The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

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Feb 25, 2019

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

105: Insurance for Yoga Teachers with Beth McVeigh




As a yoga teacher or yoga studio owner, do you have insurance that protects you if a lawsuit arises? How much coverage is enough? Beth McVeigh, a specialist in liability insurance for yoga instructors and yoga studio owners, joins Shannon in the last episode of the 5-part mini-series, Yoga Studio Business 101, to shed light on the topic of insurance.


Beth McVeigh is the Manager of the Commercial Lines Complementary Health Department at Lackner McLennan Insurance, the largest provider of insurance to yoga instructors and yoga teachers in Canada. They specialize in liability insurance, cover a wide range of yoga modalities, and have 25 years of experience serving the yoga community.


Protecting yourself financially is just as important as serving your audience and catering to their needs. That’s where insurance comes in, but it can be confusing! Beth answers questions relating to the amount of coverage needed, waiver forms, the requirements to apply for insurance and much more. She also has some tips on how best to protect your yoga business and yourself from potential lawsuits that may come up years later.


Whether you’re wondering if you need insurance for your business, or if you’re looking to improve your coverage, after this episode, you’ll definitely have a better understanding of the kinds of insurance you need and should have.


Key Takeaways:

[3:47] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Beth McVeigh.

[5:21] What is Beth's role as Manager of the Commercial Lines Complementary Health Department at Lackner McLennan, and how is it relevant to yoga teachers?

[8:00] Beth shares more about how she got into the yoga space in the insurance world.

[10:03] How much insurance do yoga teachers really need?

[11:54] Shannon and Beth discuss waiver forms - do yoga teachers need them, and how do they work?

[17:36] How soon after completing their training should a new yoga teacher get an insurance policy into place?

[18:31] What do yoga teachers need to get insurance?

[18:59] Do yoga teachers need to be part of a larger organization in order to be insured?

[19:25] What else should new teachers be aware of when it comes to getting insurance?

[20:07] There are three main types of yoga business owners - the yoga teacher, the yoga studio owner, and the traveling yoga teacher. Beth explains the different types of policies available to cater to them.

[23:56] Shannon shares her experience with insurance coverage and teaching yoga in her home.

[25:58] Beth and Shannon clarify some other questions related to renting studio spaces, traveling abroad, event cancellation and disability insurance.

[29:54] What's the difference between an occurrence-based policy and a claims-based policy?

[32:44] What are some other aspects for yoga teachers to consider in order to better protect themselves?

[36:09] Whose responsibility is it in a situation where the teacher has done his / her due diligence and given appropriate instructions, but the student doesn't heed them and gets injured as a result?

[38:48] Beth shares more about the prices and coverage for some of the policies for yoga teachers.

[40:49] Shannon and Beth discuss some instances and examples of scenarios that could take place that might give rise to a claim.

[43:00] Does the scope of practice of yoga teachers play in at all with insurance?

[46:26] There has been a lot of discussion in the yoga world around touch. Beth shares her perspectives on the topic.

[49:30] For yoga teachers in Canada who are looking for insurance or need more information, check out the Lackner McLennan website.

[50:49] What are Beth's thoughts on sharing yoga online?

[53:48] How does insurance change if you are a yoga therapist or if you're certified with the Yoga Therapy Association?

[55:07] Shannon shares her key takeaway - it's important to take a look at your own insurance and make sure it covers you for everything you need.




Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity


Quotes from this episode:


"We've tried to make insurance as fun and painless as possible because nobody likes to have to purchase insurance."


"Unfortunately, in the world that we live in today, people do sue."


"When it comes down to a claim, and you are drawn into a lawsuit, the more detail you have, the more you have written down and the more that you can show, the more the chances are that you're going to be exempted from it."


"We know that a lot of claims will come about years from the time of the incident."


"It doesn't matter how small the class is, or if you're only teaching part-time, you're still exposing yourself, so you still need to make sure that you're fully covered."


"If you're doing any sort of specialty yoga, then we would definitely have to put in a bigger policy in place."

Dec 3, 2018

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 093: How to Build a Home Studio with Jo Stewart and Rane Bowen




Have you thought of building a home-based studio? What does it really take to get a home yoga studio up and running? What are the challenges you might face, and the biggest pros? Jo Stewart and Rane Bowen are yoga teachers who not only had a home studio, but also built a new one, and on this episode, they reveal the nitty, gritty details of what it takes.


Jo has been teaching yoga for over ten years, and has completed over 2000 hours of teacher training. Rane is a newer yoga teacher, who got into teaching yoga after being diagnosed with stomach cancer and having his stomach removed in 2015. Rane is originally from New Zealand, but moved to Australia, where he and Jo live, teach yoga and host a podcast together.


Jo and Rane share their experiences in setting up their first home studio, and their process in recently building a new one. They dive into how they engage their followers on social media, and how they showcase their studio to generate publicity and grow their business. From the financial aspect of running a home studio, to the props you need, and even the challenges that come with setting boundaries - Jo, Rane and Shannon examine the intricacies of a yoga home studio.


If you’ve ever wondered about how to build and maintain not only a yoga studio but also your own personal yoga practice, this episode with Jo and Rane is sure to give you some deep insights and actionable steps.


Key Takeaways:

[5:19] Shannon introduces her guests for this episode - Jo Stewart and Rane Bowen

[7:02] What got Jo and Rane started in yoga? What was their first yoga class like?

[10:01] What led Jo and Rane to start the podcast?

[12:21] Why did Jo and Rane decide to open a yoga studio?

[13:17] Jo talks about their journey of opening their yoga studio, and now recently re-doing the space.

[15:31] Jo shares some of her fears, concerns and joys around starting from scratch to rebuild the home studio.

[18:03] What are the challenges of having your own space vs teaching at other spaces?

[21:03] How many people can Jo and Rane's home space accommodate?

[21:41] What are some of the big pros of having your own space?

[23:50] Jo speaks to the financial aspects of setting up and running a home studio.

[25:57] Rane shares more about his other gigs in addition to teaching yoga.

[29:13] What are some of the things that really make a good space?

[34:02] What are some of the essential props necessary for a home studio?

[36:41] How many other teachers use the space?

[38:57] Jo highlights some of her success with print advertising and getting the word out about the studio.

[43:00] Shannon and Jo walk through the process from a students' perspective.

[44:07] What are some policies or rules they've had to establish for their space?

[47:02] How does Jo keep in touch with students in between classes?

[48:24] One-on-one vs. group classes. Jo breaks down the makeup of the classes she teaches.

[49:47] What do Jo and Rane see in the future for their business?

[52:42] What advice do Jo and Rane have for other people who are working together as couples?

[55:31] Jo and Rane share some advice for yoga teachers.

[57:39] What are some things that help in their own practice?

[59:42] Jo and Rane leave us with some final thoughts for teachers who are doubting themselves or feeling isolated.

[1:04:12] Get in touch with Jo and Rane via their website, Facebook group, and on social media!

[1:04:51] Shannon would love to hear from you - do reach out to connect with her virtually or in person!



Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity


Quotes from this episode:


"Yoga just kinda got me out of that tortured artist paradigm. It really helped me creatively, but also just mentally and emotionally - I just got so many benefits from it." - Jo


"I never liked the idea of signing a lease, and having a whole lot of financial pressure on me as new business was growing, so always just made sense to me to do it at home!" - Jo


"You don't want to leave all of your promotion and stuff till the end. Get started early! Share your vision, share your ideas!" - Jo


"If you are not putting a load of energy into your home space, you don't often get a lot of people coming." - Jo


"It's almost like you're just going and hanging out with some people, and sharing some stuff that you really enjoy doing with them." - Rane


"We're a body-positive studio, we're really inclusive, and we really wanted to show different ages, different body types, just like yoga is for everyone." - Jo


"If you want to work on your self-love, and just feeling good about yourself -  that's what this practice is for!" - Jo

Nov 26, 2018

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 92: Accessible Yoga Language with Kesse, Chantel and Katie


As yoga teachers, we’d all like to reach as many people as possible with our practice and share yoga with them. However, what we may not realize is that we may be inadvertently be excluding or even offending people - through something as simple (but powerful) as our language.


I met Chantel Ehler, Katie Juelson and Kesse Hodge at the Accessible Yoga Conference in Toronto last summer. I immediately knew they would be the best people to have a discussion about accessible yoga language, and delve into some uncomfortable areas surrounding the topic.


Language can be a very powerful tool for empowering people, but it can also instill fear, be hurtful, or downright offensive. My three guests share insights about the kind of language it takes to create safe spaces for people to be vulnerable. We touch on topics like using gendered pronouns, inclusive rather than exclusive language, and how to ask people about what they’re going through and build relationships with them.


We’re all going to make mistakes along the way. Even I had some fear around doing this episode, and sharing some of my vulnerable experiences. The key is to remember that every interaction is an opportunity to learn and grow.


If you’ve ever struggled with presenting yoga with accessible language, or worried about offending someone because of something you’ve said, this episode is going to be such an eye-opener.


About the Guests:

Chantel, founder of Amara Vidya Yoga in Ontario, Canada, began teaching yoga in 2002, and was the location manager for the Accessible Yoga Conference in June 2018.

Katie has been a yoga teacher for 5 years, and currently works with Canada's National Para-soccer team and with other community programs. She focuses on sharing yoga with people who have cognitive and developmental disabilities. Chantel and Katie also recently co-founded Yoga Service and Accessibility Canada. Kesse is a self-professed fat, atheist, agender, spoonie (person living with chronic illness/ pain) who specializes in teaching adaptive, mix-level yoga to all humans. They are the founder of Change Yoga, the Director of Inclusion and Communications at Rooted Yoga, and have over 15 years of experience in the field.

Key Takeaways:

[5:00] Shannon introduces her three guests for this episode - Chantel Ehler, Katie Juelson, and Kesse Hodge.

[8:08] Language is very important in empowering students. What kind of language is not as empowering, unhelpful or downright offensive? Chantel shares her thoughts.

[11:19] Katie addresses language that is empowering vs not so helpful in the area of disability.

[12:46] Shannon shares a personal anecdote from her experience with a paraplegic in her class.

[13:33] Katie gives some tips on the cues that can be used in a yoga class.

[15:25] Kesse gives their take on how every opportunity interacting with students is an opportunity to learn and to grow.

[19:29] Emotional safety is a crucial part of creating a safe space for your yoga students. Kesse elaborates more on that idea, sharing some personal anecdotes.

[25:20] Language can exclude people who may benefit from whatever is being offered, be it yoga, or assistance, or anything else- being conscious, deliberate and inclusive can help with this.

[29:26] What are the after-effects of the damage that is inadvertently done through language, and how can they be addressed?

[34:25] Katie raises the importance of community relationships in the healing journey.

[00:36:30] Shannon and Katie discuss the issues with saying that people with disabilities are inspiring.

[39:45] What's the deal with using gendered pronouns to refer to people? Kesse and Chantel share their thoughts on how best to approach this.

[49:25] Asking is the best way to educate yourself. Is it ever offensive to ask about disability, or what someone is going through, or even what pronoun they prefer?

[55:14] Listeners, we'd love to hear your experiences and how you've learned to change something you say.

[56:40] What were some of Shannon's key takeaways from this discussion? We'd love for you to hear yours too - share them in the show notes!

[59:40] Shannon has a special bonus for you!



Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity


Quotes from this episode:


"Someone's going to find something offensive in anything." - Chantel


"Where I think the disconnect is, is how to address it when you've noticed something's going on." - Chantel


"Language is an extremely powerful tool, and it can really empower someone's sense of pride, identity, purpose." - Katie


"Put the person before the impairment." - Katie


"We think that our normal is everybody else's normal .... but [realize] that that's just absolutely not the case." - Kesse


"I didn't like that I was essentially complicit in hurting somebody without my knowledge." - Kesse


"Once you say something, you can't un-say it. And the person can't un-hear it. And the damage that can be done, is done." - Kesse


"You're asking these people to come and be vulnerable, and you have a responsibility to make that space as safe as possible." - Kesse


"The person who's chosen to not say anything, is the person that is the most exposed to harm." - Chantel


"Inclusion grows with relationship." - Chantel


"If we are not getting to know the student, we won't know how to include them." - Chantel

Nov 19, 2018

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 091: 100 Conversations with Yoga Teachers with Mado Hesselink



What would it be like to talk to 100 yoga teachers and find out what their challenges are, and what they've learned so far? When Mado Hesselink decided she wanted to increase the work she was doing with yoga teachers, she did just that and personally interviewed 100 yoga teachers - this episode is all about what she learned from those conversations.


Mado has been teaching yoga since 2005, and training yoga teachers since 2010. She is the creator of Yoga Teacher Resource, and teaches at yoga teacher trainings around the southeastern US. After some big life changes, Mado felt the need to change things up in her business. Her discussion with her Fairy Godmother Business Coach helped her find her niche, create a lead magnet, and inspired her 100-Conversations project.


As yoga teachers, we may all feel our struggles and challenges are individual, and we are alone in our experiences. Mado’s conversations with yoga teachers young and old, full-time and part-time, and from all walks of life revealed certain similarities. From the pressures of being a yoga teacher, to finding the delicate balance between your own personal yoga practice vs teaching yoga, to the challenges facing entrepreneurs in the yoga space - Shannon and Mado discuss it all.


If you’ve ever wondered what wisdom and insight you could get from talking to 100 other yoga teachers, wonder no more. Mado’s done the legwork so you don’t have to - just sit back and enjoy the great nuggets in this episode.


Key Takeaways:

[5:44] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Mado Hesselink.

[6:36] What inspired Mado to start working on the project of talking to 100 yoga teachers? She shares how her Fairy Godmother Business Coach helped her along her journey of finding her niche.

[9:39] Mado reveals how she applied the concept of a lead magnet to her business and some tips for you to do the same!

[13:27] Why did Mado decide to talk to 100 yoga teachers?

[15:40] What made Mado pick the number 100?

[16:07] How did Mado spread the word about her project, and how did she select the yoga teachers she would connect with?

[18:59] How did Mado pick the questions she asked the yoga teachers?

[23:24] Mado shares some of the responses she received that surprised, intrigued and stuck with her.

[30:02] What are Mado's suggestions for someone considering taking a 200-hr?

[31:07] From her conversations, what are some of the takeaways that have impacted Mado as a yoga teacher?

[34:51] How can yoga teachers market yoga better?

[39:15] Yoga teachers care so much and put so much pressure on themselves to inspire and challenge their students. Mado and Shannon discuss this in relation to drop-in classes vs. registered sessions.

[43:35] Mado highlights the tension that exists between yoga studio owner, yoga teacher and yoga student.

[48:41] Get in touch with Mado via her website to get access to her podcast, 100 Yoga Class Themes download and other resources!

[49:14] Shannon wraps up with her key takeaways from this episode.


Mado Hesselink, Yoga Teacher Resource

The Yoga Teacher Resource Facebook Group

100 Yoga Class Themes

Yoga Teacher Resource Podcast

Yoga Teacher Resource Podcast Episode 6: How to succeed as a yoga teacher by focusing on cooperation over competition with Shannon Crow

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast Episode 088: Creating Professional Yoga Videos with Kira Sloane

Map to connect with other yoga teachers

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast Episode 085: A Discussion About Hands-On Assists with Amanda Kingsmith

Yoga Teacher Resource Podcast Episode 8: [Reality Check] Teaching yoga full time vs part time.

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast Episode 061: Too Many Yoga Teachers with Kimma Stark

Accessible Yoga Conference, Toronto

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast Episode 090: Teaching Baby & Me Yoga with Shannon Crow

One-on-One Coaching with Mado Hesselink

One-on-One Consultation with Shannon Crow

The Yoga Conference and Show, Toronto March 2019

Mama Nurture Prenatal Yoga Teacher Training

Yoga for Pelvic Health Teacher Training, November 2019


Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity


Quotes from Mado Hesselink:


"Who do you feel most energized when you're teaching?"


"They can look at their content that they already have out there and see what's really resonating with people."


"I just want to get a sense of what is out there. What are the concerns, what are the dreams? What's the environment, the content that people are teaching in, to help me figure out how I can be of service."


"The happiest yoga teachers that I spoke with are not trying to make a living teaching."


"For me, the inherent conflicts and the murkiness of being an entrepreneur in the yoga space is actually really exciting, and keeps me more engaged."


"I learn best through teaching."


"As popular as yoga is, there is still a lot of misinformation about what yoga is."


"I want us to do a better job of marketing yoga to the public, for their own benefit!"


"We make money for what's important to us, what we really find valuable."

Nov 12, 2018

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 090: Teaching Baby and Me Yoga with Shannon Crow



How can a yoga niche help to grow a profitable and sustainable yoga business? In this episode, Shannon shares about a popular area of yoga - Baby and Me yoga, and how this can be a niche to build your yoga business.


Very often, postnatal parents are wanting to get back to yoga and bring baby along, but adult yoga classes aren’t the right place for them. Having crawling / crying / curious babies in the room, new parents adjusting to new routines, and parents developing that bond with their babies - these are all things that play into the flow and rhythm of a yoga class. Baby and Me yoga classes are designed to take all these and more into consideration.


Shannon shares how she structured her classes and the different elements she incorporates into her classes, keeping both baby and parent in mind. She also highlights other considerations when it comes to Baby and Me yoga, including timing of classes, the spaces in which you conduct these classes, and why she chose the name “Baby and Me yoga” instead of other variations out there.


This episode is perfect for anyone who teaches prenatal or postnatal students and for people who want to find their yoga niche.


Key Takeaways:

[6:34] How did Shannon get into teaching Baby and Me yoga?

[8:37] Why does Shannon call her class "Baby and Me" yoga? Shannon shares some insight into her personal journey as a new mom.

[12:12] What might you see in a student that is coming to a yoga class postnatally?

[16:20] Shannon shares a little about maternity leave, and why supporting new parents is so important.

[20:11] Timing is also important when it comes to Baby and Me yoga. When can new parents start coming to Baby and Me yoga?

[22:04] Where will you be teaching Baby and Me yoga?

[23:32] Baby and Me yoga is very different from traditional yoga classes with adults. Shannon has some tips and tricks for you.

[28:32] If you'd like to learn more about the elements Shannon includes in her Baby and Me yoga class, you can attend the MamaNuture Prenatal Yoga Teacher Training or check out the Online Course that goes into more detail about this.

[29:20] What are the 8 elements that Shannon includes in Baby and Me yoga?

[30:19] Shannon dives into the element of songs and sounds.

[32:54] Shannon's second element is infant massage. How does that tie into Baby and Me yoga?

[36:03] Element #3 is musical movement. Music is as important as movement in a child's development.

[39:20] Shannon incorporates sign language in her Baby and Me yoga classes. She has some tips on how best to do it.

[44:21] #5: Baby poses - the key to this is to really follow baby's lead.

[47:55] Community time is another element of Shannon's Baby and Me yoga classes. She highlights why this is an important part of the class.

[50:39] The next element is independent practice, and how that helps parents reconnect with themselves.

[51:54] Baby and me breath is the final element. Shannon shares an example of a practice she uses.

[55:00] Shannon ends with her final insights about yoga and how it can help parents and babies.

[57:46] What is your one takeaway from this episode about teaching to postnatal parents? Share your thoughts!


Mama Nurture Prenatal Yoga Teacher Training

Online Course on Baby and Me Yoga

The Genius of Natural Childhood, by Sally Goddard Blythe

Itsy Bitsy Yoga, by Helen Garabedian

Baby Om: Yoga for Mothers and Babies by Laura Staton and Sarah Perron


Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity


Quotes from Shannon Crow:


"Your baby doesn't come with an owner's manual, and you have to figure out what that little human needs."


"Sometimes we're feeling shame or ashamed of what we need as parents when it comes to work."


"Be careful about judging, others for sure, but also yourself."


"Touch between parent and baby is another form of communication. It's a really clear and concrete way to express love."


"This Baby and Me yoga class is a really great place to practice and learn together."


"You're not only dealing with parents, you're also dealing with what baby needs."


"Baby and me yoga offers parents a gentle practice to reconnect with body and breath. In this time, they can bond with baby, and also connect to other parents.”

Nov 5, 2018

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 089: Yoga for Stress Management with Courtney Butler-Robinson



You can’t deny it - we live in a stressful world. Everyone knows yoga is useful when it comes to stress management, but Courtney Butler-Robinson has focused her practice exclusively around dealing with stress and more specifically, heart health.


Courtney has had a long and illustrious career in the field of yoga. She’s been practicing for nearly 40 years, training yoga teachers for 20, and a certified yoga therapist for over 10 years (including being one of the first yoga therapists to be recognized by the International Association of Yoga Therapists). She is the owner and director of Balance Yoga and Wellness, a registered yoga school, and works as a stress management specialist, particularly in relation to reversing heart disease.


Stress is something everyone deals with, but Courtney highlights its connection to heart disease, and how her part in Dr. Dean Ornish’s lifestyle medicine practice is helping to heal patients. She provides insight into how yoga can be a part of the medical world, and why love, support, gratitude, and joy are some of the key ingredients to a long and healthy life.


If you’ve always wondered how to reach the medical world through your yoga teaching, or how to incorporate stress management in your yoga training, this episode is definitely one you need hear.


Key Takeaways:

[1:04] One lucky listener stands a chance to win a prize this week!

[3:45] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode - Courtney Butler-Robinson.

[6:15] How did Courtney's yoga journey start? When did she get into yoga, and what brought her to it?

[7:39] What pushed Courtney to start working in yoga for stress management?

[9:49] Courtney shares a little about the work that Dr. Dean Ornish does.

[12:31] How is Courtney's class different from the average yoga class in its approach towards stress management?

[16:03] Courtney describes a typical day in the life of one of her clients.

[17:45] What are some of the most common issues people are dealing with when they come to see Courtney?

[20:16] What does a "prescription" entail? Courtney outlines some of the differences between her current work and her work in private practice.

[22:33] Courtney gives some recommendations when it comes to keeping your heart healthy.

[25:25] Courtney highlights the importance of gratitude in heart health.

[28:06] What has Courtney learned through her 10 years of training teachers?

[31:19] How can yoga teachers move into the medical side of things?

[33:49] Courtney has some advice for yoga teachers with students looking to improve their heart health or reduce stress in their lives.

[35:58] Shannon and Courtney discuss whether overall stress and anxiety levels are going up in society.

[41:16] Find out more about Courtney, the work she does and more through her website, and on social media.

[42:12] Courtney's book, The Mud and the Lotus, is a guide and a workbook for yoga teachers.

[48:58] Shannon shares how she connected with Courtney, and how you can use this method to connect with others.

[53:10] What is your biggest takeaway from this episode? Shannon would love to hear from you!


The Mud and the Lotus, by Courtney Butler-Robinson

Courtney Butler-Robinson on Facebook

Courtney Butler-Robinson on Instagram

Courtney Butler-Robinson on YouTube

Balance Yoga and Wellness

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast Ep 088: Creating Professional Yoga Videos with
Kira Sloane

Dr. Baxter Bell

Larry Payne

Dr. Dean Ornish - Lifestyle Medicine


Learn more about Relaxation Response

Learn more about Oxytocin and the Heart

Learn more about the Elizabeth Blackburn Studies


Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity


Quotes from Courtney Butler-Robinson:


"When I started teaching, it was because of illness."


"I work in the field of lifestyle medicine."


"We actually reverse disease without any kind of major medical intervention. It's diet, exercise, yoga, meditation and love and support."


"The point of stress management yoga is to keep the body in a relaxation response from beginning to end."


"Movement helps to increase artery flexibility. It helps reduce lymphatic congestion in your system. ... Keep moving!"


"What I've learned personally is... that my inner wisdom knows better than listening to everything."


"I care more about your heart for service than your headstand."


"I would just encourage people to find who you are as a yoga teacher, and to be that. And to have confidence in that, because there are the people out there that need what you have to offer."


"With the 9 weeks of the program, depression rates are down 60%."


"Taking care of yourself, and loving yourself and being kind to yourself, is more a matter of quality of life... than it is about whether you live or die.”

Oct 29, 2018

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

088: Creating Professional Yoga Videos with Kira Sloane



Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could connect with your yoga students in the comfort of their own home? With Yoga Anytime, Kira Sloane not only teaches yoga online but also helps other yoga teachers share their yoga online.


Kira was drawn to teaching yoga from her very first savasana. After being diagnosed with endometriosis in 1995, she turned to yoga to find relief for her pain and immediately wanted to share the sense of well-being she experienced with others. Today, Kira works for yoga to spread the healing she has experienced in her own practice by making videos and offering online yoga courses.


Videos are a great tool for reaching a large audience, but all that can backfire if your videos are not professional and well done. Kira reveals what she has learned from creating over 2000 yoga videos - from what kind of clothing works for the camera, to how to focus on your viewer beyond the lens, and why doing yoga on videos is ultimately all about connection and relationships, both with your audience and yourself.


Whether you’re already a veteran at making yoga videos, or a newbie to the scene, you’re sure to get some great tips and insights about what it takes to make a truly great, professional yoga video.


To see all of the links and notes for this episode (including timestamps)
- visit

Oct 22, 2018

The Connected Yoga Teacher Podcast

Ep 087: Yoga for Fertility with Beth Heller


The journey of infertility is a difficult one. Beth Heller joins Shannon on this episode to share her own story and experiences with infertility, and how that led her to become the co-founder and co-director of Pulling Down the Moon.


Beth is a mother and a yoga teacher whose niche and passion is yoga for fertility. She has a degree in human nutrition and spent 4 years working as a nutrition researcher. She found her way to yoga while going through high stress, infertility, a miscarriage, and the stillbirth of her daughter at 38 weeks. In these experiences, she found the true value of yoga and wanted to share how yoga helped her regain her period and get pregnant, and how it held and supported her through loss.


In 2002, Beth founded Pulling Down the Moon with Tami Quinn, where she now teaches yoga in classes and one-on-one instruction, with a focus on yoga for fertility, prenatal yoga, and yoga to people at the age and stage of pregnancy. She is also a member of the International Association of Yoga Therapists and the American Society for Reproductive Medicine.


Beth shares her insight about how yoga helps improve fertility, and how she has helped women through their fertility journey in her practice, particularly by creating a supportive space in her studio. Shannon and Beth also discuss the benefits of online classes in breaking down barriers for some people, and how yoga teachers can fully support women or couples going through loss, miscarriage or fertility difficulties.


An open, honest and heartfelt conversation, this episode great for any yoga teacher working with people dealing with fertility, and pregnancy, and interested in finding out more about discovering your niche in yoga.


To see all of the links and notes for this episode (including timestamps)
- visit

Oct 15, 2018


Live video is taking the online world by storm, and it’s not a trend is going away soon. How can yoga teachers get on board and harness the power of video? Ian Gray of Seriously Social has tips, strategies, and advice on how you can use live video as a yoga teacher to share video content.


Ian is a man of many talents. Not only is he an international speaker, trainer, teacher, web developer and consultant who specializes in live video, he is also a husband, father of two, professional singer and self-professed geek. Through his company Seriously Social, and his weekly Facebook Live video show, The Free Range Social Show, Ian helps business owners and entrepreneurs use live video to build and expand their businesses.


Doing a live video can seem incredibly scary, but feeling nervous is a very natural response. Ian shares some of his own personal experiences getting started with live video, and his strategies to get over your fear. He also reveals the three main barriers people have when it comes to doing live video, and how you can break through them. He explains why consistency and having a group to lean on for support can make all the difference in getting on board with live video. Ian also breaks down the different live video platforms, and how they can be used to reach your target audience.


If you’re interested in sharing video content but aren’t sure how to get started, this episode is just for you.

To see all of the links and notes for this episode (including timestamps) - visit

Oct 8, 2018

085: A Discussion About Hands-On Assists with Amanda Kingsmith and Shannon Crow


Do you offer your students hands-on assists or adjustments or do you steer clear of touch in a yoga class?


Amanda Kingsmith invited Shannon back on the M.B.OM podcast to talk about hands-on assists (sometimes called adjustments).


Amanda is a yoga teacher with a business studies background. She works 1:1 with yoga teachers and hosts two podcasts - one about travel and the other for yoga teachers. She is an enthusiastic world traveler when she is not at home in Alberta, Canada.


Click here to see our full show notes page.

Oct 1, 2018

084: Yoga for Scoliosis with Christine Jaureguiberry


Christine Jaureguiberry has niched down over the years as a yoga teacher. She now works mostly with individuals who have scoliosis. This is fueled by her own love of yoga. At the age of five, Christine was diagnosed with structural scoliosis. Her parents first put her in ballet. As she grew, she stayed active, but in her teen years, her pain started to increase.


Christine spent a lot of time visiting physiotherapists, osteopaths and chiropractors. She wanted them to “fix” her, but instead found that the effects from the treatments wouldn’t last long


After Christine’s first yoga class (a Sivananda class in 2004), she noticed that she felt much better. Yoga made Christine feel better and she finally felt like she was in control of her own well-being.


It was after becoming a mother of two that Christine decided the timing was right to take her yoga teacher training.


Now Christine works mainly with individuals who are experiencing back pain, scoliosis or other back-related conditions. She loves to empower people so they can live pain-free. She teaches alignment and posture, bearing in mind the unique bodies and shapes. Christine makes yoga accessible to everyone.


5:34 - Meet Christine Jaureguiberry, who was diagnosed with structural scoliosis at the age of five. Christine shares her journey to yoga and how that motivated her to become a yoga teacher.


11:03 - What might a yoga student with scoliosis look like in a yoga class? Adam’s Forward Bend: a technique to determine if someone has scoliosis


12:20 - Definition of scoliosis: Scoliosis is a lateral (side-to-side) curve in the spine, usually combined with a rotation of the vertebrae.


14:18 - Difference between structural scoliosis versus functional scoliosis


“80 - 90% of people have some sort of functional scoliosis” - Christine Jaureguiberry


16:08 - Christine shares how she is one of the 70% of individuals with an idiopathic cause (meaning the cause of her scoliosis is not known).


17:16 - Why it is important to diagnose scoliosis in children and teens. In most countries, it is rare to have scoliosis screening, but Christine was lucky to be living in Germany where screening was done.


18:48 - As yoga teachers, diagnosing scoliosis (or anything) is out of our scope of practice, but Christine shares how if we are teaching children’s yoga - we can tell parents if we notice something that could be checked by their healthcare provider


20:09 - How diagnosis before puberty can actually correct scoliosis


21:15 - Yoga poses, considerations, and cues that Christine offers to students who are dealing with scoliosis. She talks about how she gradually works with a framework that offers poses involve:


  1. Releasing
  2. Lengthening
  3. Derotation
  4. Strengthening


24:30 - Study by Dr. Loren Fishman on side plank for scoliosis and how you may get students in your classes referring to this study


25:44 - Christine shares how she feels about adjustments (hands-on assists) when working with students with scoliosis and how she sustained an injury from one in her yoga teacher training.


32:38 - How a yoga teacher can guide students with scoliosis, who may not know what is “straight”, “centre” or “balanced” in their body


33:10 - Poses that Christine has removed to her own yoga practice (shoulder stand)


34:50 - Things to consider when someone has spinal fusion or Herrington rods (*Herrington rods are not done now, but students over 35 years old may have them)


36:36 - Why lying on the back may not be comfortable for those who have scoliosis and how to modify for comfort


“Go with the sensations that your student is feeling, rather than what you think looks straight or even.” - Christine Jaureguiberry


38:45 - How Christine feels about 1:1 versus group classes and how she prefers to work with individuals with scoliosis


40:03 - What Christine wishes all yoga teachers knew when working with yoga students who have scoliosis


“It’s not about the pose, it’s about how you practice the pose.” - Christine Jaureguiberry


41:55 - How to work 1:1 with Christine (yoga students and teachers)


Christine’s Facebook Group: Yoga for Scoliosis Community (for both students with scoliosis and yoga teachers working with students who have scoliosis)


Christine’s website - Work 1:1 with Christine - online or in-person (yoga or mentorship)


If you would like to offer a birthday gift to Shannon:


  1. Share a favourite podcast episode
  2. Leave a review on iTunes
  3. Leave a review on The Connected Yoga Teacher Facebook page


Christine’s online course for yoga teachers -- Introduction to Teaching Yoga for Scoliosis: How to teach yoga safely for students with scoliosis


10% discount code for Christine's course (for our podcast listeners)


Episode 29: Creating Your About Me Page with Trevor Parks [Consultation Call]


The Connected Teacher Facebook Group


Apply for the Online Group Program for Yoga Teachers


Book a Consultation Call with Shannon


Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity

Sep 24, 2018

083: Instagram for Yoga Teachers with Daniel McIntire


As a yoga teacher have you thought about creating an Instagram account? Do you already have an Instagram presence and wonder if you’re on the right path? Have you thought about creating a separate account for your yoga business? Today’s guest, Daniel McIntire, the founder of Influncrrs helps to answer these and many more questions about Instagram.


Daniel McIntire knew yoga was right for him the first time he tried it. It took him over 3 years to consider teaching but when he did his 200 YTT it was another great fit. He began by teaching part-time and expanded into full-time teaching when he quit his corporate job in 2016. He taught several classes a week to sustain a living but found in time that he was getting burnt out.


Daniel has happily found a place for yoga in his life- as a hobby. He has found his current niche as the creator and owner of Influncrrs by following his passion for incorporating his yoga practice into his online presence. As he expanded his skills in this area, he was able to help others market events on Snapchat and Instagram. Daniel came to realize that he felt most passionate about and excelled in guiding clients through expanding their business through Instagram. When working with his clients focuses on a couple of key goals 1) to increase traffic to their Instagram account and 2) encourage public engagement and feedback.


Daniel shares many gems including the importance of quality over quantity when it comes to posting, the value of public engagement in the comments section, and his 3 key components to a good post.


7:05 Daniel’s yoga journey


12:00 How Daniel started sharing his yoga on Instagram and then turning that into a career


16:35 How often Daniel recommends posting- quality over quantity


19:55 How Daniel prepares his Instagram posts- gives himself 30 minutes in a quiet space and reflects on the subject of the post


21:45 Daniel on captions and the opportunity it affords to connect with your words, along with your photo


22:25 The Importance of interacting with your audience by replying to comments- Daniel checks in daily


23:20 Shannon asks Daniel whether she should have a personal account and a separate business account


27:35 Daniel on Instagram Stories and cautions putting out too many stories and how they can be beneficial for showing another side of yourself


30:55 Shannon asks for advice on engaging her followers with her podcast-related posts


34:00 Daniel’s helps his client to draw out what they have to offer and talks about the importance of clients creating their own content


34:55 On Daniel’s realization that engagement is more valuable than followers


35:25 How Daniel helps his clients 1) get traffic to their account 2) get more engagement with their content (such as a free e-book) which helps clients create a list of leads, discover their niche, and develop a long-term strategy


37:25 Daniel’s feeling that there is so much misinformation about social media engagement and that it is simpler than is perceived


39:35 The best way to connect with Daniel and request a free week of consultation


42:30 Linktree- allows you to share more than one link on Instagram


43:30 Shannon’s wrap-up and key takeaways



Daniel on Instagram @dmacyoga


Daniel's Business on Instagram @nfluncrrs


Daniel's partner Courtney on Instagram @courtrandyoga


Shannon's Instagram Account @shannon_crow_yoga


Influncrrs E-Guide: Win on Instagram


Fuel Yoga Workouts in Portland, OR


The Connected Teacher Facebook Group


Follow The Connected Teacher on YouTube


Book a Consultation Call with Shannon


To Contact our virtual assistant Samantha Scott for website design help and more:


Tech Crazy Va: Website Design, System Efficiencies & Virtual Assistant Services

7-Steps to Link Schedulicity to your Instagram account


Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity

Sep 17, 2018

082: Yoga and Fibromyalgia with Pamela Crane


We are so grateful to welcome Pamela Crane, a member of the International Association of Yoga Therapist (IAYT) who is currently working towards her Masters in Yoga Therapy at Maryland University of Integrative Health.  She is a Yoga Alliance 200 RYT, a Reiki 1 and 2 practitioner, and a member of the National Dance Education Association (NDEO).


On today’s episode, Shannon asks Pamela to speak to her experience with Fibromyalgia- as a sufferer and as a yoga therapist. As a lifelong dancer, Pamela was devastated when the pain of Fibromyalgia changed her life. In addition to the condition, she dealt with chronic pain, anxiety, and depression for years and credits yoga as a major factor in her path toward healing.


Pamela wants to share the benefits of yoga with others and as a yoga therapist has worked with those suffering from Fibromyalgia, dancers, and most recently those who work in corporate environments by providing workshops on stress reduction.


Pamela and Shannon discuss Pamela’s personal experience with this condition, how to balance the yin and yang of physical activity, how yoga teachers can support their students with Fibromyalgia and much more.

6:50 Pamela’s first yoga class


9:10 Pamela describes how yoga “saved her life”


12:35 How Fibromyalgia wasn’t understood until the later 2000s and suffers previous to this time weren’t validated and made to feel it was psychological


13:05 Pamela’s definition of Fibromyalgia and her experience with the condition


17:10 How Pamela has been able to manage her pain


19:20 Pamela expands on how it feels to suffer from the condition and the sufferer's relationship to pain


20:40 How practicing gratitude and forgiveness has helped Pamela


22:00 Practicing mindfulness and meditation


22:55 How to support a new student who suffers from Fibromyalgia and the importance of keeping in mind that yoga teachers can’t diagnose or treat people, rather support the student to find their own healing


25:35 How meditation, restorative yoga, or yin vs. yang might not be the answer for every sufferer will work- listen to the individual


26:55 How aerobic activity can benefit those with Fibromyalgia, the importance of not pushing too hard and how yoga can facilitate those activities


29:10 Pamela’s personal experience with finding balance with physical activities


33:50 As a yoga teacher when planning classes “less is more” and checking in with students after class (even a day or two later)


35:45 What Pamela likes to include in her yoga classes: constructive rest, sitali and viloma breath, loving-kindness meditation


42:15 Pamela’s work as a yoga therapist for stress management workshops in corporate settings


43:55 On Pamela’s love of helping those who may not believe yoga is right for them and guiding them towards a style that may work


45:30 Pamela’s belief that stress, in her own case, was a major factor in developing Fibromyalgia


47:20 When Pamela will receive her Masters in Yoga Therapy from Maryland University of Integrative Health and her advice on choosing a school if you aspire to become a yoga therapist


50:40 How to reach Pamela and her work with clients online and in-person


53:00 Shannon’s closing thoughts and key takeaways, including her own experience with “less is more”



Pamela’s Website: Crane Yoga Therapy


Jump-start your 2019: 6-Week Group Program for Yoga Entrepreneurs


Metta Meditation by Shannon Crow


The Connected Teacher Facebook Group


Book a Consultation Call with Shannon


Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity

Sep 10, 2018

081: Set-Up to Teach Private Yoga [Consultation Call] with Stephanie Brunson


Do you or have you considered teaching private yoga classes as a way to set up or grow a yoga business? If so, this episode is for you!


Shannon shares a consultation call with the kind permission of Stephanie Brunson. Stephanie has been teaching yoga for 10 years and has recently come to the realization that teaching students one-on-one is a viable option for her. She is excited at the prospect of changing focus but is asking where to start with her new endeavor.


Stephanie  turned to The Connect Yoga Teacher Facebook group and asked:


Can anyone help me with setting up in home yoga lessons? I have been teaching now for almost 10 years and have recently been asked to teach private sessions. I don’t even know where to begin. Liability, waivers, session goals sheets, session pricing? Packages or partner lessons? Any help or advice is appreciated.


With her experience as a consultant to yoga teachers and teaching private yoga classes Shannon guides Stephanie through some key considerations along with some of the benefits, she has found teaching one-on-one. Shannon also sends Stephanie off with some concrete steps as she moves toward her goals.


10:20 Stephanie’s question to The Connected Yoga Teacher Facebook Group


11:10 Stephanie’s struggle to set her prices and to articulate what she is offering


11:50 The mindset around private yoga versus other one-on-one teaching situations (such as piano lessons) and the benefit of teaching private yoga classes


17:40 Your first session with your client- bring a liability and waiver form to help with intake and asking your client to do some movement for assessment (while avoiding diagnosing conditions)


21:40 Thinking about working with a client as part of their team (even if their team hasn’t been established yet) and on keeping clear boundaries with your scope of practice


26:20 Asking your client what their goals are and on meeting them where they are and keeping track of their progress


28:30 Designing package rates


30:35 Shannon walks Stephanie through what to consider when setting her rates


34:05 Considering safety and liability issues when going to your client’s home or holding the session in your home


35:55 Considering prices for a session with 2 or more people (semi-private)


37:00 Marketing and advertising and the benefit of word-of-mouth


39:50 Creating social media posts that address potential clients fears and special needs or perhaps offering specialized services (such as couples yoga or yoga for back pain)


44:15 Stephanie asks about online one-on-one sessions


46:30 Stephanie considers good places to advertise to target her audience


48:40 Scheduling your clients and organizing your schedule and thinking ahead to create seasonal specials


51:15 Stephanie’s realization that there is a market for private yoga


52:00 The joy Shannon has found working with clients one-on-one


52:55 Shannon sets up Stephanie’s first steps for advertising and guidance with growing her private yoga business


56:00 Shannon’s key takeaways:


  1. Teaching one-one is easier than teaching to a group
  2. Feedback and modifications happen easily when teaching one-on-one
  3. Work one-on-one with a yoga mentor so that you have experience as the student
  4. Bring a waiver form
  5. Ask questions:


Do they have any conditions? How does it affect them (symptoms)

Their stress levels- at work and at home

Pain levels on a scale from 1-10

Ask clients to do some movements to assess


Make sure to have a notepad


  1. Consider yourself part of a health-care team (work in your scope of practice) and create a list so you are able to refer your client to specialists
  2. Empower your client to create yoga goals
  3. Consider your prices and the possibility of offering packages
  4. Location- in your space or your client’s or somewhere else
  5. Marketing and advertising through social media, websites and more
  6. Create your private yoga schedule
  7. Consider niching down to provide specialized services


Pick one actionable item and share with Shannon. It can be something from the list or something else that works for you.




Group Program for Yoga Teachers


Shannon on Instagram


The Connected Yoga Teacher Editable Student Waiver Form


The Connected Teacher Facebook Group


Follow The Connected Teacher on YouTube


Book a Consultation Call with Shannon


Yoga for Pelvic Health Teacher Training September 22nd and 23rd, 2018


Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity

Sep 3, 2018

080: Yoga and Endometriosis [Part 2] with Dustienne Miller


In part 2 of our 2-part series on endometriosis, Shannon asked yoga teacher and physical therapist Dustienne Miller to share her knowledge and experience working with clients with this chronic illness.


Dustienne feels strongly endometriosis is underdiagnosed and that there is much more to be understood in this area of women’s health. It is now recognized that 1 in 10 women struggle with this chronic illness. Dustienne also wants all women to trust their intuition when determining the severity of their pain and to know that period pain should never be debilitating.


Dustienne began studying to become a physiotherapist in 1994 and began practicing yoga while doing musical theater in New York City as a way to warm up. She continued practicing yoga at home and decided to pursue yoga teacher training at Kripalu. Dustienne came to realize as a yoga teacher and a physiotherapist specializing in pelvic health, that these disciplines complemented each other beautifully. She began to integrate yoga into physical therapy home programs and saw the difference yoga made to her clients suffering from endometriosis.  


Dustienne details for us how pranayama and asana can ease the symptoms of endometriosis. She describes the connection between pranayama and the pelvic floor and her way of leading clients through asana in a progressive fashion to minimize overextending themselves.

6:20 Dustienne’s yoga and physical therapy journey


8:50 Dustienne describes endometriosis


10:40 Symptoms of endometriosis


12:20 What Dustienne has heard from her clients suffering from endometriosis


13:20 Are the endo flare-ups in sync with the menstrual cycle?

15:40 Pain management- the importance of teaching strategies in order to allow sufferers to have ownership over managing the flares


How yoga can benefit those with endometriosis:


16:25 Pranayama- a daily practice can help with the prominence of the parasympathetic nervous system to be more dominant which can lessen the pain


17:30 Relationship between pranayama and the pelvic floor and the importance of lengthening the spine to optimize the pranayama-pelvic floor connection


20:55 Asana- a gentle yoga program can mobilize the tissues and the muscles that are attaching to both the pelvis and the thorax

22:15 Yoga poses to approach with caution extensions and cause rebound pain


24:40 Is there a pain level where one should avoid asana and Dustienne’s hope that students will feel that for themselves


27:40 The benefit of child’s pose, goddess pose, banana pose, standing half-moon, supine twist (to help with rotation through the spine) and their variations


32:55 Dustienne’s love for restorative yoga, that it is “real” yoga


33:55 Additional advice from Dustienne and on reconditioning the body to have a different response to pain to help lessen it (softening the belly, table pose letting belly hang)


36:05 Other treatments Dustienne recommends for endometriosis


38:20 How endometriosis can be diagnosed and how treatment options are evolving as research into this illness expands


40:25 Misconceptions around endometriosis, how raising awareness is helping e.g. through social media campaign #1in10


42:10 Importance of listening to intuition- don’t push yourself


42:55 Shannon’s closing thoughts and wrap-up and on “curating your team”



Dustienne’s summary page of resources


Dustienne’s website: Your Pace Yoga

Related TCYT Episodes:


079: Yoga and Endometriosis [Part 1] with Kimberly Castello


007: Breath and Pelvic Health with Trista Zinn


008: Core Breath and Pelvic Health with Kim Vopni


009: Kegels, Mula Bandha, and Pelvic Health with Shelly Prosko


033: A New Perspective on Diastasis Recti with Sinead Dufour


073: The 8 Limbs of Yoga [Part 1] with Shannon Crow


074: The 8 Limbs of Yoga [Part 2] with Jennie Lee




Yoga for Pelvic Health Teacher Training September 22nd and 23rd, 2018

Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity

Aug 27, 2018

079: Yoga and Endometriosis with Kimberly Castello [Part 1]


In part 1 of a 2-part series on endometriosis, we welcome Kimberly Castello, a certified Yoga Therapist who completed her Clinical Internship with the Simms Mann Venice Family Clinic in Los Angeles, California. Kimberly specializes in developing chronic pain management programs for individuals, hospitals, and clinics.


Kimberly tried yoga when a friend recommended it to her, knowing that as a dancer she had a love for movement. She shares that she fell in love with yoga as soon as she hit the mat and soon after pursued yoga teacher training. Her curiosity and devotion to yoga have only grown stronger and her passion for teaching has been enhanced through her life experiences.


At the age of 27, Kimberly fell ill, finding herself plagued by fatigue. She also had bladder issues and persistent pelvic pain.  Kimberly describes how she and the many doctors she saw were stumped by her symptoms. Eventually, asking to be tested for mononucleosis (with the results coming back positive), she believed that to be the answer to her mysterious symptoms. Nonetheless, the severity of her symptoms continued and worsened.  Kimberly describes the grueling process that eventually led to being diagnosed with Endometriosis many years later.


Kimberly generously shares her experience in order to bring awareness and validate other women’s experience with this crippling disorder. Endometriosis has been long been overlooked and is far more common than was believed. There has been very little research done in this area of women’s health, with doctors writing the symptoms off as menstrual pain with the attitude of “suck it up”. Kimberly defines the condition, how it is a lifelong struggle and her approach to managing what she describes as an autoimmune disease. She also openly shares the grief, depression, and isolation she encountered while coping with the diagnosis that shifted the course of her life.

6:20 Shannon defines endometriosis


8:30 Kimberly’s yoga journey


10:00 Kimberley’s mysterious illness


16:50 Kimberley’s surgery for endometriosis and her decision to pass on medication that would have put her into early menopause


18:00 The connection between mononucleosis and endometriosis and how endometriosis is an autoimmune disease


19:10 How Kimberley defines endometriosis and the symptoms that accompany the condition


21:50 The lack of education around endometriosis and developments in this area


23:15 Kimberley’s long road to being diagnosed with endometriosis


25:10 How endometriosis feels


27:25 Kimberley describes some symptoms she experienced and how it can begin and progress differently in every woman


30:00 Kimberley’s experience with weight gain as a symptom of endometriosis and her struggle to accept this change in her body


31:25 Accepting that this systemic illness would affect her for the rest of her life and that she’d have to “work 10 times harder than the average person works to do the simplest things” and the struggle to process the grief


32:45 How Kimberley is coping with the illness now and what has she found helpful in managing the disorder e.g. diet, focusing on what she can do rather than what she can’t do, managing her expectations


37:35 The importance of practicing restorative yoga


38:50 Kimberly’s choice to share her story


40:20 Helping herself and others find acceptance that their life won’t look the way they imagined


41:55 Kimberly on finding acceptance, patience, and kindness for herself through yoga


43:55 Kimberly’s advice on coping for those who have been newly diagnosed


46:00 Suggested poses and breathing practices for symptom relief

  1. Legs on a chair (restorative pose)
  2. Therapeutic Pranayama (going with natural breath)
  3. Reclined Butterfly (restorative and supported)


49:10 “What can you do to give yourself what you need in the moment?” How this advice to her students has begun to spill over into Kimberly’s life and how it applies to those with endometriosis


52:20 Kimberly explains “endo belly”


54:40 Kimberly’s decision to wean herself off medications (under the guidance of a doctor) and eating, breath work and yoga for her body and the importance of taking time to rest when she’s tired


59:25 Can restorative yoga help to prevent inflammation when brought on by stress and the benefit of “self-talk”


1:02:50 Keeping things in balance- in life and in our yoga practice


1:04:00 What services Kimberly offers and her philosophy of “meeting people where they are”


1:06:00 Shannon’s wrap-up and key takeaways




Kimberly’s Email:


Kimberly’s Website: Kimberly Castello Yoga


Kimberly Castello Yoga on Facebook


The Connected Teacher Facebook Group


Follow The Connected Teacher on Youtube


Book a Consultation Call with Shannon


Yoga for Pelvic Health Teacher Training September 22nd and 23rd, 2018


Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity

Aug 20, 2018

078: Creating an Online Studio with Brea Johnson


Brea Johnson has over 16 years of yoga teaching under her belt and has recently ventured into the world of online teaching. Finding herself tired of the class grind she refined what and how she teaches and in doing, so she was able to define her niche. In shifting her focus, she also found herself turning to a more sustainable approach to yoga by bringing in movement education and research to enhance her yoga teaching. This approach has attracted an international audience which inspired Brea to offer online classes and teacher trainings.


With an open and authentic spirit, Brea shares her experience with creating and offering online content. She shares how teaching in this format works for her lifestyle and how she loves being able to dive deeper into teaching and being able to cover more details through her online offerings that she isn’t able to cover in her weekly class.


There are, of course, many challenges. Shannon also shares her experience with her online offerings and dispels the myth that online teaching can provide a comfortable passive income when it is, in fact, an ongoing process.


Brea and Shannon also discuss online platforms to host your videos, equipment suggestions, and Brea’s method of offering online memberships. An episode filled with great advice, Brea sums it up best: “The first step is to be bold enough to put yourself out there.”

5:30 What moved Brea to teach online


7:20 What led Brea to define her niche and her “ yoga existential crisis”


11:20 What Brea found the most challenging aspect of offering online classes


12:40 How Brea’s online class membership works; library of classes, filters to help students find a class that works for them e.g. focused on a certain area of the body, energy level


15:50 On how she found the perfect time to shift her focus


17:00 How often Brea adds new classes to her online collection


19:15 The choice to hire professionals to film DIY and Brea’s experience filming the classes herself and equipment she uses


21:00 Brea’s suggestion on choosing a wireless mic


24:00 Other video making advice; the camera, lighting, shooting the video


30:10 Brea’s editing process and the editing program she uses


31:35 Brea’s approach to keeping in touch with her clients and offering classes and on her choice to teach without notes


32:55 Which platform Brea uses to host her classes online


35:35 Brea’s online YTT offering and the importance of teaching movement teacher trainings


42:35 On Brea’s rebellious nature


43:20 Shannon and Brea discuss the accessibility of online classes and trainings such as reaching an international audience, and focusing on “How can I provide online classes?” rather than simply “Can it be done?”


46:15 How to reach Brea and access her free content and how pleased she is when those access her free online content


48:30 The importance of seeing a diversity of ages in our yoga teachers in online content


53:05 Shannon’s final thoughts and her experience putting herself out there online, feeling vulnerable, and her advice to you if you’re thinking of offering online courses




Email Brea:


Brea’s Website: Heart and Bones Yoga


Hearts and Bones Yoga on Instagram


Hearts and Bones on Facebook


Shannon's Facebook Live Video


The Connected Teacher Facebook Group


Follow The Connected Teacher on YouTube


Book a Consultation Call with Shannon


Yoga for Pelvic Health Teacher Training September 22nd and 23rd, 2018

Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity

Aug 13, 2018

077: Interstitial Cystitis (Painful Bladder Syndrome) with Helena Spears


Shannon met Helena Spears through a discussion in The Connected Yoga Teacher Facebook group about interstitial cystitis.


Upon graduating from her 200-hour yoga teacher training, Helena turned her focus towards teaching chronic pain informed yoga as well as yoga for pelvic health. Shannon asked Helena on as a guest to share her first-hand experience with interstitial cystitis and persistent pain and the many benefits of practicing yoga in regard to pain management.


As a teen, Helena was diagnosed with Interstitial Cystitis (IC) and in her 20s, through a cliff jumping incident, she developed chronic back pain. The back pain evolved into Fibromyalgia and Ankylosing Spondylitis (an inflammatory arthritis that attacks the spine).


Helena describes how she turned to yoga for chronic pain management but soon found the benefits were limited within the confines of a traditional yoga practice. She shares this experience and her perseverance in pursuing her own yoga path on her website:


“It was in my early 30s that I discovered how powerful yoga can be in managing pain; the emotional, spiritual and physical. I decided to pursue my yoga teacher training out of frustration and curiosity. I was frustrated that “regular” yoga practice seemed to flare my Fibromyalgia, yet I knew that yoga could be the key to helping heal my overactive nervous system and dialing down my pain. Since completing my yoga teacher training, my practice has deepened in a way I never thought possible. The emotional healing and guidance I have received from studying sutras and yogic philosophy inform my life and practice every day. Through meditation, I have learned to tap into the calm part of my soul, pranayama allows me to quickly tap into that inner calm”


Helena candidly shares her experience with Interstitial Cystitis, the anger she encountered while coping with her persistent pain, the importance she places on the mind/body connection, and the sutras that are guiding her along her journey.

7:30 Helena’s yoga journey


10:40 Helena describes her chronic pain


12:30 The definition of Interstitial Cystitis (from the IC Network website)


13:25 5 different types of IC (listed in The Connected Yoga Teacher Interstitial Cystitis (Painful Bladder Syndrome) PDF)


16:35 No one-size-fits-all treatment for IC


17:30 Helena’s take on the term “Painful Bladder Syndrome” as an alternative to Interstitial Cystitis


18:55 Helena’s IC symptoms


19:45 Helena’s experience with the mind/body connection in relation to persistent pain


21:35 The benefit of yoga in nurturing Helena’s mind/body relationship and the activities Helena has given up due to pain and stress


25:35 Helena’s yoga practice


27:05 The benefits Helena has found using Muse headbands


32:50 Helena’s interest in pursuing Yoga for Pelvic Health and taking Pain Care Yoga- Teacher Training and Learning with Tianne


34:40 How Helena wants to empower her yoga students and how she’s always learning as a teacher


36:30 How Helena feels the spiritual aspect of yoga, such as the Yoga Sutra has helped her cope with chronic pain- Ahimsa (compassion for self) and Aparigraha (non-attachment) and Brahmacharya (dedication to practice) are guiding principles in her life


39:55 Anger and chronic pain- how Helena identified and worked on her anger and the importance of acceptance


42:25 What Helena would say to someone suffering from persistent pain


45:30 Helena’s concern for men who feel like they can’t convey their pain which is toxic for pain management


46:00 The emotional component of persistent pain and the importance of treating the mind, body and soul


48:35 How best to reach Helena



To enter to win a Muse Headband leave a comment below these shownotes :)


Helena’s Website: Helena Spears Yoga


The Pelvic Health Podcast


PDF: Interstitial Cystitis (Painful Bladder Syndrome)


Website: The IC Network


Definition of Interstitial Cystitis on The IC Network website:


“An unpleasant sensation (pain, pressure, discomfort) perceived to be related to the urinary bladder, associated with lower urinary tract symptoms of more than six weeks duration, in the absence of infection or other identifiable causes.”


Shelly Prosko’s Website: Physio Yoga


Pain Care Yoga- Teacher Training and Learning with Tianne


The 10 Step Approach to Living with Pain Webinar (scroll down the page a bit to see video and links to handouts)


Book: When The Body Says No by Gabor Maté (chapter 1 available for no charge)


The Connected Teacher Facebook Group


Follow The Connected Teacher on Youtube


Book a Consultation Call with Shannon


Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity

Aug 6, 2018

076: Designing A Yoga Teacher Training with Rachel Scott


Think back to your first 200-hour yoga teacher training. What was it like? Did it fit your learning style? What do you wish was included? If you’ve given these questions some thought perhaps designing and teaching yoga teacher training is a path for you.


Shannon came across Rachel Scott in a serendipitous-like fashion. Rachel had shared photos on the Pixabay (a free image-sharing site), and Shannon used one for her online 5-Day Content Creation Challenge. Noticing that Rachel was a yoga teacher, Shannon clicked on the link to Rachel’s site. Discovering that Rachel did consultation work with yoga teachers interested in designing their own YTT, (a topic Shannon wanted to cover on the show), Shannon took the opportunity to invite Rachel on the podcast as a guest.


Rachel is an educational designer and teacher whose mission is to support yoga teachers and studios to create their own excellently crafted and delivered teacher trainings. She has worked in education for nearly twenty years and led the Teachers College at one of Canada’s largest yoga studios for more than seven. The author of two yoga books, she hosts an award-winning blog and has contributed to several publications. Rachel has a BA from Columbia University, Masters of Science in Instructional Design and Learning Technology. She describes herself as “part nerd, part creative artist”, believing in elevating strengths, laughing out loud, and taking a few deep breaths.


With warmth and wisdom, Shannon and Rachel discuss the pros and cons of designing a yoga teacher course, how to determine if this path is right for you, teaching and planning strategies and much more.


As always, please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below. What would you like to see included in a yoga teacher training? Have you given thought to teaching one?

11:30 How Rachel become interested in helping yoga teachers create their own yoga YTT and her process of becoming a consultant


17:45 Rachel’s perspective on creating online yoga content with good intentions (versus income-focused)


19:05 Rachel’s approach to guiding teachers through designing a YTT


22:00 How do yoga teachers know if they’re ready to create a yoga teacher training, the qualities of a good teacher and defining where strengths and interest lies


26:00 How to test the waters to help you decide if you would like to teach a YTT and considering training for becoming a good teacher


28:05 “One of the reasons to teach is to learn” -don’t feel pressured to go into teaching “knowing all”


30:00 Helping students learn versus telling students what you know and Rachel’s first time leading a YTT and learning the significance of this “creating an environment where people can make mistakes” a practice and actively learning instead of students sitting and listening


33:10 Is there a downside of designing a YTT and pitfalls to avoid


36:35 Considerations to help you determine what to charge for your YTT


41:20 How much content can students manage to process in a day and strategies that can help


44:40 Rachel’s thoughts on improving YTTs she has attended- finding a way to give feedback to students, some form of accountability, clarity in what students will learn from a course


49:10 The services Rachel provides and how to work with her


53:15 Shannon’s wrap up and final thoughts on offering yoga teacher trainings



Contact Rachel for a free 15-minute consultation call:


Rachel’s email:


Rachel’s Website: Rachel Yoga


Rachel on Facebook


Rachel on Instagram


The Connected Teacher Facebook Group


Follow The Connected Teacher on YouTube


Book a Consultation Call with Shannon


The Connected Yoga Teacher 5-Day Content Creation Challenge


Relevant TCYT Episodes:


052: Create Your Online Course with Janelle Allen


061: Too Many Yoga Teachers with Kimma Stark

Gratitude to our Sponsor Schedulicity