For Vivi teaching is a way of sharing the richness of life’s journey. Anusara Yoga lays the foundation for a healthy body firmly grounded on this earth, and inspires the heart to align with its highest essence. A journey that both respects and frees us from our physical limitations, engages the minds deepest thinking, and brings us to the joy of the heart, is a journey worth delving into. This is the experience that Vivi loves to share with her students and friends. In the words of her Anusara teacher, John Friend, “we practice so we can bring more beauty to this world.”
Vivi has lived her life in just this way. Curious and excited as a child she discovered philosophy, Indian thought and Buddhism through books borrowed from a small library in her native Greece. At 17 she moved to California, where she completed her studies in aeronautical engineering, theater, dance and film, and then went on to become a film director/producer for two decades.
For over 20 years she has practiced and taught many styles of yoga from hatha to ashtanga. And she has been deeply touched by the teachings of her Zen teacher, Tenshin Reb Anderson, who is considered “one of the rare living zen masters today.” Rebs words point to the way we are all inter-connected, and remind us that “enlightenment is the way we help each other.”
After 22 years in San Francisco, Vivi and her husband Eraj left their respective careers in film-making and high-tech marketing to come to Greece and establish NYSY Studios, a lively center in the heart of Athens where people meet to practice Yoga, Zen meditation, and Pilates.
Their goal is to be a great support for people to find their true, joyful and compassionate self. Especially now, in times of challenge, Vivi and Eraj are inspired by their beloved yoga teacher and friend, Rusty Wells, whose life-style and philosophy encompasse the essence: “Let Love In, Let Love Out!”
Discovering yoga in the 80s, Vivi feels immense gratitude for her first teacher Kali Ray who illuminated the path of Tri-Yoga, a beautiful flowing vinyasa style of yoga. Asthanga was the next discovery with senior teacher, Tim Miller being a true inspiration in dynamic practice. Having the good fortune to study with many inspirational yoga teachers, she is blessed to have heard the simply powerful words of her beloved teacher and friend, Rusty Wells: “Be Kind, Be Love!” And to be motivated by such vibrant teachers as Anusaras Desiree Rumbaugh, who stands firmly for what she believes: “Love is Stronger than fear.” Vivi found her true teaching voice in Anusara yoga. Anusara has offered her a powerful, all-encompassing method to teach yoga, and an effective way to touch people in a positive, uplifting, and healing way. She offers teacher John Friend her eternal gratitude for sharing this wonderful way with the world, and for being a constant source of guidance and support.
For over 20 years, Vivi followed her zen teacher Tenshin Reb Anderson in meditation retreats and marveled and the profundity of his teachings. If she was a better zen student she would have been enlightened by now, but not wanting to miss the opportunity of studying with this rare master, she keeps staring at the blank wall…
Reb, meanwhile, keeps giving away the secret to Enlightenment:
“it is the way we help each other; the intricate way through which we are all inter-connected.”
Vivis training in Pilates includes studies with the Physical Mind Institute, Ellie Herman Pilates, and BASI Pilates, a system she has grown to love and teach with great enthusiasm.
She teaches classes and privates daily, and her highest joy is to see students empowered, healthy, and uplifted. Also, to see the team of teachers & administration at NYSY & BASI growing harmoniously to support each other and the community.
Vivi believes that the key to good pilates is good training. Thus she has worked hard to bring the BASI Pilates Teacher Training programs at NYSY. In an effort to support pilates teachers to continue learning, Vivi spearheads the annual Athens Pilates Symposium, a fun, experiential, and highly educational international Pilates conference, one of the most successful in Europe. And she oversees the new workshop for pilates teachers, “Skills in Excellency.”