What has the pandemic brought to light for you personally?
- Debby Green: I’ve realized the strength of our community.
- Santiago Hernandez: I think what the pandemic brought to light for me was how my perception of a situation can change, given the circumstances. I thought I had no time to spare, then I had nothing but time. I thought I couldn’t manage without certain things, but I could. I thought my life was going in a certain direction and it went the opposite. I’m sure this is not an original statement – adaptability is the trademark lesson of this pandemic. We’ve all had to deal with it in our own personal way.
- Tori Milner: It has made it clear to me how deeply connected and interconnected we, and all beings actually are, whether we realize it or not.
- Tzahi Moskovitz: The pandemic made me question and explore what in teaching is essential and urgent, and what is superfluous and unnecessary. So I found myself emphasizing the aspects of Yoga that entice joy, spaciousness, and connection, in moments that felt scary, confined and lonely.
What pose/poses are you currently exploring?
- Debby Green: As usual, working on all poses.
- Santiago Hernandez: I’m exploring poses that help me recover my voice (I almost lost it teaching recently), focusing on my neck and throat. Simhasana, twists like Bharadvajasana, turning the neck in different directions. A Salabhasana like backbend, with the chin on a brick and the hands up on a chair, to move the dorsal spine in and open the throat. Sarvangasana cycle and Bhramari (pranayama).
- Tori Milner: Savasana – always! And these days trying to get back Padmasana after Zoom teaching has tightened up both my knees and hips!
- Tzahi Moskovitz: I try and do my best to explore the subject of Yoga rather than to explore poses.
What is your favorite quote from the Iyengars?
- Debby Green: “You must practice with unflagging enthusiasm!” – B.K.S. Iyengar
- Santiago Hernandez: “Change is not something that we should fear. Rather, it is something that we should welcome. For without change, nothing in this world would ever grow or blossom, and no one in this world would ever move forward to become the person they’re meant to be.” – B.K.S. Iyengar
- Tori Milner: It is difficult to distill the incredible bounty of intelligent teaching by the Iyengars into one quote, but I remember being in Pune in class with Geeta. And during Savasana, she said to “go to the place within where you are no one and you are nothing and surrender there.” It was such a peaceful, calm feeling that came over me. I will never forget it.
- Tzahi Moskovitz: My favorite teaching moment came from Mary Dunn, she was watching a student in Adho Mukha Svanasana, and the student could feel her watching and immediately tried to “correct “ in an abrupt and hurried way… Mary said “I know you are trying your best, know that you have time” and you could feel the student and the entire room exhale, and look at the subject again in a deeper, kinder, and more patient way.
What words of encouragement do you have for new students?
- Debby Green: Jump in and keep going.
- Tori Milner: Have fun and keep an open mind. Be patient and recognize that even small increments of progress will take you far along the path. Allow your enthusiasm to grow and buoy you up to explore poses and places within that you never knew were possible.
- Tzahi Moskovitz: “I know you are trying your best, know that you have time”
What is your favorite: ice cream, work of art, place in the world, book or movie?
- Debby Green: Vanilla, forever and always.
- Santiago Hernandez: My favorite place in the world right now is Sitges, a beach town southwest of Barcelona.
- Tori Milner: Favorite Work of Art: The Human Body
- Tzahi Moskovitz: Monet’s Water Lillies at Muse’e de l’Orangerie, talk about Padmasanas!