Our Sunday morning teacher Kathryn Clarke takes the Mixed (Level 1/2) Class. In this post Kathryn answers some questions about her association with Iyengar yoga and the school:
When and why did you start practising yoga?
I started to practise Iyengar Yoga in my early twenties and have always practised Iyengar Yoga. I find the focus on posture and alignment accommodates my flexibility and mobility and gives me space to improve on those attributes.
How long after did you get interested in teaching, how did you become a teacher, and how much teaching have you done?
Initially, I practised as a student for 10 years before becoming interested in doing Iyengar yoga teacher training. My practise was interrupted during this time to work as an Australian Volunteer in India as a registered nurse. On returning to Australia I began Iyengar Yoga as a student again. I recommenced classes twice to three times a week and developed a keen interest in the dynamics of Iyengar Yoga. In 2010 I completed my Teacher Training with Pixie Lillis at Balmain Yoga Studio. After completing my Level 2 exams I began teaching a regular class at WEA Sydney and filled in for teachers at Balmain Yoga Studio. Thereafter, I also began teaching a regular class at Centennial Yoga Studio.
Do you teach full time?
I teach Iyengar Yoga part time and work full time as a cancer nurse. In addition to teaching at Central Yoga School once a week, I fill in for other teachers at the school and for a fellow teacher at Lilyfield Community Centre. I have cultivated a wide range of experience teaching students of all ages and am able to modify asanas to cater for individuals’ needs.
What else do you do, and have you found your full time job helps your yoga teaching?
As I have previously mentioned I am employed as a registered nurse in a busy outpatientâ€™s clinic. My job requires me to be alert, motivated and mobile.Â Regularly practising Iyengar Yoga gives me a firm sense of focus and calmness that enables me to deliver good patient care. In addition to attending James classes twice a week I do my own practise at home once a week. Practising and reflecting on my own practise gives me insight into my strengths and weaknesses. In doing a regular home practise I am able to explore each asana and improve on my teaching.
How would you describe your teaching and classes?
I would describe my teaching as very Iyengar based as I am a firm believer in the ethics of Iyengar yoga. I advocate the use of props to improve oneâ€™s practice in regards to alignment, as correct asana alignment leads to mindfulness. After years of practising Â Iyengar yoga I have experienced the benefits of utilising props to improve my practice, but also to come back to Iyengar yoga after injury.
What do you like about practising and teaching at the Central Yoga School?
Since attending classes at Central Yoga School my own practice has improved immensely. I enjoy the challenge of Jamesâ€™ classes and the company of the other students. Teaching at Central Yoga School has been and continues to be rewarding. All the students have a keen interest in Iyengar yoga and strive to improve and reflect on their own practice.