Kristina Karitinou

Kristina Karitinou

member of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga Association of Greece

Authorized by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois and later Certified by Manju Pattabhi Jois in 2012, Kristina is a Senior Ashtanga Yoga teacher and member of the Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga Association of Greece. She was qualified as an Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga teacher by her late husband, Derek Ireland and has been teaching the tradition of
Sri K. Pattabhi Jois since 1991. After many years of assisting Derek around the world, Kristina became one of the first Ashtanga teachers in Europe. While living in the UK, she was the main teacher of the Ashtanga Yoga Community at the Natural Health Centre in Brighton and was first to teach the method at Brighton’s Evolution Centre.
In 2001, Kristina and Michael Anastassiades established the Yoga Practice in London. Upon her return to Greece, Kristina’s focus shifted to the education of future Ashtanga yoga teachers and has since spread Derek Ireland’s teachings all over Europe, Asia and Latin America. For the past few years she has been actively involved in the practice of Zen chanting and sitting under the guidance of Zen Master Hyon Gak Sunim.

As a teacher, Kristina respects and appreciates the honest efforts of practitioners, their choices and the influence of their own teachers. Her mission is to support the Ashtanga method and community with honesty and devotion. Kristina considers herself honoured to belong to the Ashtanga lineage and believes that teachers and Gurus belong to the lineage, not the other way around.

Her teaching is based on the principles and techniques of Derek Ireland, one of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois’ earliest students and widely considered one of the most important yoga teachers of our era, having spread the Ashtanga method to and across Europe.
Kristina’s work is dedicated to Derek.

Kristina and her family are currently living on the beautiful island of Crete where she teaches the Primary, Intermediate and Advanced A Sequence of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga at her yoga shala whilst also offering classes, workshops, retreats and teacher training courses all year long around the world.

“We teachers, who guide the bodies and spirits of people, who have entrusted us to lead them to a new area of consciousness, have a great responsibility. Each of us has made his way with his culture, his personal choices, his emotions. These ways, our personal paths, were not always easy. They were often harsh and passed through different environments, with tensions and traps. Each time, reflection, attitude, and evaluation on what made it difficult for us, gave us the solution. Each time there was also an energy cost, a painful loss. But when one has imagined a destination, a path to personal fulfilment, which nevertheless never happens but is identified with the desire for harmony, the thirst for true life, and ultimately the journey, it is not overwhelmed by the adventures of the journey . Along the way, you often have to choose who you will go with and who you will leave in order to overcome obstacles that do not allow you to change your level. So, too, I left behind and leave behind situations, symbols and sometimes people, especially when they are plotting against my spiritual freedom and wanting to incorporate me into their plan without my will. The teacher is first and foremost free. Especially when it is involved in Greek culture and philosophy, where harmony and politics are ontological principles. So in the name of democracy and love, I wish to give space to them and what I left behind. But I do not, in any way, wish to enter into the vortex of various yoga civil wars, which, moreover, do not always start with spiritual differences and lacerate our space. I wish to perform as smoothly as possible and in the way that I now know, the spiritual and physical work that I believe will lead both me and my students to open heart and consciousness to eternal beauty and deep freedom … Let’s breathe freely…”