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Make a connection with yourself through Yoga

By Staff | Dec 24, 2014

Yali Zawady BRIAN WIERIMA

There is a practice in which can shape your body, soul and mind – all at the same time.

The versatility of the art of Yoga has picked up popularity over the course of the last decade, as people have found out it’s a form of exercising both your body, spirit and mental states.

Now, both guests and the public can be instructed by one of the best in the area, Yali Zawady, at the luxurious South Seas Resort on Captiva Island.

Zawady will lead Yoga classes on the beautiful lawn of South Seas Resort, as she will instruct students specifically in Ambu Yoga, which “symbolizes the connection between the energy flow of the water and mind-body-spirit experience of yoga.”

Zawady’s journey instructing Yoga started in her homeland of Columbia, where she lived in Santa Marta, Magdalena. It was her father who introduced Yoga to her, although his was focused on meditating and prayer exercises.

Students will learn poses and stretching exercises during their classes with Yali Zawady, which will prepare the body for meditation. Yali Zawady will help students connect with their bodies spiritually, as well as improving their physical condition. BRIAN WIERIMA

Zawady instead took another path with Yoga, incorporating both mind and body.

“I took my first class which focused on movement linked to breathing,” Zawady said. “Something really happened after that, a shift. It was a great connection. Then I practiced on and off and practiced a lot at home.”

As she progressed in the practice, an unfortunate valley in life occurred for Zawady, and she turned to what made her feel better – Yoga.

“I was passing through a difficult time of life, so I started to dig into Yoga,” she said. “There was always something else, besides the physical part. I became very committed to yoga practice and decided to teach and explore different styles.”

Her commitment came in the form of practicing Yoga five times a week, while reading and studying up on each of the styles. She became strong in practicing of meditation and pranayama (breathing exercises).

Students will learn poses and stretching exercises during their classes with Yali Zawady, which will prepare the body for meditation. Yali Zawady will help students connect with their bodies spiritually, as well as improving their physical condition. BRIAN WIERIMA

Zawady’s passion and commitment to Yoga led her to the path of sharing her love for it in the form of teaching.

Her teachings take both from the physical and mental practices of Yoga, with Hatha being the physical side and Karma being more on the spiritual side.

“I believe in movement and encourage my students to move and do the poses,” Zawady said. “What I teach, is in the middle, where you’re going to move your body and prepare for meditation. You will feel a connection with your body, as well.”

With the opportunity of teaching to both the South Seas Resort’s guests and to the public, Zawady is excited about her new venture on Captiva Island.

“I am looking forward to teaching here, because we live in a stunning and amazing destination,” Zawady said. “A big chunk of my students are visitors, so it’s a good opportunity to provide something new and different to people.

“They can use Yoga as a way to make changes in the world and in their lives.”

South Seas Resort is also happy to host Zawady and her Yoga classes, to add to an already strong wellness program.

“We’ve recently done a lot more with wellness during travel,” said South Seas Director of Marketing, Daniel Smock. “We spent $200,000 on a fitness center and Yoga comes in and helps balance all that out. It really provides mental wellness along with that.”

Zawady’s classes will be offered on Mondays and Fridays from 8:30 to 9:45 a.m. on the King’s Crown Lawn. The classes will be held rain or shine, with the inclement weather location being inside the King’s Crown facility.

Strengthening your mind and body is a direct benefit of practicing Yoga, thus giving one a self sense of accomplishment.

“I want them to feel connected with themselves,” Zawady said of her goal for her students. “Yoga can create a confidence that there are many more things they can do. You can use Yoga as a way to make changes in the world and in your own life.”

South Seas hosts Holiday Stroll

For the second straight year, South Seas Resort is hosting the Holiday Stroll, which will end this coming Friday and Saturday.

Over the course of the holiday season, South Seas Resort opened its doors to the public where attendees were treated to a host of Christmas lights, snow, entertainment, arts and crafts and of course, Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus.

All proceeds, adults are charged $10 and kids are free, will benefit the Community Cooperative, an innovative nonprofit organization made up of social service entrepreneurs fighting to end homelessness and hunger in the community.

Last year’s event raised over $50,000 for the Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida.

The final weekend of the Holiday Stroll will be Friday and Saturday from 5:30-9:30 p.m.

South Seas Resorts will also host a New Year’s Eve celebration on the King’s Crown lawn, with the Danny Morgan Band performing. The family-friendly celebration will be from 8 p.m. to 12 a.m. with a $10 charge to adults (also benefitting the Community Cooperative), which includes a glass of champagne at midnight.

Partners in the Holiday Stroll included Galloway Ford-Lincoln (title sponsor), Captiva Cruiser, Island Store and Baileys. Tickets can be purchased in advanced at these locations.

“These events are a great way to give back to the community,” Smock included.

To learn more about Zawady’s Yoga classes, contact her at 239-314-9642 or visit her website at www.ambuyoga.com.

For more information on taking Yoga classes or about the New Years Eve event at South Seas, contact them at (239) 472-5111.