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hitPLAYyoga wants to highlight an amazing yogi in our community!

Dana Damara has embraced yoga as a lifestyle both on and off the mat. She radiates that power of soulfulness and spiritual awakening in everything she does. An author, yoga instructor, community connector, visionary and mother of two young girls, she embodies a balance of strength and grace, encouraging others to find that sweet spot within themselves.

She creates a flow that strengthens the body, opens the heart and quiets the mind. Her inspiration to dive deeper into the practice came when she began studying the subtle body. This knowledge not only shifted her teaching, but also changed her personal life, igniting within her a purpose to educate others about the power of yoga and how to take their practice to a more potent level.

With this purpose in mind, Dana authored ‘Oms From the Mat’. In her book, Dana takes readers on a journey of insightful lessons and they are brought closer to the joy and simplicity that is within us all. In reviewing the book, NY Times author Janet Bray Attwood remarked, “Her mantra of breathe, move, awaken resounds in each and every chapter and makes it not only an easy read, but a very welcome one for each of us who desire a simple journey to the soul”.  Here is a very special peak of  her new book:

Be A Giraffe

Did you know that the giraffe has the longest neck and the biggest heart of any mammal on Earth?

From an anatomical standpoint, it’s obvious why the heart is so big. The blood sure has a long way to travel to get to the brain! But let’s look at this a little more thoughtfully.

The giraffe is the tallest mammal on Earth. This lucky mammal has an aerial view of everything. He can see things from an elevated perspective. Imagine how clear things are to him. Wouldn’t it be amazing to be able to see yourself from above—to watch the way you communicate, react, and deal with life?

You can begin to understand this when you meditate and practice yoga on a regular basis. You can’t help but see yourself in a different light. You may even realize that you don’t have to be IN life, but you are only a PART OF life.

Interesting, isn’t it?

Now let’s take the big heart thing. According to the chakras, the heart chakra is full of compassion, joy, love, forgiveness, and happiness. Here is an animal that not only sees things from high above and witnesses clarity, but that also sees things with compassion, joy, forgiveness, and love. What would it be like to witness clarity in our lives and realize we aren’t our lives, but only a part of them? To watch our lives like a movie and accept that we are only a small part of the Universe? To release the responsibility we feel about how our life plays out? It would be wonderful to actually witness life going on around us without trying to control it and make it into what we think it’s supposed to be. It would be wonderful to actually watch our life from above and not be in the midst of it.

What would it look like to view everything with compassion and joy? Everything! We would see it because we were up high instead of buried under it. We would know that everyone around us was on the same path of living happily. We wouldn’t be so quick to assume or judge that maybe they were out to get us. We wouldn’t allow what they were doing to affect us so much because we would realize that it was all part of the plan. How would we be living if we lived with a big heart like the giraffe? Blissfully comes to mind.

Know that when you begin your yoga practice you may be in it: living in the midst of life. But when you commit to a consistent yoga practice, you become more like the giraffe. There’s more clarity, more openness, and more compassion.

Take a chance—try being a giraffe. It’s fun being tall and in love with the Universe!

Dana Damara is the very embodiment of yoga and we are proud to have her as a hitPLAYyoga instructor. She is currently teaching in San Francisco, California. Please check Dana out on hitPLAYyoga at:

You can also purchase her book at