey I've found that the practice is about discovering untapped confidence, flexibility, self-love, and peace of mind. Those are things every BODY deserves and needs. In fact, they're things my body needs. It's with that in mind that I've decided to join Jessamyn's challenge, starting. Right. NOW!
Images via jessamynstanley.com