Live Be Yoga ambassadors Jeremy Falk and Aris Seaberg are on a road trip across the country to share real talk with master teachers, explore innovative classes, and so much more—all to illuminate what’s in store for the future of yoga.
From an event that dove into yoga is being used in addiction recovery to a fundraiser supporting a yogi running for Congress, the LBY team discovers strong ties within the Austin yoga community.
Yoga for Recovery at Pure Yoga Austin
Pure Yoga Austin hosted an event called Yoga for Recovery, and it was unlike anything else we’ve attended on the tour. It was a community gathering to raise awareness of addiction and substance abuse through yoga classes and an illuminating panel of researchers, organizations, and recoverers. It was fascinating when Austin Dell Medical School’s Dr. Kasey Claborn presented the science behind addiction, as well as yoga’s ability to rewire the brain. We joined a class with yoga teacher Monica LeBansky and heard her story as well. She has been sober for 5 years; yoga in part played a role in her recovery. (A video about our day at this amazing event is coming soon!)
It was clear that Mardy and Jeff Chen, the founders of the Pure Yoga Texas family of studios, truly care about the Austin community, and their drive and compassion are inspirational! In fact, the Chens started a nonprofit called Pure Action that supports its members’ recovery efforts by offering 30 days of free yoga. It also funds research on how yoga affects the brain when it comes to addiction.
On top of all of this, they host an annual Yoga Research Conference that dives into the latest research in yoga. It’s a weekend for yoga teachers, practitioners, health care providers, and researchers to learn together and network. This year’s conference is October 27-28, so there’s still time for you to get involved. Click here for more details and to get your ticket.
Send a Yogi to Congress at Wanderlust Yoga Austin
As yoga has evolved beyond a trend and begins to be implemented in more ways into American culture, we are seeing yogis taking on bigger roles outside of the studio. There are now yogis creating free and community yoga and those creating nonprofits to support a wide range of populations. There also are activists speaking up about important issues. But we had yet to see much yoga seeping into politics… until now!
We were able to witness a community coming together to support Julie Oliver, a local yoga teacher, attorney, health-care advocate, mother of four—and now candidate for Congress! Wanderlust Yoga Downtown, along with many teachers from the community, hosted a night of yoga to raise awareness for Julie’s campaign for a US House seat in Texas’s 25th District. Along with a round-robin session of yoga from teachers like Leah Cullis, we also learned about why Julie is running, along with her platform. “If we had congressional leaders who would just take a breath before making a statement or a decision, we would see a very different political landscape in America,” she told us at the event.
Read more Meet the Bold Yogi Running for Congress
Special Namaste to Our Partner
Our Jade Yoga mats have now traveled thousands of miles with us, from hot yoga to restorative yoga, from rooftops classes to park-side sessions! No matter the style of yoga or environment, Jade Yoga’s non-slip mats have kept us flowing with ease. We are grateful to have the support of a company that believes in creating the best yoga mat for your practice and the planet, as well as has service built into the business! For every mat you purchase, Jade plants a tree in Africa that revitalizes the soil and helps communities farm again. Jade is the one-stop shop for those who care!
Yoga Teachers Thrive at Practice Yoga Austin
According to its website, Practice Yoga Austin “offers absurdly high quality, donation-based yoga. All day, everyday, we’re making authentic lineage-based yoga accessible to everyone.” This model not only enables more people to do yoga, but it also allows their teachers to make more money! It’s no secret that yoga teachers have to work their tails off, often running from one studio to the next to make ends meet. This is a beautiful example of passion meeting compassion to create a solution that empowers teachers and practitioners alike.
Practice Yoga is also known in the Austin community for offering what they call “Dark Yoga,” which is a class that welcomes in a different crowd than the usual vinyasa sessions; instead, it takes place in a dark room while they flow and rock out to black metal music!
Good Vibes at Sukha Yoga Austin
In Sanskrit the word sukha means happy, content, or at ease—and this is exactly how I felt entering Sukha Yoga Austin’s east side location. The newly reinvented space is vibrant, full of intention, and just as welcoming as the co-owner Erinn Leigh. She led us through a bhakti-style (devotional), restorative Yin Yoga class that incorporated Chinese Medicine in an approachable and tangible way. It was one of those classes that felt like it was somehow designed just for me. Every aspect of the class nourished us in the perfect way. Everything about the space, the class, and the teachers at Sukha has made it my new yoga home in Austin!
Bonus Travel Tip from the Live Be Yoga Team
One way to stay grounded and support your body and immune system is to take care of your biggest organ—your skin! It’s important to keep it hydrated and use high quality, natural ingredients since whatever we put on our skin is also absorbed into the rest of our bodies.
Our recommendation is the brand that has produced organic skin care products for nearly a century—Weleda! Our go-to choices are Skin Food, a deeply nourishing cream for those extra dry areas, and Arnica Massage Oil, perfect to soothe sore and tired muscles while quenching thirsty skin.