Since childhood, I’ve been drawn to the process of learning. Unlike some, I enjoyed and thrived in a scholastic mindset. Some of the most influential moments and people in my life coincide with wisdom garnered through “pure imagination” that was incited by rare, brilliant conveyors. ‘Twas my senior high school Enlish teacher that the first of several that displayed the remarkable qualities of an excellent teacher I later strived to instill into my own perspective of pedagogy at the end of my training and certification in 2004-2009 (English Language Arts and Reading, grades 8-12, Texas). However, a timely opportunity provided me a chance for contrast and a window into a dream of teaching more than the particularities of the English language. In 2010-2011, I trained and became certified to teach Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan, and Radiant Child Yoga (the inspiring teacher and writer Shakta Kaur Khalsa).
In 2012, I seized the opportunity to teach yoga to toddlers and their caregivers, and in return found meaningful experience. After teaching children’s yoga for 4+ years in yoga studios and elementary after-school programs, I realized the value the techniques of yoga and mindfulness brought to developing children’s minds, spirits, and hearts. In 2013, while continuing to teach children’s yoga, I set out to find other impactful and specialized work with children of different and more intensive needs. That quest directed me to work in a residential treatment setting for the past 6 years. There, I trained and applied trauma theory to practice to help children heal from the effects of trauma and neglect. Throughout that experience, I endeavored to reflect and model yogic approaches to coping to the children. I’ve also began to teach yoga to the children who reside at the treatment center.
.. I want to share my journey and respond to the psycho-spiritual needs of those engaged in numerous avenues of meaningful work. I strive to help others create the space and practices that foster mindfulness, cooperation, community, and creativity.
Despite the rewarding and transformational aspects of working with children in great need, the sometimes grueling conditions proved to challenge my mental health, and what felt like my very make-up. After a point, it seemed I had nowhere else to turn but to practice, and eventually other therapy services. My attempt to cope with secondary trauma, burn-out, overwhelm, depression, anxiety, and more drove me deeper into the powerful techniques of restorative yoga, Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan, meditation, and mindfulness. Through my practice, research, and professional training and experience I have honed an intelligence for a trauma-informed perspective to teaching Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan and other mindfulness techniques to children of all ages as well as adults.
Breath in Life Yoga is the culmination of this story. The services I offer meet the needs of the other seekers and their families, friend groups, or professional organizations who are working to change the world. I understand the value of these technologies first hand and I have experience sharing them with many. I want to share my journey and respond to the psycho-spiritual needs of those engaged in numerous avenues of meaningful work. I strive to help others create the space and practices that foster mindfulness, cooperation, community, and creativity.
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Maek lives in Austin, TX and has been teaching yoga since 2011.