C-IAYT, YTRX-800C, RYT 500
LYW: How/why did you come to Yoga? And how, when, why did you choose to join the LiveYoga Wellness community.
LA: I sought yoga for an aching back in my early 30’s and experienced what I now know was an Iyengar style. I got some relief and came back to yoga when pregnant. Yoga helped me manage my breathing which eased the childbirth experience. Eventually in 2009 after practicing in a studio I thought I’d deepen my understanding of my own body and yoga by taking a 200-hour teacher training. This led me to study Yoga Therapy (YT) at Loyola Marymount University (LMU) in 2011, when it became clear to me that there is so much more to Yoga than asana and breathing! I met Teri Roseman during my YT training and appreciate the mindful way she has grown our sweet little LiveYoga Wellness (LYW) studio. I am attracted by the integrity of the teachers and students that come to the mat here.
LYW: How has Yoga changed your life?
LA: Yoga has changed my life in that I have come to understand yoga as life. One can practice yoga, which is largely a science of the mind, anytime, anywhere. Therefore, a mindful approach to daily living, the way we treat ourselves, and each other, the way we remain curious and compassionate is a yoga practice, and a life practice.
Yoga has given me a path of study that continues to intrigue me these last ten years.
LYW: Why do you love teaching Yoga?
LA: I love teaching people the benefits and experience of being attentive to their bodies and minds, and offering experiences of meeting themselves just as they are with kindness. When we start from the belief that we are whole and “OK” just as we are, healing can happen. I love offering the tools of yoga and watching people regulate their own nervous systems through the practice of movement, breathing and mindfulness! I equally love teaching meditation for the same reason, meeting ourselves at home within and feeling a sense of being and presence supports healing and well being.
LYW: How do you take your Yoga into the world?
LA: I take my Yoga In to the world by the way I view myself in the world. I am in a regular state of Svadyaya or self-study, so that I move through the world with ease and responsiveness versus reactivity. I remain curious about people and the environment around me, that we are so intimately connected with. I practice self-compassion so that I can best serve others with kindness and compassion.
LYW: What is your current practice or a recommendation and why?
LA: I am a big fan of self-study. This can look different for each individual. It may be three postures on the mat. It may be 10 minutes of journaling; it may be meditation, a breathing practice, or a bike ride. All of these practices/activities are opportunities to connect with your self, understand the tendencies of the mind and the sensations in the body. From this we come to know our deepest selves. That part which is unbroken, wise, constant, unchanging. This is known as Purusa in the yoga sutras. Pure consciousness.
My practice today, near a lake in Michigan, was a brisk 45 minute walk, feeling the fullness of my strides (physical body) connecting my breath with a couple different chants (breath/mental bodies), soaking up the smells, nature sounds and colors and welcoming in Joy (bliss body).