My very first contact with yoga was thanks to my mother, Sofia, who took up Hatha Yoga in 80′-es, and eventually taught Yoga to students at the boarding school she was teaching at. From age 12, I was helping in her class, showing students how to do some of the poses. While studying the asanas and meeting like minded people, I discovered there are other aspects of yoga through books such as Bhagavad Gita, – the crown jewel among other spiritual treasures originated from India.
Above I am with Guruji, Sri BKS Iyengar and my dear partner, Lilia Toneva – an accomplished Bharat Natyam dancer in Moscow, where she performed for Guruji at the Yoga Journal conference in April 2009.
After graduating school I wanted to meet practicing yogis and off I went to India, and lived and served with the monks at Vani ashram in Vrindavan, an ancient town with over 5000 temples, while studying the Gita, Upanishads and the serving the local people and pilgrims.
Intrigued from this experience, I visited places up in the Himalayas and the southern states and traveled throughout many of India’s diverse regions, discovering the ancient heritage of this culturally rich land with all of it’s raw beauty & diversity. Grand riches of a fortunate few contrasted with poverty of the millions struggling to feed themselves. It was an unforgettable experience for me and enriched my inner world considerably.
Shortly after I moved to Los Angeles, I met Chris Stein, who introduced me to the Iyengar Yoga method which was a transformative experience for me. In 2001, I traveled to Pune and studied with the Iyengar family at world famous RIMY Institute. After a comprehensive 3 years training and apprenticeship with Chris Stein and teacher training with senior teacher Karin O’Bannon, I was certified in the Iyengar method of teaching, which has influenced millions of people around the world.
Iyengar Yoga is known for it’s highly sophisticated, intelligent sequencing and ever-evolving method of using props for enabling an individual to benefit by practicing yoga regardless of their age, health, shape or fitness level. The Iyengar method of teaching is known for it’s widely documented therapeutic effects on medical patients. I am interested in the field of yoga based therapy, and took an intensive training with Elise Miller in 2009 and did a case study course and have experience in teaching yoga for people with scoliosis. I work with students who have scoliosis and other spinal ailments on a regular basis.
My teaching style is methodical; I watch the students in front of me closely, learning the asanas progressing step by step. I continue to improve my practical knowledge by regularly attending workshops and teacher trainings by foremost Yoga teachers around the world. It makes me feel accomplished and is a rewarding when I am able to help my fellow students to gradually advance beyond their perceived limits and succeed in their practice doing what seemed “impossible” just several months ago.
In September of 2016 I was awarded an Intermediate Junior III certificate and am currently enrolled in the 3-year Therapeutic Yoga Teacher training program headed by Manouso Manos, my mentor.
I teach in Los Angeles since 2001 and lead international retreats yearly as well as local workshops and retreats on a regular basis in California. Please see my “retreat/workshop ” page for the upcoming retreats and workshops.
Thank you for visiting!