Translator: Taylor Cazella
Kumiko Mack is the owner of Be Yoga Japan, a yoga studio located in Tokyo’s Minami-azabu district. As the foremost teacher of ISHTA Yoga in Japan, she leads both 200 and 500 hour instructor training courses that are registered with the Yoga Alliance, in addition to giving a wide variety of workshops. A resident of New York since 1987, Kumiko continues to study Tantra under her teacher, Alan Finger, founder of ISHTA Yoga, and was bestowed the title of Yogiraj from Alan in 2011.
To start, can you tell us a bit about your upbringing?
I was born and raised in Japan. I studied abroad in America when I was in high school, and I graduated from college in Japan. After that, I got married and moved to New York.
How many years have you been teaching yoga?
It’s going on 15 years now.
How exactly did you switch over to taking training classes for the purpose of teaching yoga so that you could learn teaching methods in detail?
At the start, I really didn’t have an interest in teaching yoga. I liked doing yoga, and it was only yoga that I wanted to do. When I moved back to Japan on account of my former husbands work there were very few yoga studios, and, with that in mind, I decided to open Be Yoga Japan. And so, I switched over to yoga training and teaching.
Can you tell us about Be Yoga’s Teacher Training Course?
We are offering a 200-hour instructor training course which conforms to the standards set by the American Yoga Alliance, a 300-hour advanced level training course, and a training course on maternity yoga. In addition to that, we also offer workshops such as yoga after childbirth, and methods for teaching yoga to seniors.
Please tell us about the style of yoga you teach.
I teach Ishta Yoga; it’s a school of yoga founded by Alan Finger and his father, Mani Finger. Ishta means “individual.” Each person’s disposition, constitution and physique is different. We match that particular person, and teach methods of exercise and meditation necessary for that particular day.
Is there something else you’d like your students to know?
Be Yoga Japan is a place where everyone is welcome. Even total beginners are welcome.
See the Original Interview
(In Japanese, no subtitles.)