Red Mountain Resort, Yoga Teacher
How and why did you start yoga?
I started yoga back in 2000 when I needed to be certified to teach at 24-hour Fitness. I took a weekend basic certification through YogaFit and it changed my life. Since then, yoga has become so central to my lifestyle, mood and energy level so I pursued additional certifications in Kid’s yoga and Kundalini yoga.
Who was your great mentor/teacher?
My biggest influencers and mentors have been Harijiwan Singh Khalsa and Tej Kaur, their teachings, knowledge and experience along with their humor and love changed my life.
Tell us your practice style and how did you choose your yoga method?
I still practice Hatha yoga on a regular basis, but Kundalini yoga is my go-to practice when I want immediate results. I remember taking a class years ago and laughing at what I thought was silly and weird. I laughed because of my lack of knowledge of the deeper aspects of yoga like Pranayama, Mudras and Matras. Years later, my Hatha practice had evolved and I was ready for a deeper understanding of yoga beyond just performing postures. Kundalini came back around, and I took the teachers training in 2007.
What obstacles has yoga helped you overcome?
I am a fire personality by nature and have operated from my second chakra most of my life. Kundalini yoga taught me that the breath is the most accessible way to change your emotions almost instantly. I am less black and white in my life than I used to be and have more empathy and awareness.
I still struggle with anger, fear and resentment – traits of a fire personality - but the way I choose to handle things is different now and I find that I can snap back from those emotions much easier now. Kundalini yoga has given me a toolbox full of simple and useful tools for almost any situation, and I enjoying sharing these with students in class.
What in your mind set when you step onto the mat?
Depending on the day my mind set changes. Sometimes, I just want to move with ease and use my breath to gain awareness. Some days I am low in energy and need a little pick me up. At times my body is sore, and I need gentle movements and lots of rest. I use yoga to balance my physical, emotional and spiritual body and try to channel self-awareness as well as openness to the world around me every time I practice.
When did you understand you wanted to be a yoga teacher?
I was already a personal trainer and group fitness instructor, so teaching yoga seemed natural to me.
What is the most rewarding part of being a yoga teacher?
Seeing faces and body language of students change before and after class. Energy levels are affected so greatly, and I love seeing the afterglow as well as the renewed commitment to taking time for themselves.
Why is yoga so important for the times we’re living in?
Technology is advancing at paces our physical bodies and energetic bodies can’t keep up with. We are supposed to be more connected with one another because of technology, yet we are feeling more disconnected not only from ourselves but from the world around us. We need tools to bring us into more self-awareness and time to diffuse our bodies and minds from the massive amounts of information moving through us every day. I believe yoga is the medicine for this.
Anything else you want to share?
I think it’s important to ask yourself from time to time how you can apply yogic teaching into your everyday life. This is the key. I believe yoga isn’t just something we do for an hour in a cool outfit.
Where we can we find you? Instagram, website, etc.
I’m currently taking a social media break. I teach yoga classes at Red Mountain Resort in Ivins, Utah and am focusing on being as present as possible for everyone who attends our classes and retreats.