Heidi took her first yoga class over 5 years ago, when a friend suggested that yoga would help her with the stress of her job and to get back into shape. She instantly loved the physical workout, and as she continued practicing, she started to feel better – less stressed out and more in tune with herself. She enrolled in a 200-hour teacher training with YogaWorks in 2011, while living in Los Angeles. After earning her certification, she started teaching classes after work and on the weekends. It didn’t take long to realize that teaching yoga and dedicating her life to health and fitness was exactly where she belonged. She left her banking career of 10 years, moved back to Seattle, and dove head first into teaching.
Heidi’s classes are designed to challenge students, but also encourage them to listen to their body’s needs in the moment. Simple yet fun sequencing allows all her students to practice at a level that works for them. Every class places emphasis on the breath, awareness of the body and alignment, and an opportunity to strengthen and create flexibility in body, mind and spirit.
Read on for a brief interview with Heidi!
How/when did you begin practicing yoga?
My friend took me along with her to class and I was hooked. It was power yoga, which appealed to me at the time because of the physical challenge. Over time, I began to pay more attention to the meditative aspects of the practice and felt myself changing. It was such an amazing experience to shift my perspective and feel how empowering practicing yoga and yoga philosophy can be.
What is your favorite part of teaching?
I like knowing that what I’m doing is contributing to someone else’s well-being and happiness. In my previous career, I couldn’t say that. So every day that I get to teach class, I am glad to be part of my students’ experience, and hopefully the part of their day that they look forward to.
What is your favorite pose?
I have two. Handstands, because I am still on the journey of truly learning this pose, and I love how my commitment to learning it has completely changed my core. I’m so much stronger and lighter on my feet because of the work. My other favorite pose is Uttanasana, specifically holding the rag doll variation. It feels so good to stretch out my back and hamstrings, especially first thing in the morning.
What one piece of advice would you offer to new/aspiring yogis?
Be open to the experience. No judgment or expectations, just come as you are. This could be the most amazing, eye-opening and rewarding journey of your life.
What one piece of advice would you offer to yogis considering Teacher Training?
My training experience changed my life. This was partly because I was open to allowing that change to happen, and also because my teachers really resonated with me. I think it’s important to have a dedicated practice over time before jumping into training, and also to know your teacher well. This person will be a huge part of your experience, so make sure that their style and personality jives with you.