Back to yoga teaching and blogging

In my everyday life in Vancouver, yoga plays a major role in my identity. People know me as yoga classmate, colleague, teacher, and blogger. People whom I’ve never met know me as YogaSpy; my blog is our connection. In contrast, my closest family members rarely mention my blog! They’re positive about it, but it’s not our main point of connection.…… Continue reading Back to yoga teaching and blogging

At the pool

Several months ago, I was standing in the pool locker room, preparing to leave after my swim. I was late, busy, and filled with free-floating exasperation. Suddenly I noticed someone wringing a sopping swimsuit into an ominous puddle on the floor. “You should do that over the drain,” I said, sharply. “Then you won’t leave such a mess…… Continue reading At the pool

What professionalism means to me

A few months ago, I had a little falling-out with my massage therapist. While temporary and amicable, it made me consider the meaning of professionalism. I met “Jane” in early 2010, when I decided to treat myself to massage (among my favorite splurges). She had her quirks, but I appreciated her long experience, unpretentious personality,…… Continue reading What professionalism means to me

Anger management 101

Outside my yoga life, I’m a writer and editor. Recently, as managing editor of a top peer-reviewed journal on urban planning, I observed a professor’s angry reaction to negative reviews. Actually, she was lucky. The editor didn’t reject her manuscript but gave her the option to “revise and resubmit.” But, almost immediately after receiving her decision…… Continue reading Anger management 101

Are you chatty with your yoga students?

One of my yoga-teacher colleagues wondered if she reveals too much of herself to her students. Before class, she might chat with students, and so they end up knowing bits and pieces about her life. Warm and outgoing, she calls herself an “open book” with people. But she questioned whether should be more “mysterious,” ie,…… Continue reading Are you chatty with your yoga students?

Do you have a Geeta story?

A rite of passage for Iyengar yoga practitioners is a trip to the Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute (RIMYI) in Pune—to study directly with the Iyengars. Of course, BKS Iyengar is 92. Unless you met him in the 1970s or ’80s (or possibly the ’90s), it’s too late to make a personal connection now. It’s probably…… Continue reading Do you have a Geeta story?

Does it matter whether you like your teacher? Or your students?

In Hawai’i, studying hula can be akin to studying yoga: it’s physical training, but also mental and spiritual practices. Like yoga, hula also comes in many flavors, from flashy tourist shows to serious halau (schools) whose members consider hula a lifestyle choice. An acquaintance (whom I’ll call Maki) studies with a renowned kumu hula (hula master) whose…… Continue reading Does it matter whether you like your teacher? Or your students?

Reciprocal relationships

In my third year of law school, I took an elective called “Law and Literature,” taught by John Jay Osborne, Jr, author of The Paper Chase, a novel (and movie and TV show) about a Harvard law student and his obsession with his intimidating contracts professor. In this offbeat course (even at Berkeley), we escaped “black…… Continue reading Reciprocal relationships

Ginger and karma yoga

For over a decade, among my closest friends was Ginger, a calico cat rescued from the wild. Beautiful, with striking markings, she had a feral streak and the classic temperamental calico personality. We had our roommate clashes; she was not the docile type and liberally used claws and teeth to make a point. Once, during…… Continue reading Ginger and karma yoga