April 19th 2005 my life changed forever. It was my 40th birthday and my husband John decided to surprise me by taking us both to a class at the Langford studio. It was a surprise all right – for both of us! It was an amazing and memorable experience. I knew right away that I would be returning again and again.
Years of running, aerobics and weight training, little to no stretching combined with huge amounts of stress had created incredible tension in my body. Three pregnancies had played havoc as well. An accident at 4 yrs of age had created a chronic spinal condition (L5 completely ossified into my sacrum over time) I would suffer from painful sciatica that would come and go randomly. At the time I worked as a deep tissue massage practitioner and was suffering with mild carpal tunnel syndrome. My feet, legs and hips were very tight when I first started practicing. I felt the benefits to my lower body immediately, and after about a month of regular practice the tension in my jaw, neck, shoulders and arms began to slowly ease. After class I felt lighter and more relaxed. Through practicing the Bikram method yoga and attending the teacher training I learned the truth – we create our own reality.
Compassion and energy are a key to my teaching style. All that is required is that you show up. Day to day it changes, but not if you don’t show up. My paid body no longer controls my life. When I am in pain for some reason, practicing slowly allows things to shift and there is relief. I practice loving my body, enjoying my practice and having patience and trusting the process.
My goal in the hot room is to enjoy myself, and to be calm, which for me can be challenging. Everything changes and shifts in life, nothing is constant except the breath. Yoga creates and supports the optimal structural alignment of the body when it is practiced correctly and regularly. My body is more resilient and able to handle stress. I base that knowledge on 12 years of continuous practice. I have three grown daughters, 4 grandchildren, an amazing husband. I am ever grateful for my network of support without which I could not do what I do. At 52 years old I look and feel younger than I did when I started yoga. Welcome to my Yoga Loft. Please make yourself welcome and ask me if you have questions or concerns. I wish you patience, joy and blessings on your yoga journey. Namaste
Westshore Project Development
I am a devotee of the Original Hot Yoga. I started practicing the Bikram method yoga the day before my 46th birthday at the Langford studio with my wife Jacqueline. I was skeptical at the time but Jacqueline had wanted to try the yoga for a while. I had pretty much convinced myself that it wasn’t for me, as I was not very flexible, was 46 years old and had some injuries including a torn and dislocated shoulder and torn ACL in the right knee. I had recovered from many broken bones including neck, feet, hands, a few ribs. In short, after many years of contact and international level sport, lots of things hurt in the mornings!
I attended this class wearing a knee brace and a bathing suit! I was fairly sure that I wouldn’t get much out of it. After 3 classes I felt better in the mornings than I had in many years and after 2 months of regular practice I was able to continue my Martial Arts training and competing without the knee brace for the first time in 4 years. After about a year or so I was enjoying pain free weeks and that cinched my commitment to Yoga.
I completed the Bikram method yoga teacher training in the spring of 2011 at 52 years old. I am currently still working in construction, as a private contractor currently acting as the Senior Estimator and a Project Manager for a mid island marine, pile driving and deep foundations company. I completed Tough Mudder in Whistler shortly after my 55th birthday!
I maintain a regular practice, at least 3 classes per week. I teach a couple of times per week as well. This practice has helped me in ways that were inconceivable at the beginning. Initially the postures alleviated pain as I managed to realign fascia, muscle tissues and joints. Once I started getting past the physical pain of just being inside my body, the meditative aspect achieved through the structure of the series began to give me a mental break from the obligations and stresses that come with my busy life. I believe that this Hot Yoga has permitted me to managed my journey through PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) and the associated dependencies that often accompany this condition.
The series and concepts are often copied, because Bikram method yoga works. The other classes I am enjoying at the studio only add to my enjoyment of the Bikram class. Nothing that I know of provides the benefits of the original Hot Yoga Series of 26 postures and 2 breathing exercises in a 40 degree room.
My name is Kimiko Foster, I took my first Bikram Yoga class in January 2008 and began a regular practice a year and a half later. For me everything changed after beginning a regular practice, I felt better from the inside out, which put a whole new definition to beauty. I gained this awareness of self that I had never experienced before. I started to take interest in my own well-being, my health, my habits, and a living a balanced life. I have heard in the hot room many times that practicing Bikram Yoga is the process of learning to love yourself, its awkward at first, you feel dizzy and nauseous, its normal to feel weird, weird to feel normal, you can’t predict your class, but you know its always worth it. I know that no matter what my monkey mind tells me, this yoga is here to take care of me and that’s really reassuring.
Everyone is so hard on themselves in the world today, mentally and physically. To come into the hot room for 90 minutes and focus on personal health and growth is a beautiful thing to witness and be apart of. If I can offer students what this Yoga has given me, I will call it a win at the end of the day.
We are unique! Each of us has an individual story which brought us into the hot room and each story is as unique as our individual experience on the yoga mat.
Here’s a brief snapshot of me- Carole Gosse – the person behind the yoga teacherJ
Along with teaching yoga, I am also an instructor at Camosun College teaching in Bachelor of Business Administration degree, majoring in Human Resource Management & Leadership. I also teach part-time in Continuing Education’s Leadership Development Certificate Program, specializing in leadership studies and adult learning development.
I have a Master’s degree in Leadership and Training (MA) from Royal Roads University, a Bachelor degree of Arts in Communications and Psychology (BA) from SFU, and I am a Certified Human Resource Professional (CHRP) through the Human Resource Management Association of BC & Yukon.
Prior to Camosun College, I spent 15 years as a Director of Human Resources for six different Fairmont Hotels and Resorts both in Alberta and BC. A career highlight for me was being the opening Director of HR for the Fairmont Waterfront hotel in downtown Vancouver, and ending my hospitality career as the HR & Training Director at the Fairmont’s Chateau Whistler Resort.
Although I enjoyed an exciting career in hospitality in Human Resources, I was under a great deal of stress and pressure, raising my young family and working 55 to 60 hours per week. My lifestyle left me in poor health, overweight with precious little time devoted to my health and wellness.
At 48 years of age I came into the hot room terribly unfit, extremely fatigued and suffering from tension headaches and high blood pressure. For the first while, I struggled with each and every posture, often unable to finish the class. However, after most classes, I felt relaxed, peaceful and content– a glowing feeling of well-being and relaxation that would last for days.
So, I came back again and again & soon realized this sense of wellbeing was my mind and body finally connecting but more importantly I was finally giving myself the time and space to be with myself for myself. As a commitment to my continued health, I became a certified Bikram Yoga teacher at 52 years and have enjoyed teaching Bikram yoga on a part time basis for three years and counting.
As your yoga teacher, I am committed to sharing my love and passion for this yoga and all the benefits that comes with a regular, consistent practice. I am also committed to building a strong yoga community at the West shore studio, with a focus on continued health & wellness.
See you all in the hot room soon!
Almost 9 years ago I did my first Bikram Yoga class. I was in love. I applied for the front desk position that same day and was fortunate enough to get it. I felt like I had come home. I have met the most amazing people, who have since become like family. In 2008 I went to teacher training in Acapulco Mexico and since then I have enjoyed teaching as much as practicing. With the ups and downs that the last ten years have brought me, yoga has been my anchor. It has helped to keep me strong, flexible and sane. With my most recent endeavors to continue my education, and teach in a different capacity, I am seeing how this yoga has paved a path in my life from which I continue to explore. What I love most about teaching is seeing other people discover how yoga can change their lives. Whether it be physically, emotionally, mentally or spiritually, we all come here for our own reasons and continue to come back as the many benefits reveal themselves. I look forward to seeing what the next decade of teaching and practicing will bring.
I was first drawn to yoga as a young girl. Throughout my life yoga has rooted me and carved the path into deeper spirituality, physical strength and power, as well as a stronger awareness within myself and the environment. Following my Yoga Teacher Training I felt I had to learn everything I possibly could about the body and mind, and took up the two year Diploma of Exercise and Wellness at Camosun College, wishing to pursue my passion for health, wellness, and body understanding still further I completed my Bachelor Degree of Athletic and Exercise Therapy and am now a Certified Athletic Therapist and Strength and Conditioning Specialist. I teach Yoga frequently and work predominantly teaching yoga to high level athletes and clients seeking rehabilitation. My passion to learn about the body mind and soul continues without cessation and I am honoured at every opportunity to teach.
My Bikram yoga practice began in 2006 after the devastating loss of a child. I was in rough mental and physical shape and quite frankly, ready to give up. A dear friend recommended that I try Bikram yoga and it is a good thing, because it saved me from a slippery decent into depression and self loathing. I’ve often said that Bikram yoga saved my life…because it did. I was hooked from day one! The physical and mental release was tremendous and I began to slowly heal my body and mind. I’ve always believed in self-help rather than relying on external elements to treat what ails within, thus Bikram yoga was the right prescription for me at the time. In almost 8 years of consistent practice, I’ve managed to develop a stronger, more resilient mind and my body has reached strength and flexibility levels that I scarcely imagined. To top it off, the benefits keep coming! I feel challenged every time I step into the hot room, which is the right prescription for me always.
Hatha Flow Description
This practice will tap into the strength and flexibility that you have achieved through your Bikram practice and allow you to explore complementary asana. The Hatha Flow class focuses on upper body and core strength as well as spinal flexibility. Sun salutations and Vinyasa flows followed by Hatha Yoga poses create a dynamic, energizing class. After achieving a level of comfort with the Hatha Flow class, you will likely experience improvements in your Bikram practice.
I am madly in love with life. It is my intention to share this love with my students to inspire them to fall in love with themselves, with their life, and with the infinity of yoga— through movement, through stillness, breath, and through life. My classes are a balanced infusion of heart, playfulness, inspiration and hard work.
Years ago, yoga saved my life. In my quest of healing from years of childhood trauma, mental and neurological illness, I found yoga. In a very short time, the effects of yoga were creating profound and miraculous changes to my mind, health, body and life. Within just one month of consistent practice, I was medically seizure-free, drug-free and free from the chains of severe depression and self-harm.
Since then, this yoga journey has taken me across the world; from living in an ashram in northern India, to meditating in the jungles of Thailand, to pilgrimaging through the Himalayas of Nepal; studying yoga and other holistic healing modalities.
Yoga enlightens my body and mind, teaching liberates my spirit.
When I am not teaching, you’ll find me on my own yoga mat, exploring the island, at the ocean, cycling | swimming | hiking | learning to ride a motorbike. I’ll have a journal in my lap, sipping a tea, or creating healthy new vegan concoctions. I will be playing my guitar around a campfire, cuddling the handsome bearded man of my life, or indulging in deep heart-to-hearts with my beloved friends and family.
I am forever grateful for the teachings of yoga, and the opportunity to share them with the world. Namaste!
I first came to yoga for the physical benefits but fell in love with it for the amazing effect it had on me mentally. The fact that I could go somewhere just to breathe and ground myself in the present moment was something I at first didn’t even know I needed, but soon came to rely on as a part of everyday life. Yoga has brought me awareness not only of my body but also my mind and spirit, as well as shown me how they are all interconnected. By teaching yoga I hope to help guide my students to what countless others have passed on to me – peace of mind, strength, balance, and focus. A practice both on and off the mat.
In the spring of 2015 I traveled to India for two months, during which time I completed my 200 hour Ashtanga & Vinyasa Flow certification. It was an incredible experience to learn from both Indian and Western teachers while completely immersing myself in the practice of yoga. To those of you who come to my class, thank you! I am so excited to share my knowledge with you while also learning from you in the process. In the wise words of Pattabhi Jois: “Practice and all is coming.”
In September 2003 I moved with my husband and three children from Bristol, England to Sidney BC. I have a background is in Nursing, specifically, working in Geriatrics and Orthopaedics. I also have experience as proprietor of a family owned music retail outlet.
In 2000, at the age of 40, I was diagnosed with a collapsed disk in my neck, osteoarthritis in C5 & C6 and a frozen shoulder. I was prescribed strong pain killers, anti-inflammatories and physiotherapy. Although I wanted to maintain an active lifestyle, I found that I could no longer swim or cycle without aggravation. I tried other activities, but to no avail. When a local hot yoga studio opened in 2006 I tried with trepidation something new and found that it felt good. With the implementation of a regular yoga practice, my decrepit body creaked less and less as I stretched into a new lease on life. Once I committed to a daily practice, my attitude changed, no longer in fear and looking forward to “eventually or in the future.” I am happy to say that the future is here; I’ve seen it! The chronic pain has eased and I am no longer on medication.
I am taking an active role in my ongoing good health and my hope is that I inspire and encourage you to do the same.
“You are never too old…”
The Yoga Loft community consists of a group of caring individuals who inspire hope and strength into my every day life. The teachers as well as the yogis that I practice beside are some of the toughest people that I’ve ever met. Their stories are all different but what they have in common with me is that, regarding self realisation, they have found the ultimate tool of personal resilience. In my 10 years of gymnastics training I had endured two serious neck injuries, busted knees and wrists, sprained ankles, a hematoma to my quadricep and many unpleasant encounters with the balance beam. It was in January of 2009 that my worst injury occurred. Partially due to tight chest and shoulder muscles, I had an accident that damaged my long thoracic nerve, leaving me with very little mobility in my right arm, no feeling in my little finger, and an enduring pain in my shoulder and back. Needless to say, I was devastated as fear overwhelmed me and I believed that my street dancing and snowboarding days were over.
Physio therapy and chiropractic treatments did not give me the same pain relief that hot yoga did, and so I decided to commit to the Bikram method classes as a regular practice to combat my depression and weight gain. In 4 years, Bikram yoga has grown back nerves, broken down scar tissue and squashed person insecurities. I tell you with confidence that Bikram yoga, and hip hop music, saved my life.
I wanted to try hot yoga, but I was too scared. What if it is too hot? What if I’m not strong enough. What if I am not flexible enough, I thought. For two years, I drove past and glanced at the hot yoga studio on my way home from work, before I worked up the courage to walk though the doors to inquire about taking a class. My first class was very difficult – both physically and mentally. The instructor told me all I had to do was breathe, stay in the room, and take it really easy. Just following those instructions was tough on me.
Never had I sweat so much in my life – not even during any sort of physical activity or sport that I had participated in over the years! I kept going even though it was challenging, but over time the mental chatter dwindled in my mind. I started feeling a vibrant energy in my body. I noticed that I slept better at night, and more importantly, I learned how to breathe again. I was so out of touch with how to breathe properly throughout the day. I realized that before hot yoga, my breathing was shallow, but not anymore.
Now each time I practice, the feeling of release of tension from my mind is the single-most important reason why I love this series so much. It gives me an opportunity during my day where I don’t have to think about anything except what I’m doing at that very moment in time. I became a yoga teacher because I want other people to feel the benefits of yoga practice. The feeling you get from investing in yourself is wonderful, and by doing this activity for yourself, you are better able to shine your light for others too.
Shelly became a certified yoga teacher in February 2014, and is registered with the Yoga Alliance. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Victoria. She thoroughly enjoys travelling and has lived on three different continents. She loves cooking, gardening and being outdoors.
She has a very grounded, calm teaching style. And she hopes that you will feel calmer, worked out, and better able to connect with your breath after taking her classes.
Originally from Edmonton, Michele spent most of her life there. Having a work opportunity to move to beautiful Victoria and its Westcoast yoga friendly lifestyle did not take much convincing!
Michele has practiced various types of yoga for 15 years. A variety of styles from; Hatha, Iyengar, Ashtanga and Bikram. A very power, cardio style of yoga appealed to Michele for a long time, until she discovered Yin. Life outside of the studio is very hectic and fast paced. Yoga calms the mind, the body and emotions. “Once I hit the mat I can almost forget about life outside the studio, truly a Yin/Yang benefit!”
Michele completed her yoga teacher training in February 2015. Yin yoga is a calm, slow paced, relaxing class. We work on relaxing our overlying muscles in order access the deeper connective tissues, the tendons, ligaments and fascia. Tightness in the deeper tissues can lead to decreased mobility and flexibility in our bodies.
“I teach for the love of teaching, from the heart.”
I think this describes me the best. Valuing the balance and awareness that yoga & teaching have provided me with and being grateful to share the love, fun and enthusiasm with others.
I started my teaching experience with step, aerobic and toning classes in 2004 as a certified instructor. After a while and literally by (knee) accident, I discovered the benefits of yoga for myself. And loved it! Curious to learn more, I became internationally certified for BodyBalance/BodyFlow™ (a unique blend of Tai Chi, Yoga & Pilates) in 2007.
I completed my previous fitness trainings with RYT-200 hour Yoga Teacher Training Program, the highest of standards of South Okanagan Yoga Academy (SOYA; RYS registered yoga school) and upgraded to RYT-500 as a Wholistic Ayurvedi Yoga Teacher. Furthermore my credentials include YACEP (Yoga Alliance Continuing Education Provider) as well as the qualification as E-RYT-200 Yoga Instructor (Experienced Yoga Teacher; 1,000 teaching hours taught in 2 years only).
In October 2013 I completed my iRest® Yoga Nidra Level I training (Integrative Restoration) in Banff, a concept developed by Dr. PHD Richard Miller. His protocol is currently being used in 35 VA facilities in the states and helps people to find inner peace and relaxation again.
I’m grateful to offer my services at various teacher trainings as a guest teacher and since 2015 I offer a Yin Yoga Training 32 hours to everybody who wants to learn more about this wonderful practice.
Currently I find myself as a E-RYT500 teacher and YACEP for Yoga Alliance, meaning Continuing Education Provider. (people who takes trainings with me receive points to keep their certification by Yoga Alliance).
The teachers I had the chance to study with and that inspired and continuously mentor me are:
Marion Mugs McConnell
Paula Carnegie Fehr
Bernie Clark & Diana Batts
Yoga is a lifestyle for me, happening on and off the mat.