I’ve been on the mainland for a little over a week now and yoga has been great so far.
I started in Long Beach, staying with my dear friend Julz and her partner Hannah. I taught two workshops at Olive Yoga Long Beach, which is owned by Elizabeth Bolla. Olive Yoga was a beautiful space, and Elizabeth is a quirky, fun and knowledgeable teacher. On Thursday the 13th I attended one of her regular classes and it was very sweet and thoughtful.
Friday, July 14th I taught my first mainland workshop, Riding the Waves of Shakti at Olive Yoga. We had just a handful of students, but I thoroughly enjoyed teaching it. I felt that everyone there got something out of it, and I received a lot of good feedback.
Me teaching during my Riding the Waves of Shakti workshop at Olive Yoga Long Beach on July 14, 2017.
I’ve never been one to worry too much about numbers when I’m teaching. I know eventually they will come, but when they don’t, I embrace the opportunities to connect so fully with whoever is there. There has been a part of me, prepping for this trip that’s been wanting a more solid teaching schedule, more booked workshops, more guaranteed income. Really though I know and I’m coming to realize even more, that this trip (and life in general really) is about the true, honest connections that we make along the way. It doesn’t matter how many students I teach if I don’t connect to them fully. Even if I only connect with a handful of people, if I make a difference in their life and they way they connect to others and the world around them, this trip will be a success. I know though, that I will connect with more than a handful of people. I can feel it building, naturally, organically.
In any case, the next day, Saturday, July 15th, I taught my workshop The Yoga of Falling, again at Olive Yoga Long Beach. I always enjoy teaching that one, and I find it really has an impact on students. Again, a handful, but that let us have lots of personal attention and really focus on everything. I had at least one students who hadn’t done inversions in a long time get her headstand against with wall and with a spot in the middle of the room and roll down out of it. Pretty awesome, if you ask me.
Assessing headstand practices at the wall before falling from them in the middle of the room during my Yoga of Falling workshop, July 15, 2017 at Olive Yoga Long Beach.
In addition to the workshops I taught in Long Beach, I was also able to have a private yoga session with my friend Julz, her Mom, Karen and her sister, Leanne and her partner, Hannah. Karen had a stroke about a month prior and has been recovering amazingly well. I was honored to share a yoga session with them and to meet and spend time with such a beautiful family and inspiring woman.
Private Yoga with (from L to R) Hannah, Julz, myself, Karen, and Leanne. What a beautiful way to spend a morning.
To top it off, Sunday before I left, I was able to stop by again and have a very sweet lomilomi session with Karen. For those of you who don’t know, lomilomi is Hawaiian healing arts. I have been studying lomilomi for the last year and a half with my Kumu Pomaika’i Freed at Pa Ola Hawaii. Please check out Pa Ola if you’d like more information, but briefly, similar to yoga, lomilomi recognizes the connection of body, mind, and spirit. On the surface it looks like body work and in a lot of ways it is, but there is so much more to it. On a deep level, it is a lifestyle, just like yoga, when understood and embraced fully. To be able to work on Karen was a gift. To say I was inspired was an understatement. She had a stroke about a month ago, and I have worked many people much younger and more “healthy” than her many times who were not as flexible or as balanced in the sides of their bodies. Truly, I was grateful to work on her. I am hoping to stop back through and see her again on my way back up the coast.
Lomilomi with Karen in her beautiful back yard in Long Beach. So inspired by her and by the work.
I plan to stop back through Long Beach on Monday the 24th to see a few friends for more lomilomi. If you are there and want to see me too, please let me know. For now though, I’m in San Diego. More updates to follow from here. I’ve got an outdoor workshop planned for Sunday the 23rd at 6:30pm at Balboa Park. Check my Facebook page for more details.