This week’s interview is with Lucy Tofield, a passionate Yogi and Contemporary Yoga graduate.
Lucy is a recent graduate of our 200-hour teacher training and is currently understudying with Karla at the Contemporary Yoga Centre in Remuera. She will be undertaking her pregnancy yoga teacher training with CY and Opti-mum this year.
Lucy’s passion for yoga is evident - very recently she organised and facilitated a series of Saturday classes run by recent graduates of Contemporary Yoga at the Centre. We asked Lucy to respond to a few questions and statements about her yoga journey … here’s what she said:
Contemporary Yoga (CY): Why do you practice yoga?
Lucy: Yoga brings me a sense of inner calmness and ‘being-ness’ which I have struggled to find through other modalities (without being guided by a teacher). Since completing my training, yoga has been my anchor and a way to feel truly comfortable within myself, again and again. Yoga also allows me the space to connect to my heart and make heart-based decisions - this has been life-changing for me.
CY: Who/what has been an important influence on your teaching practice? Why?
Lucy: The teachers at Contemporary Yoga! My approach to yoga has completely shifted since joining Contemporary and my relationship to the practice is so different from before. I feel better than ever for it. All the teachers bring such different ways of teaching which is awesome.
I find inspiration from going to other teachers’ classes, even if their approach is very different to mine. It’s been important for me to keep an open mind to different approaches and ways of teaching, I think this really adds to your own teaching and self practise.
CY: What has been your biggest challenge as a new yoga teacher?
Lucy: Teaching in a way which honours your own approach and what you would like to teach, while meeting the needs and desires of your students. There’s definitely a balance which comes with this and it’s been important to realise that your teaching won’t suit everyone.
You don’t want to water-down your approach to please everyone - which is impossible anyway - but you do want to connect with your students … it is a continuous, learning journey for me.
CY: As a yoga teacher, I am most excited to share…
Lucy: … new concepts and ideas with students which bring them deeper into their practice and body. I really resonated with the work on organs we did during training and have been exploring this since. I love guiding people to move from an organ, like the lungs, and seeing how they move / process this and hearing their feedback, it makes every class intriguing and different, even if you are teaching the same movements.
CY: Since completing my CY teacher training, I have …
Lucy: … immersed myself in the yoga world as much as possible. I have attended numerous trainings, under-studied weekly with Karla, tried to make as many connections as possible and taught as much as I can. For me, keeping momentum and throwing myself into the world of teaching and self-practise has really helped me build confidence and inspiration for classes and course ideas.
CY: The most rewarding aspect of being a yoga teacher is …
Lucy: … knowing that you have made a difference to someone’s day!
I have found that when I make connections with students and they come to classes regularly, I really enjoy teaching. It goes beyond teaching shapes and moves into empowering people to listen to their body, to move in ways which work for them, to build confidence and trust in their body, as well as calming the nervous system and setting them up for the day ahead, or for a good night’s rest.
When a concept clicks with someone, it’s such a joy to be part of.
Lucy currently teaches twice a week at Wholehearted Yoga Studio in Birkenhead, Auckland (Tuesday AM / Thursday PM) and runs courses incorporating the learning gained from Contemporary Yoga training.
I look forward to connecting with you!
To connect with Lucy: