Letter from the President

Dear Fellow IYNAUS Members,
First of all, my thanks to those of you who voted in this spring's election for the new IYNAUS Board. In October, the Board will be holding its first meeting with our four newly elected Board Members: Rebecca Lerner, Janet Lilly, Phyllis Rollins, and Virginia Burdette. Current Board Member Elizabeth Hynes was also elected to another four-year term and will provide us with greater continuity by remaining as Membership Chair.

As we welcome the new Board members, we also say goodbye to those who will no longer be serving: Kathleen Quinn, Suzie Muchnick, Pat Musburger, and Richard Jonas. The amount of time and energy these four individuals put into their work for the association is truly phenomenal; they will be both badly missed and difficult to replace.

The biggest news of the past few months was the 2010 IYNAUS Convention, "Reflection," which was held in May in Portland, Oregon, and was a huge success by any definition. More than 500 certified teachers attended the convention, including approximately 400 from the United States and another 100 from around the world. For five days, we were treated to a masterful demonstration of yoga therapeutics, led by Geeta S. Iyengar and assisted by Geetaji's sister Sunita Parthasarathy, her niece Abhijata Sridhar, and several other teachers from both Pune and Mumbai. Several American senior teachers also assisted with the afternoon sessions, in which the convention participants had a chance to experience hands-on applications of various props and set-ups for different asanas.

With so much to learn and absorb in such a short time, most of us will also find it essential to watch and rewatch the DVDs of the convention. The set of nine discs became available in mid August and can now be purchased from the IYNAUS Store. Although many put their time and thought into producing the DVDs, I would like to acknowledge the special efforts of Paul Cabanis (director), Bee Ottinger (editor), and Linda Nishio (design). We are fortunate to have such a skilled and experienced trio to put together a first-class product.

I also want to recognize the organizational support and effort that made this year's convention such a great success. The amazing team of volunteers, led by Julie Lawrence and Co-Chair, Gloria Goldberg, made everything run smoothly and (it seemed, at least) calmly. Portland is not only a great city—as many of us discovered during the time we were there—but also has a thriving Iyengar Yoga community.

As I mentioned in my last "Letter from the President," the next event to put on your calendar is the "From the Heartland" regional conference, which will be held in Chicago, September 15—18, 2011. The Midwest Region is organizing and hosting this conference, led by Conference Chair Laurie Blakeney. The venue will be the beautiful and historic Palmer House in downtown Chicago. As more details emerge about the conference—which will be open to all practitioners of Iyengar Yoga—we will pass them along to you.

The next conference, to be held in September 2011 in Chicago, will be organized and hosted by the Iyengar Yoga Association of the Midwest and will be titled "From the Heartland." The mission of the conference will be "to share the clarity, artistry, depth, and discipline of Iyengar Yoga as a lifelong practice for body, mind, and spirit." The conference will be held at the historic Palmer House in downtown Chicago, which will provide an inspiring venue for participants. We are looking forward to this exciting event, and we will continue to provide updates as the details of the conference emerge.

Guruji has often said that in an asana, equal attention should be paid to all parts of the body. In a similar way, IYNAUS would like to be able to pay attention to all of our members. In the nearly two years that I have served as president of IYNAUS, I have made it a high priority to make every effort to serve the needs of our membership by being open and accessible, as well as by providing the information and help you need, whether as teachers, as students, or as members of your local or regional community. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact General Manager Sharon Cowdery, Membership Chair Elizabeth Hynes, or the other members of the Board.

Chris Beach, President
Iyengar Yoga National Association of the United States