Ana Forrest & Jose Calarco - Forrest Yoga
Ana Forrest has been changing people’s lives for nearly 40 years. An internationally recognized pioneer in yoga and emotional healing, Ana created Forrest Yoga while working through her own healing from her life’s trauma and experience. With thousands of licensed practitioners around the world, Forrest Yoga is renowned as an intensely physical, internally focused practice that emphasizes how to carry a transformative experience off the mat and into daily life.
By teaching asana, breath and an awareness of the movement of energy through the body, Ana teaches yoga from an intuitive and highly developed understanding of the human body and psyche. With her meticulous guidance, Ana’s students cultivate an acute awareness of their own practice and life process, resulting in an exhilarating journey into self-discovery, cleansing and healing. For Ana, this is her intent. “In teaching Forrest Yoga, I am doing my part to mend the hoop of the people - to inspire people to clear through the stuff that hardens them and sickens their bodies so they can walk freely and lightly in a healing way, in a Beauty Way.”
Ana took her first yoga class at age 14 on a dare and became a certified instructor at age 18. Her extensive study and clinical application of healing modalities, including homeopathic and naturopathic remedies, anatomy, reflexology, pressure point therapy, craniosacral therapies, Shiatsu, chiropractic, polarity and hands on healing, always informs her work. In her life-long pursuit of becoming a better teacher and healer, Ana has undertaken intimate studies in Sweat Lodge, Pipe Ceremony, Vision Quest and Sundance with various Native American and African healers.
Ana is an ordained practitioner of Native American Medicine, a Reiki Master, a Certified Regression Therapist, and a graduate of Anthony Robbins Master University. She is a Faculty Member at The University of Bridgeport College of Chiropractic and sits on the Boards of F.A.R.E. Play (Foundation for Athletic Research and Education) and Earth & Sky Circle (organization for Native American Ceremony). She is the recipient of a Los Angeles Mayoral Commendation recognizing her outstanding teaching and healing work in the community, the first time a major U.S. city bestowed such an honor on a yogi or yogini. Ana is a regular contributor to Yoga Journal and a consultant to the USAF 48th Fighter Wing (RAF Lakenheath, UK), Exalted Warrior Foundation (Tampa, FL) and hiwecanhelp.org (Newcastle, UK).
Ana has generated extensive worldwide media coverage. She continues to teach throughout the year around the world. Her book, Fierce Medicine: Breakthrough Practices to Heal the Body and Ignite the Spirit, (HarperOne) was released May 2011.
Ana co-teaches and creates all of her workshops and events with her partner, Medicine Man Jose Calarco.
Jose Calarco has had a long and wide-ranging association in the arts in Australia and around the World for the last twenty five years, in this time he has covered almost the entire spectrum of experience, from producer and administrator of large-scale events, to innovative artistic direction in the fields of dance, film, theatre, yoga and music. Jose’s strong management credentials have seen Descendance Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Dance Theatre grow into one of Australia’s leading international Cultural Exports. José’s ability to multi-task in marketing, box office, administration, sales, computers, performing musician, recording, writing and artistic direction was the foundation on which Descendance was built; the success of the company came with minimal financial Government support. Descendance has now realized its dreams and potential performing at the World’s premier festivals and events. Jose’s was at the forefront of the world music and dance evolution in the eighties and nineties in Australia as a producer, promoter and performer.
Most recently Jose has been the Ceremonial Leader for Forrest Yoga events lead by the Creatrix of Forrest Yoga, Ana T. Forrest. He creates and teaches ceremonies, tells creation stories from the traditions of the First Peoples of Australia and other shamanic ethnicities and weaves these into setting the intent for the yoga practice. Jose brings his passion, playfulness and heartfelt respect for the ceremonial traditions of the First Peoples to every workshop.
“I developed Forrest Yoga as I was working through my own healing. I took poses and modified or created new ones to address today’s lifestyle physical ailments. For example, the ailments that our bodies are manifesting due to our lifestyle – lower and upper back pain, neck and shoulder issues, carpal tunnel syndrome, intestinal disorders.”
“We also crave and need challenge, adventure and a daily diet of delight. In my own healing quest, I recognized my loss of Spirit. Something I now see in others – this modern day sense of bereft Spirit. Through Forrest Yoga you get your physical health and strength and also a place in which to welcome your Spirit back home. And by this I do not mean a spiritual practice but rather being your authentic self.”
Forrest Yoga does not require strength or flexibility; it only requires a willingness to learn how to feel authentically and respond honestly. The practice is founded on four pillars -- Breath, Strength, Integrity and Spirit.
Forrest Yoga teaches you how to breathe deeply, connect in feeling with your body, use the power of breath to bring aliveness into every cell of your body and ignite your passion for living.
Forrest Yoga teaches you to connect to your core, to be strong and centered. The intense pose sequences are designed to help you develop the skills to awaken each of your senses. The long holds help you progress in the poses and go deeper. Aided by the use of heat, your body is freed from toxins; the deep breathing oxygenates and rejuvenates every cell in your body.
Forrest Yoga teaches you to become proficient at safely tailoring each pose to work best for you, particularly with physical and emotional injuries. By learning to work honestly at your edges, you develop effective tools to deal with fear and struggle. This makes it possible for integrity, self-awareness and playful curiosity to become part of your daily life.
Forrest Yoga's intent is to create a sense of freedom, a connection to your Spirit and the courage to walk as your Spirit dictates.