Anita Thebeau: My yoga practice earnestly began in 1994 with a very compassionate, encouraging Sivananda teacher and I became addicted to the positive benefits (i.e., more energy, increased flexibility and ability to focus and handle stress – to name a few) of yoga.
Wanting to increase my knowledge of the yogic teachings and learn the nitty gritty of how yoga affects the body and mind as well as sharing with others the benefits that I had received, I enrolled in the Integral Yoga® Teacher’s Training at Yogaville, Virginia in early spring 1997 and mark that time as one of the most wonderful experiences of my life.
Back in the ‘90’s yoga still carried a certain stigma in certain areas and my Dad, having a miss-guided idea of what yoga is all about, asked why I couldn’t just go into ballet. I explained that ballet is tough after 40. Now, he and Mom check periodically if my practice is going okay. They have witnessed the benefits of yoga and I am grateful to have been able to share some of the practices with them. After all, when you come right to it, they were my first yoga teachers – as they taught me the Yamas (non-violence, truthfulness, non-stealing, continence and non-greed), the Niyamas (purity, contentment, not causing pain and the worship of God) and Pratipaksha bhavana (when disturbed by negative thoughts, positive ones should be thought of).
Since receiving my teacher’s certification, my hope is that I have and will continue to convey to my students at least a part of the beautiful benefits of yoga. I am so grateful to them for surely THEY have become some of my greatest teachers.