I am YogaFit: Jon and Alena9/12/2016
We are happy to feature Jon and Alena, one of YogaFit's power couples that train together and continue to practice yoga together. They have been a part of the YogaFit community since 2015 and although they live in New York State we have had the pleasure of training them and getting to know them at our Mind Body Fitness Conferences and yoga teacher trainings in Toronto.
Quick Fire Questions
What’s your day job?
Alena - ACH Operations at Key Bank
Jon - Logistics Broker at Productive Transportation
What are your morning must-haves?
Alena & Jon - A gratitude moment, workout and coffee/tea
What is your favourite YogaFit training?
Alena & Jon - Level 4
What is the title of your biography?
Alena - “Don’t look back, you’re not going that way”
Jon - “Life is about the journey, not the destination”
Alena & Jon - YogaFit offers the flexibility to be able to pick and choose trainings that fit our busy schedules.
In Their Own Words:
What brought you to your mat?
Alena - Initially, Jon encouraged me to join him at the yoga classes he was attending. The ability to slow down in this fast-paced, hectic world enticed me to continue coming to my mat. I found a calm peace through my yoga practice.
Jon - A back injury I suffered in 2003 was what first brought me to my mat. I was healing and going through physical therapy, but I wanted to do more on my own to strengthen my back and prevent any future injuries. I began a home practice with a few DVD’s that I purchased. It didn’t take long to notice the mind-body connection that I found through yoga and my time on the mat. The issue with my home practice was my lack of consistency. In 2009, I found a local “studio” that the instructor ran out of her house. In my first class, I found a new connection with yoga and I was hooked by the class environment.
How did you discover YogaFit?
Alena & Jon - As our love for yoga deepened, we decided to take a Teacher Training to be able to teach the yoga we loved and to share its many benefits with our local community. The owner of the studio that we attended began her own teaching journey with YogaFit, so with her advice, we chose YogaFit.
How long have you been practicing and training together?
Alena & Jon - We’ve been practicing together for over 6 years, through studio classes and our home practice. We’ve been YogaFit teacher training together since February 2015. Jon just completed his 200 RYT and Alena will finish in January 2017.
What made you decide to choose YogaFit as part of your yoga journey?
Alena & Jon - Our initial intention was to take Level 1 and begin teaching right away, without any definitive plan for future trainings. After Level 1, we were hooked. The philosophies and principles of the YogaFit program, which are based on breath, awareness, safety and alignment, created a connection with us that we couldn’t ignore. The instructors and fellow trainees that we’ve met at each training have become friends and family to us. The energy of spending time with like-minded people at the trainings is amazing. We both feel that our yoga journey and learning will never end and we plan to continue training through YogaFit.
What is your favourite YogaFit memory/training so far?
Alena - My favorite YogaFit memory was at the Toronto Mind Body Fitness Conference in April 2016. We took a break from our training to attend a kirtan with all of the other trainees, something I knew nothing about. The thought of singing in a room full of strangers was intimidating and a little scary. As we began to sing, the sound vibrations and energy encompassed the room, and filled me with joy. That is a memory that I will never forget.
Jon - My favorite YogaFit memory happened at the Level 4 training at the Toronto Mind Body Fitness Conference in April 2016. It was our first training in Canada and we met so many amazing people that became our YogaFit Canada family. The training was based on yoga tradition and how we can bring those traditions into our lives, our practice and our teaching. We practiced, learned, laughed and cried together for 4 days. The energy and light from that training was amazing.
What has been the impact of your yoga teacher training in your life and in the lives of those you teach?
Alena - I have come to understand that yoga is not just about the asana, but also about the mind-body connection and the way that we live. My teaching style has continued to evolve over the past 2 years, and this keeps people coming back to my classes.
Jon - The YogaFit Teacher training has impacted my life in so many ways. Most importantly, I have continued to learn and grow as a yogi. With each training, I have been able to shed my layers to find more of my true self. Every aspect of my life has been affected by my experiences through the teacher training. Through my experiences and growth, I have become a better instructor to those attending my yoga classes.
When you look forward, what does your yoga journey look like?
Alena - I will continue to practice, teach, and share my love of yoga with anyone who will listen.
Jon - I will continue to learn and grow through my personal yoga practice, and I will continue to learn and train to be able to bring yoga to a world that needs it.
Finally, give us one of your favourite go-to cues you use to teach your students.
Alena - “When the mind wanders, come back to the breath”
Jon - “Through our breath and conscious movement, we find ourselves”
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