Kyana Astles – Student Story
A life-long dancer, Kyana Astles starting practising yoga as a cross training method to gain more strength and flexibility. “The more I did it the more I realised there’s a lot more to yoga than just movement,” she said.
While on summer break from her Bachelor of Fine Arts majoring in dance at Ryerson University in Toronto, Kyana decided to enrol in the 200hr Yoga Teacher Training to develop a greater connection to her body and learn more about the practice, history and philosophy of yoga.
“The training was everything I wanted. I feel like I was seeking answers before going and the course really provided. I was dealing with a lot of negative feelings beforehand. Now I have the tools to take care of myself that way I know I need to.”
With a passion for choreography and a background in diverse disciplines of movement practices, Kyana said one of her favourite parts of the course was having the freedom to explore different disciplines of yoga and creating sequences in her own unique style.
“I was really grateful that you gave us the freedom to find our own voices through the practice. It’s helped me in my choreographic process as it cultivates creativity in your work,” she said.
Kyana wants to encourage her future students to trust their bodies to go places they wouldn’t normally go and to find freedom and creativity in the practice.
“Allow yourself to not think for a few moments, be present with your body, the room and the people with you. If you’re thinking about other things, you’re not going to be able to achieve those more challenging poses.”
Kyana said the awareness she gained through the program is invaluable for the upcoming final year of her Bachelor of Fine Arts. “With BFAs you really have to put yourself into your work. It’s not easy to be so vulnerable. Earlier years I was struggling with that a bit.”
Starting this semester, Kyana will also be teaching a movement class at the Ryerson University Athletic centre for people who are just starting to incorporate movement into their lives.
“I’m very grateful that I can incorporate yoga and dance together to help people to recognize their own bodies, experience freedom, build more fitness and movement awareness.”
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