Peter Christou, The Yoga Lounge, Canmore, Alberta

Peter Christou

Yoga Teacher

I got interested in yoga later in life. I had been very active and athletic when I was younger and by the time I was 40 I was going through many changes in my personal life and my body had started to break down.

I had always been intrigued by yoga. The fact that it had been around so long and was still relevant said to me that there was something here worth investigating.

After trying a couple of classes I had the opportunity to practice all the aspects of Ashtanga yoga with Rameen Peyrow in one of his epic 10-day workshops/intensives and I was hooked.

I’ve been so fortunate to have had the opportunity to practice with, learn from and strike personal friendships with so many great Ashtanga teachers. Rameen, Jeff and Harmony Lichty, Mark Darby and Tim Miller come to mind immediately but there are so many more. I was also fortunate enough to spend a couple weeks practicing pranayama with Sri O.P. Tawarri. I can hear the words of all my teachers coming out of me when I teach and in my head when I practice.

I became aware of the holistic qualities of Ashtanga yoga both the physically and mentally very early in my practice. It has served me very well in the last 15 years. I have the student venture inwards by focusing on breath and bandhas making the practice a moving meditation. So many people get so fixated on posture and wanting to get posture that they forget or never learn of the meditative side of the practice. In the words of Pattabhi Jois, “Ashtanga yoga is not the practice of asana, it is the practice breath.”

On a more personal side, I was blessed to be born and raised in Banff and have lived here my whole life. I love spending time in the mountains with my wife and family no matter what the season.

Special shout out to Jacqui Cain, Nicole Beaudry, Mindy Johnstone and Jeff Mah for believing in me as a teacher.