This week, Laura and Sara are joined by Cat Levine, owner of Be Yoga Andersonville. Be Yoga is a family-owned yoga school in the Andersonville neighborhood that offers Bikram yoga classes to students at all skill levels. If you want to improve your muscle strength, flexibility, and circulation, visit Be Yoga at 5715 N. Clark.
“I’m genuinely thrilled and so happy for every single person that walks through my doors.”
– Cat Levine
Listen to Episode 35 with Cat Levine!
Here are some references from Episode 35 you may want to check out:
- Be Yoga Celebrated 10 years in Andersonville this past October. Check out their website for the upcoming class schedule and to learn more about the instructors.
- Cat grew up in Hong Kong and started practicing yoga when she moved to Canada at the age of 17. She became interested in yoga after passing by a hot yoga classroom in the dead of winter, noticing that all of the people were sweating heavily in the middle of freezing weather.
“I was very cold, and I wanted to be warm.”
– Cat Levine
- Cat practiced yoga for seven years before becoming a teacher, but she knew within the first month of her own personal practice that teaching is something she wanted to work toward because of the positive effects it had on her life. Prior to coming to Chicago, Cat taught in London and internationally. Although there are no differences in the teaching methods, Cat mentions the cultural differences from city to city really got her attention.
- Be Yoga opened in 2008 under former owner Jessica Rask. She hired Cat as a teacher first, and later promoted her as a manager. Cat took over the business as owner in 2013.
- Cat thinks that the most common misconception about yoga is what a person who does yoga looks like: young, flexible, fit and beautiful, which is not true. Yoga is for everyone, and everyone can find benefit in the practice.
- Cat placed first in the women’s 2017 Midwest Super Regional Yoga Asana Championships and also represented our region at the 2017 National Championships. Check out USA Yoga’s website for more information about yoga competitions. Cat’s personal experiences in competition have been beautiful; not only is it the gathering of the yoga community, but the environment is far more supportive than competitive.
- Cat says that Be Yoga mainly teaches Bikram Yoga because she finds it to be therapeutic and accessible for all bodies. Cat has taught people in wheelchairs and people who do not have full motion of the spine. There are 26 positions employed in Bikram Yoga, and the room is kept at 105 degrees!
- Cat has had students with injuries of all kinds that make incredible recoveries through the practice of yoga, including herself after recovering from a bad car accident. She’s also seen improvements in some students with bone density over time.
- Be Yoga also teaches the practice of Yoga Nidra, or sleeping yoga, in which one lies on their back and follows a list of verbal instructions in order to relax. If done properly, the body relaxes to the point of a “floating sensation,” according to Cat. Learn about the 5 Benefits of Yoga Nidra here.
- Be Yoga does not do hands-on adjustments with any of their instructors during class. No one can truly understand what another person if feeling in their body.
- Cat says that she is happy with how popular yoga is in this country; she even has a friend that teaches goat yoga on the east coast! What is goat yoga? Check out this article from CNN.
- In the future, Cat would love to offer more varieties of yoga at the studio and to continue to improve the vibrancy of the community. She may even open a second studio one day.
- If Cat could switch places with another Andersonville business for a day, she would pick First Slice Pie Cafe (5357 N. Ashland) so that she could sit around all day and eat pie. Cat really likes their Polka Dot pie.