YOGA AT OAK RIDGE HIGH SCHOOL

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I had the privilege to teach yoga to the freshman class at Oak Ridge High School the last two Mondays. Through this experience I was reminded of the importance of five specific fundamental principles that I value: INTEGRITY, CONSISTENCY, SERVICE, PRESENCE and TRUST. When we are able to embody these principles we give ourselves the opportunity to make a bigger impact within a community that we are already apart of AND in developing NEW community.

  • INTEGRITY is the foundation of life. The standard at which we hold ourselves accountable to our values and beliefs creates the level of integrity that we live from every day. When living from a place of integrity, we are confident in ourselves and in our choices because they are aligned with our beliefs. One of our core values at Spotted Dog Yoga is integrity and we believe that the type of yoga we teach and practice allows people to create personal accountability to recognize when integrity is missing AND gives them the tools to bring themselves back into alignment…to be true to themselves. Teaching yoga to high school students is not easy but I have no doubts around the quality of the experience that was delivered to them. I was able to be myself because I hold myself accountable to “doing the work” and I was confident in the yoga practice because I know that it works!
  • CONSISTENCY is one of my favorite words, because I have learned that it is the only way to create discipline, focus and effectiveness in doing ANYTHING. When we are consistent in embodying what we stand for, people will follow our lead! I taught Baptiste Power Yoga to the Oak Ridge High School students. I teach Baptiste Power Yoga at Spotted Dog Yoga. This practice is what I believe in and what I know works. As a teacher, I believe that what I teach is just as important as how I teach and I would never compromise what I stand for no matter who I am in front of.
  • SERVICE makes a difference. When put in front of a group of people, we can never know who is in front of us or what type of impact we are having on them. When we offer up our knowledge in the spirit of service, we share tools and skills with people that may not have had access to them otherwise. When we remove expectations or attachment to financial or personal benefits, our true passion for what we love to do flows out of us! I was honored to donate my time to Oak Ridge High School in order to share my passion for teaching yoga and connecting community.
  • PRESENCE is a super power. When we are able to come out of our head and into the moment at hand, we give ourselves the ability to find untapped potential. When we are stuck in thought, we can get stuck in our default patterns of being. When we are in the moment, we are working from RIGHT NOW and connections just happen. I can easily worry about “what could go wrong” when anticipating working with a group or in a space that I am unfamiliar with. Through the practice of Baptiste Yoga I have learned that all I have to do is let go of sticking to a plan and be present with the people that are with me right now.
  • TRUST the process. Incorporate integrity, consistency, service and presence into your awareness and do the work to keep them present. Beyond that, trust that what you are delivering, sharing, saying is authentic to YOU and that it matters. If something doesn’t work out the way you planned, trust that everything happens for a reason!

Thank you Oak Ridge High School for having me! I also want to thank Chantell Trumbull for volunteering to be my assistant…it made such a huge difference to have your support and share this with you!

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“WORKING ON YES!” By Rachel Camero

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Being a YES takes work.  It’s not easy to embrace the opportunities that life offers us.  In fact, it’s not even easy to recognize them when they are in front of us. Opportunities can arrive disguised as challenges or adversity.  Other opportunities show up as things we determine to be out of reach.
Last week I was presented with such an opportunity.  A friend mentioned that she’d like to go to Kona Hawaii and stay at her parents’ house before it is being sold at the end of March.  Immediately, I thought, “yah, that would be awesome” and then shrugged it off as an out of reach concept and let it go.  Two days later I received a text, “Kona?”.
Suddenly the realization that my friend was serious and that I was not sunk in.  While I continued to write it off as impossible, the feeling that I wasn’t open to being a YES nagged at me.   Still, I focused on all of the reasons it was unrealistic.
  • Short notice
  • It will cost money I wasn’t planning to spend
  • I have too much going on a work
  • I’d be away from my family (and on my Birthday)
  • My husband is traveling for work, who will care for the kids?
 I had made up my mind that it was just not good timing.  But still I felt unsettled by my own unwillingness.  I started to explore the deeper reasons behind my resistance.  Thoughts and feelings about being outside of my comfort zone showed up.  I might start to feel awkward with my friend and her family (believe it or not, I’m an introvert and need time alone or with my family to recharge)?  What if don’t look good in a bathing suit?  What if I can’t keep up with my friend in the surf?  In other words, feelings of self-doubt and insecurity with leaving my comfort zone were my largest obstacle.
As I came to this realization, I knew deep down that I had to find my way to YES!  A few more days passed, but I began to check off my logistical obstacles one by one.  I began to evaluate my blessings.  A loving husband who absolutely supports me having independent lady fun.  Parents and in-laws who love spending time with my kids and have helped me raise them with love.  A great job with flexibility and an income that supports this type of spontaneity.
With no logistical obstacles remaining, I was forced to face my deeper insecurities.  I want to continue to challenge the boundaries of my comfort zone.  Every time I do this, my comfort zone gets larger and more inclusive of amazing experiences.  When it comes to a new challenge at work, or at home, I know how to embrace it.  But, for some reason, simply taking a personal trip without my family put me on edge.
I’m writing this now to say I am a YES!  My flight is booked and I’ll have subs for my classes this week.  I can’t wait to share my experiences with you in class when I get back.  Now that I’ve written this, it feels so silly to think it was difficult for me to arrive at YES for something like this.  I mean, how blessed am I that this is what I struggle with?  But the truth is, we all have areas where we need to work on YES.  Today I am a YES!
Rachel Camero
Spotted Dog Yoga Teacher

“Give Up the Need to Know” by Emily Kendall

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 The 40 Days to Personal Revolution Program is about to start and I am SO excited. I love this program; gaining a deeper understanding of yoga philosophy, learning and exploring the new habits and practices related to my diet and stress management, not to mention the enhanced camaraderie around the studio! It has changed my life in so many positive ways.
“I don’t have enough time – how can I?” Of course, there is that voice! That one in the back of my head. Typically it doesn’t have anything good to say. You know the one. It creeps into thoughts and says, “You don’t have time for that!” “You aren’t going to make all the meetings, so how can you really succeed?”
During the last 40 Days Program I almost didn’t participate due to business travel for work. The energy was building at the studio with excitement and I was going to sit this one out. The thought of not being 100% available made me feel like a failure, even before the program started.
“Give up the need to know.” A sign I interacted with almost daily after my yoga practice – posted on the exit door of the PLAY HARD room at Spotted Dog Yoga (SDY). This idea was a foreign philosophy. I have spent my nearly 40 years on this earth collecting ALL and everything I can. And I love planning, planning my day, planning my week, planning anything and everything. This sign challenged me, challenged my life long belief to know, to know ALL I possibly can.
Fellow yogis were talking more and more about the upcoming 40 Days Program. I was frustrated, I wanted to sign up too…but how? How can I make it all work? I can’t figure it all out! I can’t plan every detail. Suddenly it hit me like a ton of yoga blocks! I was scared that I wouldn’t be able to participate and commit to my fullest because life was too busy. I was willing to give up without even trying. I couldn’t control where I was going to be and where I was going to eat, I didn’t even want to sign up and see what I could do with my life at this current busy state.
I had to “give up the need to know,” to give up that my participation needed to be all planned out. Suddenly being out of town felt like an opportunity! Yes, I can’t plan for everything but here is a chance to practice. To practice my commitment to self-care even though my schedule is not perfect for it. Life is outside my control and I am going to commit to doing the work with what I have in the present moment.
The perfect time rarely comes when you want it too. Life keeps going – often not as planned.
Yes, travelling and doing the program was challenging at the same time. I missed a meeting and didn’t make it to all the Friday night practices, but I also got to practice at new studios with interesting and fun teachers. The daily meditation practice grounded me in my commitment again and again as a reminder to do the work and balance what I could do with my schedule. The weekly themes gave me new and powerful tools to help me move through any extra unforeseen daily challenges. Plus I had the support of my fellow yogis in this powerful and supportive community at SDY.
It was another life changing experience, I lost weight, tried new recipes, enhanced my yoga practice and shifted my resistance towards meditation. I recommend this program to everyone!
Emily Kendall
Spotted Dog Yoga Teacher

Call Him JOHNNY VEGAS..and he might just sing to you!

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TEACHER FEATURE: Eugene Shim

Some may call him “Shimmy” or, on rare occasion, “Johnny Vegas” but if you’re looking on the SDY class schedule you know him as…Eugene Shim. He is originally from San Francisco but currently lives in El Dorado Hills with his wife Vanessa, two kids, Zach & Olivia, plus two dogs, Angel & Ginger, to complete their lineup. Eugene’s favorite hobbies include sharing his love of yoga through teaching and attending comic conventions with his family. He has worked in law enforcement for the past 20 years, currently assigned as a detective with the Sacramento Police Department, and even started a yoga program for Sacramento Police and Fire employees. Eugene loves putting costumes together for his whole family so that they can “geek out” at various sci-fi and pop culture gatherings. He also enjoys the challenges of repairing broken electronic devices, making home improvements, and believes that coffee is the most important meal of the day.

Yoga has brought Eugene to a higher level of self-awareness. It allows him to feel more of what’s going on in his body and he feels more mentally focused on and off the mat. Yoga also compliments his running and CrossFit because of increased breath control, mental focus and body alignment/integrity. Like many SDY members, Eugene juggles hectic work and home responsibilities. His yoga practice helps bring balance and sanity to his life. To stay consistent, he simply makes the time for his practice and does his best to commit to the classes that work for him. Most often, you’ll find Eugene practicing at Spotted Dog Yoga during afternoon classes that coincide with “I PLAY YOGA” classes. He loves that his whole family can practice at the same time!

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Going through the SDY Teacher Empowerment Program has transformed the way Eugene practices and teaches. His favorite thing about teaching yoga is watching a student have a breakthrough in a pose or throughout a practice. Seeing these shifts in others inspires and motivates him to present opportunities for people to make discoveries through his teaching.

Eugene loves the SDY community, particularly our positive vibe and ability to connect with each other. He encourages everyone to spread the word about the work we do here at Spotted Dog Yoga so that the growth of our community continues! Every new person adds to the vibrancy of our space!

We are so grateful that Eugene, and his family, are such an integral part of SDY! He inspires us to continue to do the work so that we may all inspire others to do the same.