Mary Spindler, RYT-200
In 2001, I took my first yoga class as a suggestion in order to balance the training I was doing for my first marathon. The thing I remember most about that class was the diverse collection of people assembled on their mats. The other thing that stands out in my mind is the way the woman teaching the class, Sue, smiled and touched every student in the class…making all of us feel welcome and part of something.
It would be twelve years of practicing yoga, before I made the transition from student to teacher in 2013. But, as anyone who practices yoga knows, regardless of time spent, number of classes taken, or certifications earned, we are all forever students of this mysterious and beautiful tradition.
For me, the practice of yoga is so much more than time spent on my mat, or working with students and sharing my passion. It has become a large part of my life. It is the lens through which I see my self and others. Yoga teaches not just breath, and movement, and the integration of the two. The practice of yoga extends and lends itself to compassion for our selves and for those around us. Small victories on the mat lead us to be more daring and confident off the mat. Releasing judgement and shame through yoga can lead us to a more authentic view of our world.
Initially, I sought to teach the kind of class I would want to take. That would involve strong movement and eloquent prose. I loved the teachers that really connected with their students and drew them into the practice. I wanted to be “just like them.” Somewhere along the way, I realized I can’t be “just like them” because I am not them. I am me. I can, however, take the lessons I learned from them, and combine that with who I am to find my own teaching voice.
The classes I teach are about breath and strong movement, but they are also about connecting the two. I want for students to connect their bodies with their breath and see what can happen. I want them to be able to be present and in each moment. I would love for my students to find joy and strength, and the sense of belonging, just as I did in my very first class. Never knowing then where it would take me.
Be where your feet are.
The other things I love are my family, my friends, my dogs, old cars, new shoes, and red wine.