Alexandria Crow is a yoga teacher based in Los Angeles, CA who is visiting Seattle on October 23, 2015 for a weekend workshop at Om Culture. We took this opportunity to learn more about her journey and her yoga teaching. Here is our interview with her:

SYN: Who is Alexandria Crow & who has influenced her teaching?

Alexandria Crow: Who am I?  This question gave me a good chuckle, I appreciate it!  Well in yogic terms, I am nothing but pure spirit although my little ego has lots to say about who I am as I’m many things as a personality.  I guess my two biggest are that I am a seeker of experiential knowledge and a rebel.  I am a seeker of experiential knowledge so that I know the underlying reasons for everything I make the choice to do or say in my life. Having this deep understanding of what’s going on allows me to rebel against all the ‘shoulds’  that don’t align with me.  These two combine to allow me the courage to speak my truth no matter how scary that is sometimes.

My teacher, James Brown, influenced me a huge amount as he taught me to constantly question and discern. Outside of him, my boyfriend has been a huge influence on me. He’s a body worker and healer and he has encouraged me to more vocally share my views on the healing nature of a yoga practice. It is meant to heal your connection to body, mind and self, and is often times doing quite the opposite for students because of the fast-paced classes and heavy lean towards the fancy, gymnastics-like poses.  He’s helped me slow down and simplify a lot.

SYN: How has your background as a competitive gymnast influenced your yoga journey?

Alexandria Crow: Being a gymnast taught me a lot of things, discipline, courage, dedication, strength, flexibility, acting in the moment, just to name a few. Those are all incredibly helpful tools as a yogi because they’re very closely aligned to the same things taught in the Sutras. Also as a gymnast, you learn things in a very methodical way, a way that at first is slow moving but as the muscles in your body begin to learn the pattern it then becomes instinctual and can happen at an incredibly fast pace. It’s kind of similar to how yogis rewire their brains as they begin to practice.  Slowly, little by little you train your brain in a new way, to see things in a way that harms you less and as that pathway gets more deeply rooted, you suffer less. Knowing that has helped me do the hard work to reformat my harmful patterns for more positive ones.

SYN: What is your favorite thing about being a yoga teacher?

Alexandria Crow: Seeing the ‘mind blown’ moment in my students. That moment where everything they’ve ever thought gets flipped upside down and shaken up, and they realize that they are in a place of new beginnings. It’s incredible to see students take that moment to go from doing what they’ve been told to a place of beginning to self inquire as to what works for them.

SYN: What do your students typically love the most about your teaching?

Alexandria Crow: The detail and the depth of information I try to share – that and my weirdness and jokes. I’m a strange bird who tries to be entertaining and informative.

SYN: Your upcoming weekend workshop in Seattle include a variety of modules: yoga philosophy, anatomy, sequencing…what part of the workshop are you most excited about and why?

Alexandria Crow: Honestly, all of it, but if I have to pick just one I’d say the philosophy portion. It’s the only reason I teach asana after all.  Understanding the philosophy changed my life, the asana was just a vehicle and to be honest it wasn’t until I got really hurt and couldn’t practice asana anymore that my yoga practice truly began. I always aim to deliver the philosophy in a practical and clear way without any fluff so that students can go home and at least apply some of it to their lives.

SYN: Anything else you’d like to share with the Seattle yoga community?

Alexandria Crow: I’m really excited to be coming up there. I haven’t been to Seattle but once for all of an hour, so I’m thrilled to explore the city and its students. It’s also so close to the Canadian border and being Canadian there’s something I love about almost brushing up against the place I was born and raised. Oh…..and I hope it rains a lot and it’s cold. I miss those things living in Southern California.

[Photo by Jasper Johal]

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