Name: Daphne Feller
Major: Asian Studies
Hometown: Tenafly, NJ
HC: How and when did you first start studying yoga?
DF: My inspiration to start doing a physical yoga practice came from my older sister the summer before my sophomore year in high school. I started with simple YouTube videos by an awesome yogi name Sadie Nardini. I was only interested in the physical practice of yoga for the first three years. Once I became certified to teach, I realized there had been worlds of knowledge about yoga that I didn’t know existed. Thinking about it now I would say the summer going into my freshmen year of college is when I really started “studying” yoga and all of it’s many facets, before then I was really just doing a rigorous physical yoga practice.
HC: What is your favorite thing about yoga?
DF: Such a hard question…there are really so many parts to yoga that I don’t know if I could pick. Something I can say confidently, which may be a little vague, but my favorite thing about yoga is how much it’s positively changed my life; Through the physical practice I’ve fostered a stronger sense of self-discipline, by reading about yoga philosophy I’ve learned how to act as a kinder more humble human being, the list could really go on for awhile…
HC: What is your favorite type of yoga?
DF: I don’t know if I really have a favorite but because I am certified in vinyasa yoga I predominantly practice this style, which is a faster flow where breath and bodily movement are in a sort of synchronization. Every now and then I go to a yin or restorative class to decompress but it’s less often. I used to do a lot of hot yoga, before I became certified but I tend to shy away from these classes now because I find the heat can sometimes be distracting and hinder the practice. Bikram is also something I don’t practice very often mostly because I like the creativity involved in vinyasa yoga, but still very much respect this style.
HC: What made you want to learn more about yoga and get your certification?
DF: I originally wanted to get the 200 hour certification because I loved the way yoga made me feel and was going to the studio in my home town like six times a week, so I thought I’d go for it. The certification was definitely not what I expected but turned out to be one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I did my 200 hour certification with Laughing Lotus Yoga Studio in Chelsea NY, NY (such an amazing place that I would highly recommend visiting). I did an additional 100 hours with the same studio a year later in Bali, Indonesia. I choose to do an additional 100 hours because I knew it would strengthen my teaching skills and ignite my passion to learn about yogic philosophy even more.
HC: What was it like studying in Bali?
DF: Studying in Bali changed my life. I could write forever about my experience in the teacher training in Bali but I’ll try to be as concise as possible. Laughing Lotus not only teaches yoga asana (physical postures) but also uses a plethora of other things like mythology, ayurveda, chakras of the body, etc. to deepen the yoga practice and teaching skills. Although I had learned some of this stuff in the original 200 hour training it was definitely delved deeper into here. Bali is such an amazing place and I am lucky enough to go back this winter break with Skidmore for a travel seminar…can’t wait!
HC: Do you plan on doing anything further to explore more into the yoga world?
DF: Of course! My major is Asian Studies with a South Asian focus and my minor is Exercise Science. I choose the major because I think it’ll let me learn more about the places in which yoga first started and many of the philosophies, schools of thought, practices, etc. that coincide with it. I also think exercise science as a minor will be beneficial for my understanding of the human body, which obviously is a large part of the physical yoga practice. Right now I want more than anything to pursue a career in yoga. I hope to spread all these amazing things I’ve learned and continue to learn on my journey.
HC: When and where can we take your class?!
DF: I teach in downtown Saratoga at “All Good Things”, it’s a spa/juice bar/yoga studio that’s brand new and such a beautiful place to be working. My class is on Tuesday nights 6:30-7:30 pm and is only $10 for students. I also teach on the Skidmore campus in Wilson Chapel (these dates are a bit more random but if you would like more info e-mail me at [email protected]!)