Mr. January – Mike Matsumura

Mr. January – Mike Matsumura

Mike Matsumura

How did you find yoga?  Or did yoga find you?

Both! I found yoga strictly out of boredom. Back in 2001, I was living in NYC and I wasn’t getting any exercise, so I asked my longtime friend, Manorama, about yoga. Manorama is a Sanskrit scholar who teaches Sanskrit, Yoga Sutra, and yoga philosophy. I wasn’t sure if yoga was for me so I asked her if I should try it. She suggested I try yoga at Jivamukti in NYC. I did and I also remember my first class very well… In a nutshell, I thought I was going to die. It was the most challenging thing I had ever done. Literally, my mantra became, “I am never coming back, I am never coming back, I am never coming back.” I am not sure why I went back, but I knew after a few days that I was hooked. I was on my mat a lot and very consistently ever since then. Yoga definitely found me also and I continue to keep finding myself little by little through practicing and teaching yoga.

Biggest challenge as a student/teacher?

As a student, I always try to remember that it is not about getting every posture. Listening to my body is one of the toughest things for me and I work on this constantly. As a teacher, managing my time in class can be challenging. I enjoy teaching so much that I always feel that the class goes very quickly and sometimes, I go over the time by 5-10 minutes.

Any advice for your fellow yogis out there in this big, vast yoga world?

Keep practicing and don’t worry about “getting the pose.” It will happen by continuous practice and by enjoying the journey on your mat. Yoga is not a week, month, or year practice. It is a lifetime practice, so take your time. Keep an open mind about practice. Like B.K.S. Iyengar mentioned that the mind is the hardest part of the body to adjust. Try to practice outside the box and enjoy the journey to Self-realization.

Favorite place to eat in Austin?

Since I am a vegetarian, I have limited places that I typically eat at. Some of my favorites are local Austin restaurants… Bouldin Creek Cafe, Kerbey Lane and Mother’s Café.

Catch Mike’s class Monday 12, Tuesday 1:15, or Saturday 12.

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