Eefa Shroff is a perfect blend of hard-work and smartness. She is an ace Yoga instructor, a highly certified fitness trainer and a lifestyle coach! Her client list speaks volumes of her achievements in life. She has trained well known personalities of Bollywood including Hrithik Roshan, Anushka Sharma, Anupama and Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Abhay Deol, Sussanne Khan, Gayatri, Vikas Oberoi and Dipali Goenka.
Eefa is an all-rounder, has been featured in top television channels including the show ‘India’s Best Jobs’ and has also shared her inspiring journey at TedX. In a conversation with TLJ, Eefa discusses her ‘21-day challenge’ and an insight into yoga.
What role has yoga played in your life? How has Yoga changed your way of perceiving things and life in general?
Yoga has been life-changing for me. I was introduced to yoga in 1996 after I had an accident in which I was badly injured. I was going through plastic surgeries. I was so badly injured that doctors said I will not be able to walk again. That’s when I started doing yoga.
You fought the destiny and despite all odds you are one of the top yoga instructors of the country. What is your take on it?
I have never looked at myself as a Yoga teacher; I have always looked at myself as a Yoga student. I maybe a little senior to some and junior to a lot but when it comes to yoga, even scriptures do not mention any such thing as a yoga teacher. I think we made up this job description. In yoga philosophy we say there is swadhika and a guru, a swadhika is a student or a practitioner, and the guru is the master of yoga and you can be either of them. Teaching asanas to someone is a very small part of yoga.
Please tell us about your initiative ‘the 21 day challenge’? And how can people take up this challenge?
The 21 day challenge is not just a yoga challenge, 21 day challenge is a body transformation challenge, we work on strength, endurance and flexibility, and body composition.
Why should people take this challenge is like asking why should people make money? When God has given you capacity then why not? So, for me the 21 day challenge is the same, when I came up with this idea, I was going through some tough time in my life and I choose fitness to overcome it. When we are going through some real tough time in our life, we are stressed, we can either get in to drugs, start drinking etc or we can remove the frustration through fitness, making our life better.
We do the 21 day challenge online as well, we have also started a super 21 day challenge in which I train people online, and I take them through three-months of training so that they can achieve full results. You can go to my website, www.eefashroff.com; I am on Facebook and Instagram as Eefa Shroff. And from there you can connect with us.
What kind of challenges did you face as a yoga instructor?
One was money as I come from very humble background. When I started teaching around 1998-2000, I was doing four jobs at a time and one of them was teaching yoga. I think people did not give enough priority to Yoga. The attitude of people is ‘let me just pay a small amount of money to somebody and let him or her take responsibility for my well-being’. It does not work like that. You may hire somebody to teach you, but they can only teach. The rest one has to do himself or herself. This was a challenge in my earlier days and is a challenge even today.
Which is your all-time favorite yoga asana?
My all time-favorite yoga asana is shirshasana (head stand); all problems in the world can end with the head stand. I cannot imagine someone who practices this pose thinking of doing some crime or anything wrong.
Can you enlighten us on some yoga health benefits?
There are so many…but number one I would say is ‘balance’. With yoga you get endocrine benefits as well.
What is the role of a correct diet while doing regular yoga?
Keeping things in moderation is very important while doing yoga. Keeping balance between all nutrients is also necessary.
International Yoga Day falls in June, your message for the readers?
Practice Yoga wherever you are, stop buying that perfect outfit, yoga can happen anywhere, close your eyes, watch your breath and try to find that balance.
Any specific asana or tips that you would like to give our readers in general?
Stand straight against the wall and see everything is well aligned, I think it is the simplest thing we can do. Too many people have hunch, too many young kids have hunch back, this we should all take care of.