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Inspire Convention 2015 - Yuval Avalon

Inspire Convention 2015 – Yuval Avalon

Yuval Avalon er international cirkusartist og performer, med en baggrund indenfor akrobatik og gymnastik. Og så turnerer han verden rundt og underviser I handstand.

What is yoga/handstand all about?

Let me start with the fact that I do not practice any particular type of Yoga.  I’m a handbalancer and circus artist with extensive background in competitive gymnastics.  That said I find many similarities between handstand and Yoga practices in that both explore body/mind control and alignment, through repetition and systematic practice over a long period of time.

Please tell about your path towards practising yoga/handstand. How did you discover yoga / how did yoga/handstand enter your life?

I was introduced to Yoga (Iangar) in 1996 while still competing in gymnastics for the University of Illinoid at Urbana Champaign.  I was fascinated with the connection between my own training in gymnastics and Yoga.

My Yoga teacher Lois Steinberg studied with Iyangar in Pune annually for over 20 years. After I retired from competitive gymnastics, I decided to explore handstand/equilibre as a circus discipline.  My first teacher in this art form was the 70 year old French handstand master Claude Victoria.  Interestingly enough, every practice with him started with an hour long Yoga sequence which he integrated into his own practice and that of his students.

My daily practice for the past 10 years is based on and influenced by my training with Claude.  Since most of my training has been done on my own (without direct guidance of a teacher), most of the knowledge and skill I have acquired over the years was gained through self exploration and practice.

What kind of yoga/handstand do you teach, and how come you ended up with this?

My approach towards teaching handstand is to continually strive for improved alignment and at the same time help my students find the handstand that fits their own bodies, limitations and abilities.

On the one hand I try to teach the illusive “perfect” handstand, yet find it important to compromise in the short run if the body is not ready to perform the ideally aligned handstand.

You teach at Inspire Convention 2015. What to expect if joining your class?

Don’t expect to effortlessly hold a handstand after this class….:-)  That usually takes a long period of time (months/years) of daily practice.  What I will try to do, is provide the participants with a set of tools to take this practice forward, if they chose to go along this path.

How does practicing yoga/handstand affect your life off the mat? What changes have you noticed?:

I would say that the never ending process of self control, improvement and search for exploring my limits as a handstand practitioner, continues to motivate me. Since I’m also a performing artist, my own practice is also geared towards controlling my emotions on stage, as well as express myself artistically. For the last couple of years I’ve also been teaching handstand to hundreds of people around the world and enjoy the fact, that I can share my passion and help people with their own handstands practice.