Meet Your Teacher: Rachel

March 18th 2016 DSC_5563-Edit-Edit.jpg

Here at Your Yoga we see you as part of the family, so we're giving you chance to meet our teachers and get an insight into who they are and why they love yoga! Meet the lovely Rachel Ashman...

1. HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN TEACHING YOGA FOR?

I have been teaching Vinyasa Flow yoga for three years. I am proud to say that I have been working at Your Yoga Studio since it opened. Teaching becomes more rewarding each year as I see my students reach different milestones on and off the mat and I develop more presence in my classes.

2. WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME A YOGA TEACHER?

I started practising yoga during the first year of my PhD study (I hold a doctorate in marketing) when life was lonely, stressful and I was in pain. I used to go to lunchtime Ashtanga and Jivamukti classes in my local gym and then come back to my desk shattered but happy. During this time I also took part in yoga events and attended workshops. Whilst each workshop was different I realised that there was a correlation between the teachers who were sitting in front of me (I always plonk myself directly at the front of class!!). They all seemed to have the same peaceful yet quiet self-confidence which I was severely lacking. As I matured in my practice over the subsequent years, learning lessons and picking up strategies for developing internal strength, I realised that I had the ability to be a leading light to people. This made me want to train and start teaching!

3. WHERE DID YOU COMPLETE YOUR TRAINING?

My main 200 hour Vinyasa Flow training course was completed in Thailand with Briohny Smyth and Dice Lida-Klein. They teach the Fit-Flow method which focuses on harnessing strength through using creative sequencing peppered with arm balances and inversions.

4. WHAT QUALIFICATIONS HAVE YOU RECEIVED FROM YOUR TRAINING?

I hold a a diploma registered with Yoga Alliance at the RYT-200 level. I have also completed Jivamukti Immersions and a 40 hour Ashtanga teacher training.

5. WHAT IS IT YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT TEACHING YOGA?

I like seeing people work at their edge. The tears, the smiles, the grimaces, the tense toes and the looks of shock and delight when they do something they didn't think possible.

6. WHAT IS YOUR TOP TIP FOR PEOPLE THINKING ABOUT STARTING TO PRACTISE YOGA?

Go to a studio and get on the mat. Train with teachers that you gel with, who help you switch the lights on. Keep getting on the mat again and again even when you don't want to. Try not to compare yourself to others. Be prepared to develop strength through embracing your own vulnerability.

7. DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE POSTURE?

I have changing favourites at different times depending on where I'm at in my life. For a long time I liked Pincha Mayurasana (forearm stand) because for me it represents such a mountainous challenge. At the moment I like Parsva Upavista Konasana (Wide-Legged Side Stretch) because it represents finding joy in the simple things. As I do more yoga I realise that simple things have a lot more nuance than we give them credit for. They are to be respected and relished, not skipped past.

8. WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR OTHER INTERESTS OUTSIDE OF YOGA?

I am a woman obsessed by food. I love to eat, cook, read menus and talk about food. My favourite time of the week is Saturday afternoons. I cook in my kitchen while my partner potters about upstairs. I am pregnant at the moment and I can't wait to make packed lunches for my child. I don't think there is anything nicer in life than having a packed lunch.

9. WHAT WOULD YOU SAY THE BIGGEST BENEFIT OF PRACTISING YOGA IS?

For me the biggest benefit of practising yoga is creating a little bit of space, so that you have a chance to reflect honestly about yourself and uncover an unbiased reality piece by piece.

10. WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE SOMEONE COMING TO ONE OF YOUR CLASSES FOR THE FIRST TIME?

Take it easy. Come and introduce yourself :-) I'd love to get to know you.

 

To sign up for a class with Rachel, take a look at our Timetable.