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Before giving birth to her son, Wolfgang (now two years old), cover model Stephanie Snyder practiced yoga for three hours daily. "It was very luxurious. And then everything shifted," says the San Francisco vinyasa yoga teacher. "Now motherhood is my primary yoga practice." Today, Snyder, who collaborated with Yoga Journal on the Yoga for Strength and Toning DVD, leads teacher trainings; tours with her husband's punk band, Rancid; and still finds time to practice daily. "Punk is about taking your circumstances and making the best of it. It's hard-core," she says. "Like yoga, it regards realizing the truth as the ultimate road to freedom."
In his early 20s, John Schumacher realized health would be a major factor for his future well-being. "That understanding opened the door to yoga for me," he says. Schumacher, who created this month's Home Practice sequence (see "Core Values," page 59), embarked on a journey that led him to study with B. K. S. Iyengar in India and to become a certified senior Iyengar Yoga teacher. He is also the founder and director of Unity Woods Yoga Center in Washington, DC. Forty years later, he still believes that the refinement of consciousness that yoga can bring will help us achieve our potential as human beings. 'And that," he says, "is why I keep on practicing."
Photographer Ryan Donnell's photojournalism background leads him to always seek out the story behind the picture, a trait he brings even to his portraiture. (See "Pay It Forward," page 22, and "Yoga's Grande Dame," page 188.) He researches his subjects before meeting them, and then takes time to develop a rapport before he begins to shoot. The session is built around what he discovers. "Everything is very environmental with me," he says. "This tells as much for me as the person's face does." His work has been published in Essence, Outside, and Runner's World magazines. He and wife Catherine Lucey a political reporter, live in Philadelphia.
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