I love to teach yoga... it involves a wonderful blend of engaging the attention of the body and the mind. My background as a professor of cognitive psychology (scientific study of sensory and mental processes) and perpetual curiosity about spirituality and philosophy tends to make my classes interesting and multilayered. I would love to share this with you.
I am available for in-person (Verde Valley, AZ) or remote private instruction for groups or individuals in yoga nidra, yin yoga, and yoga basics. Descriptions of these modalities are below.
Please contact me to discuss your intentions and schedule a class!
Yin yoga is based on Taoist principles and the principles of interacting with the fascial system. As such, yin involves softening or sinking into seated or lying-down postures, following the body's path of least resistance, and staying in postures for several minutes. There are psychological/mental as well as physical intentions for the practice. At a physical level, yin can maintain or improve range of motion by gently pressing into joints, and the compression provided by the body's passive pressure helps release restrictions in the fascial system, which can have many positive effects. At a psychological/mental level, yin gently challenges us to be present with our own experience, whatever sensations, emotions, or thoughts it happens to hold (including the uncomfortable stuff we might normally not-so-consciously veer away from). In this way, yin can be viewed as a practice of acceptance in which we cultivate receptivity rather than reactivity. The real gift of this is that once we get better at listening (the yin) we can use this to act--intentionally--based on what we observe (the yin informs the yang). As it is, as a people, we are generally very unbalanced in the direction of acting all the time without taking a moment to observe--no wonder a lot of actions spin out of control--this is the equivalent of talking all the time and never listening (becomes nonsense!). So, think of the yin practice as support in developing a balanced conversational (life) strategy that involves both speaking and listening--how could you be better engaged with the world? Wear comfortable clothing in which you can keep warm (we do not work up a sweat!) and please have pillows and blankets or towels around for props.
Reset your nervous system (i.e., get out of the ubiquitous, addictive, self-reinforcing fight-or-flight response) by reorienting to your multidimensionality in this guided meditation. I am an iRest level 1 yoga nidra teacher, and have many years of experience studying and teaching about cognition, so I have a unique perspective and enthusiasm about the importance of journeying through levels of consciousness for healing purposes. As I can never say enough times to students: the only power you truly have is where and how you decide to focus your attention (but don't worry--this is ALL the power you need). So, learn to be deliberate with your attention and see what happens. All you need for this practice is a comfortable place to relax your body (this can be done lying down or sitting)
Yoga basics classes are gently active; they incorporate traditional standing, seated, and lying-down hatha yoga poses, as well as flowing movements. This practice is appropriate for beginners or anyone who appreciates a deliberate, intentional approach in which breath is used to coordinate movement and deepen body attention. Over time, this practice helps build strength, increase flexibility, and improve balance. It is important to me that I provide instructions that help you really feel into your body in the different postures, so we do not move quickly. Emphasis is on attention, presence, and oxygenation. Wear clothes in which your movement is unrestricted, and please have a mat, blanket or towel, and perhaps a yoga brick around for props.