Have you ever experienced a great yoga class that answered all that your body’s physical and emotional needs but there was something deeper to it and you just wanted to learn more? Where the teacher was using words like chakras, bandha’s, Ayurveda, and mantra’s… but left you questioning more than experiencing? Or do you already know some of these Sanskrit words and have been wanting to learn more – especially in a yoga class rather than from Google? Then this workshop this weekend may just be the one for you.
ERYT-500 Hr, Jeanne Heileman’s yoga classes focuses on both the physical journey and the inner workings of our mind, body, and spirit. She met yoga when she was a dancer and actress in her 20’s studying in the American Conservatory for Theatre in San Francisco where one of her subjects was yoga. Patabhi Joi’s Ashtanga method and the other flow styles of asana practice worked so well for her body as a dancer. But she knew there was more to yoga than just unlocking the next pose. She yearned to learn more about yoga philosophy that when she met Rod Stryker and his knowledge and mastery on the subject, she chose him to be her teacher in 1999.
“Personally, I hold the perspective of focusing on the question, ‘Who is your teacher?’ instead of ‘What style of yoga do you teach?’ The latter is more current and commercialized. The former question is the perspective from the ancient practitioners and scriptures. I am a senior student of Rod Stryker and grand-student of Pandit Rajmani Tigunait, from the lineage of Swami Rama and the Himalayan Masters. I might just weave in more fun asana than some of my fellow ParaYogis may, but the intention is the same. My goal is to help people remember who they really are.”
But if you’re not familiar with these teachers or their lineage, the style would have to be described. “Tantra” is a Sanskrit word made of two words ‘Tanoti’ which means to extend, expand, or stretch and ‘Trayati’ to free or liberate. So whatever you’ve thought of to be Tantra, it is most probably true as it encompasses everything. Through the techniques of Tantra, one experiences both the outward journey of the body and the inner landscape of the mind, emotions, and spirit. Techniques such as pranayama (breath and energy expansion) and mantra (mind vibrations or chants) are interwoven while doing asana (postures), rather than as tools before or after class. These additional techniques help the practitioner feel and be in their body and allow them to go inwards, rather than outwardly looking and comparing one’s self to another.
“The wonderful thing that I learned from Tantra is that you CAN have both [inner and outward journeys], you don’t have to give something up. Life is to be lived to its fullest. So, I kept practicing and just wove my attention inward. Instead of listening to a playlist or thinking about my worries, I moved my breath to a specific region of the body or chanted mantra throughout the practice. The practice became so much deeper, touching and expanding my heart. When people kept bugging me for a name to the style, I chose the two words [Tantra and Flow] that made the most sense. We will flow in strong asana and we will also work on the inner bodies, connecting everything to be whole.”
When asked about teaching this to beginners, Jeanne said “If we can’t break something down to its simplest terms, then we don’t fully understand the topic and need to keep practicing. There is no froufrou-ness with my teaching. There is meaningfulness and a lot of unexpected humor.”
So if you’re ready to go inwards and learn the subtle landscape of your inner mind and spirit, then come and experience Jeanne Heileman’s Tantra Flow Yoga workshop this weekend at Urban Ashram Menarco, BGC. It will definitely be a deep and enriching yoga experience for your body-mind-and-soul, while having loads of fun.
This Tantra Flow Yoga Workshop is also a registered course under Yoga Alliance Continuing Education Provider (YACEP)®. Full attendance to this workshop will add 14 hours of continuing education credits under Yoga Alliance. Workshops will be from 8-12nn and 1-4pm on Saturday, June 30 and Sunday, July 1 at Urban Ashram Menarco (9F, Menarco Tower, BGC). Visit www.urbanashramyoga.com/members/jeanne-heileman for more workshop details and rates.
Lexi Payumo is a vinyasa yoga teacher, mama to lovely little pups and our resident health foodie. She recently came back home to Manila from Switzerland were she studied more about sustainable development. She recently completed her Kundalini Teacher Training.