msgt. cohen a. young recently shared with sun herald the gift senior airman kandie ibarra is providing during her afghan deployment as a hospital lab technician.
ibarra has been practicing yoga for six years and could have continued her practice on her own but, instead, chose to share her experience to support her colleagues in this challenging environment.
“namaste, everyone. the first thing i want you to do is relax and concentrate on your breathing” are among the first words you may hear in a yoga class in a spacious classroom, fitness club or your own living room. but to hear those words among co-workers in the small confines of a hospital waiting area in afghanistan where an office chair may inhibit you from fully extending yourself in the warrior 2 pose, after having spent three hours in an operating room, then it might mean that much more to you.
he later addresses what it means to “find calm” in such a high pressure environment:
how each of the medical professionals deployed here deals with the stress varies. but for ibarra and her co-workers, yoga offers a quiet escape to a calm and relaxed environment.
“yoga provides me a quiet place to go and get away from the stresses of the day,” said ibarra, of blackfoot, idaho. “as a lab technician, our section responds to traumas several times a week and we see the results of the war firsthand. everyone handles stress differently. what we do can affect people differently.”
while ibarra isn’t officially certified as a yoga instructor, she didn’t let that stop her. she did some research and found the organizations yoga for vets and mindful yoga therapy who were eager to help by donating yoga mats and books to support ibarra and her team.
for the original source of this story, visit the sun herald website.