Tag Archives: hot yoga

Who I am as a Teacher is…

Hello my loves!! Been gone so long! You know, I think about writing all the time, but when the inspiration doesn’t come, the inspiration doesn’t come. I often have all these lofty ideas for things I want to write about…and if they stay with me for longer than a few minutes, then chances are I am gearing up for something. 

So, here we are, Saturday afternoon, and I am inspired!! 

This morning I was in class, lying in Savasana, and I was reflecting on the teacher and the style of his teaching. All through my teaching, I have noticed how others teach and how effective it was. At times I have been more loving, generous, talky, picky, bitchy, loud, silent, strict, focussed, mean, nice, easy, carefree, specific, conscious, unconscious….the list goes on…in my teaching. I’ve been teaching almost 11 years, so I’ve been every type of teacher. I have tried on as many styles as I can think of on the path to teaching as me. I needed to borrow other people’s style and detail. I had to study how others teach, how students react to those teachers, what people say about them, how their tools worked for me…or not. I had to try it all on in order to see what fit!! I am the most at ease in my teaching now.  The way I teach is the closest to just me, Ida, teaching yoga…not “Ida The Yoga Teacher” teaching class.

Back to class. I was hearing the teacher and listening to how he used his words. I noticed how he paced his class, how he controlled the heat, the air, the doors, etc. It started me thinking…in the evolution of teaching (I am assuming this is in everything we do, but I am only referring to teaching yoga, as that is what I know 😉 ), we start by gathering as much information as we can (mostly in the form of taking other people’s classes), and start to use this information in our own teaching. We try styles of speaking, intonation, pace, timing, body language, etc. (well, I hope everyone does this…especially as a young teacher-figure out who YOU are as a teacher, try it ALL on!), and soon we start to figure out who we are as our own teacher. The goal, I understand now, is to teach from who I am and use tools that I’ve learned along the way to gain more knowledge and just keep growing my teaching with what I learn through the growth of my own practice, as well as what I learn through teaching…haha, and would not forget to mention what I learn through LIFE…forever and always evolving. 

All this made me think “who am I as a teacher?”…”who is he as a teacher?”…”who are we all as teachers?”….!?

I focus mostly on alignment and precision and eliminating the bull$#!t we all create in our own practice. Stand still, breathing normally, begin again. This morning who he was (at least how he was to me) is simple, concise, clean, easy (as in “at ease”, not that the class was not hard).

All the feedback I’ve gotten over the years, classes I’ve taken and all the different “techniques” I’ve tried and used over the years are all stepping stones and tools getting me to where I am now….I teach from who I am. I teach with the intention that everyone who leaves from my class feels INSPIRED to want to come back and try it again tomorrow. My intention is always to feel better…I want my students to always FEEL BETTER after class. Who I am as a teacher is precision. All those things work together because I tried it all on until the pieces came together. This is who I am now, it’s come together at this time like this and it feels complete and joyful. Some days I’m lower energy, and some days I’m higher…but always, who I am as a teacher is precision. My intention for ALL my students is to be INSPIRED to come back tomorrow and to FEEL BETTER. 

Try it…who are you as a teacher? Make your goal to seek out and find as many techniques as you can until you figure out who you are as a teacher. Keep your intention clean and concise and allow yourself to be you, teaching yoga, with all the tools you have learned along the way…and will continue to learn…forever and always evolving. 

That’s all I got this sunny Saturday, yogis!! Felix and I are gonna go head to meet our pack and get some exercise and vitamin D!! Have a wonderful weekend!

Lots of love,

Ida xx


Happy New Year 2014!

Good morning, my loves. Happy New Year!! Gosh I LOVE the New Year! Not because I love to go out and party it up on NYE but because I love a good excuse to start fresh. To close doors that don’t lead us where we are headed, and to open doors and windows and vents and nooks and crannies and unleash whatever is possible for the new year! Love it.

This time of year is special for me as it is also my birthday month, so for me the clean slate of the new year and my birthday always feels so energizing and exciting. 

2013 was the year of Love (and Locust) (if you don’t remember). I set out in 2013 to feel love and experience love around me for the year. I set out to have fun and enjoy myself….I think originally the idea was to “find love” in 2013. You know, meet someone and fall in love. What happened over the year was true love, but not in the way I thought it would appear. I did not end up falling in love in the sense that I originally thought….but I did find love all over the place!! I learned that love is in my experience. Taking the time to appreciate the things around me and to honour myself enough to love everything I do, eat, drink etc., was the perfect ingredient. 

In 2013 I got Felix. There is nothing like the love you share with a pet.

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I travelled AND nested in 2013. I revelled in the comfort of my own home to make as I wish, and I got to travel to more places I had never been before.

I let go of some BIG beliefs about myself and food and my body and started eating EVERYTHING! (Because how will you know if you never try??!) and it turns out that cheese and bread is pretty well my favourite food and I still hate frozen fish sticks. (Below is me in Paris trying escargot…sometimes you try something and it’s awesome, sometimes not.)

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Professionally, I focussed on my teaching in a way I never have before. I started practicing yoga more and more on my own, in my room, in a more “free-style” manor. I started really delving into the mechanics of my own body so as to understand the human body and the yoga practice that I teach on a deeper level. Being in one spot is so awesome because I have gotten to know the students who I teach on a regular basis so much better. Taking the time to study my own practice in a deeper more specific way, partnered with teaching the same yogis in the yoga room every day has given me a comfort level with my teaching that I am so much enjoying! I have been studying the human body (mine in particular but so many hundreds of other bodies over the past decade too!) for TEN years through teaching yoga, and this year I decided to give myself the credit that while I haven’t studied anything scientific in school, experience has been my biggest teacher and I know what I am talking about in the yoga room…AND I’m still learning so much more.

This year also saw the surrection of yoga retreats/vacations! I love love love the ocean and the beach and the sun (and who am I kidding, my bikini!) and it has been a dream for Bestest and I to take yogis to beautiful wonderful gorgeous places on the planet and do yoga for many years…and we finally did it!! (Stay tuned for details on the next one…May 31st-June 6, 2014.)

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So, for 2014, here are a few goals I have put on my radar. I know from my experience that the best things in life take time, so I have added these goals for the year and we’ll see how it goes…

Learn to speak Spanish.

Do a handstand in the middle of the room.

Study reflexology.

I shall keep you posted on my progress….and don’t worry, I have not forgotten about the post on Dhanurasana that I promised…and I’m working on a birthday post for later this month…I have to tell you about how I used to hate my armpits! Sounds like 2014 is going to be a goooooood one!

So, again, Happy New Year, my loves, I can’t imagine a world without you..it would be very lonely.

Here’s to 2014, the year of EVOLUTION and LONGEVITY!!

I love you with all of my heart, 

Love,

Ida x

Anything is possible. Never say never. 

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Around the world and back again

Good morning my Loves!!

I have just returned from my travels to Europe…and let me tell you, I am smitten beyond smitten!! Europeans love LOVE and I LOVED all the people and all the places that I got to meet, see and experience on my trip.

I took a ballet class the other night which I am excited to write about…because of all the things that occurred while in the class!

I cannot tell you all the amazing thins I ATE while I was away!! I am changing my handle, and I feel like I want to write a bit about my food journey the past months…stay tuned.

Yoga abounds in this amazing world, yogis. I had an amazing adventure, and I am SO happy to be back in the world that I am currently creating and living in day to day. My bed never felt so good as it did lastnight.

Till later, my Loves…I have lots to share 😉
Love,
Ida xx

From Paris, with Love

From Paris, with Love


My Yoga Crushes!

Hello lovelies!

Saturday morning. Another beautiful day. Good one 😉

This week I got a new yoga crush. Don’t get me wrong, I love every student I meet…if someone has the gusto to challenge themselves to try this practice, then of course my heart is full for them! But, from time to time, I get a huge crush on a student who steals my admiration. I’m not talking a romantic crush, it has nothing to do with that…this crush is about an inspiration and admiration I feel from something I sense in a person. I try to allow myself to be inspired by everyone I meet (sometimes that can be harder than others, let’s be honest!!), but right now I have a couple yogis who have me yogi-smitten.

My first crush is Gwendolyn* (*of course, for purposes of this blog, names have been changed 😉 ). Gwendolyn is probably in her early 50’s, she’s married and she loves practicing this yoga. Those are really the only details I know about Gwendolyn. When she comes in for yoga she is so unassuming, nice, smiling, polite, kind and always seems genuinely happy to be there. She then works hard in class, takes her relaxation savasana, changes her clothes and is out the door with a wave and a smile. Sounds like most yogis…but there is something about Gwendolyn’s spirit and essence that I sense and it makes me feel happy…and then there’s the secret part of my crush…she absolutely ROCKS her shakti/onzie/kDeer shorts and her GLITTER bandeaus!! Seriously, I can’t help myself, between her shy demeanor and her strong focussed yoga practice she had me…but the shorts and bandeau? Well, sealed the deal. I don’t know what it is about Gwendolyn exactly that makes me feel so elated and happy, but there is something. There is something she posesses that gives me joy. So, I crush on Gwendolyn. Every time I see her. She knows she’s my yoga crush…she said I’m her’s too. ❤

My other yoga crush is Mike*…This week Mike secretly bragged to me about what a bad ass he is and that was the hook…I love a good proud self promoter with equal amounts of humility…seriously, best mix. It shows up in the yoga room as ultimate combination for yoga…a yogi who works hard but also knows his/her limits and at the same time is willing to exceed those limits…because we all know the truth about limits (what limits, we are yogis, we can do ANYTHING!!). Mike is older than Gwendolyn, he's got probably 15-20 years on her. He's been an athlete his whole life and has accomplished some really amazing things…and the amazing-ist part of it is HE IS STILL ACCOMPLISHING AMAZING THINGS…His longevity is AWESOME!!! The best part of Mike is, he's totally bad ass and he knows it…and I’m sure he's been bad ass for at least a decade before I was even born…so I have super duper high end respect for him…Mike inspires me to be Super Bad Ass Yogi Princess for years and years and years to come…. ❤

I know it’s easy to say “oh, we all get inspired by eachother, blah blah blah”, and the truth is, sometimes some people totally annoy us or whatever else…but if we just allow ourselves to be ourselves and others to be themselves, and understand that we all teach eachother and learn from eachother, then we begin to see amazing things in every person. And isn’t seeing amazingness in everyone way better than seeing anything other than that?

I think so…so I remain smitten.

Love you, yogis, you are all amazing…
-Ida xox


Honesty trumps everything. Thoughts on my ten year anniversary!

Hello Kittens!

I am 5 days until the anniversary of teaching my very first yoga class. Bikram says it takes 10 years to become a teacher. On June 7th, it will be ten years since I taught my first class. May 31st was the ten year anniversary of my graduation. Whew. What a ride!!

If you asked me ten years ago today what I would be doing now…well, I’m sure teaching would be in the mix, as I was at teacher training, but I’m not sure I could have even fathomed where my job, my life, my yoga would have taken me, and all the things I would learn in the process.

Do you ever notice that parents always think their kids are the smartest kids? We have the opportunity, as adults, to actually witness small beings learning and experiencing new things pretty well every moment of their lives!! We, as adults, have learned it all, experienced it all, so we take the normal stuff for granted. Ever really allow yourself to experience the sourness of a lemon as though for the first time? How about looking at a flower, or a leaf, as though seeing the delicateness of the petals and the amazing seamlessness of how the colours blend into each other?…You get the picture. As we grow, we learn. Once we get to a certain age, we learn how to take care of ourselves, we have some life experiences, get into a bit of trouble and figure it out, have to make a couple choices, relationships, moving, living alone…etc…after we gain some life experience, we think we pretty well know…everything…right? So, our parents and other people around us continue to try to parent us and give us advice, without it seeming like advice, and take heed and charge forward and continue to gain life experience. Then, as we get this experience, we start to see things about ourselves, patterns, behaviours etc. We start to see how much we thought we knew “back then” and how much we really didn’t know…which means as much as we think we know now, it must mean that we still don’t actually know anything because we are only so little into our lives and development (but at least now we are wise enough to see that we still have so much more to learn and experience! Ha!). One of my favourite ideas that I heard way back in a different part of my life, is this…there are a bunch of things that we know we know (I know how to cook, do yoga, sing, teach, drive, etc etc), and then there are a bunch of things that we know we DON’T know (I don’t know how to fly a plane, play the guitar, tap dance, build a car, etc etc)…and then there is the category of the things you DON’T KNOW YOU DON’T KNOW…IMAGINE IT! There are so many things I don’t know I don’t know, so I don’t even know that I want to know them or am yet to even discover them!! So, you see, the learning and experiencing is endless!!

OK, so here I sit, 5 days from the ten year anniversary from teaching my first class and I have been having floods of emotion and memories. I have never done anything for TEN years in a row! I have been remembering classes taught and classes taken. I have been remembering times of loving what I was doing and times of not loving it. Times of feeling I was in the right place and times of wondering what the hell I was doing. I have had moments and hours of physical strength and physical weakness, emotional strength and emotional weakness. I remember times of true pure happiness and bliss standing on a podium leading students…and I have also felt completely sad, frustrated, fearful, nervous, excited, joyful, scared, inspired…I can quite honestly say, in my now ten years of teaching this yoga, I have experienced every part of who I am in that yoga room, on the podiums of all the many schools and beaches and grassy yards and living rooms and poolsides and dreams that I have had the opportunity to teach a class in.

I have had many people say many things about the way I teach class, and about me because of it. I have had a couple of brutally honest things said to me through this process, but that is for another post. I will say this…the other day a student revealed to me (when talking about me having taught for 10 years), that I open the door more now.

It’s true. I do open the door more. And it’s true all the things people have said to me and about me. It’s true I’m tough. It’s true my class is tough. It’s true you will work hard in my class…if you want to. And it’s true I’m loving and caring and honest. In fact, all I need to say is I’m honest. Right? Honest is all of those things wrapped up together! To honestly teach something to someone from an honest place…isn’t that pretty well all things we could be all wrapped up in one big ball of awesomeness that sometimes hurts your feelings or stings the Ego a little…and it also lifts you up and fills your bucket and maybe strokes your Ego just a little. But it’s real and it’s true and it’s all of us. The parts we like and love and admire as well as the parts we hate and despise and are embarrassed of.

So, in my ten years of teaching yoga, I can honestly say that I have learned
So, in the past ten years, the biggest thing I have learned is

Huh. Apparently I have learned too many things and had too many life lessons and character building experiences that I can’t narrow it down. That was the last 10 years…and now, I am so excited to see what I can get up to in the NEXT 10 years!!

Until then, thank you to everyone. Seriously. Thanks. We’re all here at the same time, we might as well help eachother out!!

Love,
Ida xx

5.31.03-6.2.13 Ten Years!

5.31.03-6.2.13 Ten Years!


Hello my loves!!

Last week I spent some time working on an email interview with a fab woman I know, and have known for some years now (she said since 2005!), Jennifer Lee, for (one of) her website, Peace and Hotness. Jen opened Bikram Yoga Whiterock (a studio that ranks up in my top 5 I’ve been to…it’s on the second floor, has an amazing view of the ocean in the distance, is almost all windows and catches some AH-MAZE-ING sun/sky shows!), back many years ago, but is constantly evolving (oh gosh I LOVE all the stuff Jen has been up to lately!! Go check out one of her OTHER projects…The Vegan Project) and now has so many other things on the go, she no longer owns the studio but has now given birth to some more relevant to her now passions!! Seriously, go check out her blog/action, she’s a total inspiration. Love you Jen xx

Jennifer Lee Boyle. Beauty.

Jennifer Lee Boyle. Beauty.

So, anyhow, here is the interview. Jennifer had been specific with me not to answer as the yoga teacher, not answering what my students need to hear but simply and from my heart. Well, I realised that my integrity is strong, the answers I gave happen to be the things I would (and do!) say to my students. I liked that I thought about it as I wrote my answers, and I like that I am who I am…with anyone and everyone.

Have a read, it’s a good one 😉
How Ida Ripley Lives With Pleasure + Ease – MuseDays

Love and giggles, have a wonderful day, yogis!!
-Ida xx


the L.O.V.E. post…

Love what you do and do what you love.
Love what you see and see what you love.
Be with who you love and love who you are with.
Go where you love and love where you go.
Be where you love and love where you are.
Hear what you love and love what you hear.
Smell what you love and love what you smell.
Say what you love and love what you say.
Wear what you love and loe what you wear.
Eat what you love and love what you eat.

Surround yourself with love…

…are you getting what I’m laying down?

I love you.
xx

2013 is all for love and love for all. Yeah, sounds good.


Namaste…One Love…get my drift?

Good afternoon my lovelies!! It’s an ah-maz-ing day here in Truckee…the summer is holding on for as long as it can…someone said today it’s supposed to snow next week so we’d better enjoy it…but everyone is always talking about snowing around here so I’ll believe it when I see it.

aaaaaannnnnyyyyyhow….this morning I was in class and my mind went to “namaste”. Some teachers say it, some don’t, some understand it, some don’t. Some mean it…some don’t…so, this led me to think about what it means to me and what I think about it (I, by the way, say it at the end of my class…but I will be honest, there have been times I’ve taught class and not said it because I did not feel connected to the students…my issue, not theirs). So, here’s my deal with it….Namaste, as far as I am concerned is an acknowledgement that we are all one. One love. That no matter what the outside package looks like or sounds like or does or how it behaves, we are all one….sparked from one energy, one common light and at that inner most place, we are all one…

I have only had a few experiences, through meditation, where I actually really understood this and got it. This knowledge of everything coming from one and everything being connected…everyone and everything. So, even on days when my ego gets the better of me and I get angry at someone or frustrated or stressed out or whatever, when I allow myself to remember, I always remember that we are all one, one love…namaste.

I also just wanted to say a big thanks to all of you who commented on my last post about the yoga tops!! I managed to make it through a week of doubles at TT in LA without wearing a bandeau and no one died ;). I got a couple new tops from my friends at Yogabela and I also got a few new pieces from my friends at Onzie….I am still on the hunt for the “perfect” yoga top for me, but I also know myself and know that my style comes and goes, so having options is really the most important thing…always on the look out for the things that make me feel the best in class…we all know how it makes a difference how you feel in class when you aren’t constantly tugging or adjusting your yoga costume!!

Have a wonderful afternoon, yogis…I am about to get headed out to teach a double tonight.

I will be making an appearance in Victoria over the next few weeks, at BYSaanich…and maybe a class or two over in Van City if I can wrangle any up…so, hope to see you Victoria yogis soon!!

Love and unicorn kisses.
And, Namaste.
~Ida x


Forgot to mention the OTHER freebie this weekend!

Good morning everyone!! What a beautiful morning…I was just checking the weather and we are expecting highs to TWENTY FIVE today!!! OMG THANK GOODNESS SUMMER HAS ARRIVED! I cannot say it often enough 😉 I am going to do my yoga this morning, 10am at BYSaanich, so I have the rest of the day to enjoy…actually, I have a few other things I have to do so the whole day won’t be spent lazing around in the sunshine, but I will def have a few hours of it. And…tonight we are heading to the Buchart Gardens for the 2012 fireworks display. Good times good times.

OK…this is really why I wanted to write a quickie post this morning though…I forgot to mention in my post from the other day Some FUN FREE YOGA things coming up…. The Hudson Yoga studio has been having free yoga all this week and classes are still free through Sunday. I checked out the new studio this week and am happy to report, I snagged a free parking spot in the parkade (there are about 15 spots in the parkade which are free during the week for 2 hours as well as maybe 6 or 8 spots out front on the street…and then after 5pm and on the weekends, the entire parkade is free!) which was a good omen!

Ken made it his goal to ensure the yoga room was finished on time (you know how these things go with building, the completion dates are often pushed back and back…), but the rest of the studio-changerooms, lobby etc, is still under construction. No worries, the showers worked, the toilets flushed, the rest of it isn’t imperative in my opinion. The room is pretty, high ceilings, radiant heat panels, fresh air intake, cork floors. The floors are slippery when wet so watch your step after your practice.

On the website the classes are listed as “Hudson 60” and “Hudson 90″…the class I took was a 90 and was exactly the Bikram series. (There was an article in the Times Colonist last weekend in which he said they weren’t doing Bikram Yoga…I guess they just aren’t calling it that but the teachers are teaching the same series). I believe there is also a flow class and a yin class offered but I haven’t looked to closely at the schedule.

So…classes are still free today and tomorrow and I imagine there are all sorts of deals and steals for memberships during this free week. ALSO, today they are having a health expo out front of the studio. I might wander down there later to check out what’s happening…so far I have heard of live music and Salt of Life being there…

OK, Lovelies, must run. Have a super awesome day, go play outside!

Love,
Ida


Excuse me, but what time zone am I in anyhow?

Hello my puppies!

I just got back to Victoria from a fantastic trip away…I was in Athen, Georgia, and then in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The whole trip reminded me…once again…how blessed I am and how much I love what I do.

In Athens my friend Jolin is getting the community flexi and hot in a beautiful new Bikram Yoga Athens which she just opened last December. I first met Jolin last summer in Birmingham, Alabama, and am so happy I got to her studio last week! Not only is the studio gor-geous, but so full of love and possibility, it’s contagious. As the studio is so new, there were may new students there…many people who have just started practicing-several who practiced at other studios, but a good portion of them are just starting their Bikram practice. I love working with people who have a good handle on their bodies already, people who have been practicing for years, people who I can help with small details and adjustments…but honestly, there is nothing like the look in a person’s eye and the smile on a person’s face when he or she thinks she has no chance in ever doing something and together we find something new, surpass an old belief about herself and her body and capabilities…seriously, there is nothing like it.
The weekend was full and bursting with wonderful people and food and visiting and yoga and sunshine and and and and. Jolin even had a little bowl of raw treats and goodies beside my bed for me to snack on through the weekend…seriously adorable.

After I left Athens, I flew up to Winnipeg, MA for a week of classes and yogis and friends…all ending with judging the first Manitoba Hatha Yoga Competition.
Let me start by saying that I LOVE the Winnipeg Bikram community! I have been to Winnipeg two other times and always have such a great time there…in and out of the yoga room. To be honest, I haven’t seen a whole lot of the city, but a city is really made by the people in it…right?!
This trip I was staying with my friends, Amanda and Kevin. They own Stafford Street Hot Yoga. Not only do they run a tight ship, teaching fab true to form Bikram yoga, but they have a huge kitchen called Ume’s Kitchen and lounge area for yogis to hang out, eat good food and visit before and after classes. They make smoothies, teas and “love buns” on Fridays and Saturdays and on special occasions they bring in people to make delicious meals.

I came in to Winnipeg when I did mostly to get a chance to work a bit with some of the competitors. The competitors at SSHY had been working on their routines relentlessly for weeks every day before and after classes in the lobby of the studio. Everyone knew what they were doing, sometimes watched, sometimes stepped over them on the way to the changerooms…the competitors supported eachother, timed eachother and gave eachother feedback and corrections. What a cute group they were! I slid in, in the end, to provide a little bit of polishing for them, but they did so much work before I got there.

On Sunday we had a sold out house (the theatre sat 250 and apparently they had to turn away 75 people at the door!). What a great first go in Manitoba!!

And, besides all the yoga, I got to go to the Ten Spa! Its a beautiful new spa in the newly redone Fort Garry Hotel in dt Winnipeg. When you go, you must go early and sit in the steam room and shower in the mint mist and lounge in your fluffy white robe and eat treats and sip tea…seriously, a little vacation in the middle of your life at any time!

AND, I got to spend time with Amanda and Kevin and their amazing new boy, Eyvi. What a delight he is…there really is nothing like being with a small human to make you realize the wonder of the world!