Live In Joy Teacher Spotlight - Shelly Schneider
From the Beginning
Where are you from and/or where do you live?
Originally from North Jersey, moved to Cherry Hill age 12. Have moved to Florida twice but ended up in Voorhees.
When and/or how did you find yoga? Was there anything memorable about taking your very first class, or about your first teacher?
A disintegrating marriage was slowly destroying me. I was teaching Aerobics at the local gym (Ballys and then L A Fitness) when a Master Class of Yoga was being offered by none other than Lisa (OBrien). I found something to help me heal.
When did you decide to become a yoga teacher yourself?
I was also teaching classes at another local gym. When they lost their yoga teacher, they asked me to step in. I knew I needed more training. I was afraid someone could get hurt if I didn’t know what I was doing.
What level of training do you have?
200 Hr training through Lourdes Wellness Center. 300 hr training in Ashtanga and Sanskrit through Trishula Yoga Center. Also certified in Integrated Restoration Yoga Nidra (iRest) through Richard Miller. In June 2019 attended Yoga Therapy Conference. Currently enrolled in Eden Energy Medicine (EEM) training to be completed March 2021.
Have you found yourself drawn to a specific type of yoga? If so, what about this type of yoga draws you in?
I began with Vinyasa Flow. Then graduated to more Yoga therapy focusing on posture and alignment and was able to repair imbalances since childhood.
I personally have a modified Ashtanga practice that I do most every morning. It continues to be a challenge while utilizing a wide variety of stretching postures.
What are your favorite go-to poses? The poses you could do every day, all day?
Twists, twists and more twists. I almost daily practice handstand and have finally (6 years later) success!
Are there specific times you practice certain poses? For example: First thing in the morning, I
Almost every morning I wake at 5:30, pranayama meditation for 30 minutes where I chant the Gayatri Mantra and then perform a modified First series of Ashtanga yoga.
What are some of the challenges you have faced? In training to become a yoga teacher. In being a yoga student. In teaching yoga.
My own healing has occurred along the way. A slow approach to dealing with the layers of trauma to prepare be so that I was ready to deal with and heal. A forever student. So much to learn! Not enough time! I have had the immense pleasure of studying with some well known Yogis - Leslie Kaminoff. (author of Yoga Anatomy) and the gentle giant Max Strom, twice (author of There is no app for. happiness). In addition, I have studied with Bessel von der Kolk, a trauma specialist who. authored “The Body Keeps the Score”.
Do you have a favorite book that you have incorporated into your classes, or that has helped you expand your own personal practice?
Have always liked the book Yoga as Medicine by Tim McCall. Another valuable one is The Complete Yoga Book by James Hewitt.
Why do you teach yoga?
I have transformed through yoga and I feel amazing. I want others to experience the same.
What do you like new students not only to your class, but to yoga in general, to know? What advice do you give to those starting out?
Leave the ego at the door. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else. It is called practice for a reason.
We Want to Know
Do you have a favorite quote/ saying/ affirmation/ mantra? Or one of each of those?
Life is a journey, not a destination.
I am happy, healthy, whole and healed.
What advice do you give to yourself that you try to follow in your everyday life?
Breathe! Allow and enjoy. Be curious! This is not a dress rehearsal.
Where do you find your inspiration?
According to TCM I am a dominant Wood element. We are always creating, or on to the next thing. I am always needing to learn new things.
Has yoga taken you on a new path recently? Are you learning something new? Expanding in a certain direction?
My most recent EEM instructor has an online training that starts Sunday to help deepen and integrate my understanding of energy medicine. Susan Stone from Montana, Stone Healing
What is energy medicine?
A free universal healing tool! Working with the bodies energy systems in the present moment. Using daily exercises to balance and keep the system running efficiently and effortlessly. Working with the bodies 9 energy systems to maintain health and wellness.
There seem to be a lot of similarities between Traditional Chinese Medicine and Yoga. What is one commonality between the two that you find fascinating?
The 5 elements Water, Wood, Fire, Earth and Metal are a wonderful way to understand the cycle of life. It allows us to understand the dominant qualities, strengths and weaknesses of individuals. Many of the practices focus on the fact that we are self healing. Both focus on the end result of health and wellness.
What draws you to energy medicine?
Energy does not lie. It is natural. No additives or preservatives! No side effects. Tried and true! Western medicine treats illness. Energy medicine promotes health and wellness.
Tell us a little bit about Richard Miller and/or Donna Eden.
I first heard, read about Donna Eden in my 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training in 2005-6. I read the book then but was not ready to receive the information. I needed the past 15 years to prepare for the current teachings. She is an inspiration.
What hobbies/likes do you have that are non-yoga related?
I love my “day” job as a Dermatology Certified Nurse Practitioner. I have four beautiful grandchildren who bring me great joy. I luckily live close to all and usually my time is occupied with them. I have become interested in Crystals and discovering the healing vibrations associated with them. In addition I have recently been studying Tarot Cards, Numerology and Kabbalah - a runaway rabbit hole of information.
I need my nature time usually in the mountains of PA hiking the waterfalls at Rickets Glen or taking time at shore of Cape May, New Jersey.
What's your favorite holiday?
Not sure I have a favorite. Any excuse to get together with family!
Name three of your favorite foods/drinks. Can be from a restaurant, or something you make at home.
1. Green smoothie - most every AM 2. breakfast at any time of day 3. soup
Do you have any pets?
No pets of my own but 5 granddogs!
What is your guilty pleasure?
chocolate! Especially Dark chocolate sea salt caramel.