Sarah Orlowicz is known for creating a comfortable space for her students and focusing on gentle movement and deep relaxation for rebalancing the nervous system and releasing stress. She teaches Restorative Yoga weekly on Sunday at 9:45 a.m. and Wednesday at 6 p.m.
1. How did you get started with yoga?
I was reading a book about someone who was going through a similarly difficult time in her life as I was, and that’s what inspired me to try yoga. I never looked back.
2. What got you hooked?
My first teacher was very down to earth and inspiring. She taught at the perfect physical level (just enough of a challenge) for me and always related yoga philosophies to everyday life. Her name was Teresa Dornellas! There was also a really sweet community at the studio that I had joined.
3. What’s one of your favorite poses/ moves and why?
Any restorative pose!
4. What makes a private studio different/better than a yoga class at the gym?
At a studio, there’s the opportunity to create relationships with teachers and other students more so than at a gym. Also, it’s more likely that some philosophy and spiritual aspects of yoga are integrated into classes, which is appreciated by a lot of people… even those who start out coming just for the workout! There is also an opportunity to experience different types of yoga that may not be available at a gym, like restorative, yoga nidra, kirtan, and special workshops.
5. For someone who’s never tried yoga before, what are the main benefits they may gain from practicing it?
So so much! “Body, Mind, Spirit” is not just a cliché.
6. What styles of yoga do you teach? Besides the style you teach, is there any other you enjoy?
I teach mostly restorative yoga, but also have a background in vinyasa. I enjoy both of those, as well as an occasional class in any other style. I also very often practice a vinyasa-based style of yoga that works directly with the lymphatic system. Exploring and being open to different styles and teachers has been an important part of my yoga journey.
7. Do you do anything else to stay in shape?
I walk the dog a lot… love to hike, play volleyball, and bicycle. I’m not a big fan of “working out” in the traditional sense… I like to play!
8. Who inspires you to stay motivated? How often do you practice when you are not teaching?
I’m so inspired by my teachers, especially Jillian Pransky, and all of my yoga teacher friends that I’ve trained with and met along my journey. I practice (mostly) daily… even if I don’t make it to a class or get a full practice in, I almost always set aside at least 20 minutes for some sort of yoga – sometimes a meditation, a restorative pose, playing my Tibetan bowls, or a short movement practice.
9. How seriously do you take nutrition?
I’ve noticed over the last few years, how much food affects my body in every way every day. Nutrition is definitely a big part of my life. Finding the foods that negatively affect you and cutting them out, can make a huge difference in one’s day to day life. Huge! It’s worth thinking about… diet can have a very significant effect on every aspect of one’s health!
10. What’s an interesting fact about yourself that others may not know?
I’m an artist at heart… I went to school for art, and my home yoga/art studio is one of my favorite spaces to be in. I try to “create” often… It’s very meditative, and I consider it a healing practice as much as yoga. I’m also a professional graphic designer/creative director.
11. Please tell us more about the class you teach at Studio 108.
I teach restorative yoga twice a week at Studio 108. We are lucky to have a plethora of props to “play” with, and a beautiful, warm, safe space that encourages relaxation. Restorative yoga is geared toward making a shift in the nervous system. With the stresses of everyday life, we tend to get stuck in the “stress response.”
Restorative yoga guides us to release tension from the body and allow our autonomic nervous system to shift into the “relaxation response.” The more this practice is done, that more easily we are able to find a place of contentment in our everyday lives. It can be a treat, but is also a legitimate practice for many positive shifts in all aspects of health and wellness! It’s not a lazy practice, as some people assume, and can be more difficult than a challenging vinyasa class. Restorative yoga is something everyone should try, and most people can benefit from doing regularly!