Amy Leydon reads bodies… “As much as we often hate to admit it, everyone has an achilles heel,” says Boston-based yoga instructor Amy Leydon. “The hard part often isn’t finding out what it is, rather it’s figuring out how to strengthen and protect it.” She’s a big advocate of interludes at certain points in practice -pausing to acknowledge and evaluate whether “what works for ‘everyone’ is really serving you“. For nearly fifteen years, Amy has been employing her alignment intuition and extensive yoga and movement training to guide her students (privately and in group settings) to honor these vulnerable points so that they might enjoy greater ease and growth on the mat. We caught up with Amy on the heels of her headlining performance in Hyannis at the Love Yoga Festival.
Along with her vast background in our ancient-eight limbed practice, Amy is a certified movement and postural analyst and the the creator of Postural Yoga a healing method in which the instructor “reads” bodies keeping ears and eyes glued for misalignment.
Through genetics and habitual patterns, we are all in misalignment. These imbalances are a big cause of chronic pain in the body and will eventually lead to injury. This work can alleviate your chronic pain, rehabilitate and prevent injuries, enhance performance, and help you feel more comfortable and confident in your own yoga practice.” This blend of tailored strength training, stretching, and massage (the three pillars of Postural Yoga) coupled with breathing and meditation exercises, gives rise to what Amy calls the the most effective healing modality out there.
Beloved by many in and around the Back Bay for her clever sequencing and highly curated playlists, Amy can be found teaching open classes at Exhale and Equinox in addition to the workshops and retreats she leads throughout the country. Join Amy this winter for a yoga adventure at the Osa Peninsula in Costa Rica, and keep current with her on Instagram and Facebook. Private Postural Yoga sessions at Balans Wellness Center in Boston can be arranged through her website, Amy Leydon Yoga.
“In the great green room, there was a telephone, and a red balloon, and a picture of a cow jumping over the moon…” When Amy is not prospecting new tracks for her playlists, she is likely reading another genre – on the trail of her three year old son whom she refers to as her “guru”.
wind up… how do you wind up, prepare for the week ahead?
I always hit Whole Foods and the Boston Public Market. My schedule is tight and I have a three year old. If I don’t stock up on healthy foods on Monday, we won’t eat well all week.
and, when you need to exhale… what’s your other direction?
Wine and Netflix.
what three things are you never without?
Lip stuff, water… and, a hairband around my wrist.
the sound of music… you have room for 5 tracks on your playlist, they are?
This is so hard to answer. I go through lots of musical phases and get obsessed with certain songs and bands. But these songs keep coming back to my playlist time and time again.
1. Shine on you Crazy Diamond… Pink Floyd
2. This River… JJ Grey and Mofro
3. Choice… East Forest
4. Gale Song… Lumineers
5. Cease to Know… Eluvium
could you repeat that? one cue that you regularly share with your students, and the story behind it…
“Allow your shoulders lift up towards your ears.” Many students have learned to always pull their shoulderblades down their spine. When you lift your arms overhead, that pulling down of the shoulderblades limits movement and doesn’t allow full extension of the lattissimus dorsi muscles. Students can find more ease and range of motion if they allow their shoulders to lift a bit when they reach up. Once they get their arms up, they can gently draw the shoulder blade down the back a bit.
your bible… what one book have you most often give as a gift?
Goodnight Moon, by Margaret Wise Brown
finish the sentence? i’d like to teach the world to…
sing in perfect harmony.