Artist, yoga teacher, wellness expert, and entrepreneur – Sherry Frydenlund owns Rain Yoga, in Denver, Colorado. On November 17th, she is heading south into the jungles of Costa Rica, leading a yoga retreat at Blue Osa. We tracked Sherry down and asked her to give us a glimpse into her inspiration, her yoga practice, and her unique approach to meditation. Check out her answers to discover more about this fearless and fun-loving yogi!
You have recently started your yoga business – Rain Yoga. What about yoga inspires you?
“Yoga offers me a complete sense of self and has opened doors for me that nothing else been able to before. I was never an athlete in school because I could never control my breathing. I was an asthmatic with severe allergies. I was often sick as a child. It wasn’t until I was introduced to yoga that I found something that could bring me body awareness, breath control and an overall sense of well-being. It’s truly changed my life. It has also assisted me in my spiritual growth which is endless. I believe that our reactions on the yoga mat are direct reflections of how we react out in the world. I have found more of a sense of peace and tranquility through yoga and simply would like to share that with as many people as I can.”
What motivated you to work towards your goal of creating your own yoga business?
“It seemed like the natural path for me. Teaching has long been a part of my life. I was a college instructor teaching computer animation and graphic design software programs for years. I also am a mother of two which is the hardest teaching position of all, I believe. Students motivate me to move toward the goal of owning my own yoga studio and retreat business. To assist another experience yoga to find joy, happiness, contentment, their breath or body awareness, – whatever the case may be – is something that makes me smile ridiculously big and my heart explode. I can’t get enough of watching them have those “A-HA!” moments…”
Can you tell us more about the name “Rain Yoga”.
“It just came out of my mouth while brainstorming for a name one evening with my husband. Like so many, I have such a LOVE and PASSION for Yoga that I can never seem to get enough of it – from the exploration of the physical practice of asana – to pranayama – to the philosophical systems of the Yoga Sutras & 8 Limbed Path- to absorbing the wisdom of great teachers & their beautiful metaphors that are poetically intertwined with their sequencing. When I truly allow myself to practice yoga (on and off the mat) and walk through life in the present moment allowing all of what is happening to rain down upon me in all its fury and glory – it is then that I feel the most alive so I say ‘Let it Rain Yoga’ all day everyday!
You are leading a yoga retreat this Novem
ber at Blue Osa in Costa Rica, Any expectations for the event?
This will be a fairly structured Yoga retreat with a daily itinerary that includes flex time to enjoy optional excursions or just free time to relax! Expect optional sunrise meditations and journaling. The overall theme for the retreat will focus on creating an “attitude of gratitude”, just in time for the holiday season, which I believe has the power to transform the mind & heart. The more grateful we are, the more present we are. We become grounded in the realization that what we have at this moment is enough.
When was your first experience at Blue Osa?
April of 2011 was the 1st trip, I believe. What an epic trip! I had the time of my life and knew I had experienced something incomparable. I was in awe with everything about the trip: The beauty of Costa Rica, the people and staff that make up the family of Blue Osa, the culture and food, and the energy that surrounds Blue Osa is purely magical.
Can the experience of yoga can be broadened when it is practiced in a new or dynamic location like Costa Rica?
Absolutely. I believe it connects us more to our practice because we have essentially removed ourselves from the familiar daily grind. We are creatures of habit and we must always work to pull away from what is comfortable. The experience of yoga in any place that is unfamiliar, perhaps simply a new studio or teacher or as extreme as taking your practice on vacation will ensure a shift in perspective of the world around us. Through this new perspective we learn new things about others and hopefully ourselves through the process.
What type of yoga do you teach and what sets me apart from other practices?
I teach a dynamic vinyasa flow, linking breath with movement, along with an emphasis on alignment. The classes are musically and philosophy-infused with a blend of athleticism, rich in spirit, sweaty with hard work, and celebratory in tone. Students can expect creative & responsible sequencing, advanced arm balances and inversions, and most likely a handstand or two toward the end of class! It is always my hope that students will laugh as much as they sweat, and leave a little stronger, a little softer, and a lot more balanced.
Aaron, the founder of Blue Osa, is known for teaching about removing layers of attachment – both physically and metaphorically. How do you feel yoga has changed your perception of attachment and what tactics do you use to express your freedom?
Through my studies of yoga, I hold the belief that everything is in a constant state of flux and that we truly do not possess much in this world – if anything… everything is temporary. Nothing in this world intrinsically exists on its own. Everything is interconnected. There is a true freedom that I feel with this understanding and I express that freedom by doing things that absolutely scare the hell out of me since I know the feeling won’t last and will likely shift into a feeling of empowerment! It could be something as simple as speaking out in front of others to showing my artwork in public venues to skydiving or riding my motorcycle across the United States without a helmet.
As far as your upcoming yoga retreat, what are you specifically excited for?
Where do I start?! I love the Blue Osa family and can’t wait to see their smiling faces!!!I also have a family of 5 coming that have never done yoga and I cannot wait to witness the transformations!