By Amanda Green
I’ve been practicing yoga for over two decades and I’ve loved it the whole time. But like any good love story, as I’ve changed so has my relationship to this profound practice. I came to yoga in my twenties. I practiced because I wanted to maintain my flexibility and to develop more strength. I delighted in the challenge of complex postures and the relaxation I experienced after each class. In this process, I also began to understand more about my breath, my mind, my emotions and my body and how interconnected they all are. This would lead to moments when everything came together, moving in unison. I had a taste of the presence and alert relaxation that I later came to know as a state of yoga.
I wanted to know more so in my thirties, I trained to become a yoga teacher. I loved teaching group classes and joyfully shared my enthusiasm with others. I watched as students connected to their breath and to something wise and quiet within them. Over time, lives began to change and we began to appreciate, as a group, the quiet attention and connection of yoga.
At this time, my life took an unexpected and painful turn. I was caught up in anger and grief, and I wanted to avoid it all. I desperately needed help understanding this new reality I found myself in. The way I practiced and taught had to shift. It was at this time that yoga therapy found me.
I didn’t know much about the process at the time, but I met with a yoga therapist who was an invaluable guide. He provided me with a personal yoga practice that addressed what I was going through at a level that was physical, emotional, and even spiritual. Postures, breathing, and meditations gave me a way to get out of my head and connect once again to my body, my breath and my heart. The practice was something that I could do everyday and it helped me engage in my own healing, digest what was going on in my life, and feel much needed peace. It wasn’t easy, but with practice I began to experience that focus and interconnectedness more consistently.
This was the first time I practiced at home in a regular way. It soon became the cornerstone of my healing. Over the next few years, my teacher and I continued to meet I saw amazing evidence of the way yoga worked in my life. My relationships improved, my communication was clearer and I wasn’t overwhelmed by my emotions the way I once was. Yoga therapy and the support of my teacher gave me the ability to stay with what was difficult and to see my part in it, eventually coming out with more awareness, compassion and connection to my Self.
As I evolved, so did my personal practice, teaching, and studies. I went on to study yoga therapy in a professional program and after three years of study and training, I now offer the same personal and individualized support for those who are looking for a healing path.
A yoga story is like a love story. The details will be unique to our experience, personality and life, but the ability to be present, to feel centered, and to connect to an inner wisdom is part of the shared journey. Yoga is a practice, a philosophical teaching, and a state of being that can help you dive more fully into your life story. With this next decade of my life underway, I’ve seen how simple, therapeutic practices can help someone turn their life around and set off on a new and meaningful path. I invite you to experience this self-empowering and transformative work for yourself.
Amanda took her first yoga class in 2001 and has been practicing ever since. After moving from Seattle to Austin in 2010, she enrolled in a hatha yoga teacher-training program and soon after completion, she began teaching yoga full-time. Amanda met her teacher and mentor, Chase Bossart in 2011 and her yoga practice took a turn toward a more gentle and therapeutic approach and her yoga study expanded to embrace the broader teachings of yoga. Yogic philosophy and texts, practices including āsana (postures), prāṇāyāma (breathing techniques), meditation, vedic chanting and the practical application of the tools of yoga for therapy are all a part of Amanda’s ongoing practice and study. Amanda has over 15 years of personal yoga practice, 2,000+ teaching hours and more than 1,600 hours of yoga training. She has specialized training in therapeutic yoga and continues her studies with the exceptional faculty and peers of the YATNA yoga therapy training program. Amanda lives in Austin, TX with her two daughters, husband, and extended family. She paints, dances, cooks delicious food and even gets out her sewing machine every once in a while. Amanda offers yoga therapy, small group instruction, workshops and mentoring for yoga teachers and yoga therapists in the Austin area and online.