Striking Balance with Deepika Mehta

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Yoga helps me to connect with people deeply

Deepika Mehta

How did Deepika Mehta become a famous Yoga Instructor? Tell us about your journey.

I started Yoga when I met with an accident around 20 years back, in 1998. I used to do rock climbing and one day I fell from a rock which was around 40 feet high. I was told that I would not be able to walk and it took me two years to step up. That’s when I discovered yoga. It helped me in healing and that’s how I started my journey with yoga.

How has yoga changed your life? How important is yoga to you?

Yoga has changed my life because every time I am in trouble or every time I feel down mentally or physically, it helps me to connect from inside. When I connect within, that’s where all my power comes from. Definitely, yoga brought a drastic change in my life.

What motivates you or pulls you every day towards yoga and who
inspires you?

The feeling when I complete my yoga sessions. How great I feel mentally, how fit I feel physically and how empowered I feel, that is what motivates me every day to get on the mat. I inspire myself and there are so many goals that I want to achieve. I want to have that state of peace and clarity that comes from yoga, which inspires me to do it every day.

Please tell us about the best moments of your career so far.

Best moments of my career are teaching yoga to some amazing people. Every time I teach, I feel amazing because it helps me to connect with people so deeply, much more than I can connect with them socially. The high moments would be teaching Aishwariya Rai Bachchan for Dhoom 2, being contacted by Priyanka Chopra for Don and when I gave a session at TedX in New York. Also, when I taught Yoga in Dubai and there were around 3000-4000 people, it was like a rock show. When I did my first handstand that was incredible, lots of poses that I did for the first time have always been amazing moments for me.

Things you will never stop doing besides yoga!

I will never stop dancing, trekking and hiking because I love nature and mountains. I also like fitness and I do not want to stop being fit.

You were so young, how did you deal with that situation?

In the beginning when I just had my accident, I did not have any tools to work through this. So, this was very difficult for me. My parents were my pillars of support. I started reading a lot of self-help books which gave me a hope. I started believing in myself and knew that the situation will change and I will get my powers back .

How did you keep your calm in every situation? What were the first signs of hope after the incident?

The tools of yoga helped me to stay calm. The fact that no matter what happens outside there is always a space of peace within us, yoga and meditation helps you to connect with that space. That’s what helps you to stay centered and calm. My first signs of hope were when I read ‘An Autobiography of a Yogi’ by Paramahansa Yogananda and it gave me such a strong sense of hope. That was a turning point in my life.

What are your top five workout tips?

  1. Make sure you stay flexible because no matter what form of exercise you do, if you do not have flexibility, you can get injured.
  2. It’s important to do meditation and breathing which helps you to perform better.
  3. Make sure you do some kind of cardiovascular exercise once a week, like going for long walks.
  4. Do not just go for fads, take a note of the exercises you are doing.
  5. Strengthen your core, it helps your body.

Health tips besides the fitness regime?

Have lots of water, fruits and vegetables. Do not just go for low carbs, high protein and high keto diets. Observe what works for your body, we all have different kind of bodies. Do not eat a lot of processed foods and try to listen to your body.

What does your daily diet include?

Water with lemon, green tea, lots of fruits and vegetables. I eat simple Indian food, when I am in India and if I am travelling, I have salads. I mix it up and I do not have one kind of food always. But my basic rules are lots of fruits, vegetables, fibres and some proteins and fats.

You are a celebrity trainer too. Who is the best actor, according to you, in terms of fitness?

These days, I really enjoy watching Tiger Shroff because he is so fit. I love gymnastics and acrobatics, just watching him do all that stuff is really cool. I like Disha Patani, she is a pretty girl, and does gymnastics and acrobatics. For me, it is very inspiring to see people like that.

Something that people don’t know about you?

People who know me through social media, do not know that I am quite silly, and funny. They see an intense and serious side of me but I have a good sense of humour. I love people who crack jokes and have good sense of humour, so this is the other side of my personality.

The best yoga practitioners in Bollywood according to you

Malaika Arora, Shilpa Shetty, Aditi Rao Hydari and Jacqueline Fernandez

A trait that annoys you the most

Lack of respect, people have lost sense of respect towards people. The over casualness annoys me the most.

The most adventurous thing you did last year

My whole life is an adventure. I did a lot of trekking and learned surfing which was a big deal for me because I am hydrophobic. I have gone for a lot of forest trips and exciting solo trips too.

One superpower you wish to have

Backflips and actually, to be able to do any kind of moves that I watch, instantly.

Describe yourself in few words

I am very passionate and have childlike enthusiasm towards life.

Your workout song

There are so many.

Your guilty indulgence

Samosa with tea

Your pamper fix

I love good massages

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