Jay brings an exuberance that is both unique and refreshing with silly sound effects and a good knowledge of the mystical side of Yoga that can be experienced through his Hatha flow classes.
Jay's mission is to enrich the daily lives of students through safely executed asanas, meditation practice and assisting the best he can along their journey towards enlightenment.
Now that all that formal stuff is outta the way this is where I get to share a great deal of things with you.
I feel like we should really get to know each other if we are going to work together, play together or be invited into the intimate parts of each other's lives through something like yoga.
A wise person once told me that when a message is being conveyed to you, always consider the source. Each person has a unique history that has shaped and molded them into who they are today and by taking that into account one can properly understand the ideas, ideals, and morals behind what is being communicated.
Right now, I am working hard at my daily yoga practice in that I am trying to build something sustainable along the way; building for the future while appreciating the current moment.
The classes that I teach to groups of people can be fun, exhilarating, a little bit funny and definitely freeing for everyone involved. Through imagery and asana selection my themed classes will take the yogi on a journey.
Through the private at-home classes that I offer students may learn through a more hands-on approach the proper foundations and alignments of poses along with breathing techniques and only a little bit of hippy dippy bullshit to tie it all together.
Yoga / Union
Well. What can I say about it? It has been a major part of my life ever since I started to feel the pains of Arthritis.
Way back in around 2007 I had asked my grandfather about hereditary illness to watch out for in our family. He told me that arthritis was bad in our family. With some quick internet research I had learned that yoga was the only way to stop it from getting any worse. Back then I never thought twice about it, it was too much like work and I was still a young party dude not ready for routine and responsibility.
In and around 2011 to 2012 I had friends in Halifax, Nova Scotia who were becoming yoga instructors and they had me out to a few of their classes. This was a new chapter of my life where I was going to the gym regularly and was not too interested in what at the time I thought was "just stretching".
Fast forward through time to just a few years ago. It was the longest drought in the history of California and I was living in Los Angeles down in Venice Beach on Sunset Ave, when the rain finally hit.
With having had such a long stretch without any rain the contrast of the environment was incredibly painful. Every part of my body that bends was in pain, a deep inner pain. Bones that had been broken in the past were inflamed and in pain as well. This was it. It was
definitely arthritis time and I knew what had to be done.
The very next morning I set out looking for the perfect yoga instructor... online, and for free. I also found a local studio in the neighborhood that only charged $9/month for a limited membership, I attended a few classes to make sure that what I was learning on youtube was being done in the proper form. However, the yoga videos I found online were not doing it for me. I must have watched over 100 videos from different instructors and I was feeling frustrated with them and the limited classes at the local studio were at weird times of the day that I could not often attend.
So many obstacles!
Then, one lovely day my good friend Victoria put me onto "Yoga with Adriene" and that was it. I had found my yoga master! Adriene's yoga practice was 100% on point with what I needed in a teacher and to this day she continues to deliver on all expectations and back then she was kicking my butt every morning! On the most positive of notes I was no longer feeling the arthritic pains during those very few rainy periods in Los Angeles and I was able to lift more weights at the gym for longer periods without pulling muscles or getting as tired. I found a general increase in my daily energy. But there was still something missing from all of this. I was still "Just stretching".
Fast forward again. The American dream was over and I had to go back home to Canada. I had never been to the west coast before so I decided to visit friends in Edmonton, Alberta. Edmonton was too flat. I visited Calgary. I did not like it there either. I eventually wound up in the majestic mountainous region of the Kootenays visiting friends in Nelson, British Columbia. It was a wonderfully beautiful place to live, the views, the people, everything was just perfect!
The downside to everything is that I was lost. I had no direction or purpose in life and after all this travelling I had maxed out my credit cards and completely ran out of money. Even the overdraft protection was gone! And furthermore, after one month of living there I realised that I strongly disliked mountains and living on the side of one had turned out to be more than I had bargained for. Then to add insult to injury I did not have a "Hippy" enough image to find any sort of decent work in the town. And so, I headed down the mountain, tail between my legs, head slumped down, and
put in an application... at a Walmart. They promptly accepted me.
So here I was a 37 year old washed up-comedian/musician living with a couple of young 20-something's working a shit job in a town where my big-city dapper style wasn't being appreciated all the while surrounded on all sides by nothing but mountains; I felt trapped like a bug in a bowl unable to climb out! I had to do something! But what? I pondered the 'what' for many days. Then it happened... One cold winter morning before work while following along with Adriene on youtube I began to daze off in a dream of thoughts... in this dream I had just taught an amazing yoga class and I was in the studio laying in a savasana, soft low lighting, wooden floors and cedar walls with undertones of incense in the background. I remember it being warm in there and inside this dream I began to think "Ahhh... this is the life... I've got a whole hour to lay here until my next class starts..." And that is when I knew what I wanted to do.
"Find What Feels Good". That is Adriene's slogan that has a special meaning to her. So it was only fitting when after doing much research into yoga schools that I FOUND one called "Feel Good Yoga" not too far from where I was living. It was a sure sign that I was on the right path but I still had to survive a Walmart existence for another 6 months! I spent every day practicing and trying to step up my game as I believed that once I was in school all my classmates would already be these super yoga experts!
The 6 months breezed by and I attended the yoga teacher training at Feel Good Yoga in Langford (Victoria) BC on the beautiful Vancouver Island. Check out my youtube channel to watch the videos outlining my progression during the schooling experience.
Before I went to Los Angeles is a whole other story that I will be sure to write about in the near future.
Be sure to check out my podcast by clicking the link for "Beyond the Mat" up above where you can hear interesting interviews yoga, mediation, health, fitness, wellness, nutrition, self help, helping others, music, plant medicines and a wealth of other topics that all happen... beyond the yoga mat!
Peace, Love n Light Y'all