Nearly a lifelong practitioner of yoga, April Ness has been training teachers since 2009. Although she’s trained at more than one location, she’s passionate about the methods at Yoga from the Heart. April kindly answered our questions about her experiences. Let’s learn about her yoga journey here.
How long have you been practicing yoga?
I have been practicing yoga for as long as I can remember. My parents were Iyengar teachers when I was younger, and some of my earliest memories are practicing yoga alongside my father in our living room every morning. My practice increased as a young adult.
What originally sparked you interest in teacher training?
I am a teacher of traditional Japanese karate. I have always incorporated a yoga practice at the beginning of my karate classes. My original desire for teacher training was to expand my own knowledge of yoga tradition and history and spark my own practice and knowledge.
I have been dealing with anxiety for much of my adult life. Yoga, as well as karate, has been a truly healing practice for me. I am also prone to attention and focus issues. Breath work has been an integral part of healing for me for both of these struggles. The more I practice, the more I learn, the more I can lead an authentic life. So, for me, teacher training will bring some benefits that are purely selfish!
You recently switched organizations for teacher training. What did you enjoy about your previous training and what concerns did you have?
At the time, I was a new mother and couldn’t travel extensively for teacher training. I found my first training to be beneficial in the fact that I was able to pick my own schedule (which was also financially beneficial). Trainings were every few months and in various cities in Florida, near where I live.
My disappointments originally started with the instructional book that I received before my first training. There were postures shown in the book, demonstrated by the owner of the organization, that were completely off on alignment. Posture cues were based on the organization’s “research” and various professionals, not from rooted yoga tradition. The propaganda for the organization’s logo T-shirts, CD’s and books also became overwhelming. It was pushed before, during, and after the trainings. The organization’s goal to expand their brand was apparent as the main goal to touch and train as many teachers as they could in a short period of time. My biggest concern was with the lack of passion to connect to the core of yoga. The roots of yoga tradition were only lightly touched on.
How did you hear about Yoga from the Heart?
I attended a class with Lynn Burgess about seven years ago, after the recommendation by a friend, and loved it!
What attracted you to the teacher training program at Yoga from the Heart?
The knowledge, experience and passion of Lynn! I am interested in a more intimate training, where knowledge is felt and permeates.
Could you name three things that attracted you to the Yoga from the Heart program?
Depth of the program; knowledge and experience of the instructors; and the opportunity to have a one-on-one mentorship.
Why are you considering joining the teacher training at Yoga from the Heart?
The organization I was with has unfortunately gotten too large, as well as too expensive. People are shelling out a lot of money per weekend training then encouraged to teach yoga to the public without the necessary tools. My best teachers in life, which include my parents, are those who have years behind them in yoga and teach with wisdom. One must gain personal practice before giving the gift to others. From my experience thus far at Yoga from the Heart, the studio and teachers have a basis of wisdom, a passion for the practice and give the joy of yoga to others.