Jo has been blessed to teach yoga, mindfulness, and meditation with practitioners in Arizona, California, Thailand, the UAE, Hawai`i, India, and Dublin since 2007. Her honored teachers include Prahlad (Sivananda), S.N. Goenka, Priscilla Potter, Lisa Schrempp, Shiva Rea, Dharma Mittra, Aadil Palkhivala, Richard Freeman, Pandit Raj Kumar Vajpayee Yogacharya, and Surinder Singh. Jo is certified as a Yogacharya (master) at the 500-hr level by the Yoga Alliance. Sharing somatic, contemplative, and positive approaches to well-being with students looking for a healthful abundant life on their path of Realization is a great source of joy and meaning for Jo. She has found that the ancient wisdom meets us wherever we are, in any given moment, and can benefit practitioners of all backgrounds or body types, physically, psychologically, and beyond.
Current yoga offerings in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia include group and private classes in Hatha, Vinyasa, Elderly, Kids, Chair, Prenatal, Back Care, Healing From Trauma, or a customized class – as well as meditation, mindfulness, and pranayam (breath control) classes.
Hawaiʻi is one of the many places where Jo’s ancestral spirits reside, as well as where she was born as raised; there are many parallels between Aloha, mindfulness, and Yoga. Aloha emphasizes giving without asking in return, akahai (kindness through tenderness), lōkahi (unity through harmony), ʻoluʻolu (agreeableness through pleasantness), haʻahaʻa (humility through modesty), and ahonui (patience through perseverance). These concepts are central to the way Jo lives and the way she offers classes. Coming from a long line of healers, Jo feels a deep responsibility as a medium for these teachings. Her great grandfather was a Chinese medicine doctor in Fukushima, Japan before moving to Hawaiʻi; her father, a therapist and musician, was President of the Theosophical Society in Dublin. Jo draws from both svadhyaya (self-study) and the wisdom of her ancestors, alive and passed, to ensure her students experience the healing, transformative, and expansive potential of each class.
Jo was first drawn to a consistent yoga, meditation, and mindfulness practice when the parallels between studio practice and the art of living became unmistakably clear. Since then, she’s pursued studies in a variety of wisdom traditions and modern psychological approaches: a self-designed post-graduate course in the Psychology of Well-Being involving training in meditation and mindfulness in psychology, the science of spirituality, mind-body medicine, lifestyle science, positive psychology, cultural relevance, and health disparities; Vipassana meditation; mantra; nutrition; the chakra system; Thai massage; and Reiki.
In addition to regular yoga classes and occasional workshops on tour, for her efforts in Karma Yoga, providing free yoga classes to under-served communities and fundraising around global issues, Jo received an award from the Yoga Journal as well as an award and invitation to join the Yoga Service Council. Jo has also been featured on the front page of The Arizona Daily Star, The Gulf News, and in the Hindustan Times, Natural Awakenings, and was recently quoted on the subject of meditation in The New York Times.
Although asana is by no means the most important or defining aspect of a Yoga practice, most students seek an experience primarily focused on physiological means toward Yoga’s many benefits. The album of photos below were taken on Jo’s Around the World in 30 Asanas project, a series documented in The Elephant Journal online.