The Yoga Production – Interview and Review
Guest post by Rebecca Pearson of ModelTypeFace
I almost don’t want to share this wonderful little class with my Manuka readers! A neat little class, called The Yoga Production, is my favourite Saturday treat to myself. This class is perfectly pitched for a Saturday at noon: chilled enough to relax me into my weekend, and challenging enough to motivate me to get out of bed and active.
At the moment, it’s a hot spot for London’s models – teacher Hollie Holmes modelled a while back, so a lot of her students have shown up to give her their support. However, 2 months later we’re still coming back every Saturday, which shows you how brilliant the classes are – we go because we love the workout!
Don’t be intimidated by the thought of a class full of models – there’s no judgement or competition here, which is why I love it so much. Hollie gives us challenges each week – I’m not sure if I’ll ever manage to leap between my hands from downward dog into sitting cross-legged – and she never forgets a hearty Chair Pose session! But there’s always a very chilled out, friendly vibe so I’m never clock-watching or grimacing through side planks! (much…)
I caught up with Hollie to find out what motivates her and why we should check out The Yoga Production…
The Yoga Production
1) Hello Hollie! What’s your background with yoga?
I discovered yoga at the age of 18 whilst modelling in London. I started to suffer from severe anxiety attacks to the point I couldn’t even think about getting on the tube to go to my castings. I took myself away for 2 months to visit my parents in Johannesburg. It was at that time my mum recommended yoga class with her at the local gym. Whilst in savasana at the end of class I realised it was the first time in a very long time I had relaxed. I lay there crying with the release and freedom I felt. I never looked back and have now been practicing yoga for 6 years.
2) How long have you been teaching?
I have been teaching for 3 years now and hope to teach for the rest of my life.
3) What do you want your pupils to achieve at the end of a class?
It’s hard to say. I feel everyone comes to yoga for different reasons and everyone leaves feeling they have achieved something different. I try to give an all rounded experience and acknowledge everyone as an individual. One person may have come purely for the workout, whereas some people could have come for a deeper more personal and spiritual reason. I hope to make it as versatile as possible so everyone walks away feeling better than they walked in.
4) You always have an emotional aim for each class. Where did that idea come from?
For me it has always been important to set the intention of my practice so I have more than a physical aim. The Majority of the emotional aims come from a section of ‘The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali’. I try to translate them into our day-to-day lives in the 21st century.
I feel it’s important when teaching yoga to incorporate some of the philosophy, as yoga is not just an exercise routine, it is a way of life and the asana (posture or physical practice) is just one of 8 limbs of yoga.
5) How would you describe your classes?
A versatile vinyasa flow tailored to meet everyone’s needs and level of experience. I like to make sure everyone feels they have worked out their mind body and soul yet keep the class light-hearted, because at the end of the day the biggest thing that Yoga has taught me was to live in the moment, love, be happy and appreciate everything in life.
6) What poses do you like to focus on in the class?
I build the class each week with a similar structure to the Ashtanga series. There are sun salutations, 2 extra flows (this is what I like to call them) that include different standing posture. Seated postures, back bends and then inversions. The flow and sun salutations are the most important in my eyes as I have always felt warming the body and getting the blood flowing makes for a safer and ‘stretchier’ practice.
Structure is important but I also like keeping it fresh and incorporating new asana’s each week. Challenge is part of life and learning to deal with it in the right frame of mind helps with when a real situation comes along.
7) How do you feel when you see your pupils improving?
It is by far the most rewarding thing I have felt yet. To know I have helped someone in any way, whether it be to finally touch their toes or even better help them find peace in a situation that seems impossible. That is why I love what I do.
8) The classes are contribution at the moment. Will you be pricing them soon?
I had originally though of only doing the donation payment for the launch month, but it seems to be a good system for the moment. If I do change I will still keep the classes more affordable. Yoga is not something we should have to pay a fortune for.
Thank you so much for your thoughtful answers, Hollie! I really think that this class will grow and grow, because the wonderful atmosphere really does embrace the ethos of Yoga. There are all levels from complete beginner to intermediate attending the class, and each person finds their own challenge in each pose.
At the moment there’s just one class in Shoreditch, in the shop Celestine Eleven – Hollie hopes to have a more central midweek class soon, so stay tuned in to their Facebook group.
Classes are compulsory donation – pay what you feel is appropriate.
I hope to see you there!
4 Holywell Lane