About


Real Yoga for Real People

Real Yoga
This was in response to the many forms of athletic yoga in North America that view yoga as a an athletic workout or a physical practice to get a bikini body.

Namaste Yoga connects the physical with the philosophical and historical contexts of yoga. We focus on all levels of our experience from our physical bodies to our thoughts, emotions and our breath to our spirit.

Some of the series we’ve focused on include Hindu mythology and the stories and meanings behind the yoga postures, the yoga of emotions, the “yoga jargon” from the yoga sutras, the yamas and niyamas all the while still attending to the needs of beginners with beginners classes and series.
Real People
We are definitely not size zero magazine models demonstrating yoga postures to perfect execution. We are real people with real bodies and real limitations. We do our best in the postures and Melissa offers lots of modifications in the poses.

We live real lives in the real world. We are busy and we can’t always get to the yoga studio, live in areas where there aren’t any yoga studios, or can’t afford the $20+ for a yoga class. Namaste Yoga offers the opportunity to take free weekly yoga classes as well as a membership site for those who want to go deeper in their practice for a reasonable price.

Who is Dr Melissa West: Living your Yoga with Dr. Melissa West

Every once in a while somebody asks me where does the Dr. in Dr. Melissa West come from and so I thought I would make this video covering a little of the history of the academic training I’ve had. I began my academic studies at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo Ontario at the school of music where I spent many hours performing both solo and in orchestra on the flute, however I received an honour degree in music theory. My first degree is a Bachelors of Music degree. From there I moved on to McMaster University in Hamilton Ontario and studied Music Criticism. My thesis was on Music, Emotions and the Role of the Body and I received a Masters of Arts there. I started my Ph.D. in Music at York University but after two years I transfered into Communications and Cultural Studies. This is where the doctor part comes in. I received a doctor of philosophy in Communications and Cultural studies from York University. My dissertation was titled Marketing Madonna: Celebrity Agency Across the Culture Industry, The Processes of Commodification and Audiences’ Meanings and Practices. As far as my yoga lineage, I spent a lot of time practicing yoga at Esther Myers Yoga Studio in Toronto almost immediately following her death. My main teacher there was Tama Soble. My certification comes from Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy and I am a certified Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapist, Group Facilitatory and Yoga Teacher through their organization. My main teacher at Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy was Elisa Cobb. In this video I explain how each of these places have influenced my teachings today. Namaste, Melissa