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Gratitude for my ashtanga beginnings...




Just thinking of one of my earliest Ashtanga Yoga inspirations. In 2003, with two little ones at home and not much time to go to my local yoga studio, I purchased a DVD featuring Ashtanga Yoga teacher Nicki Doane. I like to think of this as the beginning of my real passion for yoga. I’ve never considered myself a particularly disciplined person, but I developed discipline by rolling out my mat and following the DVD nearly every day (with baby Em and little Ari climbing on me during practice...developing a strong "drishti" on my mat). Nicky Doane’s DVD inspired me to go to Ashtanga Yoga Teacher training school which transformed my body, my heart and my mind. I wrote her an email of thanks many years later and often think of her when I'm teaching. 


Fast forward after teaching for 17 years; I can see (and my long-time yogis can attest) my practice and teachings have changed a bit; but much of the inspiration from this wonderful teacher remains. In the video Nicki explains that with regular practice, we develop a “strong foundation” and a “lightness of being” from which we can continue to grow. The inspiring text to the intro of the video is below.


“Guru vandana,” Nicki Doane


“Ashtanga yoga is considered a Hatha Yoga breathing system developed by Sri K. Patthabbit Jois in India. This unique system can invigorate the body helping to develop a sense of wellbeing and groundedness in your life. The poses are performed together with the breath in a system known  as “vinyasa.” There is never any separation between movement and breathing. The first 2 groups of poses are called Surya Namaskara A and B. Translated from Sanskrit it means “salutation to the sun.” Gratitude to Surya the god of the sun and good health. The sun salutations help to create heat and fluidity in the body. The standing poses root us to the earth and help us create a strong foundation from which we can continue to grow. With regular practice this program can help you create a lightness of being and a feeling of flowing more freely through your daily activities.”


Join me for a class in the studio or on Zoom (or a whole weekend at my retreat March 22-24, 2024).


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