|1. Why are you passionate about teaching yoga? What do you love about teaching at Eugene Yoga?|
My passion is to provide yoga tools and the healing guided meditation of Yoga Nidra to help students experience more peace and joy in their lives. Gentle Yoga and Yoga Nidra have changed my life after a car accident 10 years ago. I am so much more calm and relaxed; I have more energy and joy in my life, and I sleep better. I want to share these tools to help others.
I love teaching at Eugene Yoga because of the sense of community and camaraderie among so many talented and compassionate teachers.
2. Can you remember your first yoga session as a practitioner? What was that experience like for you, and what motivated you to come back for more?
3. Describe your favorite style or lineage of yoga as a student and/or as an instructor.
As an instructor, my favorite lineage is that of Richard Miller, PhD, founder of iRest® Yoga Nidra. He combined Western clinical psychology with the ancient Eastern tradition of Yoga Nidra to create a protocol that has been proven in clinical trials to reduce PTSD, insomnia, depression, anxiety and chronic pain. It is a deep, deep rest. Thirty minutes of iRest® (or other Yogo Nidra) is as restful and refreshing as two hours of deep sleep.4. What style of yoga was the focus of your Yoga Teacher Training (YTT)? What ongoing training have you pursued since your original certification?
In 2015, I completed a 500-hour Hatha Yoga Teacher and Therapy training with Sarahjoy Marsh in Portland. In 2015/16, I completed Richard Miller’s Level One and Two iRest® Yoga Nidra trainings, and, in 2017, I was certified by the IAYT as a Yoga Therapist. I recently completed a 2-year certification process in the iRest® protocol of Yoga Nidra guided meditation.
5. Do you have a favorite asana (posture) and/or pranayama (breath control) technique, and why?
I have two favorite poses — the first is Lion’s Pose, an amazing release breath to let go of tension and stress — roar 3 times like a lion and let it all go; the second is Legs Up the Wall, the most restorative pose there is. Benefits: relieves tired legs, drains and re-circulates blood and lymph through the organs, and boosts the immune system. Also great before bed while doing alternate nostril breathing.
My favorite breath is Bhramari (Bumble Bee) Breath — the only breath I know of that can dissipate anger and frustration — inner vibrations calm the nervous system while connecting the practitioner to the vibrations of the greater universe (along with other health benefits).
6. How do you engage with yoga off the mat? How does Yoga Philosophy inform other aspects of your work as a Yoga Instructor and/or your life in general?
I try to practice what I teach: Being present in each precious moment, welcoming challenges as opportunities to learn and grow, kindness and compassion toward myself and others, gratitude, practicing Yoga Nidra every day…
7. How did you come to teach at Eugene Yoga? What kinds of classes and events have you offered and/or would you like to offer here?
After taking Sarahjoy Marsh’s 200-hr Yoga training in 2013, Diane Butera inspired me to also teach yoga with the guided meditation of Yoga Nidra, as Yoga Nidra changed Diane’s as well as my life in unique ways. I offer Gentle Yoga with Yoga Nidra as well as Yoga Nidra and iRest series. Thanks to Diane’s initial training, I offer a training to teach others how to teach Yoga Nidra each year, as well as occasional workshops. I hope to offer a workshop on the topic of Yoga Nidra for Pain in the future.
8. What advice would you give to a true yoga beginner? To a seasoned yogi seeking to deepen their yoga practice?
Advice to a Beginner: Take it slow. No expectations. Feel into each precious present moment and learn to listen to the messages your body is sending you. Rest deeply. Try Yoga Nidra or iRest if you haven’t already.
Advice to a seasoned yogi: Slow down even more, connecting with your ever-present underlying stillness. No expectations. Feel into each precious present moment of your practice and your life. Learn to listen and dialogue with emotions and unhelpful thoughts as they arise, perhaps exploring opposites. Rest even more deeply. Try Yoga Nidra or iRest if you haven’t.
9. Is there anything else that you would like to share?
Thank you again for doing all you to to make EY a great place to work!