My brilliant career: It's all about connecting to the inner self
WHAT does a yoga teacher do?
A yoga teacher creates a safe space for people to explore themselves through their bodies. This exploration is the catalyst to healing the body, mind and emotions. Yoga touches every part of the body and the benefits it brings to your overall wellbeing are vast and varied.
A yoga teacher will inspire people to dare to go deeper into their locked spaces, which could be tight muscles or a tight state of mind.
In teaching yoga, I am thrilled and inspired when a student lights up with recognition of something they have just understood. I love watching this intelligence unfold in their bodies - from the most basic movement of bone and muscle to achieve a pose, to a level of focus and concentration that is tangible on their mat.
What kind of yoga do you teach and how does it differ from the other styles of yoga?
I focus on IndiYoga, which is about connecting with your independent spirit.
What training did you do to become a yoga teacher?
I received my 200-hour (2001) and 500-hour (2011) certificates with the International Sivananda Vedanta Centre and have been registered as an experienced yoga teacher from Yoga Alliance USA. I have continued my education through exploring as many avenues as possible in yoga, and fields related to yoga, to learn the skill of yoga and teaching yoga.
What attracted you to yoga ?
On a personal level, I have a busy mind and needed something to still the chaos.
I walked out of my first yoga class standing a couple of inches taller - not just physically, but emotionally. The next day, I floated through the day, feeling much lighter and like I had less of a load to bear. I was sold.
Yoga gives my body strength and, as a result, gives me a sense of strength and confidence in myself.
Have you always been a yoga teacher?
I started working in finance, and did yoga to manage my stress. When I started my studio, I combined finance and yoga. It's a marriage of the intellectual running of a small business and the heart of yoga.
Your job is obviously not a nine-to-five one. What does your typical day look like?
A class is a two-hour process. Thereafter the time is my own, and I spend it developing the services offered at my studio.
If I have my business hat on, I switch on my computer and see what is happening in my world of yoga and choose an area to focus on. Usually the e-mails dictate the direction.
Do you have your own yoga teacher?
I often attend yoga classes of other teachers at Haum of Yoga or workshops offered by other yoga teachers, but I don't follow a particular teacher or guru.
What advice would you give to someone keen to become a yoga teacher?
Teaching yoga is almost as good as doing it.
Which of your character traits make you a good yoga teacher?
My attention to detail - of the yoga student's body unfolding on the mat, the mind and how it works, the yoga and its many caves of philosophy and insight to be sought out and revealed.
My love for yoga and my enthusiasm for the physical experience as a portal to a deeper experience of myself are what people are drawn to - I think.
What do you find difficult about your job?
Service delivery. I have the disease to please, so running my own business has been daunting in learning the lesson of letting go of trying to please everyone. I have realised that is impossible, although it challenges me every day.
What is your favourite time of day?
I am not known for being an early bird, but when I do get up before dawn, this is a glorious time of day as it is so peaceful. For the same reasons, I am a night owl - there are no interruptions, just a stillness around that feels expansive and breeds creativity.