☀️Celebrate Summer Solstice and International Yoga Day with Steamtown Yoga, Spices By Rebekah, and our sponsor Pukka Tea!Read More
What to wear in hot yoga doesn’t need to take up any more of your time, effort or energy. Here are Lara’s top picks.Read More
Need a yoga wardrobe refresher? We’ve got you covered with Zyia Active. Need clothes now! Shop online and get it shipped directly to you! Want to try on, touch, and feel first? Pop-up show start February 25 at Steamtown Hot Yoga.Read More
Chinese New Year, Feng Shui Tips, and Personal Empowerment for your 2019 Abundance Star.Read More
Stuck inside during this deep freeze? Need to get out but feeling stiff and uninspired? Try this short, easy yoga sequence you can do right from your bed! Another collaboration with Lara and First for Women to make your day a little bit better. Enjoy!Read More
Lara and Jimmy met up recently on Facebook Live to answer a few questions about the upcoming 26 & 2 Hot Yoga Teacher Training.
Below are highlights. Some of the questions and answers have been shortened while staying true to the spirit and facts of the conversation. You can watch the whole video on our Facebook page HERE.
Intro: [Lara first studied with Jimmy Barkan in 2008 at his Fort Lauderdale Studio. In 2014, Lara led a group SHY to attend his Barkan Method Level 2/3 Teacher Training. Many of our students met him last fall during the workshops he taught here at SHY.]
LA: Besides knowing us at Steamtown Yoga, how do you know Scranton and what is your personal connection to this area?
JB: I grew up in Pittsburgh and went to summer camp near Scranton, every summer from the age of 11 to 17. I attended a competitive sports camp [near Clarks Summit].
LA: 11 - 17 are the formative years! What sport did you play?
JB: It included every different kind of sport, like an Olympic sports training camp.
LA: Lots of yoga is out there and it’s easy for someone to find a studio and a training and have a good experience with yoga and experience its life changing qualities.
What makes our training special and how does it fit into the greater Hot Yoga world?
JB: I began training Bikram Yoga teachers in the late 1980’s in Los Angeles at Bikram’s headquarters. At that time, I was the only person (besides Bikram) allowed to certify Bikram teachers until 1994 when Bikram started his first condensed teacher training program. [Lara attended this training in 2003] I stayed in LA working with Bikram until 2002 when I relocated to FL and developed the Barkan Method of Hot Yoga.
I never stopped teaching and focusing on the 26 and 2 postures of the Bikram series and they are at the core of the Barkan Method. Now with Bikram ostracized from the yoga community, there’s a demand here in the United States for qualified Hot Yoga teachers in our great lineage.
I was Bikram’s most senior teacher for about 18 years.
LA: At SHY, we believe in connecting to a yoga lineage and connecting to a source. I know we do a whole lesson in the history of yoga in the training, but can you tell us a little bit about the history of the Hot Yoga lineage?
JB: Our connection dates back to Mahavatar Babaji who brought these ancient teachings from the dark ages into the light in the 1700’s. From this lineage is Paramhansa Yogananda, considered one of the greatest yogis of our time. Yagananda’s younger brother was Bishnu Gosh, who was Bikram’s teacher.
LA: Who is this training for? I know some of our students are mulling it over and are a little worried that they may not even be able to get through the day. They’re concerned they are not advanced enough for the training.
JB: We require at least 6 months of practice before entering the training, although we can be flexible on this. You don’t have to be an advanced practitioner: I’d say 70% of the teachers out there right now don’t have an advanced practice. You just need an understanding of where that advanced practice is.
You don’t even need to want to teach. Some people just want to immerse themselves in the experience and find the personal growth.
The teacher training is for anyone who wants to delve into the history of yoga, the subject of yoga, and explore it within their own practice and improve their own communication skills and find their own voice.
One of the things I think I do best is help people find their own authentic voice. I help you find a pattern of speech that students can can listen to, and understand, and makes sense, and that helps you everywhere you’re public speaking.
LA: Yes, public speaking! I remember the comedian Jerry Seinfeld did a routine years ago on a poll that revealed people’s number one fear is public speaking and their number two fear is death. He said that means most people would prefer being in the casket to being the one giving the eulogy!
JB: Funny you bring up Jerry Seinfeld because I taught Jerry Seinfeld yoga. He was a big Bikram Yoga fan and when he came to Florida, he came into my studio looking for Bikram Yoga.
LA: I like to think you helped Jerry Seinfeld find his authentic voice! Last question: tell us about your singing career!
JB: I studied theatre at NYU. I first went to LA to pursue singing and then I met Bikram and my life turned upside down. Now I’ve come back to the singing and perform all over in all size venues.
It’s really the same as teaching yoga:
It’s all about communication and connection.
Enrolling into a 200 hour Hot Yoga Teacher Training has some obvious benefits, but here are a few of the more subtle and unexpected bonuses you can expect.Read More
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Is it too hot? Is it to hard? Can I really do it? I'm not flexible! We've heard all of these concerns and more from our first time students, most of whom have no prior yoga experience at all!
We partnered with Discover NEPA to create this video so you can see first hand a little more about who we are and what we offer.Read More
What a yoga champion can teach us about competition, motivation, Karma Yoga, and non-attachment.Read More
Author, award-winning yoga studio owner, and transformational speaker Lara Alexiou was a guest on the podcast Fit Fierce and Fabulous, hosted by certified fitness trainer, behavioral change specialist, and #FFF founder, Courtney Bentley. Join the conversation on happiness, stepping into your life's purpose, and the meaning of fit, fierce, and fabulous.Read More
Lara Alexiou and Julia Treat connect recently on the podcast Stepping into the Light. Julia shares how Hot Yoga helps her manage Lyme Disease.Read More
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Sound vibrations are on my mind this summer. The more I delve into my own yoga practice and spiritual studies, the more I understand myself as a vibrational being.Read More
What the actual experience of meditation has taught me that I'd like to share.Read More