My Roots
I’ve taught fitness since the early 90s as a certified personal trainer, and while teaching, began studying yoga at the Richport YMCA with Jim Shaw. It didn’t take me long to realize I wanted to teach yoga.  I received my first 200 hour teaching certification from the Temple of Kriya Yoga.

In 2007 I opened my studio, Focus Yoga in Brookfield. Today, Focus Yoga is a beautiful studio with two practice rooms and many great instructors. It’s been a wonderful place to grow as a teacher, as well as an outlet for my artistic side-- growing a business is a creative process.

In 2008, Focus hosted Daren Friesen’s 200-hour teacher training through Moksha Yoga, and I was able to fully take part, receiving my second 200 hour certification. 

And recently, I have received a certification as an Ayurveda Yoga Specialist from the Himalayan Institute in Honesdale, PA. This intensive training with Kathryn Templeton enables me to offer the wisdom of Ayurveda along with the practices of Yoga, a powerful combination.

In addition to my teacher trainings, I’ve had the pleasure of taking workshops with many other wonderful instructors, from daily classes to master workshops.  Aadil Palkhivala’s philosophy of dharma, Maty Ezraty’s and Tias Little’s studies of nuances in alignment, and an empowering teacher training with Seane Corn have shaped my own teachings. Through these teachers I rediscovered that there isn’t just one “right” way, that our own intuition and inner knowledge is a powerful source of information, and that we don’t need to be perfect to be true yogis. 

Philosophy
Yoga is a big part of my life; I have a personal practice that helps keep me balanced. It is also my job to share yoga with others, through my own teaching, and also creating and maintaining a space for other instructors to do the same. However, my students may not share that same level of immersion. They are grade school teachers, nurses, lawyers, accountants, neurologists, salespeople, students-- so many other roles than a yogi! They may come to the mat because of their low backs and tight shoulders, and we address those issues in class. But, our mats are actually big mirrors; what happens on the mat, our responses, our attitudes, judgments, joys and frustrations, are reflections of how we approach our daily life.  This is where yoga has its power.

Yoga is a tool for life. The philosophy gives names to human tendencies and mind states in which we have an awareness, and through yoga we can truly study this. Sharing yoga philosophy in my classes and how this ancient spiritual science applies to modern life is a huge part of my teaching.  The pose is about so much more than an arrangement of bones and muscles: it is about the mental response and moving the energy, or Prana, through the body.  Removing a tight and congested area of the body (or mind!) is only one goal, learning techniques to keep it from returning outside of class is another.

Regardless of the mind state a student brings to class, my goal is to have him leave empowered with tools to support him in his life’s work.


Credits:
Website Design: CyberToast Web Design and Hosting Photography: Mitchell Manz Photography and Steve Wilson