by Catherine Madsen
Bliss Crafter, Austin Yoga Tree
This week, I have the pleasure of introducing our amazing Anne Marie Herring! Anne Marie is Austin Yoga Tree's Chief Community Lover, which means she is our publicist and works to help spread the word about our studio. In addition, Anne Marie is one of our new yoga teachers! Make sure to catch her vinyasa classes on Fridays at 6am and, starting September 7th, Mondays at 7:30pm. Let's get to know more about Anne Marie!
Tell us about your yoga journey!
I tried yoga for the first time in Panauti Village, Nepal, a town I was visiting to meet with the local shaman. One afternoon, I was photographing an 80-year old shopkeeper down the street from my homestay, and he invited me to join him at the temples the next morning at sunrise. It was a profound experience, and also a reality check, seeing that I was struggling to keep up with an elderly man who somehow had the vigor of an athlete. That was in 2013, and it took about another year before I went to my first yoga class, this time in San Francisco at an all-levels studio. Got my butt kicked again, went home in a bad mood and sat in the shower. That’s when it clicked. I knew I had the strength to overcome my ego’s resentment. Now, another year later, and with a consistent practice, I’m mentally and physically healthier than I’ve ever been.
Why do you practice yoga?
Many reasons, but primarily to cultivate compassion and connect with myself and the community.
What is your pose of the moment and why?
Crow. It’s a way for me to check-in with my focus and strength, as well as to feel inspired by the progress I’ve made since first attempting it.
You just got out of a soulful, sweaty yoga class, what do you do next?
I drink a ton of water and lay on the cold, tiled kitchen floor with the dogs.
What is one thing on your bucket list?
Travel to Peru where I’d like to become fully fluent in Spanish and study healing under the shamans of the Amazon.
What is one goal that you are currently working towards?
Developing a consistent, daily meditation practice. Although all it requires is sitting and breathing, it’s one of the toughest routines for me to adopt.
What is your spirit animal?
A white wolf. Why? I’ll tell you if you ask me in person.
What does the word “mindful” mean to you?
To me, being “mindful” means being aware of my thoughts, words, and actions; taking the role of an observer, and not getting caught in a stream of thought that doesn’t serve my well-being.