A natural-born dancer and incredibly inspiring yoga mentor, Raina believes that our bodies are our vehicle on this earth, and that once we are able to realize our full embodiment we will find connection and have full access to our human experience. She sees yoga as an invitation for us to experience all the aspects of our humanity, through awareness of breath and presence.
Raina’s perspective on yoga comes from years of practice, sitting in the seat of studentship, and working out her everyday struggles on her mat. Raina’s background as a dancer lends her love of movement to yoga. She believes as a dancer you are creating a story through your movement and that with yoga as we begin to move our own personal story begins to unfold. Practicing yoga gave Raina a sense of joy and reconnected her to her power, which comes from within. Yoga helped develop her strength and resilience in challenging situations. When Raina made the connection between doing yoga and accessing her true power source she knew that this would become a lifelong practice. Raina felt a calling to share these profoundly transformative tools with others.
In 2016 she decided to do her first 200-hour Yoga teacher training. Through becoming a yoga teacher, Raina sought to create healing spaces for people to be able to reconnect with their authentic experience and find liberation in their lives. She also noticed a lack of diversity in the yoga teacher community and wished to become certified so that she could reach people from all backgrounds and walks of life.
Raina currently works at several different studios and gyms in Austin, TX, where she was voted Best Yoga Instructor for 2018 by Austin Fit Magazine. She teaches at Lifetime Fitness, Bear Creek Performance Training, The Paramount Theatre, and Sanctuary Yoga, a non-profit studio that offers donation-based classes to provide support for the Amala Foundation, which encourages youth development and leadership. With a continued zest for learning Raina completed her 300-hour teacher training in the Fall of 2018. As part of her 300-hour teacher training Raina completed modules in various forms of yoga, including Community Action Yoga, Trauma-informed Yoga, Chakra System Training, advanced asana and anatomy, Yin Yoga, Neuroscience of Yoga, and Ayurvedic Training. Raina will be co-leading a Trauma-informed Yoga Teacher Training in 2020 with Waking Yoga at Yoga Yoga Westgate.
In all of her classes, Raina teaches students to slow down and be fully in their body to experience the authentic and innate joy that arises when we peel the layers of expectation and agenda off and invite ourselves to breathe and experience the present moment we are in just as we are. She adapts her classes accordingly to support students of all levels from the “never taken class before” to the experienced practitioners. She believes that yoga is for everybody, regardless of age, body type, and ability level, “If you can breathe, you can do yoga,” says Raina.
The benefits of yoga for Raina’s students go beyond the physical. For people who are anxious, who suffer from sleep issues, who feel cluttered or isolated and disconnected from their community, yoga offers a change of dynamics. It’s a way to clear out space, access the full potential of one’s mind, and bring energy and vibrancy to a depressed or run-down state. Raina’s classes cultivate a sense of community and help people to connect to one another. In her classes, she teaches yoga as a tool for self-regulation: the act of bringing awareness to what is arising in the body and mind in a stressful or triggering situation and to learn to pause and react in a healthy way. With Raina, practicing yoga becomes a healing place. Above all, Raina aims to provide the space and opportunity for students to reconnect with their personal power and encourage students to be courageous enough to live the life they want, in alignment with who they are.
Join Raina for one of her yoga experiences to discover new levels of liberation, mindfulness, and empowerment!