Meet Your Teacher Sierra Wagner! Her heart-felt intention is to develop her students’ potential and help them to experience greater confidence and contentment. Her particular yoga leaning is toward Therapeutic Yoga, which is for anyone…and for everyone! But in particular, therapeutic yoga can be useful for those working with an injury or managing a health condition. Yoga therapy classes can serve your self-healing and help you do yoga safely. We are happy to share more about Sierra and her life both on and off the mat.
What inspired you to become a yoga instructor?
I started taking Iyengar yoga classes at 13 and by 18 my mentor and teacher was encouraging me to teach, because I was fascinated with the possibility of healing myself and others with the tools. I love yoga and couldn’t imagine a better thing to do with my life.
Which teachers have influenced you?
What does your yoga practice look like? How has it shaped your life?
Most days I spend about 20-30 minutes with yoga, myofascial release self massage and other forms of physical therapy and 20-30 minutes with meditation. I also go to a sangha to meditate about once a week.
I consider my volunteer work an essential part of my practice. I volunteer as an assistant specialized yoga classes, as well as for a non-profit based food distribution program.
I am also practicing my yoga everyday when I cultivate mindfulness in my relationship to myself and others.
Over time, my practice has changed a lot. I include much more of my life in my practice now than I used to. It can’t be separated from the daily life. It has grown steadily from not having a home practice at all for the first 10 years of my journey, into a steady home practice. I didn’t meditate much until I took my first yoga teacher training with Katchie Ananda, who is also a dharma teacher. These practices were also more sporadic for me at first but has since become a daily habit. I have devoted more time to meditating in times of grief or transition, and have found it so helpful.
Tell us about your yoga-related everyday habits.
I’ve started doing more meditation and restorative yoga at night instead of watching TV. Mornings almost always consist of a green smoothie.
What is your favorite thing about being a teacher?
It is the shift I see in my students, and sometimes even myself, from the beginning of class to the end. . . from tension to relaxation, and dis-ease to ease.
What is something you wish your students knew?
The right way to do yoga is what makes sense to you. A teacher is there to assist you not tell you what to do. You must honor yourself over any instruction.
There are so many other things I would like my students to know, so I bring themes into my classes to help continue their expanding awareness.
What are some favorite non-yoga activities that are on your rader?
My friends and family are very important to me and I make sure to spend time with my community and support those around me whom I love. I enjoy traveling in nature, like going for hikes in the wilderness, riding my bike and feeling the wind while I’m on my scooter. My sangha is an important commitment that I prioritize. I also love dancing, hiking, giving and receiving Thai massage, and riding my bike.
What wellness books or podcasts can you recommend?
Food For Thought Podcast
Light On Yoga by BKS Iyengar
The Places That Scare You and When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chodron
What is your guilty pleasure?
Chocolate by far. . . hands down!
Learn more about Sierra on her website Sierra Laurel Yoga, which includes information about the launch of her newest online program, Yoga for Aging Gracefully.
Please join her for her regularly scheduled public classes at Namaste. Click here to see her schedule and sign up online.