About.jpg

About

 

Student, teacher. 
Artist of many mediums.
Child of the world.

Tess started practicing in high school and officially teaching after a decade of devoted study. Her teaching is largely informed from the Ashtanga Vinyasa and Iyengar Yoga traditions with additional influence from Forrest, Kundalini, and Bhakti Yoga. Tess was drawn to Santa Fe largely to study with Tias and Surya Little at Prajna Yoga and has since fallen in love with the desert—the harmony necessary where all struggle to thrive.

As a teacher, Tess tasks herself with inspiring and lovingly challenging her students. She curates a dynamic yet restorative practice and tailors the experience for each individual—beginner to advanced. She’s learned from her own practice that the more she pays attention to her physical form, the more she deepens her awareness of the subtle bodies. Thus, she focuses on detailed alignment as well as the actions within the asana that draw the student deep within.

Having immersed herself in a variety of professions, from printmaking to painting conservation to engineering, Tess sees the root of inspiration as the courage to change. She grows through her exchange with the world—by inviting the external inwards and her internal landscape outwards on each breath. She hopes her students will use the practice as a way to practice life.

Yoga cannot be practiced blindly—it must be continually adapted. Like the moon, women are cyclical in nature and thus need to change their practices to support physical, emotional, and mental well-being. Tess devotes much of her study to how yoga can bolster women’s health and thus adapts her teaching accordingly, both in the classroom and in private sessions.

 

 

INFLUENCERS

GEETA IYENGAR
Much of Geeta’s work was dedicated to the field of women’s yoga—she was a pioneer in adapting the yogic practice for women. While I did not have the opportunity to study with Geeta directly, my studies stem largely from the resources she and her students created:

TIAS AND SURYA LITTLE—PRAJNA YOGA
The word prajna in Sanskrit means insight, deep understanding, and mindfulness. It suggests a dynamic, embodied wisdom that permeates every cell and every tissue in the body. I discovered Tias Little’s teachings from his book Yoga of the Subtle Body and was immediately captivated by the interweave of metaphor, science, myth, and felt experience. Rather spontaneously, I signed up for the full 200-Hr program and shortly thereafter moved to Santa Fe. I am grateful for the opportunity to support Tias and Surya’s business (as well as the Prajna Yoga sangha) and to dive ever-deeper into my studies.

EUNICE LAUREL
Eunice is a yoga teacher based in London, largely informed by the Ashtanga Vinyasa lineage. I was blessed to study with her at Pineapple Dance Studios during my years abroad. Her lived experience as a female, a mother, a minority, and a survivor have formed her firm belief that yoga should be an inclusive discipline that transcends barriers of physical ability, economics, religion, and cultural and gender identity. Her program, Movement for Healing, is a grass roots program dedicated to supporting female survivors of gender-based violence through a yoga framework that is sensitive to a woman’s lived reality. 

APRIL MCMURTRY
April is the founder of THE MOON IS MY CALENDAR and creatress of the New Moon Calendar Journal, a beautifully simple tool for women to connect with their physical, emotional, and creative selves within the context of the phases of the moon. I stumbled upon April’s journal while I was leading a women’s circle in Portland—her format made daily journaling accessible to an over-scheduled life and helped me see my monthly patterns with clarity and relief.