Erin sits across from me on the floor, closer than most people I interview. After she finishes teaching her 90 minute Yin yoga class, I encourage her to take a few minutes before diving in to the interview, but she declines. Erin begins her story in a breath and I can feel her calmness and her excitement in one. While I expect her to wait until the rest of the class has left before sharing, she is completely comfortable letting them finish up their own conversations, in their own time, as we speak together. It’s this familiarity and comfort that changes it from a fitness class in a re-purposed martial arts studio, into a home.
A “local” has different meanings to different people in Coronado. However, Erin is about as local as it comes. She started at Sandpiper Preschool, continued on at Village Elementary when they opened it up to second graders, navigated through CMS, and graduated from CHS in 2002 before the incredible renovations we see today.
Growing up, Erin spent much of her time with her mother who was ill. That environment is one of the reasons Erin says that she embraces yoga: to enjoy the other side – wellness. Erin has been teaching yoga for six years; she became certified at Mosaic studio in Golden Hills, completed Core Power’s training, and has dedicated her time to learning about all variations of yoga. Now that she is settling down in her practice she is focusing on Vinyasa and Yin yoga.
Coronado is spotted with yoga studios and Pilates classes, but Erin saw a market for something a bit different. Erin visualizes bringing to Coronado yoga that is accessible to all: levels, ages, even kids and teens if they are open to it. She says, “I want to bring that sense of community and inclusiveness that I felt growing up in Coronado.” That inclusiveness is obvious in her current classes in Coronado. Within the group you see men and women, college students, professionals, and a mature crowd. The inclusiveness in levels is also apparent. Kelly, a Boston Marathon runner, shares her experience, “I enjoy that Erin’s Yin class challenges me to increase my mobility while not being too hard on my body.” The current class already has fifteen participants just six weeks after Erin moved her practice to Coronado.
After joining in a class, it’s easy to see why. Erin sets up with a couple candles and music, and releases calming scents throughout the practice. To match the calming environment, Erin keeps her own voice level throughout. Yin class focuses on keeping the same position from three minutes to up to 10 minutes. At one point I considered breaking out of pose and it was as if Erin could read my mind. “It’s hard for me to do Yin at home.” she admits. “But in class when I feel this community, and I know we are all doing this together, it helps hold me accountable.” These quiet reassurances help bring the group together and drum up the strength even in tough positions. Moments like these are why Erin enjoys teaching, the most rewarding part is feeling like, “maybe I would help, I hope.”
With her business partner, Erin is opening a studio called “Yoga on C” by the end of 2019. She shared, “We chose the name because it’s on C Avenue and on Coronado. The location is 176 C Avenue and it is currently under construction. It will be a full service boutique yoga studio with numerous class offerings and multiple instructors. We have a special of 50% of the first month, no contract. So, I am offering that NOW for people who start taking classes with me at the dojo or who just want to pre-pay so to speak to reserve that rate.”
Erin currently teaches yoga at the Martial Arts America Dojo, 1005 C Avenue on Fridays with Vinyasa at 5:45 pm; and on Sundays: Vinyasa at 3:30 pm and Yin at 5pm. To join a class, call 833-YogaOnC.
Be sure to also check her out on Instagram @erinayresyoga