Corina Benner is a long time, devoted student and teacher of yoga based in Philadelphia, where she founded Wake Up Yoga in 2002 following a stint working on Wall Street. Wake Up Yoga continues to thrive as a vibrant community today, and Corina has earned the distinction of being a renowned Yin Yoga teacher in addition to teaching Vinyasa which she has studied under some of today’s most influential teachers. Our own Creative Manager Julia Clarke met Corina at a Yin Yoga training in Virginia Beach in 2014 and we were thrilled to welcome her to last’s year’s Eagle Yoga Fest. Her classes were so well-received we can’t wait to have her back this year. Julia was teaching at Wake Up Yoga recently and took a few minutes to sit down and get to know Corina a bit better:
JC: If you could only take one sutra from the Yoga Sutras with you to a desert island, which one would you take?
CB: The 36th sutra in the first chapter, vishoka va jyotishmati or ‘to calm the mind, contemplate the effulgent sorrowless light that is already within,’ contemplate the light that is already within you.
JC: I knew you would have an answer!
CB: There are so many to choose from but that one is probably my absolute favorite.
JC: If you only have five minutes to practice yoga, what to do you do?
CB: Heart Bench! Oh my gosh heart bench.
JC: What’s your favorite food?
CB: Brown rice. Raspberries.Yeah, I love grains, greens and legumes. And I like the one pot meal. So whether it’s a stew, a soup, a salad, or a stiry fry, I like the one pot meal.
JC: Now I’m hungry. You’re in an elevator and someone asks you why you teach yoga. What do you say?
CB: I’m glad you’re asking me this before the two minutes in the elevator so I have time to refine it! I teach yoga to awaken the student’s inner teacher to inspire their inherent curiosity so that when they are not in the yoga studio, on a yoga mat, they are inspired to pursue more about what yoga is. That’s what I think my job is. I teach yoga to make the world a kinder place
JC: I love it! Last questions: Where is your favorite place on earth?
CB: (laughing) I think it’s gonna be Thailand! My first answer is Paris, I love Paris, and then I could tease that out to all of France, but I don’t know if that’s more memory and more ideal. My favorite place… You know it occurred to me that the only difference between “there” and “here” is a “T” and “here: is also in “where” so here and where and there, it’s all here, so I guess my favorite place is here!