1. Tell me about your personal journey with yoga. Why is it important to you? Yoga is no longer something I do…it is what I am. I started this journey back in the early 90’s when it wasn’t so cool and popular. In some ways I feel like it saved me from myself. I was ambitious and young and very busy. Back then I was big into the fitness scene and owned a gym with my husband. Yoga was something we offered and something I enjoyed “doing”. When the teacher I hired decided to move to California to study I stepped in to teach. Funny, that I actually thought I knew enough from my fitness, anatomy, dance and group exercise background that I could teach. But, little did I know that there was a whole new world that would open up for me once I began to study and prepare my classes. Now almost 25 years later I am all yoga all the time and have dedicated my life to the study and practice. Teaching and sharing are my greatest pleasure and I am on a mission to make yoga accessible to all.
2. When did you first begin teaching yoga? What made you transition into a leadership position? I started teaching classes in 1995. Around the 10 year mark I began to feel like I had organically created a consistent presence and leadership role within my community. My students started to feel inspired and wanted to learn more so I pushed myself to step into the role of teaching and training and began my school in 2009. I have been training, mentoring and offering CEU’s ever since. The foundation of leadership for me is in living my yoga everyday on and off the mat.
3. What makes your classes unique? I teach two styles of yoga in order to meet my students exactly where they are. Some days are vigorous vinyasa, and others a long, slow & deep practice of yin yoga. It is in practicing and sharing both the yin and the yang of yoga that we find the balance we need to navigate this beautiful life. My style is organic and focused on being present. I have been known to get deep and serious just as often as I may make a joke and break through the tension that can build in the room. My gift is to be able to read the room and serve from a place that is not about me but about finding what the students need in the moment. Holding this space for transformation is truly an honor for which I am grateful.
4. How does music benefit your guidance in a yoga class? I have always been deeply affected and touched by music. It helps to create the mood in the room, so I am very careful in selecting what I play in class. If I can be moved by the music then so can my students. In the past five years I have been inviting musicians to play live for my classes and events. Yoga, like music is an expression of the soul. The musicians are creating something from deep within which can be transformative during the yoga practice. If I can connect with the musician before the class and we are on the same page then the experience we can create together for the students is MAGIC!
5. Tell me about your next event and where we can follow you online. What’s coming up for me is a 7 day Retreat and Training for Teachers in Costa Rica. Come with me Dec 8th-15th to get inspired about your yoga, deepen your practice and gain some tools that you can bring back and share with your students. You will be immersed in studies, daily yoga practice and meditation. This experience is designed for teachers that want to take care of themselves, avoid burnout, revitalize their practice and continue to study and learn. It is an incredible opportunity to connect with other teachers, be in nature and especially to be in community. 50 Hours of CEU’s will be earned for Yoga Alliance. You can get the details on my website yogajourney.com or contact bri@yogajourney to register.
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