Friday, February 17, 2006


My Bio

"Anything you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it."
~ Goethe

I grew up in St. Louis, MO and moved to the Bay Area to attend art school when I was 20.  I discovered yoga in 1989, when I was invited by a friend to a class at The Yoga Room in Berkeley for a class with renowned teacher Rodney Yee. Immediately drawn to the challenges, the philosophy, and the discipline of this practice that paralleled that of artmaking, My curiosity was forever stoked! 

Years of practice have taken me down various paths with extraordinary teachers. I have been most influenced by my early studies and friendship with Rodney Yee; intensive studies with David Life and Sharon Gannon of Jivamukti in New York City; Yin yoga with Sarah Powers; and the teachings of the 8 Limb Path of Ashtanga as taught by lineage bearer, Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, his descendants and torch bearers and other teachers who have been authorized to teach this magnificently rewarding yoga practice. Daily Ashtanga Mysore Practice is my primary practice as a student and informs my methods as a teacher of the traditional series as well as Vinyasa Flow classes. 

I completed my first 200 hour teacher training with Yoga Studio Mill Valley in 2002 and have participated in a variety of other teacher trainings with the above teachers and other prominent teachers around the globe. I teach classes infused with philosophy and teachings from the ancient yogic texts along with other wisdom traditions. I offer this within the context of a challenging physical practice with both specificity and respect to these traditions as well as with broad strokes to expose the common ground these traditions share. I give with generosity of spirit, taking each student's individual abilities and needs in mind. Classes present deep asana sequences that connect breath to movement and invite inquiry within our explorations together.

Striking a balance between yoga, creating art, enjoying music, exploring the world's natural wonders with friends and family, travel, writing, outdoor adventure and recreation, and enjoying the simple moments with quiet and attentive reverence is my life's path.

Come join me on this journey of discovery! 



Mary Corbin Art

Mary Corbin Writes

Momma Wheelie

Where in the World are Tom and Mary


Yoga Classes with Mary Corbin

"Happiness is not something ready made. 
It comes from your own actions."
~ Lhamo Thondup, the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet

I am not teaching public classes at this time but am available for private lessons for individuals or groups. Below is a sample of previous classes and workshops taught in the Bay Area from 2001 - 2015.  Thank you for your dedication and see you on the mat!

FOCUS of the Year: The Brahmaviharas
Unconditional love becomes possible when you practice cultivating the four states of mind known as the Brahmaviharas. Collectively, these four qualities of friendliness or loving kindness (metta), compassion (karuna), joy (mudita), and equanimity (upekkha) are the qualities of true, authentic, and unconditional love.


Philosophy: The first Yama, AHIMSA (Non-harming)

Asana: Standing poses - Let's get grounded again

"When the power of love overcomes the love of power,
the world will know peace." ~ Jimi Hendrix

I am a former yoga teacher at the following Bay Area studios:

Mountain Yoga, Oakland CA
Inner Heat Yoga, Berkeley CA
Ironworks Berkeley
Touchstone Climbing, Concord CA
Seventh Heaven Yoga, Berkeley CA
Yoga Mandala, Berkeley CA
World Yoga, Walnut Creek CA
Namaste Yoga, Oakland CA
Yoga Kula, Berkeley CA
Swan Yoga, Pt. Richmond CA

Here is my current teaching schedule for 2015:

Vinyasa Flow, Level 3 (Advanced Level students only)
Tues/Thurs:  9:30 - 11 am

Backroads, Berkeley
Mixed Level Vinyasa Flow for Staff
Mon/Wed/and sometimes Fri
Noon - 1 pm
(This is a private class but drop-ins are welcome if you are
currently a regular student in one of my other local classes.
Contact Mary before coming to class. Bring your own mat)

My classes are based on a cyclical schedule that focuses on one area for a month at a time. Dedication to participation in the series is the most effective, though not mandatory method, to enjoying my classes. Drop-in attendance is always welcome and rewarding in its own way. 

Jan - Ahimsa / Standing (grounding) poses
Feb - The other Yamas: Satya, Asteya, Brahmacharya, Aparigraha   
          Deep Twists and heart openers, Backbends, Hips Part 1
Mar - Sauca / Twists, Backbends
Apr - The other Niyamas: Santosha, Tapas, Svadhyaya, Isvara Pranidhana / 
          Backbends, Hips Part 1
May - The Yoga Sutras, Book One / Hips Part 2
June- The Yoga Sutras, Book One cont./The Bandhas / Core Strength and Kriyas
July- The Yoga Sutras, Book Two / Balancing poses
Aug - Chants and Mantras / Inversions 1 and Neck/Shoulders
Sep - The Yoga Sutras, Book Three / Mantra/ Inversions 2
Oct - The Eight Limbs of Yoga /Navaratri/ Chant:  Spine (Backbends)
Nov - The Chakras / Corresponding poses and Creating a Balanced Practice 1
Dec - The Koshas / Meditation, Kriyas, and Creating a Balanced Practice 2


Private sessions are available
Mon - Sat
schedule your time with me by email

I will be subbing for the following classes:

Subbing for me:

Contact me anytime with questions or permissions to advanced level classes or to inquire about private instruction, study materials and recommendations. 


Yoga Workshops and Retreats

Daily Meditation:


Making Padmasana Possible: Opening the Lotus
$35, pre-registration by Nov 1 $40, after Nov 1st (must register by Friday Nov 6) 

Sunday, Nov 8, 2009, 2 - 4:30 pm (this workshop will be repeated in Spring) 

Yogic texts say Padmasana, or Lotus Pose, cures all disease and awakens Kundalini. In more tangible terms, this classic yoga pose stretches and stimulates the hips, knees, and ankles while creating the optimal seat for meditation and pranayama. But this pose can remain elusive to the seasoned practitioner and the curious beginner alike.

In this workshop, we will access this pose by approaching our practice with care and curiosity. We will start with a brief but warming vinyasa practice followed by an attentive progression of hip openers, as well as preparation of knees and ankles with or without props, and slowly build to the crescendo of Padmasana. Appropriate for all levels of students.

Contact Mountain Yoga to register. 

The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali 
Sun, April 29, 2007, 1-4 pm 

Mountain Yoga, Oakland 

What do the ancient texts of the Yoga Sutras have to do with perfecting your downward dog? How can I do yoga even when I’m not involved in a movement practice? In this workshop we will use the Eight-Limb path of Patanjali yoga as a framework in which to explore this wonderful body of work. We will enjoy a flowing vinyasa practice, extended explorations of sacred chant, pranayama (breath work),and meditation. We will also discuss selected sutras as they relate to these practices. Our intention will be to awaken an awareness of Classical Yoga and sweeten our experience of yoga as a daily living practice. 

Contact Mountain Yoga to register. 

DON’T HESITATE  by Mary Oliver

If you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy,

don’t hesitate.  Give in to it.  There are plenty 

of lives and whole towns destroyed or about

 to be.  We are not wise, and not very often kind.  

And much can never be redeemed.

Still, life has some possibility left.  Perhaps this

Is its way of fighting back, that sometimes

Something happens better than all the riches

Or power in the worlds.  It could be anything,

But very likely you notice it in the instant

When love begins.  Anyway, that’s often the

case.  Anyway, whatever it is, don’t be afraid

Of its plenty.  Joy is not made to be a crumb.


Yoga Resources


The following are materials that parallel my classes. This is also a helpful resource for serious yoga students seeking a broader experience of the ancient and esoteric practices of Yoga. 
Dig in!


Planetwalker by John Francis
A Natural History of the Senses by Diane Ackerman
Bicycle Diaries by David Byrne
The Geography of Bliss by Eric Weiner
Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer


Light on Yoga, BKS Iyengar 
The Iyengar Way: an Illustrated Guide, S,M & S Mehta 
Ashtanga Yoga: The Practice Manual, David Swenson 
Yoga Mala, Sri K. Pattabhi Jois 
The Art of Yoga, David Life and Sharon Gannon 
Anatomy of Hatha Yoga , H. David Coulter 
Yin Yoga (Taoist Yoga): Outline of a Quiet Practice, Paul Grilley 
Anatomy of Movement , Calais-Germaine 
Theories of the Chakras: Bridge to Higher Consciousness, Hiroshi Motoyama 
Healing Mantras, Thomas Ashley-Farrand 
Jivamukti Yoga: Practices for Liberation of Body and Soul, David Life/Sharon Gannon 
Moving into Stillness, Erich Schiffman 
The Heart of Yoga, TKV Desikachar 
Light on Life, BKS Iyengar 
Yoga Body, Buddha Mind, Cyndi Lee 

A Path with Heart, Jack Kornfield 
A Heart as Wide as the World, Sharon Salzberg 
Vipassana Meditation as taught by SN Goenka, Wm. Hart 
Zen Mind, Beginners Mind , Shunryu Suzuki 
The Art of Happiness, His Holiness the Dalai Lama 
Inner Revolution, Robert Thurman 
Peace is Every Step, Thich Nhat Hanh 
The Miracle of Mindfulness, Thich Nhat Hanh 
Be Here Now, Ram Dass Still Here, Ram Dass 
Uncomfortable with Uncertainty, Pema Chodron 
The Essential Ken Wilbur, Ken Wilbur 
Yoga and the Quest for the True Self, Stephen Cope 

Light on Yoga, BKS Iyengar 
Light on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, BKS Iyengar 
    note: there are many other translations 
Light on Pranayama, BKS Iyengar 
The Bhagavad Gita , E. Easwaran 
    note: there are many other translations, and Easwaran has translated several other classsical texts Hatha Yoga Pradipika, Swami Muktibodhananda 
    note: there is a multitude of books published from the Bihar School in India
    along with the Pradipika 
Essence of Yoga, Bouanchard 
The Shambala Guide to Yoga, Georg Feurstein 
The Essential Rumi, translations by Coleman Barks 

Planetwalker, John Francis 
We Are the Ones We Have Been Waiting For, Alice Walker 
Reason for Hope, Jane Goodall 
The Legacy of Luna, Julia Butterfly Hill 
Let Me Stand Alone, the journals of Rachel Corrie 
The Way of Compassion, an anthology from Satya Magazine

Yoga and Vegetarianism, Sharon Gannon 
Ayurveda: the Science of Self-Healing, Dr. Vasant Lad 
Diet for a New America, John Robbins 
Conscious Eating, Gabriel Cousens 
Spiritual Nutrition, Gabriel Cousens Animal Liberation, Peter Singer

Tales of Wonder, Huston Smith 
The Size of the World, Jeff Greenwald 
The Green Collar Economy, Van Jones
Learning to Breathe, Alison Wright 
Eat, Pray,Love, Elizabeth Gilbert 
How We Live Our Yoga, personal stories edited by Valerie Jeremijenko 

Yogi Times 
Yoga International 
Satya Magazine 
The Sun 
PETA's Animal Times 
Shambala Sun 
Yoga Journal 


Fierce Grace,a documentary on the life and work of Ram Dass 
Baraka, a documentary by Ron Fricke, a montage of multi-cultural ritual 
Ashtanga: the Primary Series with Richard Freeman, video 
The Spiritual Path of Social and Political Activism, audio CD, David Life 
Chants from India, audio CD, Ravi Shankar 
Live on Earth, audio CD, Kirtan with Krishna Das 
Jaya Bhagavan, Shimshai and Tina Malia 
Stay Human, Michael Franti 

Mary's PlayList - Music from my Classes (coming soon!) 


Sri K. Pattabhi Jois/Ashtanga in India 
Sarah Powers 
Rodney Yee 
Michael Franti 
Jai Uttal 
Shiva Rea

Tuesday, February 14, 2006


My Other Websites

Mary Corbin Writes

Mary Corbin Art

Momma Wheelie

Where in the World are Tom and Mary


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