What is your name and what is your favorite style of class to teach, and why?
I identify with a hot and strong flow.
Describe your personal circumstances or experiences that made you want to share yoga.
I can’t differentiate one discrete experience but I do hope that joy of joining breath and motion is something I’m able to share.
What advice do you have to other sharing or seeking to share yoga with others?
I would offer: don’t take ones self too seriously, yoga is a joyful experience and I would hope that people learn to laugh and love the process.
Please describe a challenging moment that you have experienced teaching, how you faced that challenge, and what you learned from it.
Public speaking is part of teaching yoga and something I consistently find challenging. I constantly learn that making mistakes is ok, and that when I trip up in what I say, just to learn to laugh and keep going.
What pose or practice do you like to teach to help students feel empowered? To relieve stress? Please describe how you saw this practice work with an individual or group.
I think standing forward fold is the best pose to relieve stress, the process of releasing effort to allow gravity to open up the back and shoulders brings so many benefits.
How has sharing yoga affected you?
I think that growing up and living in Washington DC the mentality is very Type A, very perfect, very flawless, and when I started yoga my personal practice had that as a goal, I was going to always have the perfect posture with the perfect breath and always matching with the perfect yoga tights. I think that teaching yoga threw me into the deep end really quickly and let me accept my own mistakes as just part of the process, and to really appreciate making them, appreciate laughing at myself, and appreciate creating space in my class for others to try new poses and if they fall over to have the space to laugh at themselves and try again.
Could you describe any best practices in sharing yoga that you apply regularly in your classes?
The precept of non-attachment. In DC generally we are too often our professions or our educations, and yoga is such a wonderful way to let all of those things slip away and let us truly enjoy breath and movement.
What is your favorite thing to do around town?
I will never stop being amazed at meeting the people that come to town to affect change. This ranges from meeting people socially, at protests, professionally, socially, that have this internal fire inside them to make the world a better place. I guess that’s my favorite thing to do around town.
What is your favorite thing about the DC yoga community?
Love. in one word. The amount of love I’ve received and been honored to have been able to give to others has been life changing.
If you had to describe your life in the form of a yoga pose, which pose would it be?
Tadasana or mountain pose, stable and strong but vulnerable and open all at the same time.
How long have you been in DC?
I am one of the rare few that has been born and raised in the DC area. I’m the fourth generation of my family that has lived in DC, my great grandmother came to DC after being released from the Japanese internment camps in World War II and my family has been here ever since.
Meet Ben in the yoga classroom