Michael Murphy, now in his 60s, is a health and fitness trainer from Rhinebeck, NY. He is currently giving a weekend class at the Mirbeau Hotel and Spa in Rheinbeck, where he leads his students to a class with Yoga, spirit work and meditation. In addition, he also has a busy corporate career in Analytics and likes to combine his Health and Fitness training “advocacy” with his business career.
Body, Mind and Soul, with Health and Welfare Trainer Michael Murphy – Interview and Photography by Maxwell Alexander, EIC, Hudson Valley Style Magazine
We sat down with him to learn more about his practice and delivery in the Hudson Valley and NYC.
Maxwell: How did you start teaching Health and Fitness?
Michael: Well, after many years playing basketball, in my 30s I came across a Yoga class and found that it perfectly complemented my sports activities and also greatly improved my ease of movement in daily life. I was obsessed with adding this great practice to my life. Moreover, I had already been engaging in regular contemplative practices since the early 20s (mainly Zen and Vipassana) and Yoga body practices — how nicely complemented these.
In my 40s, in an effort to deepen my practice, I completed training with two wonderful Yoga teachers, Ganga White and Tracy Rich, with the White Lotus Foundation in Santa Barbara, and from there I gradually acted as a guide to Yoga classes in Corporation setting, which I have been doing for over 20 years now. I have been on the fitness teaching staff for both American Express and Bank of America for the past 10 years at BOA.
I have also worked in the corporate sector for over 40 years now, with the last 26 years working in Analytics for American Express. The old line that if you really want to learn something, try to learn it … … is what I have tried to live by. I like the challenge and richness of combining my business career with advocating for others guidance in Health and Fitness.
Maxwell: What is your Approach to working with your clients and your classes?
Michael: Having a passion and a host of interests in Wellness practices, my passion is combining Yoga with Breathwork and Meditation, along with Stability / Mobility Weight Practice practices – and building programs tailored to clients’ goals. In addition to my years of sharing Yoga, I am also an ACE (American Exercise Council) certified personal trainer as well as a BBM (Breath Body Mind) teacher. So I like to combine different aspects of Mind-Body practices. And whether it is one on one or in small classes in the Group, my goal is to gracefully nurture students health and healing, integrating body and mind; mixing the depth of Eastern traditions with Western forms.
Maxwell: Does your approach sound like it is geared towards a balance of different modalities?
Michael: Exactly … I think by using different practices we can approach a sense of balance. In other words, taking a truly Integral approach to one’s overall health…. And seeing how different practices nurture both our mental health and our physical health. And that includes what we eat, as we include a lifestyle that includes good nutrition (with casual foods!) And exercise along with relaxation. I myself have a 100% plant-based diet for many years and provide guidance to any client who may wish to move in this direction.
Maxwell: Any closing thoughts?
Michael: Well, it’s really a privilege to be a guide and service to others, in the field of Health & Fitness. I know living a healthy lifestyle is not always the easiest thing to do. Life gets busy and we feel like we are drawn in a thousand different directions.
But taking small steps from time to time and building habits – and seeing the improved quality of life they bring – can help you lead a healthier lifestyle, one where you are in more control. great to your health and well-being. As the saying goes … “adding years to our lives, but most importantly, adding lives to our years!”
You can learn more about Yoga Practice by Michael Murphy and reach him at michaelmurphyhealth.com