Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

wow, it has been a while…

In Uncategorized on October 24, 2017 at 5:13 am

I have missed writing here. I have missed introspection in public. I have missed taking notes after every yoga class I teach or take to just share it here afterword.

I am not sure who still follows me and who has given up on me a while ago, but I just moved to Mumbai, India.

Yes, India! And I finally got the jitters to start writing about yoga again.


I moved following my partner in his dream. It has been extremely challenging and I am not sure yet how I will survive this big step. But, they all say when you follow your heart, all will be ok, and I am hoping someone is right! Plus, I have a feeling Mamma India will have some surprises in store for me…some I cannot even see yet!

So, I have decided to write here once again, because I have no other way to practice my yoga the way I prefer in the city what better way than practice patience and while waiting. I have had a hard time adjusting to a routine that is both practical and not nerve racking with having to cross town to just bend in poses. I have made a mini yoga/meditation room in my home and I have used it as a creative/practice space, but the distractions are immense and the noise does not always help. Plus, I have an inherent belief that practicing next to other people, and learning more and different moves from teachers and other students is a very big additional self-control practice in itself.

But, aside from the obstacles of having to find the “perfect” yoga space for my inner-peace, I have to disclose that everyday in Mumbai must be a yoga practice day or else you will quickly lose your wit and collapse somewhere nobody will even find you. This city is massive, chaotic, noisy, unforgiving and constantly in movement, but it’s also layered with history, traditions, cultural spaces and so many diverse people. It makes the USA melting pot scenario look ridiculous. It is a city where you can plug in anywhere and everywhere and something will come out of nothing. A city where every single person I see crossing my way walking smiles as big as they can even if they have literally nothing and their homes is on the street corner. I have never seen so much empathy and strength and ruthlessness to live, to survive anyway they can.

Yoga practice in Mumbai feels to me as a daily practice that must be pursue off the mats as well as on. So, I am not fretting the studio or the perfect vinyasa, I am just going with the flow of what life is bringing about and trying to juggle it the best I can with the most grace and compassion for myself first as I am new to this all and it will take time to adjust.



compassion is the only way to self liberation.

In Uncategorized on October 2, 2015 at 2:32 pm

So, I have now resumed teaching regular classes every Friday and Saturday mornings at a rock climbing gym called Brooklyn Boulders here in the Gowanes neighborhood of Brooklyn.

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This routine is giving me both a new mental challenge to come-up with different and exciting classes weekly and also a very good basis or self-reflection before I enter into a space of teaching others.

I have been wanting to address the difficulty I have been having with my own learning of being compassionate as much as I was back in 2011 or 2012 during my 500-hrs Dharma Yoga teacher training, when meditation, veganism and daily practice changed me completely from the inside out as a much nicer and more understanding human being to the less patient and more judgmental one I am today. But, then I though of this: We go through phases in life and we change daily. We adjust to situations and we calm down or get aggravated for any number or reasons that can differ every give moment. How about we just become really ok with this? How about we embrace our craziness and go with it without always question it! Could we a nice change for a bit, not?

The pure self is the one that accept such changes of moods, attitude and behavior and adjusts to the fact that others likewise ourselves are not perfect and this is wonderfully ok. We are not always going to love everything of everyone we live with, are friend with, love or even married. It is about the way we compromise with the understanding that as much as we have limitations, they have them too and, as much as they consider us ok with such flaws, we shall do the same.

So, in the next few months until the Christmas holidays I will basing my teaching on compassion and acceptance and unconditional love of others no matter their flaws and their short coming and their infallible and annoying ways of pushing our buttons with their imperfections, because they are just a mirror of ours, just as annoying, shortcomings, we are just too incredibly selfish and infallibly full of ourselves to believe we are actually perfect ourselves!

the child pose brings back the adult in us every. single. time.

In Uncategorized on September 2, 2015 at 10:50 pm

You know the feeling of your throat closing and your lungs not fully expanding?
Have you ever set at your desk, opened the computer and felt completely and utterly as if your mind was full of ideas a moment before and immediately just dried out all of a sudden? You stare at the screen incredulous and speechless, did not get anything done already yesterday, and the day before and the one before that one.

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You wake-up, make coffee, stumble upon your steps to get to this ridiculously grand desk, sit at it, and nothing comes out of you. But, other days, when you feel much more organized and your schedule is so busy you can barely breath, then those days sitting at this damn desk is easy, is a piece of cake: You sit, you type away, one letter at the time, words just fly off your fingers, your photo editing skills have improved enormously. You got it! You are in tuned with what you want, who you are and where your life is going. Somewhere forward, even though you do not know when and where, but you at least know it is now going at least and it is much better than being stuck.

But for how long can you live this way? How many more night can you deal spending waking-up panicking about money, motivation, direction, active entrepreneurship and not freelancing for free and sitting at a desk to just warm the chair and not bringing anything else back to the table?

What is going to happen if I do not break this mechanism?
What will break this mechanism for you as a freelancers?

For me the answer is always child pose. May seems like too easy of a fix, but it is all true and it has been this way for the past 11 years, never failed me once. Since my very first panic attack back in 2005, child pose has been my departure and arrival pose, my end and my beginning. I loth to do it every time, because the feeling of laying on the floor, head down on the mat, legs apart and hands forward, makes me very vulnerable and very open, but also very honest and very aware of what is it that is going on with me. I curl in it. I cry in it. I rejoice in it. every. single. time.

I know if I sit in that quiet space, dim light, with my forehead on the floor, my breathing will start again, my brain will get oxygenated and my thoughts will run slower. And then when I come out of the pose, magically, I know what to do, I know where to go and how to move in one direction or another.

Try it and you will see. Now, also try focusing on the smell and sound of the ocean while in the pose.

back on my feet and loving teaching yoga once again

In Uncategorized on April 23, 2014 at 9:28 pm


There has been a lot of change happening in my life in the past year. A lot good and bad change. Death in the family, parents separation, family trouble, but also a photo book and a SOLO photo exhibit that are reaching out to the world and bringing my work around for people to enjoy. Yet, if I look deeply in the corners of it all, I must say the good definitely outdid the bad. So in the end such change came to ameliorate me and I am thankful for it even if this meant I had left some of my yoga teaching and practice behind. I did not feel as grounded or as motivated to search for the answered that I was fearing while practicing. I was blocked and scared to look inward for fear of suffering even more. So I was not able to open for my students at the best of my abilities. I am so sorry for this, but sometimes as teachers we are vessels and the vessels can get stuck on a path that does not bring them anywhere. Such was mine for a few months. I was not as compelled to go inward, I wasn’t up to hurting to later heal. I wanted the dull and plain feeling of nothingness. The bliss of ignorance. It was empty and it was comfortable. But it was not, it is not sustainable for the heavy souls and the heavy minds.

So, the day has come for me to go back amongst all my fears and my insecurities and dig them out until I have dealt we them once again.
My life and my teachings as a yogi must include a constant path toward self-awareness and self-discovery. When this starts to fade, then we die inside and we can no longer teach. I thought this is what had happened to me, but thankfully, I am back here to serve. I am back here to share my knowledge and my personal experience for the bettering of others and the bettering of myself through this joint path of teacher and students.

Om Shanti Shanti Shanti

some days you let your hair down and do some yoga at sunset by the beach…

In Uncategorized on June 20, 2013 at 11:52 pm

…and you hope to G-d to have some of the best photographers in the world take some photos of you while you strike a pose.
Now, you also hope everything else around you happens just at the right time in the right place. And then you got MAGIC!

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photo courtesy of David Alan Harvey, OBX June 2013

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photo courtesy of Sam Harris, OBX June 2013

it’s workshop time!

In Uncategorized on May 1, 2013 at 1:35 pm

So, it is that time a year again in which all of us could benefit from some “upside-down” energy. Spring has been taking a very long time to get here, but the nice weather and the warmth has finally arrived, now, we must re-align ourselves to be able to take it all in. And this is why I am suggesting a two-hour workshop where I will teach you to invert yourself and be comfortable in it so you can actually enjoy some extra red-blood cells to your brain and a fresh feeling of rebirth afterword! So, come on all and come on charged to have some serious fun and be all jittery and “high” in the end. We will do 5 different types of head-stands and then I will teach you fore-arm balance and full hand-stand!!!



Yoga is a strict discipline of self-respect

In Uncategorized on March 14, 2013 at 2:02 pm

“I do not want yoga widespread popularity to eclipse the depth of what it has to give to the practitioner,” BKS Iyengar in “Light on Life.”
And unfortunately this is exactly what has been happening ever since BKS Iyengar first came to the Western World and introduced yoga to the “type A personalities” around here. Yoga has become a commodity to all people with a bare minimum effort.
Yoga is not a path anymore, it is a destination. The sanctity of the ancient poses and the benefits that they bring about in the student’s body are no longer even of interest to people who are often just going for the hardest modification of an asana just to show off to the newest girl on the mat next to theirs. I have been that person. I have been the athlete who does yoga to improve her running pace. I have been the crazy girl who goes into handstands jumping up in the middle of the room, falls and then bruises her sternum. But then, along the way, I learned better. I learned that yoga is more than just physical exercises to stretch. Yoga is a strict discipline of self-respect.
So practice, practice, practice and everything will come, but do so with respect for your body, mind and spirit. Do not take yoga as your other aerobic class, take it as a chance to use body awareness to figure out why you have been depressed for months. It will surprise you, I promise you. It always does to me. Enjoy and do not overdue it too quickly. Burning the steps will burn you out too soon and you will miss out on the fun of discovering that your limits are much further than you think!




a teacher for all

In Uncategorized on January 15, 2013 at 6:44 pm


I live in New York City. Specifically, I live in Brooklyn, the hub of Yoga Studios, Yoga practices, Yoga vibes, Yoga obsessions and Yoga everything.
I live among the 24-hour-I-wear-only-yoga-pants mothers from Park Slope and around the I-drink-only-organic-green-juice yoga hipsters from Clinton Hill and Williamsburg. Not that there is anything wrong with that, actually everybody is welcomed to yoga one way or another. But, I am very tired of teaching yoga to the elite ONLY when there are so many other people who can’t afford it and yet would benefit immensely with it. This is why I accepted a job teaching yoga to construction workers at the Green Building in the Gowanos, the up-and-coming neighborhood in the middle of Brooklyn.

The students can barely follow my language, let alone the poses, but they try so hard and they care so much, it is such a pleasure to ensure they get the best out of the whole experience. Some of them are completely extraneous to the concept of yoga as a practice of self-knowledge through stretching, yet they trust me and do what I show them with such passion and dedication, they may as well be able to master the sequence in few months.

Yesterday I walked into the class having had a fit with life and feeling down and grumpy all over.
I walked out the class light as a feather and calm as it can be. I had to break down the poses for all of them the best I could so that each one of them could understand them better. The simplicity of it all made it a better experience for me as well since I had to come out of the regular scheme of an advance yoga class and re-learn how to teach the a,b,c of the yoga I had learned once a long time ago.

Simple minds, simple pleasures.

teaching AcroYoga in Paris

In Uncategorized on December 7, 2012 at 3:26 am


Io sono nessuno! Chi sei?
Sei nessuno anche tu?
Allora siamo in due…non fiatare!
Ci metterebbero al bando, sai bene.
Che cosa orrenda essere qualcuno!
Che cosa triviale, come una rana
Dire il proprio nome tutto il giorno
A un pantano perduto in ammirazione!   –Emily Dickinson





A mat with a passport

In Uncategorized on October 8, 2012 at 7:45 pm

I walked through the door of this 1960’s building in the residential neighborhood of Rahavya and I found myself in a kindergarten while looking for a yoga studio. Yet, the facebook tread was clear: “Come join our Power Flow yoga classes in Jerusalem!”
I had almost turned around on my feet, when I spotted a woman holding a yoga mat. I smiled. She smiled back. Finally I knew I was in the right place. The class was challenging, the teacher full of energy and at least eight months pregnant, but still holding handstand and demoing anything we needed to see.
I was impressed especially when, by the end of class, I introduced myself and Chaya Bracha said to me she was indeed over nine months pregnant and ready “to pop” any moment.
Little did I know, she delivered her first baby girl in her home two days after I met her. It was 10pm after the end of Shabbat *(in Israel most people are religious and do not use cell phone or any form of technology during the holy day of Shabbat) when I got a call from her asking me if I could take over all of her classed for at least a couple of months. She said “she trusted me since I was also a Core Power Yoga trainee from Boulder.”
I was ecstatic she asked me since we had only met once before. But, of course, I said yes even though my plan to be in Israel was a bit different. Aside from being a 500-hours-certified Yoga teacher, I am in fact a freelance photojournalist and I had gone to Jerusalem for a photography book project I had been working on since 2010 back in Brooklyn.
But, in the end teaching yoga has always been a way to balance my personal and professional life and the challenge of having to do this in a foreign country, especially with religious women, was an experience I was not going to pass on.
Within three months, I had a nice following of young to middle age ladies, mostly religious Jews who were either students or freelancers themselves. I was teaching a mix of Power Vinyasa and Dharma Mittra Yoga with some one-pointed meditation and pranayama
Yet, the biggest challenge for me having been a strong follower of Sri Dharma Mittra and his more meditative yoga style, was trying to share my experience with my students. Although our religious views were the same, since I am Jewish myself these more religious women were not open to OM-ing or concentrating to the “inner self,“ because they felt they were committing idolatry this way.
Anyhow, it had been the best teaching experience of my career yet. Not only did I witness a strong growth in the demand of my students, but I also saw them getting better and more motivated that ever to work on their body and mind in a city that is nothing, but spiritual and where the availability of such classes has always been scarce, despite the request.
I liked teaching Israeli women so much that, by the last three week of my stay, I ended up having to host private yoga classes in my rental apartment, where my 10 by 12 bedroom did the trick.
If you would have told me when I was planning my trip to the Holy Land six months before that I was going to receive emails and facebook messages from religious Jewish women I had never met, but heard of me in Jerusalem because they wanted to take private yoga classes with me, the Italian photojournalist touring the country, I would have laughed. But yet again, now, I can’t wait to go back!~