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Meet Diane Ambrosini of Di4Yoga in La Mesa

Today we’d like to introduce you to Diane Ambrosini.

Diane, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I’ve always been a physically active person, and both my undergraduate and graduate degrees are in exercise science. After leaving a position as a Kinesiologist at Children’s Hospital, I started a mobile personal training business and worked at that for a couple of years, until I noticed that I kept signing up for yoga classes as continuing education credits. I began utilizing yogic techniques in my physical training sessions. Then, one day, I realized that I was spending more time focused on the yoga aspect of these sessions, so I figured I should just shift into solely practicing and teaching yoga. So, I shifted my business focus to exclusively yoga teaching once I earned my yoga certification.

After I earned my yoga teaching certificate, I began a collaboration with my yoga mentor who wanted to produce a teaching manual for certification training. She asked for my expertise in exercise science and kinesiology to enhance the knowledge of biomechanics in the teachers-in-training who would utilize the book. This simple teaching manual morphed into the book “Instructing Hatha Yoga” and was published by Human Kinetics Publishing in 2005. The book was a very successful yoga teaching manual throughout the English speaking countries around the world, and in 2015, I updated the content and published the second edition, “Instructing Hatha Yoga: A Guide For Teachers And Students.”

Currently, I teach yoga anatomy and physiology in two yoga teacher training programs; one in La Mesa and the other in Point Loma. “Instructing Hatha Yoga” is one of the teaching manuals used in both programs. I also offer workshops focused on guiding students toward moving through poses in mechanically sound and individually appropriate ways.

I teach weekly group yoga classes at A Gentle Way Yoga Center in La Mesa. Since working there, my style has shifted down from extremely Ashtanga-esque active sequencing to a style that allows each person to practice based on their own physical and emotional needs in any given class. I teach traditional poses with an emphasis on individuality so that each student can find their own personal balance between stability and ease in every pose.

I also teach individual and small group (2-4 people) private yoga and meditation sessions in my home shala (studio space). I typically see individuals seeking relief from musculoskeletal issues and have had a great deal of success in helping them heal, not just their bodies, but their hearts and minds, as well.

I am truly fortunate that a large part of my life’s path is to be of service to so many other seekers – wonderful individuals seeking physical and emotional (re)connection to themselves and others. I know that I gain as much, if not more, from working with them as I believe they have from working with me.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
We have a saying at my house, “Adventures are seldom fun while you’re having them…but you always have a great story afterwards!”

Nothing in life is “smooth”, so I always look at the “less than smooth” parts of life as learning opportunities. (Some days are definitely easier to do this than others!) One of those challenging times in my yoga path was co-owning a yoga studio with my yoga mentor. I found that behind the fun of creating a physical space where healing yoga energies flourish, there is the reality of electricity bills, less-than agreeable landlords, less than agreeable teachers and students… and rent! This was at a time when yoga wasn’t quite as popular as it is now, so the efforts it took to get and keep our yoga clientele were energetically exhausting. It took a toll on my co-owner, who became ill during the time we owned the studio. We sadly had to close the doors.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Di4Yoga story. Tell us more about it.
Di4Yoga is my business name. I am an independent yoga teacher and yoga therapist. I provide one-on-one yoga and (very) small group sessions. These classes are designed for new students, some of whom are new to yoga, who would rather not attend public group classes. I also offer yoga therapy to a large number of individuals looking for sessions to address musculoskeletal issues. These particular clients have need of more focused, individualized healing sessions for both their physical conditions, as well as for their emotional and spiritual healing.

In addition to individualized yoga sessions, I am available to offer yoga for special events. For the past four years, I have been honored to provide yoga and meditation for Spouse Appreciation Day at MCRD. During the summer months, I offer yoga for La Mesa Wine Works’ community events: Wine Down Wednesdays. Additionally, I am more than willing to volunteer my services to charitable organizations.

I’m known for fun, innovative sequencing. One student says she loves coming to my classes because she is always surprised by the fact that I rarely do anything the same way more than once, and she likes that level of spontaneity. My classes are always anatomically sound and I make every effort to afford every student the ability to experience sthira and sukha (stability and ease) in even the most physically challenging poses for them. I incorporate a balance of strengthening and “stretchy” poses. I find it of utmost importance to cue students into, through, and out of poses with deep mindfulness and the least possibility of injury. Each session also incorporates yoga philosophy and mindfulness exercises.

I love my career and I am constantly increasing my knowledge of the vastness of yoga as a lifestyle practice – not only the physical aspects of the discipline – but the deep font of philosophical and mystical teachings that enhance one’s life. Yoga has made me a life-long learner, and I am grateful for that.

I am currently also employed at A Gentle Way Yoga studio – since the beginning of this year. I teach public group yoga classes and am there Mondays and Thursdays.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
“Luck” favors those who are open to opportunity – and I believe all the good things that have come from my personal yoga practice, as well as my yoga business, have been due to me being open to opportunities.

Instructing Hatha Yoga came to be because I was invited to attend a fitness conference and I happened to strike up a conversation with a book publisher, who just happened to be open to publishing a book on how to teach yoga. We made the connection and the book was published.

I continue to increase my knowledge of the human body and spirit, and further my understanding and awareness of the myriad applications of yogic techniques and philosophies. This is an effort that I must put into my work if it is to be successful. And, although I spend a great deal of time learning and practicing the art and science of teaching yoga and applying its techniques as therapeutic modalities, I am always surprised at what opportunities open up for me. I am grateful to all the people who are interested in my work because I feel that we create a symbiotic relationship, by the simple act of connection.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Human Kinetics Publishing

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