Today we’d like to take a moment to introduce you to Mary Laughridge, a recent graduate of the Teacher Training Class of 2018, who is now teaching the Saturday 5pm Intermediate class in Somerville.
Mary started doing yoga at a YMCA in her native North Carolina back in 2015. At the time she was looking for ways to get in shape. “I had no idea about the mind/body connection or the benefits of breathing,” she said. When she moved to the Cambridge area about a year later, she continued exploring yoga studios before spotting O2’s sign while waiting for a bus. She started practicing with us in July 2017, quickly becoming a Member and a beloved studio regular. Mary joined the Cambridge workstudy crew at the start of 2018 and decided to take the leap to do Teacher Training that fall. “I wanted to do the training because of my belief that you learn the most about yourself by teaching others,” she said.
And with that mentality going into the program, Mary knew she’d come out of it wanting to teach. “I needed to teach to help myself grow in compassion for other people,” she said. So when Mimi started talking to the 2018 TT group about auditioning for Karma, our teaching internship program, Mary was the first to sign up. “It was a no brainer,” she said, adding, “I believe you have to keep practicing and teaching in order to improve. My goal is to be able to teach people to appreciate their bodies for what they can do as well as what they look like. Happiness is obtained through self love. Super important in a very negative and critical world.” After going through the Karma process post-TT graduation, Mary said the most unexpected lesson she learned that she “is enough.” Continuing, she said, “I can do so much to help others just by being nice and understanding. I also learned that patience is a struggle but absolutely necessary in practicing and teaching yoga.” Good days and bad days are part of teaching, part of yoga, part of life itself, but dedicating time to move and breathe helps provide the tools to take the pressure to be perfect off. Mary finds a great deal of inspiration in yoga, both as a student and as a teacher. Her eyes are wide open to take it all in.
When Mary’s not at the studio, she is Flow cytometrist scientist at Merck Research Labs and Perkin Elmer Labs in Boston, hanging out with her beloved calico cat Bella (who she is training to walk on a leash), exploring fashion, appreciating all people, and cheering on the Los Angeles Chargers. Ultimately, she’s a southern girl living in a big city and making the most of it!
Welcome to Team O2, Mary! We are thrilled to have you on our teaching roster. We hope you all get to practice with her sometime very soon. Click here to see her schedule this week.