Tori Ostendorf

I fell in love with teaching because I found out there’s so much more to yoga than I originally thought. My favorite part is sharing that with other people and showing them how yoga, if given the chance, can transform your life (as Live, Love, Pray as that sounds); it’s more than just exercise. It’s more than a good Instagram post of a cool pose. It’s more than just a fad. It’s life-changing. 

I Never Saw It Coming

Before Yoga, I was angry and depressed. I could see how unhappy I was but I didn’t know how (or didn’t want to) change it. I was happy being miserable because it was comfortable. It was a time in my life when I had little to no direction and didn’t even care. I didn’t realize that my mom making me go to yoga was going to do away with all of that. I went because my mom half made me — she knew I needed to snap out of that incredible funk I was in. It was affecting everyone around me. I thought yoga was just movement and exercise... boy was I wrong; I was surprised by how it transformed my thoughts, my emotions, and even my life.

I was totally taken off guard concerning how it brought about this change, this shift in thinking. It did it in such small ways at first, but it ended up changing so much more than I originally thought. Yoga provides me with the tools I can use to focus and instill peace in my life. It allowed me to work through things, it allowed (and continues to allow) me to process my life when everything seems so unorganized. It helped me let go of what no longer served me, which is something mom has always told me.

With yoga, you’ll always learn something new... about the practice and about yourself.

Those Sneaky Benefits

Yoga works with you personally, spiritually, emotionally, etc. — the subtle energies of the mind and body. I’m continually drawn to learn more about the meditation side and all of the more “hippie” stuff so I can teach people who aren’t usually drawn to/understand it. What I’m finding is that there’s scientific research that backs up all the "hippie" stuff. Which just comes from us gaining a better understanding of the brain and how it works (and in my opinion, not being so scared of nonconventional ways of thinking about our bodies and minds).

Inspiration in the Struggle

Honestly... my inspiration is most of my fellow yogis at Kai Yoga Studio. It's not just because they’ve become friends (some like family), it more has to do with the fact that it’s the people who struggle with it (or feel as if they’re struggling I guess I should say). Because I know for me, when things aren’t easy or when I can’t do poses right off the bat, I get frustrated and let it fade out of my interest. It’s the people that are having to work around a constant road block, limitation or injury that inspire me. The people who are really busy, the people that feel like they don’t belong in a yoga studio, those are the people that keep me motivated. Anyone that fights for it on a daily basis has my deepest respect and inspires me to keep getting on my mat.


  • Sonja Ostendorf


  • RYT 200, Kai School of Yoga

Instagram Tori Ostendorf