What do you do for fun?
Being outside, without regard to time, enlivens me. There’s so much that I love to do outdoors, from my backyard to the mountains and oceans, from sitting still silently to racing as quickly as I can. I enjoy working with bees, especially sitting near my hive, watching the bee-lives unfold. I love to mountain bike- actually just bike riding in general is one of my favorites in life. Being able to hop on and pedal myself to new places is still exciting and novel. I love to practice yoga outside, in my yard, in Moab, on the beach near bird point- practicing outside inspires me and often influences the way I teach in class. Nordic skiing is quickly becoming one of my new passions because it allows me to move in a new way and be outside even in the midst of winter. One of my winter haunts is a point off the coastal trail where I can watch the ravens play on the thermals- I love that skiing helps me discover places like that. I love being outside watching things unfold and unfolding myself.
What inspires you to teach?
There are many things that inspire me to teach, one of the biggies, is using the breakthroughs in my own practice to help the development of others. I am fascinated by the way our bodies can unravel and be revealed through yoga; I love “being a fascillitator” of this exploration in others. With each new breakthrough in my own practice, I am delighted to share with my students ways of working poses that help them gain new perspective. I love digging in and working to find cues and poses to help students to explore more deeply in their practice.
My injuries have inspired me in a lot of ways-
They have kept me vulnerable and offered opportunities to work with myself, right where I was at.
Offering areas of reworking old habitual patterns to create new, more interesting, and honest ways to relate to myself.
Given me an opportunity to reconnect with areas of my body that I considered old, hurt, or simply couldn’t “feel into” anymore. Opened me up to bringing breath and space back into my whole body.
All of this work in myself, progressing through injury, continues to inspire me to teach and help others through their own processes, whether injury is emotional or physical. I am grateful to be able to guide others and inspire by this work.
That I can create and hold a safe, supportive space for others to explore their bodies.
My favorite (and formerly most dreaded!) pose is Warrior I (Virabhadrasana I)- like many things I eventually find rewarding, this was one that I initially avoided. I couldn’t quite figure out what was happening with the back leg or how my hips were going to make their way around to face the front of the mat. I spent a fair amount of time (read: a few years) trying to force myself into this pose.
A few months ago, I started to wonder what would happen if I tried to work with a little more space and ease and a little less force (good advice for most difficult things in life). Instead of forcing the hips around, I got pretty curious about what was happening a little lower down, especially in my back leg. My feet began to connect to the ground in a way I hadn’t felt before and my low back began to feel more stable. And the SPACIOUSNESS I continue to find is delicious.
We are working Warrior I in my classes these days, paying special attention to the back leg and all the ways to unravel the pose. This is one of my favorite parts about my own practice, diving into poses I find particularly challenging, working on them in my own body and sharing them with my students. What fun it is to unravel and explore together!