Casandra Walters began practicing yoga at home when she was 16. Once she enrolled in West Virginia University, she took advantage of the classes offered at the Student Rec Center. However, when a scheduling conflict interfered with those classes, coincidence, and maybe even fate, led her to Inner Life Yoga Studio.
“The first Iyengar yoga class I took had me completely hooked,” she said. “Inner Life immediately had a more powerful effect on my mental and emotional balance. It is definitely a special type of yoga.”
After her first class, Casandra never looked back at any other style. For her, yoga practice serves as both a mental and emotional outlet and regulator. Of course, the adrenaline junkie also values the strict physical discipline associated with the method.
“I feel like other studios let you free-for-all with poses as you try to mimic the poses that you see,” she explained. “But with Iyengar yoga, you actually learn the muscle memory and there is special attention to correct alignment and form.”
Now 25, Casandra graduated from WVU in 2011 with a degree in political science and teaches yoga at a college in Northcentral Pennsylvania. She has a passion for outdoor activities, such as rock climbing, rafting, kayaking and hiking. She attends both Level I/II and Level II/III classes. This, paired with home practice, allows her to relieve any pain or aches related to her adventurous lifestyle.
Casandra developed a desire to teach Iyengar yoga and as a result, she enrolled in the teacher mentoring program at Inner Life Yoga Studio. In addition to doing monthly workshops and teacher training, she observed beginner classes and taught three poses in level one classes in front of the class teacher and was given feedback to incorporate into her teaching. She then moved to Wellsboro, Pennsylvania, where she continued her teacher training under senior Iyengar teacher, Dean Lerner, in State College. She began her own yoga classes at Mansfield University in Mansfield, Pennsylvania, and at Breathing Space Studio in Wellsboro. This year, she has been recommended for taking the introductory Iyengar teacher certification exam.