This month, we sat down to talk with the ever-smiling Joleen Gai!
She brings her happiness and energy to every class she teaches, and it just spreads like wildfire. Get to know her a little better in this week’s Teacher of the Month post!
1) How long have you been practicing and why/how did you start?
I took my first yoga class 12 years ago when I was in college. I thought it would be a good way to get the most of my gym membership and maybe tone up a little. I soon realized there was much more to the practice than staying fit!
2) Tell us about your teaching style?
I like to keep yoga light-hearted and fun. We laugh a lot in my classes! I try to encourage students develop a home yoga practice with what they learn in the studio.
3) What's your favorite thing about practicing and teaching?
My practice keeps me balanced and affords me the opportunity to spread a little bit of light. My favorite thing is at the end of class, when everyone is coming out of shavasana, I encourage students to think of something that they are grateful for and a way that they can be kind to someone. Imagine if only one out of every ten students took that advice and performed an act of kindness! Those small acts add up.
4) What do you look forward to most this summer at the studio?
I can’t wait for yoga on the river Sundays at 10:30. I love practicing outdoors!
5) How are you looking to advance your personal practice this year?
I struggle with the idea of “yoga goals.” Development is encouraging and helps keep people motivated to keep practicing so nailing a difficult asana always feels good.
A year or two ago, I might have enthusiastically said “headstand!” but my personal practice now is more focusing on the eight limbs of yoga and applying it to life off the mat.
I want to study more mythology too and learn the stories behind the poses.
6) Favorite yoga pose and why?
Garbha pindasana in the Ashtanga primary series. I love rocking and rolling! It’s perfect to help find energy and direction mid-practice.
If you haven’t taken one of Joleen’s classes, you can find her in the studio on Wednesdays at 7:00 pm for Level 3 yoga and at 6:00 am on Thursdays for Level 1 yoga.