Hannah Faulkner Roman - Half Moon Yoga And Art Interview
Updated: Jan 9, 2022
Hannah Faulkner Roman
Half Moon Yoga And Art
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Yoga teacher Hannah unites her passions on Half Moon Yoga and Art.
She’s an adventurer, artist, and writer who draws inspiration from her surroundings to create and engaging blog.
She further creates balanced, fun, intellectual, refreshing yoga sequences that take you on far away imaginary journeys while also teaching deeper yoga philosophy and wellness concept.
How did you first get into pilates or yoga?
About ten years ago I was serving tables at a charming French restaurant. One of my regular customers had just started teaching yoga and invited me to attend her class in the park. I had previously tried yoga on Nintendo wii and as a college course in an auditorium, but I hadn’t tried yoga in the park. I felt so peaceful and balanced afterwards that I kept coming back each week. I eventually started taking many more classes at her yoga studio down the street from my place and dove into the practice. Now, I’m a yoga instructor.
In the last five years, what new belief, behavior, or habit has most improved your life?
Popular contemporary yoga can emphasize a great workout, while Restorative Yoga focuses on restoring the parasympathetic nervous system and deepening stretches. When I am already exhausted from a long day of hiking or traveling, nothing feels better than to set myself up into Legs up the Wall pose and clear my mind with long exhales.
What is your proudest moment/accomplishment in pilates or yoga?
In 2017, I was invited to teach a yoga class at the first International Yoga Convention in Amorgos, Greece. I created an interesting sequence and taught the class called The Yoga of Alignment and Philosophy in Ancient Greek Sculpture. We flowed through variations of traditional yoga poses that looked like famous sculptures. I wove in quotes from Greek philosophers like Seneca, “True happiness is…to enjoy the present without anxious dependence on the future.” Also, from the father of modern day yoga, BKS Iyengar, when he affirmed, “Working on our alignment is like sculpting in which a piece of stone is constantly shaped and refined, but here the sculpture, the sculptor, and the act of sculpting is one and the same.” It felt amazing to share so many connections about the mind, body and spirit.
How has a failure, or apparent failure, set you up for later success? Do you have a “favourite failure” of yours?
About five years ago, I was laid off from my Art and Yoga teacher position at a charter elementary school. This opportunity allowed me time to create my website, blog, and start teaching my own yoga classes.
What is one of the best or most worthwhile investments you’ve ever made?
Investing my time and money in traveling the world has taught me about religion, philosophy, myself, and humankind.
Do you think there is any trait that all exercise practitioners share?
Self-discipline. We all have a drive and a strong will to take care of our bodies through movement.
What is the most significant thing that someone much younger than yourself has taught you?
My one-year-old daughter teaches me to be present in the moment and flexible with “my time.” Change is the only constant.
Do you like classical or contemporary pilates/yoga more? Why?
I think it’s healthy to practice a variety of different styles. There’s so much to learn from Hatha Yoga, Vinyasa, Iyengar, Ashtanga, Kundalini, Hot Yoga, Restorative, Yin, Jivamukti, Anusara, Aerial, Acro, etc.
What advice would you give to people wanting to start pilates or yoga?
Start with a beginner class. Listen to your body. It’s about the connection and inner journey. Notice how you feel, not how each pose looks. Find the place between comfort and ease. Breathe deeply. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Yoga is not a competition. Use props for as long as you need to.
Tell us about someone you admire and why you admire them?
My Breatharian mentor, Ray Maor, taught me about the power of the mind and breath.
What is a 'hack' you have for success that most people don't know about?
Manifesting is a powerful tool that is rarely discussed. Our thoughts from the past and present attract our future. Begin with gratitude and witness your dreams unfolding.
How would you describe pilates/yoga in 1 word?
Unity: connection of mind, body, and spirit
What's something exciting you're currently working on/learning that only a few people know about?
I’m writing a memoir about my solo yoga journey around the world, with and without food.
Most satisfying experience practicing yoga/pilates?
On the banks of the holy Ganges river at the International Festival of Yoga 2017, I had my first magical experiences with Kundalini awakening.
Most embarrassing experience practicing yoga/pilates?
When my pants are too loose and they begin to slide down.
What are your biggest pet peeves about the culture/community of your chosen practice?
There's a common misperception about yoga when gynist bikini models post poses on social media. However, yoga is really for all shapes and sizes.
What is your favourite thing about the culture and community of your chosen practice?
I love saying "namaste" to everyone, meaning "the divine light within me honors the light within you." Also, we share the guidelines, outlined by Patanjali, for living towards enlightenment (Eight Limbed Path). They are not requirements, but as yogis delve deeper into the practice they may gravitate towards these lifestyle similarities. Many yogis are familiar with the term, Ahimsa, meaning to not harm or kill; this suggestion has guided many of us towards a vegetarian or vegan diet.
Do you tend to use a lot of different equipment when you practice? Why/Why not?
One of my favorite aspects of yoga is that I can take it anywhere. All I really need is my body to build strength, flexibility, and balance. My favorite place to practice is out in the open air of the bay park. I also believe that blocks, straps, and walls are extremely helpful for beginners to better understand each pose and find the perfect stretch.