Join Dr. Michele on the Body Wisdom Podcast as she interviews guest Bernie Clark, discussing all aspects of Yin Yoga and Yoga Anatomy.
Bernie has been traveling the yogic path for over 35 years, starting with a daily meditation practice that he established in his mid-twenties in order to deal with stress in his business career. In his early forties, he was introduced into the physical practices of yoga through Hatha yoga, which assisted him greatly in his meditation practice.
He has a degree in physics and spent 30 years as a senior executive in the high tech, space industry, but he also continued to feed his intense curiosity about psychology, mythology, anatomy and philosophy, which culminated in his writing several books about yoga, mythology and anatomy. Today, Bernie is a yoga teacher and edutainer, offering teacher trainings and workshops in Vancouver, Canada. He continues to write books and maintain his website YinYoga.com.
Bernie Clark is one of the world’s leading trainers of Yin Yoga and the author a several books – The Complete Guide to Yin Yoga and most recently Your Body – Your Yoga. We discuss Bernie’s transition from working in a fast-paced corporate company to teaching yoga relatively late in life. He shares his wisdom of Yin yoga and meditation, how to teach students to practice according to their own body, and the skillful means in which teachers can facilitate this.
Topics Covered on today’s show:
- As a yin yogi myself, I’ve read your books and followed your career for a while now so this interview is very special to me. Thank you again for agreeing to come on the show.
- Can we hear your STORY of how you came to love yin yoga and transition into a yin yoga career.
- For the listeners who don’t know what the difference is between yin yoga and other forms of yoga such as vinyasa or even restorative, can you tell us a little bit about the differences?
- Here are two things you may not know about me yet:
- Although I am a foot and ankle surgeon and Ayurvedic health coach, I majored in anatomy and physiology at UCB. So anatomy is one of my favorite things to talk about.
- I’m a student and more recently an assistant teacher of Joe Barnett, who is a senior student of Paul Grilley, and in their teachings and trainings we discuss anatomy for hours.
- So I would love to have a discussion with you about anatomy and why it’s so important in the study of yoga, both in yoga teacher trainings and in regular classes at yoga studios…because I think we have all been instructed by teachers that our foot isn’t in “perfect alignment” etc.
- Another thing that we have in common is that we both really found yoga in our early 40’s so I think we should talk a little about why yoga really is for every one, every body type, and all ages. I often hear things like “I can’t do yoga, I’m not flexible enough.” Can you speak on that a little and tell us how you respond when a potential student says that to you. Maybe we can touch on the “fuzz” or the connective tissue or fascia here as well and why this is so important for people to understand.
- Can you tell us about your latest book “Your Body, Your Yoga” and why a book like this is so important, especially for yoga teachers?
- Can you tell us a little about your personal yoga practice, what times of day do you find it most beneficial for a yang practice vs a yin practice? And does it matter that much? Do you recommend it for others or do recommend people do what feels best for their body?
- I would love to take a training or at least a class with you someday. If I make it up to Vancouver, I will definitely sign up! For others who want to train with you or take a class, can you let them know where to find you? And also let us know WHAT IS NEXT for Bernie Clark? Your new book or anything else we can look forward to?
Notable Bernie Clark Quotes:
“God doesn’t keep a list of who can do a deep forward fold.” – Bernie Clark
“…that’s what we’re trying to in yoga, just become healthy- not super flexible.” – Bernie Clark
“In a yang pose, we engage the muscles and stretch them. In the yin practice, we relax the muscles; we aim our intention into the joints and the deep tissues wrapping them, not the more superficial tissues of the muscles or skin.” – Bernie Clark
Books Written by Bernie Clark:
Contact Information and Important Links for Bernie Clark:
Contact Information and Important Links for Dr. Michele:
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