TEACHER FEATURE: Karen Tan

Karen Tan

Here she is! Karen @ktyz123 is Art of Yoga’s Core Work specialist and is the Artist and Founder behind The Mala Company! All those beautiful mala bracelets and accessories you see in our Retail Wall was designed and put together with love by Karen!

Here is Karen’s story on her yoga journey:

Karen’s first encounter with yoga was in 2003 during her undergrad days. Those days yoga wasn’t as popular as it is today – no fancy props or apparels. Karen signed herself up for her very first yoga session at a community centre. Initially it was purely out of curiosity to find out what yoga was about and she was looking for an alternative ‘exercise’ to complement her distance running trainings. Those once-a-week sessions with her first yoga teacher seemed to cast magic! She felt balanced through the practice – a sense of calmness every time after class. Of the many things she learnt during the initial few years, the most priceless lesson that Karen received from her first yoga teacher was the wisdom of humility, that deep sense of humbleness in ourselves and our practice and how that affects our daily interactions with this world.

As Karen broadened her knowledge about yoga, she was introduced to the practice of Ashtanga yoga in 2012 and was practicing with Nadira Mohsin then. Karen considered herself lucky to have met so many amazing teachers in this journey. While Ashtanga yoga is commonly perceived as an ego trip and a physically demanding practice, Karen never felt that in Nadira’s classes. Again, she learnt humility through her Ashtanga practice with Nad. All of these influences leave deep imprints in Karen’s own practice and teaching till today.

In Karen’s view, yoga practice is not a practice until we know that we are consciously in observance of our actions and thoughts, extending our awareness beyond the mat and asanas, and access that deep connection between our mind and soul. Being humble opens all doors for new knowledge, new perspectives and new discovery in each of our own yoga journey. No one’s path is more superior than another, discover your own path and just keep practicing!

Something fun about Karen:

Karen has a love affair with running since college days! You can occasionally see Karen running along East Coast Park. Say hi to her the next time you see her (*warning: she doesn’t look that friendly when she’s running)!