My journey into yoga began about six years ago when I took my first hot yoga class. My past is from an athletic background where I competed in many different sports, focusing on tennis where I played professionally and on a full tennis scholarship at University of San Diego. This led to many serious injuries and a life of living in constant pain. I was encouraged to try hot yoga, which I did. Slowly, I started to see dramatic changes. I noticed that my pain had decreased and I was getting stronger and more flexible. At this point, I was still very focused on the physical benefits of yoga.
However, there was a turning point for me, where it became more than just a "physical practice" for me. Going through the most difficult period of my life, I finally experienced the mental and spiritual side of yoga. I found that through yoga I became more grounded, calmer and more focused. I became drawn to the practice for my mind, my spirit, my being. It allowed me to live in the present and I became a happier, more committed and centered person.
It was THEN that I realized I must sign up for a Baron Baptiste Teacher Training. I decided that I had to share this passion, this LOVE with others. I wanted others to feel and experience what had changed my life. This is when I knew that I must open up my own studio. I wanted to create a place where everyone and anyone feels welcome, comfortable and loved. Living in such a busy, fast paced world, I wanted to create a place where everyone can walk out feeling more grounded, positive and confident. I wanted to create a place where others could open their hearts, their bodies, their minds.
My dream has now come true with the opening of PURE.
Yoga has had such a profound, positive effect on my life that I feel so blessed to be able to share this gift with others. I hope to inspire and challenge every person that steps into PURE just as you will me.
Each and every time I step on my mat a world is opened into a deeper understanding I couldn’t have fathomed before. Yoga has been an immense journey into my self. Originally, when I had started practicing I was excited to be a part of something so exotic and new. I came to each class thirsty to learn more about a teaching that I seemed to instinctively understand already on some deeper level. I quickly progressed deeper into a very physical practice (with Bikrim yoga) which lead me to understand the enormous gift of my body being so receptive to new challenges.
I travelled through South East Asia in my early 20’s and decided to settle in Taiwan, teaching English. My busy mind giving no freedom of silence I found that although my experiences were exciting and new, there was a lingering notion that there had to be a better way.
Returning back to Canada after a year and a half abroad, I again began to practice yoga physically. I hadn’t yet realized that yoga is a UNION of mind, body and soul. I threw myself into many different career paths, destined to find the perfect fit for my wondering spirit.
With much support and guidance of close friends and mentors I decided to enter into a 7 month teacher training in the Yoga Works program. I can’t express the immense gratitude I will always have to my guides along the way. Each practice cracked the foundation of so many things I had let harden on the surface of my being. Every time I broke through another layer I discovered a world of uncharted inner landscapes. It quickly became apparent as I finished the program and began to teach, that I was indeed learning even more from each new class and each new soul coming to share in a practice.
As I sit now, about to begin my second training, having taught more than a couple hundred classes I am still constantly in awe of the wonders of the human body, mind and spirit. I am honored to now be called a mother and indeed my two little girls have become my biggest yogi teachers in this earth school! I continue to unravel, to open, and become new.
Above all else ~I teach to learn as I learn to teach~
Being a runner and passionately active person I first came to yoga, as many do, with an interest to explore this new and popular ‘workout’. Wow was I ever fooled. It didn’t take long for me to discover that the physical postures of yoga is only a pathway to the many layers and precious gifts this ancient practice has to offer. There was not a doubt in my mind that one day I wanted to be able to share the love and joy of yoga to anyone willing to try. March 2012 I completed my Kripalu 200 hours Yoga Teacher Training Lennox, Massachusetts. As a teacher I hope to offer a space where individuals can comfortably discover self compassion and awareness by invigorating the physical body. Through these discoveries comes gratitude of all that is around us; nature spirits and sacred beings. I am forever thankful for the naive curiosity which brought me to the one of the greatest gifts of my life; yoga.
After taking my first hot yoga class in Calgary in 2007 I knew that there was something a bit magical about this thing called hot yoga. As a dancer growing up, I had found another form of movement in yoga which lit up my soul. One of the amazing things about yoga is that you are constantly learning every time you show up on your mat …. learning how and when to truly listen to your body … learning when your ego gets in your way … learning how your life shows up on your mat … learning to let go …
With my love and passion for yoga I have taken local teacher trainings here in Calgary, and have also trained with Baron Baptiste at his level 1 and level 2 teacher trainings. I am already excited for my next yoga adventure!!
Yoga is truly a gift and I encourage everyone to come to class and onto their mat with an open heart and mind. “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes” – Marcel Proust. As teachers we are constantly inspired by our students … creating new ways on their mat … so thank you all and can’t wait to see you shine …
PEACE and LOVE.
“Awareness changes how we physically move. As we become more fluid and resilient so do the mental, emotional and spiritual movements of our lives.”
My journey, thus far, through life has always involved some form of movement. As a dancer since the age of 8, I have focused a great amount of energy and passion towards moving my body in different ways. Tap, Jazz, Ballet, Lyrical, Hip hop, Modern… you name it, this was my form of art, expression and movement. At the age of 16, as well as dancing competitively, I began teaching my very own Jazz and Tap classes. It was then that I realized not only did I have a passion for Dance but I also wanted to share it with others. Teaching and choreographing dance has become an integral part of my life.
In 2003 I began practicing yoga, simply to improve my flexibility and help with dance injuries. Little did I know that there was so much more to it… It was through yoga that I found I could connect my body, mind, and soul, physically and mentally grounding myself more than I ever could in a dance class. I began to practice for the physical benefits and now I can't live without the mental side. I wanted to learn as much as I could and share it with my students. Following my love of teaching, I completed my Yoga Teacher Training course at Yoga Passage with Tracy Mann, Lerrita Rubinoff, and Tanis Fishman. This has since only become the beginning of my personal journey through yoga, a journey that is leading me towards learning more about anatomy, nutrition and natural health practices and I look forward to continued growth and movement!
Nothing happens until something moves.
JoJo brings a rich past to her yoga practice. A registered nurse by day, she has worked in Oncology since 1984. She was instrumental in bringing the healing and health benefits of humour therapy to the Calgary Health Region in the early 1990’s and has endeavoured to incorporate it in her nursing care daily since then. In 2000 JoJo did her first yoga class and found in the practice of yoga a grounding energy to not only sustain her demanding nursing career but also allow her to thrive and grow as a human being. She has trained with Baron Baptiste, taught Bikram yoga and is excited to do Yin training to expand her knowledge and abilities as a teacher. Students in JoJo’s classes are sure to feel the profound love, care and joy she brings to her teaching.
“There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and heart are my temples—my philosophy is kindness.” - Dalai Lama
My yoga journey began eight years ago during my time as a competitive distance runner. At first yoga for me was something physical; a time where I could stretch my body to remove physical tension from hours of hard training. It wasn’t until after a severe running injury where yoga revealed its true magic. The injury prevented me from running, but also allowed me to sled more time on my yoga mat. Yoga became a time for me to let go not only physical tension, but also mental and emotional tension that I had been dormant in my muscles and in my mind. It was there I realized that no injury can keep you from practicing yoga, as yoga goes beyond the physical. It only requires you to breathe and be truly present in your body; as long as you can breath you can do yoga!
The magic I felt through my practice sparked my interest in eastern philosophy, spirituality and religion. In May 2010 I completed my BA degree in religious studies, and in November traveled to Rishikesh, India, where I completed my second yoga training with Yogi Vishvaketu. The more I learn about yoga, the more I realize the true depth of its teachings and the seemingly endless benefits it has on the mind, body and spirit.
Because of my athletic background and passion for yoga, I love helping athletes in their athletic endeavours, as well as helping them find a balance in their everyday life. After my first yoga training, I was fortunate to work with worked with Hockey Canada’s Goaltenders, the Canadian National Speed Skating Team, University of Calgary Track and Field athletes as well as children’s swim teams. I am also very passionate in working with youth, and I have had the opportunity to teach yoga to Jr. and Sr. High school phys-ed programs across Calgary.
Whether you are an athlete or not, young or old, I hope that through a physical practice I can guide you towards the magic of yoga that extends beyond a forward fold, a downward dog, and even beyond the rubber mat. I hope to see you in class, Namaste!
Why did I start yoga?! I began practicing a few years ago for the great workout and
the sweat aspect. I started to notice how it supplemented my other sport training
by promoting flexibility and body awareness. I now practice to find balance and to
ground myself…the workout is a bonus. Life gets busy and it is easy to get caught up in
the constant hustle. I find yoga brings me back. It allows you to put everything aside
and realize “in this moment nothing else matters”. That feeling of serenity in the final
savasana brings the simplicity of life back into perspective. I took my teacher training
with Ally Bogard through Gaiatri in Calgary, and it was the first step to realizing I wanted
to help other people share in this experience. I understand that everyone has different
motivation, goals or levels, and encourage you to bring whatever that is to the mat.
So come down, have some fun, de-stress, count sweat drops in "frog", join in singing
happy birthday to your fellow yogis while holding your wheel, give your camel a name
and laugh (or don't) at the occasional I think I'm funny jokes!!
“Live life fully while you're here. Experience everything. Take care of yourself and your
friends. Have fun, be crazy, be weird. Go out and screw up! You're going to anyway,
so you might as well enjoy the process. Take the opportunity to learn from your
mistakes: find the cause of your problem and eliminate it. Don't try to be perfect; just
be an excellent example of being human."~Anthony Robbins
Nathalie was a professional dancer for many years. She trained in Montreal with les Grands Ballets Candiens and danced and sang with the north American touring production of 'The Phantom of the Opera' for five years.
The relentless physical and mental strain of constant touring with a professional North American dance troupe taught Nathalie the importance of creating and maintaining a strong body core as well as flexibility and resilience.
After retiring from dancing, her love for movement led her to study postural and core strengthening techniques in Montreal. She moved to Alberta in 1996, where she founded The Fitness Table Calgary studio, which is still transforming lives today.
Nathalie sold the studio in 2003 to look after her young family.
It was then that her beautiful journey with Yoga began. Searching for something that would challenge her physically, and satisfy her love of studying movement, she discovered and fell in love with Yoga.
This new journey has been a gift to Nathalie, allowing her to stay strong and flexible in her body as well as providing the opportunity to share the intuitive wisdom of her heart. Nathalie has a unique and profound ability to recognize where students hold resistance and tightness in their physical and emotional bodies and guide them gently through a release. She has been blessed to teach Yoga to adults as well as children.
Nathalie is excited about teaching at Pure Hot Yoga. She looks forward to connecting with and guiding her students as well and inspiring and empowering each individual to pursue their own unique Yoga journey.
My journey to Canada from South Africa, almost 10 years ago, opened my life to yoga. The benefits... physically, mentally and spiritually... always attracted me. Even though my practice was initially casual I always seemed to yearn for a class at times when life was hardest. More recently I have found sanctuary where ever I lay my mat and my regular practice has helped me find "home" in my breath. As a teacher, I am very excited to guide you through your practice and share a room, energized by flow and connected by breath. Namaste
Lauren Csada (Aquarius)
I fell in love with yoga after my very first class. I remember everything about it. The Studio, teacher, where i stood in the class. I especially remember the yogi high after class, which made me eager for my next class.
I have been practicing yoga over the past 3 years and just recently graduated from teacher training. I look forward to taking the Baron Baptiste training in 2011. The great thing about yoga is anyone can do it anywhere. I always have my yoga mat in my car, backpack, or suitcase just in case i need a freedom or calmness fix that yoga brings to me.
Yoga has helped me physically recover from repetitive strain i got from my work as an ultrasound technologist, as well as chronic neck and back pain that nothing else could help. It has also improved my circulation. My feet use to turn purple from standing. It is truly amazing when the entire class becomes a full meditation.
I look forward to growing as a teacher and passing on all the great benefits that I have been blessed to discover with the help of yoga.
Come discover your inner self.
I have always been very active playing and coaching every sport imaginable and working out in the gym was my ultimate exercise. Then after a couple of years sabbatical from hot yoga due to a knee surgery I stepped back into a studio and an amazing transformation began.
Years of competitive sport has taken its toll on my body and especially my knee. After several surgeries, casts, pins and months without being able to use my knee it finally has come to a point where it needs replacing. I am too young for a knee replacement so I needed to find something that strengthened and increased the mobility of my knee. The stretching and strengthening within the various poses of Hot Yoga has helped with the tightness and imbalanced musculature that my knee presents to me.
The physical effects are on ly one of the benefits Hot Yoga has given to me. Not being able to play volleyball, fastball or run is really hard on you when you absolutely love to compete. My practice brought an emotional calming over me and has given me a new outlook on life and sport. Hot Yoga makes you look deep within yourself and find what makes you tick. It brings out the most amazing you; physically, mentally and emotionally.
I feel so happy and blessed to have found Hot Yoga and to be able to teach it now. So come in, leave the stresses of your day outside the studio and join me on my journey with Hot Yoga to PURE health, PURE happiness and PURE love of myself and others.
I had always been a person who couldn't wait to get on to the next thing in my life. My patience level was pretty much nil and I was in perpetual motion from morning to night seeking a form of solace yet never finding it.
It was suggested that I try Hot yoga. My first few sessions were SO not mel I was impatient with my body, impatient with my teacher, impatient with yoga in every way, but the instistence of the original suggestion, I perservered, determined to "get a handle" on this thing called yoga...
Previous exrecise options to me were "no pain, no gain", sweat, more pain, build muscle and force more into that hour workout - yoga was NOT user friendly to my ego.
Eventually persistence paid off and suddenly I craved the gentleness of yoga; physically, mentally and spiritually. My muscles craving the stretching, and more importantly my "soul" being awakened to feelings of calmness, peace and acceptance. Krishnamacharya said, "The seed of yoga comes up differently in each person." The seed had taken root.
Suddenly I had a burning desire to know more. I committed to a teacher Traning course, little did I realize this would change my life. My competitive spirit was being challenged through my ego, my body was being challenged physically but without harm, and more importantly learing acceptance of my limitations created acceptance of who I am.
I remember a particular yoga class, this particular teacher inspired me to look within and seek my own truth. I have since learned that my body is a gift to be treasured and protected. My journey had to involve sharing this gift of yoga as there is so much joy in sharing with those who doubt themselves and by instilling the belief that they too can achieve the intended goal that is right for them.
Yoga has made me such a better person. I am grateful daily that in this moment, in this life, I am able to live my purpose and and able to connect with so many precious souls who perhaps I will inspire and who no doubt will inspire me.
Athleticism has been an intricate part of my life since I was a little girl. From swimming to gymnastics to skiing, I immersed myself in sports at a young age and always had a passion for competition. It was this passion with sport that helped me later in life become a three-time Canadian tennis champion at home while traveling internationally as a member of the Canadian team., playing tournaments on eery continent, including the Junior US Open and the French Open. I capped my tennis career by playing for University of San Diego on a full tennis scholarship. My love for the game of tennis, competing and sport in general is thoroughly embedded in my soul.
With the competitive tennis chapter of my life closed, I turned my attention to another passion of mine: my love for children. I had always wanted to work with children and my particular background in sport gave me a unique perspective on the dynamics of a child's physical development. For a number of years, I put my experience to use through programs offered through both Gymtastics, and later with my own company, Headstart, offering an introductory program for young children to both gymnastics and tennis.
Today, as a tennis coach and a certified AFLCA (Alberta Fitness Leadership Certification Association) trainer with a designation in Mind Body Fusion, I am a true believer that everyone, young and old, can benefit from practicing yoga. For children, these benefits start early as they learn to stretch correctly, keeping their bodies limber and flexible, while helping to avoid injury. It would be my honour to be a part of your child's path towards a lifetime of good health, flexibility, and physical fitness!