What in your practice inspires you to teach? Not a day goes by that I do not think, “I can’t imagine my life without yoga.” As an adult, I have moved three times with my family. While each transition ran the gamut from thrilling to challenging, I found the one constant was yoga. Each yoga class can be a mini life experience, from realizing my habit of putting my mat in the same place, to how I might judge my inability to do a certain pose. Sometimes I struggle to still my mind from wandering. In the end, it can be a challenge to actually pause in savasana. So, while I worked through the logistics of relocation, I ultimately wanted to deepen my practice and understand the “why” behind the power of yoga, to infuse yoga into my day-to-day life and share the ability to embrace change and, sometimes, chaos with acceptance and grace. From the simple to the sublime, there is an aspect of yoga woven into every breath we take.
Tell us a little about your yoga journey and how this influences what you bring across in your teaching? From the first Bikrim yoga class I took to lose the weight I gained after having my first baby, to each class I take now, I feel that yoga is transformative and empowering. I felt the physical changes pretty quickly and started taking yoga classes in various states. I realized that the depth of what there is to learn from yoga is endless; I am a perpetual student. I set up a space in my attic where I have all my yoga literature. Each week the time spent reading helps me to stay balanced. I try to bring one piece of yoga history to every class. Over time, the roots of yoga can seep into our mind unaware and the transformation just happens. I hope I can help students find a quiet space to listen to their hearts and hear their own voice, to find their passions and feel empowered to share their gifts with others.
What is your favorite activity outside of yoga and how does yoga help this activity? If I am not taking care of my family, I am thinking about or doing yoga. Or, I am cooking and thinking about eating. I like to create themed menus. When the stars and moon align, I hope to deliver a satisfying food experience. I try to create yoga classes that have that same sense of completeness, from the appetizer and warm up, to the entrée and main sequence. Finally, what would a meal be without a tasty desert or a class without a wind down? I studied wine for 3 years at WSET in PA, so maybe a matching wine to go with the playlist?
How would you describe your teaching? We all come to yoga from different backgrounds. I was doing cheerleading splits from the time I was nine and the muscles certainly do have a long memory. While my classes can be challenging, my goal is for everyone to start from where they are and move through each class with a intention of being patient, open and receptive. I’ve told my three kids that nothing worth pursuing happens quickly. Since no one has a crystal ball, you never know the outcome until you try. Every student is an inspiration to me, and like life, the possibilities on and off our mats, is endless.
What makes teaching at Kaia yoga a unique experience? When I moved to CT in 2008, I started taking yoga wherever I could. Once I signed up to do the 300-hour Teacher Training with Gina and Stan, I knew I had found what I was looking for in a comprehensive yoga studio. The variety of teachers, students, workshops and other training opportunities is vast. It is so important to have a sense of community. Over the years, I have met many yogis at Kaia. It’s great to see a fellow teacher or student and feel like you can have a chat and catch up like long lost friends.