I’ve been practicing yogāsana (physical postures) since 2001, and my journey began as a departure from dance to maintain fitness and flexibility. It has brought me physical benefits, sure-- I am in much better and more balanced shape than I was 10 and even 15 years ago when dancing was my primary physical expression. More importantly, though, I'm kinder to myself, and more respectful of my strengths and my limits. I have much more detailed awareness of my physical body. Although I've always been a mover, now I'm embodied.
In 2006 when I finally committed to practicing four to five times per week, as opposed to none or one or two, I started to notice subtler changes: in my mood, personality, intuition, and in my way of relating to others and myself. I became interested in mantra (chanting), prāṇāyāma, and meditation, all of which seemed to affect me in slightly different yet complimentary ways than postural practice. I started to notice a plasticity of mind and ease in life, of which I’d previously been unaware was possible. At times it has felt like I have been rediscovering the freshness and joy of being a child in the world. Yoga has taught me how to meet life with increased bodily, emotional, and spiritual fluency, and with a smile, a cool head, and friendliness. I am a better learner and a more balanced person, and therefore a more effective human being. I feel empowered to act from my deepest values more of the time.
Hailing from Smyrna, Georgia, I moved to New York state for college. I graduated from Sarah Lawrence in 2005 with concentrations in Studio Art and Visual Culture, and continue a lifelong exploration in performance art, dance, painting and drawing, analog film and animation, and installation/costume/ritual art. I engage with my creative endeavors as process rather than product. For thirteen years I share my Bushwick, Brooklyn home with an athletic, affectionate, and soft-spoken cat named Wolfy, and several very dear friends. I practice Haitian Vodou drumming and dance, I love to cook, and to commute by bike. In growing season I can often be found in my roof garden, either working hard or sitting still. I’m just beginning to discover the pleasure and freedom of sound-making in my Vedic and sutra-chanting practices, and more recently in my pursuit of Kirtan chanting and harmonium. If you are looking for a wonderful music teacher, check out my colleague Seth Lieberman.
I completed my 200- and 500-hour certifications at Yoga Sutra before it closed in 2011. Said teacher training program extracted itself after closure of the studio, and is now known as The Yoga School NY. I studied under the guidance of Guta Hedewig, Rachel Lynch-John, Jill Camera, Edwin Bryant, Jo Brill, and many other wonderful teachers. There I also had the privilege of assisting Amy Santos in the Mysore Ashtanga classroom, and her breath-based adjustments have informed my sense of touch in the classroom. I thrive when continually engaged in learning, and have studied anatomy and kinesiology with Amy Matthews and Leslie Kaminoff at The Breathing Project. I continue to study embodied anatomy and Body-Mind Centering® with Amy Matthews and Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen, Vedic and sutra chanting with Guta Hedewig, and have studied the Sanskrit language intermittently with Jo Brill.
By engaging curiously, honestly, and completely with our physical manifestations we can cultivate greater awareness, an increased sense of wellbeing, and an appreciation for the present moment so that we may interact with the world from our hearts. I have been teaching since January of 2010, and feel incredibly lucky to share my experience of yoga with others, especially in the capacity of making a living, because we live in a technocapitalist society that demands so much of our time be spent earning money. I’m amazed at the power of yogic practice to facilitate change in myself and those around me, to nourish deeper, more profound connection to my own self and to others. I am empowered, when at my best, to be my ideal possible self at this moment in time. Yoga practice provides experience beyond the familiar, manifests courage, grace, and steadiness. Yoga practice elucidates the beautiful connective plexus that binds us all, the pervasive vibrational ground of love upon which the appearance of the separateness in manifold form rests. From the Taittiriya Upaniṣad, Hā Vu Hā Vu Hā Vu!