Birthplace: Charlotte, NC
When and how did you start practicing Yoga?
I went to a few yoga classes in college and loved them but really developed a practice about 8 years ago to help cope with a stressful job. Yoga was one of the few things that made me calm and relaxed after a challenging day at work. It made me feel like me again.
How has it helped you ‘off the mat’?
The quick answer is that it cured my road-rage! My yoga practice helps me to accept the difficult and uncomfortable parts of life without losing my happy spirit. I think we’re all innately joyful but it’s easy to get pulled down by hardships. Yoga reminds me that joy and serenity are always a couple of breaths (and perhaps a shift in perspective) away.
When did you decide you wanted to teach Yoga, and where/with whom did you do teacher training?
I completed my 200 hour training with Trace Bonner at Holy Cow Yoga in Charleston, SC in 2010. Yoga was the one thing that kept calling to me. When I finally made the leap to change careers, I thought, “Why not do something that I really love?” Yoga was such a transformative experience for me that I wanted to share it with others.
What styles are you most influenced by in your teaching, and who are your favorite teachers? I’m definitely a hatha teacher. My teacher, Trace, was trained in the Integral yoga style so I lean in that direction as well. I love Cora Wen, who does a lot of restorative yoga. She made me the prop addict I am today!
What are your favorite Yoga-related books or DVDs? Eric Schiffman’s “Yoga: The Spirit and Practice of Moving into Stillness” and “Jivamukti Yoga” by Sharon Gannon and David Life are both fabulous books for explanation of the poses as well as exploring the more spiritual aspects of yoga. I also love “The Book of Awakening” by Mark Nepo- it’s not really a “yoga” book but I find so much inspiration there.
What do you like to do when you’re not doing Yoga?
I love to hang out in the sunshine with my pup, Josie; paint, scout farmers markets for unfamiliar fruits and veggies then learn how to cook them, practice my ukulele, daydream about Italy and plan my next adventure. Wander. Sing. And laugh! I really love laughing.
I love Laura’s classes! Makes me a better yogi!From the Comment Box
I love Laura Hannon’s Friday night Deep stretch Yoga Nidra classes! She brings such a warm and welcoming presence to her class. I just love her! After a long week it is a perfect way to wind down and relax. With all the changes happening in my life I wish she had this class every week!Mary Jo