Teacher Profile: Danny Dworkis


We wanted to get to know more about Danny Dworkis who is the co-owner of Bikram Yoga Vancouver! Actor/musician by day and yoga teacher/studio owner by night! Interested? Read what we asked him here:

Danny, we are trying to help our readers get back into their regular routines after summer holidays! What’s your best excuse to not turn up to class? How do you overcome it?

I find we forget how important the connection is to slow down, focus on the self, and concentrate on the breath. We get farther and farther away from that connection. We forget how awesome it is to physically connect with our bodies. For me, I know every time I do a class my body feels so good. Bikram Yoga really brings you back into your body. A big reason why people feel so crappy is because they don’t remember what that is like. They are always in their heads! We don’t know why we feel so messed up mentally but when we take care of our body our mental state naturally improves.

So I guess the excuse becomes: who needs to be connected? We are so used to being disconnected. Once you stop for a couple months you forget how good it feels to do Bikram Yoga. That feeling of your body being cleaner (or detoxified), leaner, and open. To remember that feeling is really important, just focus on that. You just have to get your butt back in there and it’s easier if you can remember why…

Do you prefer to take morning or evening classes? Why?

I prefer evenings because I like to sleep in until twelve. Although, it’s more honest to do it in the morning because that’s when you’re the stiffest. In the evening you are more flexible but its a little bit harder because you don’t have the strength like you do in the morning. I like both, really, but I end up doing evening classes because that’s when I’m up. My morning starts at 2pm.

You have been teaching Bikram Yoga for over 10 years! Can you believe it? What is your favourite part about teaching?

My favourite part is that it is inspiring to see people come alive and to see people get rid of their chronic pain–it can happen in weeks. It’s inspiring when people come up to me, weekly, saying, “I can’t believe my back pain is gone.” “I can’t believe I lost 25 pounds in two months.” Teaching is a really important part of my lifestyle that I cherish. It keeps me honest.

Everyone is curious, where is your favourite place in Vancouver to grab a healthy snack?

Tojo’s or Organic lives or Sejuiced.

We have heard your music and we think it’s funky and fantastic! We’ve also seen you acting in films and on TV shows! How does yoga enhance your creativity? Where do you go for inspiration?

I’m inspired by everything, all the time, but yoga keeps the energy high and positive but also keeps me grounded. Yoga, I mean, is really connected to my creativity. I’d do a class in LA with Bikram and go right to the recording studio. I do a class here and go right to the recording studio. I connected with Ziggy [a fellow band mate] through Bikram. Yoga has really really helped me learn how to stay grounded (which is really important for a creative type) and it has also taught me how to take off—it gives me that blast, it gives me that energy. It really helps me deal with the stress of working in the studio and working with other musicians.

It’s been a key factor for my ability to be consistently creative and it also helps me act. I was just on set today doing a small role on a show called Psych–it really helps me stay calm when there are 50 lights in my face and the pressure is on to hit my marks on the first take. I love to bring people from the film industry (actors/directors/crew) to come and try the yoga. It’s really important for me. If I wasn’t doing yoga, I probably wouldn’t be able to last. I’d burn out, or spin out… it’s really key. I notice that a lot of creative people like Bikram Yoga—mostly because it teaches you how to land and it also teaches you how to take off.

Seen any great movies this summer?

Ummm… I haven’t seen that many movies but I liked Avatar!

Danny has acted in many TV shows and films but stopped for the last 5 years to focus on music! Danny’s band, Godfathers of Love, has a video premiering tonight (Thursday, Sept 30th) on MuchMusic’s The Wedge at midnight. Watch (and vote!) for it here.

Been to one of Danny’s classes before – read a couple of the distinctive “Danny-isms” that make his classes so much fun!

Also, Danny just started acting again booking film and TV shows! Watch for Danny in the film The Odds and on the TV show Psych on the episode called “In plain fright” airing soon! 

To hear the rest of the album from Godfathers of Love, click here.

To purchase on iTunes, click here!

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