Meet the Teachers

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MELINDA BARSALES

 

Melinda first learned about yoga in the mid-1980s through yoga programs on PBS. She took her first yoga class in 1997 in a space above the flagship Whole Foods in Austin, TX, and was most deeply impacted by the revelation of savasana. In 2001, she moved from Austin to San Francisco, and what began as a way to ward off the chill of the Bay Area later became a dedicated Bikram Yoga practice of almost eight years. Introduced to Vinyasa Krama Yoga by Steven Ross of Eastside Yoga in 2011, she was immediately attracted to the meditative quality of slow movement synchronized with slow Ujjayi breathing. Her practice evolved from being one chiefly driven by achievement (How deep is my backbend?) to one of self discovery (Who am I?).
 

After practicing with Steven, Melinda pursued studies with Srivatsa Ramaswami, the longtime student of Sri T. Krishnamacharya. She completed her 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training with Ramaswami in the summer of 2013 at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, CA, and began teaching yoga later that year.

In the fall of 2015, Melinda spent a transformational week at Kripalu Center for Yoga and Wellness in the Berkshires of Western Massachusetts. There, amidst the saffron and citron hues of autumn, she immersed herself in Restorative Yoga and received a Restorative Therapeutic YTT certificate from Jillian Pransky, the director of Restorative Therapeutic Yoga teacher training for YogaWorks. Melinda began to learn how to calm her nervous system and settle the busy-ness of her mind through stillness and quiet with the help of various yoga props. She was often reminded of something Ramaswami said many times during her 200-hour training: “We meditate because the mind, too, needs rest.”

Today, Restorative Yoga continues to be a significant practice of self-care and well-being for Melinda. Her intention in each of her classes is to provide a soothing, safe environment where her heart-centered instruction allows students to open into ease, support, and vulnerability as they practice conscious relaxation.