Born in Chile in 1947, Gustavo started his yoga studies in India in 1972 at the Theosophical Society in Chennai and every year since he has returned to India to study with BKS Iyengar (15 years), Pattabhi Jois (continually for 2 years), TKV Desikachar, Shri Yogendra and many other teachers not known in the West.
Gustavo speaks 6 languages and has lived 20 years in Japan, 10 years in Europe and 2 in India. In his working life he was CEO of a mining company in Belgium and Chilean Ambassador to Japan. In Chile he founded one of the largest and best-known schools of yoga (www.yogashala.cl) and he teaches extensively throughout South America. His wellness and retreat centre, Canal Om (canalom.com) on the Pacific coast near Santiago, is featured in many publications including ‘Great Yoga Retreats’ by Taschen.
He has developed his own style of yoga, Sattva Yoga (meaning balance and harmony) which promotes physical and energetic symmetry, corrects chronic back problems, optimises the function of internal organs and increases muscular tone thereby enhancing flexibility. This method emphasises the opening of the hips and the stabilisation of the spine and can be practiced in a flowing manner (Sattva Vinyasa), using the wall (Sattva Chikitsa) or with a partner.
In 2003 he was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma stage 4, a very aggresive and incurable cancer of the immune system – and given just 6 years to live. This was a turning point in his life and he is determined to defy the statistics, using yoga and Ayurveda as the main tools to stay well and strong. He shares his experience of this in a book just released, “Yoga, Ayurveda and Acupunture as a complementary treatment of cancer”.
He has published 15 books on yoga and several DVDs. He has been teaching throughout Europe this year. Gustavo has a relaxed yet very focussed approach, is very personable and enjoys immensely sharing his knowledge with students everywhere.
To contact Gustavo write to firstname.lastname@example.org
From early childhood Valeria has been involved in drama and dance. In 1996 she began to study with Gustavo Ponce to learn his methods. In parallel, she studied with teachers such as Sw.Digambar, Sw.Ekananda, M. Chaselon, R. Turla and many others. Currently she is training teachers at Yogashala.
Vistara was born in Germany but has lived in Chile for the last 10 years. In 1992 she started practicing Iyengar and Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga at the “Ecole National de Yoga de Paris”. In India she studied with Sw. Shankaranangiri. She speaks German, French, Spanish and English.
Polly is a Chilean-Israeli, she was a journalist in Israel and has studied yoga with many teachers in Israel and all over the world. In 2004 she obtained her teacher´s certificate in Yogashala and today she teaches Gustavo Ponce´s methods there. She speaks Spanish, Hebrew and English.
Sebastian is an economist. He has studied with various teachers in the Iyengar tradition such as Faeq Biria, J.M.Vigar, R. Turla and also with Gustavo Ponce. In 2012 he spent 6 months studying at the “Himalayan Iyengar Yoga Centre” in Dharamsala, India. He has also studied Ayurveda and Astrology. He speaks Spanish, English and French.
Cristian is a professional international snowboard competitor and teacher. At the age of 18 he started to travel around the world and had his first encounter with yoga while living in France. In Chile he took the teachers training with Gustavo Ponce. He speaks Spanish, English and French.
Carolina is a dancer. In 1996 while deepening her studies of dance in the USA she discovered yoga. She lived in London for 5 years and continued her yoga studies there. Her main teachers have been David Williams, Arun, Vinod Dulal and Yaroslav Popovich. In 2011 she began 3 year’s training with Gustavo Ponce.