October 4, 2019
There is an oak tree on the grounds that I see and connect with on a weekly basis for the last three years. It is a tree that has allowed me to share the gift of health, well-being, and mindfulness with others. Through Aerial Tree Yoga I and other yoga enthusiasts have been breathing, stretching, and meditating underneath a big white oak tree. When practicing yoga underneath this tree, we are constantly reminded of the life and oxygen this tree provides us throughout our class and our lives..
Oak trees share many teachings that evolve into our yoga practice; they teach us to grow strong roots, to accept impermanence, to stay strong, and to be true to our selves. To practice yoga within a big old oak tree that once started as a tiny acorn brings a sense of hope and peace to our practice. I am grateful to be able to share and teach this practice of well-being to others, to be able to connect their mindful practice to nature, and to be present in the moment with all of my students.
Natalie Schilke is a volunteer services assistant and yoga instructor at The Morton Arboretum. Join an aerial tree yoga class to experience this powerful connection. Photography by Lara Benefield.