What do you like most about teaching yoga?
I have the opportunity to work one-on-one or in groups to help students achieve personal goals and improve their over all sense of well-being and health. I enjoy the positive energy that each class shares with each other and with myself.
What questions do your students most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
"What type of Yoga do you teach?" I answer with simply, Yoga. I do not follow a specific "branch or style" of Yoga. I teach what my students need; I focus I the individual student/group and meet them where they are on their person journey.
As a student, what do you wish you knew about your trade? Any inside secrets?
The journey is not always easy. It is sometimes difficult, discouraging; it challenges your body physically as well as your mind. When you think you have it figured out, when you think you have reached the zenith, something will come back into your practice to challenge you all over again. It's a continuous growth process.
What's your favorite teaching story?
I was teaching a group class; the first student to arrive did not speak English or Sanskrit. She spoke limited Spanish and fluent Italian. I speak limited Spanish. Some how we managed to have a twenty minute conversation where we were able to find out about each other - how long I have been teaching, how long she has been in the States, family, careers, goals. It turned out to be a really great class.
What do you wish students knew about you as a teacher?
Students will come into their practice, they meet new teachers, interact with different styles of Yoga. Students will find what they are looking for when they are ready for it. If I happen to be their teacher at any given time I hope they are able to learn something new, something different, something they can apply to their practice as they continue to grow and evolve.
What advice do you have for a student looking to start or return to their practice?
If this is your first time or you are returning from an injury or from a long break from your practice, do not be discouraged. Take baby steps, slow down. Try to enjoy the journey.
How did you decide to become a teacher?
I was in college when I first started practicing Yoga. I had lots of stress and anxiety from being a full time student and working full time. Yoga helped me manage my stress. After experiencing some of the benefits first hand I decided to help others with their journey, so I decided to become a teacher.
Can you tell us about a recent student you are particularly proud of?
A new student to one of my group classes requested private lessons to improve his flexibility, range-of-motion, and to help heal past injuries. He was a former athlete; his past injuries include broken collarbones, shoulders, fingers, wrists, knees and his current rotator cuff injury. After working with him for 1.5 hours. He turned to me said, "It was hard, but I feel good."
Time, money, all factors aside; what do you wish you could do more of to improve your teaching?
I would love to participate in more continuing education classes, workshops and retreats. I love learning.
What advice would you give someone who wanted to become a teacher?
Read the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, carefully. One of them will resonate with you consciously, one of them will resonate with you sub-consciously. It will be the sub-conscious one that you will learn the biggest life-lessons from.
What is your greatest strength?
I am a very passionate person.
What are you currently working on/towards?
I am working towards rebuilding my personal practice after sustaining severe injuries. As a teacher it's difficult to find time to focus on my own practice because I focus so much on others.
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