1.) How did yoga become part of your life? What led you to a devoted yoga practice?
Yoga became a part of my life because I was looking to add something more to my regular gym and running workout regimen. . .little did I know I was about to get WAY more than I signed up for! When I first started practicing, there was a moment after I went home from a class and the message that the teacher delivered during class had stuck with me. And a few days later, the message was still with me; I even asked a friend, "is this what yoga is suppose to do?" she had no real answer haha.
I realized I had been floating around in life feeling like I wasn't serving any purpose...and then I found yoga and what the practice is all about. For many years I suffered from horrible self-destructive thinking and poor body image and it was yoga that saved me from myself which is why I devote myself to it. It's made me a better girlfriend, daughter, sister, and friend.
2.) What do you think is the biggest misconception people have about yoga?
I think there are two very big misconceptions about yoga. The first is that yoga is a religion. It certainly has religious ties and spirituality can be prevalent in classes, but yoga itself is not a religion, it is simply a way of life.
The second is that yoga is all about the poses. A yoga practice is firstly about breath first, then the pose. I remember distinctly in a class early on when I began practicing, that a teacher said, "when you master the breath, you have mastered yoga.” At the time I thought 'ya right, lady!' But after many years I was able to find the truth in that statement and to believe in it. The pose gets "easier" when the breath grows stronger.
3.) Name three non-negotiables in your life.
This is a hard one! One is my devotion and love for this practice. Another is time integrity. It is very important to me that I respect others time (along with my own) and show up when I say I am going to. The last is having positive, healthy, and loving relationships.
4.) What is the pose that challenges you most? Why do you think it challenges you?
This is a great question because it is ever-changing! Right now that pose King-Pigeon. Flipping my grip is something very new to my body which is challenging me when coming into this pose. Not only is the flipped-grip tough, but allowing myself to open from my heart-center and not the low back is quite difficult. I am giving myself permission to be okay with exactly where I am in this pose. I cannot wait to see where the journey of this pose will take me.
5.) If you had to pick one mantra to share with your students, what would it be?
The mantra that I live by and know that I share with my students already is: love over fear. Choosing love in all things we do is such a freeing, happy, magical way to live!