The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast
157: Horse Wisdom Yoga with Fotini Chandrika Walton
You may have noticed that there has been a trend in recent years surrounding yoga and animals - puppy yoga, cat yoga and even goat yoga. These are variations of yoga where animals are present during the yoga practice. Fotini Chandrika Walton offers her clients something unique - Horse Wisdom Yoga.
Fotini Chandrika Walton is the Founder of the Big Red Barn Creativity and Wellness Centre Inc., a non-profit organization in Ontario, Canada where she offers an Equine Guided Wellness modality, Horse Wisdom Yoga®. Fotini was introduced to the Yogic lifestyle at 6, and officially began her yoga practice in 2004. Through a journey of personal transformation, Fotini uncovered the power of yoga in combination with the ancestral wisdom of Horses, where the non-predatory nature of the Horse and the principles of Yoga bring to life the ancient history of horse-human connection.
This is a very specialized form of combining time with horses and yoga. Fotini shares how it is more than just doing yoga with horses grazing in the practice area, and explains what a session with her and the herd might look like. We also dig into the challenges around describing what your unique yoga offering is to someone who has not experienced it before, and how Fotini approaches marketing in a very novel way.
This was a fascinating interview to learn more about how one yoga teacher is incorporating unique elements into their offering of yoga, and finding a niche that sets them apart.
[5:55] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Fotini Chandrika Walton.
[7:21] Where did Fotini's yoga journey begin?
[10:42] What is the work that Fotini does now, and who does she do it for?
[14:40] How did Fotini really start working with horses and yoga in the same modality?
[16:45] It is difficult to describe the experience that Fotini offers and to explain what she does to someone. She shares more about how she explains it to others.
[19:34] How does Fotini explain her special niche in yoga to others?
[24:14] What "structured" marketing does Fotini do to get the word out about her business?
[28:10] How do Fotini and her horses work with clients?
[32:33] Fotini shares more about the training sessions she has lined up.
[33:02] Fotini outlines what an initial session would be like for a client.
[37:57] Shannon and Fotini discuss what could come out of a session of Horse Wisdom Yoga.
[40:31] How often do clients work with Fotini?
[42:02] What are Fotini's prices like?
[43:52] What is Fotini's recommendation for yoga teachers who are interested in learning to facilitate Horse Wisdom Yoga?
[46:19] Learn more about Fotini and her work at her website.
[47:30] Shannon shares her experience with Horse Wisdom Yoga.
Quotes from this episode:
"I feel like everything is yoga."
"I am really authentic in how I present myself to the world, and I think that has been my greatest asset when it comes to 'marketing' my business."
"Your biggest job is to take care of you."
"Abundance is not always going to show up in the form of a monetary exchange."
"I do believe that people become more intuitive the more they listen."