Beyond The Mat: Missy DiDonato

How do yoga teachers feel about their practice? What inspires them to keep teaching and keep practicing yoga? Get to know your Yoga One teachers outside the studio and off the mat. This month’s interview is with Missy DiDonato.


1. Why do you practice yoga? 

I practice for the benefit of my mind, body, and all around life issues 🙂

2. What was the most intimidating aspect of your teaching when you first started?

Learning to stop expecting people to like me.

3. What gives you the most joy as a yoga instructor?

Seeing the emotional release of a student during or after a class. Also seeing people at their best or most vulnerable.

4. If yoga were a food, car, smell, planet, song, artist, flavor, etc…it would be:  If yoga were a smell, it would be a fart. Because it’s necessary to live and comes in all different varieties!

5. What’s your yoga inspiration?

My 3 year old daughter, Olive. Firstly, because she’s so flexible and that’s proof it’s something we’re born with and it’s only our habits that make us inflexible. And secondly, because she is so present.

6. What classes do you teach at Yoga One?

I teach level 1 & 2 Classic Yoga on Thursdays at 4:30pm and an all levels Restorative Yoga on Fridays at 5:30pm.

7. Anything else you’d like to add, share, suggest?

I am constantly grateful for all of the yogis and non-yogis that come into my life. Thank you from the depths of my heart.

You can find our full class schedule here. Om!

SaveSave

Advertisements
Posted in Instructor Spotlight | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Yogi Reads: Mudras

by Olivia Hughes

Mudras: Yoga in Your Hands 

by Gertrud Hirschi

Summary: Mudra is a symbolic or ritual gesture in Hinduism and Buddhism. While some mudras involve the entire body, most are performed with the hands and fingers. The ancient practice of mudra can be used to relieve stress, practice presence, connect to your higher self, prevent illness, promote spiritual development, and so much more. Additionally, practicing mudra may help you become more open to and better able to focus on other holistic practices, such as breath work, affirmations, visualization, herbs, and nutrition, etc. Combined with intention, mudra creates a shift in your internal world, creating balanced healing from the inside out.

Why I Love It: A teacher once told me, “Teachers are here to share their knowledge and skills with others to help them grow. If you know something, share it. Educating someone is the most powerful thing you can do for them.” When I started teaching, I took this advice to heart and shared things I had found to be true; even if it fell outside of the mainstream.

I love this book because it adds another layer to my own yoga practice and teaching. The mudras help me connect more deeply to myself and my spiritual world. Yoga is so much more than a handstand or a warrior two – yoga is about a shift in your mind, a feeling in your heart. Yoga is kindness. Yoga is love. Yoga is connection. The seemingly small practice of mudra helps me connect with this deep level of yoga, and I feel compelled to share it with my students.

Recommended For: Those who want to deepen their connection to self, others and the present moment. The practice of mudra is so uniquely personal and portable – no yoga mat needed, no time in your schedule to set aside, nothing to see or watch. The back cover states: “This yoga in your hands can be practiced sitting, lying down, standing, or walking, at any time and place!”

I recommend choosing a mudra you connect with (there are hundreds) and trying it out once a day in your daily routine. This book breaks down how to practice each mudra step by step but also dives into using mudra to develop your spirituality.

Sample Practice: The Lotus Mudra (my favorite!) from page 150

Bring your hands together in prayer and then separate and open up the three middle fingers, keeping the base of the palm together along with the pinkie and thumb. This mudra is the symbol of purity.

Visualization: Imagine the bud of a lotus flower in your heart. Every time you inhale the flower opens up a bit more – until it finally is completely open and can receive the full sunlight into itself. The lotus lets itself be filled with light, lightness, warmth, love, desire and joy.

Affirmation: I open myself to nature; I open myself to the good that exists in every human being; and I open myself to the divine so that I can be richly blessed.

Olivia headshotOlivia Hughes
Contributing Writer

Olivia’s yoga journey began in 2003. She is certified in Vinyasa, Hatha, and Aerial Yoga and holds a Masters degree in Spiritual Psychology. She believes the mind, body, soul connection is sacred and encourages her students explore and expand within their own bodies and consciousnesses.

Posted in Yogi Reads | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Keep OM Trucking: Featuring Arati Lane

Do you take your yoga with you when you travel? 

Our Yoga One family has spread to all corners of the globe and we’re excited to share some of their adventures.

An Original Yoga One Yogi, Arati Lane has been teaching at Yoga One from day one. Yoga One began enhancing the well-being of San Diego residents and visitors in 2002 and Arati has been with us every step of the way. When she’s not teaching you can sometimes find her riding on her high horse. But her yoga keeps her humble. 🙂

Arati has been teaching Yoga since 1989, completing her first training with Sivananda. Arati currently teaches yoga classes and workshops for fertility, pre- and postnatal, infant massage, couples yoga, healthy backs, flow and hatha. She counsels in AYURVEDA and loves sharing these amazing life-enhancing methods to heal and maintain balanced health in all forms! She teaches at Yoga One Sundays at 10am. You can find our full class schedule here. Om!

No matter where you go, you can Keep OM Trucking with Yoga One! Visit Yoga One at 1150 7th Avenue to get your own hat and while you’re there, join us for class. 

SaveSave

Posted in In the Community | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Beyond the Mat: Kairou Chiou

How do yoga teachers feel about their practice? What inspires them to keep teaching and keep practicing yoga? Get to know your Yoga One teachers outside the studio and off the mat. This month’s interview is with Kairou Chiou.

1. Why do you practice yoga? 

I practice simply because I’ve experienced the myriad benefits of yoga physically, emotionally, spiritually. I feel stronger, more confident, more at ease with myself and capable of facing life’s challenges.

2. What was the most intimidating aspect of your teaching when you first started?

Being vulnerable. I was scared that I didn’t know enough. I thought, “Who am I to teach about yoga when I am still learning?”

3. What gives you the most joy as a yoga instructor?

Witnessing and experiencing personal growth for myself and for my students. I love to see students overcome challenges and obstacles and to share in their excitement and empowerment.

4. If yoga were a food, car, smell, planet, song, artist, flavor, etc…it would be: first thought… I don’t know why… sherpa blanket. Fluffy, white, clean, comforting.

5. What’s your yoga inspiration?

I see all of life as my yoga inspiration. Everything has become a yogic lesson – people, events, situations. Yoga has become my first response.

6. What classes do you teach at Yoga One?

I teach a Level 2 Flow class on Thursdays at noon. It’s an “advanced” yoga class, one that challenges not only the physical body but more specifically our mental and emotional selves.

7. Anything else you’d like to add, share, suggest?

Yoga is a practice that creates space, perspective, opportunity and accessibility for a life that can be fulfilling, gratifying, and empowering.

You can find our full class schedule here. Om!

Posted in Instructor Spotlight | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Moving into Kairos Time

by Laura McCorry

Time has started to unravel a bit for me. As I move further into this pregnancy, I’m falling out of routine, becoming less attached to the segmented hours of the day. This is probably a good thing. I wake when I’m finished sleeping (some days at 8:30, some days at 6am), I eat when I’m hungry (always, always snacks before bed), and I’ve found myself baking banana bread muffins at 10:30 at night.

In Walking on Water, Madeleine L’Engle writes about two different conceptions of time, “Kairos. Real time. God’s time. That time which breaks through chronos with a shock of joy, that time we do not recognize while we are experiencing it, but only afterwards, because kairos has nothing to do with chronological time. In kairos, we are completely unself-conscious and yet paradoxically far more real than we can ever be when we are constantly checking our watches for chronological time.”

The birth of a child is a moment like this, always outside of time. But you are also ushered into kairos at the death of a loved one. (I remember being shocked when I realized that practicing savasana, or final relaxation, in yoga is also a way of practicing death. It’s translation is corpse pose, after all.)

How can you practice both life and death with grace? I think the word that matters most is practice (meditation). Or perhaps grace. For me, moving into kairos is the same as practicing meditation. You allow yourself to move outside time, into space that is neither here nor there, you are not awake or asleep, you simply ARE.

The paradox of life is that we need both kairos and chronos. I need the immediate, tactile chronos, the skin, muscle, and bone of my hands dusted in flour, forming a dough, placing it in the oven, setting a timer (because humans being can move outside time, but yeast, water, and flour cannot if they are to become bread.) And I need those moments of timelessness, of seeing the moment arrive and stepping into it whole-heartedly, whole-bodily: when my toddler bumps her head and needs to be held RIGHT NOW, so I drop everything and cradle her in my arms.

I hope you are gifted the experience of time in all its splendored variation. The moments that are breath-giving and the moments that take your breath away. Moments of kairos when you allow yourself to be fully present; when you take in whatever sensation, thought, or emotion is most present, but practice not letting it define you. And when you need it most, I hope you find those life-affirming moments of chronos, of baking late at night, a solid grounding in time as we most often know it.

We hope to help you find that Kairos time on your mat at Yoga One, click here to view our schedule.

Laura McCorry

Laura McCorry
Contributing Writer

Yoga and Laura had an on-again-off-again relationship from 2004 until 2009 when they decided to move in together and there’s been no looking back since. Passionate about both yoga and writing, Laura loves to introduce others to the joys and benefits of yoga and healthy living.

Contact: laura(AT)yogaonesandiego(DOT)com

SaveSave

Posted in Reflections, Yoga 101 | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Yogi Reads: Crystal Muse

by Olivia Hughes

Crystal Muse: Everyday Rituals to Tune In to the Real You 

by Heather Askinosie and Timmi Jandro

Summary: I believe an ancient, inner wisdom resides within each of us. We feel it, we know it, but how do we stay connected to it in a fast-paced world that is filled with distractions and responsibilities? The answer is different for everyone. I’ve found that crystal rituals, continual practices like yoga, healthy boundaries, and a certain amount of discipline are necessary for me to feel balanced and fulfilled in life.

Crystal Muse is potent with wisdom and filled with practices that were learned, shared, or experienced through over 25 years of research, world travel, and spiritual quests. Heather and Timmi also chronicle their journey to create the website Energy Muse to share this passion, despite how challenging it was to start their business well before crystals became more mainstream. From creating more abundance in your life, to calling on your soulmate, this book will give you step by step tools to use crystals and intention to manifest anything you desire.

Why I Love It: Crystal Muse really is one of my favorite books, I absolutely LOVE it! I have a lot of crystals and have been working with them for years, but I learned so much more from this book. You can feel how the wisdom and rituals from Heather and Timmi are the kind of resource you can’t Google. They impart a knowledge that only comes after years of experience and from diving headfirst into your true calling and passion.

Suggested For: All my crystal-loving, Palo Santo-burning, entrepreneur hippie friends out there – you will love this book!

There’s something of value for both the newbie just getting started working with crystals to the experienced veteran. It’s simultaneously light-hearted but deeply serious, healing yet playful, filled with knowledge but easy to read. Crystal Muse can be read cover to cover or picked up at random to discover a new ritual practice.

There can be a lot of stigma around crystals, the effect of their impact, whether you’re doing it “right” or not. My suggestion is simply to find a crystal you feel drawn towards and hold it in your hand during meditation. Get curious about it then sit there and wait, observe what comes forward and let that be enough. Less is more sometimes. If this resonates, try it, and let me know how it goes! And happy reading!

“Finally! A crystal book that explains how to use your crystals in the now age. With simple, crystallized rituals that can be done in under 11 minutes, Crystal Muse will take you on a journey within to transform your life from the inside out.” – Jason Wachob, founder and CEO of mindbodygreen and author of Wellth

Olivia headshotOlivia Hughes
Contributing Writer

Olivia’s yoga journey began in 2003. She is certified in Vinyasa, Hatha, and Aerial Yoga and holds a Masters degree in Spiritual Psychology. She believes the mind, body, soul connection is sacred and encourages her students explore and expand within their own bodies and consciousnesses.

Posted in Yogi Reads | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Keep OM Trucking: Featuring Denisse Ypina

Do you take your yoga with you when you travel? 

Our Yoga One family has spread to all corners of the globe and we’re excited to share some of their adventures.

Denisse Ypina is the go-to yogi. She loves to meet people and get out and about. Here she is rocking the Yoga One lid at the City Center Sessions. During this popular event, Yoga One and other fitness studios provide free classes in a Downtown San Diego city street or park.

The next event is scheduled for February 10th, 8am-noon. Yoga One leads a class at 11:30am. Denisse will likely be there. Click here to reserve your space.

In addition to assisting Yoga One with offsite events and TV segments, Denisse is also a graduate of the acclaimed Yoga One Teacher Training course, an ACE Certified Group Fitness Instructor, Zumba Certified Instructor, Nutrition Specialist and Dale Carnegie instructor. Phew!

No matter where you go, you can Keep OM Trucking with Yoga One! Visit Yoga One at 1150 7th Avenue to get your own hat and while you’re there, join us for class. 

SaveSave

Posted in In the Community | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Practicing Presence

by Laura McCorry

Lately I’ve found myself more drawn to silence, more drawn to sitting still and taking in the world as it presents itself. Life asking to be noticed in a small, quiet voice. It hasn’t paraded into my consciousness with fanfare and demanded attention. (There’s enough of that already, and we all know the strategy works, at least immediately.)

As Franz Kafka wrote, “You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.”

These are some of the moments that stopped me in my tracks, when my only response has been to sit very still observing, listening:

  • My daughter already in pajamas stacking blocks as high as she can into a tower just before her bedtime. 
  • The sound of my friend’s voice who tells me that in the middle of the night, she will ask her husband who recently died to go comfort their baby. 
  • The late afternoon sunlight illuminating a hand-brocaded Indian elephant on a square tapestry, how I see for the first time the sparkling gold threads.
  • The stark black and white text from a friend asking for prayers while she sits beside her husband in the ICU. 

There is much pain and suffering in the world. There is so much beauty and kindness. Very often, we only have words to offer each other. (Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? Is now the right time?) But words can only travel so far – it’s difficult for them to penetrate deep into another’s heart.

You don’t need to meditate on a mountaintop for years to learn that very often, the silence that already exists cannot be improved with words. What can we offer each other when there are no words? Only presence. Only prayer, which in my understanding, is presence offered at a distance.

There is a deep, listening kind of presence that passes directly into understanding and empathy. We’re not very practiced, as a society, at offering this type of comfort. But you can practice feeling it for yourself. Listen to the whisper of the world, asking to be noticed. Sit in silence. Breathe. You are here and you matter.

Laura McCorry

Laura McCorry
Contributing Writer

Yoga and Laura had an on-again-off-again relationship from 2004 until 2009 when they decided to move in together and there’s been no looking back since. Passionate about both yoga and writing, Laura loves to introduce others to the joys and benefits of yoga and healthy living.

Contact: laura(AT)yogaonesandiego(DOT)com

SaveSave

Posted in Reflections | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Keep OM Trucking: Featuring Kay Faryan

Do you take your yoga with you when you travel? 

Our Yoga One family has spread to all corners of the globe and we’re excited to share some of their adventures.

Sometimes you don’t need to travel very far to get a different perspective. Be a tourist in your own town! Longtime Yoga One student Kay Faryan chilling on the Sunset Cliffs in San Diego, California.

No matter where you go, you can Keep OM Trucking with Yoga One! Visit Yoga One at 1150 7th Avenue to get your own hat and while you’re there, join us for class. 

Posted in In the Community | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Predicted Yoga Trends for 2018

by Laura McCorry

Hello, 2018! We hope this new year has dawned bright and full of possibility for all of you. The yoga world has already grown and evolved so much, we thought it’d be fun to look ahead and imagine what the year might hold. Namaste!

  • Collard Greens: both kale and arugula have had their revival hey-days, it’s time for the original dark leafy vegetable to take it back old-school. If we can get Californians eating southern greens, maybe we can get more southerners practicing yoga. Let’s come together, ya’ll.
  • Yoga on Horseback: By now, everyone has heard of dog yoga, goat yoga, and even bunny yoga. But did you know you can do yoga on a horse? We feel a bit like Dr. Seuss (yoga in a house, yoga with a mouse) but you really can do yoga everywhere!
  • Yoga Therapy: Good news! Your doctor could actually write you a prescription for yoga. The International Association of Yoga Therapists established a credential program just last year which requires an additional 800 hours of study beyond the standard 200 Yoga Teacher training program.
  • Savasana-only Yoga Class: Hey, we can dream, right? But seriously, yogis around the world are becoming more serious about their practice and are starting to pay more attention to Restorative Yoga and Yin Yoga, slower practices with a greater focus on healing and meditation. It’s not all about mastering the latest arm balance these days! Phew, what a relief.
  • Moon Yoga: There are so many ways to practice yoga while enjoying Mother Nature – just get outside! They probably won’t compete with Beach Yoga or SUP (stand-up paddle board) Yoga – but watch out for Forest Bathing Yoga and Yoga in the Moonlight classes to start popping up. Bonus, you can bring your crystals for an extra boost.
  • Intention App: Feeling in a rut by setting the same intention every time you practice yoga? Download this super-simple app and each time you open it, you’ll find a heart-inspiring, chakra-aligning intention along with a short mantra meditation. I’ve done the hard part of coming up with the idea, now someone go develop it!
  • Underwater Yoga: Exercising in the water has tons of healthy benefits, but it’s always felt rather old… until now. Flow through a standing vinyasa sequence at your local swimming pool. You might want to bring a snorkel for the arm balances, though. Perhaps this would gain more traction as Mermaid Yoga? 🙂

What are your predicted yoga trends or requests for 2018? Let us know in the comments!

Laura McCorry

Laura McCorry
Contributing Writer

Yoga and Laura had an on-again-off-again relationship from 2004 until 2009 when they decided to move in together and there’s been no looking back since. Passionate about both yoga and writing, Laura loves to introduce others to the joys and benefits of yoga and healthy living.

Contact: laura(AT)yogaonesandiego(DOT)com

SaveSave

Posted in In the Community | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment