I’m often asked to explain my “style” of yoga because my classes don’t readily fall into a traditional box. From a foundational standpoint, I’m influenced by classic practitioners, particularly B.K.S Iyengar and Pattabhi Jois. Although I’ve never had the pleasure of meeting these yogic icons, I’ve studied them extensively and integrate both their styles. Consequently, my classes blend different classical approaches with a focus on alignment, arm balances and inversions.
While I have a reputation as a demanding teacher, I welcome questions and am able to modify poses to accommodate students of varied abilities. All of my classes are characterized by joy and laughter, and deeply rooted in community—with an admitted twist of militant encouragement, which stems from my Eastern European heritage. I recognize that my style isn’t for everyone! On the other hand, I also love and believe in the power of Yin Yoga—so students are always able to “cool down” in this fashion.
Though I wasn’t conscious of it at the time, my journey to yoga actually began during my childhood in Romania. As part of both a Communist society and the country’s Junior Olympic Gymnastics Team, I was exposed to extraordinary mental and physical challenges at a young age. Although my body developed great strength through gymnastics (and I found surprising solitude being upside down), I often lived in fear. That reality is reflected in my emphasis on the mental aspect of yoga. In class, I focus on strengthening the mind as much as on strengthening the body. In the end, I perceive the true test of anyone’s practice is the change that occurs off the mat. For me, yoga
has increased my awareness of how I live my life, how I communicate with others, and how I treat my partner. For me, sharing these life lessons is as important as demonstrating the rudiments of a handstand.
Outside of my public classes, I also offer private lessons, conduct teacher trainings, and lead retreats with my partner, Sal. I also love spending free time with my puppy, the aptly-named Anjali Patanjali. First and foremost, however, I remain a perpetual student—of both yoga and of life!