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Meet The Survivalist. The Yogi. The Creator.

Essdras M. Suarez

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It All Began…

When I was a six-year old, my uncle would encourage me to read old musty books-ranging from philosophy to yoga. 

By the time I was 13, my uncle, who had become my second dad, noticed I had done enough sitting around. Insinuating I should become more active, he gifted me the Charles Atlas Dynamic Tension. At the time that was exactly what I needed to stop lying around and become more active. Little did I know that one book could spark the beginning of a new lifestyle.

Once, I got a taste for being physically fit. It became a part of my life and of my daily routine. From that moment on, I make sure that exercise plays a role in my day to day life -be it running, lifting, martial arts, rock climbing, and rowing.

In 1995, I took my first Ashtanga yoga class in Denver. And just like every good alpha male who’s ever been invited to a yoga class. The first thing I noticed was how all the women in the class could hold poses like Downward Facing Dog far longer than I could. I was intrigued. So, I went back a couple more times until I hurt one of my shoulders. It took me months to recover but when I came back, I forced myself to listen to the instructor and to try to understand what exactly allowed these waif-like femmes to do things, I self-proclaimed uber-fit Mr Strong, could not do. I eventually learned it wasn’t about muscle but instead about body mechanics and about letting go. That was quite an epiphany- that I am still working on understanding to this day. 

In 2005, I hurt myself once more. This time through martial arts. I couldn’t do weights, and I had to be very careful while practicing Ninpo Tai-Jutsu, the style in which I hold a black belt. But what I could do was yoga. Eventually, I started spending so much time in the yoga studio. My wife told me, “This is getting ridiculous. Why don’t you just get certified and teach it!” 

I became certified through Yoga Fit in 2006. I tried teaching that way for about six months and even though, I’d learned quite a bit through that training. I found myself relying back on knowledge acquired through my many years of martial arts and other physical conditioning activities. By then I had also gotten certified in a myriad of fitness programs including personal training.

Eventually in 2008, I realized I had deviated so far away from the traditions of Ashtanga, and the more modern Yoga Fit style of teaching, I could no longer call what I was doing by those names.

Thus, visYoga was born into the ever-evolving physical conditioning system that it is today. 

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