I am an adventure seeker, heart-on-my-sleeve wearer, student of yoga, world traveler, laughter advocate, dream chaser, fruit addict and compassion preacher.
Born a “Vancouverite”, I have since been extremely fortunate to travel the world and live in places like Melbourne, Halifax, Alabama, and Calgary, which lead me to the most amazing people and experiences. I now look back and realize that one of the things travel gave me was yoga! I was never introduced to the practice while in Vancouver. I only started exploring yoga when I was 22 years old.
Yoga came to me while I was training to play professional beach volleyball. My beach partner suggested we try hot yoga for cross-training during the winter season. My first impression of yoga was very humbling, so humbling that I did not enjoy the experience at all. I walked into a humid, extremely sweaty, hot room expecting to be good at yoga since I thought myself as above average in strength and athleticism. About 10 minutes into class I realized I could do none of the postures properly and I was always one step behind the Baptiste sequence. How were all these people that my ego believed I was stronger than doing all these amazing arm balances and headstands?! I was frustrated when I left, comparing myself to everyone else in the room. I continued to practice once a week, determined to ‘win’ the competition of being the ‘best yogi’ in the room. Unfortunately this hugely competitive ego of mine got in the way of my enjoyment of yoga and my understanding of what yoga is truly about. After a few months I stopped practicing and did not try yoga again for almost a year.
In November of 2013, I revisited the idea of yoga when I was living in Alabama while supporting my boyfriend’s pursuits in professional hockey. I wanted to do something daily while he was training at the rink, so I found a Groupon for a local yoga studio and checked it out. From the very first class was IN LOVE. The environment of this studio was very different than the first studio I had tried. This yoga studio had an amazingly supportive community and, fortunately for my ego, was not competitive at all. The teachers actually wanted to get to know me and watch my practice grow. It was such a wonderful feeling to walk into this studio as a daily visiter and be welcomed as a part of their family. I quickly learned that yoga is much more than just the physical asana practice; there is meditation, breath, spirituality, and finding true self. As soon as my eyes opened to this journey of endless growth, I was so excited for a life full of learning! The idea that this ancient practice of healing has so much to offer that it cannot be learned in just one lifetime is an exhilarating thought; it’s a lifelong adventure of self!
Ever since I fell in love with yoga, I have taken a step away from volleyball, realizing I did not have the same passion I used to for the sport. In the end I was only training and competing because volleyball was all I had known and identified with. I had pushed my body to its breaking point through volleyball; I had knee surgery, I almost needed shoulder surgery, and I had overuse injuries that potentially could cause me pain for the rest of my life. Yoga was the first athletic experience that finally healed my body instead of hurting it. It was also the first athletic activity that had me focus on my internal development versus my development in comparison to others. It was healing for both my mind and body. I am not saying I will never play volleyball again because I’m sure I will! I will just play for fun with renewed joy in the sport, leaving the extreme competition and negativity in the past.
Yoga rekindled my love for learning, love for my body and love for my inner-self. After all of this realization, I decided I wanted to grow my practice and share it with others so I enrolled in the Yoga Teacher Training 200hour program at Yoga Passage in Calgary. I graduated as a more loved and more connected version of myself. In addition to this 7 month 200 hour teacher training, I have taken several additional trainings such as 30 hours in Yoga for Athletes, 15 hours in Advanced Anatomy, and 15 hours in Prenatal/Postnatal Yoga.
If you made it all the way to the bottom of this post, thank you for your incredible support! Each person I’ve met along this yoga journey has added value to my life in ways I cannot explain; no matter how small or long our interaction was, you helped me become who I am today, which is the happiest chapter of my life so far. May each of you feel the joys of compassion, be blessed with love, and find your true light.
Love and light,