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Heather (Morton) van Hettema is a teacher and the founder of The Yoga Way turned mother and writer.

The journey of yoga has inspired Heather to make 19 sojourns over 19 years to India.  It has been an unexpected evolution with no prior background in exercise or knowledge of yoga. Over these years, she studied and trained under many gurus and masters of yoga and founded a niche yoga school. Her unique teaching style is a natural extension from her private practice. Heather has a rare talent in taking students progressively into the postures and places an importance on individual practice. Her motivation to go deeper has ‘indirectly’ inspired students to seek their own real path of yoga.   

 

Beyond the Posture

Flashback to 1999,  Heather first travelled to India after obtaining yoga teacher certificates from Sivananda yoga.  A turning point in her path still lies in studying under K. Pattabhi Jois in Mysore, India.  She was one among only a few students and learned the primary series of Ashtanga yoga directly under him. Ironically, she grew addicted to many of the advanced postures while seeking to overcome an injury. But true to the path, her practice moved beyond the postures and into the fuller picture that real yoga is.  With each extended trip to India, she explored the other realms of yoga. As a student of meditation, she has been initiated into the Himalayan Tradition of Yoga Meditation by the late Swami Veda Bharati in 2009. At present, she trains with Yogacharya Vinay Kumar;  practicing a Hatha yoga vinyasa system in Mysore. Heather’s studies eventually landed her at the feet of Shri BNS Iyengar (Guruji), one of the few living masters within the Krishnamacharya lineage.  To date, she holds many teaching qualifications including from Guruji. Ultimately, a more balanced practice and lifestyle truly began after the loss of her initial pregnancy and later giving birth to her beloved son in 2013.

 

Inspiration  

Heather is the producer of dvds and cds.  Freedom of the Body dvd is one of the first instructional dvds to share the practices of yoga back bending.  It has inspired and motivated students all over the globe.  To her credit, she is the author of a 2-year ethnographic research project on Yoga for children in the educational system.  Heather also self-published, Yoga Essentials: Back Bending Basics, a practice manual on back bending.  

 

Today, Heather teaches privately and offers yoga retreats.  

How I Came to Yoga

Without any formal training, I rented a space in a Lutheran church in Seoul to teach yoga. What lead me to do this is a mystery. I thought teaching yoga might be a good way to get into shape, become healthy and answer some of my deeper questions. I generally approached yoga from the stand-point of, “Let’s get a good workout”.

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The Yoga Way ~ Heather

Described as the ‘real deal’ by the Toronto Life magazine, Heather founded The Yoga Way school to provide structured classes and more intimate teaching. Not offering drop-ins was the premise in helping students build a self-practice of yoga.

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