I was first introduced to yoga in the mid 60’s when I was 5 years old and living in Japan. My parents would take us every Saturday to a Zen-do, where we practiced zazen Zen Buddhist meditation. Because that form of meditation required silently sitting upright for about an hour at a time, we would have a yoga instructor come to our house to help prepare our minds and bodies for zazen.
My favorite style of yoga both to practice and to teach is founded on traditional Hatha yoga, however there are wonderful gifts from many different traditions to infuse my classes with variety, challenges and fun. I want my students to come away from class feeling refreshed, de-stressed, more grounded and centered and open in their minds and bodies.
My favorite yoga pose is downward facing dog. In this single pose, you get to stretch and work every muscle in the body. It helps to calm and center the mind and bring balance and length into the body.
The teachings of yoga are the guideposts for how I live my life. As amazing and beneficial as the asana practice (physical yoga) is, it is the other 7 limbs of yoga that truly shape how I approach every aspect of my life.
Beatrice B. Mattaway is the owner of Willow Tree Yoga, located at 17 Whispering Court in Bardonia. For more information, contact 914-588-4066 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For class schedule and more, visit WillowTreeYoga.net.