Teacher Spotlight | Radiant Hot Yoga blog

Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga’s inspiring teachers, Ashley D.

When and why did you begin practicing yoga?

I began practicing hot yoga in 2006. Yoga has had a profound impact on my life by providing me with a deeper understanding and appreciation for one’s self and others. Although my practice started because of the physical benefits, today I practice daily for the inner work out, to connect to myself and release everyday stresses.” – Ashley D.

What made you fall in love with Radiant Hot Yoga?

I love Radiant! And for so many reasons!! The heat, the teachers, the people, the entire community of yogis are friendly and supportive. I enjoy the experience of each class being different and challenging, yet somehow exactly what I need for that day. It is the highlight of my day!” – Ashley D.

RHY teacher of February 2017 - Ashley D.

How has teaching yoga changed your life?

Teaching has been one of the best gifts in my life! To have the opportunity to teach, connect, and motivate while living my passion is a dream come true. Teaching is the best – it has enriched and enhanced my life tremendously. I am incredibly humbled and grateful to be be a part of Radiant and the amazing community.” – Ashley D.

When did you know you wanted to become a teacher at Radiant Hot Yoga?

I’ve always been a people person, and as long as I can remember have found myself wanting to positively impact and support others. I watched Teacher Training come and go for years- it always pulled on my heart, but I was too busy and committed to work to participate until I made the decision in 2016 to to commit to Teacher Training “no matter what”.” – Ashley D.

RHY teacher of February 2017 - Ashley D.

What did Teacher Training mean to you and how did it change your life?

It was truly an extraordinary experience, physically, mentally, socially and spiritually. 8-weeks and 200 hours of intense training not only learning so much about yoga, the niyamas, and yamas, and the body but also a deeper understanding of the self. I am so grateful to have been part of the  teacher training and created so many strong bonds and memories with friends that will last forever.” – Ashley D.

What are a few of your favorite things to do outside of yoga?

Outside of the studio, I spend my time with my husband, dogs, friends, and family. I have a love for the beach, and enjoy being in the water. Music, traveling, and going to new places are some of my favorite experiences.” – Ashley D.

What is one of your most cherished moments since you’ve become a teacher?

There have been many everlasting, and very special moments made in studio since becoming a teacher. I’ll never forget my first class, I was so nervous, and it was a good size class!

Darlene and some dear friends were in the room. As soon as we got into table top something clicked and came over me, it was like an out of body experience- and I was watching myself teach. It was such an amazing feeling and the energy lasted the whole day. At that point, I finally had a instinct feeling that I was doing exactly what I was suppose to be doing in life.” – Ashley D.

If there was one last thing you’d like to share with your radiant students, what would you say?!

“Ego says once everything falls into place, I’ll find peace.” Spirit says, “Find your peace, and everything will fall into place.” – Ashley D.

RHY teacher of February 2017 - Ashley D.

Teen yoga instructor, Skyler Dearen leads peers through their paces

Original article on Daily Pilot

Taking a short break from their leaps and tumbles, the Newport Harbor High School pep squad’s 61 girls laid out mats in a campus gym for some yoga Wednesday afternoon.

Skyler Dearen, 16, was ready to lead the girls through their down dogs and tree poses. But that’s not all — she also had some words of wisdom, motivation and self-love.

Doing yoga, she said, allows one to “consciously let go of the things that no longer serve you.”

Skyler became a certified instructor through the credentialing organization Yoga Alliance at age 13 and taught her first class at 14.

Having received a teaching certification before a driver’s license, she has taught about 20,000 students so far. She currently teaches about 10 classes a week at her mother Darlene’s business, Radiant Hot Yoga in Newport Beach and Irvine.

Skyler attended Corona del Mar High School before switching to online school the past two years to accommodate her yoga teaching schedule.

As her session at Newport Harbor began Wednesday, Skyler had the cheerleaders, song girls and baton team members ease into a pose in which they lay flat on their backs while she set up music and had the lights dimmed.

Her 15-year-old sister, Savanna, who also is certified, helped demonstrate various poses for the students.

“There’s a lot of moving pieces,” said Julie Woodall, an instructor for Radiant Hot Yoga. A session’s tone, music selection, ventilation and lighting are all in the instructor’s hands.

Earlier this week, Newport Harbor pep squad advisor and coach Kris Higman, a longtime friend of Woodall’s, asked if Skyler could lead a class during her students’ summer training camp.

“It’s a chance for them to stretch their bodies, work on core muscles, strength in their arms and legs and balance, but also for them to be positive about their bodies,” Higman said. “Skyler is their same age; she’s going through the same things socially as they are. If she can give them this message of loving yourself, that’s huge.”

Skyler and Savanna received that message when they needed it most.

When Skyler was 6 and Savanna was 5, their mother encouraged them to “heal themselves” through yoga.

The girls’ parents had separated, and later divorced. Skyler and Savanna moved with their mother from Arizona to California about five years ago, Skyler said.

“[Yoga] taught me to accept the moment, that you have a choice of how you want to live your life, whether it’s being unhappy or loving life,” she said. “I can take down those walls. … It’s my choice.”

As the Newport Harbor girls moved through workouts such as push-ups and bridge poses, their young instructor kept her voice upbeat. During relaxed stretches, she spoke softly and slowly.

Toward the end of the class, the squad moved into a sleeping half pigeon pose, in which they lay face down with one leg bent and another stretched out behind them.

“It takes strength to let go,” Skyler said as they sunk deeper into the pose. “It takes bravery and courage.”

For squad member Cassidy Peterson, the session with Skyler was her first yoga class.

“It shows us how to let all the pain and anxiety go,” Cassidy said. “We can take away what’s good and positive and let go of what’s negative.”

As the class neared its end, the girls lay flat on their backs as they did at the beginning. They closed their eyes, and Skyler sealed the practice with some final words.

“We experience struggles, but we experience amazing things as well,” she told them. “That’s part of the journey.”

Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga's inspiring teachers Kelsey Walters

When and why did you begin practicing yoga?

I began my yoga journey at 14 years old in Cabo. We focused on a three part breath for over an hour holding only 5 postures! Shortly after I joined a beginners yoga class at my gym. I grew up wishing I was in a sport, but never participated in one.

The feeling yoga gave me was that euphoric passionate drive and I knew right then this was my “sport”. Yoga opened up my eyes to a whole new world of life. It truly is a part of my soul and I would not be the kind, loving person I am today without my practice, my yoga community, and my teaching.” – Kelsey

Kelsey Walters

How has becoming a teacher changed your life?

Before becoming a teacher I was extremely concerned of what others thought of me. I used to look at the world outside of myself to fill the empty places in my heart, but after becoming a teacher I realized it was up to me to fill those places in my heart. I now can say with confidence that I am fully embracing the woman I am, huge personality and all. I realized how serious I was taking life and now I have chosen to try my best to embrace this life to the fullest.” – Kelsey

When did you know you wanted to be a yoga instructor?

I knew I wanted to become a teacher in 2010, but I was in nursing school and couldn’t take the time out of school to train. Two days after I graduated nursing school I jumped right into Darlene’s yoga Teacher Training.

The reason I wanted to become a teacher is because I tend to reflect on my life a fair amount and found that love is the basis of everything. From the bottom of my heart, my drive is to just make people feel loved, have a better day and walk out of the room feeling like they have a clear vision.” – Kelsey

Kelsey Walters

What did Teacher Training mean to you and what did it do for you?

Teacher training takes you out of your comfort zone. It breaks down walls and barriers within yourself and you have to just persist through the discomfort to get to the other side of it. I am truly so blessed to have been pushed the way I was during training and post training. It was physically and emotionally intense at times.

Once I completed it, it was like HOLY SMOKES! I just did that?! Teacher training shows you that your mind may play tricks and say you can’t do it, but the truth is we are far more powerful than we ever could think. We just have to have faith that we can achieve anything we put our mind to.” – Kelsey

Kelsey Walters

What do you feel is the personality and energy you bring to your classes?

I feel that I bring spirituality, humor, and love to my classes. I want my yogis to feel nothing but love and that there is no judgement in the room. Sometimes the classes can be a challenge and when you find the faith in yourself and tap into that highest form of yourself you can feel pure bliss even in the challenging class.

I also like to laugh, A LOT. So in my classes I want my students to feel connected to everyone in the room and to laugh a little bit.. take the seriousness out of their heads to make room for encouragement.” – Kelsey

What are a few of your favorite things to do outside of yoga?

Some of my favorite things to do outside of yoga is running, weightlifting, getting crafty with jewelry/house decorations and my RN job! I love to cook as well, I am a bit of a foodie :).” – Kelsey

Kelsey Walters

Kelsey’s Teaching Schedule

Newport Beach studio

  • Tuesdays and Fridays at 6:00 am
  • Tuesdays and Thursdays at 4:00 pm
  • Sundays at 5:30 pm

Irvine studio

  • Wednesdays at 6:00 am

Sign up for her classes

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Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga's inspiring teachers Skyler Dearen

When and why did you begin practicing yoga?

It’s an amazing feeling to give yourself moments of undivided attention and to truly connect. Ever since my first class I have been on the journey of healing. Yoga has healed me from my past. I started practicing yoga in 2006 and at the time my family and I were going though a lot. It was the hardest time of our life. I saw how yoga changed my mom’s life and it inspired me to try a class.

Throughout my first class, I felt so present in the moment. I felt the energy around me, my breath, and was able to release everything that was no longer serving me. Words can’t describe how grateful I am for this journey I am on and all of the incredible people who have inspired me along the way.” – Skyler

Skyler Dearen, RHY Teacher of April, 2016

How has becoming a teacher changed your life?

It has encouraged me to step outside of my comfort zone. In 2013, I became the youngest certified hot yoga teacher in the U.S. I had to make my own path, and create my own standards and expectations. Even though it feels very natural for me to teach yoga, I use the same principles in other areas in my life. Teaching yoga has also brought so many amazing people into my life. The connections I have made and continue to create are truly special to me. ” – Skyler

When did you know you wanted to be a yoga instructor?

I knew I wanted to be a yoga instructor ever since my family opened up Radiant Hot Yoga, in 2013. I always loved taking classes and I had such a passion for yoga. I remember teaching my fist class as if it were yesterday. Throughout the class I had a magical, euphoric feeling and as I said my final speech at the end of my class, I suddenly had tears of joy running down my face. Right there, I knew that I wanted to teach yoga for the rest of my life.

A feeling of deep gratitude filled my heart and ever since then my passion for yoga has grown more and more.” – Skyler

Skyler Dearen, RHY Teacher of April, 2016

What did Teacher Training mean to you and what did it do for you?

Teacher training changed my life in so many ways. I took the training not only to become a teacher, but to also deepen my own practice and to discover more about myself. It was definitely challenging though.

At the time, I thought I I was too young to become a teacher because I didn’t know enough about yoga or the body, but I proved myself wrong. I completely dove two feet into the training and immersed myself into yoga. Having to go to school for nine hours a day, then spending over 35 hours a week on yoga training took a lot of energy, sacrifice, and time.

But what I learned from the challenge is, “If you believe in yourself, you can do anything” and that “There is never a dream too big or too small you can not accomplish if you try.” – Skyler

How necessary is your yoga practice to you?

My yoga practice means so much to me. I feel that I would not be where I am today, if it wasn’t for my practice. My yoga practice has taught me so much about who I am. I know I can always come to my mat to heal my body & soul, to let go and to move deeper within. It is an amazing work-in and an awesome workout.

Every time I come to my mat, I learn more abut who I am and what my purpose is.” – Skyler

Skyler Dearen, RHY Teacher of April, 2016

What do you feel is the personality and energy you bring to your classes?

I am very passionate and joyful spirited. I love teaching and challenging people to their edge. When I am in the hot room teaching there is a great energy, a connectedness between myself and everyone in the room. Unity and love, I feel so alive and happy. I aspire to inspire by my words, the music I play, and the energy I bring to my classes. I am so fully present that it feels as if nothing else exists outside those walls.” – Skyler

What are a few of your favorite things to do outside of yoga?

When I’m not at Radiant, I’m either at the beach, finishing up school, getting a massage, or spending time with those I love. I also LOVE traveling and seeing all different parts of the world.

Everyday gift to be able to live my dream! Namaste ॐ” – Skyler

Skyler Dearen, RHY Teacher of April, 2016

Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga's inspiring teachers Lisa G.

When and why did you begin practicing yoga?

I was an avid runner for years, but due to many injuries I needed to find something that was non-harming to my body yet still felt like exercise. With hot yoga I found I could recreate the same feeling I got from running and do it in a gentler way for my joints.  And the peace and calm I found at the end of each practice was unparalleled.” – Lisa

Lisa Good, RHY Teacher of March, 2016

What was your first experience like?

My first yoga experience was in a Bikram studio and I felt like I was going to die half way through the series.  I had to lay down and just try to get through the heat.  But something about the challenge made me come back and try to master the heat again and through my persistence I fell in love with the practice.” – Lisa

When did you know you wanted to be a yoga instructor?

I didn’t know I wanted to be a teacher until the end of Teacher Training.  I entered teacher training purely with a desire to deepen my yoga practice and my understanding of yoga principles.

I never knew I had a teacher inside me! But at some point during training when I stood up to teach something clicked inside me and I knew I had a passion for teaching. Once I taught my first real class I was completely hooked.” – Lisa

Lisa Good, RHY Teacher of March, 2016

What did Teacher Training mean to you and what did it do for you?

I learned so much about myself and found I could actually command a room. I had always had the “behind-the-scenes” type of personality – never wanting to stand out in a crowd or be noticed. Standing up in front of a room full of my yoga peers really took a lot of strength and I found I enjoyed growing that new part of me.” – Lisa

What is the one thing about Teacher Training that still resonates with you?

One thing that will always stick in my mind from Teacher training was living the ideal that we should always reach for our dreams and never give up. We are all capable of accomplishing goals we thought unattainable.” – Lisa

How necessary is your yoga practice to you?

I always say “I am the Tin Man and Yoga is my oil. Without a regular yoga practice, I cannot easily move my joints and limbs due to so much injury. Yoga keeps me moving, feeling young and healthy and it keeps my mind more attuned.

And like the Tin Man – I have found my heart in yoga.” – Lisa

Lisa Good, RHY Teacher of March, 2016

What do you feel is the personality and energy you bring to your classes?

I think my personality lends itself to a fun, high energy class.  However I also stress mindfulness. I ask my students to practice mindfully and consciously while still having fun and pushing themselves.

I care very much about my students and I want them to get the best and deepest practice possible, but without harming themselves. At the close of class I try to impart a little bit of wisdom about life and how it mirrors our yoga practice.” – Lisa

What has changed the most about you now that you are teaching?

Teaching has helped me find my voice. I have more confidence and am more capable of speaking my views than I was before teaching. I know that in the hot room what I say matters to my students and I try to prepare messages that are both relevant to what is going on in our world and yet spiritual and inspiring.” – Lisa

What are a few of your favorite things to do outside of yoga?

My favorite activity is skiing – mostly moguls, but cruising down a beautiful, groomed slope can be fun too. I love hanging with my family, my dogs, reading and being surrounded by great friends.” – Lisa

Lisa Good, RHY Teacher of March, 2016

Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga's inspiring teachers, Jennie

What stresses in your life lead you to yoga?

I first started hot yoga to supplement my running. I wanted to prevent injuries and try a workout that was on the opposite end of the spectrum! I loved the idea of sweating and detoxing in the hot room. However, what once started physical soon became so mental and spiritual for me. I soon needed yoga every day in order to disconnect from the outside world.

I noticed that every time I practiced, I was more at peace with my life. I was able to better handle and respond to stress, as well as become more patient and accepting of situations.” – Jennie

Radiant Hot Yoga teacher of the month of January: Jennie

What was your first experience like?

My first experience in a hot yoga room was 6 years ago in Bellevue, Washington. I was immediately hooked. I was DRENCHED in sweat. I remember laying in savasana thinking, “what just happened?” The next day I found myself day dreaming of the hot room and I knew it was going to be a lifelong addiction.” – Jennie

When did you know you wanted to be a yoga instructor?

I knew I wanted to be a yoga instructor pretty soon after I began practicing daily. I looked up to and admired all of my teachers. The messages and group intentions during class always stuck with me throughout the day. I wanted to be the person that could guide a room through a practice while inspiring them to do better in the world.” – Jennie

Radiant Hot Yoga teacher of the month of January: Jennie

What did Teacher Training mean to you and what did it do for you?

Teacher Training meant SO much to me. It was 8 weeks that I will never forget. There were a lot of highs and lows. It was a little stressful at times because I was finishing up the second semester of junior year at Chapman and I had finals. I definitely studied my dialogue more than I studied for finals! There were times that I didn’t feel like I was strong enough or ready to lead a class.

I vividly remember crying in Darlene’s arms once telling her I couldn’t do it. She told me I was going to teach, and that I was ready. Without her, I would not be the teacher I am. I pushed myself out of my comfort zones and I practiced more hours than I could count. I made SO many lifelong friends that mean the world to me. Also, I met my boyfriend, Mike Carolan.

We became dialogue buddies early on and we would meet early before teacher training and throughout the week to practice dialogue. He soon after became my boyfriend! I am forever grateful to Radiant for bringing us together.” – Jennie

What is the one thing about Teacher Training that has stuck in your mind and heart even to this day?

One thing about Teacher Training that has stuck in my mind and heart even to this day is that I truly believe if you put your mind and passion into something, anything is possible. It was not easy becoming a teacher. Being in the hot room for hours on end and practicing dialogue over and over gets exhausting. But I knew my hard work and dedication would pay off, and it truly did.” – Jennie

How necessary is your yoga practice to you even after all this time?

My yoga practice is everything to me, even after all of this time. I am a better person because of yoga. I practice what I learn on the four corners of the mat in my daily life. I cannot control what happens to me, but I can control how I react and respond to situations. On my mat I have learned patience, perseverance, compassion, and forgiveness. I am able to let go of the outside world when I am on my mat and be so connected and present within my practice.” – Jennie

Radiant Hot Yoga teacher of the month of January: Jennie

What do you feel is the personality and energy you bring to your classes?

Everyone who knows me outside of the hot room knows me as the happy, bubbly, and outgoing Jennie. They also know I am a workout freak, so I make sure to give my students a workout! In the hot room, I try and bring that same positive energy. I push my students to their limits, while encouraging them. I also love to set group intentions and come up with messages for class that are related to things going on in my life.

So many people connect with messages that are personal and students often ask me to email my messages to them after class. I also love hip-hop so I try to throw some into the flows/abs/spine whenever I can.” – Jennie

What has changed the most about you now that you are teaching?

What has changed the most about me now that I am teaching is I have a new found confidence that I didn’t know I had. Most of the students I teach are older than me, and commanding the class at 21 years old was definitely intimidating at fist. But I have grown to be so comfortable in the room, whether it be giving adjustments or making sure people don’t leave 🙂

I am also so much more mindful than I used to be. In the hot room I move with intention and connect my breath and movement. Outside of the hot room, I try my best to be aware and present at all times. Teaching has truly helped me to live in the now.” – Jennie

What are a few of your favorite things to do outside of yoga?

Outside of yoga you can probably find me at SoulCycle (take Matthew Carolan’s class), True Food, or at the gym. I also LOVE the beach, hiking, baking paleo cookies, and watching the Kardashians (my guiltiest pleasure).” – Jennie

Radiant Hot Yoga teacher of the month of January: Jennie

Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga’s inspiring teachers, Skyler

How long have you been practicing yoga?

“I have been practicing yoga for 8 years.” – Skyler

What do you enjoy most about teaching?

“I love the impact you can make on someone by teaching their class, as well as the connections you make with your students.” – Skyler

Radiant-Hot-Yoga-off-the-mat-726

What changes do you see in students who practice hot yoga regularly?

“I see physical changes in the body such as losing weight, building muscle, toning the body, and becoming more flexible. Most importantly the mental benefits I see are the students are much happier and brighter. Less stressed and can handle situations easier.” – Skyler

What inspired you to teach?

“What has inspired me to teach was that yoga healed me from my past.

Yoga has also brought so much peace and happiness to my life, and has inspired me to be the best version of my self. It has taught me to see beauty with in my imperfections.

As well as to trust in my journey and know that i am exactly where I am supposed to be.” – Skyler

Radiant-Hot-Yoga-in-Tulum-Mexico-Retreat-2

What makes Radiant so radiant in your opinion?

“Radiant Hot Yoga is so radiant because of the people who surround it; teachers and students.

I feel that the teachers and staff are always so happy and inspiring.

And the students are so motivational and and amazing. We all unite and work as one. We empower each other to do our bests.” – Skyler

How has becoming a teacher changed your life?

“It has encouraged me to step outside of my comfort zone.

Being the youngest certified hot yoga teacher, I had to make my own path, and create my own standard and expectations. And even though it feels very natural for me to teach yoga, I use the same principles in other areas in my life.

Knowing that I would be teased by my peer and looked down by my elders I had to believe in myself and believe in what I am doing.” – Skyler

What advice do you have to students that are new to hot yoga?

“My advice would be to take as many breaks as you need by lying down on your mat. Drinking plenty of water before and after class. Pouring water on your head during class.

Trying to come as much as possible, at least 4-7 times a week.

But most of all leaving all judgement and expectations outside of the room. We are all here to heal our minds, bodies, and spirits.” – Skyler

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Categories: Teacher spotlights

Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga’s inspiring teachers, Sienna

How long have you been practicing yoga?

“Since June of 2013” – Sienna

What do you enjoy most about teaching?

“What I enjoy most about teaching is watching students realize their inner beauty. Asmuch as I love seeing the transformations in their body, the changes to their self esteem and self love is the most magical thing to witness.

I am so happy to work in a place where people come to relax, rejuvenate, and restore. I also as a teacher learn so much from my students. I have come to realize that we work together as a team.

I give the students energy and they give me energy. In that room for the 60 or 80 minutes that I have with them, we are all one. There are no words to describe the happiness that this unity brings me.” – Sienna

Sienna-Teacher-Spotlight-profile-pic

What changes do you see in students who practice hot yoga regularly?

“I notice of course changes in their physical bodies. People who have struggled for years from back injuries or knee pain etc. are able to move in ways that they never thought were possible.

I most of all notice a change in their attitude. The more that you practice yoga, connect to your breath and body, the more you are able to respond to situations as opposed to react to them. Yoga gives you the time to breathe, cool off, and think things through before getting angry.

In class we talk a lot about gratitude. When students can think of what they have instead of what they don’t have, I see their lives changes right before my eyes.” – Sienna

What inspired you to teach?

“After I started coming to yoga regularly, I became so excited about how amazing I felt that I wanted as many people as possible to feel it too. I wanted to become the person that helps to heal others.

I originally started yoga to become perfect, and over time I realized I will never be perfect. Yoga instead gave me the ability to see my beauty in all of my imperfections, it made me proud of who I was, which is a gift that I want to spend the rest of my life giving to those around me.” – Sienna

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What makes Radiant so radiant in your opinion?

“I don’t even know where to begin. Radiant Hot Yoga is an environment where you can truly let go. I work at the Front Desk as well as teach and I see people come in with a huge smile, and sometimes crying their eyes out. We are a family here at Radiant. Even if you are a complete stranger, if you need a hug, we give you one. If you need moral support we will be your cheerleaders. There is not a time I have ever witnessed where this studio wasn’t full of smiling, loving faces. I wake up every morning for work or to teach with pure joy that I get to come here. If you have never been here before you are in for a gigantic treat. Radiant Hot Yoga is bliss.” – Sienna

How has becoming a teacher changed your life?

“Teaching yoga has changed my perspective on life. There are days where I start to beat myself up for the tiniest things, and after I teach a class all those feelings evaporate.

I am now working on looking at myself with the same accepting, kind, and loving lens that I see all of my students with. Teaching keeps me in check. My favorite part of being a teacher is knowing in my heart that I have created a space for people to experiment and challenge themselves without feeling bullied or judged. I love helping people see their full potential.” – Sienna

What advice do you have to students that are new to hot yoga?

Don’t be scared!

I was seriously terrified to try hot yoga for the first time. But their is nothing intimidating about it at all. Just know that you do the best that you can. If you need to take breaks, who cares? It’s all good 🙂

Remember that the hardest part of your first class is making the decision to come to your mat. Once you are in the room, on your mat, the hardest part it over.” – Sienna

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Categories: Teacher spotlights

Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga’s inspiring teachers, Erica S.

How long have you been practicing yoga?

“I have been practicing yoga for over 10 years!” – Erica S.

What do you enjoy most about teaching?

“I have taught many different types of fitness classes for the last 25 years and my love and passion is Hot Yoga.

I enjoy it the most because I get to motivate and help my students get deeper within their postures and their practice. I love to give verbal and physical adjustments so the students can find the correct alignment within the postures.

Overall teaching at Radiant Hot Yoga has allowed me to truly express who I am as a teacher and that ultimately is the best gift. I get to express my personality and connect with so many wonderful students. I am very grateful to be a part of The Radiant Hot Yoga Family!” – Erica S.

RHY-teacher-of-the-month-June-2014-Erica-S-1

What changes do you see in students who practice hot yoga regularly?

“I have been teaching at Radiant Hot Yoga for 9 months and I have have seen tremendous growth in so many of my students.

I always see the physical changes but more importantly I see the students more at peace when they make it to their mats on a regular day to day basis. I see the students who practice regularly have more energy and confidence. The healing that happens on the mat is therapeutic and empowering.” – Erica S.

What inspired you to teach?

“I was inspired to teach when I started practicing yoga twice a day. I did two 90 minute classes daily and I found it to be the best workout mentally and physically.

I was approached to start teaching and I knew it was something I had to do.” – Erica S.

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What makes Radiant so radiant in your opinion?

“Radiant Hot Yoga is Radiant because the heat is 105 and humidity is 35% unlike many other yoga studios in the area. The heat is so important to open and heal the body.

I also love the Radiant sequence. The sequence of postures and flows is challenging for beginners to advanced. Each teacher is unique and inspiring.” – Erica S.

How has becoming a teacher changed your life?

“I have been teaching for so long that it is a huge part of my life. I love to share my knowledge and passion of yoga. Being a teacher is not a job it is a gift that I get to share daily.” – Erica S.

What advice do you have to students that are new to hot yoga?

“The best advice to new hot yoga students is to take a lot of breaks during class, hydrate well, and keep coming to your mat everyday.” – Erica S.

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Categories: Teacher spotlights

Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga’s inspiring teachers, Morgan!

How long have you been a hot yoga instructor / doing yoga in general?

“I have done yoga on and off over the years, but never dove fully into the practice until about a year ago where I began practicing on a daily basis. My body, my mind and my heart were changed forever at that point! I completely fell in love with yoga and what it provided for my life by helping me make that mind, body, soul connection regularly.

I knew very quickly that I wanted to teach and guide others! It was calling to me! I certified through Radiant Hot Yoga and have been guiding classes at the studio for about 6 months. I love my job so much!!” – Morgan

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What made you decide to become a teacher at RHY?

“The way that I feel when I practice yoga personally is so beautiful, and I was filled with inspiration within to teach and be a guide to others in having the same experiences! I felt moved to do this. I have never looked back and see so much in my future as a teacher.

I love RHY and it is exactly where I want to be, and where I want to be teaching!” – Morgan

You are a mother of 4 beautiful children, how does teaching and practicing yoga affect your home life?

“Wow. So so much!

I had unbelievable personal growth through my own yoga journey. Being a mother is the most amazing, fulfilling thing in my life! But as a Mom it can also be very busy, and at times I felt swallowed up by the fast pace and stresses of life. It was hard for me to cut out time for me. to just work on me. I never really understood the importance of making this time for myself.

Being able to practice yoga, calms my mind, keeps me present and centered, and keeps my body in great shape! Incorporating the regular practice of yoga and meditation completely enhanced the rest of my life. In all areas. Now I realize that nurturing this part of me is an essential part of my well being, of me feeling whole as a human being, and also in my ability to be the very best mother I can be. Yoga increased my love towards myself.

At this time in my life, I have the best self esteem I have ever had. And this is after 4 babies! This is because I learned not just acceptance, but also embracing of the things that aren’t perfect, and I learned the power of giving yourself love! I learned to “breath out” negativity and “breath in” positivity. This has made me a happier, more patient, calm, understanding, and better mother all around! My love for myself truly increased my capacity to love my family even more (if that was possible!!) and to give of myself more. Because I feel complete and at peace personally, I am able to love more, give more, and most of all be present, happy, and ENJOY more of each and every day with my precious family! Yoga brought me to a higher awareness of being present!

Teaching yoga specifically has been an amazing outlet for me. It has given me a space to spread my wings and fly! I gained so many new qualities I didn’t know I had in me, and felt tremendous growth! And anyone and everyone knows, that where there is growth and a place to shine and give of your heart, there is happiness!!

My husband always says “your so happy when you come home from teaching!” He can see how much I love it! ” – Morgan

What are you most excited about every time you go in the hot room to teach?

“I just truly feel amazing when I see the growth in all of our students! I love them all and l love to see them coming regularly.

l love to see how they have changes, I see their confidence go up, their practice grow, and I love to see their smiling faces as they leave the room. Their gratitude for the class. It fills my heart up so much! I sometimes just stand there thinking to myself how much I love my job!!” – Morgan

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What is your favorite part of being apart of the Radiant Hot Yoga family?

“Radiant Hot yoga is such a special studio to be a part of!

We have the most amazing community amongst our students! I love to see everyone waiting for class to open in the hall “catching up” with each other every day. So many friendships are built in the studio. And as a teacher, I feel so blessed to work with some of the most sweet, inspirational teachers. Everyone lifts each other up! Its pretty amazing!

Radiant was created with so much love and you can feel it in the studio! It really is a yoga family!” – Morgan

What is your favorite posture and why?

“I love standing bow! It makes me feel so much strength mentally and physically. I feel powerful, yet graceful. I love how my body feels after doing the posture!” – Morgan

Do you have any advice for new potential yogis?

“Just remember that we all were beginners at one point! Never feel competition or “less than” because you are new! Feel beautiful exactly where you are at right now, and with continual practice, watch the transformation of mind and body happen before your eyes!

“Eat like you love yourself, move like you love yourself, speak like you love yourself, Act like you love yourself”” – Morgan

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Categories: Teacher spotlights

Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga’s inspiring teachers, Melania!

How long have you been practicing yoga?

“I have been practicing varying styles of yoga on and off for 14 years. I have practiced hot yoga for a year and a half.” – Melania

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What do you enjoy most about teaching?

“I am inspired by students in each and every class to see how strong, determined and focused each person can be.

I love the energy that is generated by connecting together and becoming one, if only for an hour or so. It is moving; it is so beautiful and it fills me full of hope and joy.” – Melania

What changes do you see in students who practice hot yoga regularly?

“The physical transformations in the body become obvious within a month or so of those who practice several times a week. But it is when you talk to students one on one and hear how they are healing themselves, finding themselves, and discovering new depths to themselves by coming to their mat regularly that you truly see transformation.

Men and women learn to be vulnerable and let go. You can see the peace and calm on their faces after class when these magic moments happen.” – Melania

What inspired you to teach?

“I love how I feel when I practice yoga regularly. I feel I am the truest, best, and most balanced version of myself when I practice. I want everyone to feel the beauty, inspiration, motivation, connection of the mind, body and spirit that yoga can create; this is what motivates me to teach. Everyone should have the opportunity to feel this amazing!” – Melania

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What makes Radiant so radiant in your opinion?

“There is a beautiful energy and vibe about RHY. The studio was built with love and the intention to heal those who walk through the doors. You can feel this energy as soon as you set foot in the studio.

I felt it in my first class and right away RHY became my home away from home. I know that I can come to class and reconnect to myself each time. I know that I am supported by the RHY family of teachers and students.” – Melania

How has becoming a teacher changed your life?

“I feel that I have arrived. I think most of us are constantly looking ahead to the next thing, waiting to achieve our goals and dreams. Teaching yoga has been a dream of mine for many years. It is an amazing feeling to have accomplished this and to be living my dream every day.

I find myself living in the moment now and not always looking to the future, waiting for my moment to arrive.” – Melania

What advice do you have to students that are new to hot yoga?

“Just breathe. Keep it simple and take it easy when you first begin your yoga journey. Just focus on your breath and try not to worry about anything else. And smile, it’s just yoga.” – Melania

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Categories: Teacher spotlights

Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga's inspiring teachers, Erika!

How long have you been practicing yoga?

“I’ve been practicing yoga for almost a year (since January 31st, 2013). I was driving by and thought how interesting it would be to take a hot yoga class. After my 2 week introductory offer, I was hooked and signed up immediately for membership at the studio.” – Erika H.

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What do you enjoy most about teaching?

“I enjoy being a guide or service to others. When I walk into the room and see the students before me, I want to inspire them and create a space of inspiration and transformation. I want people to realize that their journeys are unique and valuable. I embrace all who come into the studio.” – Erika H.

What changes do you see in students who practice hot yoga regularly?

“I see students being able to “let go”… I tell my students that after coming for a while, the heat becomes secondary and that there is more to discover when they are present and focused in their practice.” – Erika H.

What inspired you to teach?

“I honestly didn’t see myself as a teacher until Darlene approached me and asked me to consider it. The journey was challenging for me and at times I thought I didn’t have what it took to be a teacher. And with the support from the studio and my family, I kept at it and became certified in December 2013.” – Erika H.

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What makes Radiant so radiant in your opinion?

“For me Radiant was like walking into someone’s dream… someone’s vision. I acknowledge Darlene for taking that step that so many of us are afraid to make; to build a space where people can experience growth, love and acceptance. I want poeple to see the studio, teachers and practice as a great instrument to create a better version of themselves!” – Erika H.

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How has becoming a teacher changed your life?

“Becoming a teacher challenged me to face some of my fears in life. Am I good enough? What if I disappoint? Do I have what it takes?… If I allowed these obstacles to win, I would not be teaching today. My family has always been supportive of me but leading a group of people in a sweaty room really inspired them to see what yoga is all about and why I like it so much!!!” – Erika H.

What advice do you have to students that are new to hot yoga?

“BTake it slow! There is no rush and every day is different.
Yoga is something you can do for the rest of your life and can start at any time, at any age. The more you get to your mat, the more you will understand and grow your practice.
And the day you finally get to touch your toes or do standing splits, I will rejoice and celebrate with you… no matter how long it takes!” – Erika H.

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Categories: Teacher spotlights

Meet one of Radiant Hot Yoga's inspiring teachers, Bridget!

How long have you been practicing yoga?

“I’ve been practicing yoga for almost 1 year. My first yoga class was at Radiant Hot Yoga the week they opened in January. I will never forget my very first class.
Kari J was my teacher. I had no idea what I was doing, but for some reason, I’ve never felt so connected with anything in my life. During my first class, I knew I had found ‘my thing’.” – Bridget S.

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What do you enjoy most about teaching?

“So many things! Connecting with people. We are all in that room together, many of us for different reasons. But the energy that is created is so powerful, I feed off of it.” – Bridget S.

What changes do you see in students who practice hot yoga regularly?

Physical changes: I have seen students, including myself, become more toned with a regular practice. Flexibility will increase, as well as endurance. Appetite begins to change. I know personally after a hot yoga practice, I crave fruit, salad, and anything rich in antioxidants (with exception to my off-and-on cravings for Mags doughnuts).

Emotional/mental changes: It is amazing what this practice will do to someone’s confidence, in and out of the yoga studio. I’ve seen some of the shyest individuals enter those doors, and leave ready to take on the world. Fear, intimidation, judgments, and doubt all begin to disappear with a regular yoga practice, and they begin to disappear in your everyday life. This practice is equally beneficial for your body and your mind.”- Bridget S.

What inspired you to teach?

“Darlene, and her belief in me. That’s where it started. I continue to be inspired everyday by the practice itself, the students, and the teachers.” – Bridget S.

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What makes radiant so radiant in your opinion?

“The practice, the studio, the community. The way you feel when you enter the studio, and the way you feel when you leave. There’s no other word to describe it.” – Bridget S.

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How has becoming a teacher changed your life?

“What can be more rewarding than teaching such a beautiful and powerful practice. Seeing the positive physical and mental transformations in others gives me so much joy. I’m so grateful.” – Bridget S.

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Categories: Teacher spotlights

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