Never in a million years did Erin ever expect that walking into her first yoga class well over a decade ago would lead her on the most rewarding and exciting journey of her life. It is pretty inexplicable how she managed (after over 20 years of little to no fitness and a very poor diet) to get herself to walk into her first day of class and then go back again. And again.
Erin's initial motivation in pursuing yoga was to attempt to make a change in her physical body as well as repair her confidence after many years of teasing, bullying, and loss of self esteem from classmates throughout her academic career. The side effects seemed to be unshakable and they began to hold her back as an adult, which was particularly frustrating as a television and film actor. She knew she had to make a change. It was this passion to find a strong, flexible, versatile physical form which led her to finding her very best friends, a strong supportive yoga community, and herself. Erin started seeing results immediately, and so did her mother, Jeri. Inspired by her daughter's commitment, Jeri embraced yoga with open arms, and began her own yoga journey to repair her body of any pain and become the best she can be. The Fogel girls are heartfelt believers that yoga can cure anything: body, soul, and mind.
After years of thought and preparation, House of Jai finally broke ground, and Erin could not contain her creativity! Her heart raced with exciting, innovative concepts to really set House of Jai apart from any other yoga studio in the world. Her talent for creative visions and love of fashion made her the perfect choice to direct all things marketing and offer HoJai members the sleekest yoga apparel available with Jai's retail boutique. Additionally, Erin is the creator and designer of the Jai Custom Karma Shop, available on this website!
Erin received her 200 hour Vinyasa Teaching Certification under the tutelage of her Jai partner, Meg Carlough, as well as her Teen Teaching Certification from Karma Kids with Erin Wilson and Shari Vilchez- Blatt. With her lighthearted comedy and energetic sequencing, Erin found this lent itself to connecting with not only adults, but also teenagers. With her ability to both relate to and amuse the youth, it was unmistakable that she was making positive differences as they matured. It felt as though she was mending the injured teenager that had been living inside of her all along. Erin is proud to teach House of Jai's Teen Program as well as teach Happy Hour Conditioning for the yogi who loves to be both entertained and challenged with exercises that strengthen perfect alignment in order to both heal the body, and get an amazing cardio exercise.
Erin continues to pursue television and film, and can be seen in some of your favorite programs and movies. She is the founder of Feeling Jai Productions and the Head of Development and Distribution for Golden Ceiba Productions.
My husband Glen and I moved to NYC in 2001 after raising our children to be near our family's Real Estate Management Company.
About 5 years ago I started having a lot of physical issues which began to affect my quality of life. Severe lower back pain kept me at the Chiropractor several times a week. My daughter Erin gave me the gift of a private yoga session in my apartment promising that it would help. After that first session I realized how badly I needed to continue practicing. Within 3 months I felt significantly better and within a year I was a new person. Not only did I improve my flexibility and balance, I also finally learned to relax.
After meeting and getting to know Meg, Erin and I would frequently talk about opening a yoga studio with her. When the perfect space became available I called a meeting and House of Jai Yoga was born. This has been a labor of love and a collaboration of individual skills. It is the realization of our dream of creating a truly fabulous space where everyone, no matter what age or level of practice can enjoy the benefits of yoga.
It was a near fatal accident in 2000 that brought Meg to practice. The casual recommendation of a friend to try Yoga as a way of working through her emotional and physical injuries turned out to be a life-changing one. While the asanas (postures/poses) helped her rebuild physical strength, it was the beauty of Yoga's self-exploration that helped her mind and heart heal, simultaneously teaching her to celebrate her capabilities and accept her limitations. Having experienced the profound changes it can offer, Meg felt compelled to deepen her studies of Yoga and share them through teaching.
Meg's lifelong love of music and singing drew her to Kirtan (call and response mantra), which she studied and refined under the guidance of such great teachers as Jai Uttal. The mantras she chants to her students as they awake from savanasa are offered in gratitude for these teachers, as well as for her students and colleagues who inspire her every day.
Meg teaches various types of Yoga, which all serve to help her approach the world more mindfully. The joy and freedom she feels when teaching children reminds her how simple practice and life can be, and that many complications are a choice. The shared stillness of her gentle and restorative classes remind her that Yoga is a process of involution, understanding, and intention. In her vinyasa classes she tries to challenge and observe the body while still offering an opportunity to investigate the more subtle layers beneath the surface.
If her journey has taught her anything, it's that obstacles are both placed and removed from our paths to help guide us toward places we never could have anticipated. The House of Jai is just such a place. To Meg, it is the true meaning of the word Yoga: union. The joining together of lifetimes of learning and an amazing group of people she is proud to call her chosen family.' A union into which she is extremely grateful for the opportunity to welcome you.