Sunday, December 19, 2010

Au Revoir 2010! 2011...

Well, we're in that eerily dark last few day countdown to the Solstice. I love this time of year because it prepares me for my winter practice; the inner migration and conscious hibernation...
This is the time when Shiva visits and dances on the old and out-dated, making way for the new and the fresh!

It's a time of celebration; a time of intention setting, and a time of sharing.

Before bidding you a wonderful holiday, I wanted to give you my 2011 teaching schedule, class card plan, and a few hints as to the workshops and retreats to come....

My last two public classes for the year are this weekend, Friday 17 Dec and Saturday 18 Dec. Private sessions go through 23 Dec.
I return to teaching on 31 Dec.

Special Holiday Classes:
First, I will be teaching a special New Year's Eve Soft Candlelight Flow at Centre de Yoga du Marais, 31 Dec 18h30 - 20h.
On this most auspicious night, we will reflect on the year that has past in a warm, soft, nurturing environment. If you are craving a quieter experience, before your night of partying, please join me!
Please RSVP by 30 Dec. (Class cards are welcome)

Next, I will be offering a special New Year's Day Bhakti Flow, also at Centre de Yoga du Marais, 1 Jan 12h30 - 14h.
Come and set your intentions for the new year as you sweat away the toxins from the old year! You will feel refreshed, awake, and alive!
Please RSVP by 30 Dec. (Class cards are welcome)

2011 Public Class Schedule:
Wednesday: 18h - 19h Vinyasa Flow, YogaHum, Montmartre, 18eme * New Class! * (class cards are welcome)
Friday: 18h30 - 20h Slow Flow, Centre de Yoga du Marais, 3eme
Saturday: 12h30 - 14h Bhakti Flow, Centre de Yoga du Marais, 3eme
Sunday: 11h30 - 13h, Community Class by Donation, Dates YTD, Centre de Yoga du Marais. All proceeds benefit Families For Children, a private, non-profit, non-sectarian agency that cares for over 600 destitute and mentally challenged children and adults in India and Bangladesh. This is a "kitchen counter" organization that is run entirely by volunteers and every penny goes straight to the orphanages and schools this agency has set up. (Class cards cannot be used for the donation-based classes)

2011 Private Class Schedule:

I have private class availability on Tuesday evenings and Wednesday and Thursday afternoons. If you would like to deepen any aspect of your practice, establish a home practice, modify your practice for pregnancy or injury, etc., please contact me.
One-on-one sessions can take your practice to a new level!

2011 Workshop and Retreat Schedule:

I will continue to offer the seasonal, quarterly workshops at YogaHum throughout 2011. The next workshop, Winter Restoration and Renewal, will be in late January. Exact date YTD.

I will be offering at least one -
Going Back to the Source: Yoga and Terroir Weekend Retreat in Normandy in Spring 2011.
I will be offering -
one week-long Going Back to the Source: Yoga and Terroir Retreat in Normandy in Summer 2011.
Lastly, I will be taking a group of Paris yogis to San Francisco for -
a week-long Going Back to the Source: Yoga and Terroir Retreat on the Pacific Coast in Autumn 2011.

Please let me know if you are interested in any of these retreats. Exact dates YTD and somewhat based on interest.

2011 Guest Teachers
This year, DogaYoga will be hosting senior teachers from the US and elsewhere to travel to Paris to offer the gifts of their teaching and knowledge. The teachers I bring have deeply inspired my practice and teaching and without them, I would not know you ;-) I am blessed to be a part of this lineage. The details are in the works and I will get it to you ASAP.

2011 Class Cards

All class cards are available for purchase now and breakdown as follows:

Unlimited (now - June) = €375 (this card gets you discounts on workshops and retreats!)

12 Class Card (expires 1 Mar) = €150

6 Class Card (expires 1 Feb ) = €90

Drop-in Class = €17

Holiday Gift Certificates (For you last minute shoppers!)
If you're considering holiday gifts for your friends and family, how about the gift of health and wellness? How about a yoga gift certificate?
I offer gift certificates for multiple public classes, private or semi-private sessions, and my workshops and retreats. Likewise, if you're interested in a retreat for yourself but concerned about the cost, ask your Mom/Dad/Husband/Wife/Bro/Sis/Lover/Pal to give you the gift of a retreat registration! It will be the most lasting gift you've either given or received.

I have a very good feeling about 2011!

If I don't see you before you check out for the year, have a wonderful, mindful, safe, and joyous holiday!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Celebrating Diwali, 5 November

Happy Diwali
Originally uploaded by JMike

Tomorrow, 5 November 2010, begins the five day celebration of Diwali, the Festival of Lights. Observed by Hindus, Jains, Sikhs, and some Buddhists the world over, lighting a row of lamps or candles signifies the triumph of good over evil, consciousness over ignorance, peace over violence, and love over hate.

More specifically, Diwali is the time to acknowledge the inner light; the bright, inextinguishable light that exists within all of us. It is a celebration of non-duality and compassion. When we are radiating our most luminous selves, there is no need to blame anyone for the suffering in the world, just a fierce desire to shine even brighter.

The countdown to the winter solstice has definitively begun here in France. The hours of daylight are dramatically decreasing and the air is crisp, thus the season of inner reflection commences. Let's dust off the lamps in our hearts to get through the dark months, shall we?

Tomorrow, here in Paris, we will celebrate Diwali with a Candlelight Flow at Centre de Yoga du Marais, 18h30 - 20h. We will flow softly, consciously, and perhaps even feel a flicker of the Atman.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Autumn Workshop - This Sunday

Il y a toujours des places disponibles pour l'atelier d'automne "Exploring the Mysteries of the Core" ce dimanche 24 octobre de 13h - 16h chez YogaHum à Montmartre.

Ce sera l'antidote parfait à la lenteur et à la maladie saisonnières. Apprenez comment extraire la force, la confiance, la vitalité, et la grace pendant ces mois plus sombres et froids.

There are still spots left for the "Exploring the Mysteries of the Core" autumn workshop this Sunday, 24 October from 13h - 16h at YogaHum in Montmartre.

It will be the perfect antidote to seasonal sluggishness and illness. Learn how to draw out strength, confidence, vitality, and grace in the darker, colder months.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

DogaYoga Autumn iTunes Playlist

Ask and you shall receive! Voila, an Autumn playlist as crisp as the air and the apples. This is my favorite time of year; change, purification, and fortification for winter.

Twists, core, and hips on the mat. Soups, tea, and scarves off the mat.

Go calm, steady, and strong (and break into goofy dance as often as possible).

Thursday, September 30, 2010

And on the Seventh Day...

God did yoga in San Francisco.

Sitting on a sunny hill in Bernal, watching the fog roll in front of Sutro, sipping a Four Barrel latte, as the haze of jet lag lifts...

Conditions couldn't be more perfect for graceful, purifying autumn flow at Satori Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

See you soon ~

Friday, September 10, 2010

Hello Bay Area!!

A little bird flew over here to France to tell me that the shadows are getting longer and the light is becoming more gorgeous, which must mean we're nearing my favorite Bay Area weekend of the whole year, i.e., the first weekend in October!

The pull is too powerful. I can't stay away!

I'll be back October 1, 2, 3 to share Going Back to the Source: Yoga and Urban Terroir Autumn workshop at Satori Yoga Studio.

Six hours of seasonal flow focusing on autumn purification, capped off with a seasonal style picnic in Dolores Park on Sunday afternoon.

France is so very lovely, but I miss the Bay and you all, dearly.
Let's flow together so gracefully, one more time ;-)

All details are on the flyer.

Registration is due by Friday, September 17.

Friday, September 3, 2010

You Can Take the Yogi out of the Bay Area...

but she will keep returning for her annual dose of that certain kind of love only San Francisco can serve up ;-)

The Going Back to the Source: Yoga and Urban Terroir Autumn workshop is October 1, 2, and 3 at Satori Yoga Studio. Three days of seasonal flow with a closing picnic in Dolores Park on Sunday afternoon. (Chef Russ of the GBS: Slide Ranch days is back!)

All details are coming as fast as I can get them to you.

The air will be crisp. The breath will be soft. Our practice will be strong.
I can already smell the waft of Gravenstein apples (and a Blue Bottle latte) from the farmer's market now...

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Rentree Schedule 2010

ça y est... On commence à sentir la douceur de la fin d'été et l'automne pointer le bout de son nez. J'espère que vous avez passé un été agréable, relaxant, rempli de bons moments et source d'inspiration!

Voici mon planning de rentrée, ainsi que des nouvelles au sujet des ateliers, retraites, etc.

Les nouvelles cartes de cours commencent la semaine du 6 septembre... Donc si vous avez encore une carte de cours d'été, vous avez jusqu'à ce samedi 4 septembre pour l'utiliser.

Cours collectifs:
Pas de changement...
− Vendredi, 18h30-20h: cours doux au Centre de yoga du Marais
− Samedi, 12h30-14h: Bhakti Flow dynamique au Centre de yoga du Marais

Les ateliers trimestriels auront à nouveau lieu à YogaHum, à Montmartre.
L'atelier d'automne aura pour thème « Explorer les mystères de la force centrale de notre corps », le dimanche 16 octobre. Durée: 3h et coût: 50€ (une réduction s'applique si vous avez une carte de cours). Merci de me dire très vite si vous souhaitez participer.

J'aurai également cette année le plaisir d'accueillir des professeurs confirmés, en provenance de San Francisco, pour des ateliers sur un week-end. Détails à suivre...

La retraite « Retour aux sources » en Normandie est reportée à l'automne, certainement au week-end de la Toussaint. Si vous êtes tentés par une retraite de 3 jours à ce moment là, merci de me le faire savoir. Je confirmerai la date selon vos réponses.

En 2011, il y aura au moins une retraite sur un week-end et une autre sur une semaine... Je réfléchis aux thèmes « Yoga à la ferme » en Bretagne et « Yoga dans les vignes » dans la vallée de la Loire ;)

On m'a demandé de revenir au studio Satori de San Francisco pour l'atelier « Retour aux sources: yoga et terroir urbain »: je serai donc partie du 23 septembre au 5 octobre. Mais je serai remplacée pour les cours collectifs des 24, 25 septembre et 1er, 2 octobre. En revanche, pas de cours particulier pendant cette période.

Cours particuliers:

Je donne des cours particuliers entre le mercredi et le samedi. Des créneaux sont encore disponibles pour des cours réguliers ou ponctuels.
Ces cours sont d'excellents moyens d'approfondir votre pratique, de créer une pratique chez vous, d'explorer les divers aspects du yoga, d'apprendre à modifier votre pratique pendant une grossesse ou suite à une blessure, ou pour une introduction au yoga... Si vous êtes intéressés, faites-le moi savoir rapidement et je vous donnerai les détails des horaires et tarifs.

Tarifs des cartes de cours collectifs:

* Carte illimitée (10 sept-22 déc., 30 cours) = 300€ (10€ / cours)
* 12 cours (expiration 1er nov.) = 144€ (12€/ cours)
* 6 cours (expiration 15 oct.) = 90€ (15€/ cours)
* cours à l'unité: 17€

Blog et site web:
Si les rêveries et pensées d'un professeur de yoga entre Paris et San Francisco vous intéressent, vous pouvez consulter mon blog
Quant à mon nouveau site web, il devrait être en ligne le mois prochain!

En cette fin d'été, à l'heure où beaucoup d'entre vous retournent au travail ou à Paris, ne traînez pas les pieds mais arborez un beau sourire de gratitude!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

What is "Going Back to the Source?"

My yoga retreats are called, "Going Back to the Source". I've had a few people ask for a bit more clarity on what this theme means. My big (and sometimes evasive) answer is that, like our yoga practice - and indeed life itself - it's a work in progress. But right now, this is sort of at the core of it...

Life is just energy moving through us. We can allow it to flow or we can allow it to stagnate in our being. Everything we say and everything we do will determine one or the other. The energy does not disappear when we die. There is no beginning and no end. The samskaras we were born with (the blockages preventing us from accessing our best selves) can melt away enabling the flow or they can grow thicker and act as a dam. Going Back to the Source is a conscious journey that starts with a simple decision: In this life do we choose to breathe, move, and act in synch with the flow of the universe or do we habitually align with our suffering, thereby compounding the suffering in the world?

Going Back to the Source is about making decisions - from what we consume to what we say to who we surround ourselves with - that support our greatest capacity for forgiveness, compassion, learning, creativity, and love. Anything else is just maya, a lie we tell ourselves as we put off and resist the love and joy available to us. Because at the Source of our being is a profound truth that we are ultimately connected to all beings, everywhere. We are never alone and our actions - conscious and unconscious - have an impact. At our Source we are perfect. We are beautiful. We are radiant. We are imbued with all the knowledge or wisdom we could ever need.

The Source is indeed a place of "...peace, love, joy, playfulness, and truth. When you're in that place in you and I'm in this place in me, we are One."

This is Going Back to the Source. This is yoga.

I was introduced to this wonderful, somewhat heartbreaking, but nonetheless honest and sweet story written by a courageous woman describing her journey. And she names her dog as her guru, so I immediately fell in love with her sentiments: "The Downside to Down Dog" by Kelly Grey.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Go Pooja

So in Basse Normandie, in the spring and summer, a beautiful thing happens - lots of lots of little farm animals are born. When you drive through the countryside, you see these little ones; all spindly-legged and wide-eyed, next to their protective mamas who are standing stoic and proud. They are grazing in grass pastures, with hectares and hectares of space; having been born into the most charmed scenario for domestic farm animals, ie, free-range and well-loved.

The baby goats are adorable and mysterious with their horizontal eyes. The lambs, while also adorable, are a bit goofy looking. But the ones who touch into the soft spot in my heart are the calves, les petite vaches.

Before this spring, I'd never really noticed the calves. I mean, I always thought they were cute, but I had never really looked deep into the huge, gorgeous, innocent eyes of a calf and felt so connected to something so very big.

There's a particular pair of twin calves in a pasture just down the way, who have touched me deeply. They are of the Limousin variety, possibly the oldest breed of cow in all of Europe. 20,000 year-old cave drawings found near Montignac, France, bare an uncanny resemblance to today's breed.

I have named them Ram and Lam, the energetic sounds of the Mulandhara Chakra, represented by the color red, the color of their fur...

In Hindu and yoga philosophy, cows are sacred. Their sanskrit name is "Go" and honoring a cow is "Go Pooja". It is believed that "...a cow is so spiritually pure that millions and millions of deities take residence in and around a cow. Thus the very space occupied by a cow is holy ground. Only very pure souls can take birth as cows. Humankind should realize the spiritual significance of cows and learn how these docile animals can contribute to our spiritual upliftment."

Everything from their dung to the dust stirred up from the ground on which they walk, is considered sacred.

I love folklore and as the story goes, when Krishna (often also referred to as "Govinda" protector of cows, and "Gopala" finder of cows) played his flute in the pasture, first all of the cows would flock to him. Then, all the cow-tenders/cowgirls, ie, the Gopis, would flock to him as well. The music was transcendent. They would all dance the dance of Bhakti, playfully and lovingly, infusing the Universal life-force with pure love and devotion.

Apparently, Krishna loved butter and milk. He loved it so much that as a child he would steal the homemade butter and stuff it in his mouth, hiding it from others. One day his mother caught him and demanded he open his mouth. When she gazed in the mouth of this son of Brahman, she was overwhelmed with what she saw; the entire Universe unfolding as if like a song.

At times I have wondered why I, a one-time vegan, ended up here, in this sort of obscure part of Basse Normandie/Pays de la Loire, surrounded by cows and so much butter and cheese. As of this spring, I'm starting to understand.

Shri Govinda.

Summer Schedule in Paris

Le mois de juin est déjà là! Incroyable...
Voici mon planning d'été au Centre de Yoga du Marais pour la période du 1er juin au 1er septembre. Mes cartes de cours couvrent cette période.

Juin ~
Yoga doux (tous niveaux), vendredi, 20h15-21h45*
Bhakti Flow (niveaux 1 / 2), samedi 12h30-14h
Retraite/atelier yoga** du 13 au 20 juin (des professeurs de remplacement assureront mes cours).

Juillet ~
Yoga doux (tous niveaux), vendredi, 18h30-20h*
Bhakti Flow (niveaux 1 / 2), samedi 12h30-14h
Je serai en congés du 25 juillet au 1er août. Aucun cours de remplacement n'est prévu car le centre sera fermé pour travaux de peinture.

Août ~
Yoga doux (tous niveaux), vendredi, 18h30-20h*
Bhakti Flow (niveaux 1 / 2), samedi 12h30-14h
Je serai en congés du 8 au 15 août (pas de cours de remplacement).

* Merci de bien noter que mon cours du vendredi soir ne sera à 18h30 qu'à partir de juillet.

** Il y a encore 1 place disponible pour le week-end « yoga et terroir » à l'occasion du solstice d'été, du 18 au 20 juin, en Basse- Normandie. Vous passerez un très bon moment, je vous le garantis ;) et pourrez profiter de longues journées ensoleillées, de la rivière proche, de la campagne environnante, d'une excellente nourriture et bien sûr de nombreuses sessions de yoga... N'hésitez pas à vous offrir ce plaisir!

Les cartes de cours pour cette période sont déjà disponibles:
Carte illimitée (soit 7€/cours): 155€
Carte de 12 cours (soit 10€/cours): 120€
Carte de 6 cours (soit 13€/cours): 78€
Cours à l'unité: 15€

Je suis également disponible tout l'été pour des cours particuliers. Ces cours constituent une formidable occasion d'approfondir votre pratique, de poser tout type de question, de travailler les variantes des positions, etc.

Cet été, je ne pourrai malheureusement pas donner de cours le mercredi soir au centre YogaHUM. Mes emplois du temps professionnel et personnel ne me le permettent pas encore, mais j'étudie la question pour septembre. En attendant, je vais y donner des ateliers ponctuels, dont je vous communiquerai les dates ultérieurement.

Voilà les nouvelles...
En tout cas, c'est le moment de profiter de l'été, de son côté magique, de l'énergie et l'amour qu'il dégage! C'est la période de Sri Krishna !
Je vous envoie à tous mes pensées positives!!

Hari Rama!


Wow. June is almost here!

My summer schedule is a little longer than the traditional French schedule ~
1 June - 1 September.
My class cards are for that window of time.

My public class schedule at Centre de Yoga du Marais is as follows:

June ~
Slow Flow (All levels), Friday 20h15 - 21h45
Bhakti Flow (Levels I/II), Saturday 12h30 - 14h
On Retreat** - 13 June - 20 June (will have subs covering the classes)

July ~
Slow Flow (All Levels), Friday 18h30 - 20h*
Bhakti Flow (Levels I/II), Saturday 12h30 - 14h
On Vacation - 25 July - 1 August (no sub coverage, the centre will be closed for painting)

August ~

Slow Flow (All Levels), Friday 18h30 - 20h*
Bhakti Flow (Levels I/II), Saturday 12h30 - 14h
On Vacation - 8 August - 15 August (no sub coverage)

*Please take note that my Friday night class will not switch to the early time slot until July.
**There is still one more spot left on the Summer Solstice Yoga and Terroir Weekend Celebration in Basse Normandie, 18 - 20 June. It is going to be good, I promise ;-) Big sky, long sunny days, flowing river, pretty cows, amazing food, and lots of yoga...Give yourself this treat!

Class cards are available for purchase now!

Unlimited (€7/class) = €155
12 Class Card (€10/class) = €120
6 Class Card (€13/class) = €78
Drop in classes = €15

I will be available for private sessions throughout the summer. One-on-one sessions are a great way to deepen your practice, ask specific questions, focus on modifications, etc. Through the summer all private sessions will be scheduled for Thursday - Saturday.

Unfortunately, I will not be teaching a Wednesday evening class at YogaHUM this summer. My schedule and life circumstances just did not make it possible. I will be exploring evening teaching opportunities at YogaHUM upon rentree. However, I will be hosting summer and fall seasonal workshops at YogaHUM. The times and dates are forthcoming.

Okay, open yourselves to the magic of the season; the spaciousness, energy, and LOVE! This is Sri Krishna time!

Hari Rama!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

DogaYoga Spring iTunes Playlist

I've been breathing new life into my Spring practice with this playlist.

(P.s - There are two additional - and beautiful songs on this list, by Damien Rose, who uses the magic of the Tibetan Singing Bowls to create his sound. Unfortunately, his album is not available on iTunes so if you're interested, check out his website. I like "Awakening" and "Renewal".

Friday, April 16, 2010

New Logo!

Well, not brand-spanking new, but fairly new. I was going to wait to unveil it with the new website. Alas, while the new website remains a nagging voice in the back of my head; a tiny little slice of self-imposed dukha that I'd rather not discuss at the moment, I didn't think it was fair to keep this branding masterpiece hidden for some later time.

So, voila!

Chetana Deorah, (the most amazing designer I've ever had the honor to work with) was given the obscure task of manipulating the AUM symbol to resemble a dog, without altering the ancient and auspicious symbol beyond spirit and meaning.

After long talks about the why and the what, Chetana's Indian roots stirring up some internal conflict, and our joint agreement to simultaneously honor and buck tradition, Chetana came up with the perfect embodiment of DogaYoga: a teaching and practice guided by timeless and unconditional love; always striving for greater grace, humility and healing; and the desire to be outdoors playing as much and as often as possible (preferably on a beach or on a farm, but a dog park will do in a pinch)!

And for those of you who read the SF Chron, (or who just generally love dogs and believe it's no accident what that word is in reverse) I was recently reminded of this story from 2006:
ALICIA'S STORY / A sad, sweet little girl gives comfort to a soul mate

(The update to this story is that Alicia is now in hospice care. The doctors have stopped her treatment, and she's living out her remaining days in pain but at peace, with Clarabelle at her side gratefully receiving belly rubs.)

Monday, March 8, 2010

GBS Summer Solstice Retreat, Normandy, 13-20 June

The time is here. No more deliberation. Just a commitment to pure unmediated, uninterrupted YOGASTRONOMIC bliss ~
Going Back to the Source: Yoga and Terroir Summer Solstice Retreat/Normandy, France.

Leading up to the summer solstice is the time when the sun is at its peak power and the earth is producing an enormous bounty. The days are long and spacious ending with gorgeous sunsets. In Normandy, the summer night sky is clear and immense.

Come join me for:

flow - 20+ hours of asana, pranayama, group and individual study, and quiet reflection

food - seasonal, regionally sourced, wholesome, nurturing, farm-to-fork meals prepared for you by traditional Norman cooks

farms - a chance to visit the farms, creameries, vineyards, etc and meet the producers, bakers, ranchers, cheese-makers, and vinters who provide the food, straight from the source

There will be cooking classes this year for those of you who want to break down the complexities of French cuisine.

Your home for a week will be a 400 year-old flour mill turned gite (traditional lodging) on the Mayenne River.

Let me know ASAP if you're interested and I'll send all the details.

Get back to the source of all that sustains and nourishes you! You'll be glad you did.

MC Yogi

This guy is amazing.

Statistically speaking, he and I should have crossed paths at another time and on another continent, but given the strange way the Universe works, we didn't.

We lived within a few miles of each other and knew many of the same people, yet our lives didn't connect until recently. I was in Paris, feeling alone and worried about my little 12 year old guruji. I got on the mat, asked Ganesha for guidance and the next thing that happened is one of my Parisian students (the amazing Claire!) sent me this: Give Love.

MC Yogi (aka Nicholas Giacomini) and his beautiful and equally talented wife, Amanda, own Yoga Toes yoga studio in Point Reyes Station, CA. They are offering the world an extraordinary gift simply by just doing what they do: teach yoga, play music, make visual art, and at times view the world through the lens of their dog.

How can you not love these people?

We're hoping to get MC Yogi and Amanda G. here in 2011. Paris could use a dose of their medicine.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

It's That Time Again

Time for a late winter hibernation and the Going Back to the Source: Yoga and Terroir Winter Weekend Retreat at Moulin Boistard in Basse Normandy/Pays de la Loire.

I'm so looking forward to spending quiet, introspective time with a small group of students from Paris who have dedicated their weekend to diving into the complexities of their practice, deep in the stark winter countryside; free from the distractions of the city.

Winter is a perfect time to slow down, conserve energy, calm the adrenals, nourish the inner sadhguru, and generally reconnect to the natural rhythms.

We are Going Back to the Source and will see you all next week (or in June!).

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Michael Watson & Mindful Integration Come to Paris!

I met Michael back in 2005 during a teacher training in San Francisco at Yoga Tree Studios. The first thing he said when he walked into the room was, "You are health professionals first, yoga teachers second." He didn't want us teaching another Adho Mukha Savasana until we knew how the body worked, anatomically, and could feel it from our skin to our bones. He went onto say, "As yoga teachers, you help students heal their injuries, you don't help create more injuries for them to heal." These statements seemed painfully obvious, but when he threw out a statistic that at that time, a shockingly high percentage of the injuries physical therapists in certain US cities were seeing were from yoga, my ears perked up and I realized I should be paying close attention to this guy. My future as a teacher, and the integrity of the practice itself, depended on it.

I developed a deep respect for Michael, his teaching and practice, from that moment forward. I learned more about functional anatomy and its application to yoga in 16 hrs with Michael than I had learned in any other course. And recently, I was reminded how brilliant he is when I heard him interviewed by Darren Main on Darren's excellent podcast, Inquire Within. Michael was talking about a new addition to his curriculum and repetoire - Kinesis Myofascial Integration (KMI). KMI is working with the web of connective tissue, fascia, throughout the body to create depth, space and a release, without overstretching.

That is why I am so excited that he and his assistant, Jennifer Dutch, agreed to my whacky plan of leaving warm, sunny Bermuda to come to cold, gray Paris in February to offer a weekend of anatomy instruction for teacher trainees and advanced level students at the Centre de Yoga du Marais. I convinced Michelle, the owner of the Centre and the director of the teacher training program, that Michael and his team are the real deal. She generously agreed and voila!

If you're in Paris the weekend of 26 - 28 February, and are interested yet haven't signed up, send me an email: amanda (at) There are ten spots left on Friday night and only two spots left on both Saturday and Sunday.


with Michael Watson
26 – 28 February, 2010
Centre de Yoga du Marais
72 rue Vertbois, Paris
€90 for the entire weekend

Centre de Yoga du Marais is pleased to welcome Michael Watson and his assistant, Jennifer Dutch, from Mindful Integration and the Bermuda Health Coop, for a weekend exploring structural anatomy for yoga.

Friday 26 February, 19h00 – 21h00
Structural Yoga and Intro to Kinesis Myofascial Integration (KMI)

This class will explore working with the fascial connective tissue of the body in yoga. Combining both flow and slow yoga, Michael will guide you on how to create depth, volume and space in the body without over stretching. Participants should have a good working knowledge of postures.

Saturday 27 February, 16h00-19h00
Yoga Anatomy for Teacher Trainees and Advanced Yogis I –

This session will be targeted to individuals training to become yoga teachers, as well as existing teachers and serious students of yoga brushing up on or curious about exploring anatomy guidelines for a beneficial and safe practice.

Sunday 28 February, 14h00-17h00
Yoga Anatomy for Teacher Trainees and Advanced Yogis II –

This session will build on the previous day, continuing to explore the topics of: range of motion in the joints, spinal health, and anatomy application to your teaching and personal practice.

Michael Watson is a highly regarded international presenter and certified teacher of Yoga, Pilates and functional anatomy. With over 12 years of experience in alternative healing modalities, Michael has successfully taught and assisted in many international training programs for Pilates and Yoga. With a degree in sports science, Michael brings an in depth awareness to his clients based on a strong understanding of anatomy, the body and its function. Graduating from the KMI (Kinesis Myofascial Integration) school of Structural Integration, Michael combines his knowledge of ‘hands on’ therapies with the educational aspects of movement.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

FB Group for Teachers and Studio Owners

I encourage all yoga teachers and studio owners to join the Facebook group: International Yoga Teachers and Studio Owners Mobilized for Haiti. We have access to eager, generous students and beautiful, clean spaces. Let's use our collective resources and energy to offer healing and relief to the survivors of this disaster, the scale of which is incomprehensible.

Post your fundraising events and all the details, so the word goes out far and wide.

When Arjun asked Krishna what the most powerful form of yoga is, he responded with "Karma Yoga".
Karma Yoga: Yoga of action, yoga of service.

The practice on the mat is just a preparation for a more meaningful and purposeful life off the mat.


Yoga Fundraiser for Haiti/Medecins Sans Frontieres

In partnership with Centre de Yoga du Marais, I am hosting a yoga fundraiser on Friday, 12 February with all proceeds benefiting Medecins San Frontieres/Doctors Without Borders.

MSF has been on the ground in Haiti for years, in the midst of all the political turmoil and previous natural disasters, providing Haitians with free, good quality health care.

Due to the earthquake, they are reporting that at least two of their medical treatment centers have been either completely destroyed or badly damaged (including the maternity facility) forcing them to move the surviving patients and set up outdoor tent hospitals. They are getting an overwhelming influx of critically injured victims and attempting to work in ghastly conditions. They also report that many of their staff were injured and not all have been accounted for since the quake, which assumes they are working short-handed.

I can't imagine what they are seeing and dealing with right now, but I'm humbled and impressed by their swift response. They are providing trauma healing and comfort deep in the middle of a situation that is unfathomable for most of us.
The Details:
This all levels Vinyasa Flow fundraiser for Haiti/Medecins San Frontieres with Amanda Dates will take place on Friday, 12 February at 16:30 - 18:00 at Centre de Yoga du Marais, Paris.
Address: 72 rue Vertbois
Nearest Metros: Arts et Metiers, Temple, Republique

The cost is 30 euros/person and space is limited to 15 students.
All proceeds will benefit Medecins San Frontieres/Doctors Without Borders.

Reservations are required.

Le cour de Yoga tout niveaux style Vinyasa Flow avec collection des fonds pour le Haïti aura lieu le vendredi 12 février, 16:30 - 18:00, Centre de Yoga du Marais, Paris.
Adresse : 72 rue Vertbois.
Metro: Arts et métiers, Temple, Republique

Le coût est 30 euros par personne et l'espace est limité à 15 étudiants.
100% du montant bénéficiera Medecins San Frontieres / Doctors Without Borders.

Les réservations sont obligatoires.