Serenity Yoga: Self-Motivation, Self-Love
Michigan-based yogi Kelsey Koch was born without a tibia. After having a through-the-knee amputation on her left leg when she was just nine months old, she grew up wearing a prosthetic leg that looked realistic but wasn’t practical for exercising.
It is easy to get caught up in what people think and how they would like the prosthesis to look—as natural as possible. She carried those thoughts with her for some time but finally felt free to realize that it was not properly functional for activities like yoga or running.
She discovered yoga at the age of 22 after she started working with a personal trainer at her local athletic club. She sought treatment for scoliosis, which was caused by being dominant on one side of her body. Her trainer, Jen Colombo (Sesti), suggested she try yoga. Jen also suggested that she switch to a running-blade prosthesis, a lighter model designed for fitness.
The new prosthesis made a huge difference and was much lighter so she could live her everyday life easier, and invert easier as well.
Mastering advanced inversions with her legs over her head was not immediately achieved. Kelsey says that it is important to realize how mindful of your practice you need to be and to really put time and effort into it, in order to realize any benefits. Kelsey dedicated herself to her practice, and her passion for yoga grew— as did her strength.
She completed a 200-hour yoga teacher training in May 2016 and started teaching yoga at her nearby athletic club. Kelsey credits this beautiful journey and transition for her progress…and she knew she wanted to keep climbing. Her dream of opening her own studio became a reality when Serenity Yoga opened its doors on March 1, 2017.
As owner of Serenity Yoga in Grand Blanc, Kelsey teaches yoga daily, allowing her to share her passion about her practice and help others find strength, self-love, and hope.
The classes at Serenity Yoga are for people of all abilities, both able-bodied and disabled. “The people attending my classes can see me, and they’ll know, ‘I can do it. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but eventually if I keep trying, I can do it too!’” she said.
Outside her studio, Kelsey still teaches at her local athletic club, Genesys Athletic Club, where she teaches yoga, helps run kids’ programs and works their front desk. She also travels to local schools, where she teaches children on the autism spectrum. Recently, she started coaching the girls’ golf team at Grand Blanc High School. Being able to coach golf, something she’s been passionate about her entire life has been one of her favorite parts of her journey.
Finding herself, her strength and being able to pass it on to so many others has been a life-changing experience for Kelsey. In December 2018, she received what she calls “an invitation of a lifetime,” when she was asked to be a part of the Reeboks 2018 Womens’ Calendar.
Striding forward, Kelsey Koch continues to work hard every day to promote self-love, self-love inclusion and acceptance.
8469 S. Saginaw St. Grand Blanc, MI 48439