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A Note from Ashley Tryba

My Yoga journey began when I was seven years old when my mother – a school teacher with sciatica and chronic pain from standing every day – started practicing. I thought everything my mom did was cool. After 15 years of working in special education and teaching in juvenile detention centers, my mom took her first 200HR and evolved into a yoga teacher by 2000. 

I took an interest in philosophy from a young age. I was constantly asking questions – and the questions only increased when I started attempting to read the Yogic texts my mom was assigned in her trainings. I was curious to learn more about why we were here, what it all meant, and what I was supposed to do with my life.

As I matured, so did my interest in Yogic practice, philosophy, and to no avail to my parents, so did my questions. Throughout my adolescence and college, I was lucky to have my Yoga practices to lean on as a means to ground, calm, and focus myself.

At age 17, my practice and life took an unexpected detour when I was in a traumatic bike accident and suffered a compression fracture in T7, broken jaws and some intense lacerations. I was homeschooled for the first half of my senior year of high school with a back brace and my jaws wired shut.
For the first time in my life, most of my friends were off to college and I was stuck in my room, unable to move and forced to really look at myself, and radically accept the reality of my situation.

My Yoga journey began when I was seven years old when my mother – a school teacher with sciatica and chronic pain from standing every day – started practicing. I thought everything my mom did was cool. After 15 years of working in special education and teaching in juvenile detention centers, my mom took her first 200HR and evolved into a yoga teacher by 2000. 

I took an interest in philosophy from a young age. I was constantly asking questions – and the questions only increased when I started attempting to read the Yogic texts my mom was assigned in her trainings. I was curious to learn more about why we were here, what it all meant, and what I was supposed to do with my life.

As I matured, so did my interest in Yogic practice, philosophy, and to no avail to my parents, so did my questions. Throughout my adolescence and college, I was lucky to have my Yoga practices to lean on as a means to ground, calm, and focus myself.

At age 17, my practice and life took an unexpected detour when I was in a traumatic bike accident and suffered a compression fracture in T7, broken jaws and some intense lacerations. I was homeschooled for the first half of my senior year of high school with a back brace and my jaws wired shut.

For the first time in my life, most of my friends were off to college and I was stuck in my room, unable to move and forced to really look at myself, and radically accept the reality of my situation.

I was told I would never back bend or invert again. Once I began recovering physically, I was lucky to heal quickly and slowly got back into my physical activity I slowly but surely began to feel confident enough to approach advanced yoga poses again. I was young.

Four years later, I broke my wrist biking and this year, I shattered my radial head. I am not as young. Injuries – and life – happen to all of us. Injuries and loss of mobility are not only physically painful but also emotionally difficult. I realized getting older didn’t make any of my problems any simpler, but my practices supported me in evolving past fear to transformative action – in my life, and in my community.
This is why I love teaching yoga to students of all ages, stages of life, and levels of physical ability.

I am committed to teaching more than just the physical practice in order to honor and embody Yoga’s roots and to share the practices that have been supportive to me in the most challenging points of my life – when my physical health and abilities were compromised. I integrate Yogic practices as well as self myofascial release and other self-care modalities to alleviate my client’s chronic pain and share the tools that have assisted me and many of my students through the traumatic situations and shifts that life presents us with. 

After many years of self-study and practice, I now understand that it is an honor and my duty to pass along the coping skills, perspective, and sense of self-empowerment and self-liberation my Yoga teachers have supported me with over the past 21 years.

I ask myself daily:

How can I engage and inspire all students to turn their challenges and pain – as well as their ideas and interests – into creative transformation in our community and world?

How can we take time to notice our tendencies, imbalances, and how we can counter them to take better care of ourselves?

When we discuss pain/injury/imbalances in our individual bodies, how can we also employ our practices to address harm and injustices in our world?

How can we apply these practices on a macro-scale and show up more fully in the fight for equity in our world?

How can we care for one another so that everyone feels supported, affirmed, and free?

In my understanding, this is what our Yoga practice is for.

By taking care of ourselves, we have more to share with those around us. By taking care of others, we also take care of ourselves, as community is our most valuable resource. This reciprocity is proof that we are connected, even in physical isolation. This reciprocity reveals the deep beauty and meaning that exist, even in a world that often feels chaotic and painful.
Let us again, together, begin the practice of Yoga.

Love,

Ashley