This summer I am taking a four-month break from teaching, and I’ll be getting on a train and going out to the west coast of Canada. I’m intending to spend some time on the beautiful island of Haida Gwaii, and also visit some friends in Alberta, B.C. and Oregon.
I am excited to take a break from teaching, as there are many things that I am currently learning and churning about human movement, and I want to give myself some time to digest and practice outside of the space of teaching.
Yoga has been my main movement practice for many years, and recently I have been re-connecting with Contact Improvisation (a form of modern dance that I’ve been practicing on and off for about 10 years) and studying a completely new-to-me movement paradigm called The Axis Syllabus. If you’ve been in my class recently you might have heard me reference the Axis Syllabus as I’ve been inviting students to oscillate/bounce in their poses, stand up from chairs in a spiralling motion, or try different movement explorations that sometimes look like sliding around on the wooden floor. I am really excited about what I have been learning in my study of The Axis Syllabus – it is deeply affecting the way that I move, and think about movement, and I am excited about its application to yoga.
This summer during my 4-month break, I’ll be attending a 5-day Axis Syllabus intensive, and a 12-day Contact Improvisation intensive in British Columbia. I’m really looking forward to diving more deeply into these movement practices, and bringing them back into my teaching when I return to QSY in November. I hope to incorporate some of the theory and principles into my yoga classes. I also hope to create and offer a movement/dance course that will take us off our yoga mats and get us moving through space across the floor, sometimes in solo exploration and sometimes exploring contact/momentum/gravity with other people.
I’m so grateful to Leena and Andy for helping me strategize and be able to take this time off. While I’m gone, we are excited to announce that we are bringing Monica on to the managerial team of Queen Street Yoga. Monica completed our teacher training program in 2014, and has been teaching regularly at the studio for the past year. She has been front desk staff on Friday mornings, and she also assisted our 2015/2016 teacher training program, helping mentor new teachers. While I’m gone, Monica will also be taking over my drop-in classes, teaching Monday 5:30pm Slow Flow, Thursday 6pm Basics and 7:45pm Rest & Renew. Monica’s background as a Registered Massage Therapist contributes to her thoughtful, adaptive and knowledgeable teaching style.
See you in November!
Emma Dines is the creative director of Queen Street Yoga. She loves writing, visiting thrift stores and going for walks in the woods. She also loves cartwheeling, sewing and making her own kimchi.