We’re spotlighting Debbie Rogers, a strong, tough, fun-loving light in our Bella family!! Hello friends, my name is Debbie Rogers and I am extremely honored to have the opportunity to teach and practice Ashtanga with you. My yoga journey began over 30 years ago. I have practiced many styles in many locations around the world. However my first athletic adventure and passion was running. After too many long distance runs and marathons, my body said no more; and just would not run one more step. For those who are runners you know how this can be devastating, even depressing. Finding yoga moved from depression to having a passion.
I was drawn to Power Yoga as a means to stay fit and still “get my adrenaline fix”. I signed up for a yoga workshop not knowing what that meant or what to expect with Micheline Berry and I was hooked! I wanted what she was having!….think Meg Ryan in “When Harry Met Sally”. This was the first of many transitional moments in my yoga journey.
My passion for yoga grew quickly and I was soon practicing 6 days a week. Being a Pitta I dove right in head first. Making the personal connection with body and mind took me past just asana and getting a workout in. I knew there was more to explore. I received my 200 hour teaching certification in Vinyasa Flow with Micheline Berry in 2010. To this day I still travel the world attending retreats to practice with her. There is a special bond with your first teacher.
A few years after, I received my 300 hour certification at Asheville Yoga Center. This certification was a deeper dive into the practice and living life with more purpose and intention or more like a “yogi”, or at least trying to. These sessions were weekend workshops. I traveled to Asheville every other month to attend. After, I would return to town fired up with new information and techniques to impart on students in class. It was an awesome way to learn and reinforce the knowledge. It gave me joy to watch students grow as I did.
While competing the second certification I chose to take early retirement. The stars were certainly aligned as I transitioned from a high stress corporate career to instructing yoga. How good can life get! Teaching yoga was not a planned next step in my personal journey but it is ironic how the universe provides.
During all this time, I did practice Ashtanga, not Mysore and not every day, but lead classes. Thank you Jessica for being my teacher. One day in class she announced she would be going to India for a month and there would be a sub. That’s when the light bulb went on in my head and I knew I would go practice in Mysore, India. I wanted to see what this was all about for myself. The trip was a cultural and personal opportunity of a life time. I went without expectations and with an open mind, absorbing it all like a big sponge. I was hooked a second time on this stuff called yoga and knew in some way this would be a much deeper dive into my practice and myself.
Fast forward, I completed the Ashtanga Apprenticeship with Jessica in 2017. I had reached another period where I hungry for more and needed direction in my life. This certification took me to the next level. Ashtanga is truly a guide to live by; the eight limbs of yoga. Whether I am on the mat at the studio or not makes no difference when it comes to honoring these principles. And believe me, being true to yourself and beliefs can be work.
I receive great joy when working one-on-one with students, building a bond and watching their progress. I get very excited when they keep coming back to the practice. One of the best things about Ashtanga is that the process really works. It does detox and heal the body, relaxes the mind and just down right makes me feel good.
I have also met anther amazing teacher and friend. Thank you Jessica for your support, guidance and love.
I hope my story as well as the story of each teacher who has shared, inspires you to follow your heart and passion. Life and this practice are a continuing education and opportunity to grow. I will forever be a student.