Sunday, April 26, 2009

Let's try this again

I am feeling so great after a week by myself in NYC with Sharath, and about two hundred fellow Ashtangi's. It was like a little Mysore experience, a perfect echo, just what I needed.

I just got back from a fantastic practice. It felt so nice to dive back into second after spending 5 practices of primary keeping in step with Sharath's count....Navasana supta inhale.....1...2...........3...(seriously.) I am pumped to be heading up the Mysore program from Tuesday on this week at Yoga Squared. Getting ready to end this chapter of my life strong, come and practice.

Love. Love.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Push it Along

I thought that I was there last week, but now I see that I really didn't know how long the rope that was unraveling inside me really was. I think I can safely say now that I have come to the end of the rope and I am ready to be honest with myself and move forward. Some people thrive on stress. I do not. The conclusion of Teacher Training has now allowed me to release some stress, free up some time, and begin the letting go.

I am so excited to be heading to NY this afternoon for a week long practice with Sharath. My practice is in desperate need of a tune up, and my spirit longs for an injection of "the juice."

I will be blogging all week from NY....I promise (amanda)

I am giving a dropbacks workshop on the 9th of May (check my website) and space is limited so sign up and drop back!! I'll be teaching through the month of July, then Mike, Charlie, Angie, and I will be off to Providence to hit the refresh button and begin again.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

This Week's Practice Plan

If you have ever read my sister Joy blog you know that her "yoga life" is a food life. Just like my husband who is a photographer for a living but also a photographer for life. I will most likely drop the title yoga teacher when I arrive in my new home, but I will not drop the practice. It is really very interesting when what you "do", is really what you love. The idea of leaving work at the office (well in our cases there is no office) is ridiculous. That said trying maintain a healthy balance of teaching, giving, offering, and making a living has made many a yoga teacher (including myself) lose track of a daily practice.

Taking a good tip from my sister who tries to balance eating out and maintaining a healthy weight I am posting my practice schedule, and will report back at the end of each week with a recap.

This Week

Sunday April 12th-Saturday April 18th

Sunday 9am Mysore at Yoga Squared (I am about to leave for that one!)

Monday 6:30am Mysore at Yoga Squared

Tuesday 7am Mysore at Yoga Squared

Wednesday Sleep in and find an afternoon Vinyasa class (TT party aka Teacher Training Graduation! is that night)

Thursday I am teaching at 6:30am at Yoga Squared, I hope to grab a friend and practice after

Friday This is also up in the air

Saturday Take Rest


4 Mysore, and 1 Vinyasa

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Playing Catch Up

The entire month of April feels like one big blur. Now that I know where I am going to land, I can focus. Mike and I have decided that he will be attending the Rhode Island School of Design this fall, and we will be setting up shop in Providence.

Some things on my mind.

I am creating a list of all the things I want to do before leaving Philly. Please send suggestions!

I am ready to recommit to morning practices at Yoga Squared especially now that TT is closing on Wednesday.

I am getting ready to create a vision board (yes I make these.)

I am giving a workshop at Yoga Squared this afternoon (the weather couldn't be agreeing more) come and wrap your arms tightly around yourself and get closer to yourself, and the experience on yoga!

Monday, April 06, 2009

Seriously Grumpy

I have reached the end of this rope that has been unraveling inside me this morning. At first I thought this could be fun, pick up and move to a whole new city, you know have a real adventure. I am now 9 days away from knowing in which city this new adventure take place.

I am leaving for Providence in about an hour. I am not really prepared. I am bringing my camera and computer, so I can blog about the New England yoga scene.

See you next week...there are still some spots remaining in the binding workshop on Saturday...check the website, and see you then!

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Time After Time (this is a rant)

I have never been late for anything. Both of my parents were incredibly intense with time. If you weren't 10 minutes were in fact late. I have carried this into my adult life completely. I once told my boss at the NYU Information Center that if I wasn't there on time I wasn't coming. As I get older I realize that this "good" habit, isn't always so polite, or necessary. Lately I find myself sitting in my car, a little penalty box, being punished for the offense of ridiculously early arrival.

Spending so much time in India has helped. This is one of the many countries where time is more fluid. Everything in India apparently takes "5 minutes." This is code for 1 hour, 15 minutes, but mostly I don't know. Last week I was at Jivamukti Yoga and the class was scheduled to end at 4:30pm, but at 4:30 there was about 15 minutes to go before the teacher wrapped the whole thing up. I spent so much of that class watching the clock, distracted, annoyed that I really should have asked for my money back.

This is the point. When I am teaching a class, I know that the students can relax and totally surrender, free themselves to have an experience because they trust in me to end class on time. By honoring time, I am honoring the students. We all have BIG lives and it is arrogant to think that your teaching is so invaluable that missing your husband, train, bus, next appointment etc. in not important.

There I sat yesterday...completely missing out of the teaching because I did not trust the teacher to honor me and my classmates, or honor the time that we should all spend together. Having that experience I am glad that I watch the time, and give the students in my class the freedom to have an experience watching their body, mind, and breath, instead of the clock.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Take me to the River

Traveling through India this fall, the beginning of the festival season, I landed in Rishikesh on the final day of the Ganesha Caturthi. At the conclusion of puja on the Holy Ganga, Ganesha is placed in the river and set free in the powerful stream. When the group I was traveling with went for the Ashram’s orientation the woman in white smiled and said how happy she was that we were there for the Ganesh Immersion. I wrote in my notebook that night.

“Ganesh Immersion. Take me to the river, and let me go!”

On this wet spring day it is clear that only through this immersion will the city begin to bloom. I am really excited about the immersions that I am offering that may have you too blooming this spring.

As many of you know my beloved husband has been accepted into some really amazing MFA programs. While it is still a bit unclear where we will relocate, we will be leaving Philadelphia sometime this August and washing down the river. Until then come and practice, breathe, and share the magic of yoga. For the most up to date information, and upcoming Mysore dates check:

Dive In:

Better Binding
A Close Look at Postures Marichyasana A through Garbha Pindasana
Saturday April 11, 2009
1:00pm -5:00pm

Yoga Squared
1923 Chestnut Street, 3R
Philadelphia, PA

For more information, please contact Jill,

Hold Me Closer Cosmic Dancer
Sunday April 12, 2009
12:00pm -2:00pm

727 Montgomery Ave
Narberth, PA

$45, pre-registration, $50 day of
This “master" class has been designed to celebrate Shiva in the form of Natarajasana, the cosmic dancer and the cosmic dance known as Tandava. On the eve of Shivratri we will celebrate the divine art form. Tandava is a dance performed by Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati (Shakti.) According to Hindu mythology, Shiva's Tandava is a vigorous dance that is the source of the cycle of creation, preservation and dissolution. While the Rudra (Shiva’s Vedic name) Tandava depicts his violent nature, first as the creator and later as the destroyer of the universe, even of death itself; the Ananda (Bliss) Tandava depicts him as the enjoyer of his creation - the universe. In Indian tradition, Lord Shiva as Nataraja (Cosmic Dancer) is the supreme lord of dance. This will be a pure celebration as we honor all of these qualities with a practice that includes call and response chanting, breath practices, and a vigorous asana practice that will have us dancing in Shiva’s image and approaching Natarajasana in all of its many forms.
OM Namah Shivaya!

Spring Forward, Drop Back
Saturday May 9, 2009
1:00pm -4:00pm

Wake Up Yoga
2329 Parrish Street
Philadelphia, PA
$50, Early Registration Incentive: $45 if enrolled by 4/24/09
Space is Limited, register early!!!
Are you terrified of dropping back? Have you created mythology around
this practice telling yourself that it is something designed for someone
more flexible, younger, someone with more strength, or maybe just more
chutzpa? Then this workshop has been designed for you.

In this workshop we will explore the qualities of “dropping back”
that are embedded into the fabric of every single vinyasa yoga class. By
learning to utilize the natural curves of the spine, and exploring organic
undulations throughout the entire practice we will make connections so
that dropping back is as simple (not easy) as learning to stand (we will
explore that as well.)

Points of Exploration and Practice:
Learning to Crawl and Fall
Minding Your Head while Opening Your Heart
“Don’t Fear”

Foundation First
Saturday & Sunday, May 16 & 17, 2009
Saturday, 1:00pm -5:00pm, Sunday 12:00pm - 4:00pm
Yoga Squared
1923 Chestnut Street, 3R
Philadelphia, PA
For more information, please contact Jill,

The goal of the workshop is to provide students with a clear understanding and awareness of the Ashtanga methodology as taught by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois of Mysore, India. By calling upon the guidance of her teacher, David Keil, and her experiences during her three pilgrimages to Mysore (’06, ’07, ’08), Jill will lay a proper and strong foundation on which the students can confidently build self-practices and continue their studies. Over the course of the weekend, the class will explore the foundations of Ashtanga practice by studying the external postures and working to develop awareness of the more subtle aspects such as the prana (breath), bandha (energy) and dristi (focus). Throughout the class Jill will cover the opening and closing mantras, some history on the origin of Ashtanga, debunk some widespread myths, share some personal tips and tricks as well her own stock of stories and experiences. The weekend will culminate with led (traditionally counted) practice of the asanas (postures) covered during instruction.
The workshop is open to practitioners of all levels; whether just beginning to explore the system or looking to clear up any confusion, hopefully all attendees will fall in love with the divine details and keep these lessons close for a long time.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

One Love (Reggae walks with my dogs)

On the ride to DC this weekend I was reminded that my blog has not been updated in a while, and at the same time I totally realized that maybe people do read this blog. This has been a time for great change, and now I am finally coming to grips with the fact that I am pausing on this Philly life, and picking up somewhere else. This place has yet to be revealed, my bet is on either Chicago or Providence, RI.

I am again committing to blogging through this experience of change. Sharing this transition through the lens of yoga as a practice of teaching, and as the big picture practice. I am trying to fill in the calendar so that my time here in Philly can be shared with the large and fantastic yoga community. Be sure to check the website, stop into class, or fully immerse in a workshop (there are some great ones on the horizon.)