Published on June 16th, 2016 | by Catherine Tingey0
Yoga in Big Bear
Yoga in Big Bear
One of the great things about practicing yoga is that no matter where you go, the yoga community is welcoming.
Yoga in Big Bear is one of those places where your neighbor on the mat says Hi, and your teacher sends you home with her home cooking. And it’s a delight.
This week I’ve been doing some continuing education in Big Bear, and touring the 2 studios: Big Bear Yoga and Mountain Yoga Center. I took 2 classes at each studio and both have their own unique vibe.
At Big Bear Yoga I met Elizabeth Pelegrina, a self-proclaimed, ‘Accidental Yogi’. Elizabeth discovered yoga and Ayurveda after a disc herniation and the rest is history.
She led the intimate group (me, another yoga teacher, Yogi Matt) and a 3rd student in a mindful Vinyasa class, with an emphasis at the end on floor-based postures. She explained that the uptick of wind outside (there is a yellow pollen covering EVERYTHING) creates excess Vata (dosha) and being closer to the ground would have a balancing effect on our constitutions.
I also took a cool class called Energy Medicine at Big Bear Yoga, taught by Carol Treadwell. This woman is really a fountain of information! She studied with Donna Eden whose work is a totally new world to me. It combines Chinese meridians, acupressure and the energy systems developed by Donna. We stimulated points on the physical body with acupressure self-massage, as well as in our auric field. I would love to have more classes like this in Los Angeles!
Over at Mountain Yoga Center, owner Dana Andrews is about to celebrate her 1st year of business.
Dana has a strong Ashtanga background and the 2 classes I took, with her and Colin Schour reflect a reverence for alignment. Students familiar with Yogaworks yoga, and Vinyasa flow will find themselves quite at home in her new studio.
Classes at both studios are affordable with prices for visitors usually a couple dollars more than locals. I paid $12/class at Big Bear Yoga and $50 for a 5 class pass (+1 free) at Mountain Yoga Center.
Lastly, if anyone suffers from even the mildest allergies, please don’t go to Big Bear in June unarmed. The pollen is so abundant that a fine yellow dust covers anything left outside, and I spent the first three days trying to emerge from a histamine fog – and that was WITH allergy meds.
Which brings me to my final anecdote – after Elizabeth’s class I was talking about how I needed a steam room, or at least some nourishing Ayurvedic food, like Kitchiri and magically she brings out a container, made herself, and handed it to me. That’s the kind of place this is.
For anyone curious, Kitchiri is a mild cleansing and detoxifying ‘soup’ made from basmati rice and mung beans, with generous amounts of Indian spices and some ghee (Indian butter). I’ve always thought this is the perfect breakfast food for people who have cold constitutions, and it’s easy to make. Elizabeth does Ayurvedic cooking and counseling and is a wealth of information on optimal health with Ayurveda.
For such a small town, the healing arts are alive and well in Big Bear. I highly recommend anyone travelling there check them out!