yoga teacher

Finding the Right Yoga Teacher

Heather Larson by Heather Larson | May 5th, 2014 | No Comments
topic: Fitness, Yoga | tags: beginner yoga, finding a yoga teacher, gaiam, Yoga, yoga classes, yoga for everyone, yoga teacher

yoga teacher

Although choosing the style of yoga that works best for you is important, locating an instructor you resonate with is crucial.

My first experience with yoga was through an after-work exercise program at the school district where I worked. The instructor gave initial instructions, but didn’t explain how to modify a pose if you were unable to do one in the way she described. The lady next to me mastered all the poses in their original form and between her and the teacher, I felt lost, confused and most of all, uncomfortable. That encounter caused me to stay away from any yoga class for several years.

After hearing rave reviews about a local studio and needing to alleviate my joint pain from arthritis, I tried a gentle yoga class. From the moment I walked into the studio and was greeted by Jeni, the instructor, I knew I’d found a perfect place to develop a yoga practice. Jeni exuded friendliness and warmth, she explained everything, and she had one of the most soothing voices on the planet. If you mention an ache or pain you have, she incorporates moves into the class that help alleviate it, she gives lots of individual attention and she also takes other yoga classes. I’ve taken this same gentle yoga class from Jeni, every Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. now, for about seven years. And I’m never leaving.

How can you find your own version of Jeni?

7 Steps to Set Your Yoga Practice Up for Success

Sara Fruman by Sara Fruman | January 7th, 2014 | 1 Comment
topic: Fitness, Yoga | tags: 2014, breath, breathing, change, Fitness, health, new year's resolution, well-being, wellness, yoga class, yoga instructor, yoga teacher, yoga-practice

yoga practice 2014

Beginning a yoga practice can feel frustrating, stressful — maybe even boring! But stick with it. Coming back to your mat again and again will improve your body, mind and spirit beyond levels that you even dreamed imaginable.

Find a blissful yoga practice by following these simple steps:

The Ethics of Teaching Yoga

Gaiam Staff by Gaiam Staff | February 18th, 2013 | No Comments
topic: Fitness, Personal Growth, Yoga | tags: adhering to a high standard of ethics, Big Happy Day, blogging, chiropractor, class safety, confidentiality, Darren Main, doctor, ethical standards, ethics, ethics to live by, GaiamTV, harmful ethics, healing, hippy, industry ethics, lift up the profession, massage therapist, niyamas, off the mat, on the mat, professionalism, safe space, speak honestly, spirituality, students, wholeness, yamas, yoga teacher, yoga teacher ethics

Yogi Darren Main asks yoga teachers to reflect on the ethics of being a yoga teacher. Main views ethics as a foundational necessity for any yoga teacher so that they can create a safe space for students to flourish and grow. He believes teachers must root themselves in the Yamas and the Niyamas in order to be a good example for students both on and off the mat.

Tips on Mastering Handstand

Gaiam Staff by Gaiam Staff | February 14th, 2013 | 1 Comment
topic: Fitness, Green Living, Yoga | tags: Adho Mukha Vrksasana, asanas, core alignment, Downward-Facing Tree, handstand, inversion, mindfulness, tips, Yoga, yoga classes, yoga instructor, yoga poses, yoga teacher, yogi

Kathryn Budig HandstandAny yoga pose can be done in an inspired way. In fact, the more inspiration you put into it, the better the pose. (This goes for Savasana too, yo.) Be present, breathe, look inward, breathe … be inspired. This is yoga!

Nevertheless, most of us yogis aspire toward the more advanced asanas, and one that usually comes right to mind is Handstand: Adho Mukha Vrksasana. Downward-Facing Tree. In which your hands and fingers are the branches reaching down into the ground, and your feet and toes the roots reaching for the sky. There’s nothing like it for a new perspective — on yourself and on life in general.

Muses and Meaning: An Interview with Yogi Elena Brower (Part Two)

Jill Miller by Jill Miller | January 3rd, 2013 | No Comments
topic: Green Living, Yoga | tags: Africa Yoga Project, Akasha Project, Art of Attention book, at home yoga, charity, community, desert island, deserted island, Elena Brower, Erica Jago, Every Mother Counts, Indie Go Go, interview, leg stretch, Lineage Project, Oahu, Ojai Yoga Crib, online yoga, raquel welch, self-publish, Somaly Mam, spinal twist, supine stretch, Supta Padagusthasana #3, Virayoga, Women for Women, yoga class, Yoga Gives Back, yoga instructor, yoga pose, yoga teacher, Yoga Tune Up®, yoga videos

Erica Jago

Jill Miller met fellow yogi Elena Brower this past October when they both presented at the Ojai Yoga Crib, and the two immediately struck up a friendship. When Jill found out Elena was about to publish a yoga workbook called Art of Attention (co-authored by Erica Jago), she knew she wanted to have a heart-to-heart interview: teacher-to-teacher, innovator-to-innovator and woman-to-woman. Here is Part Two of her interview. To read Part One, click here.

Muses and Meaning: An Interview with Yogi Elena Brower (Part One)

Jill Miller by Jill Miller | November 30th, 2012 | No Comments
topic: Fitness, Inspirational Media, Personal Growth, Yoga | tags: Art of Attention, asana, author, book, burning man, celebrities, Central Park, Christy Turlington, donna karan, Eiffel Tower, Elena Brower, Erica Jago, extroverts, Gwyneth Paltrow, interview, introverts, Jill Miller, MC Yogi, meaning, Michael Chichi, Muse, Ojai Yoga Crib, problems, somatic imagination, vision board, wanderlust, Xanadu, yoga instructor, yoga teacher, yoga workbook, yoga-practice

Elena Brower at Burning Man

I first met Elena Brower this October when we both presented at the Ojai Yoga Crib, although we’d been acquainted through email for about a year prior. Elena walked into the faculty dinner and seemed to carry a piece of the sun in her essence.

Now I know that might sound a bit “woo-woo,” and if you’ve been reading my blog for the past five years, you know that I am a straight shooter and tend to refrain from sharing heavy doses of mystical or esoteric phenomenon with my readers. But I tell you, I can also recognize a galvanizer when I see one, and I was immediately drawn to Elena’s intense stare, clarity of tone and poetic spirit. She’s awesome! And I am happy to now call her my friend.

So when I found out she was about to publish her very first book Art of Attention, a yoga workbook designed to inspire your yoga practice, contemplation and creativity, which she wrote with co-author Erica Jago, I wanted to have a heart-to-heart interview: teacher-to-teacher, innovator-to-innovator and woman-to-woman. Here is the result of that conversation:

The Resonating Chambers of the Body

Gaiam Staff by Gaiam Staff | October 22nd, 2012 | No Comments
topic: Fitness, Health & Wellness, Yoga | tags: amplifying sound, amplifying voice, beautiful voice, dropping tounge, dynamic voice, ego, flexible voice, full range of voice, good voice, healing sound, Holding sound, make space in throat, open mouth, open throat, powerful speaking, relaxed throat, resonant voice, Resonating Chambers, sing, singing, sound, speaking, Suzanne Sterling, throat chamber, Vocal Chords, voice effects, yoga teacher, yogic thought

Suzanne Sterling discusses the three resonating chambers of the body and their importance for amplifying your vocal sound in a way that is healing for yourself and those around you. Resonating chambers are places that hold sound in and allow it to amplify inside of you, creating power, range and flexibility.

Hope Lives Within Me

Mandy Ingber by Mandy Ingber | May 7th, 2012 | 3 Comments
topic: Celebrity Workouts, Fitness, Personal Growth, Yoga | tags: celebrity yoga instructor, emptiness, Gaiam Hope Project, grief, healing, HOPE, hurt, Jennifer Aniston workout, loss, mandy ingber, meditation, pain, poem, poetry, prana, recovery, yoga teacher

Hopes Lives In Me

Hope.

Sometimes I sit. I sit through the storm and I shake and I wonder if the

Winds will blow me away. I wonder if I can endure the violence, the rage,

The anger. I forget what it was like to feel safe and be at peace, to live in

What My Daily Practice Looks Like

Jill Miller by Jill Miller | March 1st, 2012 | 3 Comments
topic: Fitness, Yoga | tags: backbends, core, corpse pose, daily yoga practice, dance, handstand, inversions, Leg Stretch #3, longevity, matador circles, meditation, Monk Walks, movement, posture, Psoas, rotator cuff, savasana, self-massage, Shoulder stabilization, Side Bends, squats, twist, Twisted Triangle, uddihyana bandha, Veeparita Korani Mudra, yoga block, yoga instructor, yoga poses, yoga teacher, yoga therapy balls, Yoga Tune Up, Zobha

Daily Yoga PracticeStudent: Jill, what do you actually do for your personal yoga practice?

Me: I practice what I teach.

Student: You mean you don’t do anything else? Spinning? Or running? Or Zumba? I mean, how do you get your arms to look like that?

Me: I don’t mean to sound cryptic … but I practice what I teach.

It’s true. I have been practicing yoga and multiple movement arts since I was 11 years old, and the yoga practice I teach in the classroom (I began teaching part-time at age 19 at The Omega Institute) has evolved and changed with me through the past two decades. The work I share in my classes, workshops, conferences and videos all resonates with my own discoveries in my personal “jungle gym” of a practice.

Photo Essay: San Francisco Yoga Journal Conference

Elena Brower by Elena Brower | January 30th, 2012 | 4 Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Fitness, Yoga | tags: Amanda Giacomini, Big Sur, California, Elena Brower, heart votive candle, MC Yogi, meditation, photo essay, photography, photos, rodney yee, San Francisco, San Francisco Airport, sunrise, sunset, yoga classes, Yoga Journal Conference, Yoga Room at SFO, yoga teacher, yoga workshop

Elena Brower - Yoga Journal ConferenceThe 9th Annual San Francisco Yoga Journal Conference was January 12-16. What a great way to start the new year! Gaiam was a sponsor, Rodney Yee was the keynote speaker, and yoga blogger Elena Brower was there teaching and sharing her yoga knowledge with hundreds of students and other attendees. Although many of us couldn’t be there in person, it almost feels as if we were, thanks to Elena’s gorgeous photo essay, below. Like what you see? Learn about next year’s event here.
- Editor