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MEMBER SPOTLIGHT – MATTHEW MAZUR

Name: Matthew Mazur

Nickname: Matt or Matteo

Day Job: I am an art teacher at a Montessori magnet school for Dallas ISD

How long have you have been practicing at YS? Since November 2017

What is your favorite YS workshop or class? Power Flow with Katie- her style of teaching has pushed me to grow a lot in my practice. I always leave her class feeling relaxed and energized!

Name one thing you consider yourself to be very good at: I’m really good at drawing and making waffles.

What’s the number one yoga pose you just love to practice? Crow pose- it’s a great grounding pose and I hope it’s building the strength needed in my core to be able to handstand one day.

Why did you start practicing yoga? I hate the gym! I wanted to focus on a workout that could bring me more than just superficial results. After I started yoga, I was addicted to the focused mental side of the practice and the art of being able to remain still and calm under challenging circumstances.

Who inspires you the most and why? Rupaul- I love his pep talks and how he always says to choose love, stay engaged with the moment, and to never listen to your inner saboteur. Rupaul’s best quote- “If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell are you gonna love somebody else?”

What do you just love about YogaSport? The strong sense of community and that the teachers aren’t afraid to let loose and make the classes fun.

What’s your guilty pleasure? Ice Cream!

Furthest city traveled: Athens, Greece

What is one thing we don’t know about you that would surprise us? I am very lucky! I win things all the time like trips and gift cards. I even won a brand new car last year!

MEMBER SPOTLIGHT – ERICH TOMPKINS

Name: Erich Tompkins

How long have you have been practicing at YS? Six months in January

What is your favorite YS workshop or class? Six a.m. Power Yoga – love practicing in the early morning!

Name one thing you consider yourself to be very good at: Software project management, emerging technology

What’s the number one yoga pose you just love to practice? I love working on wheel – enjoy the challenge and the process of improvement

Why did you start practicing yoga? Self-improvement, managing stress and anxiety (from the software jobs of course)

Who inspires you the most and why? Shepard Fairey is my hero for mixing art with activism, which I love – he started Obey Giant and notably designed the Obama “hope” poster

What do you just love about YogaSport? This is a warm, friendly welcoming community that is accessible to anyone who wants to come in, and I love the authenticity of the practice as well as the vigorous workout

What’s your guilty pleasure? Belgian Trappist Ale

Furthest city traveled: Basel, Switzerland

What is one thing we don’t know about you that would surprise us? I got my first job at Microsoft in 1997 before I knew how to use a computer. I learned what a mouse was in the job interview! To get the job, I solved a bunch of complex puzzles and they hired me.

MEMBER SPOTLIGHT – SHEA THIELEMANN

Name: Shea Thielemann

Nickname: My family calls me ‘Shea-Bird’ and coworkers call me ‘Shea-nia’ (both because I like break out in song)

 

Day Job: Licensed Professional Counselor

How long have you have been practicing at YS? 4 months – I attended my first yoga class this August

 

What is your favorite YS workshop or class? I’m still discovering what YS has to offer, but so far I like it all!

 

Name one thing you consider yourself to be very good at: karaoke

What’s the number one yoga pose you just love to practice? half pigeon, my hips crave it now!

Why did you start practicing yoga? to care for myself and my body in light of my profession.

Who inspires you the most and why? I am continually inspired by my siblings. I am quite a bit older than both my brother and sister, but continue to learn from them and feel inspired by watching them walk their own paths. Not to mention, they are both hilarious.

What do you just love about YogaSport? I have appreciated how welcoming the staff has been. I was so intimidated to try yoga for the first time, and have been thankful for how the staff has put my fears to rest.

What’s your guilty pleasure? all shows related to ‘The Bachelor’ franchise

Furthest city traveled: Istanbul, Turkey

What is one thing we don’t know about you that would surprise us? I have lived as an illegal alien.

MEMBER SPOTLIGHT- MEHLA HICKS

Name: Mehla Goodrich, legally changing to Mehla Hicks in the new year (post honeymoon)

Day Job: Fine Jewelry and Watch Specialist at The RealReal

How long have you have been practicing at YS? Almost 2 years part time and 1 year full time

What is your favorite YS workshop or class? Angela’s Saturday morning Empower Flow class

Name one thing you consider yourself to be very good at: Making and designing beautiful objects

What’s the number one yoga pose you just love to practice? Half Moon Pose

Why did you start practicing yoga? I was 16 and my next-door neighbor was really into yoga, I went to class with her

Who inspires you the most and why? Krista Tippett the podcast host of On Being inspires me with her kindness and candid conversations

What do you just love about YogaSport? I love that everyone makes an effort to know your name

What’s your guilty pleasure? Beautifully crafted handbags and well-designed furniture

Furthest city traveled: Marrakech, Morocco…soon to be Hanoi, Vietnam

What is one thing we don’t know about you that would surprise us?

I weave giant sculptural tapestries from recycled bicycle tire inner tube rubber. I design and manufacture custom fine jewelry (www.mehlaatelier.com)

Member Spotlight – April Blackman

Name: April Blackman

Nickname: Prill

Day Job: Personal Fitness and Wellness Trainer

What is your favorite YS workshop or class? I always enjoy whatever class I take at YS!

What are you pretty darn good at? I’m artistic by nature so I love anything creative such as cooking, gardening or
decorating.

What’s the number one yoga pose you just love to practice? I just love Headstand closely followed by Shoulder Stand. They are both magical poses with healing qualities.

Why did you start practicing yoga? I started practicing when I moved to Dallas in 2001 at Yoga Power a Baptiste inspired studio. I had heard about the benefits of yoga and thought I’d just try it and see what the buzz was about. I had no idea it would have such a positive influence in my life.

Who inspires you the most and why? Many people have special qualities that I admire but, I’m most inspired by my two girls because they constantly challenge me to change, evolve and be a stronger version of myself.

What do you just love about YogaSport? There are many qualities I love about YS but a few things that come to mind are the wonderful instructors and the fabulous adjustments. Every teacher is prepared and really present when they step in the room.

What’s your guilty pleasure? I love a good nap!

Furthest city traveled: Holland, for my grandmother’s 90th birthday.

What is one thing we don’t know about you that would surprise us?
I’ve listened to a lot of great music over the years but my 70’s playlists are my fav!

Member Spotlight : Andra King

Camp Ty

 Name: Andra King

 Nickname: Little King and Aundie (my brother’s name for me since he couldn’t pronounce my name  when I was born)

 Day Job: Marketing Coordinator for KDC Real Estate Development & Investments

 How long have you have been practicing at YS? Well, that depends on when you consider what  my start date is. I actually took my beginners class at YogaSport in 2005/2006. I loved it, but didn’t stay  consistent. Several years ago a friend who had actually taken the beginners series with me way back  when, asked if I wanted to do a challenge. I agreed and I am happy to say I haven’t stopped since.

 What is your favorite YS workshop or class? I truly think all the classes and workshops are wonderful. However, the workshop I feel I learned the most from was 40 days. It really brought me to a new level of being present, not only with my practice and discipline, but with my community! Go Team Orange!!!!

 Name one thing you consider yourself to be very good at: I have never been comfortable  boasting about what I am good at, when asked to do this spotlight I cheated and polled a few close to  me. I learned I am good at being very thoughtful and caring to others with my giving nature, hmm is  that even something to be good at??

Meg Coach Patterson

What’s the number one yoga pose you just love to practice? I love to practice crow to tripod (I know that is 2). Crow was the first inversion I accidentally did in Shanna’s class out of the blue one day several years ago. I think it surprised us both when it happened and since then it just reminds me of where I started and how far I’ve come.

TCU Game

Why did you start practicing yoga? To be honest, to lose  weight. I had no idea it would give me so many more gifts.

Who  inspires you the most and why? I have been very blessed to  be surrounded by several who inspire me on a daily basis for their  own reasons, they know who they are. If I had to pick one, I think  I would pick the first person that inspired me when I was very  young, my Dad. The lessons I learned from watching him love  and live by example and then his inspiring spirit when he fell ill,  continue to live within me and inspire me every day.

 Why do you still practice? I love challenging myself and no matter how long or how much I practice, I am challenged every time.

What do you just love about YogaSport? I just love the YogaSport people and community!!! I feel so supported and encouraged every time I am there, it just makes me feel at home.

What’s your guilty pleasure? A good Bone-in Rib eye accompanied by a nice glass of red wine!!

Yoga in the Park

Furthest city traveled: Tokyo, Japan

What is one thing we don’t know about you that would surprise us? Unless you were in 40 days, most don’t know I was an exchange student in Tokyo in High School.

Mac or PC? PC

Member Spotlight : Juan "Mario" Perez-Lomeli

me_parivrtta_utkatasanaName: Juan Mario Perez-Lomeli
Nickname: Mook (Mookie) Has something to do with playing a lot of street basketball and the movie “Do the Right Thing.”

Day Job: Network Engineer at Nippon Telegraph and Telephone of America.

How long have you have been practicing at YS? I’m not sure, but it’s close to 2 years. Been my home studio since the first time I tried it out.

What is your favorite YS workshop or class? Art of assisting is a ton of fun. It’s a great way to get out of your shell and meet interesting people.

Name one thing you consider yourself to be very good at: Dealing with chaotic situations and emergencies. I’d trade that in for being better at planning and preparing, though.

What’s the number one yoga pose you just love to practice? Tolasana (scale pose) float through to chatarunga dandasana is probably my favorite right now but half pigeon is a close second.

Who inspires you the most and why? Mom, without a doubt. She’s a miracle worker and has accomplished so much considering where she came from and all of the obstacles that she’s overcome. I routinely witnessed her change lives and bring hope to undocumented Mexican Nationals dealing with impossible scenarios and dire circumstances.

Why did you start practicing yoga? A pretty girl had a little something to do with that. 2nd date kind of thing. Thanks to her I have a yoga practice and 3 super cats. IMAG0067

Why do you still practice? Each class is a mental and physical challenge as well as an opportunity to grow and get in touch with self. I truly believe it is a bridge to being in touch with my inner being; a way to dissolve the cultural filters that define who it is that I think I am.

What do you just love about YogaSport? It’s a community of great energy and positivity.  All of the instructors bring a unique touch and perspective that make every class arduous yet fresh and fun.

Spill – What’s your guilty pleasure? Oh man. Hmm… Hard to choose one but I’ll go with fantasy football since draft day is approaching. It’s one day every year where my oldest and dearest friends and I all gather to act like children. Christmas day for us, really.

What’s the best dish you can cook? Steak chimichurri or almond crusted chicken strips. The cast iron skillet does all of the work for me, otherwise I have trouble boiling water.

What is one thing we don’t know about you that would surprise us? Played MC Hammer in my ninth grade musical in, of all places, Salt Lake City, UT.

Mac or PC? Linux.

mo_fellasdoug_n_deltron02

 

Member Spotlight: David Brown

with son parker and daughter lindsay

David with son, Parker and daughter, Lindsay

Name: David Brown

Nickname: Brownie. You can hopefully figure out where that came from.  It is not used very often any more, except by some good childhood friends who gave it to me, and long ago forgot my real name.

Day Job: I am a lawyer at Winstead, PC, a Dallas-based business law firm with about 350 lawyers, and offices in all other major Texas cities, Charlotte, and Washington, D.C.  I have practiced law there for a very long time, and handle primarily commercial, real estate, and insurance related litigation.  Fellow YS yogi Kate Landrum is also a lawyer there, and we were in the same YS beginner class.

How long have you have been practicing at YS? 18 months.

What is your favorite YS workshop or class (and why)? It’s hard to pick a favorite, because I like them all.  The recent Arm Balances and Inversions Workshop is one of my favorites.  Most of the poses covered in that workshop are quite difficult (unless your name is Christopher, of course). I cannot yet do some of them, but I have a long term goal of being able to do all of them.  I’m in to the sustained effort/deferred gratification thing, and found the workshop was very helpful and very well done.   

YogaSport Member, David Brown Photo 2

James (son) and Mint (daughter-in-law), and random elephant walking down the street

Name one thing you consider yourself to be very good at: I think (hope) I am a very good father, which has always been a high priority of mine. I have 3 great “kids,” ages 31, 30, and 22. Though they now live faraway in Thailand, California, and Colorado, I stay in constant contact with them.  Being their dad has been the most difficult thing I have ever done (I have some truly unbelievable stories!), but far and away the most rewarding.  I am now a grandfather (I have a 2½ year old granddaughter who is half Thai and speaks(sort of)/understands 3 languages), and aspire to be good at that too.

What’s the number one yoga pose you just love to practice? I love Crow to Tripod Headstand, when I pull it off.  It requires strength, balance, and patience, and gives me at least a fleeting sense of accomplishment.

Who inspires you the most and why? My kids. I am in awe of the responsible adults they have become, the qualities they demonstrate, the things they have accomplished, and the lives they have built for themselves. I would have bet big against all of that when they were teenagers, but now I feel like I’m not worthy!photo

Why did you start practicing yoga?  A long-time neighborhood friend/running buddy of mine and his wife started doing it and thought I might enjoy it.  They invited me to attend a class with them one Saturday morning at Uptown Yoga.  I went and was instantly hooked because of the way it made me feel, even though I didn’t know the poses and was sort of just flopping around.   I went back the next day and was sure it was something I wanted to start doing regularly, but realized I needed to take a beginner class so I could figure out what all those poses were that the instructor was talking about.  I didn’t know the difference between a Downward Dog and a Headstand.  After some characteristic procrastination, I searched on-line and found the YS beginner class taught by Patrick.  After “passing” the class, I started coming regularly, and haven’t stopped since.

Why do you still practice?  For the stickers, of course!  Just kidding. Yoga is the most complete and exhausting workout I have ever experienced. I love the physical and mental challenges, and the way it makes me feel and think.  There is nothing better for my energy, health, and attitude. It helps satisfy my inner need to do hard things, which I think is essential for positive growth and change, which become more difficult as you get older. Like golf, it’s one of those activities that you can do at pretty much any age.  And as probably the oldest regular YS yogi, I know from experience how difficult, but important, it is to continue to always stay physically and mentally active on a regular basis. Yoga is a great way to do it.  I am committed to doing it regularly for as long as I am physically able.  My only regret is that I didn’t start practicing a long time ago.  As an aside, I’m also very much into the metaphorical  and cathartic aspects of the practice, but that might sound too weird, so I’ll just leave it at that. And I also think it helps my running, but I guess not my tendency to ramble!

What do you just love about YogaSport? The friendly, interesting, funny, smart, open, and diverse group of people who work and practice there.  It is such a warm (no pun intended) and welcoming place, with such a positive vibe. Being a boring lawyer, but for YS, I never would have crossed paths with many of the good friends I have made there. 

Spill – What’s your guilty pleasure? Red wine and chocolate, but not necessarily together.  And I don’t actually feel the least bit guilty about consuming large quantities of either, so maybe that’s not a good answer!

Son Parker and Daughter Lindsay

Son Parker and Daughter Lindsay

What’s the best dish you can cook? Feel free to share a recipe if you like! I am a really bad cook. I do, however, know how to cook a steak properly on the outside grill (turn it only once!).  And one person complimented me once on my quick boiled (yes, not steamed—too much trouble) broccoli.

What is one thing we don’t know about you that would surprise us? I am not and never have been a big baseball fan, but when I was a kid here in Dallas, we lived down the street from baseball legend Mickey Mantle during the last few years he played baseball for the NY Yankees.  I knew him very well and spent a lot of time in his home, because he had 4 boys who I hung around with regularly.  He could not have been nicer to us neighborhood kids, and when he was in town, he played touch football with us almost every day.  And Mrs. Mantle, who was very “country” and sweet as she could be, let us drive her big Cadillac around the neighborhood when we were only 12—seriously!

Mac or PC? Mac. No contest!