Sunset Venice Beach. A hazy mauve and pink sky. Nature supplies a filter that is no match for any on Instagram. The day may be wrapping up but beach yoga is just getting started.
“Connect your feet to the earth, reach your arms to the sky. Feel yourself as the connection between the two,” says teacher Rose Pelosi as people gather, ready to let the day’s stress slip away with the sinking sun.
Free beach yoga is back for summer. Three nights a week; Monday, Wednesday, and Friday Pelosi makes time at a space on Venice Beach to guide yogis and yoginis, from beginners to advanced, through one of the best yoga experiences in town.
From tourists wearing jeans to a hippie dude with a man-bun, killer abs, and an ability to do the longest headstand ever. Body Love Yoga is open to everyone. While the classes are free, Pelosi will accept a donation, “accepted but never obligated,” she says. “I don’t want money to be a reason not to do yoga.” It’s all part of Pelosi’s aim to make the yoga experience as least intimidating as possible.
“We’re all in this together and I’m here to share what has effected me in the most beneficial way. The experience I’ve had. The main reason I teach yoga is to instill confidence in others. My main belief is that the better you feel bout yourself the better you treat the rest of the world around you. We all deserve to feel good.”
This will be the second summer Pelosi has offered her free Body Love Yoga beach classes. The Venice local has found her beach. However this wasn’t always the case. She grew up a long way from yoga and the sea, “in a pizza restaurant in Nashville.” She explains she discovered yoga because of a boy, “I was in high school and wanted to get in shape because I had a crush on a boy,” she says. While the crush didn’t last, her love for Yoga did.
“Life is chaotic and yoga works to bring about equilibrium. Bringing you back to center. Also, just peeling back the layers and chipping away at what I call this core brilliance, that we are all born with, and we’ll die with, and we have along the way. It’s nothing we have to create.Yoga helps us to uncover that,” says Pelosi.
Another thing she plans to introduce this year is the opportunity for new teachers to practice leading a class. “I’ve been there, fresh out of my teacher training with nowhere to put all my knowledge into practice.” Pelosi will give new teachers a chance to gain real world experience. “I’ll take the class and give written feedback at the end,” she says. For Pelosi it is yet another way to make yoga accessible. “That really is my main goal, that yoga really is for everyone.”
For Pelosi it is important we are all given the opportunity to connect with what she calls, our “core brilliance.” She says, “by benefiting yourself and finding yourself, you’re benefiting the rest of the world. Why is it so hard for us to admit that we are awesome? I really have a passion for allowing people to feel how strong they can be and how clear they can get and know that there’s a simple tool that’s already inside them that can help them get through this crazy-ass life that’s stressful. The tools are all there. We all have them. The love. The strength. The truth. You just have to tap into it. It’s right there within you.” No filter required.
Body Love Yoga free beach classes meet June through October, every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 6:30pm on the sand in front of Ocean Front Walk at Thornton Ave.