TJ’s Yoga story began when he received a book, the Tao Te Ching, as a gift from his sister 18 years ago. The book poetically explores ideas that resonated with him then and continue to guide him today.
With an MFA in art and 6 years as a grade school art teacher TJ has a deep appreciation for the journey of self-exploration that is essential to learning. After years of travel, research and meditation TJ decided that the inward journey would be his focus. He began seeking out teachers to deepen his understanding and go beyond the limits he had reached on his own.
He took up residence at CAVE in Brooklyn NY, a Butoh Dance & performance space and began to study movement with several visiting teachers from Japan. During that time he also began practicing Shaolin Kung Fu and Tai Chi with Sifu Shi Yan Ming, a 34th generation Shaolin Temple monk. Soon after he travelled to San Francisco to study Zen Calligraphy with Kazuaki Tanahashi, a teacher of Zen Buddhism.
When possible, TJ also attends lectures and teachings offered by HH The Dalai Lama, including the Kalachakra Mandala teachings that were offered in Washington DC in 2010.
Several years ago TJ’s journeys finally led him back to Taoism via Yin Yoga beginning with Bernie Clark’s 60 hour Yin training in Vancouver. Next he studied with Corina Benner in her 30 hour Yin training in NYC. After that he found Stephanie Calhoun and took her 100 hour Yin training in New Brunswick. TJ liked Stephanie’s teachings so much he chose to pursue his 200 hour Yoga teacher training with her. From there he continued with her 100 hour Chakra training and 100 hour Restorative Yoga training, completing his 500 hour training in 2015. In November of that year TJ completed a 30 day solitary self-guided meditation retreat at Milarepa Center in Vermont.
TJ founded YUJMU in 2014 to share the subtle practices that had brought him so much joy and wellness. Currently focused on Yin Yoga Teacher Trainings YUJMU has grown to reach an international audience creating highly trained Yin teachers worldwide.
Most recently TJ went to Kripalu Center in Massachusetts to broaden his training and completed the first part of a Thai Yoga Massage certification with Sukha Wong.