In 2012, I enrolled in The Yoga Sanctuary Teacher Training course. During the Hatha and philosophy portion of the course, Deborah was our teacher. One of the first things I noticed about Deborah was how her love and knowledge of yoga shone through when she taught. She didn't just dish out information but invited us to become, in her words, critical thinkers. Deborah generously shared everything she knew about yoga - lessons that I found invaluable and that you can't always get from a book. Every time we got together, Deborah showed up with a smile and infectious enthusiasm. She created a learning environment that was warm, open and well, just plain fun. To me, Deborah is the embodiment of a great yoga teacher. Both in practice and philosophy, I have learned so much and because of her, I want to keep on learning. That's what yoga is - a path, a journey, a desire to keep on discovering. I consider Deborah not only my teacher but also a friend. Anyone who is fortunate enough to experience Deborah as a yoga teacher, will be truly blessed.
~ Molly Kay, The Yoga Sanctuary, YTT grad 2012~
There's something about Deb and her energy. I love being around her, and it's not just the great yoga classes
that make her so popular. - Angelika Aitkin, Artist -
Deborah has been my yoga teacher for about two years now at the Timberlane Athletic club. She is extremely well schooled and dedicated in her chosen field. Her breadth of knowledge on both the physical and spiritual aspects of this five thousand year old discipline is quite remarkable. Deborah also frequently attends other classes and workshops to help improve her knowledge, showing a willingness to constantly learn and evolve as a yoga instructor. I would highly recommend her as a teacher to intermediate and advanced students. -Laura Anagnostakos, Founder, Turtle Island Recycling
Deborah is one of the most honest and open yoga teachers I've had...with a knack for the spontaneous. This, combined with a good knowlegde of alignment and discipline, has helped me to find my feet. The best thing about her class is the joy and love that she exudes and and inspires within others. - Gail Birkett, VisualArtist & Mathematician
When I started yoga, I tried out as many classes as possible to find the right "fit" for my practice of yoga. When I joined Deb's class, I knew I had found a perfect facilitator for not only the physical practice of yoga, but also for the facilitation of spiritual growth through yoga. She shares her deep knowledge of the subject in a selfless manner. As teacher, Deb brings to her classes physical discipline and a tranquil space for self exploration and actualization. - Carli Kinnear, Partner: Strategy & Transformation, Mergers & Acquisitions, IBM Global Business Services
Having Deborah as a yoga teacher and mentor has made a tremendous difference in my personal journey that began 3 years ago and continues to grow daily. I have so much gratitude for Deborah – she is passionate and caring enough to pour months, years, decades into cultivating her students' understanding and appreciation of yoga – she is equally graceful in her yoga practice and her life's training. The sense of satsang that flourishes between the Deborah and her students is transformative and invigorating!
Deborah has given me a fearlessness - to speak in front of groups, to express myself freely and creatively, to take personal risks. All this is reflected in the expression of my sequences, in the way I can manage a class, in the way I offer modifications and in the inspiring thoughts to share. She has also reaffirmed that my own yoga practice is an expression of my own faith. More than ever before, my practice has given me a sense of peace, expansion, inner strength and resiliency needed to face the complexities of life today.
Deborah recognizes that the learning is endless!
Thank you Deborah for giving me and my soul a home this past year. I couldn't have had a more inspiring place to immerse myself.
~Janessa Gazmen, 2012 YTT Graduate~
Deborah is a great yoga instructor and teacher! I have been practicing yoga for over a year and have had about 5 different instructors. I consider Deborah my best instructor. The five instructors have their unique way of conducting their classes but none offer the quality, knowledge or the motivation that Deborah brings to the class. Every class Deborah makes sure all the movements are done correctly, insuring risk of injury is limited. I have found each class is different and she explains what she is trying to achieve and the muscle groups she wants to focuson for the class. Deborah motivates by her humor, precise instruction, fun movements and most of all, by the "feel good" one achieves at the end of the class. - Pat Morra, Entrepreneur
I have been a student of Deborahs for over 2 years and throughout that period, I have learned so much.Yoga is one of Deborah's passions and it shows through her teachings. Deborah teaches you how to do the postures correctly and takes the time to show you. Knowing a wide range of different types of Yoga,she always makes the classes interesting. She challenges you as her student, but always reminds us that yoga is a personal journey.With her knowledge of anatomy, Deborah is able to explain what specific areas we are working on and always keeps us balanced. I thank her for being the best yoga teacher I have ever had! - Doris Neumann, Visual Merchandiser
I have found classes with Deborah to be uplifting and energizing. She provides a personal, positive approach, noticing the class dynamic as well as each yoga student. Deborah shares her knowledge of the principles and ideas behind yoga, as well as her joy in life, and in we her class, as we develop. She has been known to marvel "Isn't it great to be in a body?" Her loyal following of students clearly value her as a teacher and guide. In the asanas, Deborah stresses proper alignment, breathing deeply and settling in. She explains the broad mechanics well and also the fine tuning once in the postures, as we learn to simultaneously lengthen our spines and provide stability through our cores. Visualizations and analogies are used to illuminate her ideas and to encourage "energy moving in equal but opposite directions." She moves about the room and supports and gently adjusts our postures. She also playfully challenges us to try new asanas-- or at least the preparation steps-- and to face our fears of being in unfamiliar or challenging positions. There is a focus on prana and breathing deeply, on developing one's own inner wisdom and understanding, of respecting and caring deeply for oneself and the fellow yogis in the class. The spiritual quality and tone of the entire class is palpable. Deborah's teachings are about much more than striving for physical fitness--they are surely about the body, but also the mind and the spirit. It has become a metaphor for my life, to be more flexible, strong, balanced and calm in the face of new challenges, and I thank Deborah for her knowledge and guidance along the way.-Lynne Hoevenaars, Psychologist , York Catholic District School Board
Deborah's greatest strengths as a teacher include her keen interest in my individual learning curve and the joy she brings to yoga practice. Her knowledge about how the body works helps me to go deeper into poses that I ever thought possible. Every practice is different, deep, and meaningful. - Dr. Luigi Girolometto, University of Toronto
I have had the opportunity to practice yoga with Deborah on a regular basis over the past year. As a teacher she approaches her practice from a traditional spiritual center and engages her students to learn in a safe practice environment. She strives to know her students on a personal level, which guides their individual development in yoga. Her classes are dynamic and she often requests input from students for the direction of each class as she courteously asks us "How is eveyone's energy today - are we feeling vigorous or would we prefer to relax gently"? She brings a variety of learning into the studio, not solely based on the asanas. It is a pleasure and a joy to be a student of Deborah’s. - Lorie Crawford, Clinical Herbalist & Wholistic Nutritionist
I want to tell you want a great teacher you are. I have progressed in my practice because of your teaching. You have a way of knowing what the people in the class need and deliver it with such wisdom. Your step by step description of things so simple (at first glance) brings such deep lessons, of my practice and in my life. I am amazed when you have us sitting simply aligning our chakras to such fine detail ... simple right ... no no no ... I broke a sweat with the engagement. It was awesome. You are an amazing teacher and I am grateful to have you in my life and to learn from you at such a deep level. I remember the class with you where I learned finally how to jump my feet forward in between my legs - I swear you taught that class for me alone. And then there was the day when I watched in awe as you guided another student, slowly with patience and guidance in her head stand. Each of your words, guiding, encouraging, directing with patience and knowing that all comes in time. I went home and mastered it myself, hearing your voice in my head as I slowly lowered my legs with control. There are many other points in time that I have had ah ha moments but I won't go on. Thank you Deborah for all you give of yourself in yoga. It is a gift and I am grateful to receive it. Love, Faye. - Faye Blondin, Learning & Development Specialist, Regional Municipality of York
Having studied and trained with many “rock star” yoga teachers over the years including John Friend and Sean Corne, I have to say that Deborah Whipple is a rock star in her own right. She brings a depth of knowledge not only of asana but also philosophy and holistic wellness to her classes. Her classes are always challenging, highly original and full of fun and laughter. Deborah is always present for each of her students individually and collectively, and her attention to detail is impeccible. She is one of the best, most inspiring teachers I have ever met and I always come away from her class having learned something new. -Jennifer Marcello