Last month I was privileged enough to attend a weekend workshop with renowned teacher Nicki Doane. I had heard great things about Nicki’s classes and teacher trainings and was very excited to experience her teachings first-hand. Well, I am officially a huge Nicki fan. She is a powerhouse with a kind heart and her passion for the practice and teaching is beyond inspiring.
Here’s is a breakdown of my experience:
- Location: Nicki Doane teaches 5-day intensives, workshops and teacher trainings out of her and Eddie Modestini’s Maya Yoga studio in Maui. She also offers her teachings at workshops across North America. This particular workshop was hosted by Yoga Santosha in Calgary, which was a gorgeous setting for the weekend.
- Format: 4 sessions lead by Nicki over a Friday to Sunday, each with a specific focus (hip openers, backbends, inversions, flow).
- Style: Nicki had a wonderful way of opening the body to prepare for the focus of each session. Classes included a beautiful combination of asana (postures), pranayama (breath), philosophy, and poetry by Rumi. I would categorize the style as a unique blend of Ashtanga and Iyengar; as her bio eloquently states: “the emphasis is on awareness: creating integrity within each pose that can be carried beyond the mat into daily life.”
- Pricing: $231 for the weekend (including taxes), early bird and individual session pricing available.
Nicki’s teaching style embodies what I love about my favourite teachers: precise, alignment focused, inspiring and down-to-earth. Having studied under Sri K Pattabhi Jois himself, Nicki is incredibly knowledgeable and very alignment focused, offering wonderful adjustments and modifications. Each session began with kirtan-style (call and response) singing, and a beautiful message from Nicki about the student-teacher relationship and respect for different styles of yoga.
Nicki’s teachings expertly prepared the body for the peak poses; for example we spent a good deal of time in King Arthur’s pose during the hip opener class, opening the legs to better access the hips. The format was an especially great reminder of the amount of work required to prepare the body for advanced postures. Nicki’s sense of humour and kindness were cherries on top of the expert teachings we received. When the weekend was over I quickly began scheming about how I could sneak in a trip to Maui for more Nicki; I hope to be saying aloha, and mahalo, to her and Eddie sometime soon.
I can’t say enough about my wonderful workshop experience, so I will encourage you to visit the Maya Yoga website to learn more and check out Nicki’s great collection of videos.
Have you been to a Nicki Doane workshop? Worked with her in Maui? Let us know in the comments below!
About 8 years ago I came to yoga looking for a way to improve my strength and flexibility for a snowboarding season in New Zealand.Little did I know that the practice would become an instrumental part of my life.Yoga is now the foundation for all things that I value – my personal relationships, singing and songwriting, my day job at an airline, and all the physical activities I enjoy outdoors.
Having completed my teacher training in the Iyengar style of yoga I love classes that focus on critical alignment, particularly those that explore movement in fun and creative ways.My favourite classes are lead by down-to-earth instructors who safely challenge us to try something new and have a laugh while doing it.