Peter Wolff, Los Angeles based yoga instructor, is guest blogging for us this month as we explore yoga throughout LA.About a year and a half ago I spent some time in Varanasi, India. I was visiting Babaji’s ashram on the holy day of Shivaratri, sitting at his feet with a few others, and I think he sensed that my future was uncertain once I returned to California the following month. He offered a blessing to me, which led me into contemplation for the rest of the day. Back in my guest house, alone, I felt as if I were in a state of grace, and I asked “What is my work?” Many affirming answers began flowing through me, but the one that kept repeating was “be in my heart”.
Although I discovered Anusara yoga a couple of years before traveling to India, the message is the same. Of all the styles of hatha yoga that have become popular in the US, I find Anusara yoga to be distinctly focused on heart opening. This is no accident. Anusara founder John Friend says, “The poses in Anusara Yoga are considered to be ‘heart-oriented’, and are expressed from the ‘inside out’. There is an emphasis on remembering the spiritual purpose of hatha yoga, which includes reconnecting with our innate goodness, power, beauty, and expressing ourselves from that divine place.”
What I find beautiful about Anusara is that it offers everything we could possibly want from a physically challenging practice, safely building strength and endurance in the body, as well as opening the practitioner to more. After an hour and half class one can come away with more freedom, connection, expression and an appreciation for the diversity of life.
There are several Anusara yoga studios around Los Angeles, including City Yoga in West Hollywood, Still Yoga and Urth Yoga in Silverlake. Many other studios offer Anusara classes, including Mission Street Yoga in South Pasadena and Black Dog Yoga in Sherman Oaks.
Peter teaches on-site hatha yoga classes for businesses, as well as customized private instruction, specializing in therapeutic yoga. To schedule a yoga session for your office contact him at email@example.com, or 323.939.0322. www.yogasounds.net