We are blessed to inhabit the most beautiful vessels on Earth: our bodies. And doubly blessed through evolution and consciousness to harness the energy of very powerful operating systems: our minds. To operate with good self-efficacy and to live optimally, there needs to be synergy between the body and mind. The body, mind, brain and spirit need to journey toward functioning in ‘comm-union’. This union or yoking is the practice of yoga. Asanas (physical postures), pranayama (breath practices) and meditation (calming practices) are integral tools to discovering the one’s true nature, the Self.
Svadhyaya = is the Sanskrit word for self-reflection and observation. As you practice yoga and svadhyaya, the light, the dark and the ugly will surface. Your ego will come into the picture, you’ll discover habitual stories, shadows, and no doubt, there will be instances throughout the process that you don’t like what you uncover. By way of a dedicated practice, time and with supportive teachers (yourself included!), one step at a time, you peel back the layers (yes, just like an onion). You unfold. You change. You transform. Honor your discoveries and contemplations….they are your truth.
To guide asana practices that ease tension held within the body and relieve physical trauma due to injury, stress or lifelong wear-and-tear. To transform the physical body from an instrument of holding stress to one of vitality.
To incorporate pranayama and breath practices as powerful tools in providing relaxation, lowering heart rate and blood pressure, focusing the mind, and providing the connection between the physical and mental.
To honor meditation as a gateway practice to stress reduction, better moods, a more empowered state of being, and release from suffering about the ‘stuff’ that doesn’t serve our well-being.
To serve my students and clients by meeting them ‘where they are’ and celebrating these present states of being. To support them void of ego and judgment on their journey of yoga, contemplation and discovery.
Heather Hested – owner
I AM a child of the ’70s and love all things groovy. Maybe, that’s one reason why I’m drawn to yoga and meditation as tools to help find a personal groove in life that makes this time here the sweetest it can possibly be. Yoga asana, pranayama and meditation help me build a solid foundation to meet and flow with the demands, burdens and stresses of daily life. Here are 7 questions and the answers that tell a bit more about me:
1. What brought me to yoga:
The simultaneous feelings of stillness and vitality experienced on the mat keep me coming back day after day. Teaching yoga is sharing the process of self-discovery and healing with others. Yoga can be very physical with pretzel-like postures (asanas). But, there’s much more to the deep dive. Come practice with me and let’s begin to reveal the power of connection, awareness and transformation that yoga is. BTW, we’ll practice in a way that has you sticking with this until you’re 108yrs.
2. Favorite yoga book:
The Art of Happiness by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Simple steps but, oh so, hard to practice day in and day out. When we let go, even for one breath cycle, one pause and truly, surrender to each moment, there is a lightness and a liberation amongst the body and mind and the feelings can be such sweet joy.
3. What feeds my soul:
Being with loved ones, dancing, sunlight, travel, entertaining in my home, art in any form, the beach, looking out at the water whether it’s a lake, river or ocean, connection, imagination and possibility.
4. Favorite guilty pleasure:
Banya 5, vegan peanut butter chocolate chip cookies from PCC and admittedly, the Real Housewives of New York.
5. Who and what influences my teaching:
The young at heart, my yoga teachers including: Theresa Elliott and Kathyrn Payne of Pacific Yoga, Denise Bentinez of Seattle Yoga Arts, and activist yogis like Seane Corn for her voice and Off the Mat organization. Children and anyone who volunteers their time to help others also inspire me. Our existence is about connection and service to one another. I strive to teach a practice that allows students to find their most loving selves both on and off the mat.
6. What’s on my yoga playlist:
Depends on the day and my mood. PS: The request line is always open!
7. Favorite quotes:
” Wonder is the beginning of wisdom.” – Socrates
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain