European Yogi Nomads: Paris

Yogis Sans Frontières: European Yogi Nomads invade Paris!

Since they launched last October, European Yogi Nomads have made good on their promise of connecting yoga communities across the continent. So far, they have linked Berlin to Basel, Copenhagen to Gothenburg, and this weekend, the nomads yoke all of those splendid places to Paris, bringing with them an enthusiasm for yoga, and for extending friendship across national and sticky mat borders. The event’s workshops and guerilla-style pop-up classes have quickly filled up -- remember what I said about enthusiasm? -- however there are still spots remaining in some of the sessions if you’d like to register.

“Make new friends, explore new places, expand your yoga!”

Since Anne Vandewalle is not only one of the founders of European Yogi Nomads, but the Paris-based host for this weekend’s festivities, I popped in to her Monday night class at Beyoga to sort of take the temperature. And guess what? The energy was palpable! There were already two visiting yogis (“The Great Danes” as Anne called them) lending their positive vibes to the class whose theme, naturally, was about how in order to open yourself to others, you must be stable yourself. One way that Anne brought this idea home and into the body was to partner us by twos and threes for handstand and later, for urdhva dhanurasana. As physical manifestations of being secure with yourself in order to be receptive to others, that pair of poses is terrific: you build as much confidence and trust in yourself as you do in the person supporting you. Throughout class, there was laughter, incredulity (“La vache!” i.e. “Holy cow! or “Blimey!”), a mix of French and English, and a delicious savasana where, in a perfect augury of things to come, frontiers between beginners and advanced, strangers and good friends, old and young became permeable and then, evanescent.