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#ODDlight Feature – Amy McGuire

It’s Amy in the ODDlight! This babe has been rocking our worlds for about 2 years at One Down Dog. An important fitness oriented element and a woman who makes a point to learn everyone’s name. Smart, silly, and so damn strong – check her out!

Name: Amy McGuire

Nick Name: Mac

Hometown: Dumas Texas, Farmtown Oklahoma, Tempe AZ, Pasadena Ca haha

Favorite Place: In the sky or in the water

Favorite color: Orange

What’s your sign? Leo

Most embarrassing moment? Too many to have a most; they are just too frequent and my brain has waaaaay too much stuff going on up there to index that info.

When you aren’t at the studio where can you be found (favorite past time)? Skydiving!

How do you define yoga? I don’t think I do.

Why do you teach? I teach because people need the reminder of movement, peace, to pull away from the dog and pony show we live in daily.

What brought you to become an instructor? An injury. Yoga saved me from surgery and nasty scars.

What is your favorite song to play in class? Whichever one makes me cry or dance that week.

What is your favorite pose or flow? Why? I love a lotus mudra flow. It’s expressive, expanding and breathable.

Memorable yoga moment? Falling over in a wide-legged forward fold into a wall where I was then pinned during a public class.

How did you first hear about One Down Dog? Several of my co-teachers taught/teach there and I had to check it out.

What is your favorite yogi prop or piece to wear or use? (favorite mala etc) Aromatics! Gimme smoke, gimme oils!

What was the last book you read? The Luck Factor

Do you dream? Lucid dream? I dream a lot! Many of them seem real, which can be a good or bad thing given the subject matter!

If YOU were a color what color would you be? I am a color and it is YOU.

#ODDlight Feature: Caitlin Randolph

Each month we feature a member of the #ODDfam. Caitlin is OG ODD – The first work trade person, part of the second teacher training ever, and has been on the mat, at the desk, and teaching classes for 5 years of O.D.D.  She’s responsible for every caption you read and every post you like as our Social Media Manager.

Name: Caitlin Randolph

 

Nick Name: Red is about the most common one. Ducky calls me Ging’

 

Hometown: Reno Nevada – well, technically Sparks if you know the area.

 

Favorite Place: Outside.

Favorite color: I think its changing! It was purple for years. Now I’m thinking green!

What’s your sign? Taurus. (My birthday is May 18th!)

Most embarrassing moment? 

This happened this year and I thought “now I have an embarrassing moment to share”. I was at a big show for First Aid Kit. They always do an acapella part, they were excited to try it in a bigger amphitheater. I decided to record part of it, I did it in instagram stories. The feature automatically replays what was shot… AND I COULDNT GET IT TO STOP! I turned off the volume, I closed the app, and it still played!!! It was probably only 10 seconds of breaking the quiet acapella to hear me replay the acapella, but it was enough time for faces to look at me and SHHHHH me. I never record anything in app now (come to my social media workshop). My date for the show doesnt even remember this happening. Telling how we view embarassing moments.

Oh also, one time in high school a bagel came flying down the hallway and bounced off of my forehead onto my friends head. Not sure if it was aimed at me, but I remember it!

 

Fun Fact most wouldn’t know about you?

I went to burning man for the first time when I was 17, my dad came too. I went for 12 years in a row after that. I’ve been acting since pre-school, my grandpa was a local stage actor.

Im in the purple.

Share a story or anecdote with us – something magical, changing, funny, or adventurous. Something that you love to tell. 

I manifested my dog. I wanted a corgi with a little bit longer legs and a tail. BAM. I found Arrow on a facebook group called “pembrokes with tails”. I was obsessed with finding an undocked corgi. I saw some dude post pictures of baby tailed corgis. I messaged him what turned out to be an hour before the adoption papers were due. Out of 100+ people across the USA applying for this litter of puppies, I was picked to get my first dog. These were all people who helped donate to this corgi dude who rescued a pregnant corgi. So if you look up #WillasAngels, Arrow is kind of a big deal in the corgi facebook community. Part of the adoption agreement was to update in a facebook group.

 

 

When you aren’t at the studio where can you be found (favorite past time)? Probably cuddling or walking Arrow. Camping? Camping is my favorite and it also includes cuddling and walking Arrow.

 

 

How do you define yoga? A metaphor. The metaphor changes as you change. Lately it’s been “Flowing through it” sometimes its literal “to yolk, to bring together”.

 

Why do you teach? To be more connected. Friends and people are actually pretty challenging for me. I only managed to stick with yoga once it became a community and lifestyle rather than a class I have to get to.

 

What brought you to become an instructor? I kept finding myself in class wanting to make suggestions to other students – not in their alignment, but in how they can be kinder to themselves. Grabbing blocks even if I didnt need them, so somebody near me would get the kinesthetic response to do the same. To remind the tiny girl and the big dude that she may be able to fold in half but chaturangas may be hard for her yet his arms are burning holding those big arms up, they both have strengths in the diverse practice. I felt like I could reach those who didnt think yoga was the most accessible. When I was super broke and before I found ODD I started making playlists to measure how long to do yoga for. 20 minute playslists for a home practice. I realized other people might want to hear my playlists and do my flow’s too.

What is your favorite song to play in class? Balance by Future Islands

What is your favorite pose or flow? Why? Dragon/Lizard – Utthan Pristhasana. It feels both strong and flexible.

Memorable yoga moment? MY FIRST YOGA CLASS WAS A BLESSING! My aunt was a teacher back home. I went to her class in highschool and at the end of the first class ever a man with a long white pony tail took the slowest roll down from shoulder stand…. farting loudly and proudly the entire time. Couldn’t have asked for a better intro.

 

How did you first hear about One Down Dog? Jessica was the Liza (manager) of a studio in Studio City. I did work trade there – cleaned for classes. When Jessica left there I kept in touch, went to one of her pop up classes in a cafe, I was the only one who came that day. When she opened ODD at the first location I got in touch to see if she did work trade. It was so new the system was “here are fliers, please tell people and come to class.”

 

What is your favorite yogi prop or piece to wear or use? (favorite mala etc) I’ve been really enjoying stones and malas for every day all day – it keeps me feeling grounded and the reminder of where to keep my head.  I love 2 blocks, but I didnt learn yoga using them!

If you could have any super power what would it be? to create clean water.

What was the last book you read? The Goddess Pose about Indra Devi – currently. Last finished: Slaughterhouse Five.

What special causes or non-profits do you hold dear to your heart? Queens Best Stumpy Dog Rescue. I’ve been following this one woman build this place up over the past 4 years. She can tell you first hand, corgi’s are assholes. – http://www.queensbeststumpydogrescue.org/ 

Are there any links, @names, and #hashtags you would you like us to use in promoting you and your happenings?

Find me as @caitran (cait ran is simply caitlin randolph shortened)  Twitter, instagram, facebook.

AND NOW I HAVE A ‘YOGA ACCOUNT’ – Follow @DoshaDiets for the Ayurvedic Perspective.

Come to my Sattvic Social Media Workshop! We’ll flip the perspective and conversation to a positive sustainable one about internet use, get some tips for branding, and make some photos! Saturday May 5th – 2-4pm

 

#ODDLight: Kim Ritley (The Yogi Doula)

As we head into month TWO of this crazy year called 2018, the ODDFam is so pleased to bring another teacher feature to the blog. In light (*wink wink*) of her upcoming prenatal partner workshop, we’re spending some time getting to know Mrs. Ritley aka The Yogi Doula.

Don’t worry, for those of you who read this interview and think, “Oh my goodness, this woman is so wonderful, I would love to take class with her but I’m not having a baby in the foreseeable future,” don’t fret. Outside of PRENATAL, you can soak up Kim’s yogic offerings in CHILL and FLOW in Silverlake.

Happy reading!

Name: Kim (Neer) Ritley
Nick Name: Kimmy, Kimmie, Womps

Hometown: Bainbridge, OH

Favorite Place: national parks and gardens, or any place with a lot of trees

Favorite color: blue and green

What’s your sign? Aries

Most embarrassing moment? I think I just forget them right away, because I have never been able to answer this question.

Most empowering moment? Once I climbed to the top of a really steep snow covered volcano in Chile. I had to wear crampons and I was really bad at it (like the weakest link in the group for sure) and I wanted to quit so many times, and really didn’t believe I would make it I’m pretty sure the leader of the group I was in didn’t think I would make it (at one point he literally tied me to his waist). But after 5 hours of one step at a time I got to the top and the view was incredible and it felt so good to do something that I didn’t actually believe I could do. Sometimes I feel weak but when I remember that I climbed to the top of a volcano I feel kind of badass.

Fun Fact most wouldn’t know about you? I never burp, it seems to be physically impossible for me.

Fun Fact most wouldn’t know about you? I’m really good at untangling knots.

Fun Fact most wouldn’t know about you? Once I volunteered for 2 months at an orphanage in Peru and got really good at changing cloth diaper with pins. And I got good at riding in buses that I was too tall to stand up straight in, so I mastered the perfect amount of hunch. I am tall in Peru.

Share a story or anecdote with us – something magical, changing, funny, or adventurous. Once I was in the middle of Wisconsin driving to a friend’s wedding with a few other friends, and during a break at a rest stop I did a handstand against a tree because it felt good. While I was upside down, I heard a woman, utterly perplexed ask one of my friends “What is she doing???” and he said “Who knows, she’s from California.” And that answer seemed to satisfy her.

When you aren’t at the studio where can you be found (favorite past time)? Working with pregnant and birthing women and new moms. Petting a dog. Or getting a spur of the moment tattoo.

How do you define yoga? Connecting mind and body to the present moment.

Why do you teach? I process and understand so much about myself, my habits, and my experience on my mat. Yoga has helped me cope with the innate challenges of being a life. And it helps me feel better in this body I’m living in. I teach to share that with others. To teach body awareness. To help others feel good in their bodies and in the present moment. And mostly just to share this tool that has been useful to me time and time again for many years.

What brought you to become an instructor? In my mid-twenties I spent a year traveling around South America, and that year I was constantly shifting and meeting new people. Sometimes I would feel very lonely and restless and unsure of who I was, having to reintroduce myself all the time. I started do a little bit of yoga every day, and then it became habit. At the same time, my mom was going through challenging health issues and I sent her a yoga book. She started getting into it and immediately began down a road of healing. At some point during the year, I got the idea in my head that I should be a yoga teacher. And sometimes when I get an idea, I follow through.

What is your favorite song to play in class? For some reason I like playing covers of Drake songs. There are a lot of good ones out there.

What is your favorite pose or flow? Why? I love hamstring stretches the most, specifically down dog, uttanasana or any standing forward fold really, and supine hamstring stretches with a strap. I just always feel better after stretching my legs, and I get a good release in my back. It’s a simple restart for me.

Memorable yoga moment? When I was a new teacher I volunteer taught a class at a shelter for survivors of domestic violence and one day I taught supported bridge with a block and as soon as the block was in place, one of the women basically shouted with joy and pleasure, freaking out about how that was the best she had ever felt in her body in years and it was a really big deal because she was not only a survivor of physical and emotional abuse but also an addict and this one simple body shape made her feel incredible and it brought tears to my eyes. I realized yoga can be so powerful in so many different ways, sometimes in the simplest ways.

How did you first hear about One Down Dog? I actually first heard about ODD before it existed, because I worked the desk at Yoga Blend, the studio Jessica did her 300 hour teacher training at, and I heard her talking about it a lot during their breaks (this makes me seems like a stalker because we did not know each other then). Then I heard about it again because my friend Sam was friends with Caitlin who was working the desk and he told me about it for a reason I now forget. Then again when Jess got pregnant and wanted a prenatal teacher and my friend Courtney told me to show up to one of Jess’ classes and tell her I was a prenatal teacher and Courtney’s friend. And now here we are.

What is your favorite yogi prop or piece to wear or use?  I love using blocks in my classes and in my practice. They can just be useful in so many ways, and for me can often deepen an experience.

What special causes or non-profits do you hold dear to your heart? (We will want to be more non-profits and would love to do so on your behalf) I am one of the directors of the LA Doula Project, we provide free birth doulas and abortion and fetal loss support to families in LA. We also have a teen mom program.

Would you more likely tell your boss they had food in their teeth or let it slide? Let it slide. For some reason I hate when people point out that I have something in my teeth, it actually makes me feel kind of angry.

Are there any links, @names, and #hashtags you would you like us to use in promoting you and your happenings? @theyogidoula

(And don’t forget about her Prenatal Partner Workshop happening this Saturday February 10th!

Anything else? (feel free to add literally anything!) My current dream for my future family is to have a small dog, a big dog, a hairless cat, chickens, maybe a goat or two, and two human children. And to be living in Oregon, specifically Eugene. My husband is totally on board.

And now for the Quickfire Challenge! 

If you could have any super power what would it be? Teleport

What was the last book you read? The Red Tent

Do you dream? Lucid dream? I wish, I usually forget my dreams.

Who or What is your spirit animal? elephants

If YOU were a color what color would you be? turquoise

#ODDlight Feature: Ayurvedic Clinician Eleni Tsikrikas

Every month One Down Dog finds an #ODDlight feature for you all to learn about. Meet Eleni Tsikrikas – your local Ayurvedic Clinician who teaches our teachers, consults us privately, and opens the doors to self care in the form of yoga’s sister science. The natural medicine of Ayurveda.

Intro to Ayurveda and making teas starts October 20th & 27th!

Part 2: November 3rd & 10th

 

Name: Eleni
Hometown: Los Angeles and Sydney Australia

Favorite color: Blue
What’s your sign?: Pisces
Most embarrassing moment? 
Recently I was in Athens, Greece, feeling very relaxed and happy. Went to dinner with my husband as usual we ordered too much food, so we took the rest in a doggy bag. On the way home, we decided to give the food away. I approached a man I thought was homeless and offered him the food. The man became angry and told me he was not homeless and how dare I assume…….. I was sooooo embarrassed and felt so stupid and ……………..remembered an old saying…….Never assume, it makes an ass out of you and me
Most empowering moment? When I finally got it that life doesnt happen to me, its an inside job……“life emanates from me”
Fun Fact most wouldn’t know about you?
I love to knit and do needle point
Fun Fact most wouldn’t know about you?
I love reading other worldly books.  Outlander, Harry Potter series

Fun Fact most wouldn’t know about you?
Love to laugh, right now rewatching  “Will and Grace” series

Share a story or anecdote with us – something magical, changing, funny, or adventurous. Something that you love to tell.
I had the most magical experience last Month in Greece. I was in a small town of Koroni, sight seeing with some friends.   I lost my purse ( with cash, credit cards, drivers license and green card) yikes!!!! Reported it to the local police, looked around, cancelled my credit cards, called the embassy……it was a mess
and it meant that we had to cut the holiday short and get to the US Embassy in Athens to sort me out for reentry into the US.
A few hours later, I was sipping tea on our balcony going through my emails. I received a message from Chris, a Greek man, living in New York, whose Mom lived in Koroni ( the town I lost my wallet. She found my purse on the steps of her store, when he happened to call her from the US.  You still with me.
He asked her to go through my wallet, he got my name, found me on line, emailed me in Greece…. I called him in New York, he told me his mum had my wallet at her store in Koroni. I drove back to the town, found his mom and my wallet with everything intact.   One of the best experiences Ive had

When you aren’t at the studio where can you be found (favorite past time)?
At my home/studio in Silverlake

How do you define yoga?
The road towards personal transformation
Why do you teach?
Because I want to share this transformational teachings
What brought you to become an instructor?
Curiosity and personal development

What is your favorite song to play in class?
I love Cafe Del Mar Dreams series

What is your favorite pose or flow? Why?
My own practice
Memorable yoga moment?
When I quit smoking cigarettes 15 years ago. I learnt from studying the yoga sutras, that the mind is a habit making machine. I took responsibility for my actions, changed my habit, practiced it consistently and consciously until it wasn’t a problem. Very freeing for me.


How did you first hear about One Down Dog?
I met Jessica in a class

What is your favorite yogi prop or piece to wear or use? (favorite mala etc)
None

What special causes or non-profits do you hold dear to your heart?
Greenpeace, KCRW,

#ODDlight Feature: Jeff Van Ness

Name: Jeff Van Ness

Nick Name: Jeff Van Ness

Hometown: Miami

Favorite Place: I can acclimate to most places so I have too many favorites ~ really, any place where I can sit and think without boundaries. I can be near an ocean, someplace exotic, near my family, anywhere ~ if there is space for my thoughts to move around I’m a happy guy.

Favorite color: Lets say gray. and if thats not good, how about blue? And why not a third? Green!

What’s your sign? Sagittarius

Most embarrassing moment? GEEZ! I’ll try to be brief, this took place when instant messaging was a thing. There was a girl from high school that I’d been after for a while and one night after some outing I took her home where we sat in my car listening to music ~ it was the kind of scene where If i’d had more courageous I would’ve tried to kiss her. I didn’t though, but I did notice that one of the buttons on her blouse was undone and I, foolishly, took it to be some strategy on her part to alert me that she was into me! It’s really stupid logic, but it seemed spot on at the time. Seeking encouragement from my friends when I got home, I wrote a long message retelling what happened in the car with the blouse, the whole thing. When I finished I quickly hit enter and it quickly appeared in the IM box. The conversation with my pals was pretty active so when I didn’t get a response I knew something was wrong and a second later I realized what had happened and proceeded to deal with that sinking feeling you feel when you’re embarrassed and stuck. I had sent HER the message with our story. Everything worked out alright, no real harm done ~ and the real plus is that THIS is my most embarrassing moment.

Most empowering moment? First thing that comes to mind: I used to give tours of the Universal backlot in spanish. It was a performers sort of job. Though I can do it fine, the performers hat isn’t a comfortable one for me ~ my first week giving tours was rough and on one tour I messed up a lot, but I realized that people got a kick out of it, and not in a “laughing at me” sort of way. People were supportive and they wanted me to do well they wanted me to be myself. A lot of the people on that tram were experiencing the attraction for the 100th time so when I’d lose the scripted stuff I’d get their attention. When I was up there just being me, thats what they wanted to see. That and Jaws and King Kong and the other stuff.

Fun Fact most wouldn’t know about you? I used to be a fat kid. For real, a pretty heavy kid, 220 lbs. And I had a diet that supported that sort of weight. Cheeses, pizzas, mayonnaise, ranch, french fries, fast food ~ I wasn’t shy about enjoying all that stuff ~

Jeff, this is what happens when you dont send us photos… we turn to facebook.

Fun Fact most wouldn’t know about you? I know a lot about cars. But not cool cars. I can’t tell you too much about an awesome BMW or a Tesla, but if you want to know the horsepower, or how many lbs of torque you’d get out of a sensible Honda Accord I’m your guy

Fun Fact most wouldn’t know about you? I think about music a lot, I’m constantly humming in my head or whistling or I’ll sing to my son (and he’ll sing back)

Share a story or anecdote with us – something magical, changing, funny, or adventurous. Something that you love to tell.

This anecdote is a fresh one that no one, but me, really cares about. My family is Cuban, I am of Cuban descent, first generation American. Growing up, I distinctly remember a black and white image of the home that my grandparents left behind in 1962, it was a two story kind of L shaped home that stood by itself on what appeared to be a hill. I could describe it perfectly. For the past couple of years. Since relations with Cuba have improved several of my friends and family have gone to Cuba, I am jealous every time I learn of someones trip. Not because I am into seeing the sights, I don’t care about that, I want to find this house. My cousin recently went, he tried to find the house but couldn’t. 

A few weeks ago a buddy of mine came back, I had known of his trip and encouraged him to look up a few AirBnB properties that I knew were well kept. Sometime between then and now I thought, why wouldn’t my families house be an AirBnB? I started my search, but couldn’t find anything ~ I searched google images of the town (an unincorporated area of east Havana), as many as I could find, but nothing. I scanned 3,000 hash tagged images, but couldn’t find anything that resembled the house. No two homes look alike. I was on Youtube watching videos from the town but couldn’t find it. A few days later I asked my Mom to send me a scanned image of the house; and I don’t know what it was about that image but my first search led me to the house immediately, which is in fact an AirBnB. 

So expect me to request a few sub dates as I will be staying there soon. 

When you aren’t at the studio where can you be found (favorite past time)?

Oh, Im really into my family, I love love love my wife, my kid, my brother who lives nearby ~ so day trips with one or all of those mentioned; we’ve got memberships at every museum in town, maybe there. I’ve lately been doing hikes from a book called Secret Stairs. Its cool enough, a USC professor mapped out hikes connecting stairs all over the city. Finding new stuff to eat. New stuff to cook. Lots of stuff with the baby. There’s NOTHING more inspiring/enlightening than experiencing the world with an infant. It brings out the best in people, in strangers, and in me. 

How do you define yoga? referring to a physical practice, its a tool that should help you develop awareness, encouragement, and compassion (in that order).

Why do you teach? Because its hard and because I can. I get anxious before I teach so its an obstacle that I enjoy overcoming. It doesn’t really get easier so I enjoy the spontaneity that comes from each group of students. Its also a great thing to share with people; I don’t actively give to charity and I don’t want to compare the two, they’re different. But I do hope that sharing things that I think are interesting or unique or hard will be valuable to people.

What brought you to become an instructor?

An ashtanga teacher who’s class I took a few times approached me and told me that I’d be a teacher. So a few years later I became a teacher. 

What is your favorite song to play in class?

At the moment theres a live version of Sam Cooke’s “Bring it on home to me” thats got the best intro, the best a lot of stuff that I can think of right now. I love playing that. 

What is your favorite pose or flow? Why?

1/2 moon. Its the sort of pose that feels stretchy and long even when all of your muscles are turned on. 

Memorable yoga moment?

Too many. I always get a kick out of being able to do stuff that I didn’t think possible ~ with the right instruction so much is possible. 

How did you first hear about One Down Dog?

I got a message on FB just before the SL location opened asking to connect. I wasn’t able to at the time but was excited to now 4 years later!

What is your favorite yogi prop or piece to wear or use? (favorite mala etc)

Nah, I haven’t got stuff like that. I do love a good foam roller and would love to lead a class wherein we use foam rollers before and or after strenuous sequences. hint hint. 

What special causes or non-profits do you hold dear to your heart?

Nothing specific. There are occasionally causes I send some money to, Standing Sioux for instance during the standing rock stand off ~ besides being vehemently opposed to inequality ~ I really want people to be informed. I spend a lot of time watching, what I think is, great reporting ~ there is a really great information out there, and not far either. The more you know the more informed your choices will be and the better those choices will be.