Sami Mälkiä - Personal Biography
Sami Mälkiä took his first Ashtanga yoga workshop at the Astanga Yoga School in Helsinki in 1999 after leading an active life which included martial arts, boxing, tai chi, gentle hatha yoga, Tibetan yoga, as well as running and swimming. After this first challenging and hilariously sweaty Ashtanga class, Sami was convinced he had found the practice for which he was longing. The vinyasa system was so natural and invigorating that he felt a couple of inches taller and a couple of grams happier. Sami felt fortunate to begin his regular practice within the dedicated Ashtanga community with Juha Javanainen and Petri Räisänen under the guidance of Lino Miele as a visiting teacher. Even more fortunate for Sami were Lino's regular workshops and retreats in Finland and India where Sami was able to practice for 6-8 weeks every year. One thing led to another, and soon, Sami quit his job in advertising when the Astanga Yoga School in Helsinki asked him to join as an assisting teacher in 2001. Guruji's visit earlier that year in Helsinki had given him inspiration to follow his heart on the yoga path. Sami is grateful for having been able to deepen his practice with Guruji in Helsinki and Mysore and also for the opportunity to assist at Lino's retreats in India.
Sami has also taught in Paris (2006) and Chicago (2008) as a Mysore-style teacher. He feels privileged to have amazing experiences as both student and teacher in the strong Ashtanga community. The lineage in Helsinki and Lino's sincere and playful encouragement has deepened his understanding of a dedicated, patient and joyful everyday practice. Through this process, Sami has discovered that it's all about being aware of one's breath and being able to feel gratitude in the present moment.
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