Do we bemoan the cruel hand of fate for dealing us a difficult set of life circumstances? Do we blame karma for some unfortunate or unforeseen ill turn of events which might not be to our liking? If we find the answer to these are YES, then perhaps this new documentary “The Center Lane” by SKII Global Studios (yes, the global skincare powerhouse has set up a movie studio) is for us to watch. It chronicles Japanese swimmer Rikako Ikee’s return to competitive swimming as an example of how the human spirit can find strength to rise above adversity in unprecedented times.
There are many quotable quotes in the short documentary/film but I found myself liking this the most
“Think about how you are going to live in this moment and how you are going to make it count”
The film’s title, “The Center Lane”, is inspired by Ikee-san’s quote when she first arrived at the pool to be interviewed by Koreeda: “I definitely love the center lane, I always ended up in the center lane at competitions, which you do when you are the fastest. So I feel like home. Like it’s my lane”. The new film uses a mix of live documentary and animation to shed light on Ikee’s inner thoughts, struggles and hopes as she trains for her competitive comeback.
This documentary is part of SKII/s #CHANGEDESTINY brand philosophy. Beyond sharing stories of hope and empathy, SKII feels a social responsibility to act now and to use their voice to support women as they take destiny in their own hands and overcome limitations placed on them. As destiny is not a matter of chance, but choice.
So why am I blogging about this? Is Yong Yoga endorsing SKII as a brand? How is this relevant to Yoga? You might be wondering….
The simple answer to the first question is simple. Swimming is also a sport I love since young. I didn’t afford swimming lessons so I am largely a self taught swimmer. Ikee’s story also resonates deeply with me because I have had my own “near death” experience more than a decade ago. To hear her talk about her fears, emotions and how she subsequently faced up squarely to reality and slowly fought back from the brink is very empowering. It’s also a personal reminder that real courage can come from within. For anyone.
Answer to second question. Brand endorsement. I am not a customer of SKII. But as a yoga teacher and common human being, I agree with their brand philosophy of owning our destiny and deciding how we want to live forward. The past is over. We cannot change what’s gone before, but we can certainly write the next chapter. In fact, Yong Yoga will also be more closely engaged with social and community causes as we will be sharing shortly! Stay tuned.
Finally why is this even relevant to Yoga? Yoga is more than poses and asanas. It is even more than wellness and health. If we adopt the most expansive views of Yoga being an eightfold practice about life in its entirety to help us know and unite our true essence and existence, then surely any story, tale, anecdote which celebrates courage, overcoming adversity and the beauty of a pure human spirit must be worth us learning from.
And these are the reasons why I recommend this video/documentary to our community. And SKII will be donating $1 for every view garnered on each SK-II STUDIO film in support of women in pursuing their destiny to create positive change as part of its brand purpose this year (capped at USD 500,000). So go ahead, watch it and do our part to help!