I originally posted this in my social media, but I though it might be useful if I posted it here too. Here it is, how I started and what led me to where I am now...
I started practicing yoga in 2001 while living in Calgary. I had moved there to do a reflexology course (I've never done reflexology again since finishing it! Oops.) I was on the phone to my sister and said to her "Do you know what I want to try?" And without ever speaking to about it before she said "Yoga?" There was a hot studio down the street from me so without having a clue away I went. It was so intense but something inside me loved it. Weirdly I knew by my 2nd class that I was going to be a yoga teacher but I was too shy to tell anyone for about a year.
In 2002 I went to teacher training in LA for 9 weeks. At 20 years old it was the biggest challenge I had ever gone through. I cried. A lot. But going through that training made me a lot stronger, physically and mentally. After training, I came back to teach at what is now Calgary Hot Yoga The amazing owner Kim Mcmullen was kind enough to take me under her wing. Thank you Kim!
After 2.5 years of teaching in Calgary I got the opportunity to move to Hong Kong and teach at Pure Yoga Official Page. I taught a lot. In the beginning I cried a lot. (Notice a theme?!) And I learned so much. Patrick Creelman, Paige Faraci & Forrest Yoga were hugely influential to me and taught me so much as a student, a teacher and as a person. The teachers at Pure became like family, many of whom I still count as best friends. I hold such a special place in my heart for my time there and am so grateful for it. 💖
After 4.5 years in HK, I convinced my then boyfriend, now husband, to let me move back to England with him. (He was a tad hesitant! Lol.) After teaching so much in HK I was pretty burned out and unsure if I even wanted to teach anymore. Once we got to the UK I missed my yoga family in HK and cried a lot (there it is again!) But as fate would have it a new studio called Breeze Yoga in Beckenham was opening close to where we lived and they needed teachers.
Breeze Yoga ended up being my home studio for the 7 years I was in London and I have so much love for it! Right from the beginning the students there were so friendly and open.
I did find the first couple of years in England really challenging though. After working with and living so close to all of my best friends in HK, the suburbs of London felt really lonely. I didn’t love it, and London didn’t always love me either... About 6 months after arriving in England I had an audition at a large yoga studio in London. In hindsight I was young and cocky coming from teaching at a big studio like Pure in HK. I remember walking to the tube station afterwards and thinking about how well I did, of course they'd hire me! Turns out, they didn’t feel the same. They passed on me. The woman who did the interview emailed me some critiques of my teaching afterwards, which deep down I knew were true. I cried a lot (here we go again) when I read the email and then some more when Neil got home from work. My ego was bruised and I felt so embarrassed, I didn’t tell more then 2 or 3 people for years afterwards. Situations like that are so hard to swallow at the time, but I took her critiques to heart and I know it made me a better teacher. It’s taken me until my late 30’s to start to understand that failures are some of the best opportunities to learn. That learning experience made me all the more appreciative of what I had at Breeze.
I ended up working at some other lovely studios in London, but I always taught the bulk of my classes in Beckenham. I taught a butt load of 6:30am’s and had a lot of early morning heart to hearts after them. I do think getting up so early for so long ruined my ability to ever sleep in, but on the flip side I also think it prepared me for having kids lol. The students and the staff there were always so supportive and helped me feel like England was my home. They saw me through homesickness, buying our first house, getting married, as well as my first pregnancy and birth. Many of the students and staff are still dear friends. I will always be so appreciative and grateful for my experience teaching there.