Get to know Eryn Blair—IU graduate, dancer, and real estate enthusiast! Eryn’s yoga teacher training began here at Vibe and continued in New York City, where she lived for three years. In her classes, Eryn blends her academic background in Kinesiology with her training in Sky Ting yoga to create sequences that emphasize proper alignment and enhance energy flow. As we focus on the Right to Speak this month, Eryn’s interview highlights the importance of honoring the unique frequencies at which we all vibrate.
What brought you to yoga?
My background as a dancer. I didn’t originally go to yoga for any of the relaxation benefits. I was so Type A with my dance that I thought I needed more stretching, more strength. I was moving for eight hours a day and thinking, “let’s move a little more.”
Yoga totally transformed my dancing because it opened me up in ways that I wasn’t expecting. It didn’t give me more of what I thought that I needed. It opened up pockets of my body physically. I remember a teacher saying that if you’re holding onto your hip flexors, you need to release the things that don’t serve you and find out how much space you can feel. I had this moment of realization. She wasn’t just talking about our hip flexors. She was talking about the things in life that we don’t need. It’s that friend who’s hard on you, or your resentment towards someone. Another teacher said, “the way you do anything is the way you do everything.” That has totally shifted my perspective. When I choose to do a chaturanga even though I’m exhausted and could have dropped into child’s pose, what does that say about the way I do everything else?In those moments, the mind-body connection clicked for me. Yoga then became a lens for me to view my choices outside of my mat.
You’ve returned to Bloomington after a few years in New York. How did your move to the city influence your yoga practice?
I got to take classes with a lot of different teachers and complete a teacher training with a group called SkyTing. It was all based in alignment and what they call sacred geometry. It’s very specific and based on the structure of your bones. I also completed a Core Power training, which reinvigorated my teaching. Before that, I had ventured far out into obscure yoga where I couldn’t find myself anymore, so coming back to a more regimented way to teach set me up with an outline to experiment with. Now the classes I teach feel more like me.
How would you describe your yoga style?
My favorite class to teach is slow flow because I like to explain things. My degree is in Kinesiology, so I really like to teach body mechanics to students. Given that I had that sacred geometry training, I recognize the value of alignment. If your body is in the right place, then your energy channels are more open. For example, I like to hold low lunge so that I have time to explain the alignment and help people feel their energy from head to tail. Rather than breezing through poses, really pausing and holding is my favorite way to teach.
In terms of your move to New York, what’s something you took away from that experience?
It broadened my perspective. My understanding of people is different. In New York, I witnessed the sense of anonymity with the simultaneous feeling that because there are so many other people, you have to differentiate yourself. It’s like you’re nothing and everything all at the same time. That connects to this idea in yoga that as an individual, you have pieces of the entire universe within you. That idea that you are one with everyone else, and you are also distinct from everyone else. You are uniquely different, but you’re also lost in a sea of millions. I reminded myself constantly of the saying, “a child called out when he was born, ‘who am I,’ and the universe responded, ‘we are one.’” That became a theme of my time in New York when I felt lost. It leveled my understanding of other people. I’m no more important than you, but you’re no more important than me.
That’s such a beautiful perspective. How did it feel to return to Bloomington?
I moved to New York because I had a clear reason to be there, so I struggled to leave that behind. There’s a weird idea that if you leave New York, it’s because you failed. First, I had to get over that and realize there was nothing to fail at. I could build a life for myself in Bloomington, and that for me was enough to recognize that I was walking away by choice.
People vibrate at different frequencies. In Bloomington, I can ebb and flow, whereas in New York, I didn’t have options about my frequency. Here, I can be busy one day and slow it down the next. In New York, you’re just buzzing around—you wake up, you get on the subway, you go to work, you get back on the subway, you get back home, and you can barely get to yoga before you’re on the subway again. I just couldn’t think in that environment. It feels good to be back in Bloomington because I feel more myself, but I wouldn’t be who I am now if I hadn’t gone to New York.
How does yoga show up in your everyday life?
I notice that when I practice more, I’m calmer. Some of that is because I vibrate at a high frequency, so I need to get that energy out to slow down. But it’s also about quieting my mind. When I have that time to separate from everything, I enter into conversations differently. For example, if I’m in an argument, I respond less defensively.
Is it a matter of being present and detaching from your initial thoughts?
Yes. It’s a matter of listening to someone else’s feelings rather than immediately jumping to how their words make me feel. I try really hard in my practice to be a spectator to what I’m feeling and to my breath, almost like watching myself. I’m essentially watching my reactions and realizing that if I’m judging myself in the practice, I’m probably judging someone else somewhere else.
It’s interesting to hear you talk about spectatorship because of your dance background. Is there a correlation?
I’ve been a spectator of myself forever because I’ve had to watch myself in a mirror, but it was all judgmental previously. I was never good enough. I never looked as good as other people I saw in the mirror. It took a long time for me to shift to this other mode of watching myself without judgement.
What’s something unexpected that you’ve found in yoga?
My yoga practice changed the way I relate to the rest of the world. It might sound cliché, but it really did. It completely shifted my perspective on other people and how I relate to them. I didn’t expect that. I expected to go stretch and strengthen.
Tell us a fun fact about you.
Everything fascinates me. I actually asked my partner the other day if she was okay with me having seven different jobs between now and the end of our lives. Right now, I’m obsessed with houses. When other people are scrolling through Instagram, I’m scrolling Zillow. I just think houses are really cool, but I also like figuring out what house would be the most efficient for someone. When houses have weird rooms that are unusable, I think, “Absolutely not!” I’m obsessed with efficiency, too. It can make me indecisive. I’ve been known to stand in the cereal aisle for 10 minutes because I’m weighing which one has the longest shelf life and how often I actually eat cereal.