Teacher Feature – Sara Germann

Sara teaches our monthly Restorative Yoga offering and lends her hand at subbing classes when her work as a college professor allows.  Her limited appearance on the FYC schedule has turned her classes into somewhat of a cult-like following . . . and with good reason!  To attend one of Sara’s classes is an experience not to miss.  She is intuitive, nurturing and has the unique and rare skill of soothing an entire room, creating a sacred space for her students.

We are so fortunate to have her as a member of this yoga community.  Read on to learn a little more about Sara, and be sure to sign up for Restorative Yoga THIS SUNDAY (2/22) as space is extremely limited.   CLICK HERE TO REGISTER.

What made you try yoga for the first time?  I was drawn to yoga as a child, after perusing my mother’s vinyl record collection and discovering a yoga record from the 1970’s.  In graduate school, in the early 2000s, I tried yoga as an elective course at Ohio State to augment my distance running.  When I noticed the difference in my flexibility and then, my anxiety levels, I was hooked!

What’s your favorite book and why?  It’s hard to pick just one!  I am usually reading multiple books at any given time, but I love Wilke Collins, in particular “The Woman in White”.  It was required reading in high school, but I love his humor and the prose is relevant today as much as it was in his time.  

What inspires you?  I am moved by the little triumphs of other people, especially those of my students and patients.  Whether a student who works diligently to understand a complex process of the body or a patient who is finally able to walk from the bed to the door without assistance, those personal accomplishments are motivational to me to tackle my own challenges.  My nieces are also a source of inspiration.  They are young and are ready to tackle the world with unbridled enthusiasm.  

What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?  Travel books and magazines.  I love to plan trips for the future.  The world is full of adventures waiting to be had!

How do you stay balanced?  How do you unwind?  Balance is difficult for me as I tend to immerse myself into whatever I am focused on at the moment.   That said, yoga and running help me stay balanced.  I need the focus on the breath and my own movement to get out of my head and ground myself.  I tend to have so many interests that I need meditation to help me stay grounded.  

I unwind with a cup of tea (and occasional glass of red wine, if I’m honest), a hot bath and a good book.  I try to turn off all electronics and stay in the moment.  

What’s your favorite part about teaching yoga?  Yoga is a spiritual practice for me more than a physical one.  I love teaching restorative yoga because often the energy in the room by the end of the class is calm and meditative.  I believe strongly in the many benefits of practice and feel it’s a way to enhance health and well-being in others.  I have been a registered nurse for 16 years, so being able to offer something to others that is holistic as opposed to the medication forced wester approach is quite meaningful to me.  

How do you try to live a mindful life?  Mindfulness is difficult and something I struggle with, but I try and do small things, such as leaving my cell phone behind when with friends and colleagues.  I have taken to running without music to be more aware of my body’s response and taking weekend retreats periodically from technology.

Words (or quote) to live by?  “If you want to go fast, go alone.  If you want to go far, go together.”  African Proverb

Best trip you’ve ever taken?  Oh, this is a tough one for me!  I have so many wonderful memories of travel and honestly, it’s been the people I’ve been with that make the trip usually.  I have trips to Italy, Berlin and Istanbul planned this year, so the jury is out on a “best” trip.  That said, my sister, mother and I traveled to Paris and Dublin last spring together and it was wonderful!  I think my favorite memory was dancing in the street with my Mom in Dublin.  I’ll never forget it!

What’s your favorite yoga pose and why?  I love Ardha Chandrasana (half moon) because it’s calming for me, for reasons I can’t explain.  I just know it’s the pose I default to when I need to calm my mind and body.

The best thing about living in Maine is . . . Maine is a very healing place, with the beauty of the outdoors and the amazing music and food scene here.  I also love the ruggedness, honesty and kindness of those who live here.  My heart will always be firmly rooted in my native Kentucky, but this is a second home to me after 7 years in Portland.

Favorite playlist?  I really like the sound of Tibetan singing bowls.  The resonance is quite moving and lovely for resting in Savasana.

What do you love about Freeport Yoga Company?  I love the yogis who practice – what a diverse group of people!  I also appreciate the openness of the other teachers and their creativity.  There is a strong physical practice here, but in addition, a spiritual feel is present.  It’s a beautiful place!  

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