Mind, Body and Spirit; junior Rebecca Bien uses yoga to discover herself and find her inner zen


Talia Plachta - Photographer

Daria Gershkovitch - Staff Writer

With her feet firmly planted on her yoga mat and hands brought together in a simple sun salutation, junior Rebecca Bien slowly begins to forget about the world around her.  With each deep breath, Bien is able to regain her inner peace.  This Eastern practice of physical, mental and spiritual discipline has enlightened Bien to change her life for the better.

“To me, yoga is the union of mind, body and spirit,” said Bien.  “Yoga is not just about making your body flexible, but your mind as well.  It really changes your whole outlook on life, people, yourself and ultimately the world.”

At the age of 15, Bien attended Julie Kundert’s Ahimsa Festival, a nonviolence yoga fair.  After the festival, Bien knew she wanted yoga to be a part of her life.  Although Bien intended to practice yoga in order to improve her physical fitness, Bien’s after-school leisure activity soon evolved into a passion that brought peace to her everyday life.

“If I am super stressed out, I simply just stop, go in to an empty space and do yoga,” said Bien.  “Even if I practice for 10 minutes I instantly feel so much better.  Being able to push yourself to new limits and to try new things could not be a better feeling.”

Bien’s passion for yoga drew her to seek employment at Inner Power Yoga Studio in Woodland Hills.  Tired of working as a receptionist, Bien decided to enroll in the studio’s “Teacher’s Training Course.”  After four months of hard work, Bien received a yoga teaching certificate.  She can now teach nation-wide, including at Inner Power Yoga Studio.  Bien’s classes encourage her students to simply forget about everything and focus on themselves.  She also does her best to incorporate philosophy and stories behind each pose, teaching her students the importance of both relaxation and yoga beliefs.

“Although I am officially a teacher, I am still a student,” said Bien.  “I feel that is when you truly start learning.  I look at life like everyone is a teacher; there is always someone who can help you learn.”

Not only has Bien taught herself and her peers the importance of yoga, but she has also convinced both her mom and her sister to engage in this spiritual exercise.  Through the power of yoga, her family has established a tighter bond.

Because Bien benefitted from yoga at an early age, she feels a moral responsibility to pass on the advantage to her peers.  In the future, Bien hopes to teach weekly classes for teens.  Teens deal with immense amounts of stress and pressure in their fast paced lives, and Bien believes that yoga would help to alleviate that anxiety.  Also, Bien thinks that yoga has the potential to educate younger generations on how to react to people and unpleasant situations with ease and control.

“Everyone can benefit from yoga,” said Bien.  “Teenagers especially should take yoga classes to escape from the chaos  of school and drama.”

Bien’s zeal for yoga has allowed her to find inner peace—connecting her mind, body and spirit.