The Ashtanga Role Models of the Future: Live from Tokyo


Welcome to Tokyo!

Lisa Hill – a contributor to AshtangaNews through her many great Ashtanga photos from Chicago, Illinois – is teaching at Tokyo Yoga for three months, and kindly shared her blog, yoga and adventures in tokyo, and photos at Bindifry on Flickr with us.

What struck me about Lisa’s blog – and if you like Japan at all, you will really enjoy reading about her daily adventures living there – is the similarity between what she says about Ashtanga students in Japan, which echoed what Govinda Kai said in his post, Vision of Yoga in Japan. From Lisa:



what i absolutely loved about teaching in this studio was the dedication of the students & their gratitude towards me. every single student was serious, but not too serious (not obsessed). beautiful practices indeed and all completely traditional. there aren’t even any props in the studio to tempt them out of tradition! i am so inspired by this studio that i am going to find a way to do the same thing when i get back to chicago. the owner of the studio is doing all the right things with the right intention & it’s completely inspiring to me. there’s nothing like it at home, and soon there will be!

…i am probably working too hard-adjusting too much. it’s not like the students expect adjustments, they don’t at all. it’s just so cool to be teaching in a room where everyone, no matter what the level, works their butts off, and says “arigato” afterwards loud & clear before leaving the room, much like the greeting you get when entering a sushi bar. it’s just so cool & refreshing. i believe the japanese can be the astanga role models of the future. we have much to learn from them.


Mysore class at Tokyo Yoga

From Govinda:

I have been impressed with the yoga students here in Japan. More than anywhere else I have taught, there is a natural humility and a deep respect for whoever is teaching…This quality makes the process of learning very special, both for the student and for the teacher.

Additionally, I have been impressed by the level of dedication, passion and work ethic that is present in a large number of Japanese yoga students…It is clear to me that the deepest levels of yearning for the fruits of yoga practice (truth, expansion and liberation) are very high.


Lisa and Mindy,
who introduced her to Tokyo Yoga

Stay tuned; more to come…Lisa’s agreed to do an interview with some of the Ashtangis from Tokyo Yoga, and we are looking forward to it.

so if you like new york, you will love tokyo. its the same, only it’s japan. – yoga and adventures in tokyo

She even spied a Hello Kitty yoga mat bag! 🙂

Have any of you practiced Ashtanga in Japan? Please comment!

9 thoughts on “The Ashtanga Role Models of the Future: Live from Tokyo

  1. Scott Meredith

    >Have any of you practiced Ashtanga in Japan? Please comment!

    Since it is asked, yes I practiced Ashtanga in Japan, doing private lessons from Harakuma Sensei. He was IENAI HODO awesomely great teacher, and I will try more lessons from him this year when possible.

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