Matthew Darling is the director and instructor at Ashtanga Michigan. He has been a devoted student of his teacher, Sri K. Pattabhi Jois and the Ashtanga method since 1995. In 2002 Pattabhi Jois authorized Matthew to teach the method of Ashtanga yoga and at Ashtanga Michigan we offer the program in the same spirit it is offered in Mysore, India today.
Over the years he has made numerous trips to the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute in Mysore, India to study under the guidance of his teachers, Sri K. Pattabhi Jois and his grandson, Sharath Rangaswamy. He continues to be inspired by and deeply respectful of their life’s work to maintain and uphold the purity and the unique therapeutic quality of this traditional method of yoga.
Matthew seeks to preserve the traditional Ashtanga method by maintaining a daily practice and teaching his students with the same integrity and patience that was taught to him by his teacher.
I began the pursuit of yoga in 2000 and connected with Matthew Darling in 2002. With the exception of some injuries along my journey I rarely miss a day of practice. I began teaching the Ashtanga Series in 2013.
The heightened awareness I experience draws me to my mat each morning. I have discovered such depth of our inner life force far more than I could have imagined. My passion is to share the positive effects yoga has had on my life in hopes of continuing this positive effect among others.
Jill came to the Ashtanga yoga method in the summer of 2014 after building a thriving massage therapy career that provided Jill with a thorough understanding of the human body. Graduating at the top of her class from the Ann Arbor Institute of Massage Therapy, Jill accepted an invitation to enroll in its instructor/TA program. After a year of teaching and practicing massage therapy, Jill gave Ashtanga yoga a try.
Since the very first sun salutation, Jill found a deep connection to Ashtanga yoga and maintains a daily yoga practice. Jill asked Matthew Darling to be her teacher, and through dedicated and devoted practice with him, developed a solid, stable connection that guides her daily. It didn’t take much for Jill to decide that she wanted to go to India to study the Ashtanga yoga method within the same lineage as her teacher.
Jill arrived in Mysore for the first time in November 2014 where she met her guru, Sharath Jois, the grandson of Matthew's guru. During her third trip to Mysore in 2018, Sharath gave her his blessing to teach the method as a level 2 authorized Ashtanga yoga instructor. Jill now apprentices and assists Matthew at Ashtanga Michigan in Royal Oak.
This method has inspired and motivated her daily to enthusiastically look deep into herself and transform her obstacles into a joyous celebration of life. The Ashtanga yoga method has given Jill a vehicle to move skillfully and gracefully through her challenges. She’s on the road to sharing those wonderful experiences. Jill is humbled by an opportunity to inspire others to experience the wonderful gift of Ashtanga yoga.