YOGA WITH ANNA

I 1st attended Anna’s class in June 2017. It was on a Monday morning, I had the day off for a spa day with my best friend Lhara and thought it would be nice to go to a class beforehand. She had a lovely home studio that held around 8 students. Anna was so warm and welcoming, she even wished me a Happy Birthday for the day before bless her.
Another time I attended her studio was in March 2018, she had a Mother’s Day Workshop which included a delicious homemade smoothie at the end of our practice. It was so funny because at the end of class, whilst drinking our smoothies, we went around the room asking each other what our kids were doing to celebrate Mother’s Day. It got to my turn and I was like “Err, I don’t have any kids”. I just saw a lovely yoga workshop that happened to fall on Mother’s Day, completely didn’t register in my brain that it was a lovely yoga workshop for mums on Mother’s Day haha! We all laughed it off, and turns out I had already planned to spend the day with my Goddaughters, so didn’t feel too bad 🙂
I loved Anna’s energy and I always felt so relaxed in her home studio, so I went ahead and booked a 1-1 class with her a few months before I went away for my yoga teacher training.

https://rosariofitness.co.uk/yogashalaibiza/

Private classes can seem expensive but the 1-1 attention she gave was well worth it, along with her knowledge and advice. The tips she gave really helped me with my self-practice, and I would definitely recommend a 1-1 class or attending her beginner’s workshop if you want to learn more about yoga and better your alignment etc.
As much as I’m a yoga teacher now, and I can spot how to correct my students, when it comes to my own alignment I like to have my teachers keep me in check and improve my posture. I love when Anna assists me, even if it’s just verbally, she makes such a difference.

So in the run up to my YTT I began to attend Anna’s classes once a week. This time her classes were set in her gorgeous new studio in the garden! As soon as you step in you feel at peace, it really is a beautiful space and the other students in her class are always really friendly, I could spend all day in there! 🙂

The studio (0:00 – 0:25)..

Loving these blankets during winter savasana right now! 🙂

“Small classes mean a bespoke teaching experience, helping you to reach your personal goals”

This is one of the reasons why I really enjoy Anna’s classes, where it is so intimate (11 students max) you do get more attention and care, she will always give us alternatives, especially if any of us have any injuries.
She has been so supportive during my studies too. At the moment I’m studying for my pregnancy, post-natal, baby and me yoga teacher training and she has been so helpful. So to give you an idea of why I wanted to become a pregnancy yoga teacher, I’ve copied and pasted one of the questions from my registration form below:

Why does this yoga teacher training interest you?
I used to suffer from depression and anxiety, and yoga has really helped me to maintain a calm and peaceful mind and life, keeping any of those feelings at bay. I’ve noticed over the years (through my loved ones) how much becoming a mother changes you, as much as it’s an amazing experience it can also be very challenging. So through teaching yoga I would love to help others enjoy this experience as much as they can and help them feel better about themselves, the same way yoga has helped me.

And as part of my coursework, I had to observe/take part in 3 different pregnancy yoga classes. What I realised during these classes is that all the teachers had kids and already experienced pregnancy, Anna asked if I had any questions bless her and I did have one:

What do you think of me teaching pregnancy yoga even though I haven’t been pregnant before?
I just want to see everyone happy and healthy, especially mothers who are going through such a big transition in their life, I believe I can help make a positive difference to them and how they’re feeling through yoga 🙂
But, I can’t actually resonate with them or really understand how they’re feeling because I haven’t been pregnant before.
I can do a few pelvic floor squeezes so at least I understand from that aspect haha..

I actually sent that in an email and she called me straight away love her. She reassured me that I didn’t need to have that experience to teach pregnancy yoga, my intention is good and that’s all that matters. She also made a point that male doctors who deliver babies and perform c sections have never been pregnant but they still know what they’re doing, and that certain addiction therapists can still do their job even though they’ve never suffered from an addiction. And it’s so true! I felt a lot better after our conversation and haven’t had any doubts since 🙂
Like she said my intention is good, and I believe I’m a caring person. Plus I have experience teaching yoga already and I’m studying lots about the female pelvis (anatomy and exercises), all these things add up and I’m sure I will have lots of happy pregnant students when I run my classes 🙂
I cannot put into words how grateful I am for Anna’s support, I was so surprised recently when she uploaded a pic of us on her Instagram with the cutest caption:

https://www.instagram.com/p/BptS6eVg5xM/

Thank you Anna, I have so much love and respect for you, and I wouldn’t be where I am now if it wasn’t for your advice and encouragement. Not only with yoga but with my Fight Klub DnB Workout training too!
Before I launched my classes at Sweaty Betty I asked Anna if I could practice on her and she said yes bless her, we had such a laugh. I even brought my boxing gloves and pads to do some 1-1 pad work with her and she was so funny, every time she punched she would say sorry, then I would shout out “move!” and she’d be like “where?!” hahahaha! 🙂 I know it might seem like something small but I know how busy Anna is with her business and her family, so for her to make the time to help me with my Fight Klub training meant a lot. I’ve always believed in quality over quantity, but even more so since meeting Anna. Although we haven’t known each other long, all the encouragement and support she’s given me has really helped build up my confidence, and better my teaching skills too 🙂
Now before I finish off with our Q&A, I just wanted to share Anna’s February 2019 Zanzibar Yoga Retreat:

http://www.yogawithanna.co.uk/zanzibar-feb-2019.html

A week of complete indulgence and relaxation in Zanzibar, an island in the Indian Ocean off the coast of East Africa known for its multicultural infusion and epitome of paradise. We will be making the eco luxury resort – Seasons Lodge Zanzibar – our home for the week, a family run hotel on the beach front, built and run by our good friend Mike Clarke and his family using local resources and builders. If daily dynamic & restorative yoga classes, luxury hand built rooms, locally sourced food, low carbon footprint dwellings are your thing, this might be the kind of retreat for you…

Highlights

  • Daily morning energising & dynamic Vinyasa Flow class with pranayama & meditation
  • Daily evening restorative/yin yoga classes including pranayama & meditation
  • Breakfast & Dinner: locally sourced dinner (seafood caught 10m away), infused with local spices followed by dessert
  • A day trip to Menai Bay – snorkelling, sunbathing, swimming with dolphins, feasting on an uninhabited islets, pristine marine life and crystal-clear turquoise waters
  • Private consultation with Anna Holland to discuss your yoga practice
  • ​Meditation & pranayama, and plenty of free time!

Sounds like my dream holiday! What do you love about hosting retreats and workshops?
What I love about hosting retreats is seeing people from such different backgrounds all come together and become friends & support each other. You notice how when people devote a long weekend or a week to nurturing themselves, they quickly learn how not to rush to class or run out after savasana and they pick up self care habits quickly. Being able to facilitate people to wind down over the duration of the retreat is the best sort of job satisfaction one can get. It really is a perk. Workshops enable me to hear specific, often such insightful, questions from clients who would otherwise not be able to ask in a class situation. Deepening their understanding for all things yoga as well as my ability to teach.

Biggest learning curve in your yoga career?
Probably not a learning curve and might even put people off, but I know nothing. I’ve spent over 900 hours of training over 6 years and I feel like I could spend that time again and still not know enough. What I do know is people totally surprise you – that is a given.

Anna you know lots! I completely understand what you mean though, while I was on my 200 hour teacher training I was looking into the 300 hour course haha, 200 hours sounds like a lot but when it comes to yoga it really is just a basic intro! Ok so next question. Who inspires you?
My clients. You (Rochelle). I learn so much from what they share with me. My recent teacher Uma Dinsmore-Tuli is sort of the punk kid in female yoga and she inspires me to no end. With a BEcon in Anthropology, I love learning from women from around the globe who infuse movement and connect to their femal sakti (power). Women or mothers who multitask the most complicated of lifestyles and sill manage to go to yoga classes.

Bless you, thank you Anna! Well you have you always been one of my favourite yoga teachers for sure 🙂 Who are yours?
Awwwwwww. As above, Uma Dinsmore-Tuli a pioneer for women’s yoga (or womb yoga), Choi Kok – an amazing teacher I was lucky enough to discover 6 years ago. Sue Gregory who is sadly relocating to South Africa. Austin Ince who not only teaches a sublime class but if you follow him on Facebook his political banter will keep you entertained.

When did you start practicing and what made you want to become a teacher?
My mother took me to a yoga class when I was 14. I didn’t like it but something drew me back. I kept going throughout the years and it became my go to when sh*t hit the fan.

Advice for anyone new to yoga?
Yoga is for everyone and everybody. If you don’t like your first teacher, give them another go. If that doesn’t work go find another teacher. No doubt you work yourself hard and give yourself little ‘me’ time, so try and find a class that is soothing, slow and nourishing. You will get a week’s instalment of feeling centered.

As we’re coming towards the end of the year, me and my friends have been reflecting on our 2018 lessons learned. The most important one for me is listening to my intuition, they say gut feelings are guardian angels and this is the 1st year I’ve completely understood it! My intuition has become stronger and stronger with my sobriety and nowadays I’m getting better at taking action as soon as I get that gut feeling, and it’s safe to say it has got me out of some sticky situations. Thank you intuition! 🙂 Oh and another one while I’m here is making time to rest. I’ve only put this into practice over the past couple months but it has helped me so much with my studies and training etc. I’m constantly on the go, trying to squeeze everything in, but now I make it a priority to get a good sleep every night (7-8 hours) and meditate every morning. I’m still constantly on the go but I don’t feel tired or overwhelmed because I make sure I keep well rested. What are your 2018 lessons learned?
Slow the f**k down. Spend time with people who nurture you and make you feel like you can be yourself. If you don’t love yourself it is never too late to start that learning curb. Never rush into change.

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog. For more info re Anna’s classes and prices, please see her website below:

http://www.yogawithanna.co.uk/

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