Hi, I’m Bettina. What I'm working on : Forget to slouch. Relaxing is freedom. Choose life.

Articles tagged “podcast”

Yogis Talk : David Wells about Thai Yoga (Reusi Dat Ton)

Thai Yoga aka Reusi Dat Ton Painting

Funny how you start stumbling down paths when you start studying yoga.

I stumbled upon David Wells’ information about Thai yoga aka Reusi Dat Ton and was curious about this other branch of yoga I had never heard about. Since one of my earliest Yogis Talk interviews with a yogi who had meditated in Thailand, I was curious to learn more about movement and meditation traditions there.

To find out:

  • how Thai yoga is different from Indian hatha yoga
  • what to do, according to Thai yoga, if you get a leg cramp (Edited on August 8, 2012 : oops! that should have been foot cramp) or have shoulder problems
  • how to mix different yoga styles to your benefit
  • how David persuaded a living reusi (rishi) to teach him traditional Thai Yoga

Listen to my interview with David below or download it from Soundcloud by clicking here.

David Wells of Wells Yoga

Want to learn more about Thai yoga?

Get in touch with David through his website Wells Yoga or take one of his yoga classes in California.


All photos from David Wells

Yogis Talk Radio Show : Erinbell Fanore

Yoga DVD

Like many other entrepreneurs, we yoga teachers get together to share business and life stories. When I met Erinbell Fanore, a fellow yoga teacher in Berlin teaching hatha and yin yoga, at one of these casual get-togethers, I was most impressed that she made her own yoga DVD on the sunny island of Malta. She talked about it like it was easy to pull off, so I had to ask how how she did it with such ease as one of my Yogis of the Month.

Even if you don’t want to make your own yoga DVD, listening to how simple and easy it is to tackle a big project once you break down into steps and ask for help is helpful for any project. You would imagine that producing a DVD would take months to do, right? But knowing that Erinbell produced hers in just two weeks completely changed my mindset of what’s possible. And expanding possibilities is always a good thing.

Listen to my interview* above with Erinbell (or download it!) to find out about:

  • her introduction to yoga through…Cindy Crawford in the desert?!
  • retraining your muscles through two somatics exercises she shares
  • where to find out more about somatics (ok, here’s a link for you : Somatics: Reawakening The Mind’s Control Of Movement, Flexibility, And Health)
  • how she produced her DVD on Malta
  • how she makes yoga videos more than just instructional but also cinematic (see one below!)

 

 

If you want to produce your own yoga DVD in two weeks, here are your ACTION STEPS:

  1. Figure out your lesson plan and write it down into a script.
  2. Record the script with a live model.
  3. Find a wonderful location like Malta.
  4. Play the recording of the script and follow it.
  5. Edit the visuals to match the script voiceover.
  6. Put it on a DVD.
  7. Extras : get a cover designed.
  8. Now sell it at your classes, workshops, and online

Interested in finding out more about Erinbell? You can order her yoga DVD and watch her free street yoga videos on her website.

* My sound quality is improving now that I’ve bought the Zoom H2 to use as a microphone, but I’m still learning how to work with it.

 

 

 

 

Photo & Video above from Erinbell Fanore

Yogis Talk Radio Show : Alessandro Aliosha Pedori at Wat Suan Mokkh

Hot Spring at International Dhamma Hermitage of Wat Suan Mokkh

 

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to meditate for ten days on a silent meditation retreat? I definitely have.

During my yoga teacher training in India, we were not supposed to speak during meals. The idea was that we were supposed to be fully conscious of our food rather than getting distracted by socializing. Some people took it further and did not speak for an entire day, wearing a little sign around their neck that they were observing silence aka mouna. Some people say observe silence so that you save your energy to turn inwards rather than focusing outwards in idle talking. Once you quiet speech, the mind quiets down too. Others say that there is no need for communication if you realize the great truth that there is no other–‘they’ are no other than me. Whatever the reason, observing silence is a powerful practice especially in conjunction with meditation.

Alessandro Aliosha Pedori

I decided to connect with Alessandro Aliosha Pedori, teacher of contact improv and yoga in Berlin, who meditated in Thailand for ten days at the Buddhist International Dhamma Hermitage of Wat Suan Mokkh. Even though their website is quite comprehensive, even giving out a detailed 11-page description of their yoga classes, I wanted to know what it was really like to experience and live there for a silent meditation retreat.

Listen to my interview* above (or download it!) with Alessandro to find out:

  • The most painful part of sitting meditation
  • Why Wat Suan Mokkh is way better than Vipassana meditation centers
  • What he would have done differently at Wat Suan Mokkh knowing what he does now (hint : bring a pillow!)
  • Who would be your fellow meditators and the leaders / facilitators?
  • Was the food good?
  • The lasting effects of meditating for ten days in Thailand

 

If you want to meditate for 10 days at Wat Suan Mokkh, here are your ACTION STEPS:

  1. Pack a yoga mat, a pillow, tiger balm, and some paracetamol. No pretty clothes allowed, so leave them at home.
  2. Get yourself to Thailand by plane, train, automobile, boat, foot in outside the months of January and February.
  3. Make it to the Buddhist hermitage by 3pm on the last day of the month to register for the next ten days.
  4. Meditate, practice yoga, soak in the hot spring, and eat delicious Thai food for ten days.
  5. Celebrate with a Thai iced tea upon your ‘graduation’ from meditation.
  6. Stay at the main monastery in the woods for a few days.
  7. Escape to a tropical island in Thailand.

Interested in finding out more about Alessandro? His soon-to-be-launched website is aliosha.info.

* I apologize for the poor sound quality. My skype-to-skype interviews sound fine, but my skype-to-phone interviews get a lot of static and interference. My new microphone is in the mail; stay tuned to hear the difference with a Zoom microphone.

 

Have you attended a silent meditation retreat or ever wanted to?

Share your experiences–critical and cynical or blissed out–in the comments below please.

 

 

 

Photos (from top to bottom): Hot springs at Wat Suan Mokkh and Alessandro Aliosha Pedori

Yogis Talk Radio Show : Penelope Trunk of Brazen Careerist

Penelope Trunk of Brazen Careerist

I was really anxious when I interviewed Penelope Trunk. Not only is she internet famous, I had no idea what the conversation was going to be like. Actually, I had thought that talking to her would make me squirm uncomfortably.

Penelope Trunk is a big name in career advising. She’s got a start-up funded doing exactly that. So it’s no surprise that even though I called her to talk about her humane goat cheese project, we ended up talking about my career as a yoga teacher around 8 minutes in.

She told me right away that people don’t want to read about yoga. And it’s a waste of time to blog as a marketing tool, because only people in a three-mile will come to my yoga class. So she tells me I should quit blogging.

No one wants to read about my yoga successes, because it’s boring. She told me to force myself to fail and then to blog about that. Or else blog about how yoga can help you get a boyfriend, or how yoga can save your marriage, or how to make more money by doing yoga daily.

Instead of reading about yoga, people want an interesting experience. She, for one, started doing Ashtanga yoga because movie stars went to the Ashtanga studio. Any movie stars out there who want to come to my class? I teach yoga to the movie star equivalents of the Berlin start-up world. Does anyone get a thrill from doing yoga right next to successful start-up founders?

Listen to my interview above (or download it!) with Penelope to find out:

  • Why Penelope thinks I should go work at McDonald’s
  • How yoga is like sex in terms of career
  • Why Yoga Journal is a Ponzi scheme
  • Why yoga teachers should not get paid—and why yoga should be free
  • Is it yoga if you’re pissed off while you’re doing it?
  • The difference between struggle and failure

Here’s what I wanted to tell Penelope on the phone but couldn’t: Penelope will grow in yoga by accepting the reality of her yoga practice. Her struggle with her current practice is her path of growth in yoga. It’s inner, not outer physical, work. Yoga is not just about putting your feet behind your head or holding headstand for 3 minutes. Yoga is also about how much you try and how much you fail and–the most important part—how you treat yourself after your failure. If you berate yourself and push your body towards injury during yoga practice, that’s not yoga. The yoga is in the compassion.

Be grateful for your limits. If we didn’t have physical limits, we’d have no opportunity to listen to our body telling us where our boundaries are for today. Maybe that’s a better way to describe yoga: playing with your physical and mental limits to keep expanding them.

Around minute 12 Penelope asked me how I got the courage to email her. I sent her an email without expecting any response whatsoever. The importance for me was in thanking her, not in getting any kind of acknowledgment. That’s how I do yoga too—I’m not doing it for weight loss or stress management. I do yoga for the sake of doing it—to connect my body, breath and mind. Does anyone want to buy that? The more I write about yoga, the more I think it’s unmarketable.

ACTION STEPS TO BEING COURAGEOUS:

  1. Do yoga to feel strong inside.
  2. Take a risk like sending an email to someone you admire.
  3. Forget about that email.
  4. Repeat every day for an entire year.
  5. Let me know what happens as a result.

 

 

Photo from Penelope Trunk

Yogis Talk Radio Show : Emma Silverman of Joy of Yoga

Emma Silverman of The Joy of Yoga Book Project

 

At The Joy of Yoga Emma Silverman blogs about yoga, meditation, being a yoga teacher, and–what makes her blog unique–yoga sequences. Of these, she will be publishing 108 in a book.

If you’re an intermediate or advanced yogi, try following one of the sequences at home for a DIY yoga class–like this one to get yoga arms (like tennis arms, but long and lean rather than bulky). They are helpful tools if you are developing a home yoga practice.

If you’re a yoga teacher, let the many, many sequences on Emma’s website inspire you as you plan for your classes–like this one for runners to prevent knee injuries or this fun break-dancing-esque yoga sequence or an eminently practical yoga for digestion one.

What I find most inspiring about Emma’s yoga sequence project is that it’s community-supported : yogis all around the world contribute sequences, so there’s a huge variety of intensity, focus, and effect.

So, get to know Emma and her book project The Joy of Yoga by listening to our interview below. You’ll learn

    • what karma yoga is
    • the process behind publishing a book
    • Emma’s biggest challenges and how she’s moving beyond them

 

 

Find out more about Emma and her yoga sequence book on her blog The Joy of Yoga. If you would like to contribute a yoga sequence to Emma, her submission guidelines are here.