yoga teacher training
Alongside the more intensive courses I’ve taught through my studio since 2006, I’ve been teaching Ayurveda modules for YTTs around Toronto for the past six years: Downward Dog, Yoga Plus, Octopus Garden, Del La Sol in Hamilton, and now this winter: Yogaspace. The YTT format is particularly enjoyable for me, as it brings students who are at a strong transitional moment in life that allows them to consider substantial shifts in self-perception, self-care, and worldview. The ethos and poetry of Ayurveda tends to substantially complement and support their growth in physical and contemplative intelligence.
Because every training is different, I’ve had to develop several tools to accommodate hours requests. I’ve taught in 3, 4, 8, and 12 hour segments within 200-300 hour programmes. At Del La Sol, I teach a 12-hour segment that also covers their lifestyle/nutrition categories. In some places, more extensive programming has been offered in elective format. Next September, for example, 889 will be starting their training and they have invited me to instruct my entire 30-hour introductory course, “Everyday Nectar”. (The full syllabus for this programme is here.) At Yogaspace, I’ve been offering a series of special topics that fold into their Continuing Ed programme.
In the last year, I’ve also started to offer half-price hour-long consultations to the YTT trainees that I work with: this tends to root the presentation material into personal circumstance. At Yogaspace, this involves using their therapy room for a few days. When I teach out of town, I’ll often meet privately with students wherever I’m being billeted.
My goal with Ayurveda, whether I’m mentoring personal students towards doing what I do (I’ve done Ayurvedic consultation with approximately 1000 clients), or teaching in a public setting, or in the context of YTT, is to make the language and attitudes of this very elegant system accessible, demystified, and practical. My presentation style is interactive, and always leaves room for workshop-style digression into any pressing personal or group questions that arise in the moment. I have done my best to activate the pedagogy with powerpoint (keeping eyes up and out of notes), and breaking up data with activity.
Aside from the introductory material (which I condense for YTT hours from the Everyday Nectar syllabus), I also present on special topics in yoga pedagogy:
- “Who’s in Your Class?”: teaching to constitution
- “The Ecology of Movement”: an ayurvedic approach to asana
- “Daily Ayurvedic Support for Yoga Practice”
- “Elemental Rest”: an ayurvedic basis for restorative yoga
This last category is new and exciting for me: this spring, I co-taught a Restorative Yoga Teacher Training with Pat Linfoot at Octopus Garden. I recently published an article about the application of Ayurveda to Restorative, which has garnered good response so far.
I write extensively about Yoga and Ayurveda on my blog: An Ayurvedic View of Cancer, speculations on Steve Jobs’ pancreas and Jack Layton’s bones, and excerpts from a longer work, ayurveda-mala. Scott Petrie and I have also been so bold as to try our hand at rendering Patanjali, with our own “translation” of the Yoga Sutras.
I hope this provides you with a good picture of what I offer. Please get in touch if you would like to add Ayurveda to your YTT programming.
In a world that too often emphasizes busy work schedules, imbalance and disconnection, I found that Everyday Nectar offered concrete and practical ways to retune my awareness towards health and wholeness. I think it would be impossible to be unchanged by the course learning. There are opportunities to make the simple adjustments in your day-to-day experience that may have significant health benefits. Matthew is a caring, knowledgable teacher that creates space for a warm, nourishing inquiry into how ayurveda can positively support our human experience.
– Kelly Anderson, MD
Matthew’s vast knowledge, biting insight and irreverent humour ignite this introduction to Ayurveda. He takes an ancient practice and makes it new again, banging Caraka up against Merleau-Ponty, traditional wisdom against the sparks of intuition, human-made constructs against nature’s pulse, in a rich and compelling study of what it means to live with awareness and integrity in the world. If you let it, this course will touch all aspects of your life, from the pattern of your days to your understanding of yourself and your relationships. – Alix Bemrose, RYT-500
Everyday Nectar with Matthew is a life affirming, life enhancing, and life changing experience. The wisdom shared is rich, deeply relevant for our time, and of practical use for anyone on the path. The material is presented with reverence, dedication and abundant creativity.
– Gary Kezar
Everyday Nectar with Matthew Remski is an in depth, comprehensive first step into the world of Ayurveda. It sets the student up with a strong enough foundation of knowledge and experience to then explore the subtle nature of your their own inner health. I thank Matthew for helping me deepen the relationship between myself and my environment.
– Steve Ferrell
The Everyday Nectar course with Matthew has opened an oceanic world of insightful information for me. The wealth of Ayurvedic principles, knowledge and integrating lifestyle practices presented, has initiated a deeper awareness of my body’s inner intelligence, beneficial change and a loving relationship with self. It’s a true blessing and has made a positive impact in my life. I’m looking so forward to diving deeper.– Nadia Vallescura
Matthew brings a rare intelligence and poetic sensibility to his teaching of Ayurveda. Always attentive to modern applications and contemporary context, his classes encompass a riveting dialogue between different times, places and ways of knowing. He makes Ayurveda feel at once intuitive and familiar, while at the same time, offering it as a way think about and experience the the world in radical new ways.– Katherine Friesen