Kripalu Yoga

I started yoga in 2004 after a suggestion from one of my doctors. While at MU, I went to alleyCat Yoga on Monday and Friday each week and also practiced at my apartment. I only missed one class period when I was deathly sick.

The yoga that I practice focuses on breathing, stretching, and feeling the sensation that ensues. In my private practice I frequently use props such as sandbags, straps, and bolsters. While standing postures are good for many arrangements, when I have a choice (such as private practice) I tend to choose seated or floor postures that allow for intense stretching that you lie in for extended periods of time. Since graduating from MU (and after receiving Journey of Awakening: A Meditator's Guidebook from Ken at alleyCat Yoga), I have taken up silent, seated meditation.

I find that most yoga classes (outside of the alleyCat Yoga ones) are not very beneficial. Most yoga classes that I have attended after moving to Stanford are more like power yoga and aerobics classes. These classes completely miss what I love about yoga because, for example, there is no way that you can stretch a muscle while actively using the muscle to hold a standing posture. I am also not enthused about sun salutations.

If you are interested in a yoga-oriented vacation/retreat, I suggest visiting Global Yoga Journeys. Global Yoga Journeys is run by Ken and Kathleen, the wonderful founders of alleyCat Yoga. Aside from running alleyCat Yoga and teaching weekly classes in Columbia, MO, Ken and Kathleen publish Columbia's Healthy Living Directory, are faculty on the Advanced Yoga Teacher Training team at the Kripalu Center in Massachusetts, and are creators of the Sadhana yoga and meditation CD series. Ken and Kathleen are wonderful people and I guarantee that you will love their trips.