Carrie Owerko has been teaching yoga and exploring the relationship between body, breath, and mind for many years. She is a Senior Level Certified Iyengar teacher (CIYT), a Certified Yoga Therapist (C-IAYT), and a Functional Range Conditioning Mobility Specialist (FRCms).
Before studying yoga, Carrie earned a BFA in Dance and Theater and graduated from the renowned Neighborhood Playhouse Theater School in NYC.
Women Fitness got an opportunity to closely interact with Carrie Owerko, Senior Iyengar Yoga Instructor and founder of The Playground: Virtual global communities of movement optimists. Read on…
You have been a mover, dancer, and athlete throughout your life. Please describe your early journey as a yoga practitioner.
I began studying yoga when I was working as a performer in an experimental movement theater company in NYC. I began practicing at home after my first class, as the daily self-practice was what I was looking for. There was not a lot of yoga in NYC at that time, and I tried a few different studios and ended up taking classes at The Jivamukti School in the East Village. One of the teachers there suggested I try Iyengar Yoga, as I often had many questions about the poses and movements. I started studying Iyengar yoga in earnest soon after.
I continued my Iyengar yoga practice after leaving the theater company when I went back to school to study movement analysis at The Laban Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies in New York. My yoga practice continued through my movement analysis studies and was very much informed by what I was learning at The Laban Institute.
Though I was very dedicated to the Iyengar method for many years–decades, in fact–there were things that I felt were missing in my practice. For instance, I missed the somatic practices of the Laban/Bartenieff work, which was more of a process of inquiry as opposed to a method that was imposed on the body. I also felt that my yoga practice lacked the types of variable movements that I experienced in dance and that are important for moving well in many other activities and in life. I missed the regular cardiovascular and strength and conditioning training which was, unfortunately, discouraged within the Iyengar system.
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