Matt is one of Ohio's most experienced teachers of Yoga and Meditation. He has been teaching Yoga and meditation since 1976 and has been certified since 1984. He loves teaching traditional Yoga mediation, Yoga Nidra, as well as traditional asana classes. He equally enjoys introducing new students to the joy of Yoga as well as giving certifications to graduates of his school's Yoga Teacher Training program.
Matt is an E-RYT-500 and is the Director of Yoga Teacher Training at the Spiritual Life Society and Yoga Center of Hudson (www.AUM.org) in Hudson, Ohio, and a former director/teacher at Free Akron Yoga in Akron, Ohio. (https://www.facebook.com/FreeAkronYoga) He is a life-long resident of Hudson. For more info on Matt, click here: http://yogateacher.org/matt.lerner/index.html.
Matt grew up in Hudson and is a 1974 graduate of Hudson High School. Shortly after Matt moved to Madison to study at the University of Wisconsin, a friend gave him the book Be Here Now by Ram Dass. He was intrigued and began practicing Yoga and meditation on his own, following the simple instructions in the book. Matt took his first formal Yoga and meditation classes when he returned to college in the fall of 1975. He began teaching Hatha Yoga the following year, and in 1980, at the direction of Swami Rama, Matt began teaching meditation and related practices.
Matt studied and worked under the guidance of Swami Rama at the Himalayan Institute in Honesdale, Pennsylvania, for six months in 1979, and another six months in 1982. He was a member of the Himalayan Institute Teachers Association (HITA) and completed all their coursework. In 1984, Matt was certified to teach Yoga by Behrmam Guard, aka Yogiraj Behrmaji. Behramji was also a disciple of Swami Rama. Behram had mastered Hatha Yoga in India under the guidance of B.K.S. Iyengar during the 1960s. Behrma received the title "Yogiraj" ("King of Yoga") from Swami Rama when they met in the US.
Matt's teaching style is a blend of the gentle, meditative practice of the Himalayan Institute and the precise alignment of Iyengar style. In addition to having had close personal relationships with and being inspired by Yogiraj Behrmaji and Swami Rama, Matt has also studied with many other teachers and many other styles, including studying Kundalini Yoga.
While studying Psychology at UW, Matt was appointed president of the Yoga Meditation Society of Madison, an affiliated center of the Himalayan Institute. He led the Yoga Teacher training program there, and the principals that he had learned became the foundation for the formal Yoga teacher training program at the the Spiritual Life Society. Matt moved back to Hudson in 1982 and soon began teaching along with Larry Terkel, who had founded the Spiritual Life Society a few years earlier.
Matt has a BS in Psychology and MBA in Management from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He has a full-time day job as an executive at a multi-national packaging company, and travels to India regularly on business, usually logging about 100,000 miles/year. In November-December, 2014, he spent 5 weeks in India, mostly on business, but was able to spend about two weeks studying Ayurveda and Yoga during that trip.