About Jen

I teach mindful yoga classes to private groups and individuals and Basics/Beginners at Black Dog Yoga in Los Angeles.

My aim as a teacher is to combine mindful movement with breath so that you connect to your body, and leave feeling refreshed, calm and centered. The practice is not about trying to fit our bodies into a shape to look like the perfect yogi; it’s about feeling our way into our body to experience more awareness and even ease in our bodies and our lives.

I am experienced working with students new to yoga and those who have an established practice, as well as those with an injury who need more focused movement. Because everyone starts from a different place, I offer options to take your practice softer or stronger so that you are moving mindfully and safely.

“When carving stone, the sculptor removes everything that is not the statue. …The art of revealing beauty lies in removing what conceals it. So, too, Patanjali [in the Yoga Sutras] tells us that wholeness exists within us. Our work is to chisel away at everything that is not essence, not Self.” – Judith Hanson Lasater, Living Your Yoga

My philosophy 

As Judith Hanson Lasater says so beautifully in the quote above, the practice of yoga is at its heart about connecting with yourself, of getting comfortable in your own skin and letting go of all those falsities we put on to try to fit in, to try to be “enough” so that we see that we already are enough. The physical yoga practice offers a path to that place through the body and the breath.

Far from being an escape from life, yoga is finding stillness within the waves, peace within the stress of the everyday, our own inner strength to be present and take on the challenges that come with life and that have the potential to open us up to living even larger, fuller lives.

My training and background

I am a Yoga Alliance-certified 500-hour teacher. I took my first yoga class in 2000 when I was working as an entertainment journalist, anxious to make deadlines and exhausted from sitting long hours in front of a computer. I never would have expected then how yoga would slowly soften my cynical nature and open up my life, leading me in a completely new direction. After a brief move to Paris, I ended up returning to Los Angeles and changing career paths completely to share this practice that has been so transformational in my life with others.

My teaching has been influenced by so many who have been like street lights on a foggy California night allowing me to see my next step along my path. I have so much gratitude for each one of them. My most influential teachers include Sigrid Matthews, Maria Christina Jimenez, and anatomy teacher Leslie Kaminoff, who each in their own way have guided me to feel my body and what was going on in my body and to move from that place. I’ve also been inspired by the yoga lineage of Krishnamacharya and his son TKV Desikachar and continue to be influenced by master teachers in yoga and mind-body studies, including Gil Hedley, Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen, Sally Kempton, Tara Brach, among others. My study of yoga philosophy (the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and Tantra philosophy) and positive psychology with Joy Stone also informs my teaching.