Teacher Feature: Katherine Oakes Englishman

How would you describe yoga?

Ah! That’s such a beautiful question. For me, I describe yoga as an expression and acknowledgement of being embodied—of having the gift of life.

How did you find your way to yoga?

The short version of the long story is that I came to yoga during the tail end of my years-long recovery from an eating disorder as a teenager. Although I began with Bikram and no longer practice that style of yoga, it resonated with me so deeply and totally shook my world. I knew pretty much from the first year of practicing that I wanted to teach and support others in keeping this channel clear and open.

Who is your primary teacher right now?

Life! Right?! Seriously. Ha, ha. I have three: Omni Kitts-Ferrara, owner of Yoga Mechanics is my friend, mentor and lifelong teacher. I’ve studied with Elena Brower for years and truly value her candor and varied offerings as time goes on. Of course, Genell Huston! I couldn’t feel more blessed to have walked into Lila and soak up Genell’s offerings and joyful approach to yoga. 

What inspires you to keep teaching?

The knowledge that we are always in process, and we are in process together. Yoga deepens and solidifies those bonds; reminding us that we’re not alone. I don’t always think of it as teaching, so much as holding space for each yogi to have our own experience. I’m also really looking forward to being a momma someday and sharing this with my kiddos 🙂

What is your practice like off the mat? How would you say you live your yoga?

There’s definitely a lot of deep breathing happening! Aside from that, I am a professional writer with a focus on the outdoors and sustainability. Writing stories that amplify our ability to see the inherent connection we have to all things is the way in which I practice yoga off the mat.

Do you have a routine or ritualistic way to starting each day?  If so, please describe. 

Yes, I do! Within the first 30 minutes that I’m awake, I get on my mat. I do a little bit of gentle movement, a 10-15 minute mediation, and write down three things to give myself grace for, or let go of, followed by three things that make me feel grateful. It has radically redefined how I approach my days. If I can’t do that, be it travel or general chaos, I take 5 deep, grateful belly breaths in bed. Try it!

What are some non-negotiables you have in your life right now to maintain balance and health in everyday living?

A 10 minute meditation. Time outside in nature. Movement. Good food. Good company. The rest is what it is!

What draws you to the Lila community?

The warm welcome I received from the moment I walked in as a stranger and continue to experience. Now, as both a teacher and student at Lila, I can’t help but notice how earnest this community is—people are here to learn, move, and commune. It’s such an incredible space.

If you would suggest one book to the community to read as an opportunity to deepen their learning on life, yoga, and all things, what would it be?

Oh man, just one?! At the moment, it’s, One Simple Thing by Eddie Stern. He weaves together modern day science with ancient yogic wisdom in such a relatable and poignant way. It’s a really enriching read for someone who wants to bring more yoga into their daily life.

2019-09-05T01:12:51+00:00 September 5th, 2019|Teacher Feature|0 Comments

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