Yogi Spotlight: Brenna Kaczynski

beach yoga

When did you first start practicing yoga?

I first started practicing in 2015 when I was in college. It was an adverse time in my life, and made the decision to turn my life around, mentally, physically, and spiritually.

How is yoga different from other workout regimens you’ve tried?

Yoga - to me - is being present. It’s putting headphones in, but not playing the music, just hearing my body, and the music within. Previously being a dancer, I love seeing where my soul leads my body and which motions react or soothe specific emotions. Yoga to me isn’t a workout regimen, it is a way to align my mind, body, and soul.

Has yoga helped you overcome any personal challenges or obstacles in your life?

[There are] too many to count; yoga has helped me grow in so many ways. Being able to have an outlet to go to, a community to vent to, a foundation to support you - you can overcome anything.

What have been some of the greatest benefits you’ve found - mentally, physically and spiritually - since you’ve started your yoga journey?

Mentally, yoga has taught me patience and acceptance. Understanding where my mind and body is today is great for today, in this moment. Physically, I have a slew of spinal issues. My doctor has nothing but positive remarks when it comes to keeping my spine flexible and strong in years to come. Spiritually, yoga has taught me that spiritual does not mean religious. My spirituality has grown tenfold since beginning my practice.

beach yoga

If you could go on a yoga retreat anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?

Ireland. My name is Gaelic, it means “Raven”. I feel an overwhelming pull to go there and backpack the land, and I’m saving up to do so. I want to live and breathe in the culture. Smell the green grass and cliff jump into their waters.

Air, Earth, Fire or Water - which element speaks to you the most in your practice?

According to astrology, which I am heavily into, I am an air sign. I believe that to be true. Air is fitting to myself and my practice because it can blow hot and cold, changing daily. Personally, I find such importance between the balance of the two.

I love incorporating multiple styles from day to day. One day feeling cold and wanting a yin stretch. Another, feeling hot and wanting to sweat it out with an ashtanga influenced power flow.

When in life do you feel like you need yoga the most?

I need yoga the most on my best days, as a reminder of who I am and what I am apart of. It’s easy to turn to your foundation and support in times of need. Through growth, I’ve learned the importance of being just as grateful for my practice the days I feel like “I can conquer the world” and humble myself on my mat.

If you could go to yoga class with anyone - famous or not - who would it be and why?

My grandmother. She was my second mother, my pooh bear to my piglet. She drove me to all my dance classes and sporting events as a child. She has been living with dementia for over two years now, and I help my mother care for her. I honestly just want her to see the woman I’ve grown into and recognize and understand it. I feel “my most self” - as I call it - when I’m on my mat, and I just want to share it with her.

What has making yoga a part of your lifestyle taught you about yourself?

Live on life’s terms. With each second forward is one more you lived and breathed, good or bad, you’re alive. The journey of gratitude and acceptance has been the most difficult yet rewarding journey I’ve decided to endeavor and I love every moment on this path.

Our mantra is “Live Limitless” and we aim to inspire others to pursue their passions free of self doubt and the pressures of societal norms. How has yoga helped you live limitless?

That is all I do. I’ve taken all of my dreams and made them a reality through living limitless. I plan on helping others tap into that inspiration, that fuel inside their soul, waiting to run their passion train through this universe wherever it takes them.

beach yoga

Do you have a mantra or a quote you live by?

The Serenity Prayer - which is funny because I’m not religious, but I love its meaning.

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time; enjoying one moment at a time; accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it; trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His Will; that I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with Him forever in the next.”

If you could design a yoga mat of your own, what would it look like? (Because sometimes dreams really do come true!)

It would be a color wheel of winter pastels: purple, blues, browns and greens, all blending together as it would with watercolor on paper. The design itself, over the top of the color, would have a thick black line as an outline with a white line within it. Creating pastel designs that make leaves, and roots, like you’re sitting in the woods amongst the leaves, dirt, and grass. That’s what I envision as a mat.

What is your go-to yoga outfit?

Leggings, tall thigh/knee high socks, sports bra, tank with a funny saying or band name, and pigtail braids.

If you had an unlimited budget to create your own yoga sanctuary, what would it include?

It would be as incorporated with nature as possible. I’m seeing somewhere where the mountains and woods meet a cliff and the ocean below. There’s a structure for shelter but yet there’s just as much nature inside as outside. Windows everywhere, and minimalistic materials.

Do you have a yoga playlist? If so, what kind of music is on it?

Honestly, I rotate between country, rap, pop, heavy rock, indie and alternative rock depending on my mood. However, I could pick my top three bands if I needed too. Flyleaf/Lacey Sturm, Tool, and Halsey.

Yogi: @brennamary527
Photographer: @maggiebythesea

By: Olivia Garrison