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Good-bye Five Minute Yoga, Hello Spinefulness

Photos of Eve Johnson showing the results of two years of Spinefulness, including a much straighter upper back.
The results of two years of taking Balance/Spinefulness classes: a more relaxed body, and a much straighter upper back.

I set off for Palo Alto, in March 2016, to take a weekend course in something called Balance. On that first trip, I stayed at the Hotel California, which might or might not have been an omen. What’s certain is that I checked into a new way of being in my body, and I have no intention of ever checking out. 

In two days, I learned that the alignment I had been studying and teaching for 29 years in yoga was demonstrably not helping me. And the new alignment, in those moments when I could achieve it, felt relaxed and strong at the same time. The two big differences: I let my pelvis roll forward, and I stopped lifting my chest.

Like Saul on the road to Damascus, I returned home a changed person. (You can read the whole story of my conversion, plus get some sense of the work, in this post that I wrote for the Yoga for Healthy Aging blog.)

A yoga practice book I had started writing sat on the shelf. I still taught yoga, but with as much of the new alignment as I could translate into the poses. I began teaching classes in what’s now called Spinefulness. And I dived into learning more, which so far has meant another four trips to Palo Alto to certify as a Spinefulness teacher, and two more to study with visiting French teachers.

I also went to Paris twice in 2018, where Noelle Perez, the woman who had the original insight for this work, was still teaching, at 93. And I just came home from a week-long seminar it Italy with Noelle’s most senior student, Georgia LeConte.

The full shift took time, but in February 2019, I taught my first Spineful Yoga class, and for the first time in 12 years did not renew my Iyengar teaching certification.

Now when I write, it’s about Spinefulness and Spineful yoga. This link will take you to my new blog, at spinefulness.ca. In the next two weeks, I’m going decommission the Five-Minute Yoga blog, and begin to send Spinefulness related blog posts to this mailing list.

If you’re interested and want to keep in touch, you have nothing more to do.

If you’d like to clean out your inbox, and you don’t think you’ll miss me, then thank you for having subscribed, and Godspeed. Hit the unsubscribe button, and let’s part friends.  

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • L.A. September 27, 2019, 11:39 pm

    Thank you, and please, do come to Ottawa to share your wisdom soon :)

    • Eve September 30, 2019, 12:34 pm

      Hi L.A.,
      I’d love to come to Ottawa to teach – either Spinefulness or Spineful Yoga. All I need is for someone in Ottawa to organize the workshop.
      If you’re at all interested, let me know.

  • Connie Manno September 26, 2019, 7:02 pm

    Dear Eve,
    I was so glad to see your emails again, and I’m looking forward to receiving your Spinefulness posts. Perfect timing!


    • Eve September 30, 2019, 12:35 pm

      Hey Connie,
      Whenever I see “perfect timing,” I start to worry that you’ve just developed a back problem. I do hope that’s not so. Thanks for your support. Much appreciated.

  • J. Rendek September 14, 2019, 11:35 pm

    Perfect timing – just like when we met at Yoga on 7th. Looking forward to learning more.

    • Eve September 16, 2019, 11:14 am

      Great to hear from you! It’s always a good time for Spinefulness.
      Glad to know our timing is perfect again.

  • Gail Pickens-Barger September 14, 2019, 10:42 am

    Ditto on keeping the blog! One can have more than one! Thanks!

    • Eve September 16, 2019, 11:12 am

      Hey Gail,
      Quite a few people have asked about keeping it, so I’ve reconsidered. I’ll keep the Five-Minute Yoga website up, and just make sure there are plenty of opportunities for people to find me in my new location. Thanks for helping me make that decision.

  • Jane September 14, 2019, 6:32 am

    I too have missed your blogs and look forward to what more we will learn.
    Cheers for the adventure and learning.
    Best wishes,

    • Eve September 16, 2019, 11:11 am

      Thank you letting me know that you missed the blog posts – and for the vote of support. It means a lot.

  • claire malone September 14, 2019, 5:41 am

    Welcome back, Eve. Looking forward to your new blog.

    • Eve September 16, 2019, 11:10 am

      Nice to see your name pop up, and thanks for your support.

  • Doris Ecker September 13, 2019, 11:23 pm

    Hi Eve,

    delighted to hear you will be blogging about spinefulness! I loved reading your 5-minute yoga blog , but am also very happy to know that checking into a new adventure has lead you down this path. Very much looking forward to reading more from you, and to come to one of your classes when I am in town.

    • Eve September 16, 2019, 11:10 am

      Doris, great to hear from you. I’m gathering that France is working out just fine. Will have to hook you up with one of the French teachers. I know someone who’s an hour outside of Lyon, if that’s possible.
      I’ll look forward to seeing you in class one of these days.

  • Ulana September 13, 2019, 4:17 pm

    Can you reconsider decommissioning the blog? It has a lot of gems in it.

    • Eve September 13, 2019, 5:03 pm

      Hey Ulana,
      Sure, I can give that some thought. Thanks for making the suggestion.

  • Vicki Robichaud September 13, 2019, 3:59 pm

    I look forward to your expertise.

  • Vicki Robichaud September 13, 2019, 3:58 pm

    Hi from OTTAWA. Looking forward to it.

    • Eve September 13, 2019, 5:05 pm

      Hey Vicki,
      Thanks for that.
      Eventually I’d love to be coming to Ottawa to teach a weekend Spinefulness foundations course. In person and hands on is definitely the best. In the meantime, I’ll do my best to share what I know.

  • Trish September 13, 2019, 3:43 pm

    Delighted for your stepping into spinefulness. I want to learn as much as can about it. I will be looking for more information as it becomes available.
    Gratitud and Namaste,

    • Eve September 13, 2019, 5:08 pm

      Thanks for your support. My mission is to create a worldwide following for Spinefulness, so I’ll be doing as much as I can to keep you informed. Best, Eve

  • Diane Marie Huska September 13, 2019, 2:12 pm

    Hello my dear. I was so sure your absence from my inbox was totally my fault. Welcome back. Yes, yes, I am all in. Thank you for writing and congrats on this new venture!

    • Eve September 13, 2019, 5:10 pm

      Oh, Diane, that’s hilarious. I too know the feeling of being responsible for someone else not turning up. Thank you so much for your enthusiasm and generosity. And welcome aboard.

  • Barbara Doran September 13, 2019, 1:40 pm

    So very very happy to see you in my inbox. I have back issues now so look forward to your new journey and the of course through you my new journey.

    Best, Barbara

    • Eve September 13, 2019, 5:16 pm

      Barbara, how lovely to see your name again. I’m sorry to learn that you have back issues. I’m so glad you’re coming along in this new direction.

  • Karen Ferguson September 13, 2019, 1:35 pm

    Yipee!! Looking forward to it, Eve. I’ve learned a lot from your blogging over the years. Can’t wait to see more….

    • Eve September 13, 2019, 1:39 pm

      Hey Karen, Good to hear from you and thanks for the endorsement! Hope to see you in class soon.