- Denver, Colorado
"I, Danny Poole, am 64 years young," I was given the name "Yoga Danny," by the football players at the University of Colorado during my 4 years as their yoga instructor. I grew up in Jackson, Michigan and attended Grand Valley State University. I went to GVSU on their first basketball scholarship in 1967 and was hired after graduation to be the Assistant coach in charge of recruiting high school basketball players in the Michigan area. Later to be named to the GVSU Hall of Fame in basketball. My college rebounding records are still standing. It was at GVSU, (www.gvsu.ed) that I discovered Hatha Yoga and I have been practicing as a student and teacher for the past 40 years.
The blue skies and mountains of Colorado attracted me to take the first head coaching job for women's basketball at Aspen High School in the 1975-76 season. We won the conference championship and it was the first time in 44 years that a team from Aspen was in a State tournament. We finished fourth in the State tournament that year. Even back then, I incorporated yoga in our basketball practice throughout the season to enhance concentration.
While in Aspen, I was cast to play a part in a Pepsi commercial which aired during the 1976 Winter Olympic. This role lead me to New York, where yoga played an important role in my life as I pursued more modeling gigs. Landing a gig with Schick Razor Blade took me to Australia, where I fell in love with the people, countryside and their sports. I was practicing yoga all the way, sharing with my new Aussie athletes-friends. Eventually, I grew homesick for soul food and started a soul food restaurant named Hog Heaven in Sydney to satisfy that need. That venture grew into another restaurant in Denver and which brought me back to the States. Here I remain.
After a career in the food business, I pursued teaching yoga to professional athletes and scored a media pass to write about sports for the Denver Weekly News.
I credit Shannon Sharpe and Bill Romanowski for practicing yoga with me while in Denver and making it easy for other Broncos players to accept yoga as a viable way to enhance athletic performance. I have taught hatha yoga in a variety of mainstream settings such as corporate stress management, mental health, health care, health clubs, senior care, team sports and privately one-on-one. I have taught numerous athletes and private clients over the pass 16 years, ranging in age from 8 to 80+ years young. My professional sports client resume is experienced. I have successfully stretched members of the NFL, 1996 Colorado Men's Open Golf Tournament, Colorado Crush, Broncos team yoga instructor 2008, Nuggets, Rockies, WNBA, EAS, the University of Colorado Athletic Department and Lakewood Country Club. A few of the professionals athletes I have trained include: Brandon Marshall, Tyler Polumbus, John Elway, Terrell Davis, Barry Bonds, Eric Young Jr, and Sr., Brian Griese, Willie Roaf, Rod Smith, Carmelo Anthony, Shannon Sharpe, Jeremy Bloom, Bertrand Berry, Lional Dalton, Ben Hamilton, Tyler Brayton, Grant Irons, Marcus Harris. When the San Francisco Giants play in Denver, Barry Bonds practice yoga with me and called the experience "the bomb." I love living in the Mile High City.