Sharon Epstein is a Nationally Registered Dance Movement
Therapist since 1989 and a New York State Licensed Creative Arts Therapist.
Throughout the years, Sharon continually builds and broadens her knowledge,
skills and experience in working with the body/mind/spirit paradigm.
She has worked within the fields of general psychiatry, substance abuse,
oncology, neurology, geriatrics, as well as wellness and preventive
care. She continues to take numerous workshops and classes but learns
most from the classes she teaches.
As a yoga teacher, Sharon received her 300 hour level
training from Laughing Lotus, NYC (2012) and her 200 hour training at
the Yoga and Polarity Center of Malverne, Long Island (2007) She has
additional training in prenatal yoga and yoga for kids. Sharon currently
leads dance programs for people with Parkinson’s Disease and for
women recovering from cancer. She is proud to facilitate an embodied
Judaism class, blending Yoga and Judaism at Temple Beth El of Great
Neck alongside Rabbi Tara Feldman.
Sharon is so grateful and appreciative for the shared
wisdom and energy of her many teachers, colleagues and students within
the yoga and dance community.
Getting to Know Sharon...
1) Why did you start practicing yoga?
In the late 1970s I fell into a Yoga class in NYC to stretch my body
and relax my mind after taking dance class. Intrigued, and intuitively
feeling this was where I needed and wanted to be, I took out a Yoga
recording from our local library and practiced along, as a teenager
from my bedroom at home. Over the next decade yoga was intertwined with
theatre warm-ups and dance cool downs. Then, in the early 1990's living
and working in NYC, Yoga exploded and became very accessible and was
very "cool" . It became my personal refuge as I worked a stressful
job as a dance movement therapist in a psychiatric hospital. Throughout
the decades, yoga's many layers have been revealed to meet the different
challenges, changes and needs of my life.
2) How would you describe your teaching style?
My teaching style is eclectic. I love vinyasa flow, I love alignment,
I love aspects of kundilini. I have studied with so many different teachers
over the years from many different traditions. I love it all... I love
variety and creativity. It is all Hatha Yoga!
3) Who or what is your inspiration?
What inspires me is an exchange of energy, ideas and friendship among
teachers and students in the yoga community.
4) Tell us something that we would never guess about you?
I manage living with an auto immune condition called Crohn's Disease.
Many people assume that Yoga teachers are "anti-medicine".
I am grateful that I have medications that keep my condition in a remission
most of the time, and that I am able to live a really active full life,
mostly free of pain. I believe that It is possible that Yoga contributes
to my remission!!
5) What is your least favorite asana to practice?
My least favorite pose is wheel.
Due to mild arthritis in my lumbar spine and sacroiliac joint,
I need to work very diligently to access the muscles in my upper
body so I do not feel compression or rubbing of bone on bone in
my lumbar spine. This takes a lot of effort, stamina, strength
and awareness on my part. When I do practice wheel pose on a regular
basis, I feel a lot of freedom in the front and back of my body.
At times, when I prefer to back off and put less effort into a
pose, I modify and practice bridge pose. I especially enjoy the
support and pressure of a block under my lower back. This pose
then becomes a favorite!!
Name 1 thing on your bucket list.
On my bucket list is hiking and biking through some of our country's
magnificent national parks.