Thanks for taking the time to check out Jennifer Reuter Yoga!
I would like to start off by saying that “Jennifer Reuter Yoga” does not mean that I am starting my “own” yoga. In my humble opinion, yoga is such a vast subject matter that it would be presumptuous of me to think I could form my own style of yoga. The title of the website was just a way for me to link what I love to my name.
I began to discover the intimate meaning of the word “yoga” in 1998 when I was handed my first copy of the “Bhagavad Gita”. I was working for the Navy as an engineer…and I did not feel fulfilled. In fact, I was very depressed! I experienced what some might call the “dark night of the soul”. Many of you can relate to this. In times of discontent, one begins to question one’s own existence. I felt frustrated, unsure, and trapped. I was living the life that society had always told me to live. “Get a solid job and work your way up the ladder.” I don’t know about you but, personally, the “right thing to do” sucked the joy out of my life. When I discovered yoga, a whole new world began to open up. I was especially fascinated with the Bhagavad Gita and it’s multiple philosophical ideas developed by looking into the deeper dimensions of mind, body and spirit.
In 1999, I found myself taking my first yoga class in a gym. Since the age of 19, I had been a gym-enthusiast – eventually becoming an AFAA & ACE certified personal trainer and group fitness instructor. By the late 90’s, yoga classes were making their way into gyms and fitness centers…so it was only natural that I found myself in one. After the first class, I remember leaving and feeling a sense of calmness I had not known before. Something switched inside me and since then my life has been dedicated to trying to understand this word called “yoga”.
The highlights of my yoga career began in 2000 when I first became certified to teach yoga in the gym. The next four years I practiced mainly ashtanga. In 2004, my life opened up to yoga full time. I met my first teacher Shiva Rea in Santa Monica. Shiva’s teachings catapulted my understanding of yoga to a different platform where I knew I had found my life’s passion.
I met many teachers in Santa Monica and had many opportunities to study with these amazing yogis. I loved Anusara yoga and studied intensely this “style” for about 2 years. It was in 2007 that I encountered my next teacher – Dr Paul Muller-Ortega. He was asked to lecture at one of Shiva Rea’s trainings. His powerful teaching on yoga, tantra and meditation was captivating and hit right to the core of my heart. It was through his teachings and practices of meditation that I would begin to truly understand and expand the meaning of this word “yoga” and to uncover the lost places of myself.
By 2009 I felt ready to take my knowledge of yoga to the next level. I partnered with two dear friends at Open Space Yoga in Honolulu and we formed a yoga school for people wishing to become yoga teachers. The beauty of the school was that we each had been trained in a slightly different manner. This was very beneficial because each of us was able to contribute unique pearls of wisdom to the training. The Yoga Teacher Training School was an immediate success. The students loved to hear different voices, different ideas and different ways of experiencing the yoga path to fulfillment. They realized that they could find yoga in their own way – that yoga is a living connection to that highest place within ourselves and that each person can discover its meaning in a very unique way.
Today I feel very blessed to be sharing what I love. I continue to study all the time. My new inspiration is Tias Little out of Santa Fe. He is truly rooted in the ancient style of yoga yet has his eyes on the necessary adaptations and innovations that need to happen in the yoga world. Locally I try to expand my understanding of “yoga-asana” by exploring other body movements. I have been a consistent student of pilates since 2008. I am overly passionate on the word “mysticism” , my heroes are Joseph Campbell, St. Francis, Ramana Maharshi, to name a few. The books on my shelves are titled, “chakras”, “yoga sutras”,”tantra”, “power of now” , to name a few. Yoga is always targeting the three planes: physical, mental and energetic. So there is a lot to learn here and I am forever dedicated to continue that process until the end of this life.
Many people enter yoga thinking it is about a good stretch. Loosely defined, yoga means union. More accurately defined yoga means that the thinking mind has settled. What is left when the thinking mind has settled? The yoga sutras tell us: “Sva Rupa” or your “Best Self”. What are the means and the ways to settle the noisy mind? What is cloaked underneath all the internal dialogue? What would we really see and experience if the dust on the mirror was lifted? It is an endless process but worth every effort.