• Posted on September 20th, 2012 7:30:56 AM YogaGlo 3 comments

    Ask a Yogi You’ve followed them on Facebook. You might even take their classes in person once in awhile if they travel to or live in your city. But how well do you know our YogaGlo teachers? We’ve created a new series, Ask a Yogi, so you can learn more about them by asking questions you’ve always wanted to ask.

    From favorite poses and tips for beginners to deeper questions about how their practice has changed their worldview, our teachers will collectively answer a new question each week. If you have a questions that you’d like to “Ask a Yogi”, let us know in the comments or email us at hello@yogaglo.com and we’ll add your question to the list. Today’s Ask a Yogi question is:

     

    Has yoga changed the way you connect with your body?

    • Elena Brower: Thankfully, it’s given me the context to make that connection.
    • Kathryn Budig: I’ve learned to accept my body for how it is. My body has ebbed and flowed with weight and muscle, but my gauge is no longer how I look, but how I feel. If I feel good and strong on my mat, then my body is exactly as it should be.
    • Jason Crandell: When I played hockey and rode skateboards I was more than happy to subject my body to any amount of discomfort in order to accomplish a task. And, honestly, I still respect people that use their body in this way and I feel like I understand this type of drive. That said, my yoga practice has fundamental reversed this process. Now, my body and breath are the muse. They are the topic. They are the point of curiosity and yoga is just a way that I access and experience my body in a more complete and interesting way. When I run into physical limitations, my end range of motion or my various imbalances, I’m rarely disappointed because I’m no longer using my body to try to get something I don’t already have. And, at the end of the day, I’m practicing to feel better in the body that I actually have rather than trying to exchange my body for one that I want to have. This has taken a lot of pressure off and allowed me to savor my tight hamstrings and all.
    • Tiffany Cruikshank: I found yoga when I was 14 so for me it was a HUGE part of me getting comfortable in my body. I was teased a lot in school and yoga became a way for me to get to know myself and get comfortable with the awkwardness of life.  Even now my practice gives me a sense of comfort in my skin that translates into so much of my life, when I’m at ease in my body my mind is less reactive and I can appreciate the beauty of life. My practice has taught me that we all have insecurities and discomforts but that my imperfections are what make me human and that humanness is what helps me connect more deeply with myself & the people I love. That’s what its all about!
    • Steven Espinosa: I’ve always had a fairly good connection with my body because of dance. But yoga has helped me heal up many injuries from my past. It has also given me a greater understanding of why I might be hurting and provides me with the therapeutic tools of how to get out of pain. Of course, I still have the general aches and pains that come with being a human being in his early 50′s. Only now I know how to address those issues and prevent them from becoming chronic.
    • Marc Holzman: Before I did yoga, my relationship with my body was primarily dictated by vanity.  While it certainly got me to the gym, in hindsight this relationship was superficial and incomplete, fractured from mind and consciousness. I was “sculpting” my body in a non-integrated, non-holistic way. I wasn’t even aware of my breath! When I started doing yoga, I began to connect the disparate parts. Linking breath to action, connecting body to emotions. This was a monumental shift for me.  Through yoga I discovered Ayurveda and Acupuncture. I traded in the Met-Rx protein shakes for kale. And I slowly released the silly notion that sexiness, masculinity, and virility were somehow linked to a big, thick, muscular body.
    • Amy Ippoliti: I had no clue how my body lined up or how to breathe fully and deeply when I first started practicing. I also had no clue what my body was craving, what it needed, etc…yoga has been pretty tremendous in helping me listen more to what it needs rather than being on auto pilot.
    • Tara Judelle: In every way. Everything is more conscious.
    • Dice lida-Klein: Yoga has given me the tools to listen to my body more. Someways I may feel run down and all I need is a good legs up the wall pose (Viparita Karani) and some days I need a strong practice with many inversions and arm balances, but the most important thing is that I listen to what my body needs at that time and day.
    • Kia Miller: I modeled for 12 years in Europe as my first career. At the time my connection with my body was with my outer form – the way I looked. Yoga helped me to learn how to tune into my physical body from the inside out – it has healed me on so many levels.
    • Christina Sell: Well, I wrote a whole book about this called Yoga From the Inside Out: Making Peace with Your Body through Yoga and another one called My Body is a Temple: Yoga as a Path to Wholeness because this topic is such a big part of my story. But here is the thing- I started yoga when I was  21 and I am now 43 years old. So I have been practicing yoga over half of my life and it is somewhat hard to give a real “before yoga” and “after yoga” comparison as the practice of yoga has been with me throughout my entire adult life and has morphed and changed and grown with me over the years. Having said that, I think that yoga gives me tools to relate to my body with greater awareness, insight and skill. To the degree that I implement the tools that yoga gives me, I have a profound, meaningful and caring relationship with my body. In 12-step recovery they say, “It works if you work it” and I feel that way about yoga. Yoga, in and of itself,  hasn’t changed the way I connect with my body (let’s face it… you can do yoga violently with a ton of negative self-talk) but it has given me ways to change my connection so that I am more loving, more realistic and more accepting of myself and my body. Another thing I would like to add is that for me, having a yoga  practice is very empowering as well. Knowing that through time, attention, and practice I can overcome tendencies, counteract negative impressions, and work in harmony with my body and what it needs is the real boon of the practice.
    • Sianna Sherman: I now love my body with full respect, honor and recognition that I am divinity embodied. The practices reveal to me emanating radiance that is born from the churning in the very depth of me.
    • Stephanie Snyder: The most important thing yoga teaches us about the physical body is that it is impermanent and always changing. This means that we dont have to get overly attached. The flip side of this is that we have to keep the body in good working order so that we can do our practice at all and so that we can do whatever good work we are called to do. I love my body and Im so grateful that it works for me. Yoga and water = long life.
    • Jo Tastula: I think before yoga I was very dissociated from my body. There were parts of my body that I actually hated. Through yoga, my body has become my teacher, my home and my sanctuary.
    • Felicia Tomasko: Since I’ve practiced yoga my entire adult life, and began when I was a teenager, I can’t really imagine my life without it. It helps me know what to do when I just don’t feel right, when I’m achey or tired, when I need to reboot, refresh or revitalize. But even more importantly, I think about how the philosophies of Yoga and Ayurveda ask us to relate to our practice. What I frequently turn to, in my teaching and in relating to my body in my own life, is Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra from book II, number 46: sthira sukha asanam. I love the translation of sthira to mean steady, and sukha as sweet. In our Asana, Patanjali tells us, in every pose of our daily lives, in the way in which we relate to our bodies, may we do so with steadiness and sweetness. This is how yoga helps me relate to my body: how can I be both steady and approach the relationship I have with myself with sweetness?
    • Harshada Wagner: My body has really become my temple. It sounds cliché’ but it’s true. I experience the Sacred Presence in my body and connect to it first and foremost like that.
    How does yoga help connect you with your body?

     


  • Posted on September 7th, 2012 8:00:08 AM YogaGlo 3 comments

    Ask a YogiYou’ve practiced with them on YogaGlo. You’ve followed them on Facebook. You might even take their classes in person once in awhile if they travel to or live in your city. But how well do you know our YogaGlo teachers? We’ve created a new series, Ask a Yogi, so you can learn more about them by asking questions you’ve always wanted to ask.

    From favorite poses and tips for beginners to deeper questions about how their practice has changed their worldview, our teachers will collectively answer a new question each week. If you have a questions that you’d like to “Ask a Yogi”, let us know in the comments or email us at hello@yogaglo.com and we’ll add your question to the list. Today’s Ask a Yogi question is:

    What pose or sequence helps you wind down?

    • Elena Brower: Restoratives of any kind. Whatever my body wants, I do. And I love this one: http://bit.ly/KiZxDa
    • Kathryn Budig: Legs up the wall and a supported reclined Bound Angle Pose. They’re the best.
    • Jason Crandell: Cross-legged forward bend with my head on a bolster is a pretty good bet when I’m tired but need a little help settling my mind and nerves.
    • Tiffany Cruikshank: Virasana is great for me to start with because I spend a lot of the day on my feet so it compresses the tissues to revitalize my legs. Headstand is also a great one, it rejuvenates me mentally & physically especially if I’ve already practiced and I just need a booster.
    • Steven Espinosa: Balasana (Childs Pose) for sure. Supported Bridge (a block under my sacrum) is also good to relax. But mainly lower body stretches. Inner/outer hip openers, quads and hamstrings. I find that by doing this it helps release tension and relieve tightness in my lower back. It also allows my central nervous system to calm down before I go to sleep.
    • Marc Holzman: The 20-15-10 sequence: 20 long breaths in headstand, 15 long breaths in Vipariti Karani and 10 long breaths in shoulder stand
    • Amy Ippoliti: Supta Padangustasana is a favorite, to the side, the front and a twist.
    • Tara Judelle: I am a fan of forward bends. Sometimes I might do a five minute forward bend, a five minute headstand, and lie in Vipariti Karani (with legs up the wall), then sit for meditation. Total unwind reset.
    • Dice lida-Klein: A good sequence with forward folds and hip openers helps me unwind from a long day.Upavistha Konasana, Pigeon Prep, Janu Sirsasana, Paschimottonasana and some Virasana is always on my menu!
    • Noah Mazé: This depends on what is needed. Sometimes an energizing practice is the key.  Sometimes an inversion and forward bend class is what is needed.
    • Kia Miller: Forward bends or legs up the wall. My favorite is a relaxing bath, then meditation to cleanse and clear my mind!
    • Christina Sell: Shoulderstand. But I usually do my practice early in the day which helps “long and hectic” not take as much of a toll.
    • Sianna Sherman: Hanumanasana and Viparita Karani (legs up the wall)
    • Stephanie Snyder: I love a long pigeon or straddle forward fold. Anything that unwinds my back and hips is beneficial.
    • Jo Tastula: If I’m feeling particularly studios I’ll do a full supported legs up the wall pose (Viparita Karani) with bolster under the hips, strap around the shins and lavender eye pillow. Just thinking about it gets me sleepy…
    • Felicia Tomasko: I love love love an active practice, especially in the mornings. I love standing pose sequences, twists, and balancing, but when it’s time to wind down and the world has been buffeting me around, and I need to reset my nervous system, then it’s yin and/or restorative. Since I spend long hours at a computer, I need to cross-train my computer body. So in those cases, it’s a long yin-style forward fold. I have to set a timer, put on some music, and keep breathing. Then it’s a supine twist, some knees into the chest, and a bridge with a block series (one of my all-time favorite decompress the low back poses). Personally, I need yoga for the hands, since I type and text voraciously, which is one of the reasons I often include those sequences in my classes. And a steady standby for nervous system and low back reboot: legs up the wall with an eye pillow over my eyes.
    • Harshada Wagner: Honestly, a variation of Dandasana with bent legs on my couch.


  • Posted on August 31st, 2012 7:00:42 AM YogaGlo No comments

    Ask a YogiYou’ve practiced with them on YogaGlo. You’ve followed them on Facebook. You might even take their classes in person once in awhile if they travel to or live in your city. But how well do you know our YogaGlo teachers? We’ve created a new series, Ask a Yogi, so you can learn more about them by asking questions you’ve always wanted to ask.

    From favorite poses and tips for beginners to deeper questions about how their practice has changed their worldview, our teachers will collectively answer a new question each week. If you have a questions that you’d like to “Ask a Yogi”, let us know in the comments or email us at hello@yogaglo.com and we’ll add your question to the list. Today’s Ask a Yogi question is:

    How do you address specific body challenges in your yoga practice?

    • Elena Brower: Shoulders. Maha Bound Lotus.
    • Kathryn Budig: Upper back! Backbends have always been difficult for me. I used to hate them, but through years of practice and trial & error I love them. I adore the challenge and constant quest to find a bit more.
    • Jason Crandell: The gap between my teeth and my skin tone are the two things that are holding me back in my asana practice. I work on them with rubber bands and self-tanning gel every night.
    • Tiffany Cruikshank: Definitely my mind, the ability to settle into the practice mentally varies a lot from day to day. Usually my mat is my sanctuary where I welcome the place where my mind can just settle in, but some days are trickier than others for sure. If I can tune into my breath it usually creates a space for my mind to drop into.
    • Steven Espinosa: As a former dancer, I’ve always been pretty flexible. But even after all these years of practicing yoga my HIPS STILL GET TIGHT! I mean, they are far more open than they used to be for sure. But unless I keep them open they tighten up fast! But I’ve come to understand it’s just life. All the sitting, driving and working at computers we do make our hips tight. Biking, hiking, running, spinning, also tighten up the hips, thighs and psoas muscles. So whenever I practice, I make sure to include hip/thigh/hamstring stretches. Or else!
    • Marc Holzman: Shoulders. They’re strong but tight as hell. It’s tempting to force them open with brut strength, but actually just working with breath, softening, using props, and the wall yield the best results for me. I can turn any pose into a shoulder opener simply by placing my attention there.
    • Amy Ippoliti: It depends, I’ve got a lot of body parts and they each have their moments of taking center stage! It changes for me based on what is going on in my life. I try to take each challenge as they come, I’ll seek another teacher’s feedback on how I can align differently in poses to see if it helps, and I’ll also seek out bodyworkers, chiropractors and physical therapists to get to the core issue causing the challenge and then devote myself to getting better through their guidance and through my practice.
    • Tara Judelle: I broke my left arm when I was six in what was called a greenstick break (meaning the bones weren’t fully hard yet so the bone bent). They had to put me to sleep to reset the bone to wrestle my arm in to the desired position. Through body work I learned my fascia (muscle casing) wore the cast for 30 more years, so my left shoulder is always trying to figure things out. I am incredibly mindful of how I place my left collarbone, arm bone and scapula. I have learned through body mind centering that my bones can remember their original blueprint pre-injury, so I spend a lot of time trying to relearn the original structure.
    • Dice lida-Klein: My back body has always been tight. From my lower back to upper back, I’ve been quite inflexible. Only in the past 2 years have I begun to focus on opening my heart and exploring backbends. Achieving safe and effective backbends have been my main focus in my practice, so I make sure to go for safety over aesthetics.
    • Noah Mazé: In my practice, I seek out the challenge. Asana practice is about cultivating the range of possibilities. On any given day, something is tight, something is open. My hip flexors are often tight, so thigh stretches and backbends are regular features of my practice.
    • Kia Miller: My knees are both challenged in the last couple of years due to an injury. They have become my greatest teachers. I have learned to focus on what I can do and not to sweat what I cannot currently do. Every day is a new day and I am grateful as it makes me a better and more compassionate teacher.
    • Christina Sell: Well, I think the every part of my body is challenged and the longer I practice the more this seems to be the case. The whole thing with yoga is that as soon as we can master a basic pose we start looking at harder postures to perform. So while my hips are open enough for a good triangle posture, I want to do deeper postures than that and so I feel like they are still tight! It is a certain kind of madness, really. (I mean that with a sense of humor.) What do I do to address it? I keep practicing. I have a handful of things I do to release my psoas when it is bound. I a have routine to open my lower legs and feet when my legs are tight, I have great shoulder and chest opening protocol, and I have endless tricks for opening up my upper back. Really, it just all depends on what I am working on that day and what openings are required for the postures on my agenda and all that has to be balanced with what state my body is in that day as well.
    • Sianna Sherman: My mind. I attune my mind through proper breathing, meditation, mantra, contemplation and asana that balances steadiness and ease.
    • Stephanie Snyder: I have an old injury in my lumbar spine. I have to be mindful of extension and flexion in my lower back. Also carrying my baby around keeps my shoulders pretty full of love (read: tight ass shouldahs)
    • Jo Tastula: Hip flexors. Oye, they are perpetually tight!  I like to warm up with sun saluations ‘c’ (surya namaskar c) which has a lot of lunges in it. I also surrender to the fact that I am naturally a forward bender and not a back bender.
    • Felicia Tomasko: I’m not necessarily one of those naturally bendy people. And my back only bends so far back, so I don’t expect to be on a magazine cover rocking out some crazy poses. I like to think about how, through practice, I can cultivate a sense of overall strength, overall ease, overall flexibility. I do work with backbends, even though my temptation is sometimes to avoid them. I ease into them slowly, work carefully with my abdominal muscles, and focus on extension rather than compression. My shoulders are also not so in love with repeated Chaturangas. I’m not sure if I did something, but if I overdo it, I’ll feel a twinge (and sometimes worse) around my left deltoid, so I’m an every-other-Vinyasa knees-to-the-floor, engaging the abdominals, kind of yogini. I want to be still doing my practice when I’m 80, 90, 100, and beyond. Speaking of which, one of these days maybe I’ll pop into headstand, but it took me years (and some dedicated Iyengar and Sivananda teachers) to learn how to do headstand in the center of the room. Like all of us, inversions take some getting used to.
    • Harshada Wagner: The physical part. My asana practice is only a small fraction of what it was 20 years ago when I was an asana teacher. I have some old knee injuries that I know how to work around. I find much of the yoga these days to be super athletic – too much so for me. I like to do very mellow sequences that help my spine and help to balance my energies.

    Specific yoga poses to address specific body parts

     


  • Posted on August 24th, 2012 8:30:36 AM YogaGlo 1 comment

    Ask a YogiYou’ve practiced with them on YogaGlo. You’ve followed them on Facebook. You might even take their classes in person once in awhile if they travel to or live in your city. But how well do you know our YogaGlo teachers? We’ve created a new series, Ask a Yogi, so you can learn more about them by asking questions you’ve always wanted to ask.

    From favorite poses and tips for beginners to deeper questions about how their practice has changed their worldview, our teachers will collectively answer a new question each week. If you have a questions that you’d like to “Ask a Yogi”, let us know in the comments or email us at hello@yogaglo.com and we’ll add your question to the list. Today’s Ask a Yogi question is:

    How has your yoga practice helped you deal with fear?

    • Elena Brower: Every day just being with myself. I find I’m most afraid to just be quiet.
    • Kathryn Budig: It’s taught me that love is the answer to everything—how I approach postures, how I remind myself to step back when I’m tired or injured and that my reactions on the mat are a reflection of the interactions in my life. Choosing love is the opposite of fear, and yoga has shown me that fear when only grip you if you let it.
    • Jason Crandell: My practice has helped me overcome some of my fears by teaching me to look at me fears with curiosity instead of panic. I’m able to steady my mind and breath a bit more when fears arise and this makes me less likely to pile on and conflagrate them. It’s also helped me with some of my fears by teaching me the skills of self-soothing. I’m better at letting go and becoming quiet than I once was. That said, I still experience fear, insecurity, doubt and the whole gamut of the human experience. I do not expect these experiences to completely go aware—nor, necessarily do I want them to. I just want to see the fear more quickly, understand it more completely, and manage it with more sanity.
    • Tiffany Cruikshank: The beauty of yoga is that it forces us to be present in our lives. If we have lingering injuries it forces us to deal with them, if we are afraid, it exposes it, it opens us in a way that we are forced to look deeply. The fear that comes up in a posture mirrors the fear we see in our lives so when we learn how to stay with it long enough to release it we find a power that we can grab onto in our own lives as well.
    • Steven Espinosa: Yoga has helped me to see the bigger picture. It’s helped me to believe in something deeper and greater within myself. Yoga has taught me how to listen and follow my heart. It has helped give me confidence that I am good and have value and worth. Yoga has helped me to Trust in Grace. Oh, and as far the fear goes? I still have it. But it doesn’t paralyze me or keep from doing things anyways. Because I know it’s going to be okay.
    • Marc Holzman: In Hatha yoga, through an accumulation of years of inversions and scary partner poses, I’ve built up a sort of  “courage equity” that stabilizes me. God bless AcroYoga. In meditation, going very, very deep requires a certain degree of surrender that equates to a “mini death.” This is difficult to describe.  To shed and melt a familiar, tightly held, superficial identity in order to plunge into a sphere of deep, unbounded, consciousness, requires courage. I’m a control freak. Letting go still scares me. With each meditation I learn to surrender.
    • Amy Ippoliti: Yoga has helped me overcome fear through experience mostly. Whether is has been tapping into the breath, dealing with conflict in the community, surviving a face plant out of a pose, or working through pain & injury. Yoga has taught me about resilience and courage to move through fear. As scary as it might be, The practice has taught me that I will bounce back.
    • Tara Judelle: Today, after driving around the island of Santorini by myself, on a four wheeler, running over lava rocks to hang out in my secret cave spot at Amoudi beach before my last sunset, I realized I am here because I feel free to live my live as I dream it. This is the outcome of fifteen years of yoga practice that has taught me, the only thing that stands in the way are my own blocks. Starting with the smallest unknowns (Can I do this pose that scares me, can I visualize the possibility that one day I will do that pose) and growing to all life challenges, what we call yoga is realizing we are a piece of the infinite. The philosophy of yoga set up good, ideas, that were simply ideas until they have become the small success that lead to a drastic change of life.
    • Dice lida-Klein: My practice began early on with lots of arm balances and inversions. Though these require strength, agility and fearlessness, they also require a lot of mental strength as well. Postures are a great analogy for life. Sometimes you have to go beyond your own self-imposed boundaries, making the seemingly impossible possible.
    • Noah Mazé: It hasn’t. One does not overcome fear. Fear is one of the experiences of being human.  My yoga practice is not about transcending this human experience, but rather becoming more real and authentic and more skillful in every experience.  For me, the question is about empowerment or victimization; how does fear empower you, how does fear victimize you?  My yoga practice has helped me use fear in a skillful and empowering way.
    • Kia Miller: My biggest fear was always speaking in front of people. Teaching has enabled me to find my voice as a person and a teacher.
    • Christina Sell: All of the various practices of yoga have helped me gain awareness of my emotions and to see them for what they are. I do not know that I would ever claim to have “overcome fear” but what I can say is that yoga- most specifically my meditation and pranayama practices- has helped me see my fear for what it is and to put a break in my thoughts so that I do not always believe what the fear is telling me. My experience in yoga has more stories that go like this than anything else: “Nothing really changed except my relationship to myself, the feeling, the limitation, etc. and in that everything changed.” For instance, I still have anxiety and fear arise, but how it affects me and how I respond to it has shifted considerably over the years.
    • Sianna Sherman: The practices help me to recognize that while my fear might be present, there is something greater than my fear speaking to my heart simultaneously. It’s this expanded recognition that ushers me through the gateway of my fear and into a greater arena of what’s possible when I align my heart’s desire with knowledge and skillful action. The practices reveal to me from inside out the genuine authentic presence of me which is wiling to extend an open hand to my fears and help me remember that I am source energy.
    • Stephanie Snyder: The most important way that the practice helps me overcome fear is by dissolving the idea of separateness. It reconnects me to the whats real and keeps me on solid ground. It neutralizes fear and doubt and enhances clarity and steadiness.
    • Jo Tastula: I remember being terrified of handstands. Then after a lot of practice I got the handstand, but was terrified to do it away from the wall. Then after a lot of practice I got it away from the wall, but was terrified to jump into it. I’ve had this real honest working relationship with handstands and have witnessed myself grow through determination and effort. In my second DVD that I’ve just finished filming, I jumped into a handstand balancing on this wooden board wedged in between two rocks. I felt pretty darn pleased with myself.
    • Felicia Tomasko: Every day my practice helps me overcome fear. Not by making the fear go away (I wish and sometimes I still have to pull it together), but through steadiness, commitment, remembering that I have made a commitment. Reminding myself that I don’t have to know everything or do everything (handstand still scares me—a lot), but I have to be willing to be in the room. And be willing to sing. In moments when I’m spinning without the earth beneath my feet, I remember and recite the first mantra I ever learned in my studies of Yoga and Ayurveda—the Mahamrityunjaya Mantra. The name of the mantra means the great victory over death—and really, the great victory is over fear. This is what the mantra asks: may we be released from fear. I wish I had something more concrete to say. I think along with all of us, I face fear every single day.
    • Harshada Wagner: Because I experience everything as a kind of illusion, and I also feel a deep connection with everything, the fear is just not what it used to be. Because I know my true Self, which can’t be harmed or diminished, I am generally not afraid. When fear does arise, I don’t believe it. I see it for what it is. When there is awareness of danger- which is different than fear- I am able to address the danger without the shakiness and stupidness caused by fear.


  • Posted on August 17th, 2012 8:30:24 AM YogaGlo 1 comment

    Ask a YogiYou’ve practiced with them on YogaGlo. You’ve followed them on Facebook. You might even take their classes in person once in awhile if they travel to or live in your city. But how well do you know our YogaGlo teachers? We’ve created a new series, Ask a Yogi, so you can learn more about them by asking questions you’ve always wanted to ask.

    From favorite poses and tips for beginners to deeper questions about how their practice has changed their worldview, our teachers will collectively answer a new question each week. If you have a questions that you’d like to “Ask a Yogi”, let us know in the comments or email us at hello@yogaglo.com and we’ll add your question to the list. Today’s Ask a Yogi question is:

    How did you become a yoga teacher?

    • Elena Brower: Cyndi Lee invited me to her OM training. I was smitten.
    • Kathryn Budig: It was a total accidental career. I moved to Los Angeles to pursue my acting career and learn how to teach yoga on the side to keep me afloat in-between auditions. I soon realized I was less than enamored with the grind of Hollywood and in love with yoga. My mentor, Maty Ezraty saw something special in me and put me on the Yogaworks schedule right after my teacher training. The rest is history!
    • Jason Crandell: In 1997, I had just graduated with a philosophy degree and was in a Master’s program for International Studies and Political Philosophy. I was bored to death and teeming with anxiety about the future—and I didn’t want to be intellectually competitive for a living which ruled out my trajectory as an academic. My teacher at the time, Josh Feinbloom, asked me to take over his introduction to ashtanga classes. I was working nights at a warehouse and I thought, well, teaching yoga has to be better than this. I was right—but I was also in over my head. I had no training whatsoever (which was not uncommon at the time) so I made a bee line to Rodney Yee’s 2-yr teacher-training program where I felt at home and was taught the best way possible.
    • Tiffany Cruikshank: I started teaching because at the time there weren’t really any studios and very few teachers. I started out teaching my friends and when I moved off to college I decided I wanted to share my passion for yoga since there weren’t really any teachers there. Once I started teaching I fell in love with it, I knew I found my calling. My parents always thought I would eventually quit yoga and get a “real” job…(lol) 16+ years later I’m still teaching and loving it more and more!
    • Steven Espinosa: Honestly, I never intended to teach yoga. It happened quite by accident. I was working behind the front desk at a yoga studio. Checking in classes, sweeping floors, folding blankets and cleaning toilets. I was falling in love with yoga and really very content just to be of service. Chop wood, carry water, so to speak. Then one day, the owners of the studio said they were going to conduct their very first teacher training. Would you like to be involved, they asked? I said, sure. Why not? Sounds like fun! So I did. But never really considered actually teaching. Cut to: 3 months later and the day after teacher training ended I was asked to sub a class. I was terrified, but said yes. After the class was over I was offered a regular spot on the schedule. That’s a true story. I have come to believe that my teachers saw something in me that I didn’t see in myself. That was 12 years ago now.
    • Marc Holzman: Here’s the chronology: In 1999 I moved to LA from NYC to continue my acting career. I took my first yoga class with Bryan Kest and fell in love with it. I knew within the first 5 classes that I wanted to teach it. The studio where I wanted to do a teacher training was offering an expensive program that I couldn’t afford, so I passed because I was flat broke. One week before the training was to begin, in a stroke of divine intervention, I won $50,000 in the lottery and enrolled. I’m not kidding. The rest is history. I’d like to take this moment to formally thank grace and the California State Lottery for helping me fulfill my destiny.
    • Amy Ippoliti: Someone’s belief in me…I had been practicing for 11 years (since the age of 16).  I applied for a teacher training with Cyndi Lee to go deeper and learn about yoga philosophy. On the first night I told Cyndi that I was only there to go deeper but did not feel I was ready to teach. She looked at me and said something to the effect of “STFU, you are going to teach!” and from that moment on, I rose to the challenge.
    • Tara Judelle: I trained as a director for theater originally. I loved how people could use their bodies as instruments to tell stories about humanity. It incorporated everything I ever wanted to do. I was a writer/director, and thought that making films would help change people’s lives. When I named my production company Kali Films, I didn’t realize that the Goddess would make everything true.  Arsonists set fire to the film set after 3 weeks of filming. I had my first out of body experience. Later while editing the film, I decided to take a teacher training to get back into yoga. The first week of the training was 9/11. That week I realized I wouldn’t be making films anymore. If my life could end in a moment, what had I done to contribute to the greater whole?  From directing and working with actors I had learned to and loved working with people. Collaborating in movement and using one’s body to access deeper places of feeling, is all I really ever wanted to do. Teaching yoga has become the most creative endeavor, that more fulfills my deepest longing.
    • Dice lida-Klein: I love yoga. Yoga has allowed me to discover and uncover who I am and who I’m becoming. I wanted to share what I love with others in hopes that they too could find something within their yoga practice. Whatever it is, yoga can help you get there.
    • Kia Miller: I have been practicing since I was 15. I wanted to teach for a long time before I did the teacher training. Finally, when Chuck Miller and Maty Ezraty were about to leave Yogaworks I took their final teacher training. It was a defining moment for me. I was working in TV production at the time earning a lot of money, I knew that it was ultimately not satisfying and that I wanted to be doing something where I was going to be able to give back and be of service. I also wanted to be in the kind of work where you find you have more and more to offer as you get older rather than the other way around!
    • Christina Sell: I had taught fitness for years and loved practicing yoga but never thought of teaching yoga until a friend of mine opened a yoga studio in Prescott, Arizona and asked me if I would come and teach at her studio. My primary teacher at the time was Manouso Manos, a Senior Iyengar Instructor. I went to him and asked him if it was okay if I started teaching since I was not sure that I was ready. He told me :”Everybody starts before they are ready; that is part of the process. As a new teacher make sure that 1) you do not teach postures that you can not do and 2) you maintain a close relationship with a senior teacher so you have someone you can ask questions as you go along.” I followed his advice and found that I loved teaching yoga mostly because for the 90 minutes I was teaching, I would forget about myself a bit and just give myself to the work of teaching. Teaching yoga  became a wonderful “break” from the stress I had at the time. Another side note to my story is that my husband and I owned a coffee shop at the time I first started teaching yoga. In order to teach my two classes on Tuesday and Thursday mornings, I would have to replace myself at the shop and pay someone to work for me. I made $20 in each class and paid over $60 to be gone from the shop for the morning. So for my first year of teaching, I literally paid for the opportunity  to learn to teach. I tell that as part of my story because I think its good for new teachers to know that the craft of teaching yoga is an investment on many levels!
    • Sianna Sherman: The deepest desire in my heart is to serve real transformation in humanity. Through the transformative practices of yoga, I have journeyed from the pits of self-loathing in my late teens to true self love and honest embrace of my whole being. I wish for every single one of us to love ourselves fully and see the expansive truth of our marrow essence nature. Yoga is a pathway of love, transformation and the most profound recognition of Self. My dedication as a yogini is in service to humanity.
    • Jo Tastula: My first yoga teacher advised me NOT to become a yoga teacher. Basically he told me not to give up my day job. I took that advice to heart, so when I finally did do a teacher training years later, it was to deepen my practice. Directly after the teacher training however, I was asked to teach and the rest just fell into place effortlessly. I’m extremely blessed that my first teacher guided me to build a strong foundation of practice. It’s only through practice that you have something to teach.
    • Felicia Tomasko: My first awareness of Yoga came about when I was a high school student in the small town of Bethel, Connecticut. At the time, there weren’t any yoga classes held either in my school or in the town itself (that I was aware of, in any case), so my primary inspiration for beginning my practice came from books. Richard Hittleman’s Yoga: 28 Day Exercise Plan was my first foray into trying it out, along with books on kids’  yoga (complete with playful illustrations) I checked out from the local library. After some scouring, I found a meditation center around 40 minutes away, in Woodbury, run by a group of students of Dhyanyogi and Sri Anandi Ma.(A few years later, in Boulder, I received my first meditation initiation with Sri Anandi Ma). Then it was at the college Rec center, at the University of Colorado-Boulder, where I took my first formal classes. My first group classes were from an Iyengar teacher, in the mat-covered walls and floor of the wrestling room, making it a forgiving environment for learning headstand (covered in class #2). From the first day, the first pages, my first personal practice, I loved yoga. I loved the philosophical ideas written about transcendentalism by America’s first yogis, Emerson and Thoreau, whom I read voraciously in high school. I loved the expansive ideas espoused in my high school comparative religions class. I first became a vegetarian in high school (and in college, a vegan) after reading Diet for a New America by John Robbins, when it was first released. I think I was born a yogi. But becoming a yoga teacher happened when one of my yoga teachers, Shar Lee, a bodyworker/brilliant therapeutic teacher/practitioner of Tibetan cranial massage/and more, was hosting a teacher training over a nine-month period of time. I had every excuse as to why I couldn’t possibly attend, and to every reason I stated why I just couldn’t do it, she had a ready answer. Finances? Payment plan. Time: it’s over nine months, we’ll work it out. Later? You must do it now; this is the group of nine other people with whom you must study. I did. And I never looked back.
    • Harshada Wagner: I knew from an early age that my calling was to be close to God and to help connect other people to God. I surely wasn’t going to sign up for an organized religion. That wouldn’t have been real for me. I discovered yoga and the whole wider world of yoga and that fit both my personal quest and also my calling to serve. Meditation, I find, is a way for people to connect directly to God. There is no belief, no dogma, just direct experience. Everyone is hungry for love, and meditation is a way to connect to most reliable source of love.

    Become a Yoga Teacher


  • Posted on August 10th, 2012 7:30:38 AM YogaGlo No comments

    Ask a YogiYou’ve practiced with them on YogaGlo. You’ve followed them on Facebook. You might even take their classes in person once in awhile if they travel to or live in your city. But how well do you know our YogaGlo teachers? We’ve created a new series, Ask a Yogi, so you can learn more about them by asking questions you’ve always wanted to ask.

    From favorite poses and tips for beginners to deeper questions about how their practice has changed their worldview, our teachers will collectively answer a new question each week. If you have a question that you’d like to “Ask a Yogi”, let us know in the comments or email us at hello@yogaglo.com and we’ll add your question to the list. Today’s Ask a Yogi question is:

    What surprises you most about yoga?

    • Elena Brower: How delicious it always is, every single time.
    • Kathryn Budig: That it is always there. Regardless of age, energy, injuries, time, moods—it is always there for us. It’s simply if we’re willing to let it in.
    • Jason Crandell: I’m not sure if I should say that this surprises me or amazes me, but I’m awed by the fact that nearly everyone—no matter what they experience during class—feels better after class. Everyone. And, even more, everyone feels—more or less—like everyone else feels after class. There’s always this very even, balanced energetic tone across the room when practice is over. The person that does the hardest arm-balances feels about the same as the person whose feet never left the floor all class; the person that had the most restriction in their backbends feels about the same as the person that looked like an image of pure perfection in each backbend. Everyone feels about the same as everyone else and they all feel better. It’s a pretty amazing experience.
    • Tiffany Cruikshank: Even after almost 2 decades of practice it never ceases to amaze me the extent of which yoga affects us and how it changes peoples lives. I love getting stories from students about how it has transformed their life.
    • Steven Espinosa: It never ceases to amaze me how you can walk into a yoga class feeling one way, and in an hour and a half or so, you can walk out feeling completely transformed. And the best part is, it’s legal!
    • Marc Holzman: That after all these years there still ARE surprises!
    • Amy Ippoliti: Yoga never fails to make me just a bit more sparkly then I was before I started.
    • Tara Judelle: That it is infinite, vast, and includes everything. My yoga is the way I treat others, the way I think about things, the way I conduct business, my capacity to feel, and my desire to connect to collective. The postures themselves are simply one arena for practice, a good one, but only one. I gave up being a writer/director of films to teach yoga, because it seemed to me the only thing I couldn’t possibly ever “succeed” at.  There is no end game. If I knew the wormhole that would open when I stepped into my first yoga class, I’m sure, I would have gone there much much sooner.
    • Kia Miller: Yoga, for me, offers the direct path to our inner truth and vastness. I grew up in the Falkland Islands in a very remote place with very few people (2,800 total in the whole islands), just lots of land and animals. There was a natural peace and connection to the rhythms of life. Stillness and simplicity were inherent in my life there. I find the practice of yoga takes me into that same simple quiet place within, it tunes me into what one of my teachers calls ‘the thrill of the subtle.’ When I first started practicing, the only stillness I enjoyed was savasana after a long hard class. Now my practice has matured – it is the sweet moments between poses that surprise me, where I experience such profound moments of YOGA, of union of mind, body and spirit. Here it is possible to sense the interconnectedness of all life. There is nothing we cannot achieve once connected on a regular basis to the deep inner wellspring of our true identity, our SAT NAM.
    • Christina Sell: I am not really surprised by yoga, truth be told. I am sometimes a bit surprised by the people who practice yoga! For instance, I am very interested in how many different kinds of people practice yoga and in the variety of styles that those various people practice and how much everyone really loves the yoga they do and yet how different their actual relationship to it is, person to person. So as we all sit around and talk about yoga, I find it surprising we are not more aware of the fact we are often using the same words to talk about something that is very different person to person. Of course, these various differences have long been addressed in the tradition with some schools being aimed devotionally, others intellectually, and still others physically, etc. Personal temperament and preference has always had a place in terms of how one might enter the tradition and through what door one might go to get to the heart of the matter. There are also lots of things that delight me about yoga- like how deep the philosophical dimensions reach and how that interacts with our experience of our physicality and how these different layers are being affected whether we talk about them or not, and how much better I always feel after an asana practice and how I never get tired of teaching people to do postures they didn’t know they could do and so on on, but those are not surprising, just delightful. It’s a good question. I am actually rarely surprised in life and that alone gives me something to think about!
    • Sianna Sherman: Most surprising… hmmm… There’s always more and I’m forever a beginner. AND the more I learn, the more I turn to the essence of my heart. All the teachings that resonant with me most are a call to the power of my own heart and the global heart. The learning field of yoga is infinite,  yet it all comes back to the integration of my whole being in the core of my heart. And I must say, every day I’m  surprised that my hamstrings can feel tight the next morning even after all these years. What a comical gift of humility this is!
    • Jo Tastula: Yoga is slippery… like an avocado seed. Just when you think you have it in your fingertips, it slips right out! From the outside it seems rather constant, but the truth is it’s constantly changing and immensely challenging. That’s very surprising… because you’d think after 15 years I’d have worked it out by now?!
    • Harshada Wagner: In asana practice, it surprises me how much of a difference it makes to pay attention to subtle detail. Sequencing, breathing, intention, all these things can make the difference between mental serenity and mental aggravation after practice. For yoga in the broader sense, it surprises me just how ordinary God is. And how wonderful.

    yoga


  • Posted on August 3rd, 2012 8:00:32 AM YogaGlo 2 comments

    Ask a YogiYou’ve practiced with them on YogaGlo. You’ve followed them on Facebook. You might even take their classes in person once in awhile if they travel to or live in your city. But how well do you know our YogaGlo teachers? We’ve created a new series, Ask a Yogi, so you can learn more about them by asking questions you’ve always wanted to ask.

    From favorite poses and tips for beginners to deeper questions about how their practice has changed their worldview, our teachers will collectively answer a new question each week. If you have a question that you’d like to “Ask a Yogi” let us know in the comments or email us at hello@yogaglo.com and we’ll add your question to the list. Today’s Ask a Yogi question is:

    What's your go-to pose for a quick hit of energy?

    • Elena Brower: Shavasana
    • Kathryn Budig: Handstand. There’s nothing like flipping yourself upside down to change up the mood!
    • Jason Crandell: There’s a saying in England that tea calms your nerves when you’re agitated and wakes you up when you need a lift. I feel the same way about Down Dog.
    • Tiffany Cruikshank: Headstand, it’s like a shot of espresso. It doesn’t usually require a lot of flexibility or warm up to get into and it can be held for several minutes to get a nice shot of energy as well as invigorate the mind.
    • Steven Espinosa: Without a doubt, Handstand. I sometimes tell the story about when I used to work in an office. In the afternoon when I would get that post lunch crash, I would go into my bosses meeting room and flip upside down into a Handstand. Not only did it help clear my head and wake me up, it also helped remind me of the important things in my life like yoga.
    • Marc Holzman: 1-minute timed Handstand (hands 10-12 inches from the wall) with my butt on the wall. It’s really a handstand/shoulder opener/backbend in one. Big shakti-blast.
    • Amy Ippoliti: 911 Handy! (That would be an emergency Handstand).
    • Tara Judelle: Pranayama and Handstands.
    • Kia Miller: Ego Eradicator – it is my go-to pose. Period! …. And of course any backbend especially with Breath of Fire.
    • Christina Sell: If my mind is tired, I do Headstand. If I need energy because my body is tired I do Shoulder Stand, Plow or legs-up-the-wall.
    • Sianna Sherman: Ahhh.. Hanumanasana! My most favorite pose and it can shape shift into multiple forms. If I feel the need to turn in for a rejuvenation effect, then I fold forward. If I want to clear my inner organs, I turn it into a twist. If I want the bathing of my heart, it becomes a backbend. If I need a refreshing tonic for my mind, I flip upside down into Handstand or Headstand with Hanumanasana. And all the while my hips are opening, my body is grounded and every part of me is renewed in a few mindful breaths.
    • Stephanie Snyder: Definitely Kapalabhati breath and backbends or an inversion.
    • Jo Tastula: There’s nothing like a Handstand to shake things up. I learned to do Handstands as an adult not as a kid. So I still have a healthy dose of adrenaline kick-in when ever I kick-up!
    • Harshada Wagner: Honestly, I do 10-20 vigorous push-ups if I need a hit of physical energy. Urdvahastasana (upward arm extenstion) with fingers interlaced, palms up is a good one too.

    Favorite Yoga Poses


  • Posted on July 27th, 2012 8:00:43 AM YogaGlo No comments

    Ask a YogiYou’ve practiced with them on YogaGlo. You’ve followed them on Facebook. You might even take their classes in person once in awhile if they travel to or live in your city. But how well do you know our YogaGlo teachers? We’ve created a new series, Ask a Yogi, so you can learn more about them by asking questions you’ve always wanted to ask.

    From favorite poses and tips for beginners to deeper questions about how their practice has changed their worldview, our teachers will collectively answer a new question each week. If you have a question that you’d like to “Ask a Yogi” let us know in the comments or email us at hello@yogaglo.com and we’ll add your question to the list. Today’s Ask a Yogi question is:

    How has your yoga practice changed over time?

    • Elena Brower: It’s gotten more concentrated, focused, relaxing and healing. Simultaneously. And way less competitive.
    • Kathryn Budig: I used to be an incredibly dedicated Ashtanga yogi with immense strength. I’m still strong and dedicated, but much softer. I don’t feel the urgency that I once felt and find that the poses and practice itself is more enjoyable to me now.
    • Jason Crandell: My practice has gotten softer, smoother, and more fine-tuned over the years. I did my practice like I played hockey and rode skateboards for the first few years. And, although this was gratifying in ways, I’m finding myself more intrigued by what is still and quiet in my body and mind than what is moving.
    • Tiffany Cruikshank: A ton and not at all. It’s always like coming home to myself so in that way it hasn’t changed at all, but my personal practice is constantly changing to reflect where I’m at physically & mentally and I think it’s important to have the adaptability as a yogi to be able to do that. Otherwise we find ourselves injured or exhausted because we continue to force ourselves to do what we think we “should” do instead of what we need. This is where Satya (truthfulness) becomes so important to the practice in being truthful to ourselves in what we need at any given moment.
    • Steven Espinosa: I’m much more gentle with myself now. Back in the day, it was all about learning how to do the “hard” stuff. I would push myself sometimes to the point of injury. I took myself and my yoga very seriously. But now, as I am in my 50′s, my body is changing and I try to respect that. Therefore, my approach to the practice is also shifting. I find that doing the most basic and simple poses can be challenging in a whole new way. These days it’s all about moving my body, breathing deeply and most importantly, having fun.
    • Marc Holzman: Over the past few years three major shifts in my life have informed a new focus on what I label as “my practice:” A heart surgery, turning 50 and discovering what it truly means to meditate. I LOVE a good, hot, powerful asana practice, but those days of 108 drop backs are far behind me; my body simply doesn’t do the things it did fifteen years ago. Am I continuing to fall in love with my life? Am I meditating daily? This is Yoga for me now;  first and foremost my Hatha practice (and teaching) must support this.
    • Amy Ippoliti: When I started at age 16, I was really just getting used to all the poses, learning about all the crazy ways my body could bend. In my early 20′s that turned into more of a desire to become proficient and challenge myself by finding more challenging styles of yoga and more sophisticated teachers. From there I did my first teacher training  - so for many years my focus was all about learning alignment, meditation, pranayama, therapeutics and yoga philosophy. As a teacher, I worked on advancing my own personal practice, setting goals with my practice buddies to achieve certain poses, doing mantra and increasing my morning ritual of sitting practice. Then after a divorce, I threw myself into cardiovascular exercise to blow off steam, since getting on my mat and into my body as often as I had been doing became too painful emotionally, so I reduced my practice a lot.  I paid the price physically though, my “yoga body” atrophied, old injuries showed up again, and I turned to functional fitness and a personal trainer to get my muscles back in shape. I increased my mat time again. Now I am still not all the way recovered from that break actually, but am enjoying my practice just where it is. Teaching on YogaGlo has actually been so helpful in getting me more amped up about advancing my practice again, vs. just coasting. So I thank YogaGlo and everyone who practices for the enthusiasm and joy of doing this practice together. We are so lucky to have each other and I feel so fortunate to get to practice with my colleagues on YogaGlo too!
    • Tara Judelle: My practice changes and continues to change every year. If I were to categorize the main change, I would say that it has has moved from a muscle, bone practice to one that includes the organs, the glands, the fluids and greater ease and fluidity, than simple acrobatics and rigidity. There is an increasing desire to move with ease and three dimensional awareness rather than strict concepts of poses. There is also in my personal practice a greater bridge between dance and creativity and meditation than the earlier desire simply to achieve hard postures.
    • Kia Miller: My practice shifts as often as the seasons of the earth and the seasons of my life.  I like to stay sensitive to what my body is calling for in the moment and aware of what I may need verses what I habitually go for. This is the wisdom of many years of practice.  Sometimes I need the sweaty packed class to work it out of every cell of my body, sometimes I need a little tender sweet Yin class or an energetic Kriya. My constant companions in this season of life are a daily practice of breathwork and meditation with a physical practice that feel nurturing. For me, sometimes strong can feel nurturing!
    • Christina Sell: My practice has always been changing. While many of the poses stay the same my bodies’ ability shifts, my schedule is always in flux and my interests in the postures changes continually. I have been practicing since 1991 and so I have moved through so many cycles of practice – both interiorly and exteriorly. There is all the usual stuff now with aging- my body needs more time to recover, misalignments create tweaks more quickly, I have to work harder to go against some genetic body tendencies and so on. My metabolism has shifted a bit and all these things affect my physical practice. I am still interested in advanced postures, but I am a bit more sober in pursuing them than I used to be. My pranayama, mantra and meditation practices are more interesting to me now than they used to be and I am more aware of my energy than I used to be and how things I do and do not do affect me on an energetic level. I travel a lot right now and have little outer routines and so I am really enjoying Bikram Yoga practice. The consistency and predictability that the repetitive approach provides for me is very grounding and stabilizing. During times when I was more stable – for instance, when I was running a studio and teaching 15 classes a week in the same place for six years, I enjoyed being more creative in my practice. So all these things are variables and part of the ongoing conversation of “what to do when I roll out my mat” and how that interfaces with the outer circumstances of my life.
    • Sianna Sherman: My practice has undergone so many renovations and innovations along the way. It’s been a twisting, turning trunk of Ganapathi ever since I began more than 22 years ago. The steadiness and exploration of the practices have been a vibrant force in my life, and the multifaceted jewel of yoga continually reveals itself to me through the many possible forms of practice. I began with a focus on meditation and a little asana to support the meditation jewel. I yearned to fall in love with myself and attune my mind in a positive way. Meditation has been the very core of my practices from the beginning. Next I turned my awareness to the therapeutic aspects of asana and learned in great detail clear biomechanical alignment to support the health of the body. During these years, there emerged a deep interest in pranayama and bandhas, and I practiced in a way that focused on these jewels. I had been learning from the classical philosophy of yoga and several years into this, I was ignited by the teachings of Tantra. I then devoted myself to studying the texts and being in satsang with masterful teachers. Now I practice an integration of all these forms and my awareness is growing ever more in relationship to chanting, mantra, mudra, mythology and dream yoga. I listen deeply to know how my being wishes to embody the practices and I’m very much devoted to all of these practices as embodied life in relationship to my family, friends and expanded community.
    • Stephanie Snyder: My practice is never the same because I’m never the same. Yoga rises up to serve me as I am each day and I’m so amazed by how consistently and profoundly I am supported by the practice. I can say that my idea of what a ‘yoga practice’ is has both loosened up and become more sophisticated over the years.
    • Jo Tastula: My practice has gone through many different evolutions which range from the purely physical (high sweat and grunt) to the sublimely meditative (zero sweat and eyes half open). Now I’m not attached to it being any one thing, so I guess that’s probably the biggest change.
    • Harshada Wagner: It used to be more structured, more formal, and more compartmentalized. There used to be a specific thing I would do in a specific way and in a certain place at a certain time, etc. Over time, the yoga has become more subtle. The goal of the yoga is more readily accessible in my inner being now. It takes less “intervention”. These days it’s more about subtle shifts of attention and ways of being.

    Ask a Yogi Amy Ippoliti


  • Posted on July 20th, 2012 8:00:40 AM YogaGlo 1 comment

    Ask a YogiYou’ve practiced with them on YogaGlo. You’ve followed them on Facebook. You might even take their classes in person once in awhile if they travel to or live in your city. But how well do you know our YogaGlo teachers? We’ve created a new series, Ask a Yogi, so you can learn more about them by asking questions you’ve always wanted to ask.

    From favorite poses and tips for beginners to deeper questions about how their practice has changed their worldview, our teachers will collectively answer a new question each week. If you have a question that you’d like to “Ask a Yogi” let us know in the comments or email us at hello@yogaglo.com and we’ll add your question to the list. Today’s Ask a Yogi question is:

    How often do you practice other styles of yoga?

    • Elena Brower: All day long. I’m an official, proud hybrid.
    • Kathryn Budig: As often as I can! I love vinyasa flow, but stay inspired by experimenting in all other fields. I nibble away and take home what I love about each and turn it into my own.
    • Jason Crandell: I’ve always embraced a fairly wide-spectrum of Hatha yoga—from slow, quiet and contemplative to vigorous and technical. I like to think I’m educated about the history, cultural context and evolution of hatha yoga, but I have modern—and strongly secular—sensibilities. The truth is that the vast majority of what we do nowadays is so blended and derivative, that I can’t say I do this style or that style. Honestly, if I go slowly one day and stay in postures for 5-6 minutes with attention and softness, do I have to call it “Yin?” If I focus on grounding my femurs and spreading my metatarsals, do I have to call it “Iyengar?” If I focus on fluid movement, breath and rhythm do I have to call it “Flow,” “Power,” “Vinyasa?” With all due respect to all of the excellent teachers and lineages that we have access to nowadays, I just can’t do it. Instead, I practice hatha yoga in any given way on any given day that makes me feel sane and grounded.
    • Tiffany Cruikshank: I try to do something different once a week give or take. It’s important to have a consistent practice to build stability most of the time, but to regularly step out of the box to shake things up and keep you on your toes. That way I never get stagnant and I constantly find new inspiration.
    • Steven Espinosa: When I first began practicing, I was pretty much dedicated to one system of yoga. Then, over the years I took the many valuable lessons I learned and began to branch out and explore different styles. Nowadays, I like to just “drop in” on a class without knowing the style or system or teacher and just enjoy what is being offered at that moment.
    • Marc Holzman: Several times per week. Every style targets a different aspect of my practice. Iyengar. Vinyasa Flow. Kundalini. Restoratives. I love them all.
    • Amy Ippoliti: Probably bi-monthly. But lately I feel like like a hybrid.
    • Tara Judelle: Right now I am in an exploration phase, so I practice any style of yoga I can find the time and place to practice. I am interested in moving beyond style into a comprehensive understanding of body/mind. So to me, if it’s moving with mindfulness, it is yoga, and I will practice that every chance I get.
    • Kia Miller: My personal practice is a mixture of everything I have learned from many different branches of the same tree of yoga. I see it all as Yoga with a capital Y. I practice much of what I teach. My daily sadhana is the same: good warm up with Kriya and Meditation. I love Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Iyengar etc… Many paths leading to the same inner connection. Some are express trains, some are a meandering ride in the park!
    • Christina Sell: I have always practiced a variety of styles of Hatha yoga- Anusara Yoga, Ashtanga Vinyasa, Bikram Yoga, and Iyengar Yoga, and Vinyasa Yoga has been my primary interest and influence. When I practice alone my practice is a bit of a hybrid of these various approaches with time spent in Vinyasa as well as time spent in analysis, repetition and refinement. I do not heat a room when I practice alone but I certainly do not like it cold either. When I am in a class of a particular style however, I do my best to go with a “purist” mindset in order to really understand what a particular method or style is offering.
    • Sianna Sherman: Baseline…it’s all one yoga family to me. It really is…I go to a variety of classes all the time and learn from everyone, all styles, traditions, and teachers. It’s the most fantastic experience to show up as a beginner wherever I go and experience the essence of yoga through it’s many faces and forms. How often? As much as possible!
    • Stephanie Snyder: I practice all styles of yoga. Although Vinyasa is at the core of my practice, I integrate Kundalini, tons of Iyengar, Restorative and even somatic movement. It’s all Bhakti as far as I’m concerned. And as a teacher I am fascinated and grateful for all of the gifts the teachers before me have left for us to uncover and re-discover.
    • Jo Tastula: When I first started practicing yoga I tried everything from as many different teachers as possible; Ashtanga, Iyengar, Viniyoga, Kundalini, Shadow Yoga… you name it!  But now pretty much I stick to my own home practice. If there’s a new teacher in town or I’m visiting a new city I like to check out the local style.
    • Harshada Wagner: Seldom….if I feel like yoga is “styled” I avoid it. If it’s yoga, I will do it


  • Posted on July 13th, 2012 8:00:55 AM YogaGlo No comments

    Ask a YogiYou’ve practiced with them on YogaGlo. You’ve followed them on Facebook. You might even take their classes in person once in awhile if they travel to or live in your city. But how well do you know our YogaGlo teachers? We’ve created a new series, Ask a Yogi, so you can learn more about them by asking questions you’ve always wanted to ask.

    From favorite poses and tips for beginners to deeper questions about how their practice has changed their worldview, our teachers will collectively answer a new question each week. If you have a question you’d like to “Ask a Yogi” let us know in the comments or email us at hello@yogaglo.com and we’ll add your questions to the list. Today’s Ask a Yogi question is:

    How does your yoga practice help you in moments of stress?

    • Elena Bower: Reminds me that there is something bigger than me and I must respect that sense of scale and relative importance.
    • Kathryn Budig: My practice is always a game changer. I can unroll my mat miserable and by the end of my practice remember that everything is lined up and happening for a very good reason.
    • Jason Crandell: When people find out that I teach yoga they say things like, “oh, you must be so relaxed all the time.” I do my best to show who I really am to my regular students, but even most of them think that I’m a calm, mellow guy that responds to all of life’s vicissitudes with ease and grace. The truth is that I’m a simmering ball of tension ¾’s of the time and that yoga has simply helped contextualize, manage and respond to the stress more skillfully. Yoga has helped me understand that my personality, as well as my insecurities and ambitions make me prone to stress—and, it’s helped me fundamentally accept who I am (and that includes being a bit of a stress-maker). My practice has also taught me to give in less to my inner-narrative, especially when it’s spinning toward some sort of anxiety or fear. It’s helped me downgrade my experience of stress by teaching me to witness my stress without completely identifying with it. My practice has also taken the feeling of inner-pressure that stress invokes and replaced it with a sense of greater calm, composure and space. In short, I still experience plenty of stress but yoga has redesigned my relationship to it—most of the time—except, (of course when it hasn’t, like when there’s turbulence at 35,000 feet or when the other members of our HOA don’t bring in the !@#$ garbage cans).
    • Tiffany Cruikshank: My practice is like my anchor that brings me back to myself over and over again, whether it’s a good day or a bad day is irrelevant. It’s like coming home to yourself and realizing that usually the stuff that stresses you out is small and insignificant in the whole scheme of things. If I can change how I react to the stress of holding a posture I can change my perspective of stress in my life.
    • Steven Espinosa: I believe my yoga practice has taught me how to remain more grounded and steady on the inside even when things are chaotic on the outside. So in times of high stress I am able to stay more centered instead of reacting from a “fight or flight” perspective.
    • Marc Holzman: Inhale for 4. Hold for 16. Exhale for 8. Works every time.
    • Amy Ippoliti: Practicing when I am stressed inevitably reminds me that the world is not going to fall apart if I duck out and get on my mat for 20-90minutes. And of course I feel more relaxed and at ease when I finish. I rarely regret having taken the time to get on the mat in stressful times.
    • Tara Judelle: Stress is just energy that is misappropriated and usually in need of direction so I can take action. When I am stressed, I work to redirect the energy in a way that is beneficial to my body. This means that I want to reconnect to my breath, and usually, to move the energy down. I also want to move back into a place of ease. Depending on the time and the situation, the practice becomes the platform for breathing, grounding, and reconnecting.
    • Kia Miller: My greatest practice is to take a deep inhale when-ever something happens in life that I perceive as not going the way I had intended. The deep breath allows just enough time for me to be willing to shift my perspective.  If the stress is substantial then I must take more deep breaths before I respond! I have found this practice to be my greatest ally in life. It has helped me to remain graceful in the most ungraceful of circumstances!
    • Christina Sell: I think at the heart of any yoga practice is really one’s relationship to awareness. So, yoga has given me tools to be connected to myself and to stay aware of that connection regardless of circumstances, for instance, even in moments of stress. Additionally, yoga- not just asana but the whole ball of wax that I consider “practice” such as diet, sleep, meditation, pranayama, mantra, conscious relationship, communication practices and other various inner orientations– help me to connect to something that is larger than my personality which is usually where stress resides. Having said that, I make tons of mistakes, I am not a very patient person by nature, I am in no way a mellow, relaxed kind of yogi so one great benefit of a regular asana practice is that when stress has built up inside me- physically, emotionally, intellectually, nothing moves stuck energy for me like asana. I am a very physically-oriented person and asana practice is like pushing a re-set button so if I “forgot to practice” in the stressful moment, I can re-set, release, let-go and start again. I am very grateful for this tool.
    • Sianna Sherman: I turn my awareness to my breath and allow prana to source me in the living, breathing space that always calls me home. Stress occurs when I push against the current and move in a way that is disconnected, sometimes trying to push something away and other times wanting something that seems out of reach. The incredible beauty of awareness and breath is that they are tandem friends and help me shift my perspective the moment I turn to them. Immediately, I start to remember the truth of myself and can rest in the paradox that I’m embodied spirit.
    • Stephanie Snyder: One of the greatest aspects of the practice is that I can prescribe a sequence to address nearly any issue I’m dealing with whether it be physical or emotional. And I do! When I’m stressed I usually go for long forward folds and hip openers to ground me. If I just need to burn something out then Ill do a quick all around flow with vinyasa, a rhythmic and fluid practice to try and move out anything thats been sticking around for too long!
    • Jo Tastula: Stress can overtake you like a hostage. Before you know it you’re stuck in the turbulent fears of your mind and unable to see the forest for the trees. The skill of yoga is to simply be with what ever is happening right now in this moment, and to meet the moment with your undivided attention. It reminds you to breath, to feel and to acknowledge what is. Somehow, doing these simple things can bring the ground back beneath your feet and the breath back to your lips (or nose). In times of great turmoil this skill is a real lifeline.
    • Harshada Wagner: Well, honestly I don’t have many moments of stress, and this is thanks to my practice. Meditation practice expands your limits in a way where you don’t feel so pressurized. You feel spacious, so it’s easier to welcome intense energy. When I do get run down or feel pressurized, then surely a moment of remembrance, a few conscious breaths, the sweet vibration of mantra brings me back to spaciousness.