Sharing with a purpose. / by Julie Anne Caramanico

I created this website because I want to make yoga more approachable to anyone who's interested in starting yoga and/or living a healthier lifestyle, but just haven't quite been able to get there.  I experienced my own resistance to starting a yoga practice, and I believe in breaking down barriers and incorrect perceptions of yoga to get more people on the mat.  If you’ve ever thought about trying yoga or a healthy lifestyle but have experienced resistance in some way, you’re in the right place!

When I took my first yoga class, I absolutely loved it.  I was low on funds as a graduate student, however, and I thought I didn’t have enough money to start the consistent yoga practice that I desired.  In addition to financial barriers, I had some hang ups about doing yoga.  I thought I wasn’t strong or flexible enough, and that yoga was a little “weird”.  In short, I was thoroughly intimidated, worrying about what other people thought, and making excuses for myself.  I continued to practice when I could at the gym, but never made a real commitment to getting healthy.  Years later, I was ready to make the commitment.  I decided to do the Broad Street Run, but since I'd previously gotten stress fractures from running, I decided to do yoga as cross training to prevent injury.  I volunteered at Dhyana Yoga a few hours a week in exchange for classes.  I was thoroughly intimidated by the classes I was taking, the accomplished yogis in the room and by my own lack of skill.  Despite my fears and insecurities, I kept showing up.  After fumbling around on the mat for a few months, I started to become more coordinated in the flow.  I noticed that my body started to change. I was less anxious in my everyday life.  Less anxiety even helped me get better at my job!  I was hooked.  Oh, and I finished the race injury free.  

Not long after, I decided to do a teacher training.  I was laying in savasana (the final resting pose in yoga) after a particularly difficult class, and the idea just came to me.  I knew I had to do it.  My original plan (which still stands) was to do yoga with children, but along the way I realized I also love sharing yoga with adults as well.  It has become my mission to teach yoga in an accessible, approachable way.  Strength and flexibility is not a requirement, but it certainly develops with practice.  I never did well in any kind of sport and physical activity was always a struggle for me.  It sounds cliché but it’s the truth, if I could learn how to do yoga, literally ANYONE can.  And you don't have to take it so seriously.  I love working hard in my practice but also enjoy being able to laugh and smile in my classes both as a student and teacher.  I have a lot of fun with it and never take myself too seriously.  All of that being said,  I am constantly learning about and through yoga as both a teacher and practitioner.  I consider myself a student of life and yoga, and I look forward to sharing everything I learn!