I believe that all people deserve to be happy, however I do not believe that it is an entitlement. As Elizabeth Gilbert put it in Eat, Pray, Love – “Happiness is the consequence of personal effort. You fight for it, strive for it, insist upon it, and sometimes even travel around the world looking for it.” Which is exactly what I did. Despite being happy and content with my life in the US, I chose to leave my country for Australia in search of a new life with my family. And although leaving one’s home country might sound distressing to some, I made a choice to be happy and have created a life of love, family and friends, here in Canberra.
I am certified to teach Vinyasa Flow teacher, however my background is primarily in the Iyengar method. I have studied with senior Iyengar teachers since 1995. I considered getting certified in the Iyengar system many times, but never had the time nor the funds to do so. However my desire to teach yoga never wavered and so finally in 2013, when both of my children were in school, I was able to devote the time I needed to study and practice for a yoga teacher training program.
Over the course of those 18 years I have taken numerous workshops and seminars with many teachers in a wide range of styles. Having lived in Texas for most of my life I was fortunate enough to attend classes with many of the teachers who passed through. This included several senior Iyengar teachers such as Ramanand Patel, Manouso Manos, and George Purvis. Brothers Doug and David Swenson also visited Texas often, and both gave inspiring workshops. With John Friend’s offices located minutes from my parents’ home in Spring, Texas, Anusara workshops were quite common. I also attended the Southwest Yoga Conference for many consecutive years. It was there that I had the opportunity to try classes from other great teachers, including the ever so popular, Rodney Yee. Finally, before coming to Canberra, I lived in Salt Lake City, Utah for four years. Because I was unable to find an Iyengar teacher, I attended classes at Centered City Yoga, a studio owned and run by D’ana Baptiste (Baron Baptiste’s ex-wife) where I practiced power yoga and prenatal yoga with my first pregnancy.
My core philosopy is that through a steady, mindful practice of asana, all eight limbs of yoga can be achieved. I see the yoga class as a laboratory for life. In my class, I may ask you to do things which might confuse or daunt you. These are like the challenges we face every day of our lives. But it is how we cope with these emotions that determine our happiness and contentment. Over time, with a dedicated practice, you will learn to steady the breath, keep your mind clear, dispel your doubts, find confidence and courage to achieve what you initially did not think was possible. It is these skills that you will learn in class and take with you off the mat and into your daily life.
In my voice reside the voices of my teachers. The descriptions I give to you are the descriptions they gave to me, with a few touches of my own. I believe that to receive the benefits of a pose one must practice it to the best of one’s ability safely and confidently. To achieve this, I will assist you to explore the pose and to decide what modifications need to be made to suit your body and its unique abilities. This often means holding the poses for longer and experimenting with them in different ways so that in time you can create a safe and nurturing yoga practice.
When yoga became my vocation, my practice became focused on what to teach and how to teach it. Recently however, I took a holiday to Jervis Bay where I awoke early and naturally each day, with great anticipation for the day that lay ahead. With the cool sea breeze, the sound of the waves, and the peace of the morning, I practiced yoga out of doors for the sake of practising for my own health and personal well-being. It is this enthusiasm that I try to bring into my daily practise (away from the coast).