Coming from a strong athletic back ground it was the physical challenges of yoga that first drew me to the practice. But that soon changed to the combination of the physical and mental which has kept me strongly linked to yoga. I love that yoga constantly reminds me that my body and mind are directly linked and that it is not one over the other but the relationship of the two working together.
Shortly after beginning my practice, I left Charleston and moved to a small Caribbean island where there was no yoga offered. I struggled to maintain a practice and found myself going back to my old forms of workouts until a friend mention her desire to practice yoga. From that moment I realized how much I need the practice and how much I wanted to share my practice with others around me. That is when Island Yoga "Get your Dog On" was born and became a thriving studio on the island. I quickly felt the need for more information and got an online yoga certification but it was the many traveling yogi's that I would meet and learn the most from while I lived on the island. It was how openly they shared their practice and thoughts with me that has really shaped my own practice today.
When we returned to Charleston I was overwhelmed with the growth and popularity of yoga as well as the many styles, teachings and opinions on yoga. After, obtaining another yoga certification and still feeling confused and overwhelmed, I began to think that I would never experience the effortlessness and acceptance I had experience on the island. That is when I realized that I must trust that I am my "own" most valuable teacher and I began to fight for my own practice.
Today, I come to you as a yoga teacher and studio owner who wants nothing more than to share my yoga and my space with my community. I am passionate about what yoga brings into our lives and I am thankful to be surrounded by teachers who also feel that same need to share their yoga with others. With all the opinions and stigma that social media brings to yoga; I can only express that there can be no separation between who you are on the mat and who you are off the mat. Namaste
Years Practicing Yoga: 9
Years Teaching Yoga: 6
Baptiste Yoga / Power Vinyasa Flow
Yoga for Athletes
200 hr RYT / Certified Baptiste
Get to know me:
DESCRIBE YOUR UNIQUE VALUE ADD AS A TEACHER. WHAT ABOUT YOUR STYLE MAKES YOU STAND OUT?
I feel as though I have the innate ability to analyze the body, cue and direct people so they can increase their body awareness so they might reach their highest potential. My knowledge comes from having participated in, taught and watched so many physical activities that it feels like it is second nature to me. It's like a fun science project to teach and work with all body types, levels, ages etc. and see the gains they make as they become more aware of what their body can do.
Athletes are my greatest love because it is the opportunity to take a GOOD athlete and make them GREAT through yoga. I call it the "OM ADVANTAGE!" Athletes who practice yoga will gain flexibility, balance and whole-body strength that will improve their efficiency, power, recovery time and mental focus in their chosen sport. I truly believe that athletes who are not practicing yoga are competing at a disadvantage.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR INTENTION IN BEING A PART OF THE LOCAL COLLECTIVE OF GATHERYOGA?
I love the thought of being in a group of amazing yoga teachers who all have a strong desire to unite and share our love for yoga with each other and those who seek us out. I believe Gather can be more than a place for us to be individual teachers but a place to build a strong community that would offer both our individual yoga to others who are interested but also be an outlet to sustain and support each other as teachers. I see Gather as a place that is absent of competition but full of community. sangha, or community is an essential element in my practice and my studio so when we need support or up lifting our yoga gives us this - "one mat, one practice, one gathering at a time"
WHAT FIRST BROUGHT YOU TO THE MAT?
I first came to my mat after I lost my daughter to cancer. After a year of medical tests, treatments, surgeries my life was marked with frustration, rage and pain and then utter loss when we lost her on her 1st birthday. A very good friend suggested yoga to me because she knew how much physical fitness had been apart of my life and she knew the practice of yoga would not only heal me physically but mentally. Little did she know that yoga would become my lifeline. Yoga became a way to maintain my sanity, regain my balance and begin the slow process of healing and forgiving - ironically it became my "happy place". It was that "happy place" where I could let go, feel good but also use my breath to stay in a difficult pose which taught me to breath in those difficult moments of life. Yoga has taught me to maintain a sense of present/mindfulness so when I venture off into those dark memories or think about the "what if"s" - I can control that additional grief and suffering by redirecting and showing up for what is happening right NOW. Not to say that it has been an easy path or that I don't have those occasional meltdowns but when I do; yoga is the road map to my "happy place" so I can be there for myself, my family and friends.
WHAT INSPIRES YOU TO TEACH?
I am a lifelong teacher, teaching everything that I have ever loved. . . education, cheerleading, gymnastics, group fitness, fitness competitions, personal training and yoga. I teach the things that I am most passionate about in hopes that I can share that passion and love with others. I will tell you that I have a strong love for yoga and I am inspired daily by what yoga teaches me on and off the mat. As a teacher, I hope that I convey confidence in my students so they feel strong enough to not shy away from a challenge. Fear holds us back, but yoga can open up a new gateway to the brain, physical body and emotional body which makes us stronger.
My favorite quote
"if it doesn't CHALLENGE you ~ it does not CHANGE you" F. Devito
Charleston Community Yoga, Charleston, SC
Where all are welcome to DISCOVER their true selves, EMPOWER muscle and mind through motion and method, and UNITE with the body, soul, and community - one mat, one practice, one gathering at a time.
Our mission is to provide a physical and mental space for practices of all levels, gathering individuals from different parts of the community with a common pursuit - DISCOVERY ~ EMPOWERMENT ~ UNITY
Join me on the mat! Gain unlimited access to my teaching collections, each with a purpose and intention to bring the depths of my teaching to you, in your home practice space.