Glenn Brown, 2018 Men's Gold Medal
Glenn Brown moved with his family to New Albany, Indiana when he was 6 years old, and it is still his home. As the last of 6 kids he attributes sibling rivalry to his competitive edge. He began practicing yoga as a 17 year old as a complementary practice for meditation & kung fu. Finding his way through depression in high school he shifted his focus from swimming & wrestling to art, music, movement art, and meditation. He decided then he wanted to work toward being a Kung fu & Yoga teacher, and an artist & author. His search for a school, teacher, and work was difficult, but full of great life lessons. He finally met his Kung fu teacher, Sifu Keith Dwan of the Red Dragon School of Martial Arts, while Keith was visiting Louisville from England with his school for a Martial arts tournament. Glenn expressed his interest in form over fighting, and was invited to a Hsing-i Kung Fu, Qigong, and Acupressure training, which he attended in England in 2001.
In the spring of 2002 he went to his first Bikram Yoga class at Bikram Yoga Indiana where he met the woman who would become his wife, Ayanna. She was the only teacher at the time, and the co owner. She believed in his potential, and the studio sponsored him to go to Bikram Yoga teacher training the same year in the Fall. Glenn has taught at Bikram Yoga Indiana from 2002 to the present. He fell in love with yoga because of its similarities to kung fu & qigong, and its amazing diversity of postures & styles.
The day of his Teacher Training graduation he & Ayanna were invited to be competitors in a mock yoga championship at a judging & coaching clinic for the Bishnu Ghosh Cup International Yoga Asana Championship to be held in 2003. That experience lit the competitive fire for Glenn, and he has competed every year except for one, taking a year off to focus on coaching. He is the 14 time Indiana menâ€™s Regional Yoga Champion. He also continues his work as an artist & author, and self published his first book of poetry & art â€œ Four in the Fire â€œ in 2007. More work is coming soon.
After 8 years of teaching primarily Bikram Yoga he started teaching more private lessons based on his private practice. His kung fu teacher had encouraged him to continue developing his home practice so he could lead a personalized warm up & warm down for Kung fu students. Over the years this developed into his own method of qigong & yoga blended together. In 2010 Glenn founded Lionflow Progressive Yoga & Arts LLC , and has focused the past 8 years on practicing, teaching, and training teachers in Lionflow Yoga.
He feels Lionflow Yoga benefited his championship routine by teaching him to express where he is in the moment without heat, extra time in the pose, or intense breathing for body heat. The style focuses on calm intentional motion, breathing, and short holds in stillness. Learning to accept where you are today, and to have a conversation with your body instead of an argument.
Thomas Forbang, 2018 50+ Men's Gold Medal
Serendipitously introduced to yoga for the first time ever in 2012, Thomas Forbang today practices yoga daily for the ninth year in a row and has been teaching, training and competing since 2015. He is a certified yoga instructor (RYT-200) and teaches Bikram Yoga Hot 90/75/60 and Pilates. He was a USA Yoga board member from 2017 – 2018. He is also a current USA Yoga coach.
Thomas Forbang has a PhD in Computational Sciences from George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia (USA) and is a father of 5 and married for more than 29+ years. He is the Founder and President of CompInsTech – a leading IT company. Thomas Forbang speaks, reads and writes proficiently in English, French and Russian.
“To me, yoga is more than just a hobby, it is a true panacea and should become a lifestyle for all.”
Avalon Jade Theisen, 2018 12-17 Girls Gold Medal Winner