Sun & Moon Yoga Studio is a place for people to experience and study hatha yoga. We believe in a holistic approach to the study of yoga, giving our students a well-rounded yoga education, bringing in teachers with an eclectic background of yoga. We believe in combining alignment techniques of the body with breath techniques for calming and balancing the mind and the belief and faith that our work feeds us and is fed by the (spirit) Divine Universal Energy present in us all and in all things.

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Meet Sally Swan

How did you first discover yoga?

I began Transcendental Meditation when I was in high school. A friend taught me Sun Salutes at the Rainbow Gathering in Wyoming in 1973. I forgot the series after a few weeks. I attended a YMCA Introduction to Yoga that had about 200 people in the class. We did mostly seated hip/opening poses. It was an agonizing experience for me. I have very tight hips and I thought, well, this is just not my path. Then 20 years later, Sun & Moon opened in Arlington and my daughter started taking classes. She invited me to attend her class with her one day. Ah! This is how to relax! I haven't stopped practicing since.

Explain how your personal experience as a parent helps you teach prenatal yoga.

Teaching prenatal yoga is like parenting in the sense that I find myself in a role of assisting another person in a growth and transition process they are involved in. As in all my classes, I try to help the women develop an awareness of their body, mind and spirit and in the case of prenatal, to learn to use that awareness to cultivate a positive pregnancy and childbirth experience.

What is your teaching philosophy and inspiration?

This is a simplistic way of expressing a complex topic, but simplicity is the point I think. In Kindergarten, we slept on mats. There was a time each day, we took out our mats and laid down to rest. I connected with this memory in my first few classes at Sun & Moon. My mother had a poster of Robert Fulgham's "All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten". Excerpts are at the end.

In my classes I enjoy sharing what I've learned with others and my first offering to the class is rest. A chance to let go of all their responsibilities and concerns and come into a sense of presence with themselves. And from there we learn to extend ourselves, deepen our surrender, find and challenge the boundaries of our strength and flexibility, all the while maintaining an awareness of our breath, which is our guideline for the present moment. And then, we rest again. And hopefully we take with us from class a more grounded, centered and 'present' state of being into our daily lives.

Today, what is your favorite yoga pose and why?

Urdhva Danurasana (wheel pose). It brings me to the boundaries of my capacity to be open and my ability to provide a strong and stable support for that opening. Taking the next step as I am ready for it, and examining that next step to figure out why, when I find myself not ready. One day it is the strength boundary that is most challenged, another day it might be the flexibility, the surrender. It helps me process my daily life, to act out this metaphor in the pose. It brings me happiness, as usually when I am unhappy it is because I am resisting, closing to something that life is offering me to experience. It helps me to reopen and try again.

Robert Fulgham's "All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten"

All I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be, I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate- school mountain, but there in the sandpile at Sunday School. These are the things I learned:

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Last modified: Tuesday, 10-Jan-2006 00:58:05 EST