YOGA LYFE is for the student in YOU.
For you, the new student wondering where to start and how to practice.
For you, the student with burning questions - like what’s the difference between Hatha and Asthanga Yoga? Hint: they’re both sub limbs of Karma Yoga- yoga in action.
For you, the seeker—the lifelong learner searching for diverse perspectives, yoga stories, and a non-dogmatic, yet reverential approach to the practice.
When I first started blogging on yoga, my intention was to share new lessons that got me to think: What is yoga, and how does it really change your life?
Blogging was a way to reflect on and share my studies and travel journeys. I’m amazed at how I’ve barely grazed the tip of the yoga iceberg. There’s so much knowledge, wisdom, and lessons to learn for many lifetimes.
Yoga works subtly. In a way that’s difficult to place into words. It must be practiced first-hand for it to weave its way into your life. What I share here is purely based on personal experience and what I’ve learned from my teachers. The experience of the practice - the highs, the lows and the moments in between. You’ll also hear the voices of other teachers, guides and practitioners who contribute their own personal practice stories.
On our blog you’ll find perspectives on other practices that compliment a yoga student’s life - everything from how minimalism affects your personal sadhana, to how getting back to the essentials dissolves the BS (your own or others) that block your personal growth. There are anecdotes on motherhood and practice, chai recipes and even a little bit of art and fashion on this site.
Congratulations on discovering this ancient vedic practice. Know that you’re in for an unexpected journey. While the road to self study and cultivating inner peace may be paved with discomfort and difficulty, and realizations reveal the dark and light parts of yourself - keep moving forward and keep practicing. Don’t give up.
I hope you enjoy our posts and share our stories with your yogi friends. May you find something that inspires you here that will help you create the balance and peace your soul is searching for.
May all beings be happy and free.
Image © Danielle Tsi
Charina started her yoga journey in 2004 looking to find peace in her fast-paced life as a fashion designer, entrepreneur, and mother. From the very first practice on the mat, Charina discovered how yoga provided an unparalleled reprieve from stress and reminded her of the opportunity for calm and reflection during difficult times. Since 2004 Charina’s been grateful to have studied various yoga traditions from Ashtanga, Iyengar, Yin, and Restorative yoga.
In 2009 Charina began her work with elder adults through social service at her family’s skilled nursing facility. Seeing how movement, breath practice, and meditation benefitted patients during post surgery rehab, Charina was compelled to share the therapeutic benefits of yoga with others.
In 2011 Charina completed her yoga teacher training through Avalon Yoga International. Since then, Charina has travelled to India (2015 & 2016) to deepen her study with her teachers, Sarawasthi and Sharath Jois. Currently, she maintains daily practice through the guidance of her teacher Magnolia Zuniga at Mysore San Francisco. Charina would also like to thank the countless teachers she’s had the fortune to study with over the years at Darshana, Avalon Yoga, and Yoga is Youthfulness.
In the eight years of teaching, Charina has worked with many populations including young children, teens, elder adults, college athletes, engineers, and expecting and postpartum moms.
Yoga is a very personal journey. The practice resonates with each student in a unique way based on their life experience and constitution. In the tradition that Charina’s studied, she believes in teaching the student, not the pose. Physical postures are just one component of the vast practice of Yoga. Yoga works deeply with each individual in a nourishing and empowering way when applied with the right intention and knowledge. This is the main philosophy in Charina’s approach to teaching.
When Charina is not on the mat, you can find her spending quality time and snuggles with her family, soaking up the sun in the great outdoors, experimenting with recipes in the kitchen, or off on a travel adventure.