Monday, May 20, 2024

Published on Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Finding Your Inner Trade Show Self

Yoga tips for menMy lovely wife has been faithfully going to yoga classes a few times a week for several years. She swears it has helped with her balance, strengthened her core and reduced the stress and strain of daily living. She keeps telling me, I have to go too.


“Whatever you are doing for your core,” she said “ain’t working.” Ouch.


A few weeks ago, Shelley informed me she had a free pass, so I was going and that was that.


The thing about yoga, is that it looks easy. Any videos or ads you see on television or online show shapely young women and skinny, tight-muscled men, doing what seems like the impossible.


Yoga poseWrap my leg around my neck three times while supporting myself with one hand? No problem.


Stand on my head and turn my back 180 degrees while I balance on a paddleboard during a storm with 4’ waves on Lake Michigan? I’m all over it.




Perhaps the biggest hurdle was knowing that I was going to look like the uncoordinated, out-of-shape suburban male, that I am, in front of a room full of young ladies. “They don’t care,” she said, “and besides, there are a lot more men doing this than you think.”


Hot yogaSo off I went. Luckily the room was dimly lit and hard to see anyone else. She told me about the room being 85 degrees, which didn’t seem bad until we started with our downward dogs and slithering snakes. I was perspiring more than if I were running a full court basketball game. And yes, there were men - some like me.


Yoga lungeThe instructor was helpful. She sensed and saw my challenges and spent a fair amount of time guiding me through it all. So, at the end of the day, I survived, probably lost a few pounds of water weight and no one laughed at me (at least out loud). I was very impressed how well Shelley did. It was obvious that years of taking classes meant she could easily twist, turn and stretch where I could only “budge”.


To experience the positive effects of yoga, it obviously requires taking more than one class. In fact, I can see how it can take an ongoing commitment of months, and possibly years, of classes to experience results. You cannot be an expert if you only practice once a month, or even several times during the year.


Trade show installationAfter years of working with trade shows and events, one very important fact I have learned is that practice and repetition do make for a better experience. They also increase the likelihood of meeting the goal of exhibiting at an event, whether it is to gather leads, write orders or extend your brand.


If you’re coordinating only a few events a year, planning a successful show can be a moving target, with changing rules. If it’s not something you do day after day, it’s like my one-time stab at yoga, you need someone to guide you through the challenges.


Chicago Auto ShowAt Prairie, this is what we do. We do it all day and everyday, and have been doing it as a company for over 25 years (some of us longer). We help clients decide what type of structure and graphic solution make the most sense for their application. Is it a purchase? Would a rental save money? What about logistics and labor? Every city is different and every venue within a city can be different as well. Let us help you get through your trade show and event schedule with tried and true products and best-practice services, to help you succeed. We’ll guide you through the downward dogs, lunges and cat-cows of the trade show world.


Goat YogaAs for me and yoga? I might go back, but I know it will be a long-term commitment if I want to take full advantage of the practice.


Now if they had goats ….


Steve Moskal









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Steve Moskal
Steve Moskal

Steve Moskal

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Full biography

Steve’s journey in the trade show and event world started in 1983 with one of the original Nomadic Display sales organizations in North America. In 1994, he co-founded Prairie Display/Chicago.

Steve was an Allied Board Member of TSEA (Trade Show Exhibitors Association) from 2007 to 2011 and recipient of the TSEA President’s Award in 2009. He also served as Financial Chair of the Midwest Exhibit and Event Professionals (formerly the Chicago chapter of TSEA) and as a commissioner with the Elmhurst Economic Development Commission from 2011 to 2016. Currently he is Vice President of Education for the Addison/Elmhurst, IL Toastmasters Club.

When not working with customers and co-workers at Prairie, you can find him trying to spend more time biking and pursuing other creative endeavors. Steve lives in Oak Brook, IL with his beautiful and equally understanding wife of 26 years, Shelley.

Steve is a graduate of Northern Illinois University, with a B.A. in Journalism and a Fine Arts minor.


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