YAA Interview: Johann Kotze
3. What style of yoga do you teach?
Trained in Sivananda Yoga.
4. Where do you teach?
From my home studio in Muizenberg. And I still have a practice in Stellenbosch.
5. How long have you been practicing yoga?
About 22 years.
6. How long have you been teaching yoga?
About 20 years.
7. Who have you trained with and where?
8. What lead you to teaching yoga and at what point did you decide that you wanted to teach?
I was born to teach,I taught myself from a book, started teaching and then knew I wanted to pursue a formal qualification too. Fortunately for me, I learned from the best, Swami Parvati and Mother Yogesh.
9. What do you love most about teaching?
For myself the positive pranic connection that opens up when I teach. From a job perspective and a teachers one, the fact that the teachings are truly useful, practically, and philosophically.
10. Is there a focus in your teaching style?
I relate to a personal, probably quite universal form of straightforward hatha yoga. Nothing fancy, simple, do-able, challenging, therapeutic, holistically integrated.
11. What do you love most about yoga?
Everything. It is so complete. It is the most advanced system of personal development on the planet.
12. What is the greatest challenge you have overcome with the help of yoga?
It helped me to shift a fair amount and degree of negativity, depression, melancholia – personal stuff like that.
13. What advice do you have for people who have never tried yoga?
Classes and teachers are so different. To begin on a suitable level, i.e. don’t go to and advanced style if it’ll let you feel inadequate, don’t go to a spiritual class if you hate that kind of thing and look for a second or third option if you didn’t like the first try. The right teacher for the right person hooks that person for life.
14. Do you have a regular practice?
I live, eat and sleep yoga awareness and consciousness 24/7. I have done at least a few minutes of yoga most days of my life for over 20 years. So, moderate, consistent self-practice.
Headstand and warrior. I love pranayama.
16. Least favourite asana?
Not really. My range isn’t that huge though, there are probably a lot of postures I don’t practice though.
17. Any religious affiliations?
Hmm. Anything non-facist interests me, I like the mystical, agnostic teachings, yoga philosophy.
18. What are your other interests?
I am starting to get success with my ambient music and moved to Muizenberg to be next to the ocean.
19. Any thank yous?
Every person out there that I interacted with meaningfully has helped me to understand myself and others more. I love my students and in later years came to appreciate the Ananda Kutir upbringing more and more.