OM Diaries with Erin Gilmore

Tell us a bit about yourself...

When did you start practicing yoga? What do you love most about it?

I started practicing yoga as a freshman fashion student at FIT in the early 2000’s. It reminded me of the dance classes that I thrived in growing up, and I loved that. It was transformative to once again be exploring my body and how it feels as I move it; as opposed to forcing myself to move as a punishment and a means to look a certain way. I absolutely loved the way this practice slowly brought me back to focusing on what this container holds, instead of how perfectly it looks while holding it.

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What’s your favorite thing about teaching yoga?

I love watching people figure out how to manage and stay with themselves. Peeling off stories, examining their personal mythology, and using the practice to repair any non-useful reactions to both themselves and their world.

Where do you find your inspiration for your classes?

I like to make a new playlist every week and I practice to it, or dance, or roll around on the floor to it, until it evolves into a sequence. I’m inspired by what I’m feeling or what’s going on in the world, so I may talk about a thing or two in class, but my real goal is to give you space and time to feel for yourself.

Do you run? If so, why?

I was a daily runner for a good part of my life, and unfortunately, it got tangled up in my eating disorder so I stepped away from it for a while. Now, I’m much more of a long walker or moderate hiker. Recently I’ve started doing Barry’s Bootcamp classes and the running section does wonders to clear my head and make me feel powerful!

What are your suggestions for runners getting into yoga?

I would say try a bunch of different kinds. Power vinyasa is my love and it’s great but, your body may not want a super high-energy flow after putting many miles on your feet. You may want a slower class with longer holds? Hatha or Yin might be the way to go. It’s also just fun trying new and different styles and figuring out which suits you best and when.

And I would also highly recommend using props! There is a slight stigma surrounding props, some feel they are a signal of weakness but, thanks to props, I’m now experiencing even more feeling and connection with myself than I previously accessed on my own.

What is your favorite pose?

Oh! Hard to say! I really love forearm stand because it makes me feel confident, capable, and strong as hell. But I also love to work splits and feel my legs in seated butterfly pose! Those would be my top 3 :)  They’re all lovely in their own way.

And lastly, what is your spirit animal?
HA! Well, depends on who you ask! Many people swear I am the spirit of a sloth, my boyfriend thinks I have the spirit of a cat? Haha. Um, I think I’m a sloth, honestly. I fell in love with them as a teen in Costa Rica and they fascinate me but mostly, I just relate to them! Slow livin’! Easy does it and good vibes! :)