Teacher Feature ~ Kelsi Zahl

Favorite pose and why?

Natarajasana, Dancers Pose
I love being in this expression. The asana feels all expansive in every direction, it is the perfection of physics.  We ground down to lift up, we press back to move forward. The story behind the posture speaks to my soul: with the light of knowledge, the yogi dancer dances on the head of the serpent, ignorance, the heart of all suffering. With the knowledge of the earth and my own strength, I can keep lifting my heart towards heaven. With the past placed behind me with the light of awareness, I can move, with the heart first, forward; and whilst all of this transpires, I can fill the present moment with beauty.

First introduced to yoga?

My sister-friend Juli took me to a yoga class one day and after that one experience with the dear Alex Austin, I did yoga every day, some days I would do it twice. At first I was addicted to how it made me feel, but then, I realized that it helped my brain. Sri P. K. Jois says that yoga can cure mental illness of all sorts. This has been my experience. Yoga paired with service (seva) has continued to keep me off the slippery slope of addiction and eating disorder for over 12 years, two things which landed me in the hospital in my youth. As long as I show up with the willingness to practice, I am graced with freedom.

And it is this freedom, moksa, that lights my heart of fire. Yoga, in its full form, makes me strong because it allows me to say yes and no in life, instead of being a slave to my own selfish intent and that of the world.

How does your practice make you stronger?

It keeps me in balance. As one who rides the line of too much and too little, it is a true victory for me to ride the middle ground and find some kind of ease.

How do you remain grounded outside the yoga studio?

By practicing asana at home and I have a rather religious morning ritual of 3 pages of stream of consciousness followed by meditation.

Advice to beginner yogi?

Have fun. If you are old to yoga, have fun.

Mantra or intention?

It’s not about getting there, its about being here.

Biggest misconception about being a yoga instructor?

They are avatars.

One healthy food I swear by and why?

Almond Butter. High alkaline, filling and good for the skin. Anti-cancer


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