BOSTON- Geeta Vallecha is fully immersed in the discipline and practice of yoga. After she received her Masters’ degree in computer information systems and work experience as a senior systems analyst, she received numerous certifications including: E-RYT 500, Yin yoga, classical form of Hatha yoga, YogaFit, BalYoga, among several others.
Ms. Vallecha believes yoga is much more than just an alternative form of exercise; it is a sustainable way of living a joyful and healthy life. She is passionate about researching and honoring roots of yoga and educating people about various facets of yoga, beyond Asana, in order to experience holistic benefits of yoga.
She has participated and taught numerous yoga, meditation and breath workshops with a focus on practical applications of yoga in current times. Currently, Geeta teaches yoga (virtually) at www.YogaWithGeeta.com. She remains a devoted student and a dedicated instructor.
On March 6, Ms. Vallecha will be honored as one of the 20 Outstanding Women of 2021 during the 18th Annual Woman of the Year Awards ceremony— to be held virtually this year. To buy a ticket, please click here.
A Q&A with Ms. Vallecha:
INDIA New England News: Please tell our readers about your work and what you enjoy most about it?
Geeta Vallecha: A strong commitment towards deepening my own understanding through my daily practice, research and a conducive lifestyle is the foundation of my work. This improves my experience, but more importantly strengthens my ability to teach better. Yoga is an ancient, deep and vast subject, and I frequently find myself learning new things and falling in love with it all over again. Yoga heals! I have experienced it in my own body and mind, and my joy has no boundaries when my students share their experiences of how it has healed them. I am passionate about sharing the wisdom of traditional Indian teachings to modern-era students and see them benefit from the knowledge and practice. I particularly enjoy sharing multiple facets (“limbs”) of Yoga and weaving in knowledge from seminal books: Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra, Shrimad Bhagwad Gita, Hatha Yoga Pradipika, etc. and make it relevant and accessible for my students. It is pure joy to create a safe, judgement-free, and inclusive environment for people from all walks of life and watch students thrive with continued practice, especially when they understand and apply integrative components of yoga: asanas with proper alignment, breath work, meditation and lifestyle.
INE: If you are engaged with any charity or non-profit, please tell us why this group and what do you do for them?
GV: Several charities and initiatives are near and dear to my heart. Times are hard and yoga helps! I believe Yoga should be accessible to all and to take measures, which are within my capacity to reach people from all communities, I have been teaching yoga for free to families that are facing hardships, due to the pandemic. Please contact me if you know of someone that wants to practice yoga but can’t afford it. Their privacy will be respected. I have benefitted from a pure and simple meditation practice—Vipassana Meditation—taught by www.dhamma.org. It was a life-enhancing experience for me, so I make sure to support it through annual contributions.
From participating in fundraisers, volunteering time, supporting educational institutions, shopping local, I try to engage with the community in as many ways as possible.
INE: What are your hobbies and interests?
GV: Cherishing daily pleasures and appreciating life is a gift available to all and I take full advantage of it. I love movement and stillness equally, so I enjoy outdoor activities (like hiking) and asana classes as much as being completely silent in Maun Vrat (Vow-of-Silence) or in meditation. I enjoy cooking for my family and spending time with them.
INE: In what way you feel you have most positively influenced or served the local community and your company/organization and professional field?
GV: We are all on a path to increase our capacity for positive achievements. Yoga helps transcend our limitations and tap into our full potential by increasing purity in our awareness and inner strength. My joy knows no bounds when people share that yoga fixed their “broken” bodies and they are enjoying living in a healthy body. I feel victorious when my students share that they enjoyed their walk, which they couldn’t before because of health issues. I feel grateful when I get to witness people transcend their small aches and pains to enjoy health and vitality. I feel motivated to hear that my students are able to wean off medications, with medical advice, for maladies such as high blood pressure. I feel inspired when my students share that they are enjoying a better relationship because they are practicing aligning with yoga principles. I deeply believe in the healing power of yoga; my students, through their testimony, have shared their experiences of healing and transformation at many levels. I don’t know if I have made any significant positive contribution, but I have been sincere in serving the community one class at a time. Yoga is a unique ancient system to help the body and the mind, and I take my job very seriously to study human anatomy, philosophy and many other aspects of the system to better educate myself and to better serve the community.
INE: Your rare talent?
GV: Does getting legs behind the head count? Well, not very rare in the yoga community though. Zooming out to see the big picture and solving problems has served me well more than a few times, and I consider that a “talent”, which everyone can (and must) develop.
INE: Your favorite books?
GV: I love studying ancient texts on Yoga. I recently enjoyed studying Yoga Rahasya with Ramaswami Srivatsa ji. “Happiness is Free” by Lester Levenson shifted my perspective in life in my 20s. I also enjoy reading autobiographies, “Born a Crime” by Trevor Noah is something I found humorous, uplifting and full of wisdom.
INE: Your favorite quotes?
GV: Yoga Sutra 1.14- “Sa tu dirgha-kala-nairantarya-satkarasevito Drdha -bhumih”
Translation: Perfection in practice comes when one continues to practice with sincerity and respect for a long period of time without any interruption/distraction.
“If you win a morning, you win the day”.
INE: Who inspires you the most?
GV: I find inspiration everywhere… sunrise, a good cup of tea, a good book, my yoga practice, my happy kids, my husband’s ability to think critically and quickly, my mom’s endless capacity to love and so many more things. Being around hardworking, happy and creative people particularly inspires me.
INE: Your core value you try to live by?
GV: Work hard and be happy. We are all one. Do no harm. Be kind! Be kind! Be kind!