Meet Sarah Court, a member of our teaching team who leads regular Yoga Tune Up® classes and workshops on a variety of topics in the LA area and abroad (nationally and internationally).
How did you discover Yoga Tune Up® and why did you decide to become a teacher?
I discovered YTU when I first moved to Los Angeles 6 years ago and took class with Jill Miller. I was immediately drawn to the practical and insightful approach to movement that honored traditional yoga practices while applying modern comprehension of kinesiology and biomechanics. 3 weeks after my first class with Jill, I took the Level 1 teacher training. As a vinyasa teacher at that time, it answered questions I didn’t even realize I had and constantly challenged me to search out more learning so that I could be a better teacher. It made complete sense to become a YTU teacher and to integrate that into my teaching. I’m currently pursuing a doctorate in Physical Therapy and I can directly relate that trajectory to becoming a YTU teacher trainer.
What advice would you give a new student just starting a YTU practice?
For a new student, I think what’s most important is to stay open – meaning, if you’re feeling overwhelmed because you’ve never taken a class where the teacher is talking about biomechanics, know that you’ll still get all the benefits of the movement even if you don’t totally understand what they’re talking about (yet)! If you’re accustomed to a more traditional yoga class, consider YTU as an adjunct to your practice that might grant you more insight into your own movement habits and get you moving better in your own body. If you’re brand new to all yoga, just have a good time!
The Yoga Tune Up motto is “Live better in your body”. What does that mean to you?
Live better in your body, to me, means valuing self-care. I see in many of my students the desire to drive and work hard in every way they move, whether yoga, running, spin, CrossFit and so on. Tuning into my body’s true needs might mean a day of only Therapy Ball rolling, or static poses, or just taking a walk and feeling the breeze and sun on my face.
If you could only choose one YTU movement or therapy ball technique to take with you on a desert island, what would it be?
My desert island Therapy Ball maneuver is the Trapezius Tamer. After a long day of school hunched over a computer (sound familiar, anyone?) It’s the best way to get the day out of my upper back and to guarantee myself a good night’s sleep.
Here’s how to tame your upper trapezius:
Oh yes, I need this trapezius tamer! After a long cold winter, I noticed in a couple of different phots that my shoulders were lifted. I soon realized I have been activating my trapezius all winter to some how try and stay warm. Time to undo a seasons worth of gripping.
Nice to meet you Sarah!
Diane Marra was singing your praises to me. She inspired me to take the Level 1 TT which I just did in Larkspur with Dawn and Laurie. I look forward to reading more from you. Trapezius Tamer is top on my list as well!
Sarah, it’s little runner girl here….I just started the level 1 teacher training today. You introduced me to Yoga Tune Up and got me hooked. You da best, and I always love hearing your perspective, tips, and advice. Thank you.
Jill was talking highly of you today so I had to read your intro! I am so glad that I did because it really gave me some insight of how to approach YTU with my students when I go back and begin using it in my classes. The trapezius tamer is my list of self care for tonight when I’m done this homework!
I came for the Sarah Court; I stayed for the trapezius tamer. Both awesome.
It’s been a pleasure to study with you, Sarah! I appreciate your focus on yoga as means of self-care and self-study rather than pushing and achieving something. Thank you!
I love this blog for a number of reasons.
First of all, being relatively new to the YTU world, it’s nice to hear Sarah’s reasurring tips for students just starting out on this journey — basically, stop and smell the roses. Wise words. S
econd, you get a sense of team work and camaderie as the two senior teachers make a video together — you can feel both the professionalism and the love!
Third, I’m going to try the trapezius tamer tomorrow at the Level 1 teacher training tomorrow with Todd Lavictoire! Thanks Sarah!
I enjoy hearing how people have come to YTU from all walks of life, and find this method that gives us a bountiful amount of tools to assist us in assisting others. It also awakens this need to keep learning that we may not have had or has gone dormant over time. I am excited to continue meeting more trainers and becoming an integrated instructor.
I have yet to meet a person who does not have tight upper traps(office work, oh my! Like go through the roof at light palpation tight) They are one of the banes of work in technology fields and their immobility leads to a viscous circle of overuse and lackluster breathing patterns. Thanks so much for giving this area attention.
I have to choose the trapezius tamer with the piriformis primer in close second! I have been teaching yoga for a few years and have never been successful in getting my husband on the mat until I brought home the YTU balls! now he travels with them too!
Video was great, I will definitely use that. I think you are right, we all need time to reflect and value self-care, our bodies and minds need cleansing days and I think we tend to forget that.
So nice to know that there are so many scientific professionals who support and teach yoga tune up and are available to the YTU community of teachers and students. Like you mentioned about many of your students, I too have found that I work too hard in my yoga practice and with YTU have learned when it’s appropriate to strengthen and when it’s appropriate relax.