For Amber East-D’Anna yoga is more than just a form of exercise, it informs a way of life. Now with her new yoga studio East West Yoga opened in Cupertino about two months ago she hopes to teach others the value of yoga and how it can influence other areas of life.
“I’ve been practicing since college, (around) 2001, 2002. Yoga really resonated for me with the physical side of it,” East-D’Anna says.
But it was the entire package of what yoga brings that kept her hooked on yoga and why she’s opened her own studio in Cupertino.
She grew up on the border of Saratoga and Cupertino and attended Cupertino schools before venturing off to college and finishing law school. And perhaps it was in law school and the pressure and stress that came with it that solidified for East-D’Anna what yoga as a practice can bring to the human body—and mind.
“I went to UCLA for musical theater,” she says. And when she was done with college that’s when she entered her "struggling actress" period. Through auditions and such she experienced rejection, and the practice of focusing on breath and movement helped her achieve “calmness, serenity, relaxation.”
“Yoga helped me get through (that time,)” she says.
Putting behind her those stressful times, she moved on.
“My life moved in a different direction. I went to law school a few years later, and got some pretty intense migraines,” she says.
Again she turned to yoga and the migraines disappeared—no drugs, no Western medical intervention, just yoga.
A few years ago she decided to dedicate more time to yoga and became a certified teacher. She’s been teaching dance since she was 16 years old at her mother’s East West Music and Dance on the border of Cupertino in West San Jose. Dance and body movement have always been a part of her life.
As she progressed in her practice of yoga she found a “whole new way for me to move my body,” she says.
“I cared more about how it felt as compared to how it looked.”
As she sought out yoga classes for herself she realized that there wasn’t much in the immediate area of Cupertino and decided to launch her own studio.
There’s a variety of classes, from beginner to advanced, plus an introductory offer of $25 for all the classes you can fit in for two weeks.
One woman at least took full advantage of the offer and squeezed in all 30 classes the studio offers, East-D'Anna says.
Newcomers certainly don’t have to be as dedicated though, East-D’Anna says, but they’re welcome to it if they like.
Prices for classes range from $8 to $17 per class depending on if someone wants to buy a package or just come on a whim.
The most popular package has been the $64 package over a six month period, which works out to $8 per class.
East West Yoga is located in Cupertino Crossroads at 20670 Stevens Creek Blvd.