The Inspire Yoga Grapevine Team has been assembled and we can’t wait for you to meet them! In this weekly blog series, you’ll meet the instructors who will be Inspire-ing Grapevine to get on their mats. We are excited to introduce you to two Inspire Yoga 200 Hour Teacher Training Graduates, Rachel Swan and Alana Speed!
Rachel is a born and raised Texan who loves almost any outdoor activity; gardening, kayaking, swimming, walking, hiking, running, traveling, and attending live music events. In general, she gravitates towards being on the move.
“This is why yoga was an immediate fit for me. It’s permission to slow down (actually it’s a requirement in life and yoga) but also it’s very physically challenging. It’s a discipline that meets us wherever we are in life; any stage, any age, any size, any level of ability.”
She practiced vinyasa yoga for several years before being approached by an Inspire Yoga teacher who challenged her to think about taking the leap into becoming an instructor herself, With little hesitation, she signed up for the Inspire Yoga 200 Hour Teacher Training and we are so glad she did!
Simple but strong is the way Rachel describes her teaching philosophy. She loves introducing people to yoga and guiding them through the self-discovery that often accompanies the practice. You can expect to move and sweat in her classes while also learning to pay attention to your body before kicking up the pace. Her hope is that each student walks away having learned something about alignment and their body.
“I look soooo forward to the opportunity to learn and grow as a teacher and a yogi with the Inspire Grapevine community.”
I was able to catch a moment with this busy mom and wife and here is some of my conversation with the soulful Rachel:
Who inspires you to be a better person on and off the mat?
“I’m a mom to three wonderful young men who strive to live up to their view of me. They make me brave. They make me strong but also help me to be soft and empathetic. I do most everything differently than I would otherwise, because they’re watching. On the mat, I’m inspired by the person in the room struggling the most but sticking with it.”
That was such an amazing answer that I hate to even ask the next question, but what is your favorite food?
“Oh, I like all food, but my favorite would be southern comfort food.”
I foresee a lot of Babe’s Fried Chicken in our future which always makes my day a little better! What are some small things that make your day better?
“When the house is clean. When the fun is good and comfortable. When I hit a pose in class I’ve never done.”
Rachel will be teaching Slow Flow with her infectious smile on Mondays at 9am and Inspire classes on Tuesday at 10:30am and Wednesdays at 9am.
Alana Speed is a recent graduate from the University of North Texas and Inspire Yoga’s 200 Hour TT Program. She grew up in the Grapevine area and is excited to be teaching in a place that she already knows and loves! Alana first started yoga as a way to deal with stress and anxiety during her sophomore year of college.
“I like to joke and say that I literally landed at the front door of Inspire Yoga Denton, because I didn’t think twice before joining the studio. I felt completely at home! It wasn’t but less than a year later that I signed up for teacher training, and again, I didn’t give it a second thought. I just knew I was meant to grow here.”
Alana has been teaching for a little over a year at Inspire Yoga Denton and the UNT REC Center. In her classes, you’ll find a lot of fluidity; moving with the breath to release all of the kinks and stress that’s stored in the body. You’ll also find lots of her own personal experiences intertwined in themes, a perfect balance of relaxing and being challenged, music that makes you want to sway your hips, and long savasanas…and who doesn’t want that?
When you sit down with a recent graduate, what do you talk about? The future, of course! Here is some insight into the conversation I had with Alana, and as you can tell, her future looks bright!
Congrats on graduating! I’m sure you have been asked this a million times, but where do you see yourself in the next 10 years?
“Gosh, that sounds so far away! I try not to put so much pressure on myself to have this perfect end goal. I know I have a long, winding road ahead of me and I only hope it is full of lots of yoga, patience, and just growing in to the person that I’m meant to be. As long as I’m happy, then I’m up for whatever these 10 years has in store!”
Well, you are wise beyond your 22 years! What is the most heart warming thing you have ever seen?
“I think something that really warms my heart is seeing people have that peaceful smile in savanna. It’s not this huge grin, but everything about them just looks so pure and at ease. I think it’s seeing that moment in people when they realize it’s not about being in this intense, inverted pose. But it’s just about closing your eyes for a moment and taking in all the good. To me, it’s when everything comes together – the practice, the sweat, the whole hour of being challenged – meets the end of its course, where you just get to be grateful to lie down and breathe. I think people have that soft smile because it’s when they realize how content you can be when you slow down and just be with yourself. It gives me goosebumps!”