The Yogi Next to You


The Yogi Next to You - Evelyn TroesterWhat’s your yoga story? How did you find Mala?

“It’s so YOU! You will love it.”, said my friend Mary right before schlepping me to my first Yoga class on the Upper West Side exactly three years ago. About an hour later, I was mortified being the only one who couldn’t stand on one leg without losing my balance. Oh, and then stretching the elevated leg up to the right and looking to the left?! Yeah… right. That was never gonna happen!

I did like the cozy atmosphere, though, the inspirational talk at the beginning of class, the unexpectedly large amount of sweating, the massage before savasana and of course: the singing (what were the words again?). My body felt amazing, I was walking and standing differently, and everyone seemed suddenly so much nicer.

I found Mala in my neighborhood back in Brooklyn and started going once or twice per week.

I not only received a deeper understanding and appreciation of my body, but also a huge boost to my anatomical vocabulary (Hello deltoid!).

Lindsay’s Thursday morning class became one of my staples due to her consistent way of incorporating meditation and pranayama into a challenging asana sequence. I upgraded my class card to 20, went to dharma talks and meditation workshops, and Yoga started to be more than just poses: I learned to use my breath to heat my body and center my mind, I marveled at the wisdom teachings and contemplated its rich philosophy, I observed great parallels between “on the mat” and “off the mat” , and applied my new realizations consciously (and often unconsciously) to my profession as a singer, teacher and choral conductor. The change in how I approached my world was apparent and fascinated me.

In June 2012, I became a certified Yoga Teacher and have now opened my own little studio, where I teach YoVoice: a combination of Yoga and Voice lessons. (

What pose do you want to do all day? What pose could you never do again?

I love arm balances (good for my ego ;)), hip openers, twists, Warrior 2, but I am not crazy about Hanumanasana, Parsvottanasana, or Sarvangasana. Still to this day, tree pose is my nemesis. I chuckle about it, because compared to other crazy poses, it should be easy. But it is not easy for me. I still fear to not being able to balance it and to embarrass myself as a “certified Yoga Teacher”…ha!

What are your biggest yoga obstacles?

It’s all about letting go of control, which has been one of the biggest lessons for me this year. Tree pose has become my teacher! It taught me that letting myself fall out of the pose without judging is a much bigger accomplishment than nailing it.

What was the last Dharma talk that resonated with you?

“Soften to what is.”

Where is your favorite place to get coffee, or a drink, post-yoga?

After class I either grab coffee at Cafe Pedlar or go for a delicious breakfast at Ted & Honey’s.

If you could practice yoga anywhere in the world, where would it be?

In business meetings. In arguments. Waiting for the subway.

How has practicing shifted other aspects of your life?

To be honest, it has shifted everything. Now yoga has to be in my day in some form. By that I mean not just asanas, but the practice of transforming my inner reaction to what arises. It’s about not letting the day run by, but being in it – consciously aware of myself and others.

Hey, I guess Mary was right from the start and I’m so very grateful that she took me that day to yoga.

We’re thrilled to bring you the stories of Mala yogis in their own words.  Maybe you know them, maybe you’ve never seen them before, maybe they look familiar, maybe you once knew their name, but forgot.  Whatever the case may be, here is the chance to learn a little more about the person practicing on the mat next to you.  Click here to read about other yogis.


About The Mala Yoga Blog

We are a Brooklyn-based studio that focuses on alignment, balance and community. Have a read, try one of our Practice Podcasts, or come in and say "hi" in person!
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One Response to The Yogi Next to You

  1. Irka Schmuck says:

    Hi Evi, great to read your yoga story… and the one to meditation and transformation – i always knew that you must be very “spiritual” as such a gifted and he artful singer and teacher… do you remember my Feng Shui “career”? I’am a spiritual teacher now and give meditation classes and transformational talks, rituals, workshops… to live your inner self and beauty in your life.
    Would love to hear more from you and your life… Love and big hug, Irka (Alex Sopran von ChorNetto :-))

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