The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

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Dec 30, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

149: Yoga for Anxiety with Amanda Whiting



Anxiety disorders are one of the most common mental illnesses in the world, with almost 300 million people globally dealing with an anxiety disorder. This means there is a chance that one or more of your students may be dealing with anxiety, or even coming to yoga to help with their anxiety. How can you, as a yoga teacher, help them and what are some of the things to be aware of? Amanda Whiting has some insights on this topic.


As someone who has been managing her own anxiety since she was two years old, Amanda is no stranger to anxiety. Yoga has taught Amanda that through asana, breathwork, and meditation, anxiety can be more manageable, and an overall sense of wellbeing is inevitable. Today, Amanda helps others work through and manage their own anxiety and mental health conditions through a variety of yoga classes, workshops and retreats, as well as free meditations, yin classes and yoga nidra.


Amanda explains what having an anxiety attack feels like, and anxiety is a uniquely personal experience for each person. She shares how yoga can be a part of the prescription for mental health, why loving kindness and self-compassion is so important, and even what happens if someone has a panic attack in your class. Amanda approaches this sensitive topic with openness and heart, and this episode is full of so much useful information that all yoga teachers can use.


Key Takeaways:

[5:22] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Amanda Whiting.

[6:49] What is the work Amanda does now, and how did she get there?

[9:57] What does having an anxiety attack feel like?

[12:28] Amanda shares her thoughts about why anxiety exists.

[16:20] How has Amanda's experience with anxiety from such a young age informed the work that she does now?

[17:50] Amanda and Shannon discuss why "love yourself" is so difficult in practice.

[19:25] What are some ways we can change the neural pathways that make it difficult to love and connect with ourselves?

[23:51] Amanda shares her spin on the loving kindness meditation.

[25:51] How does loving kindness and self-compassion come in when dealing with anxiety?

[31:27] How can yoga teachers go about offering yoga for anxiety?

[34:11] Anxiety is a uniquely personal experience for everyone who has it, and it can manifest in different ways and forms.

[37:24] Why is yoga helpful for anxiety, and what are the other prescriptions for anxiety?

[43:20] What can yoga teachers do if someone has a panic attack in class?

[49:49] For the majority of people, anxiety is not something that can be fixed or cured or that goes away entirely, but something they live with and manage.

[52:20] Connect with Amanda via her website or social media to find out more or learn how you can work with her.

[53:14] Shannon shares some of the upcoming things to look out for.




Loving Kindness Meditation:

Bring your attention to yourself - without any parameters or exceptions - you as you are in this moment.

With this awareness of you, repeat to yourself:

May I be at ease.

May I open to what arises.

May I know that I am enough.

May I love myself just as I am.


Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity and Pelvic Health Professionals


Quotes from this episode:


"[Anxiety] can be a byproduct of everything."


"We live in this right-away society, and I think that's really a blessing and a curse."


"We have so much ability to love others and have compassion for others, and yet, somewhere along the way, it's become that that's not okay for us to have for ourselves."


"If you are someone who is struggling with accepting and loving yourself and having compassion for yourself, you need to focus on you."


"Even though anxiety has become way more noticeable, it is still really not understood." 


"I don't allow the anxiety anymore to control my life, but that doesn't mean that it's not part of my life."


Dec 23, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

148: Stress Incontinence and Yoga with Melissa Dessaulles



Something that affects 33 million Americans, 3.3 million Canadians and almost 400 million people worldwide is a topic a lot of people aren't talking about - urinary incontinence. That’s a shocking statistic, and all the more reason to address this issue - expert Melissa Desssaulles is just the person to talk about it.


Melissa Dessaulles is a registered physiotherapist with extensive training in the management and treatment of pelvic floor dysfunction and perinatal health. Melissa is also the founder of Mommy Berries, which offers a postpartum program to guide new mums through the early healing phase in a way that promotes healing and recovery of the pelvic floor and core muscles. Apart from her physiotherapy work, Melissa also  dedicates time to raising awareness about common pelvic floor issues such as prolapse and incontinence through informative sessions.


Urinary incontinence and pelvic floor dysfunction is something that affects a lot more people than we think. Melissa explains the difference between stress and urge incontinence, why leaking occurs, abdominal weakness postpartum, and how yoga during and after pregnancy can help in addressing some of these issues. Stay tuned to the end to find out more about Melissa’s free resource for pregnant people, as well as for a very special discount on Melissa’s postpartum program, just for listeners!


Key Takeaways:

[5:00] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Melissa Dessaulles.

[6:45] Who is Melissa and what is the work that she does?

[9:18] Urinary incontinence and pelvic floor dysfunction is something that affects a lot more people than we think.

[11:37] Urinary incontinence or leaking is common, but it's not normal. Mellissa explains how she approaches the topic without making people feel bad.

[14:33] What is the difference between stress incontinence and urge incontinence?

[17:15] Melissa highlights some of the options available to people who have stress incontinence.

[20:51] How can yoga and the tools of yoga help someone who is dealing with stress incontinence?

[23:43] Listen to Schedulicity's hot tip of the week.

[24:48] What is Melissa's advice for people who are doing Kegels exercises and are still leaking?

[28:59] What are some circumstances when people might be more likely to experience stress incontinence? Melissa explains why stress incontinence in pregnant people or just after having a baby is normal.

[32:50] Men also experience incontinence issues.

[33:32] What happens to the pelvic floor muscles during pregnancy and delivery should be treated like an injury and addressed accordingly.

[35:20] Who can Melissa help from the standpoint of physical therapy, and when would she refer them to other options?

[38:34] Yoga can be a powerful tool to help with body awareness and empowering people on their healing journey.

[43:15] Find out more about this topic and Melissa's work on her website, Instagram or join her online program.

[48:17] What were your key takeaways from this episode?




Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity and Pelvic Health Professionals


Quotes from this episode:


"It's common, but it's not normal." - Shannon


"Every muscle needs to be able to move to do its job well." - Melissa


"What we work on is we find out why YOU are leaking so we can tell you what your muscles are doing and see what your habits are, and then maybe give suggestions." - Melissa


"I don't think we would see so much incontinence persisting if we just acknowledged that those muscles have been through something." -Melissa

Dec 16, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

 Ep 147: Core Myths with Lauren Ohayon



At some point, either as a student or teacher, we have heard the phrase "engage your core". Some people are even conditioned to think that they should do this all the time! In actual fact, doing this is not as beneficial as we think it is, and it can be limiting to function and movement. Lauren Ohayon is an expert on the topic of core and pelvic floor issues, and on this episode, she busts through some of the common myths about core strength.


Lauren Ohayon is the founder of Restore Your Core, an online program addressing pelvic floor and core dysfunction, and helps thousands of women globally through her online programs, and Facebook groups. Lauren is internationally recognized for specializing in core and pelvic floor issues, and has 20 years of experience teaching yoga, pilates and functional movement. With her comprehensive exercise programs that are designed to be effective, safe and sustainable, Lauren focuses on helping people exercise well and move efficiently to gain core strength and ideal pelvic floor function. 


When it comes to the core, many people assume that all core exercises are created equal, but this isn’t the case. Lauren reveals the differences between different core exercises, and busts through some other myths around building core strength. She also explains what the core really should be doing and when, and dives into the issue of intra abdominal pressure, and conditions like prolapse and diastasis.


This is a hot topic that will benefit all yoga teachers, both in your own practice and in cueing certain poses, so be sure to tune in.


Key Takeaways:

[5:53] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Lauren Ohayon.

[7:22] What does Lauren do and who does she do it for?

[8:42] When did Lauren start focusing on pelvic health and the core?

[10:58] What is the core, and what is the core not?

[13:08] Shannon and Lauren discuss their interpretations of the Core Four.

[19:46] It is not always important to name muscles or dive into the anatomy to help people.

[21:45] We often hear the phrase "engage your core". Lauren explains why this is not always helpful, and sometimes it can even be limiting to function.

[25:10] Lauren explains the specific type of breath that engages the core, and why it engages the core.

[27:57] Lauren highlights the difference between engaging your core and bracing your core.

[30:54] Why have we gone so off track with our breath and how the core is working?

[34:41] Lauren shares an analogy that she has learned.

[36:46] What are some of Lauren's favorite core strengthening movements and poses?

[40:04] Lauren shares some of her variations for boat pose

[44:24] What are the three Bs that Lauren brings attention to?

[47:22] What is something Lauren wishes yoga teachers would know about the core?

[51:27] Connect with Laura on her websites or her Facebook groups to learn more.

[52:21] What was something you picked up from this interview? Shannon would love to know.



Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicity and Pelvic Health Professionals.


Quotes from this episode:

"Your core is really the integrated function of your whole body."


"In core function, one of the main elements of core function is that our core is designed like any other muscle in our body, to be reflexive, automated."


"If your core is not kicking in, ...whatever it's not doing, ... tightening it is not going to teach it to get there."


"To me, "engage your core" means to do a very specific type of breath. Your core will naturally pull in with that."


"We don't want excessive tone anywhere in our body. ... More tone is not always better."


Dec 9, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

 Ep 146: How to Empower Your Yoga Students with Yonnie Fung



As yoga teachers, we want our classrooms to be safe spaces that empower our students and maximise their choice, but this may not always be the case. People may come to our classes wanting us to tell them what to do and trust that it's our job to know better, and also, some practices in yoga may erode empowerment, take away student agency, and undermine safety.


Yonnie Fung recently wrote an article on this topic, and what it means to teach inclusive, safe and ethical yoga. She is the founder of Yoga with Yonnie, an award winning yoga and movement space in Beijing that focuses on small classes, non-commercialism, integrity and cultivating real human connections. Yonnie values a collaborative learning environment over an authoritative styles, and seeks to help students and clients in discovering what they need to feel well and whole. 


Some common practices in modern yoga fall short of what we want to achieve. Yonnie and Shannon dive into why replicating inherited behaviours and practices from past generations may not necessarily be appropriate, and how yoga teachers can move away from dis-empowering their students.


This episode is in no way about shame and blame. We often look back at the things we could have done differently as newer yoga teachers, and that work is sometimes uncomfortable. Listen in if you would like to learn more about how we can move forward as yoga teachers to empower our students and increase their agency in our classrooms.


Key Takeaways:

[4:59] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Yonnie Fung.

[6:15] Where did Yonnie's journey with yoga begin?

[9:44] What made Yonnie decide to become a yoga teacher?

[12:05] What is the work that Yonnie does now?

[18:53] What prompted Yonnie to write her list of how we might be unintentionally harming our yoga students?

[23:16] Did Yonnie expect her article to go viral? She shares her experience with publishing her article.

[25:36] How did Yonnie develop her list?

[26:21] Shannon highlights some of the things that stood out to her from Yonnie's list.

[26:43] One of the items on Yonnie's list is participating in power structures. Shannon and Yonnie discuss the power dynamic that exists in a yoga class.

[34:06] Yonnie shares a powerful experience she had during her yoga teacher training that has influenced her way of teaching yoga.

[37:37] It is a common thread in many settings where the teacher is expected to know the student better than the student knows themselves!

[38:26] This week's hot top from Schedulicity!

[39:15] Yonnie highlights how teachers making adjustments to students' postures is not empowering.

[41:28] What are some of the ways that yoga teachers can move away from dis-empowering their students? Yonnie highlights how the language that we use can be the simplest place to start changing.

[48:37] What is Yonnie's response to yoga teachers who want to say as few words as possible in their classes?

[50:10] It can be challenging for students to learn how to listen to their body. Yonnie explains more about interoception and how this ties in with trauma and yoga.

[53:45] Yonnie and Shannon talk through an example of how this might play out in a class.

[57:19] It takes a lot of pressure off the teacher if we understand and accept that the students are the experts of their own bodies.

[1:02:01] Yonnie has subsequent follow-up articles that she has written on this topic.

[1:05:26] Get in touch with Yonnie via her website or on Facebook.

[1:06:18] What are some techniques you have learned to empower your yoga students? Share them with Shannon!



Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicity and Pelvic Health Professionals.


Quotes from this episode:

"There wasn't one single incident. You could say that there were lots of little incidents and it happened very steadily over a period of time that suddenly hit critical mass." 


"It was encouraging to know that I wasn't alone, and that other people had these frustrations and concerns."


"Yoga at its best is an empowering path."


"We're practicing disembodiment from a really young age."


"I think it's very important to distinguish the promise of yoga and the potential, from the actual delivery as it plays out."


"It doesn't matter how good your intentions are as a teacher."


"You can have all the best intentions in the world, but if you are not empowering them to make choices for themselves, you will have impeded their recovery."


"We are actually experts of ourselves."


"Having the question is so much more valuable than having the answers all the time. Answers are just easy ways to shorten the lifespan of the inquiry."


Dec 2, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

145: Before You Open a Yoga Studio with Shannon Crow



Have you always dreamed of opening your own yoga studio? Or are you tired of never being able to set your schedule exactly how you want it, and think that opening your own studio would solve those challenges? Perhaps, you’ve already made up your mind to open a yoga studio and are looking for guidance on how to go about it. Shannon Crow dives into all these and more, on this episode.


Having managed multiple yoga studios in the past, and been approached by two yoga studios to purchase a yoga studio, Shannon has no stranger to the topic of opening, running and managing a yoga studio. She has used a 3-stage process to ask herself if this path is right for her, and on this episode, shares exactly how you can walk through the process too.


This episode is meant for anyone who has dreamed of opening a yoga studio or anyone who is currently "living the dream" of running a yoga studio. Touching on everything related to opening a yoga studio from what your dream of an ideal yoga studio looks like, to the various models of yoga studios that you can consider, to the questions you should be asking yourself, this episode is a great place to start if being a yoga studio owner is on your bucket list.


Key Takeaways:

[2:05] This episode is all about opening a yoga studio.

[2:35] If your dream is to open a yoga studio, start by defining what that looks like.

[3:41] Another way to approach this is to ask yourself what are the things that are really bugging you about your current situation.

[5:09] Check out the hot tip of the week from Schedulicity.

[6:55] Shannon shares some ideas for yoga studios and invites you to think outside the box!

[11:48] Shannon does a quick recap, and reveals a little bit of her background with yoga studios before diving into some tough questions.

[14:41] Do you like the administrative side of running a yoga business?

[16:44] Do you love managing people?

[20:32] Do you love competition and collaboration?

[22:27] Do you love being responsible for a whole group of people?

[24:55] How much do you love thinking about the smallest details?

[27:02] Your yoga teachers are your brand, but the entire yoga studio also has a brand.

[28:28] Having a yoga studio means that you're tied to a place. Are you ready for that?

[29:57] As a yoga studio owner, you have to take into account legal and insurance considerations.

[32:45] The last consideration Shannon would like to highlight is around schedule.

[34:51] How does listening to this episode make you feel about opening a yoga studio?

[37:48] Share your thoughts with Shannon!



Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity and Pelvic Health Professionals


Quotes from this episode:

"If your dream is to open a yoga studio, let's first define what does that look like."


"At the beginning, we opened with that dreaming part, and now, I want to hit home some reality pieces that come in when managing a yoga studio, when owning a yoga studio, when running a yoga studio."


"When we have responsibilities, we have to set those healthy boundaries."


"With a yoga studio, you are tied to a location."


Nov 25, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 144: Get More Website Visitors with SEO with Meg Casebolt




These days, it has become a necessity for any business, including yoga businesses, to have a website. However, it's not enough to just have a website. We need to make sure that our websites get found by people who are looking for what we offer, and that’s where SEO comes in. It sounds scary and intimidating, but is so critical to getting more visitors to your website, and Meg Casebolt breaks down just how you can get started with making your website more SEO-friendly.


Meg Casebolt is an SEO strategist, Google Ads consultant, and (currently inactive) certified yoga teacher. She came to yoga in 2001 as an exercise routine, and has been practicing ever since. After receiving her certification in Bhakti Yoga, she taught yoga for 2 years from 2014 to 2016, before transitioning into her current role, so she has a unique and intimate understanding of yoga businesses. Meg describes herself as the “Supergirl to your SEO strategy stress”, and since 2013, has been helping business owners show up in search results, get more leads & sell more products with intentional, strategic content.


It's important to start with the basics, so Meg explains what SEO is, and why optimizing your website for search engines is so important. She shares how to set up your website to help you get found on Google (both as an industry expert and a local teacher), as well as why Google Analytics and Google Search Console can be such powerful tools. Meg also has some insight into specializing and niching down, and how that can help your website rank in Google.


If you are looking for some great advice on steps you can take immediately to update your website and make it Google-friendly, this is the episode for you.


Key Takeaways:

[5:36] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Meg Casebolt.

[7:20] Who is Meg and what is the work that she does?

[8:15] When did Meg become an SEO specialist?

[12:37] What do yoga teachers need to do to help their websites get found? Set up a Google My Business profile!

[17:03] Another thing you can do to stand out is to get reviews!

[19:05] Meg explains why it is so beneficial to have a Google My Business account, regardless of whether you have a physical location or not.

[22:36] The next thing to look at is your website. Meg recommends Google Analytics and some other handy tools to help you get started.

[25:36] What is the difference between Google Analytics and Google Search Console and what kind of information goes Google Search Console provide?

[29:10] How often should you be checking in on your Google Analytics and Google Search Console?

[30:39] Shannon shares some details about the things that surprised her when Meg did an analysis of The Connected Yoga Teacher website.

[34:18] How can you put out content that is SEO-friendly so that people can find your website?

[37:32] What are some tips for tailoring your content to boost your page ranking in search results?

[42:52] It is important for you to list the location of where you are teaching yoga on your website!

[44:33] What are some things that Meg has noticed about how yoga teachers can improve their SEO?

[46:23] Tip: You have to be found for one thing, before you can be found for everything.

[48:17] Start small and work on these aspects that Meg has covered before diving in more to avoid overwhelm!

[52:56] Meg and Shannon discuss outsourcing SEO to a professional.

[55:35] Get in touch with Meg via her website or Instagram.

[56:10] What is the action step that you are going to take to improve your SEO?




Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicity and Yoga for Pelvic Health Teacher Training


Quotes from this episode:


"How do you make sure that the traffic that is coming to you is converting into a subscriber, or a sale, or in your case, a student?"


"I'm going to start again with looking at what's working. That's always what I do first."


"One big component of Search Engine Optimization that Google's really concerned about is making sure that your website runs smoothly, that it's mobile responsive."


"Google looks at your site on a phone before it looks at it on a desktop."


"The first thing that you need to do is know what people are searching for."


"The best place to start for SEO content is with keyword research."


"When it comes to writing for search, I want you to focus on being clear, and not on being clever."


"Let your geography be your superpower!"


"Nobody goes out of their way to write reviews unless they're mad at you."


"We're really quick to complain, and we're not so great to share praise, but when you ask for the review, people will give it to you."


Nov 18, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 143: Should I Start a Non-Profit? with Jessica Kinsey



In your journey of starting your yoga business, you may have asked yourself, “Should I start a nonprofit or for-profit?” There are certain differences between running a yoga non-profit and a yoga business for-profit, and certain things to consider that can help you decide which would be a better fit for your aims and goals. Jessica Kinsey is an expert in the area of nonprofits and social enterprises, and has some insights to share.


Jessica Kinsey is the Founder, CEO and Social Impact Strategist at Prodigy & Co, a company dedicated to helping impact-driven organizations create business strategies that will help them achieve their mission. A serial entrepreneur who has founded multiple companies, Jessica now partners with non-profit and for-profit organizations to help them develop their services, expand their reach, scale their impact, and build sustainable revenue streams. 


Some yoga teachers want to start a nonprofit because they don't want to take people's money or market themselves. Jessica explains why sales and marketing are still essential parts of a non-profit organization, and some of the key differences you need to consider in structuring your yoga organization. She also shares ideas on how to get more donations, and ways to make the biggest positive impact on your community, whether you have a for-profit business or non-profit organization.


This episode is a great listen for anyone who is interested in starting a non-profit yoga organization, or if you’re just looking for ideas on how to better serve your community while running a sustainable business.


Key Takeaways:

[5:03] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Jessica Kinsey.

[7:12] What does Jessica do?

[8:34] Jessica also works with for-profits to help them figure out how to build social good into what they're doing.

[12:29] Jessica and Shannon discuss the situation of yoga teachers wanting to start a nonprofit because they don't want to take people's money or market themselves.

[15:55] What are the benefits of having a nonprofit?

[18:54] Nonprofits need to have a board of directors who do have a significant say in the decisions concerning the organization.

[21:21] Jessica raises a few more considerations when it comes to starting a nonprofit.

[22:53] What are some of the questions Jessica would ask a yoga teacher who is interested in starting a nonprofit?

[26:23] Shannon and Jessica work through a specific example from Shannon's experience about helping others in need.

[31:12] Two things to keep in mind: 1) The money needs to come from somewhere, 2) The person / organization providing the money is often thinking 'what's in it for me?'.

[34:59] What are some questions yoga teachers or yoga studios should ask themselves if they're thinking of starting a nonprofit?

[37:51] What are some of Jessica's suggestions for yoga teachers who have a for-profit business and want to give back to the community?

[43:13] How does Jessica recommend that yoga teachers maintain a balance between sustaining their business and themselves vs. giving back to society?

[46:46] Get in touch with Jessica via her website, social media or email to find out more about her work.

[48:55] Shannon shares her key takeaways and would love to hear yours!




Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity and Yoga for Pelvic Health Teacher Training


Quotes from this episode:


"I believe that people who are doing good in the world deserve to do well, and that more money means that you get to do more good."


"More often than not, you're asking somebody to give money for something that just makes them feel good, and they're not really getting tangible value out of it."


"You're still selling something or asking for money, it's just in a different kind of way."


"You still have to get the word out about what you're doing, whether or not your class is free."


"Not everything that is putting social good out into the world is 100% sustainable on its own."


"You've got to take care of yourself first and you have to be able to pay your bills and make a living, otherwise you can't do this work at all."

Nov 11, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 142: Living the Sutras with Kelly DiNardo



The Yoga Sutras are an essential framework in yoga, but the reality is that it can be difficult to incorporate the sutras into our teachings, our own practice of yoga, or even into our own lives. Kelly DiNardo has some practical strategies to help us apply the teachings of the sutras to our modern lives.


Kelly DiNardo is the owner of Past Tense Yoga Studio opened in 2009, host of the Living It Podcast, which focuses on the realities of living your yoga practice, author of several books, and freelance journalist who contributes to various popular publications. Her most recent book, co-authored with Amy Pearce-Hayden, Living the Sutras: A Guide to Yoga Wisdom beyond the Mat aims to make the other aspects of yoga as approachable and accessible as the asana is today. 


To many of us, the sutras can seem intimidating and inaccessible, but Kelly’s book presents them in a way that is engaging and easy to understand. Kelly shares what sparked her interest in the sutrats, and her inspiration to write the book. She also provides some insights into how best to translate the ancient wisdom found in the sutras into something accessible and relevant to today’s world, and how to cultivate the mindsets, habits and practices needed to live a joyful and purposeful life.


If you’ve ever wondered how to bring more of yoga philosophy into your life, or wanted a more practical application of the sutras, this episode is a great starting point.


Key Takeaways:

[5:38] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Kelly DiNardo

[6:39] Kelly has been a yoga studio owner for 10 years! What got her into yoga in the first place?

[8:12] When did Kelly's interest in the sutras develop?

[9:43] Kelly shares more about her inspiration and experience with writing Living the Sutras: A Guide to Yoga Wisdom beyond the Mat.

[10:47] Shannon and Kelly discuss how her book is presented in a way that makes the sutras easy to understand.

[12:18] What are the sutras?

[15:04] Yoga is a work in, not just a workout. What has Kelly's experience been in people not wanting to work on themselves?

[18:00] Kelly's book is divided into three books. She explains the different sections and what they represent.

[21:20] Kelly shares the insight that you can work all of the practices of the eight limbs at the same time.

[23:22] What does Kelly mean when she says "everything is yoga"?

[26:44] What message is Kelly trying to convey to yoga teachers and yoga practitioners?

[28:15] Kelly has a list of resources that she has included in her book.

[28:50] What are Kelly's thoughts on the Sanskrit?

[32:12] Shannon and Kelly discuss why it is okay to admit when you don't know or struggle with things.

[33:10] Kelly talks about some of her experiences in the process of writing the book.

[34:54] How have the sutras informed how Kelly runs her yoga studio and her yoga business?

[38:41] What are some tips and tricks Kelly would share with yoga teachers who are thinking about opening a yoga studio?

[42:06] Kelly shares some insight for people who are struggling with marketing and selling in their yoga business because it feels against all the yoga principles.

[46:04] Kelly is doing a card deck as a supplement to the book.

[47:13] What kind of feedback has Kelly received on her book?

[49:54] What is Kelly's advice for people who want to write and publish articles?

[52:36] Get in touch with Kelly via her website, check out her podcast and connect with her on social media. 

[53:38] How are you living your yoga? Shannon would love to hear from you!



Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicity and Yoga for Pelvic Health Teacher Training.


Quotes from this episode:


"If we're living our practice off the mat, then yoga is everywhere for us."


"Yoga is both the goal, the means and the end."


"One of those limbs is our asana, or physical practice, but what I find really interesting is that it's actually less than 2% of the yoga sutras."


"What happens on the mat is a reflection of what's happening off the mat."


"There is an opportunity for yoga or a yoga mindset in every moment."


"You can do yoga and never do asana. Or you could do asana and never do yoga."


"I think understanding the language is an opportunity to go deeper into the practice."


"So few of us think about our breath until there's something wrong with it."


"I think it's important to have a business / professional mindset if you're going to run a studio and I don't think there's any shame in that."


"You physically cannot do what you do if you are not making an actual living."

Nov 4, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 141: Let's Talk Money with Katie Brauer



Part of being an entrepreneur and business owner is dealing with our money mindset. Money is an essential part of our business, and whether you love it or you hate it, you need to embrace it and cultivate that relationship. Even after years of being in business,  our mindset work around money never really ends. Katie Brauer has some insights on the topic.


Katie Brauer is an international yoga educator, high performance coach, former professional snowboarder, and mentor at the intersection of yoga and entrepreneurship. She has been described as a “power house yogi and rising leader” by Forbes, and is the creator of The Yoga Professional Incubator® , an online business and personal growth incubator for yoga teachers. Today, Katie helps people transform their businesses, their relationships and their lives through coaching, group programs and retreats.


How do we even begin to open up the money conversation? It’s a topic that many people find uncomfortable, not just yoga teachers, and Katie shares some of the blocks that we have around money mindset. She explains how a money buddy can be helpful to unpacking your relationship with money, and what it means to be in relationship with our money. Katie has some unique perspectives about the flow of money, and share tips for something we all struggle with - raising our rates, and doing it even when it feels scary.


This is such an important topic for all of us to think about. If you’ve ever hesitated to raise your rates, or felt uncomfortable with your relationship with money, this episode is a great starting point to change that. 


Key Takeaways:

[5:50] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Katie Brauer

[6:54] Where did Katie's yoga journey begin?

[7:43] What shifted in Katie's mind that made her become a yoga teacher?

[9:46] How did Katie start to dig into becoming comfortable with talking about money as a yoga teacher and a consultant for yoga teachers?

[12:13] What are some of the hurdles that yoga teachers face around their money mindset?

[14:04] Who should we choose to be our money buddy? Katie shares more about who we should pick, and how to approach looking at our relationship with money.

[17:49] What are some of the strategies that have produced the biggest shift in Katie's relationship with money?

[20:54] How does Katie approach looking for the flow of money in her life?

[23:01] Katie segues into talking about how yoga teachers can use this method to find the right pricing for them.

[26:41] Yoga teachers often lean towards undercharging. What are Katie's tips for addressing that?

[30:03] Shannon shares an anecdote of what happened when she decided to try raising her rates for a course she offers.

[33:41] Yoga teachers often say they feel bad that they're making yoga inaccessible to those who can't afford it by raising their rates. What is Katie's response to that?

[41:20] What are some other practices Katie recommends to shift your mindset around money?

[45:43] Opening up the conversation and listening to what others have to say on the topic of money can be just as important.

[48:55] Being spiritual and having money are not at odds with each other.

[52:40] It is a myth that yoga teachers cannot make money.

[54:21] Get in touch with Katie via her website, and leaves us with a challenge - what's the one thing you could do today to enhance your life and business? 

[56:18] Katie shares a unique location to teach yoga.

[1:01:08] Shannon shares her biggest takeaways from this interview, and would love to hear your thoughts too!




Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity and Mama Nurture.


Quotes from this episode:

"I think the first thing is a willingness to talk about it, because it's just so uncomfortable for the majority of people on the planet, not just yoga teachers."

"There's so much shame that goes along with money, and it doesn't have to be."

"You're in a relationship with your money."

"I find when I just get quiet, the answer is there."

"There's people on my list, and your list, and for yoga teachers listening, in your orbit that are just waiting for the right thing that speaks to them."

"I think that is a total myth, that people can't be spiritual and have money."

Oct 28, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 140: Plan Your Yoga Workshop with Shannon Crow



So you want to plan a workshop, but where do you begin? Before you get into the nitty gritty details of what yoga poses you are going to be teaching, or what music you will be playing, or when you’ll be taking a break, there are some things to think about.


Based on the questions yoga teachers have asked Shannon, both privately and in The Connected Yoga Teacher Facebook Group, this is something a lot of people need help with. In this episode, Shannon shares her 7 key things to think about when it comes to planning a workshop.


From figuring out your target audience, tips on marketing, strategies for how to brainstorm main topics for your workshop, Shannon shares her process of how she approaches creating and planning a workshop. She even tackles some mindset blocks you may have when it comes to pricing your workshop appropriately!


If you have never planned a workshop before or you want to hear about the framework that Shannon loves to use for workshops, this is the episode you need to listen to.


Key Takeaways:

[:57] This episode is all about planning a workshop.

[4:36] The first thing you need to decide is The One Thing. What is the one thing you would like your attendees to walk away with?

[9:01] The second thing to consider is who the workshop is for. Don't be afraid to niche down on this!

[12:46] When would you like to do this workshop? Remember - you need to give yourself enough time to plan and market it!

[15:43] Shannon explains how reverse engineering your time can help with the planning stage.

[19:01] Shannon has some tips on marketing your workshop and getting the word out.

[20:49] The next step is to think about pricing.

[25:12] Shannon shares a personal example on getting clarity on your pricing.

[30:07] Time for the "sticky note plan" for the main topics! Shannon breaks down what this means.

[33:42] Next, comes naming and marketing your workshop.

[35:47] Shannon uses more sticky notes for this part of the process - figuring out the attendance.

[37:12] Shannon wants to hear about the workshops you are offering in your community or thinking about offering.



Episodes on Money and Pricing:

Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicity and MamaNurture


Quotes from this episode:


"What is the one thing you would like your attendees to walk away with?"


"What I'd love for you to offer to people who attend your workshop is that they walk away feeling like they have something tangible."


"Don't be afraid to niche down!"


"The important piece that a lot of yoga teachers will miss is ... the piece about telling people about your workshop."


"Oftentimes, the value of what we're offering is way beyond what we're charging."


"Clarity is better than being clever, especially when it comes to names."

Oct 21, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 139: Grow Your Yoga Business via Email with Tarzan Kay



What do emails have to do with increasing your income as a yoga teacher? With the right strategy, it can be an amazing tool to connect with your yoga students in your community or online, increase your number of clients, or promote a launch of a new offering. Tarzan Kay shares her expert insight on just how you can do this.


Tarzan Kay is a launch strategist and copywriter who has gone years of hustling for clients at $35/hour, to a rock star client list and a $1,500 hourly rate. She works with clients such as Amy Porterfield, Jasmine Star and Marie Forleo, and was featured in Forbes Magazine. She focuses on helping people make money doing what they love by writing powerful email and website copy that converts readers into clients.


Email can be a powerful marketing tool if you know how to harness it. Tarzan shares how to write emails that don’t feel salesy, how long your emails should be, how often you should be sending emails, and whether you should just hire someone else to write all of your copy.


Whether you’ve already been using emails to reach new students or this is the first time you’re thinking about how to grow your yoga business via email, there are some great tips in this interview.


Key Takeaways:

[5:17] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Tarzan Kay.

[6:56] How did Tarzan become a launch strategist? She explains the work that she does and who she does it for.

[10:56] What are some of Tarzan's tips for raising your rates?

[15:13] Tarzan raised her rates from $35/ hour to $1,500/ hour. She reveals some of the packages she offers clients and how it might apply to yoga teachers.

[23:21] Why is it important for yoga teachers to be emailing their students?

[26:28] How should yoga teachers be writing emails so that they don't feel salesy?

[29:10] What are some resources Tarzan recommends to break through the mental block of not wanting to sell?

[30:22] How often should people be emailing their list?

[33:50] One email, one job - Tarzan explains how this applies to your emails.

[36:48] Tarzan explains what inspired her to create her Legendary event.

[38:56] One of the things yoga teachers say holds them back from writing emails is that they're not feeling creative. Tarzan has a response to that.

[40:36] How long should an email be?

[42:11] Should you hire someone to write your copy for you?

[44:11] What is your brand voice and how do you develop that?

[47:00] What are some of Tarzan's tips for bringing in new clients through email?

[49:33] Tarzan doesn't create free content all the time. She explains how her strategy works.

[57:47] What is Tarzan's recommendation for building up to a launch?

[1:00:46] Tarzan has some final bits of advice around sending emails.

[1:02:10] Find out more about Tarzan at her website and check out her free quiz too.

[1:03:44] Shannon shares her key takeaways from this episode. What were yours?



Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicity and MamaNurture


Quotes from this episode:


"When someone's not paying you very much, they aren't that invested in showing up and doing the work."


"You're really selling yourself short if you think as a yoga teacher, all you have to offer is guiding people through a series of poses."


"You have to create the vision for them, when you're selling a package."


"What's more important is creating a package and a vision for people that you can put a healthy price tag on."


"Email is where you can develop your know-like-and-trust factor if you just show up there more consistently."


"I don't think that your business can grow beyond yourself. You have to work on your own personal expansion in tandem with the expansion of your business."


"You really need to take the time to figure out your own voice."


"The important thing is that you write [emails] and you send them and what you think is not good, someone else might think is the greatest thing they've ever read."

Oct 14, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 138: Accessible Yoga Beyond Asana with Jivana Heyman



What does it mean to make yoga accessible to everyone? Yoga goes beyond just asana, so what does it really mean? Jivana Heyman is one of the frontrunners of changing the thinking around yoga, and making the whole of yoga accessible to everyone.


Jivana Heyman is the Founder and Director of Accessible Yoga, an international non-profit organization dedicated to increasing access to yoga teachings through education, training and advocacy with the mission of shifting the public perception of yoga. Over ten years ago, he coined the term “accessible yoga”, and since then, it has gained traction and is impacting the larger yoga world. As a yoga teacher, Jivana has specialized in teaching yoga to people with disabilities with an emphasis on community building and social engagement and has led countless yoga teacher training programs around the world over the past 25 years.


At its core, Accessible Yoga is about highlighting the amazing work people are doing and creating new connections and community. Jivana shares more about how we can make yoga more accessible, on the level of individual classes, trainings, and in yoga culture in general. He also reveals some of the content of his new book Accessible Yoga: Poses and Practices for Every Body, to be released in November 2019. Jivana also reveals why collaboration and creativity are an important part of making yoga accessible to all.


This is such an important topic for all yoga teachers who want to share yoga with everybody, and this episode will inspire you to see making yoga accessible to all in a new light.


Key Takeaways:

[5:19] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Jivana Heyman.

[7:13] What does Jivana do and who does he do it for?

[8:52] What are some aspects in which Jivana sees that yoga is not accessible to all people?

[11:21] Accessible Yoga is about highlighting the amazing work people are doing and creating new connections and community.

[13:00] Jivana shares his personal experience of how yoga impacted him in a way that saved his life.

[15:48] Jivana has a new book coming out in November 2019. He talks about the inspiration for the book and what it covers.

[20:37] At the heart of Jivana's work is making the whole of yoga, beyond just asana, accessible to everyone. He gives an example of this.

[22:29] How does Jivana illustrate and make the rest of the 8 limbs (apart from asana) accessible in his book?

[24:29] What are some of the messages Jivana is trying to get through to yoga teachers?

[27:35] Two main aspects Jivana focuses on during his trainings for teachers are creativity and collaboration. He explains how creativity factors to teaching yoga.

[33:15] How does collaboration factor into making yoga more accessible?

[40:37] How long has Jivana been doing his work with the Accessible Yoga organization?

[42:31] Jivana speaks about his vision for Accessible Yoga and how that has revealed itself to him over time.

[45:10] What is the yoga world, and what is its relationship to the rest of the world?

[46:09] Jivana has recently changed his social media strategy. He explains what prompted this change.

[49:52] Accessibility often starts with finances. Why does Jivana believe that?

[53:07] What were some things that came up as Jivana was writing his book? Shannon and Jivana discuss the ego.

[1:03:27] Jivana shares some of his final pieces of advice.

[1:04:35] Get in touch with Jivana via his website, and be sure to follow him on social media.

[1:05:42] What does accessible yoga mean to you?

[1:07:36] Shannon gives us a sneak preview of what's coming up next week on the podcast!




Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity and MamaNurture


Quotes from this episode:


"The work of Accessible Yoga is to highlight the incredible work that's out there, not really creating something new."


"That's a big piece of our work too, really trying to create new connections and community where there really hasn't been one."


"At the heart of my work is not really asana, but actually the whole of yoga and really thinking differently."


"I think that people are doing the best they can with what they have, and I appreciate that."


"You can learn to paint by copying great masters, that's an amazing way to study. But eventually, to be an artist, you have to paint your own way."


"Doing your practice is the least selfish thing you can do. Taking care of ourselves is the most serviceful thing we can do for the world."


"Accessibility often starts with finances."

Oct 7, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 137: Yoga and Brain Injuries with Ann Green



Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is a condition that is far more prevalent than we might think. An estimated 69 million people worldwide suffer from Traumatic Brain Injuries each year, and the thing is, it’s often not possible to tell just by looking at a person if they have experienced TBI. Ann Green joins me to share how we as yoga teachers can learn a few things to help people on the road to recovery.

Ann Green is a yogi, a runner, and a surfer with over 30 years of teaching yoga, and almost fifteen conducting yoga teacher training. She has a background in sport psychology and physical education, and a Masters in Exercise Science from the University of Toronto. Ann is skilled in Coaching, Wellness Coaching, Pain Management and Prevention, Yoga, and Fitness Training.

Over the years, Ann has had her own experiences with concussions and brain injury. In her line of work, she has also come across many individuals who have experienced TBI, and this has inspired her to shift her focus to offer yoga that caters specifically to the needs of those coping with brain injuries. Ann shares her own journey living as a person with brain injury, and how this has informed her practice and her work in this space. She has some tips on what we can do in a yoga class, or with breath and movement to assist someone on the road to recovery with a brain injury, as well how empowering it can be just to understand what someone with this condition may be going through.

Whether you have experience working with students with brain injury, or this is something you have never even considered, this episode is sure to be informative for all yoga teachers.

Key Takeaways:

[5:36] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Ann Green.

[7:30] When did Ann start to tie in yoga and brain health?

[12:38] Ann shares her personal experience with concussions and brain injury.

[19:17] What are some symptoms that might come up for someone with brain injury?

[25:26] Ann highlights some of the reasons she believes the concussion rates are highest for women between 45 and 55 years of age.

[26:42] Ann has learned and grown from her experience with brain injury, and has framed her experiences in a different light.

[29:02] What does Ann do in her classes with her students dealing with brain injury?

[32:16] Ann has created a program called Brainstorm, for people with concussions or who work with people with brain injuries to connect in community and find their calm.

[40:54] Ann shares some key aspects of the Building a Blissful Brain classes.

[46:40] Shannon and Ann discuss working with people with concussions and how you may need to help them push a little further in their recovery process.

[48:27] What are some language cues that can be helpful (or unhelpful) when working with someone with a concussion or brain injury?

[50:46] Talking about neuroplasticity, what are some movements that can be useful to integrate into the class?

[1:00:53] Ann has some final recommendations for yoga teachers working with students with brain injuries for the first time.

[1:03:02] Shannon shares some of her biggest takeaways from this interview with Ann.




Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity and Mama Nurture


Quotes from this episode:


"You can't do movement without the awesome, excellence of communication with your brain."


"The only reason that people don't get so incredibly worried about [concussions] is, most people don't die of a concussion."


"The numbers show from the States and from Canada, that we are beyond epidemic levels of concussion, minor brain injury level."


"Your mess becomes your message."


"I want people to realize something that's not recognizable and it is invisible, we need to make it recognizable."


"Let tenderness be your teacher.

Sep 30, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

 Ep 136: Yoga for Teens & Tweens with Karen Pascoe



Tweens and teengagers can be a difficult audience to reach. They are changing physically, mentally, and emotionally, and that comes with a whole different set of challenges. Dr. Karen Pascoe has found her niche in catering to this specific age group and on this episode, shares some of her strategies and tips for teaching yoga to younger students.


Dr. Karen Pascoe is a Licensed Psychologist, Certified Personal Trainer, Certified Therapeutic Yoga Teacher, and an Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher (E-RYT 200) with Yoga Alliance. She began teaching yoga in 1996, and in 2015, launched the Mind Body Life Transformation Center. Apart from yoga classes, therapy and wellness sessions, she offers classes, parties and summer camps specially targeted at tweens and teens.


How is teaching tweens and teens different from teaching adults? What are some of the challenges you might encounter in reaching this age group? Why is communication and connection so important when structuring these classes? Karen shares her insights on these topics, as well as the business side of marketing and promoting yoga for tweens and teens. 


If you teach tweens and teens, or are interested in niching down to this age group, or if you just have teens of your own and would like some tools to share with them, this episode is just what you need to listen to.


Key Takeaways:

[6:08] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Dr. Karen Pascoe.

[7:27] What is Karen's yoga journey and how did it bring her to where she is now?

[10:05] What is the biggest difference between an adult yoga class and a class for teens and tweens?

[11:52] What age group is tweens and what age group is teens?

[13:06] How do teen and tween students differ?

[14:57] What motivates younger students to participate in yoga classes?

[15:56] How does Karen deal with students who come in as a result of being signed up by their parents and who are unmotivated?

[17:24] What do Karen's tween classes look like vs teen classes? She walks us through the structure of her classes.

[22:39] Karen incorporates pauses into her classes for younger students. She explains how that works.

[24:45] Shannon and Karen discuss why making yoga an empowering practice is so important for this age group.

[27:23] What are some tools that Karen teaches her students to help them with emotional regulation?

[31:39] In her work as a psychologist, Karen works with tweens and older. She shares more about her work in that area.

[34:35] What are some of Karen's tips for yoga teachers who have never taught a tween or teen class?

[38:23] Karen explains more about what it takes to be "cool" with tweens and teens.

[41:40] What is the most effective strategy to get the word out about tween and teen yoga classes?

[43:42] What does Karen's tween and teen camp look like?

[45:53] Karen shares some resources for yoga teachers interested in teaching teens.

[48:30] Connect with Karen via her website or Facebook to find out more about her work and trainings.

[49:04] Karen leaves us with an anecdote of how impactful teen yoga can be.

[51:08] Shannon would love to hear your feedback!


Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicity and MamaNurture.


Quotes from this episode:


"In the tween and teen classes, you have to have these pauses to engage and re-engage, because they don't have the attention span for that. It needs to be more of a community-oriented experience."


"One of my goals for that age is empowerment."


"After the inversions, because those are the single most calming pose that you can do ... it will be silence."


"I want so much of the yoga to be strategy, for it to be empowering."


"If they are not being taught strategy and skill for emotional regulation, they feel very vulnerable."


"Depression, anxiety, no matter what they're coming in for, it's in their body as much as their mind."


Sep 23, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

 Ep 135: How to Modify for the Prenatal Student with Rena Wren



When teaching prenatal yoga, or pregnant students, what are the poses you should avoid? Can you teach twists, inversions or front extensions? What are some modifications I can cue, or props I can use to cater to the needs of my pregnant students? All your questions are going to be answered on this episode with Rena Wren.


Rena Wren is one of our MamaNurture lead trainers, and the founder of Empowered Yoga Teaching, where she provides continuing education and support for yoga teachers.  Apart from prenatal yoga teacher training through MamaNurture, she offers yin yoga training, and yoga teacher mentoring on a wide range of topics, as well as workshops, retreats, and online courses. 


Contraindicated yoga during pregnancy covers eight main areas. Shannon and Rena dive into each of these, as well as modifications and variations that you can cue for your pregnant students and in your prenatal class. Be sure to check out the free PDF Download and Rena’s videos where she shares variations you can use.


If you have ever taught prenatal yoga, or had a pregnant student come to your class, this episode is going to be a real treat. It is full of tips and modifications that you can immediately start applying to any of your prenatal classes or to work with pregnant students.


Key Takeaways:

[5:38] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Rena Wren.

[8:04] How did Rena get started in her yoga journey?

[12:35] Rena juggles multiple roles and responsibilities. She shares how yoga has helped her find balance in what she does.

[15:09] Check out the PDF download for the 8 contraindicated poses during pregnancy.

[16:03] Shannon and Rena discuss the first contraindicated pose - Breath retention and/or strong, forced breathing. What are some of Rena's favorite modifications for this?

[17:47] Advanced poses that challenge and build heat are second on the list. How can you tell when certain poses are advanced?

[22:31] What are some modifications Rena recommends to avoid poses that engage and/or stretch the rectus abdominis muscles (e.g. boat, crow, leg lifts)?

[27:18] Front extensions can overstretch the abdominal muscles. Rena walks us through a modification of camel pose for the pregnant body.

[30:11] Inversions are contraindicated for pregnancy. How would Rena modify the headstand, handstand, shoulder stand and downward dog poses?

[36:46] What are some of Rena's favorite variations for prone poses?

[40:05] How can you identify closed twist poses and what are some modifications you can offer?

[44:54] The last one is hot yoga. Shannon and Rena discuss why they would not teach hot yoga to pregnant people.

[47:15] Check out the live video from September 16 to find out more about caution poses in the grey area.

[47:48] Rena has some final insights on how teachers can approach having a pregnant student in their class.

[49:39] Rena has a MamaNurture training coming up!

[52:05] Shannon shares some details about upcoming teacher trainings that are available.

[53:12] Shannon has an update about MamaNurture and all the work she is doing with niching down.



Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicity and MamaNurture.


Quotes from this episode:


"One of the main things I've learned from yoga is to know the things that I value, and to make sure that I have enough of those things in my life to help me have balance."

"A lot of students who come to prenatal yoga are new to yoga."


"Challenging is dependent on the student."


"Getting people to slow down and feel nurtured in a space really helps them realize that they don't really care about their idea of yoga was anymore. They care that they feel good when they leave this room."


"One of the first things to do [think about] what are the benefits, what are we trying to do?"


"Take baby with you in the twist."


Sep 16, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 134: Pelvic Health for Pregnancy & Beyond with Julie Wiebe



What is the recovery time after birth for prenatal yoga students? What are some things to consider in the recovery of postnatal students looking to get back to full strength and fitness? There are a lot of myths around pelvic and abdominal health during pregnancy and postpartum, which Julie Wiebe busts through on this episode.

Julie Wiebe is a Physical Therapist (PT) with over twenty years of clinical experience in both Sports Medicine and Women’s Health. She is also an educator and women’s health advocate working to create awareness of pregnancy recovery, postpartum and pelvic and abdominal health issues in fitness.

Pregnancy and birth is a period during which the body changes and adapts to accommodate the growing baby, and post-birth, there is a period of rehabilitation that is necessary for the body to return to its regular function. Julie shares some of the misconceptions around post-birth recovery, hyperlordosis, urinary incontinence, Kegels and much more. She also highlights some breath techniques and poses yoga teachers can use to help their students regulate intra-abdominal pressure, and the importance of teaching from a place of educated hope instead of educated fear.

This episode is meant for any yoga practitioner or teacher who has been pregnant, who plans to be pregnant, or who really wants to help the pregnant and postnatal yoga student - Julie’s insights on this topic are really eye-opening!

Key Takeaways:

[7:45] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Julie Wiebe.

[9:07] What does Julie do and who does she do it for?

[10:21] Why is there a rehabilitation period after pregnancy and giving birth?

[12:43] Julie recommends for people to come to her prenatally and postnatally.

[15:10] Julie shares some statistics around how paid maternity leave affects infant and parental health.

[19:16] What are some things that Julie would want prenatal yoga teachers and students to know about the changes in the body?

[21:59] How can we teach people to breathe optimally?

[27:01] What pose does Julie recommend to get into the closure of the rib cage?

[29:45] During pregnancy, there is a lot more weight on the front of the body. How does that affect alignment, and the lumbar curve? Julie busts some myths around anterior pelvic tilt in pregnancy.

[34:16] Where does Julie start to help people find alignment?

[37:24] What does it mean to strengthen the diaphragm?

[41:09] Julie and Shannon discuss the condition of incontinence, specifically leaking urine.

[45:20] Kegels is not always the answer! Julie addresses this myth that Kegels is always a good exercise after birth.

[48:45] What else can yoga teachers be doing to help their students in terms of movement, breath or information?

[53:28] Why is it important to be having conversations around pelvic health, pregnancy and postpartum rehabilitation and recovery?

[58:36] Get in touch with Julie and check out the wealth of resources, articles and videos she has available on her website.

[59:40] Shannon shares some of her key takeaways.




Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity and Mama Nurture


Quotes from this episode:


"There are changes that come because of the pregnancy...what my job is, is to help you rebalance those changes and get you back to function and fitness without any limitations."


"What would we see down the line with pelvic health knowing that women had an opportunity just to recover?"


"If I could do anything for anyone, if I could do one thing, it would be to optimize their breathing."


"Form or alignment, for me, has a lot to do with access to muscles."


"We need to start looking at individuals and understand their needs, and that's tricky."

Sep 9, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 133: Yoga for Painful Sex with Casie Danenhauer



How is the health of your pelvic floor is related to sexual dysfunction and painful sex? This is a topic that many of us find uncomfortable to talk about, but that a lot of us, particularly women, struggle with. Dr. Casie Danenhauer, someone who has experienced pelvic pain herself, reveals how she has combined techniques from physical therapy and yoga to create a holistic approach to healing.


Dr. Casie Danenhauer is a pelvic floor physical therapist, registered yoga teacher, and Founder of Enlighten Physical Therapy, where she focuses on providing conscious care for pelvic health. After using a combination of yoga techniques and physical therapy to address her own struggles with pelvic pain and painful intercourse, Casie realized that a holistic approach is the most efficient and effective path towards pelvic health. Since then, she has integrated yoga, breathing and meditation exercises into her physical therapy practice to create a unique East-meets-West approach.


By speaking openly about her own experience with pelvic pain, Casie hopes to break some of the stigma and shame that surrounds the topic. She explains more about the pelvic floor, some common symptoms and conditions associated with painful intercourse, and how therapeutic yoga, physical therapy and breathwork can be used in combination to treat these conditions. She also offers advice on how yoga teachers can responsibly talk about and cue the pelvic floor, and be a part of a client’s healing journey.


Whether you have students who are dealing with pelvic pain or painful intercourse, or you just want to be more aware of how yoga and physical therapy can be integrated to address pelvic health conditions, you’re sure to find value in this episode.


Key Takeaways:

[6:30] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Dr. Casie Danenhauer.

[8:10] What does Casie do and how did she get into it? She shares her journey with physical therapy and yoga, and how she came to integrate the two in her practice.

[16:01] Shannon and Casie discuss the language and connotations of using expressions like "pelvic dysfunction".

[16:58] When did Casie start dealing with her own pelvic health conditions?

[21:34] Pelvic health professionals can make a big impact on people and make a difference to people.

[23:02] Casie shares some of the treatments that helped with her pain with sex, and how she moved into becoming a pelvic floor PT.

[25:41] That Casie has shared the personal aspects of her own struggles with her pelvic health condition openly is very powerful.

[27:00] What are some conditions associated with painful sex, and what are the symptoms associated with each?

[29:32] What were some treatment methods Casie engaged in to treat her own pain, and who would she engage to help in her treatment now?

[32:20] What can yoga teachers do to support students who are dealing with painful intercourse?

[39:22] Casie recommends for yoga teachers to reach out to your students PT to find out more about what they are dealing with.

[43:13] How can yoga teachers use the same pose for different purposes? Casie breaks down with the example of cat-cow.

[49:10] What are some cues yoga teachers can give for students who need to build strength in their pelvic floor?

[50:23] Casie shares some key issues to be aware of when addressing a student who is struggling with pelvic pain or painful intercourse.

[51:47] What are some differences in Casie's approach compared to the medical approach?

[55:55] Connect with Casie on Instagram, or check out her website for more information on the work she does.



Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicityand Pelvic Health Professionals


Quotes from this episode:


"There's a million different ways we can prescribe a breathwork, but most of it, honestly, is just giving the patient permission to move in ways and give attention to their body and specifically, their pelvic spaces, when maybe they've never even heard of that as a possibility."


"I was really, really moved by how powerful pelvic floor PT can be in helping people with really basic ‘quality of life’ level issues that we take for granted until something goes wrong."


"That's part of my main mission is to de-stigmatize all of this stuff, and take out the shame."


"That, I feel is the most healing aspect, is just being able to voice what we're experiencing in our body."


"Pain levels decrease with mindfulness."


"The brain and the nervous system is influencing all of the tissues in the body."

Sep 2, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

132: Marketing to Increase Private Bookings with Amanda Mays



How can you market your yoga business without seeming pushy or salesy? What kind of strategies can you use to attract your ideal client? Amanda Mays joins Shannon on this consultation call to talk through her struggles with marketing herself and putting her yoga business out there.

Amanda is self proclaimed yoga and happiness ambassador. She works as a freelance editor and occasionally teaches e-courses on writing, specifically journaling, and how to use that habit to fuel a bigger writing practice. She is also raising six children apart from all this, and has very limited free time. Amanda wants to expand her yoga offering to begin working with private clients, and to become more purposeful in her approach to teaching yoga and marketing her business to the right clients.

Shannon coaches Amanda through her mindset blocks of not wanting to market herself while offering actionable advice on how best to move toward offering more 1:1 private yoga sessions. From tips on how to use social media to promote her yoga business, to goal-setting, Shannon guides Amanda to find clarity in her aims for her business.

If you’re like Amanda and worry that your marketing efforts are too pushy, or feel like you’re being pulled in too many different directions promoting your yoga business, this episode will help you get some clarity around how best to get the word out about your yoga offerings.

P.S. Since this episode was recorded, Amanda has grown her yoga business from zero private clients, to about five 1:1 clients a week!

Key Takeaways:

[5:17] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Amanda Mays.

[7:50] What is Amanda's biggest challenge in her yoga business?

[9:19] What are some of Amanda's top ideas that are calling to her? Shannon suggests doing a free writing practice.

[12:43] What is the one thing that can increase profit and growth in Amanda's business?

[14:22] Why does Amanda want to move towards 1:1 yoga?

[17:14] Shannon goes through an exercise with Amanda to create an ideal week and how to bridge the gap between her current schedule and ideal schedule.

[21:08] Amanda's biggest hurdle is marketing herself. Shannon shares an anecdote from her personal experience running a farmer's market to help her with this mental block.

[24:06] What is something Amanda's ideal student is struggling with?

[27:27] Shannon and Amanda discuss setting measurable goals for her yoga business, and how sharing her story can contribute to making the 'ask'.

[32:25] Shannon highlights why it's important for Amanda's social media to reflect her business and how to leverage that to reach her ideal clients.

[40:21] Shannon shares her tips on doing live video.

[46:35] Shannon and Amanda set some goals for her to start doing live videos!

[48:59] Shannon prompts Amanda to think about how people can book 1:1 sessions with her.

[52:53] How can Amanda figure out her core values as a yoga teacher, and some of her discomforts around marketing herself? Shannon suggests the "I believe" exercise.

[1:00:45] Amanda shares more about her fear of niching down.

[1:03:07] Amanda struggles with how she can incorporate some of her previous e-courses and journaling activities into her offering that all target the same ideal client. Shannon has some suggestions.

[1:10:55] What's your biggest takeaway from this consultation call? Share your comments or questions with Shannon!




Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity and Pelvic Health Professionals


Quotes from this episode:


"This is what I want to do, but I can't quite figure out how to put the steps together." - Amanda

"What if we instead, really focus on who might be your ideal student?" - Shannon

"The thing is with working 1:1, is it takes time to build it. Our best advertising is someone telling someone else how great they feel." - Shannon

"People are excited to invest in the why, why you do something and the whole story behind it." - Shannon

Aug 26, 2019


This episode is all about something Shannon often gets asked - the nitty-gritty details of how to teach private yoga. It can feel intimidating, and you may not know where to start or how to structure a private yoga session with a student. Shannon dives into exactly how she handles her yoga sessions, from scheduling the 1:1 class to after the session ends.

Shannon covers a lot of ground. Starting off with scheduling, pricing, policies around booking, cancellation, payment, and rent, she also touches on waivers, health information and questions to ask to get to know your student better. Find out how Shannon creates a yoga flow on the fly for the person she is teaching, how she approaches space to do yoga, and makes sure to fit in the actual yoga (including Savasana!) within the session. 1:1 yoga is different from group classes, and Shannon explains how to be in discussion with your client while working with them, homework she assigns, and how she manages accountability and follow up.

This episode is jam-packed with lots of information and actionable tips - it was designed to help you dive right into teaching private yoga, if you have been thinking about it and just weren’t sure about the in’s and out’s.


Key Takeaways:

[6:38] This episode is all about the nitty-gritty details of teaching private yoga.

[7:35] When and how can someone schedule a session with you?

[9:40] What is your price? Shannon highlights some elements to consider when setting your price.

[15:12] How does Shannon approach providing mats and props, and the amount of time she allows between appointments.

[19:12] Setting policies and rules is an important part of teaching private yoga. Shannon shares some of her tips around booking, cancellation and payment policies.

[20:48] Rent - how much are you able to pay for rent?

[22:19] The next step is doing the intake after someone books with you. Shannon dives into waivers and health information.

[24:54] A lot of yoga teachers get stuck when it comes to asking their students questions. What are some questions you can ask to find out more about your student?

[29:16] If you are helping a student with a specific symptom or problem, what and how much information do you require ahead of time to help you prepare?

[32:06] Shannon creates the yoga flow for her private students on the fly. She explains how she goes about doing this with some real-life examples.

[35:36] Shannon shares what it means to hold space to do yoga.

[38:31] How can you be in discussion with your student during a 1:1 yoga session?

[40:19] Shannon gives her students homework!

[42:07] The last aspect of teaching private yoga is accountability and follow up.




Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity and Pelvic Health Professionals


Quotes from this episode:


"Imagine your ideal week. When would you ideally teach 1:1 yoga?"


"I don’t want you to negotiate and earn less than your set hourly rate."


"You are ready to teach 1:1 yoga as soon as you graduate from yoga teacher training.”


“Set your price and your policies first. Then set up how people book with you.”

Aug 19, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

130: Make a Profit Teaching Private Yoga with Emily Sussell



Can you make a good living teaching yoga? A lot of us yoga teachers struggle with money mindset - we don’t like to talk about making profits, or think about sharing yoga as a business. However, that’s an important part of being able to bring yoga to others. You need to be able to sustain yourself first, before you can serve others. On this episode, Emily Sussell reveals how she makes $100,000 a year with her yoga business, and how you can too.

Emily is a successful yoga teacher, business coach, and entrepreneur. She became a certified yoga instructor in 2013, and founded Private Yoga Brooklyn, a premium private yoga service in NYC. As other yoga teachers noticed her success and reached out to her for help in creating their own private yoga businesses, Emily was inspired to start Abundant Yogi Coaching, a business coaching institute for yoga teachers worldwide. In addition to coaching and mentorship services, she offers educational resources and coaching retreats to empower yoga teachers with tools to thrive financially and become more impactful as healers.

Finding your niche is a common theme on the podcast. Emily explains how teaching private yoga can be a niche on it own, and how to make the leap from teaching group classes to private yoga. She explains how she found her ideal client avatar, set her prices and marketed herself using branding on her website and SEO. Her biggest piece of advice? Motion over meditation.


If teaching private yoga is something you’ve given even a little bit of thought to, or if you just want to be able to make a decent income as a yoga teacher, this episode is for you.


Key Takeaways:

[6:35] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Emily Sussell.
[8:30] Where did Emily's yoga journey begin and how did she get to where she is today?
[13:56] What was the biggest thing for Emily that allowed her to shift from teaching group yoga to specializing in private yoga?
[15:38] What are some of Emily's tips around starting to specialize in teaching private yoga?
[18:22] Emily shares some advice around just taking the leap and going for it.
[20:42] How does Emily decide on the pricing for her yoga classes? She has a special equation!
[23:10] Emily believes it's possible to make a good income teaching yoga and teaching private yoga. She shares her insights into what that might look like.
[25:29] What are Emily's suggestions for attracting the right kinds of clients who can afford your fees?
[27:47] Shannon and Emily discuss niching down and specializing.
[30:36] How do packages and discounted pricing play into Emily's offerings?
[35:50] At what point did Emily transition from group to private classes?
[38:01] What is the most effective channel for Emily to get in front of her potential clients in terms of marketing and visibility?
[41:33] What does a 1:1 yoga session look like?
[45:38] What's the first step to take if you're looking to move in the direction of teaching private yoga classes?
[48:30] Check out the links for more information on insurance and waiver forms.
[49:18] Find out more about Emily's work via her Facebook group and her coaching website, Abundant Yogi.
[50:29] Shannon shares some of her key takeaways - she'd love to hear yours too!


Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicity and Pelvic Health Professionals

Quotes from this episode:

"I fell in love with everything about working 1:1 with somebody in their home."

"One of the things that helped me make that transition [to specializing in private yoga] was honestly, deciding to."

"I realized that if I didn't choose something and commit to it, then I was just going to stay in this space of vagueness."

"When you're building a business and you're trying to move forward with growing something, don't get stuck in that place of constantly meditating what's the best way to do this."

"When we're creating marketing, we're not trying to appeal to everyone." 

Aug 12, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 129: Pelvic Floor 101 with Marie-Josée Forget



This episode is on one of Shannon’s favorite topics - pelvic health. It is one of the crucial parts of our body that plays many functions in our daily lives, but gets very little attention, until something goes wrong. Marie-Josée Forget, a Pelvic Health Physiotherapist, is here to give us the basics on everything pelvic floor.


Marie-Josée Forget is a Pelvic Health Physiotherapist with 18 years of clinical experience. She currently teaches courses related to pelvic anatomy and health at Pelvic Health Solutions, and has developed a hand-drawn female and male pelvic floor model that is used as a teaching tool. Apart from her work as an instructor and public speaker on the topic of pelvic health, MJ runs a private physiotherapy practice where she treats men, women and children who have pelvic floor dysfunction.


The pelvic floor is a bit of a mystery to most of us. MJ helps us to understand a bit more about the anatomy of the pelvic floor and crucial role that it plays in various daily functions. Despite the common perception that the pelvic floor is weak and needs to be strengthened, MJ reveals that many people actually suffer from the effects of pelvic floor tension, rather than weakness. She also busts some common misconceptions and myths surrounding the pelvic floor


MJ also has some great suggestions on how yoga instructors and pelvic health physiotherapists can work together to better serve your students. Tune in to learn more about this remarkable part of our body, and how this information can help you and your yoga students. 


P.S. MJ Forget is the October guest expert in the Pelvic Health Professionals membership site!


Key Takeaways:

[7:24] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Marie-Josée Forget.

[9:26] What does MJ do and who does she do it for?

[10:14] MJ explains how she created her pelvic floor models.

[13:50] What is the pelvic floor, where is it, and what does it do?

[19:13] Do we guard with the pelvic floor under stress?

[20:16] Despite the importance and role of the pelvic floor in many of our daily activities, it is not a subject area that is often taught or discussed.

[21:30] There may be a perception in society that the pelvic floor is weak, and weakens over time. MJ explains more about the muscle and how weakness or tension may exhibit the same symptoms.

[24:56] MJ shares how yoga instructors can work together with pelvic health physiotherapists.

[28:08] What is it like to have a pelvic health physiotherapist do an internal exam?

[32:30] Shannon shares her experience of her first visit with her pelvic health physiotherapist.

[33:31] Shannon and MJ discuss how times are changing and people are recognizing the importance of pelvic health.

[37:01] What is the anatomy of the pelvic floor?

[43:30] MJ shares an anecdote of a study she was part of that revealed that women presenting with back and hip pain were predominantly tight, rather than weak in their pelvic floor muscles.

[46:03] One of the advantages of a practice like yoga is that it helps increase body awareness.

[49:40] The words and language we use as yoga teachers and pelvic health professionals is so important. There is a need for communication and education.

[51:07] What is the main thing that MJ wants listeners to understand and take away about pelvic health? She also busts some prevalent myths on the topic.

[57:22] Check out the links for ways to connect with MJ.

[58:03] What do you call the pelvic floor if it is holding tension or if it is weak?

[59:47] Shannon shares her biggest takeaway from this interview with MJ, and a little bit about the Pelvic Health Professionals membership site.


Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicity and Pelvic Health Professionals


Quotes from this episode:

"People can really appreciate 'Oh, I have a whole bunch of muscles down there, I had no idea, and they're actually a lot more significant than I thought them to be.'"

"[The pelvic floor] still a part of the body we kind of ignore, and it's not until you start actually taking courses in pelvic health or doing yoga courses that we start to talk about it because of its importance."

"A muscle that's too weak can cause incontinence, but a muscle that's too tight also can cause incontinence."

"How great is it that we are getting now to the point where women are recognizing the importance of having a good evaluation and are seeking the care themselves!"

"We don't connect with our body very much. We disconnect, if anything."

Aug 5, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 128: Ayurveda, Doshas & Yoga with Angela Glaz



This episode is all about reconnecting the sister sciences, yoga and Ayurveda. We all learn about Ayurveda in out Yoga Teacher Trainings at some level, but a lot of us don’t know how to incorporate it into our classes, or even really how our doshas affect us in our lives and in our business. Angela Glaz has adoped a unique approach in building her yoga business with Ayurveda at its core, and she shares more about how you can bring Ayurveda into your classes too.


Angela is a 500 E-RYT, Ayurvedic Counselor and the Founder of Eka Yoga. She came to yoga in 2002 and since then, she has traveled to India twice to deepen her own practice and to study Yoga and Ayurveda. Most recently, she completed the Ayurvedic Counseling Program at the Kerala Ayurveda Academy. Today, Angela offers Ayurvedic consultations, Yoga and Ayurveda Immersive Courses, online wellness courses and an online holistic membership site, as well as group and private yoga classes.


What are the different doshas, and how do they influence us? Angela dives into the three doshas and their defining characteristics, and explains how we might see them reflected in our yoga practice, our lives and even in our role as business owners. She also reveals how she organizes her classes to go in line with Ayurveda, the technical aspects of offering people classes based on their doshas, and how her online membership site ties into her business.


Tune in to this fascinating episode to learn more about your own doshas, and how you might use this information to thrive in teaching, being a business owner and also living your life.


Key Takeaways:

[5:30] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Angela Glaz.

[6:59] Where did Angela's yoga journey begin?

[8:14] What has led Angela to the work that she does now? What does she do and who does she do it for?

[10:33] Is there a difference between yoga and Ayurveda or is it the same thing?

[11:52] What are the doshas?

[19:38] How do you know what dosha you are? How do you avoid seeing everything through that lens?

[23:48] What is something Angela has learned about the doshas that has really helped her as a yoga teacher?

[25:05] How can yoga teachers bring the doshas and Ayurveda into their classes?

[28:26] Angela shares some words of wisdom around attaching yourself or other people to a dosha.

[30:00] In Angela's yoga studio, people take classes according to their doshas. She explains how this works from a technical and organizational standpoint.

[32:12] When it comes to running a business, what are some things that would help the different doshas?

[37:18] People carry all doshas within them, but usually one is dominant.

[38:34] What is Angela's membership site about and what motivated her to start it?

[41:45] Angela shares a little about the videos she puts up online for her membership site.

[44:57] Who is Angela's target audience for her membership site?

[46:35] Angela shares some final thoughts and resources.

[48:19] Shannon leaves you with two final questions to think about.




Gratitude to our Sponsors Schedulicity and Pelvic Health Professionals


Quotes from this episode:


"The concept behind the studio is to reconnect yoga and Ayurveda, because this gives practitioners a better idea of how to practice for their unique body type."


"Yoga is actually a tool to help us heal our body. It's part of Ayurveda."


"More people could benefit from understanding their unique body type and adjusting their diet, routine, exercise to find optimal health and happiness."


"The biggest thing that I'd like them to take away in their classes is really encouraging people to listen to their body."

Jul 29, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 127: Let Nature Theme Your Classes with Alee Link



Do you create your classes around a certain theme? Or have you been a part of a class where every pose and transition was intentional and flowed, and it left you wishing you knew how to structure your classes like that? Alee Link is great at intentional teaching, and finds the inspiration for her classes in nature - she shares how you can, too!


Alee Link attended her first yoga class when she was 12 years old, and in 2011, she completed her 200-hour RYT certification. In 2013, Alee and her husband founded River Flow Yoga and Wellness in Georgia, where she offers students yoga classes primarily rooted in Vinyasa (Flow) Yoga. She also created the MoonLIT Tribe app, which offers moon rituals, mantra, guided meditation and more for people looking to connect with themselves, each other, the planet, the stars, and everything around us.


One of Alee’s specialities is intentional teaching around a general theme for each class. She shares more about how she chooses her theme for each class, based on things that are going on in nature like the seasons, the placement of the moon, and the stars and what’s going on around her. Shannon and Alee also discuss the importance of intentional teaching, and why teaching classes around a certain theme doesn’t have to involve a lot of work.


If you’ve been thinking about where to get theme ideas for your classes, tune in to this episode to find out why you don’t have to look any further than the nature around us for inspiration and guidance.


Key Takeaways:

[6:18] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Alee Link.

[8:16] What does Alee do, and who does she do it for?

[9:43] Alee was only 12 years old when she went for her first yoga class. When did she decide to become a yoga teacher?

[14:15] What are some things Alee wishes she had known when choosing her first yoga teacher training?

[18:40] How does Alee teach intentionally and theme her classes?

[25:20] Alee shares an anecdote from her experience about the founding of the MoonLIT app, and how yoga teachers can use the app.

[31:37] Shannon and Alee discuss the importance of nature, not just in yoga but in other aspects of life.

[33:20] How much pressure does Alee feel in being intentional with every pose and transition in her teaching sequence? Does she communicate her intentions with her class?

[40:23] When leading yoga teacher training to new teachers, how does Alee guide them to create themes for their classes apart from just focusing on their own practice?

[45:08] How does Alee map out her classes?

[50:01] What is something Alee has learned in leading yoga teacher training?

[52:46] What has been a lightbulb moment for Alee's teachers in her training?

[58:11] Does Alee also incorporate things that are going on around us in the world, in terms of news, current events or politics?

[1:03:29] Get in touch with Alee on social media, check out the MoonLIT app, or visit her websites to find out more about her work.

[1:04:21] Shannon shares her greatest takeaways, and would love to hear yours!




Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity


Quotes from this episode:


"My purpose on this planet is to spread the message of connectivity."


"That's how I teach, is based on what's going on in the natural world around us and that is our greatest teacher."


"My greatest advice is to take the time to understand the natural world."


"Just giving yourself a little space and grace to explore, I think is the biggest thing."


"The natural world is happening around us regardless. So we can either jump into the flow, or force ourselves against it and resist it."


Jul 24, 2019

We have heard from a lot of yoga teachers in the last few weeks regarding the new standards released by Yoga Alliance. In this bonus podcast episode, Shannon Roche explains what this means for both yoga teachers and schools.

Links mentioned:



Jul 22, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

 Ep 126: Body Mindful Yoga with Jennifer Kreatsoulas



This episode deals with a topic that impacts so many of us and our students: body image and making peace with the bodies we have. In the USA, up to 30 million people suffer from an eating disorder, and worldwide, almost 70 million. Yoga can be a powerful tool to navigate the daily challenges of recovery from eating disorders, or even to help people accept their bodies. 


Jennifer Kreatsoulas is a certified yoga therapist specializing in eating disorders and body image. As an inspirational speaker and the author of Body Mindful Yoga: Create a Powerful and Affirming Relationship With Your Body, she helps others who struggle with their bodies find peace of mind with yoga and mindfulness practices. She also provides yoga therapy online and in-person, and coaches healthcare and yoga professionals.


For over 20 years, Jennifer has struggled with anorexia, and she reveals how that inspired her work in helping people who struggle with their bodies through yoga. Shannon and Jennifer discuss what words and cues can be triggering and some alternatives you can use instead, as well as the general language in our culture around food, fitness, and fashion.


Being mindful of our bodies and creating an affirming relationship with our bodies is not easy, but it is work worth doing. This episode will surely shed new light on some of our practices in cueing during yoga classes, and how to be more aware of the language that we use and that surrounds us.


Key Takeaways:

[5:25] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Jennifer Kreatsoulas.

[7:18] Who is Jennifer and what is the work she does?

[9:35] What is an eating disorder?

[12:50] In the US, 30 million people are affected by eating disorders.

[14:26] What made Jennifer decide that yoga would be a part of her recovery?

[16:14] What are some examples of triggering words or actions?

[21:11] Jennifer and Shannon discuss the importance of educating and empowering students with the language you use, as well as bringing inquiry into the class.

[24:20] We're often told to love our bodies, but that is hard to do sometimes.

[26:18] Jennifer shares some of the language around body parts that can be sensitive.

[31:50] What are some other verbal cues to pay attention to?

[34:05] Movement in a yoga class may not come as easily to beginners as it does to us as yoga teachers, who have been doing it for years.

[35:51] What are some of the best practices surrounding body mindful yoga?

[40:34] There is so much power in our words - we need to be mindful of how our words can hurt ourselves, hurt others.

[45:01] Who is Jennifer's target for her book, Body Mindful Yoga?

[46:00] Jennifer also offers mentorship for healthcare professionals and yoga teachers.

[50:03] Jennifer shares some words of compassion for people who are not feeling confident in their bodies.

[52:13] Don't forget to get a copy of Jennifer's book, and do check out her website to learn more about her work.

[53:27] Shannon shares her biggest takeaways from this interview.




Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity


Quotes from this episode:


"[An eating disorder] affects people of all ages, of all genders, of all races, socioeconomic backgrounds."


"We're all learning how to love ourselves better, and we all have our obstacles to doing that."


"If we want to use that language, let's make it empowering and educate our students on what's actually happening in their bodies, and what it means."


"Find the language that resonates with you most authentically."

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