The one of a kind, free spirited Erica Schommer is our instructor of the month for March! Erica is down to earth and approachable, very knowledgeable and is sure to challenge you to try something new and different in her classes. Find her at M.Power Sunday mornings at 10:30am!
What led you to become a yoga instructor?
When I decided to go through yoga teacher training, I had just graduated with my Masters, and thought I could use what I learned in mental health therapy. Within the first week, that one perspective grew into so much more. It became a personal journey to seek understanding, well-being, and peace through the philosophical and physical aspects of yoga. I realized that the therapeutic applications of yoga could be for everyone, whether through therapy or through sweaty, flowing, sequences.
What yoga posture challenges you the most right now?
My most challenging pose changes practice to practice, sometimes week to week, and definitely month to month. I find that there are poses that I may not have found challenging one week, but then the following week, I struggle to find my breath. There are days where all I need is to feel grounded, which makes balancing postures such as Half Moon (Ardha Chandrasana) difficult to hold. Lately, poses that involve stretching my knees like Lotus (Padmasana) and Reclined Hero Pose (Supta Virasana) have been hard for me, both physically and mentally.
What is your favorite thing about teaching?
The connection I see my students make on their own between their practice and themselves. It could be in that third Sun Salutation that I see a student close their eyes and simply listen to their breath. Or it may be at the end of class where I see a person’s face soften and relax. Each class brings in new energy, but also leaves the room with a different energy. It’s a humbling experience to see this change in individuals and then the class as a collective. I think this is what makes a yoga community so distinct; how the subtle mind-body exchanges within a single student impacts the class as a whole and vice-versa. We all become both students and teachers that inspire one another.
Where would you most like to travel, and why?
Thailand has been on my destination list since I had one. There is something elusive and beautiful about the culture and landscapes that I am drawn to.
Outside of teaching, what do you like to do for fun?
Live music, or just loud music in my car or shower. Dancing with friends. Outdoors activities (skiing, hiking, camping, kayaking). Hula hooping. Eating sushi or Italian food is also fun for me.
What is one thing about you that most people don’t know?
Not sure if many people know that I love to paint. Mostly landscapes. I’m really excited about my next project: to paint a ukulele and then a guitar.