I have been teaching yoga since 2007, and have been the director of the UVM Campus Rec Yoga Teacher Training program since its founding in 2012. The YTT program, now in its twelfth year, has graduated hundreds of students of all ages. I have taught numerous international retreats in Costa Rica, Canada, the Virgin Islands, and the Dominican Republic. I teach workshops and classes in-person, and have an online yoga studio where I hold workshops, classes, and series for students from around the world.
Quotes from students about my teaching and YTT:
It remains one of the most powerful experiences in my life.
Incredible experience and I have grown and learned so much.
I am a changed person because of this training, and I truly mean that. Thank you for everything.
The best I have ever taken.
I was at a point in my life where I had just experienced tremendous loss, I was unhappy, lonely, and questioning everything. Your immediate kindness and ability to make your students feel valued spoke volumes to me.
Your classes continue to be a Blessing for us all.
I just wanted to thank you for your insightful and, as always, beautiful thoughts about community.
Here is the serpentine path of how I ended up being a yoga teacher.
In 2005 my wife, Jane, came home from her first-ever yoga class and told me it was pretty cool, and I should try it. I vividly remember her showing me tree pose and trying it myself, thinking that maybe this is something “I could be good at.” We started attending Ashtanga classes where I worked hard to do the “full expression” of the postures. I did not move on to the Second Series of Ashtanga but loved the energy and focus of Ashtanga. Jane regularly suggested that I become an Ashtanga teacher, but I had absolutely no interest – I just wanted to practice. At the time, I remember thinking that there must be some kind of philosophy behind yoga. I didn’t know what it was, but I wanted to find out.
With that in mind, we looked around for other types of yoga, and happened upon an Anusara class. From the beginning of the first class, it was a very different type of yoga than I was used to, and it truly resonated with me. Carolyn, the teacher, shared a recent story about herself and then talked about how that relates to yoga and our practice that day. We started with a chant (which we also did in Ashtanga) and then came to standing. Carolyn instructed me to have my feet hip’s distance apart and have a low back curve…I had no idea what my feet or back were doing, or even what a low back curve was, but I was excited to find out. Besides learning about my body and what it was doing, we had fun! We laughed, joked around, and worked together in groups. I discovered I could focus and be present with the movement of the practice, but it could also be fun and light-hearted…I’d found my practice.
Jane and I became enthusiastic Anusara students, taking regular classes with Carolyn and looking for other opportunities to learn more. Carolyn’s teacher, Todd Norian, was teaching a workshop in Vermont, so we went. Something that Todd did is have people demonstrate postures for the group. He picked me to do Full Wheel. I remember lying on the floor and Todd talking to me while I was looking up at all these faces and feeling like I was part of something bigger. It felt really good; I wanted to keep being part of it.
I ended up getting my 200-hour yoga teaching certification with Todd and his wife Ann in Anusara Yoga, and continued studying with Todd and received a 500-hour training in his own yoga style called Ashaya.
Along with Todd, I have studied with many other teachers along including Anodea Judith, Michael Lee, Seane Corn, Robin Golt, Ann Greene, Douglas Brooks, Rolf Gates, Rod Stryker, Aadil Palkhivala, Dr. Madan Bali, Michel Bleier, Faith Hunter, Kia Miller, Barrie Risman, and Ellen Saltonstall, to name a few. The classes I have taken cover a vast variety of yoga styles, including Kundalini, Phoenix Rising, Iyengar, Jivamuki, Bhakti and Kripalu.
The foundations of the yoga philosophy continue to interest me, and I have taken workshops with Edwin Bryant on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, and with William Mahony on the Bhagavad Gita and the Narada Bhakti Sutra. I am a student of Lorin Roche in the Vijnana Bhairava and related meditation practices. I have studied Sanskrit at the University level and have had extensive Sanskrit and Vijnana Bhairava studies with Les Morgan. Continually learning about “what is yoga” inspires me to learn more.