Dianna Kinaschuk

I hail from Dearborn, Michigan the hometown of the world  renown Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village. 

Who or what inspired you to be a yoga instructor:
My inspiration was  the imitable Gina Bedrosian a founding member of YAGD, my mentor and  sponsor. It was Gina who lit the fire and passion for yoga within me.  Despite the fact that she was afflicted with Parkinson’s disease, Gina  rarely missed teaching her classes. Her contributions to the yoga world  were many and varied. In addition to her many general classes she  conducted classes exclusively for Parkinson’s, authored a book Yoga Today,  created a video Get Up & Go, and hosted a cable television series to name a  few. To this vibrant woman who left behind her legacy I remain ever  grateful. 

Describe your yoga style:
In my almost 40 years of practice it’s been  Hatha yoga pure and simple. 

What’s your favorite yaga pose:
Suryanamaskar has always been a staple  in my practice. I added versatility to the pose including side bends, twists,  and balances. 

What brings you to the mat:
Pure instincts call me to the mat. I have a  yoga mat in practically every room in my home. One of which was personally  autographed by actor Shirley MacLaine, a dedicated yogi in her own rite. 

Do you work for a yoga studio or have a private practice?
I have  taught beginning and continuing yoga classes for Dearborn Adult Education  for over four decades. I’ve also enjoyed conducting workshops for many  diverse groups including corporations, professional models, high school  football teams and Brownie troops to name a few, each one a joy. For the past three years I’ve been conducting yoga classes outdoors, a glorious  celebration of yoga and nature. 

Discuss how being a member of YAGD has helped you in your yoga  career:
I am fortunate to be a long time member of YAGD with its many  talents. It served as a doorway to other health related modalities such as  Reiki, Felden krais, acupuncture, massage, and ethnic dance. At one of our  yoga retreats I conducted a belly dancing class and even the male yogis  joined in. Such fun! 

Do you have a favorite yoga story from your teaching experience:
I had a heartwarming experience. I was surprised to find one of my former  fourth grade students of bygone years now as an adult enrolled in my  beginning yoga class. You might say he was “Twice Taught!” 

Is there anything else you would like to add?
I am exceedingly proud  of two life long friends of whom I sponsored to YAGD and held long time  positions. Audrey Pleasant served as librarian purchasing yoga and yoga  related books, and reporting reviews at our monthly meetings. And, Sir  Vincent Spadacini serving effectively as merchandise chairperson  responsible for purchasing, storage, and selling yoga related paraphernalia  at our events. Thank you both for your long time contributions to YAGD. 

A Highlight:
I achieved a lifetime goal in 1999, spending a summer  workshop under the tutelage of Ramanand Patel and George Purvis at the  highly acclaimed Feathered Pipe Ranch in the majestic mountains of  Montana, also the birthplace of the Yoga Journal. 

Final Thought:
I thank God for the ancient system of Yoga and the Yoga  Association of Greater Detroit one of the oldest associations in the United  States.