This particular form of ‘flying yoga’ began in California, although the knowledge that there are health benefits to reversing blood flow by standing on one’s head (inversion) has been around for centuries. In modern times, Iyengar Yoga, well known for its use of props and blocks to aid alignment, also uses ropes to support practitioners in an upside-down posture. It was while studying Iyengar Yoga in India years ago that Trixie was introduced to this practice and experienced its benefits.
Like many other practitioners and instructors, Trixie was initially drawn to yoga in an attempt to deal with chronic neck and back pain, in her case caused by spinal injuries. Inversion provided her relief that she had never before experienced. Unfortunately, though, the ropes at Iyengar were uncomfortable and, as well, Trixie became bored just hanging upside down.
It wasn’t until a trip to California a few years ago that she saw what she had long been looking for: “A simple, user- friendly, safe and comfortable strap design that would support an interesting series of postures.” She put her teaching skills to use and developed what is now a renowned program that incorporates the new mechanism. The Flying Yogi was born.
Trixie’s passion didn’t allow to her to rest on her laurels, however. She needed a studio environment unique enough to match the beauty of the new yoga. Although she knew the high-ceilinged loft-like space she had fallen in love with would need extensive renovation, she could see its potential immediately. “It was absolutely perfect,” she recalls. And the transformation began.
Today, The Flying Yogi studio looks nothing like the series of offices the building once housed. Trixie’s intent was to provide the feeling of a sanctuary from the moment visitors enter the space – and she has certainly accomplished that. Beautiful antique wooden doors frame cork floors that have been laid throughout, so the only sound from below is the soft padding of feet. Meditative music and soft lighting combine to provide a temple-like quiet. The empty straps, resembling sleeping cranes, hang from the studio’s ceiling between classes, adding to the mystic atmosphere.
“Like participants in an aerial ballet, class members move through a series of defined exercises, strengthening their core and toning their muscles.”
For classes, email Trixie at www.theflyingyogi.ca, call 647-993-YOGI (9644) or drop by the studio at 007-245 Carlaw Ave., between Queen and Dundas.