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Yoga is about the breath - tangible, evident, necessary. This contemplative practice is a quiet daily ritual where I am open and honest with myself. There is no hiding or pretending, no trying to be something that I am not, no expectations. The breath keeps it real - breathing in and breathing out this honesty. It is not always easy. I ask myself why I keep going, why do I do this each day? The answer that comes back is that it feels like home - a space where I feel free.
If you would like to join me and share your yoga practice, I am offering the following workshops in 2021:
Winter Yoga Escape with Kiri and Steph is SOLD OUT, August 12-15th in Queenstown at The Sherwood. 390$ includes all the yoga and one shared vegetarian evening meal on Friday night. Thursday we start at 530pm with an introduction and gentle Led class, and the workshop will close on Sunday at 1130-1pm with a chat and chant. There will be plenty of time during the days for winter adventures - Fri to Sun morning classes will commence at 7:15am with meditation and breath work, followed by Mysore Style Ashtanga, and the evening Yin sessions are at 5:30pm Fri and Sat. Accommodation is separate; for this, booking can be made direct with Tascha at firstname.lastname@example.org for a 15% discount with code Kiri/Steph Yoga. For more information and to book yoga please email me. Waitlist only at this point.
Rarotonga 2021 - September 18-24th with Kiri and Steph
We are headed back to Raro! Six mornings and four evenings of yoga in gorgeous Muri Beach, 450$. We are offering a 15% discount for the first 5 places! Flights and accommodation are yours to sort. For more yoga details and to book, please see https://www.kiriyoga.nz/ - Update: I will not be attending this trip as I have been awarded a scholarship to pursue my graduate studies and time is quite pressed to complete my work - Kiri will take the lead this time.
We have a wonderful sangha here in Waiheke - I am so grateful.
I currently teach three Mysore Style Ashtanga yoga sessions a week at our shala space based at Onetangi Hall, Third Ave Onetangi. Saturdays and Sundays we start at 9am, and Mondays we start at 830am.
There are mats available, though it is advised that you bring your own if possible. It is best to practice on an empty stomach and wear comfortable clothing. A small hand towel can be helpful. I charge 20$ for a casual class and have a concession of 6 classes for 100$ (valid for 3 months).
Mysore Style is a self-led style of vinyasa yoga - the source of this method is a school in Mysore, India. Practitioners memorize the sequence and then move and breath at their own pace through all the asanas.
If you are not familiar with this approach, just send me an email with any questions or concerns. It is challenging but also transformational and empowering. Anyone can practice Ashtanga yoga so long as they are willing. We can find a way together to make this practice accessible for you.
Led classes (when offered) are generally primary series, though occasionally we mix it up with a 1/2 primary, 1/2 intermediate class - sometimes even a bit of third. While I consider myself a traditional teacher for the most part, there is a little rebel in me, and I like to have fun.
Winter Yin Yoga Sessions are beginning Saturday, June 26th and will run every other weekend through August from 4-530pm at Onetangi Hall. Yin yoga is a quiet cool practice, based mostly on the floor with long held postures. This practice is designed to ease tension held in deep connective tissues, and provide quiet time for the mind. Yin is a wonderful compleimtn to other yoga styles and overall busy lives. Dates are June 26th, July 10 and 24th, August 7 and 21st. Classes are 20$, all levels welcome.
You can find me on FB and Insta as Steph Waiheke
Onetangi Hall, Third Ave Onetangi, Waiheke Island
I am originally from rural New England, the northeastern part of the USA. I first started practicing yoga in NYC in the mid-nineties exploring several different yoga traditions, Integral, Sivananda, Jivamukti, Iyengar, eventually discovering Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga. I found yoga helped me cope with the pressures of graduate school and continues to help me be the best version of me.
In 2002, I moved to New Zealand with my family and shortly thereafter started a 2½ year teaching apprenticeship in Ashtanga at the Auckland Yoga Academy (YA500) under Peter Nilsson, completed in 2006. I have been teaching Ashtanga yoga ever since, and more recently Yin yoga, following a Yin YTT with Denise Payne of One Song (Ubud, Bali 2012). I attend class with Dena Kingsberg and Peter Sanson as often as I can, and make trips to India to continue learning.
I am the founder and director of Waiheke Island Ashtanga Yoga and started The Breathing Space (when it was an actual space!) in 2009. I am an Experienced-RYT 500 instructor with the Yoga Alliance, and have lead YA200 and YA300 registered YTT programs. Currently, I offer Yoga Alliance Continuing Education Program (YACEP) courses. I have taught yoga classes, workshops, and YTT courses in the South Pacific, NZ, Australia, China, Jordan, Bali, and the USA.
I am now enrolled as a PhD student at The University of Auckland in the School of Psychology studying the effects of yoga on cognition.
I love co-teaching with Kiri Sutherland and Martina Gotz. We have offered many Trinity Retreats over the past 10 years - always delightful and inspiring. Kiri and I have also teamed up for many yoga adventures including workshops in NZ, Rarotonga, and the legendary India Mission. We hope to continue these adventures in the coming years.
And finally, I have three awesome kids, Hux, Conrad, and Suri, life is rich!
Many thanks to Neal Ghoshal for his hard work keeping The Breathing Space website going!
Photo credit: 1/2 handstand Bali - Urban Yoga Project - by Fela Adebiyi
YA500 - Ashtanga, Auckland Yoga Academy
Experienced - RYT500
PhD in Immunology, 2001, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Tufts University
PhD provisisional candidate, 2020, School of Psychology, The University of Auckland