There are many forms or brands of yoga. What I offer draws from lineages that have had the most impact on me. I rely on teachings and wisdom handed down from teacher to teacher, teacher to student, student to teacher – we all learn from one another and our practices evolve.
What worked for me in the beginning still works for me, although my personal practice has changed multiple times in the past 30 years. What this means is that I still have a regular practice which has been influenced by various teachers over the years. It is further influenced by the seasons, my age, and how I’m feeling. When yoga becomes part of your life – a lifestyle – it becomes easier to know what to do on a given day. This doesn’t mean practice is easy, it will always be practice.
I’ve been doing yoga since 1986, mostly in the Kripalu tradition but with a period of time when I was drawn to an Ashtanga practice which lasted about 4 years. I’ve also been exposed to other styles of yoga offered by seasoned teachers. I’ve been certified to teach Kripalu Yoga since 1993, and am also certified in Phoenix Rising Yoga therapy since 1997. In 2001, I met Swami Shantimurti Saraswati and he led me to teach Satyananda Yoga Nidra. These experiences are the primary drivers of my teaching style.
• Group classes and workshops are one of the ways that people begin a yoga practice. You might find or build community with like-minded people and also experiment with different styles and various teachers.
• Individual instruction is beneficial for anyone, but particularly for someone coming back to practice after an injury or other absence. It’s also helpful if you’re new to yoga, are less comfortable in groups, or want to fine tune an existing practice. • Yoga Therapy can be offered in group or individual settings. For instance, in my work as a Yoga Therapist at the Veritas Collaborative, I tailor my classes to be appropriate for people in recovery from disordered eating. What this means is that consideration is given to what is best for this particular group at this time in their life. That doesn’t mean the class would be inappropriate for other people, but that there is discernment necessary to offer an appropriate experience. That same awareness is applied when working one on one with people. During individual yoga therapy sessions, the methods are again refined to meet that person’s needs. Supportive postures are employed, there is a more hands on component, and also a dialog develops which involves deep listening on my part. This dialog is Rogerian in nature and can be helpful in allowing a client to find answers for themselves. • Yoga Nidra is a guided relaxation technique adapted by Swami Satyananda Saraswati, and discussed in detail in his book of the same name (Yoga Nidra). There are currently many forms or brands of yoga nidra since it has become a sought after practice. This form can be practiced by anyone under the guidance of a trained instructor. In simple terms, Yoga Nidra practice develops the art of relaxation. This, in turn, helps in the reduction of stress. Like other practices, it can be done every day and the experience will deepen over time.