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Teacher of the Month – Aska Yoshizu

Aska is teaching Hatha yoga on Sundays 10:00-11:30 am and Lunch Time yoga 12 – 1 pm on Mondays and Wednesdays.

On Sunday, July 10th 2005, Aska stumbled into YIY for the first time without knowing how it would change her life forever. Being a neither physically active nor religious person, she’d never had even slightest interest in yoga or meditation prior to that day. However, she was in desperate need for something or anything to relieve emotional pains that she was going through at that point. She was considering of psycho counseling but feeling a bit hesitant about this option with financial concerns. Then she found $7 meditation class by Mojdeh as a much affordable option that she could try before spending thousands of dollars for counseling. Meditation was soothing and calming although she had no idea how it worked.

Aska came back to a yoga class at YIY a few days later simply because she had too much time on her hands and also bought a new students pass on her first visit. Just few months and three 10-class packs later, she signed up for the monthly unlimited pass and you could find her at YIY almost everyday and sometime even twice a day ( I bet YIY lost some money over her during that period).

Regular practice of meditation and asana (physical practice of yoga) had shifted something significant yet indescribable deeply within her. Emotional pains, which brought her to YIY, had been slowly yet surely getting washed away one layer after another. Then she started realizing how much her mind (the talkative opinionated voice in her head) was clouding her eyes and hurting herself  psychologically and physically: she suffered from Bulimia throughout her 20s and depression in her early 30s.

This realization of mind-body connection not only led her to self-exploration through studying yoga, meditation, Buddhism not as a religion but as spiritual practice, massage, psychosomatic filed, and Reiki, but also led her to the path to become a yoga/meditation instructor, a massage therapist, and a Reiki practitioner, to share her findings about our inner wisdom with others who are also struggling with their lives just like herself.

In order to assist them to find their mind-body connection, and cultivate deeper self-awareness and self-compassion, Aska invites students to play their own physical and emotional edges, not somebody else’s edges, on the mat in a safe and playful class environment. Then, she keeps reminding them that the most important yogapractice happens off the mat; yoga is all about how to carry and apply what we learn on the mat to our daily life, where we face real challenges.

Aska arrived her home, SF Bay Area, in May of 2000, from a suburb of Osaka and Kobe in Japan, where she was born, raised and lived for the first 28 years of her life with her family. Drawn to Buddhism teachings last several years, she has re-discovered the fact that her paternal grandfather was a lay Buddhist priest. Aska enjoys studying Buddhism from books and lectures by Thich Nhat Hanh, Pema Chödrön, Jack Kornfield.

Aska is registered as a 500 RYT, 200 E-RYT with Yoga Alliance, a Therapeutic Yoga Teacher certified by CheriClampett, a Certified Massage Therapist, a Certified Esalen Massage Practitioner, and a 3rd Degree ReikiPractitioner.

For more info on Aska, please check her website ( and her Facebook page (

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