yoga sculpt

Meet Jen P, Teacher of the Month

July is the time for celebrating our love for our YBD Teacher of the Month, Jenny Penny! Jen P (on the schedule) has a great attitude, strong customer service skills, connection to her students, and her continued effort to grow and evolve in her teaching makes her an exceptional yogi and instructor. Come take her class! See her schedule and Q&A below:

Tuesdays:

YBD Restorative 1:15-2:15pm Elmhurst

Yoga Sculpt 7:15-8:15pm Wheaton

Wednesdays:

YBD 2 95 6:00-7:00am Downers Grove

Yoga Sculpt 6:00-7:00pm Downers Grove

YBD 1 7:15-8:15pm

Fridays:

YBD 1 8:00-9:00am Wheaton

YBD Restorative 1:30-2:30pm Downers Grove

YBD1 4:30-5:30pm Glen Ellyn

Yoga Sculpt 6:00-7:00pm Glen Ellyn

Saturdays:

YBD1 2:00-3:00pm Wheaton

YBD2 105 4:00-5:00pm Wheaton

Sundays:

YBD1 8:30-9:30am Glen Ellyn

Yoga Sculpt 10:00-11:00am Glen Ellyn

YBD Restorative 1:15-2:15pm Elmhurst

When and how did you come to yoga?

Every morning since I can remember I would wake up and go through a set of poses like cat/cows, forward folds, etc. At the time, I didn’t even know I was doing yoga poses. So, I guess since I was in this world I have been doing yoga.  I started taking regular yoga classes in college at a local gym where I fell in love with the mind, body, and spirit connection. I was always active in dance, volleyball, basketball, and running BUT nothing compared to yoga. Once I found it, I was hooked.

Why did you start teaching yoga?

I wanted to pass along the power of yoga. I went through some difficult health issues and yoga is where I found solace and vibrancy again.  I wanted to teach yoga to give others a way to relax, rejuvenate, and increase their health and wellness as I had done.Yoga created a peace and awareness in me that changed my life. So, I decided to leave my corporate job last year and pursue yoga teaching and my nursing degree. I jumped into teacher training Fall 2014.

What is your favorite pose? 

Chair pose. This pose challenges my patience, strength, and body awareness.  It allows me to find my fierce side and channel that energy through my breath. You sink into your chair and work through that mental frustration in the intensity to then release into the next pose.  It feels amazing to transition from chair to other more surrendering poses.

Who inspires your teaching?

My mom.  She has been my role model my whole life and has taught first grade for over 20 years.  Her ability to give her whole heart to what she does and her graceful teaching inspires me to shine my light to my students to fully be present. She tells her kids the bumble bee quote “Aerodynamically, the bumble bee shouldn’t be able to fly, but the bumble bee doesn’t know it so it goes on flying anyway.” – Mary Kay Ash.  When I teach I try to instill this in my students to look beyond their “limitations”, fears, or routine and allow new space and breath to take them to a place of growth. Also, current books I read inspire me. When words speak to me, I try to make a sequence that embodies that energy and inspiration.

Tips for beginners…

Don’t let fear hold you back from freely flowing and finding your peace. Just breath, smile, and accept yourself exactly as you are on your mat every day. Hakuna Matata –No worries just feel the peace and ease.

What’s your favorite quote?

“Peace is not something you wish for; it’s something you make, Something you do, Something you are, And Something you give away. –John Lennon

4 Week Shred Success!

Ann Fehser’s Shred Journey, courtesy of Ann:

“2016 began just as 2015 and 2014 had…overweight, stressed, with little upper body or core strength. Approaching 57 years in age I realized that all my reasons for being overweight and stressed were not going to go away unless I consciously did something about it. Restorative yoga was tremendous in reducing stress and increasing flexibility but did nothing for my other deficiencies and then, I found 4 Week Shred.

4 Week Shred is challenging and hard yet very rewarding. Teresa is a fabulous teacher and motivator who makes you feel comfortable enough to expose your biggest flaws. She takes her students at their present level of performance and modifies exercises for those who need low impact or those who are looking for that extra push. Yes, even burpees can be modified. You can trust her and Teresa’s growth mind set for each of her students was present each and every time we took to our mats or picked up our weights. My biggest obstacle with the experience was my disdain for cardio and jumping. But as the week’s progressed I was able to keep up with 80% of the cardio. Teresa’s modifications made jumping easier to handle and by the beginning of the last week I could do caterpillars and burpees (with modifications) with minimal trouble. Planks will still take time.

4 Week Shred also provided me an additional critical component for weight loss-a nutritional food plan. Recording food intake and the nutritional plan provided me the necessary tools to fuel by body properly. After these weeks I feel stronger, both physically and mentally. I lost weight and inches but it is what I gained from the experience that will have me coming back to 4 Week Shred in June. I gained self-confidence and have a belief that it isn’t about being perfect. It’s about effort.”

-Ann Fehser

We are bringing the 4 Week Shred to Downers Grove Yoga By Degrees! The program will run June 1st to June 26th and will include 2 nutrition workshops, a customized meal plan, and 3 weekly fat burning high intensity interval training workouts (appropriate for all fitness levels)! Come join a group of like-minded people to support, shred fat and find success in achieving your health and fitness goals!

We will have two information meetings on May 18th and May 25th at 7 pm in Yoga By Degrees Downers Grove.

If you cannot make the meetings and would like an information packet, or have any questions please email Teresa at 4weekshred2016@gmail.com.

If you would like to sign up for the June Shred, please click here  for the link, call 630-969-0820 or stop in any YBD studio. Our last program completely sold out, so if you would like to join June Shred, we encourage you to sign up ASAP as we have limited spots available!

For updates, follow 4WeekShred on Facebook

4 week SHRED

4 week Shred

Due to the success of our first session, we are thrilled to announce round two of the SHRED program at Yoga By Degrees! The 4 Week Shred will be starting June 1st at Yoga By Degrees Downers Grove.  The 4 Week Shred is a two part boot camp program designed to set you up for success in achieving your fitness and health goals- whether it is kick starting weight loss, building lean muscle while shredding fat or getting into the best shape of your life! You will learn how to fuel and move your body to achieve maximum, long term results. The 4 Week Shred will give you the tools and motivation you need to succeed.

Program starts: June 1-June 26

Sundays, June 12 and 26: 4-5:30pm Nutritional Workshops

Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays: 6-6:50am High Intensity Fusion Class

Due to the customized meal plans, nutrition workshops and coaching from the Shred Leads, we will have to limit the number of participants.

Want more information? We are holding two information meetings on the following dates. Both Teresa and Susan will be there to address any questions or concerns you may have.

Free Information Meetings:

May 18, 7pm at YBD Downers Grove

May 25, 7pm at YBD Downers Grove

Can’t make the meetings? Want more information? No problem! Email Teresa at 4weekshred2016@gmail.com for any questions you may have!

Pricing

Yoga By Degrees Members: $275

Nonmembers: $400 (includes 1 month unlimited yoga!)

Meet your 4 Week Shred Leads!

Susan Rizzo, RD, LDN, CDE susan

Dietitian

Susan has been a Registered Dietitian (RD) for over 30 years. She is passionate about the value of eating right and exercising for its role in health. For the past 15 years she has enjoyed educating clients as nutrition counselor and diabetes educator for AMITA Health-Alexian Brothers. Over the years she has been involved with various weight loss programs including programs for the YMCA, Weight Watchers, and The Solution Program. Recently she has advised clients involved with The Daily Herald’s Fittest Loser program. Susan holds certifications of training in Adult and Pediatric Weight Management with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Her expertise in nutrition has helped many clients individualize their food choices leading to improved weight and health status. She is dedicated to educating people with the tools needed to self-manage their weight and meet health goals. A long time believer in the powers of physical activity she has enjoyed a variety of physical activity pursuits throughout her life including running, walking, yoga, tennis, ice skating, soccer, biking and dancing. She raised 4 children and is sensitive to the needs of busy lifestyles.

 

Teresa Larem Teresa 2

Yoga Instructor/ Yoga Sculpt Instructor/Shred Facilitator

Teresa has always been a lifelong athlete, starting with soccer in kindergarten and continuing with tennis, basketball, softball, track, yoga, dance and rock climbing. If it’s active she likes it! Teresa discovered Yoga sculpt in 2013 and has been in love ever since due to the intensity, fun and results she has received from sculpt and fusion. She began teaching Yoga in 2014 and soon followed with Yoga Sculpt in 2015 and has recently helped train the latest group of teachers at YBD. She loves teaching sculpt and fusion because she loves to have fun and motivate people. Teresa truly believes that being active is the key to a long and healthy life and hopes to make working out fun for her students. Her other hobbies include soccer, spin, walking her dog, reading, and yoga.

Are you ready to sign up? Enroll online, in studio, or over the phone at any YBD location by June 1st!

Meet Andrea, Teacher of the Month!

Andrea TOTMThis November, we salute Andrea as our YBD Teacher of the Month! Andrea is young in her teaching career with Yoga by Degrees but has already made such an impact on our community. We are so inspired by Andrea’s passion for Yoga Sculpt and her drive to build confidence. She is a team-player–always eager to help out at every chance possible. Thank you, Andrea, for being consistently early, enthusiastic, energetic, and excited to be at Yoga by Degrees!

Sundays, 8:30am Sculpt Fusion in Downers Grove

Sundays, 10:15am Yoga Sculpt in Downers Grove

Mondays, 6pm Yoga Sculpt in Downers Grove

Wednesdays, 12pm Yoga Sculpt in Western Springs

Wednesdays, 7:15pm Yoga Sculpt in Western Springs

Thursdays, 6am Sculpt Fusion in Downers Grove

Fridays, 12pm Yoga Sculpt in Western Springs

Saturdays, 9am Yoga Sculpt in Wheaton

Get to know Andrea more:

When and how did you come to yoga?

I first came to yoga March 2nd 2014 (I looked it up in our computer system because I was curious of what the exact date was).  I started like many people do; I did the free week, bought the groupon, and then I was hooked and signed up for the unlimited membership. Yoga By Degrees was my very first experience with yoga.  I was so burnt out on my current exercise routine, I needed a break, and I needed a change.  Never in a million years would I have thought that yoga would be for me, but it turned out to be exactly what my body and soul needed.

Why did you start teaching yoga?

I started teaching yoga because I became addicted to the way I felt after a class.  That raw, blissful, anxiety-free “yoga high” is REAL and I wanted to make other people feel how I felt.

What is your favorite pose, and why?

My favorite pose is half-moon.  When I first began yoga I was that person that refused to use props.  I would twist and force myself into positions that my body really didn’t want to be in just to “get into a pose.” Funny thing was, forcing my hand to the floor or my arm around my back was doing the exact opposite of what I thought it was.  My alignment was all off, my postures were a disaster, but I thought they were great because “Wow! My foot is so high, or my hand is all the way to the ground!” It wasn’t until a teacher at YBD brought me a block in half-moon that I really felt the pose for the first time.  My chest was open, my hips were open; I needed that block, and still use a block in half-moon (and a variety of other poses) to this day.  Learning not to force my body into postures, and that it’s ok to be where I’m at has taken my yoga practice to a whole new level, and I learned that in half-moon.

Who inspires your teaching?

My mom inspires me daily, on and off my mat.  She is an amazing mother, woman and role model.  She is also the most supportive person in my entire life.  She has been there to celebrate with me at the highest of highest and also there to help me pick up the pieces at the lowest of lows.  I would not be where I am today without her continuous love and support.  And while she cannot take any of my classes (she has been in a wheelchair since she was 13) I dedicate almost every practice to her so she’s always there in my heart.

Tips for beginners…

My best recommendation for beginners is to try every class.  It was nearly 6 months until I tried a restorative class because “that just wasn’t for me.” Wow was I wrong! You really don’t know what’s going to resonate with your body and soul until you try it.  So use that free week to try as many styles as possible.  Also know that you are perfect exactly where you are.  Your downward dog might not look like your neighbor’s downward dog, but who cares!? A very wise YBD teacher once told me, “what happens when your heels touch the ground in that pose? Absolutely nothing.” That really resonated with me.  Made me realize that I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be, and that’s perfect.  My hope would be that every beginner could learn that a lot sooner than I did.

What is your favorite quote?

“Get your fire back, its not over until God says its over. Start believing again, start dreaming again, start pursuing what God puts in your heart.” I absolutely love that quote! You don’t need to be religious for that to resonate with you.  Its basically saying, you may be down, but you’re not out.  As long as your heart is beating and there is air in your lungs, you are still in this!  Get out there and be the “you” you’ve always dreamed about being.  It’s never too late!

Meet Kate, YBD Teacher of the Month!

When you meet Kate and her permanent smile, you are filled with lightness and positive energy. She always has an amazing attitude and outlook on life that inspires her classes and the teachers and students of the YBD community. Kate is very generous with her time and dedicates all of her attention wholeheartedly to whatever she is doing, whether it is running marathons, making wholesome homemade foods, working with her pups or sharing her love of yoga with others. Check out Kate’s current schedule:

2pm YBD Hot, Sundays in Wheaton

6am YBD1, Mondays in Elmhurst

4:30pm Yoga Sculpt, Mondays in Wheaton

6pm YBD2, Tuesdays in Wheaton

7:15pm Yoga Sculpt, Tuesdays in Wheaton

6am YBD2, Wednesdays in Downers Grove

10am Sculpt Fusion, Wednesdays in Wheaton

9:30am YBD1, Thursdays in Downers Grove

4:30pm Sculpt Fusion, Thursdays in Downers Grove

Get to know Kate a little more:

When and how did you come to yoga?

I started practicing yoga regularly in 2011 as a way to increase my range of motion. At the time I was training for my first half marathon, and my tight hamstrings needed some extra love. In 2014 I found Yoga By Degrees and it’s been a yoga home ever since!

Why did you start teaching yoga?

I’ve always had a passion for connecting with people, and yoga is a beautiful way to do so. I worked in international education immediately following college and thought that my communication with students would be personally fulfilling, but after a few years I hardly recognized myself. There wasn’t enough yoga and running in the world to counteract the stress of my job. My eating and sleeping habits weren’t healthy, and I quickly found myself feeling on the verge of tears on a regular basis. I’d been thinking for some time about becoming a yoga teacher, but I’d always kept it in my heart as this “one day” desire. But a few weeks later my husband turned to me out of no where said, “You know what? I think you should be a yoga instructor!” Talk about an ‘ah-ha!’ moment. Less than a week later I put in my notice at work and signed up for the Yoga By Degrees 200h YTT program. And as they say, the rest is history!

What is your favorite pose?

That’s like asking me what kind of dessert is my favorite…all of them! But if I had to choose, Camel Pose would be the winner. Funnily enough, Camel Pose used to be my nemesis. Teachers would cue it in class and I’d think, “No! Anything but that!,” because Camel would cause all sorts of emotions to surface which I didn’t want to address. But after purposefully integrating it into my personal practice, I’ve come to welcome the sensations and I particularly love the opening of the heart. There’s something liberating about making yourself open and vulnerable. Now instead of leaving Camel with emotions flailing, I’ve found a way to feel lighter and ready to embrace the feelings it inspires.

Who inspires your teaching?

I don’t want to sound cliche, but I’m truly inspired by everyone who shows up on their mat. As a runner, I’ve always said that the hardest part of any run is just getting out of the door. And I feel the same is true with yoga. The most difficult part of practicing can simply be making the time and commitment to make it to your mat in the first place. It’s so easy when we’re pulled in a million different directions to put the needs of others first, but I’ve learned through personal experience that in order to love and support those around us that we first have to make our personal well being and health a priority. When I come to my mat, I leave a lighter and happier self. It’s my hope that I can guide students to a similar feeling of self love, acceptance and willingness to then spread that joy to others.

Tips for beginners…

Embrace the newness of it all. It can be scary to try something out of your comfort zone, but instead give yourself permission to have an open mind and heart. I’m a big encourager of laughter, both in and out of class – find joy through laughter and let the rest go!

What’s your favorite quote?

“Whether you think that you can, or think that you cannot, you are right.” – Henry Ford
Who doesn’t love a little self empowerment? This quote reminds me that many boundaries are self imposed, and that once I break them there’s no limit to where I can go.

Meet Alex, YBD Teacher of the Month

This September, we tip our hats to Alex, our Teacher of the Month! Alex’s fierce energy and motivation that she gives off will blow you away. Alex is a mother who has been teaching for 7 years and was a scientist before that (Who knew? You’ll have to ask her about that one!). We are so grateful to have her as a mentor and leader in our community pushing our sculpt students and teacher trainees out of the comfort zone and into new thresholds of growth and change. Thanks, Alex for all the passion you give in your teaching and presence around Yoga by Degrees!
Here is Alex’s current permanent teaching schedule:
12pm Sculpt on Mondays in Western Springs
9:30am Sculpt on Tuesdays in Elmhurst
9:30am Sculpt on Thursdays in Western Springs
4:30pm Sculpt on Thursdays in Western Springs
6pm Sculpt on Thursdays in Western Springs
9am Sculpt on Fridays in Downers Grove
9am Sculpt on Saturdays in Elmhurst
Get to know our girl a little more below:
When and how did you come to yoga?
I started yoga 7 years ago after the birth of my last son.  Like many avid runners, I used yoga to cross train.  I realized pretty quickly that I loved one thing more than running:  YOGA!
Why did you start teaching yoga?
I started teaching at the urging of my yogi friends who felt I had the form and the heart to teach others.
What is your favorite yoga pose?
My favorite pose is a handstand because it took overcoming lots of fears and a lot of time for me to get there!
Who inspires your teaching?
My children and husband inspire my teaching hands down.  It’s important to be happy at what you do and to feel good about yourself.  That positive karma affects everyone in your life!  Plus I think it’s great for my boys to see their mom work outside of the home doing something she loves.
Tips for beginners?
If you’re just starting out at any of our studios, stop and talk to people…anyone!  Yoga is all about the community and friends you make.  Hop into a class confidently and don’t take yourself too seriously.  Remember :  “The expert in anything was once a beginner.”
What’s your favorite quote?
I am the MUSIC sculptor!!!
“One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain.”
Bob Marley

Meet Margaret, Teacher of the Month!

Margaret practicing Warrior 2.

Margaret practicing Warrior 2.

This July we are celebrating our very own, Margaret. Her dedication and positive energy have been an amazing contribution to the YBD community. Margaret, we want to thank you for the healing classes you have offered to our students. Thank you so much for the your critical bailouts with subbing whatever class or shift is out there and for saving the YBD staff countless times. Thank you for your sweet smile and constant kindness.

You will find Margaret teaching and subbing all class formats at all studios. There are her permanent classes on the current schedule:

Sundays, 9:00am YBD1 Western Springs

Wednesdays, 6:00pm YBD1 Western Springs

Wednesdays, 7:15pm Sculpt Western Springs

Read on to get to know sweet Margaret more:

When and how did you come to yoga? 

It was my husband Bob, my high school sweetheart and love of my life who gave me a yoga mat and video for Christmas one year.  The video taught me the basic poses and gave me the confidence to attend a class.  Since then I’ve been to countless classes as a teacher and as a student.  It wasn’t long before I discovered that yoga is so much more than the physical poses.

Why did you start teaching yoga?  

Yoga makes me feel good from the inside out so it felt natural to deepen my knowledge and share what I learned with others.

What is your favorite pose?  

I especially like the Warrior Poses.  Warrior poses and their variations teach us stamina, stability, strength and serenity.

Who inspires your teaching? 

I am inspired by many yoga teachers including all those I have the privilege to work with at YBD.   I’m inspired by the ancient yoga philosophy and modern psychology that encourages self inquiry and acceptance.  Lastly, I’m inspired by all the students whom are dedicated to their practice, embrace change and find joy, power and approval within.

Tips for beginners… 

Dress in comfortable exercise clothes.  A fitted shirt/top or one that can be tucked in.  Have a light snack an hour or two before class.  Arrive early, if possible, bring water and a sense of humor.

What’s your favorite quote? 

Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony.  By Mahatma Gandhi

Meet Shaun, Teacher of the Month

Shaun in Ardha Chandrasana, Half Moon Pose

Shaun in Ardha Chandrasana, Half Moon Pose

This month we celebrate Shaun as our Teacher of the Month. Shaun has been loyal to Yoga by Degrees as a student first, then a teacher trainee, and now an amazing teacher. His gentle but strong energy will disarm your stress and ground you throughout class. Also try to guess where he is from by his accent… 🙂

He subs at every opportunity but check out his permanent classes on the schedule:

6am YBD2 95 on Mondays in Western Springs

6am YBD2 95 on Fridays in Downers Grove

4pm YBD2 105 on Saturdays in Wheaton

2pm YBD2 105 on Sundays in Wheaton

4pm YBD2 95 on Sundays in Wheaton

When and how did you come to yoga?

Some time in 2010, my wife encouraged me to join her at a Bikram class. She thought I would love the sweat.

She was right. But even though I attended Bikram classes and YBD sculpt (and only sculpt) for close to 4 years,

I didn’t know anything about yoga (there’s 8 limbs?) until I started my teacher training in 2014. Once I began

to understand yoga’s breadth and depth, I was in the tank.

Why did you start teaching yoga?

I would come to YBD sculpt classes with my daughters, and after one of our instructors announced upcoming

training, they suggested I consider it. Ultimately, I chose to proceed for three reasons: teaching fit similar

things I had done in my past that I enjoyed, I was curious to learn more about yoga and as a big fan of YBD, I

saw it as an opportunity to be more integrated into it’s community. In a weird twist of fate, I had planned to

do sculpt training, but it wasn’t available at the time, so I jumped into the 200 HR program. That experience

has been transformative for me. Shit happens for a reason.

What is your favorite pose?

The next one.

Who inspires your teaching?

While my hope is to be a helpful guide to all that come to their mats, I am particularly inspired to serve those

folks who are new to yoga.

Tips for beginners…

I would offer three tips:

Do your thing and don’t worry about anyone else.

If you’ve lived by the no pain, no gain mindset, let it go.

It’s always a good time for a child’s pose.

What’s your favorite quote?

“To make the most of every minute, to fully embrace every second of every day, we have to accept we

only have a limited number of minutes and seconds left.”

Meet Elizabeth, YBD Teacher of the Month

Elizabeth working on her favorite arm balance right now, Eka Pada Koundinyasana II.

Elizabeth working on her favorite arm balance right now, Eka Pada Koundinyasana II.

Elizabeth B on the schedule, this girl brings amazing positivity and energy to her Yoga Sculpt classes at YBD. If you know Elizabeth, you know she loves to laugh, have fun and not take things too seriously. At the same time, you will still get worked and will be sore from her invigorating classes! When she’s not teaching sculpt, Elizabeth is getting her 200 hour Yoga Certification, working, and soon will be headed off to grad school. Here is her weekly schedule:

4:30pm Sculpt on Thursdays in Downers Grove

8:00am Sculpt on Fridays in Western Springs

9:30am Sculpt on Fridays in Western Springs

8:30am Sculpt on Sundays in Western Springs

10:00am Sculpt on Sundays in Western Springs

Check out her answers below to get to know Elizabeth better:

When and how did you come to yoga?

I practiced on and off for a few years, but I really started my yoga journey in 2013. I was looking for something to give me a good workout, and help me stay grounded. Soon enough it was as if my mat was holding me responsible and I had to show up every day! I loved it!  I gave Yoga Sculpt a try at YBD that summer in June, and found myself signed up for teacher training in July. Once I found the courage to extend my practice to level 1’s and 2’s I found that I really enjoyed it and wanted more knowledge to take to my sculpt classes! I am now 200 hour certified!

Why did you start teaching yoga?

I kept hearing from people that yoga is so great for the mind. I thought if something is so great physically and mentally, I want to give it a try. It was also a perfect replacement for running. Now in 2015 I have found so many physical, emotional, and spiritual benefits through my yoga practice that I am still amazed and surprised by them every single day. These benefits spread through my life like wildfire whether I’m stuck in traffic, having a bad day, or just need to breathe.

What is your favorite pose?

My favorite pose is Warrior 3! Some days it is super easy to get into and other days not so much. It is a pose that consistently challenges me mentally and physically.

Who inspires your teaching?

My students are a huge inspiration of teaching. They inspire, encourage, and motivate me to teach them! They are my second family and I appreciate them all so much. My mentors Jill Keuhn and Nicole Orr are also huge inspirations to me and encourage me to consistently grow inside and out.

Tips for beginners…

My tips are exactly what I say to my sculptors everyday ….If you fall out of the pose 4 times, get into 5 times. Just keep trying. The only secret to a sculpt class it to BREATHE and BELIEVE in yourself.

What is your favorite quote?

“Don’t waste your life in doubts and fears: spend yourself on the work before you, well assured that the right performance of this hour’s duties will be the best preparation for the hours or ages that follow it.”

Meet Brandon, Teacher of the Month!

brandon

Get to know our Teacher of the Month, Brandon! Brandon is a 200 hour certified instructor who teaches vinyasa and sculpt at our Wheaton and Downers Grove locations permanently, and he could be found subbing all around town. Brandon’s classes are lead with his powerful voice, intelligent sequencing, and thorough cueing. See below for more details!

Check out his current teaching schedule:

Mondays, 9:30am YBD2 Wheaton

Tuesdays, 12:00pm YBD2 105 Downers Grove

Saturdays, 2:00pm Yoga Sculpt Wheaton

When and how did you come to yoga?

Yoga came to me, in my living room, on VHS tape. I started out a little over fifteen years ago with my mother.

Why did you start teaching yoga?

I was just going with the flow; fresh out of university and in need of fulfillment, I found myself signing up for a 200hr training. It was definitely one of the best decisions I’ve made.
What is your favorite pose?

Peacock! Whenever I go out and get to talking with people they always ask me if I can do anything cool. I say, “Oh, you wanna see me Peacock?” That usually gets ’em.

I am currently working on my one handed!

Who inspires your teaching?

I can draw inspiration from almost anything, but the reason I keep coming to my mat; the reason I speak to others who will listen is in hopes that maybe they too will hear, see, feel how beautiful the place we reside is. It’s a shame that we live on a planet where so many people take life for granted, but if I can help one person be reminded that this spinning rock is all there is to it, well, then that makes it worth it. There’s so much to be happy about when pain and suffering are removed. That love for being allowed to live in comfort is what inspires me; I listen intently to and try to share with whoever feels the same or wants the same.

Tips for beginners

There’s no reason to ever be hard on yourself. This life is a growing one and to go without an error is to expect the impossible. Fall down! Be stiff on one day and more open the next. It’s all part of a full understanding. You have to know weakness before strength. Embrace it, every challenge, every step of the way is all something to look back upon and say, “Wow, I came a long way”

 

What’s your favorite quote?

“Dude, suckin’ at somethin’ is the first step towards being sorta good at something” -Jake the dog