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From Above

Koghan Yoga Center


David Martin

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Dave as a boy in India


I fell in love with all aspects of yoga as a boy. My father worked for Tata steel in India and would occasionally take our family over to India for his work. I enjoyed the stories of the Mahabharata, the Bhagavad-Gita, the colorful festivals, temples, and used yoga postures whenever I got injured. In 1976, when I was teaching gymnastics at Ohio University, I asked the head of the department if we could bring in an experienced yoga teacher. He told me the best way to learn a subject is to teach and, surprise, I was a yoga instructor.

Using a spiral folder “light on yoga” with a series of easy postures with the salutation to the sun and a Savasana using mind journeys from the book “Mind games”. After a few school terms I built up to full classes teaching 25 students per night five nights a week from 1976 until 1982. About a year after I started teaching, I was approached by Dr. Maung Gyi, whose father was the famous U Ba Than Gyi in Burma at the end of World War II. We knew each other well and he asked me three questions. 1. Would I put the time in to master the 33 main consecutive postures in the Hanthawaddy Yoga system complete with the Koghan system of zones. 2. To complete a book. 3. That I would I share these systems so they would not get lost to the future generations. I said yes and learned them all the way through. Life has its twists and turns, in 1982 I started a rafting company “Upper Yough Expeditions” and got caught up in things which distracted me from my goal. For this last chapter of my life, I am dedicating it to fulfilling the promise I have made to Dr. Maung Gyi. I am selling my home in the states to create a yoga center in Costa Rica, committed to sharing Hanthawaddy Yoga with the Koghan system of zones.

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