Seattle Yoga News is on a mission to find and highlight all of the hidden, and maybe not so hidden, gems in the Seattle yoga community and beyond. We want you to learn about their experiences and perspectives, but also a bit more about their personalities, so we have a few fun questions for them. All spotlights are based on your peer’s personal recommendation. First on our list is Enid Spitz.
SYN: What inspired you to become a yoga teacher?
Spitz: I want everyone to feel inspired to live fully! It seems so stereotypical: but I had a transcendent moment in savasana. The casual yoga practice I started as a social hobby after high school classes developed into a physical and mental passion during college; yoga became my “thing.” And when I moved to London, it was my way to explore, finding a class to experience in every city I traveled to. In that transcendent post-savasana moment, sitting cross-legged in a carpeted conference room turned studio, the reality struck that yoga is my lifestyle, all-encompassing and that I want to share that experience. Every day/class/practice since has reaffirmed my passion and my influential teachers (including my 70-year-old Ashtanga mentor who jumps into his headstands) constantly re-inspire me.
SYN: What is one piece of advice you always give your students?
Spitz: Always explore! Stillness can serve us if we’re mindful, but stagnation turns off our brains and bodies. So I always encourage “yogi playtime.”
SYN: Describe your yoga philosophy?
Spitz: My yoga philosophy is “explore.” I believe yoga is a complete integration of body, brain and breath into something bigger than the sum of its parts.
SYN: If you could practice with anyone dead or alive, who would that be and why?
Spitz: I want to practice with my grandpa. Truly practicing with another person is such a close experience and he shaped my life in many ways but never got to see me become an instructor.
SYN: How lucky are you and why?
Spitz: I’m unlucky, or maybe just very clumsy, but infinitely blessed.
SYN: If you could be an animal, a plant or an ingredient, which one would you be and why?
Spitz: My mom’s pet name for me was “little bird,” and I think it’s fitting – I love reveling in open space and enjoying my freedom and voice. But I would like to be basil because it is fresh and grounding and those are the things I most aspire to.
SYN: What is your latest favorite thing about humanity?
Spitz: Our never ending ability to start again, re-explore and regenerate. Even if a pose, place or person gets mundane, there’s always the chance for change. (The invention of microwaves are a close second as my new addiction is Trader Joe’s instant popcorn!)
SYN: Who would you like to nominate next for the next yoga teacher spotlight?
Spitz: Vanessa Lee Garibaldi
Enid Spitz’s bio:
“After beginning my practice in California, I traveled to Europe and studied at London’s Power Yoga Co. while exploring yoga around Germany, England, Spain, France and Belgium. Back in the States, I completed my 200-hr Yoga Alliance Certification through Portland’s NW CorePower Yoga and have since graduated their Extensions Program, Level two and YogaSculpt trainings. I continually attend workshops and trainings (including Leslie Kaminoff’s anatomy training, intensives with Brian Kest and master classes with Ana Forrest) and I am currently working toward a 500-hr YA certification. Some of my most influential teachers include Tiffany Cruikshank, Jennifer Chiemingo & Liz Doyle in Seattle, Jill Allen in Portland Ore., and Bill Counter of Sacramento Ashtanga.
Classes I teach draw heavily on the Ashtanga and Vinyasa traditions. They include dynamic “flows” with a strong focus on alignment and breath. My goal is always for students to explore in their practice, so I also incorporate traditional themes, pranayama (breath), and many variations.
My passion is connecting neuroscience and yoga, drawing on current psychological research to strengthen the ancient practice and increase understanding on both sides. I lead workshops on the brain/body connection and am working towards a certification in yoga therapy for psychological trauma.”