I started practicing yoga in January 2017 in the middle of a very stressful job search that left me mentally and emotionally exhausted, and not feeling like myself. I needed an outlet to clear my mind and work out the frustration, so I joined a local studio that had a new student deal, and haven't looked back since. Soon after I joined the studio, I created a yoga Instagram account to track my progress, hold myself accountable and maybe win a pair of leggings in the process! Not only has my Instagram helped me track my progress and get me into the habit of keeping up a daily practice, I have also met some of the most incredible people through my page, and connected with more like-minded humans than I could have imagined.
Although my practice started as one to escape my negative feelings, I've actually been able to tune into all of my emotions (positive and negative) more through yoga than ever before. My practice has changed me, not only physically, but emotionally, mentally, and socially as well.
I generally practice a mix of Ashtanga and Vinyasa (with some Yin thrown in as well). I love the strict, linear practice of Ashtanga - probably because of my Type A personality. I also enjoy being able to directly compare one day of practice with another, since you are doing the same set of pose each time. I do love to flow and tap into my creative side, which is where my Vinyasa practice comes in. Most of the flows you see me posting on Instagram are snippets of Vinyasa style flows I've created myself or practiced in a class.
In February 2018, I traveled to Bali, Indonesia to complete my 200hr Yoga Teacher Training through All Yoga Training (www.allyogatraining.com) and am now a registered yoga teacher through Yoga Alliance. I currently teach at LiveURYoga in Roswell, Georgia on Saturday mornings, and I am booking privates (Skype/FaceTime or in-home) and workshops in the area as well. I also have retreats coming up in the second half of 2019, so for more information on those, you can head to my 'Retreats' page!
I was a gymnast for 12 years, and a cheerleader for another 7. Although those two sports (mainly gymnastics) have helped me tremendously in my inversion and arm balance practice, flexibility was never a strong suit for me, and I was always one of the least flexible ones on my teams. Only through yoga and listening to my body have I been able to achieve the level of flexibility I have today.
I get lots of questions about how my gymnastics background has influenced my yoga practice. Besides helping me with handstands and inversions, I enjoy adding transitions while I'm practicing that tie back to gymnastics - such as cartwheels, forward rolls, back walkovers and what not. I'm lucky to have a body that remembers these things well, so muscle memory kicked in quickly once I started playing around with them. Gymnastics certainly helps me in my practice, but it is absolutely NOT a requirement for starting a yoga practice!
Outside of Yoga
Outside of yoga, I have a full time job in Atlanta that I absolutely love. I ended up at this job just about a month after I started practicing, and my co-workers and bosses have been beyond supportive of my yoga journey. Otherwise, I love just about any sport I can watch, however college football (Go Dawgs!), college basketball (Go Heels!), gymnastics, tennis and figure skating all hold a special place in my heart. I've been lucky to travel to many places around the world, a few favorites being Oxford, UK where I studied abroad in 2013, and Villefranche-sur-Mer, France where I lived for 3 months in 2016 in a French language immersion program.
A couple other fun facts about me - I have a weakness for oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, I have two kittens, Mia and Finn (who feature on my Instagram every so often), and I can sleep just about anywhere, especially on planes!
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. When/how did you start yoga?.
I started yoga in January 2017. I first started by joining a studio that had a 30-day special for new students, and have continued going to studios in my area since. I also started a home practice using a couple of different e-books, apps and YouTube videos on a daily basis. You can read more about my yoga journey on my “About Me” page!
Q2. How do you take your photos on Instagram?
My dad takes my photos! Well, most of them. Occasionally my mom will take some, I'll use a screenshot from a video, or I’ll schedule a photo shoot with a photographer if I’m out of town. My dad uses a Nikon D850 and either a 200 f2 or 70-200 f2.8 lens.
Q3. Were you a gymnast or dancer before starting yoga?
I was a gymnast and cheerleader for a majority of my life before starting yoga. Never a dancer though (although I wish I had been! The grace...). However, having prior experience in gymnastics, dance, cheerleading, acrobatics, etc., is NOT a requirement for starting a yoga practice. Anyone can start and practice yoga! Of course my background helps me in some areas, but being a former gymnast (or even athlete in general) is not the end-all-be-all for yoga.
Q4. Where did you do your Yoga Teacher Training?
I did my YTT in Nusa Lembongan, Bali through All Yoga Training, which is an intensive Ashtanga Vinyasa program. They also have a location in Thailand. You can visit their website here: https://www.allyogatraining.com/yoga-teacher-training.html or their Instagram @allyogatraining for more information! I’m also happy to answer any questions via email or DM.
Q5. Do you do any other workouts besides yoga?
I do, but nothing too specific. Some cardio, mainly power walking, and bodyweight/mobility exercises. I also like jumping/skipping rope, swimming, playing tennis, and hiking.
Q6. Do you have an online channel where I can practice with you?
Not YET! I am currently in the process of getting something new and exciting set up for you all to practice with me, and if you've signed up for my newsletter, you'll be the first to know when I have my first video(s) out!