The As Seen In series features unconventional, clever, and groundbreaking approaches to asana, meditation, and philosophy straight from the classes of yoga trendsetters. If you have intel on someone particularly inspiring, find us on Facebook and share!
Yogis have a good reputation for being light-hearted, graceful, and joyous, but teacher Kristen Schneider takes it to another level. When I first met this beautiful beaming light years ago in Central Florida, my initial reaction was one of utter awe. Schneider’s students blissfully float out of her classes with delighted ear-to-ear grins. Trust me, if she could make my clumsy, two left feet feel anything like graceful, then she’s sure to leave you feeling simply angelic.
Her secret? Over the years, Schneider has developed a strong knowledge of Ayurveda, yoga’s sister science of holistic healthy living, which she magically weaves into her classes to foster a sense of balance, or sattva. “I feel as though modern life is mostly a parade of to-dos,” Schneider says. “Life can get a bit ‘go-go-go!’ Ayurveda would describe this kinetic state as rajasic.” At the opposite end of the spectrum from all the fire of rajas, she says, is that run-down, burnt-out, overwhelmed, fatigued, or heavy feeling that Ayurveda calls tamasic. The goal as a yogi? To aim for that elusive sattvic balance, of course.
“Sattvic means peaceful, calm, clear, and content,” she says. “This tranquility stems from noticing our tendencies to fall off-kilter and introducing the opposites to re-align us with our true nature. You know you’ve met your true nature when you feel like your highest self. For me, that’s when I feel most creative and fairy-like. True nature is joy!”