EmbodiYoga® Teacher Spotlight: Julee Snyder
When I came to EmbodiYoga® in 1995, it didn’t yet have a name. That wouldn’t happen for another 10 years or so. I came to Lisa’s classes as a dancer in my twenties and at first yoga seemed to me just another choreography. I began with a three-week daily summer intensive at Meredith College that Lisa taught, and what struck me were the side effects. I suddenly had very strong opinions. I laughed spontaneously and boisterously. And I made better self-care choices with little effort. Whatever this practice was, it was working on me in subtle and profound ways.
In 2000 I began the Body-Mind Centering® Practitioner program. And because BMC is so vast in scope with many principles and little form, it was useful to have a practice or form to which to apply everything I’d been learning. I continued taking classes with Lisa, because she was also a BMC practitioner & teacher, with the focus of immersing myself in the principles and language of BMC. For me, my yoga practice, EmbodiYoga®, was always also my BMC practice. I am drawn to it as a pathway towards self-intimacy – a way of attending to myself, a practice in showing up to myself, a baseline for creating mutually supportive relationship in the world. The exact form is an exploration always in flux.
Now that I’ve been practicing and teaching in the field for awhile, I can say that the way EmbodiYoga® differs from other practices out there is its integration of somatics into the consciousness of the teacher. From there it infuses specific principles, verbal cues, and hands-on techniques that bring consciousness into the body as a pathway towards self-knowledge and freedom. By paying attention in a particular way, we awaken specific body tissues with prana and we ride prana through the body into different states of consciousness. And in so doing, we create different possibilities of moment to moment choice which increases our range of expression and opens the possibility of challenging long-held patterns within the body-mind. This choice is a kind of freedom - not from pain and suffering as many hope, but freedom simply to make a different choice and to possibly experience a different outcome. But the true delight, for me, within this practice is simply attending to the beauty of life-force itself as it manifests and unfolds. At the end of the day, what else is there?
Julee Snyder, EmbodiYoga® 500 Hour Teacher, is Program Director of the EmbodiYoga® 200 Hour Teacher Training at EVOLVE Movement in Raleigh, North Carolina. She is also faculty & co-teaches with Lisa Clark for the EmbodiYoga Programs in NC. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org