Be Yoga Japan Instructor, Chiharu Ueyama

Chiharu Ueyama interview photo

Translation: Taylor Cazella

Chiharu Ueyama

  • Yoga Alliance Registered Yoga Teacher
  • Certified ISHTA Yoga Instructor (E-RYT500)
  • Stott Pilates Certified Instructor
  • Instructor Training Course Senior Teacher

In 1985, Chiharu got her start in the world of fitness as an aerobics instructor. While working as an instructor at a sports club in 1992, she broadened her knowledge of fitness by extensively studying a wide range of techniques and approaches. She is well versed in areas such as aerobic exercise, resistance training, water aerobics, stretching, yoga, reflexology, and PNF stretching. Using her knowledge and experience, she has worked in Tokyo, Osaka, and Nagoya as a chief training instructor, and as part of a program development and planning group creating new exercise programs and training instructors. In 2002, she began working independently in Tokyo.

Chiharu says,
“While studying about the structure of the human body, working, and teaching, I realized I wanted to continue teaching and to continue expanding my knowledge. That desire is realized in yoga and pilates. Currently I teach private yoga and pilates lessons, yoga group lessons, and conduct yoga instructor training. Yoga’s biggest appeal for me is the breath control and meditation techniques. What I particularly like about ISHTA Yoga is the way it combines your physical body, breathing techniques, and meditation to allow you to experience your body, mind and spirituality in different ways. I think it is important to conduct classes using simple, easy-to-understand language. I am looking forward to meeting you!”

Hello, my name is Chiharu Ueyama. I am an instructor of Yoga. I am in charge of regular classes, meditation classes and restorative classes.

To start, can you tell us a bit about your upbringing?

I was raised in Kagoshima, on the far southwest side of Kyushu. I grew up near the ocean.

How many years have you been teaching yoga?

I’ve been teaching yoga since 1995, so that would make it 18 years.

Could you tell us about Be Yoga, and what your role is there?

I’m responsible restorative classes, meditation classes and regular classes at Be Yoga. I’m also involved with the training courses.

Can you tell us about Be Yoga’s Teacher Training Course?

In ISHTA Yoga there are 200-hour basic courses, but additionally, as for ATTs, there’s Philosophy, Ayurveda, Anatomy and all sorts of specialty courses, so I think the order of the courses is easy to figure out. By ATT, I mean Advanced Teacher Training courses. The basic course will allow an individual to become a yoga instructor for the first time, and for individuals who already are instructors, it is a chance to deepen their skills.

What does the act of teaching mean for you?

By teaching so many different people, I learn so much. I strive to learn.

Please tell us about the style of yoga you teach.

We teach ISHTA Yoga. Ideas from Tantra are used in ISHTA Yoga, so we’re able to chose from various forms of meditation and such. And since it uses an Indian life science called Ayurveda, much like with divination, we’re able to tell whether one has the quality of fire, or water, or earth, and so we are able to try and choose forms that match these various individuals, and we’re also able to account for what season it is.

What is your greatest pleasure in being a yoga instructor?

I really like methods of meditation. Life is like a snowball smushed. Meditation allows the snowball to fall away into small pieces and dissolve eventually. My daily life is usually chaotic and feels like a “smushed” snowball. Therefore, I like to meditate and site quietly. It truly is a wonderful feeling.

See the Original Interview

(In Japanese, no subtitles.)

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