As well as the longest day of the year (Summer Solstice), June 21st has been designated as international Yoga day.  Yoga has always been a super important part of Tatiana’s and Phoebe’s life who are now both yoga teachers.

To celebrate International Yoga Day, we have shared a curation of yoga reflections from our #WOMENOFSILOU community. Meet these inspiring women and discover how practicing yoga has changed their life.

We asked these #WOMENOFSILOU the following question…

“What has yoga done to change your life” + “What is the best tip for new students?”

TATIANA KOVYLINA – FOUNDER OF SILOU LONDON

The practice of yoga has given me physical strength, mental clarity, it has made me aware of my character strengths and has built resilience not only on the mat. My practice evolves with me and is never the same, reflecting and embracing ongoing changes one goes through. In yoga practice we create space – I choose to leave this newly opened space to be filled with love and compassion, zest for life and gratitude.

Follow Here

PHOEBE GREENACRE – CEO & CO-FOUNDER OF SILOU

Yoga for me has a been a journey of discovery to my authentic self. It has given me tools to unravel the conditioning of my upbringing and from society, and let me access the deeper parts of my being at a cellular level.

Tips for beginners:

My tip for new students is just practice. Don’t look at the person beside you. Don’t compare yourself to someone that has been doing yoga for years. It’s not a yoga perfect, but a yoga practice. The magic comes through the unraveling and surrendering to what is here for you today.

Follow Here

CAT MEFFAN – YOGA INSTRUCTOR & WELLNESS BLOGGER

Yoga gave me a new outlook on life. It helped me reframe past experiences, discover more about myself and my body and it allowed me time for myself. Through asana, meditation, free dance and pranayama I can honestly say that I am a happier person, shining from within.

Tips for beginners:

One thing all new yoga students should remember is that the journey is what’s most important, not the end goal. Try to let go of constantly reaching for the next new posture and just allow yourself to be within the transition, be within the moments of fluidity and ease.

www.catmeffan.com

Follow Here

ELLA WOODS – Founder of Deliciously Ella & Yoga Instructor

Yoga has truly transformed my life. I had no idea how to find the sense of calm, peace and stillness that it creates before and learning how to tap into that has been the greatest gift. Each time I physically make space in my body, I mentally and emotionally make space too and it just feels unbelievable.

Tips for beginners:

Start gently, start slowly and try and drop your ego. The first time you try anything new it feels a little disjointed, but stay open-minded to it, try a few teachers and a few styles and just remember that everyone is a beginner and one point and we’re all always students, there’s always more to learn. Yoga isn’t about touching your toes, it’s about creating inner peace and quiet, so don’t start comparing yourself anyone else in the room, just feel into your body and what feels good for you.

www.deliciouslyella.com

Follow Here

Calli Pophan –  Yoga Teacher & Mentor

Yoga over the years has transformed who I am and how I show up in the world on so many levels, it ripples in to every aspect of your life from the physical to the emotional and energetic. I am more mindful and  kinder to myself and everyone else. It’s given me a tool to continue to ask questions, to enquire, feel and sense in to the magic of this existence..

Tips for beginners:

My tip for anyone new to yoga is to keep going, to let go of needing to make shapes or touch your toes and instead use the practise as a gateway to connecting to your body and to marvel at the magic of who you are and how you move. You are a unique, one off masterpiece. Move in awe of that and trust that the journey is way more powerful and interesting than any perceived pose or destination. Enjoy the ride!

Follow Here

KAT PITHER – OWNER OF YOGI BARE

For me Yoga was like the big kiss scene in the movies. All the elements of the magic of life were already there but it truly made me notice & awaken to them. It made me fall in love with the poetry of being alive & my place within it, right here, right now.

Tips for beginners:

When you let go of trying to ‘do’ yoga & start to ‘feel’ it – that’s when the practice begins.

www.yogibare.com

Follow Here

MERCEDES SIEFF – Yoga Teacher & Founder of Yeotown

Yoga hasn’t so much changed my life but rather it has given me the courage, wisdom and knowledge on how I can change it for myself and for the better. My best tip for new students is to not take the poses so seriously and don’t pull your best bitch face when you walk into the studio.

Tips for beginners:

More smiles please, yoga is actually meant to be fun and enjoyable!

www.yeotown.com

Follow Here

Natasha Kerry – Yoga Teacher & Mentor

Yoga has allowed me to recognise that I am WHOLE as I am and that NOW is where I am meant to be. It has allowed me to let go of all my stored yesterdays and my imagined tomorrows and rest here in the present moment. Tasting the uniqueness of each day. Instead of always wishing to be in ‘a future place where I am happy’, I now deeply appreciate the moment I am in and I am grateful for all I have already.

www.natashakerryyoga.com

Follow Here

MONA LISA GODFREY – Yoga Instuctor

The initial practice of yoga asana led me to meditation, that has been the biggest life-changing gift. Meditation has a constant residual impact on my everyday moments – how I form my thoughts, how I speak to other people, the place from which I base my decisions, and how I show up in life. The practice has given me the ability to hear (and the courage to listen) to the subtle whispers of my intuition. It’s always a work in progress, but I’ve made many bold decisions that bore exotic fruits – which I would never otherwise have encountered without the guidance of my breath. I would be living a different life, much more ‘laid out’ for me, had I not stumbled upon yoga.

Tips for beginners:

The path, from the very first step, is self- acceptance. When we practice, we begin to open ourselves up to self-love and self-acceptance. If you feel like you’re not fit enough to do yoga, not young enough to do yoga, not flexible to do yoga – this is exactly why you should do yoga! In yoga, nothing needs to be pushed away. It’s a safe place to explore all these false stories we tell ourselves. Once we begin to realise that we are perfect for yoga, we begin to discover other stories we’ve been telling ourselves that are also not so true and might be holding us back in other areas of life.

Follow Here

EMILIA METAIREAU– London Based Yoga Teacher

Yoga brings me energy through breath and movement, as well as peace, stability, and a deep sense of gratitude.

Tips for beginners:

Just have fun with it and let go of any expectations. That’s where the magic happens in yoga!

Follow Here

ANNIE CLARKE – Yoga Instructor & Owner of Mind Body Bowl

Yoga has been my anchor, a practice that has taught me so much about myself and about the world, about my relationships with others, and so much more. It’s an endless curiosity that nourishes my mind and body and helps me to feel at home wherever I am.

Tips for beginners:

Don’t worry if you don’t ‘get it’ in your first class. And don’t worry if you aren’t as bendy as others. It took me 4 years to touch my toes, and many classes before I really got hooked. Take time to explore different teachers and styles – it’s not a one size fits all practice but there is something for everyone.

www.mindbodybowl.co.uk

Follow Here

ANNIE NICOL – London Yoga Instructor

Yoga has saved my life! It gave me freedom from my thoughts, it gave me community love friendship and somewhere where I know I will always be welcomed with open arms.

Tips for beginners:

Go to lots of different teachers, there are different styles of yoga but you need to find that persons soul and spirit you connect with to really fall in love with yoga.

Follow Here

Danielle Wills –  Yoga Teacher

There was a quote by Francis of Assisi that my mother used to say to me when I was a kid- “do few things, but do them well.”

Yoga is always reminding me to stay steeped in the present, to really enjoy the experience of being here and in connection to the people around me. Instead of constantly checking my phone for my latest messages or trying to multitask my full to do list, I’m learning to give more of my attention to what’s happening in front of me right now.

Tips for beginners:

Talk to your mat neighbours! I’ve made some of my best friends and closest soul sisters from the classes I’ve gone to and retreats I’ve attended. 

I used to be so shy when I came to class, I’d stay on my mat like it was a floating raft in a great big sea of sharks. Over time I’ve started to realise that the sharks are just other likeminded souls who need connection just as much as I do – and that they’re not really sharks at all 🙂

Follow Here

KATHRYN FIELDING – Marketing Manager at KXU & Yoga Instructor

Yoga keeps me on track. When I feel anxious, overwhelmed or exhausted getting on the mat is restorative and helps me rationalise and put things into perspective. I initially approached yoga for the physical benefits but now wholeheartedly rely on my practice for the mental benefits.

Tips for beginners:

Don’t compare yourself to anyone else, yoga doesn’t mean you have to be flexible or is not for you if you can’t touch your toes! Also, try different teachers. Everyone is unique and what works for your friend may not work for you!

ww.kathrynfielding.co.uk

Follow Here

Book tickets for our next #WOMENOFSILOU yoga event > here