Name: Tessa Manning
Hometown: Sebastopol, CA
Favorite Book: Think and Grow Rich
Favorite Movie: Harold and Maude
What has yoga taught you about life?
Yoga has taught me to slow down and live from the inside out instead of the outside in. I have learned to overcome fears, to breath and to not react so strongly to outside circumstances. It has taught me that pain comes and goes, and I do not have to get so attached to my present pain.
When did you realize that you wanted to help others and make yoga your business and passion?
My very first Iyengar Yoga class. I walked into that class with an ego that told me I already knew so much about yoga. That first class changed my life forever. I got into the first headstand of my life, and the teacher also pointed out my scoliosis; which had not been mentioned to me since I was 13! I was blown away by the openness I felt in my chest and back after class. I remember leaving with a feeling of freedom and disbelief that I could feel so good. I told myself in that class, ‘I don’t know what this is, but this is it. I want to teach this and do this forever.’ I spent years practicing deeply and healing my back pain. I couldn’t wait for the moment I could share this practice with others, and it is my deepest passion to do so.
Do you have one teacher (or more) that you study with? If so, could you describe that relationship?
My main teacher is Manouso Manos out of San Francisco. Manouso is such an amazing teacher I almost don’t have the words to describe him. My first experiences with him I thought he had x-ray vision – he could see things in my body that I know I struggled with but I could not even pinpoint, nor any of my other teachers. Manouso teaches in a way that transcends the boundaries of the physical body. I walk out of his classes the same way I experienced my first yoga class; in a state of disbelief of what I am feeling but also a feeling of complete oneness and depth in my body. Manouso has helped me through a bad neck injury and helps me with my other injuries in a way I know I am going to be ok. His teaching brings me so much and I am so grateful to him every single day.
Can you talk a little bit about what Iyengar yoga means to you?
Iyengar Yoga is true meditation in action. Iyengar said, “how will you know God, if you do not know your big toe.” I really resonate with that quote. Iyengar Yoga brings me so deeply into my body and myself – I experience God/oneness, I experience connection. I love that you learn something and feel you may have mastered it, and then there is something new, and deeper to learn. It is an endless process, deeper and deeper within.
What is your retreat about? What would you like people to experience?
Our retreat will focus on rejuvenation. Creating space for us by getting away from our busy lives and turning our focus to our yoga practice, nature, and relaxation. I am so excited for people to have the experience of 3-4 hours of yoga a day! That in itself is a transformation. The Osa Peninsula is also my favorite place on earth. It is SO beautiful and ALIVE, there is a chance to truly connect with nature through the jungle, ocean, birds, butterflies, mammals, and much more. There will be time for adventures and lots of time to relax as well!
If you had to sum up your retreat in 3 words what would they be?
Wholeness, Inner peace, and Relaxation.