Welcome to Yoganjali

Yoga is much more than making shapes on a mat. It is about seeking, exploring, and finding a connection within and out.

Yoga is a multi-dimensional practice with the potential to enrich our lives in every way and should be made accessible to everyone. It can be profoundly transformative, helping lead lives of balance, self-awareness, clarity, and joy. The practice on the mat can help us reveal who we are off the mat.

I discovered yoga after undergoing surgery for early-stage breast cancer. By the end of my first class, I was in love! The experience gave me an intimate connection with my body, which needed healing from within. 

I knew that this practice would be in my life forever and truly started my journey. After completing the 200-hours Yoga Teacher Training at Mind Body Zone, my goal of helping others overcome health challenges brought me to an apprenticeship with my teacher and mentor: Lorien Neargarder, who taught "Yoga for Cancer Survivors and Patients" at the Stanford Cancer Care Program. After completing the 500-hours Yoga Teacher Training at Breathe Together with Jennifer Prugh who has influenced my life deeply, both on and off the mat, I now am on the faculty of teacher training programs, focussing on Yoga Philosophy

My teaching incorporates all that I learn in human anatomy, yoga philosophy, mindfulness practices, and abiding love of Indian classical dance. I teach Yoga Basics for Stanford Cancer Care, Wellness Yoga at Washington Hospital, and Vinyasa Yoga for corporate and private clients in the San Francisco Bay Area.

I believe in “seva” (service): giving back to the community. Volunteering with grass-root level organizations especially for women and participating as a citizen are integral parts of my life. I am a Board Member at HERS Breast Cancer Foundation, a non-profit that serves patients and survivors from all walks of life. 

My intention is to continue sharing what I know, empowering you and me on our paths and learning as long as I live. 

Thank you for reading. Namaste. 

Anjali Rao

 
 
  • Anjali Rao

Of pixie cuts and Asanas

Gamine, I am not. But I have always wanted a pixie cut ever since I saw Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday, perhaps it was her elegant, chic style, cheeky in its innocent seduction. Perhaps it was her face, chiseled and classic with her pert nose or perhaps it was her with Gregory Peck…sigh!!. I was in love with that hair and associated attitude, so I put it on my bucket list. And I got myself one. And I love it and am uncomfortable with it and feel fierce and vulnerable at the same time.

This dichotomous feeling of strength and weakness, of revelation and hidden layers, of movement and stillness, of discovery and comfort is what I enjoy most about Yoga or more aptly my asana practice. Yoga is much more than the asanas we practice though it has become synonymous with each other. Asanas, or body postures is a way of preparing the body for the next five limbs of yoga, including pranayama. The theory being if the body is sick, the mind will be focused on the weakness or pain or aches in the body rather than any other spiritual advancement. Asanas prime the body for more. Period.

B.K.S. Iyengar, the Guru of modern Yoga, describes asanas in a more process oriented definition that resonates with me. He says asanas are not merely postures but they are imbibed with thought and consciousness regarding anatomy and differences in each person’s unique body. How I get into Warrior pose and stay in and get out of it is as integral as the pose itself. I learned that in my teacher training, and I love that concept, it’s the journey that counts, not just the destination!

Asanas not only tone muscles, ligaments  and tissues, but also relaxes the mind, boosts immunity and increases circulation to the organs and glands. I attribute my practice of asanas to increasing strength especially in my upper body. Asanas have challenged my body, I try to hold poses longer, get deeper and take it to the next level. The process of asanas have revealed my vulnerabilities, making my experience raw and honest. One can’t fake it!! The ego is lost when I falter, fall flat, reach out, bend, twist and fail. Some have made me afraid ( handstand….whoa!!) giving me a whole new outlook on gravity and perspective. They have made me confident, given me a high, changed the way I think about my capabilities and driven home the areas where I am weak, exposing my weaknesses  and scars to the world outside and  more importantly myself. Next on my bucket list is an unassisted handstand and for a girl who couldn’t open a can after surgery, it’s a big one!! Wish me luck!!

#Teachertraining #ReligionandSpirituality #Asanas #Pranayama #Yoga #Pixiecuts

Upcoming events you don't want to miss!

 

Introducing The Refresh

Daily Self-Care practices @ Work

A self-care workshop designed for the busy professional bringing together ancient Yoga practices to create a self-care plan that works for you. We will create, discuss, and apply specific breathing exercises, simple movements, and mindfulness techniques to cultivate a  sense of well being.

Contact yoganjali@gmail.com for more info and to sign up!

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I'd love to hear from you.

Thanks for your interest in Yoganjali. For more information, feel free to get in touch and I will get back to you soon!

 
 

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