Dana Kraft is a teacher, forever student, published writer, curriculum creator, and anatomy geek. Dana has worked with high profile private clientele on both the east and west coast, ranging from major league athletes, musicians, Broadway talent, top models, and film and television actors. She is the official yoga instructor to the 2015 NBA champions, the Golden State Warriors, and has worked with the UCLA men’s golf team and women’s basketball team. She provides Vinyasa, Restorative, meditation, and The Roll Model® Method to players such as Festus Ezeli, Andre Iguodala, Harrison Barnes, Shawn Livingston, and Splash Brothers: Steph Curry and Klay Thompson.
Dana truly is a “forever student” and gives thanks to her mentors, past and present, Kay Kay Clivio, Yogi Charu, Marco Rojas, Scott Harig, Alanna Kaivalya, Taylor Dunham, and Chrissy Canning, to name a few.
What do you do best?
I stand up for what I believe in. I am compassionate towards others. I’m really great at interior decorating, I have a sense of how color schemes work, and how furniture goes well together. I recently redid my boyfriend’s apartment (now mine as well) after I moved in. I’m a great listener. I’m loyal to those I love. I believe I’m a great teacher and leader.
What makes you the best?
This is an interesting question to ask a yoga teacher. I don’t think I am the “best” at anything. We can only be “our best selves”. I say to my students, “stay on your own mat”, when I see them looking at other students who are working on more advanced poses. I think it’s important to realize that wanting to be the best in comparison to someone else will only set us up for disappointment in the end. I DO have EXCELLENT work ethic! I get it from my father, and my grandfather, and my great grandfather. We have a family business that is over 100 years old! When I want to make something happen I work my butt off. I spend hours focusing on achieving my goals and working to make my visions into a reality!
What are your aspirations?
I aspire to create my own teacher -training program and own my own yoga studio or retreat center one day. I prefer to collaborate with others, so I hope to partner up with like-minded people who share the same values and ideas as I do and create something spectacular. I also love writing and I am starting to have work published. Eventually I would like to write a book.
So far? Landing my gig with the Golden State Warriors! They are amazing. I love the players. They are wonderful to work with and have been extremely kind and a lot of fun too!
Creating community in my yoga classes and building a strong following at the places I teach at. I’m proud of that. I believe that is so important.
Most Challenging Moment?
Deciding whether or not to leave my job as a high school teacher. It was heartbreaking. I loved working with kids and I spent five years at a performing and visual arts high school that I gave my blood, sweat, and tears to. It was a difficult decision to let go of that part of my life, but I was burned out, and decided I needed to choose a different path.
Take your intentions off the mat and into the world.
Kathryn Budig- she’s my girl crush. I would love to study with her.
My boyfriend. My family and friends.
My niece and nephew, they are 2 and 5, and absolutely beautiful. I love watching them learn new things. I can live vicariously through them and remember life isn’t so bad!
Ireland! It’s so green and lush, and the air is probably the cleanest and freshest I’ve ever inhaled.
New York City.
Any ocean that has clean sand and clear water.
I have a very big sweet tooth, but I mostly eat gluten free, so I love WOW Baking products. I love their individual brownies and chocolate chip cookies.
Any Devachan hair products
Cerave Moisturizer AM and PM
Yoga Tune Up® Therapy Balls
Manduka Pro Lite Yoga Mat
Teeki Yoga Pants
This might seem obvious, but I’m passionate about teaching yoga. It’s a calling for me. It brings me so much joy to be able to wake up every day and enjoy what I do. I am passionate about creating sequences, practicing with seasoned practitioners and being inspired to be better than I was the day before because of them. There is always something more to create, to study, to work on, and to understand. I’m passionate about my partner in crime. He’s my best friend and lover. He’s such a gift. I am passionate about music, the ocean, travel, chocolate, dancing, singing, wine, excellent food, friends, and my family who raised me.