ABOUT SHAILA

Founder, YogaHotDish (North Oaks, Minnesota)
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YEARS OF TEACHING
Trained in the Good Ol' Days
Shaila attended yoga teacher training in residence at Kripalu Yoga Center for Health, Stockbridge, MA in 2001. This was back when the Yoga Alliance required immersion in a residential program for yoga teacher training certification. No cell phones allowed, and no coffee! Collegial in atmosphere, a large staff of full-time teachers was ready to guide you, tell you the truth and kick you in the backside.
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DIFFERENT DISCIPLINES
A Globally Informed Yoga Style

Shaila first studied yoga and meditation while living in Singapore and Japan. Kripalu, Sivananda, and Iyengar influences somehow get thrown together in a Santa Barbara secret sauce. Sprinkle in modern best practices to ensure safety along with the latest research and you get a slow-cooked…HotDish. YogaHotDish is currently served in North Oaks, Arden Hills and Falcon Heights, Minnesota to anyone curious enough to show up!

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STUDENTS MAXIMUM
Small Classes for Better Practice

With class sizes topping out around 12,  you’ll be surrounded by the same committed people every week, so you’ll grow together, in true community. Newsflash: classes with a revolving door of drop-ins and teachers don’t progress. They give the illusion of mastery through repetitive sequences, but you really don’t understand the concepts and how to apply them more broadly.

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WOO-WOO YOGA
Down to Earth Yoga

Shaila isn’t a Buddhist or a Hindu, just a St. Olaf Grad with Lutheran roots who started studying yoga and meditation while living in Asia.  She then trained with leading teachers in California and Massachusetts — and knows how to throw a Hot Dish together! You won’t find any chanting or new-age assumptions about energy, chakras or astrology. What you will find is peace, quiet and clarity. 

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The Yoga HotDish recipe is an eclectic blend of classical yoga and modern best practices.

No cutting corners: no quickie classes, dumbing it down or new-aging it up. You will "confront the quiet" and "move into stillness" for a work-in that will have you more relaxed from day-one so a calmer, more mindful you can shine through.

Kusumoto1-e1431104761117.jpg

The Yoga HotDish recipe is an eclectic blend of classical yoga and modern best practices.

No cutting corners: no quickie classes, dumbing it down, new-aging it up, or converting you to Hinduism.

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The Detailed hotdish recipe

A sprinkle of this, a heaping of that...

One Part Kripalu

I chose Kripalu for my yoga teacher training as it was the best blend of East and West: a school of lineage with roots back to India, under the capable leadership of Stephen Cope, a former therapist and author of Yoga and the Quest for the True Self. It was also close to our home on Cape Cod. Kripalu had dispensed with unhealthy guru worship (along with the guru) and phased out devotional Hinduism to become secular. Known as the “Yoga of Transformation,” it’s a place to Get Real with 6″ of closet space, bunk beds, and all things yoga from 6 am to 10 pm.

Another Part Sivananda

My first yoga teacher in Singapore was a Zen Buddhist who did her yoga teacher training in India. She was down-to-business and always wore the same uniform: white polo shirt and blue track pants. She told me it would take 10 years for my collegiate tennis-tortured hamstrings to stretch out in 1999, and she was right! “If you can’t have a flexible body, then have a flexible mind"--and that was even before all the yoga brain research! She also taught me the importance of headstand and how to approach it safely, in spite of a whiplash injury.

A Dash of Santa Barbara Creativity

Santa Barbara has long been an incubator of amazing, eclectic Indie yoga. There I was able to study with local legends like Eddie Ellner in his one-of-a-kind sacred space known as Yoga Soup. I stumbled into trainings with yoga thought leaders and renowned teachers, including: Bob Cooley, Cora Wen, Heather Tiddens, Cheri Clampett, Tara Gold, and Paul Grilley,

A Heap of Modern Anatomy

Modern anatomy yoga teacher training with with Paul Grilley, Leslie Kaminoff, as well as Kripalu’s doctors-on-staff have led me to realize there’s no one path to the perfect pose. While knowing “universal alignment principles,” is a start, it can only take you so far; and, if applied dogmatically, can lead to injury. In fact, there are a lot of yoga poses out there that certain body types should avoid altogether. Let's not sacrifice joint health for ego and aesthetics. Gymnastics is hardly a "lifetime" sport, so make sure you're doing actual yoga, not gymnastics!

A Rich Zen “Sauce”

In 1989, I found myself at the Ryoanji Temple in Kyoto mesmerized by snowflakes. When I returned to Japan in the mid 90’s to manage a software company, I befriended an elderly woman who spoke no English. Once we exhausted the limits of my Japanese for the day, we often sat in silence, eyes closed, be it in a garden or on the train. Simple acts of eating food, drinking tea and strolling the nearby “samurai garden” were done with total focus and awareness, in silence. I realize now that all of these were meditation experiences, yielding a level of peace I only re-discovered when I found yoga in Singapore.

This recipe is gluten-free, but will stick to your ribs. Gimmick-free without the new-age music and mirrors that detract from true meditation. No microwaved, “hot yoga” served here — the heat is supposed to come from within and build gradually, as not to harm your joints and muscles. No pressure to sport Lululemon or tie-dye for that matter (unless you want to); and please, no Speedos!

Are you ready?

Why limit yourslelf to one style of yoga when you can have a curated collection of best practices across a variety of schools and instructors over 20 years and 3 continents?

Choose your adventure...