Seattle Yoga News is on a mission to find and highlight all of the hidden, and maybe not so hidden, gems in the Seattle yoga community and beyond. We want you to learn about their experiences and perspectives, but also a bit more about their personalities, so we have a few fun questions for them. This week’s spotlight is turned towards Kristin Reed.
Seattle Yoga News: What inspired you to become a yoga teacher?
Kristin Reed: Honestly, at first it was just something to do that I knew I would enjoy. Growing up as a gymnast and a dancer I had always been very active, and sitting at desk job was slowly torturing me. I decided that I simply had to find another solution, so I went into teacher training. Not so inspired, right? But then, yoga became my savior.
Not long after I began teacher training my health came crashing down. Years of eating disorders, fierce competition (with myself, mostly), and complete lack of self care brought my life to a screeching halt at the age of 24. As I began the long road to recovery I found that yoga became my safe haven. It provided the space I needed to slow down, get out of my head, rest, heal, and most of all create a loving relationship with myself and my body. So much of what made this possible, I found, were the amazing teachers that were there holding space for me at yoga. I don’t know how many of them even knew what I was dealing with, but that’s what good yoga teachers do. They create a safe, nonjudgmental and inclusive space for their students to be present, get in their bodies, and and work through what they need to in their lives. It was then I realized that I had found my calling without even knowing it. I wanted to become a yoga teacher so that I could hold a safe space for those who need it most.
Seattle Yoga News: What kind of trainings have you pursued?
Kristin Reed: I am a total geek and I love any training I can get to! These might include workshops about alignment, teaching, breathwork, relaxation, neuromuscular re-training, different styles of yoga…. I especially love anything about anatomy and one of my all-time favorite things I have experienced was a cadaver lab through my massage school. It was beyond fascinating! The human body is absolutely awesome, in the truest sense of the word. I am also a Thai massage therapist and I am really interested in Thai technique, element theory and herbal formulas, so I take a lot of trainings in that arena as well.
Seattle Yoga News: What is one piece of advice you always give your students?
Kristin Reed: Find an exhale. I am always reminding my students to find an exhale, and with it invite in a little bit of ease and softening. So many of us are always holding – holding tension, holding emotions, holding thoughts and feelings and all of this extra junk that we don’t need. Not only does this holding not serve us, but it can actively block us from moving forward. Whether physically or emotionally, if we grip too tightly we simply can’t progress. Even when we are super focused and working hard and being strong (which is great!), we need to find that little bit of softness… That little bit of ease and space that provides enough room for us to grow when we’re ready to.
Seattle Yoga News: What is your favorite asana and why?
Kristin Reed: Definitely handstands! I have always loved being upside down. I was upside down so much as child that my parents put me in gymnastics, and it turns out their instincts were right on the money. There is nothing more rewarding and empowering to me than floating up into a handstand and finding that sweet spot – that place of balance where you’re so fiercely focused and working so hard while simultaneously being effortlessly held up by gravity. For me, nothing else compares. Plus, there is always something to work on in handstands. There’s always some new way to get in or out, or some variation to explore if you want to… So fun, and so challenging.
Seattle Yoga News: What is your favorite yoga related book?
Kristin Reed: Well it’s not specifically a yoga book, but I am in love with Journey to the Heart by Melody Beattie. My students love it too and I read it all the time in class! It’s a daily reader full of beautiful meditations, insights and nuggets of wisdom that weave seamlessly into the yoga world. I feel like I never leave home without it.
Seattle Yoga News: What is one thing most people don’t know about you?
Kristin Reed: It has come to my attention that everyone seems to think I am a super calm, cool and collected lady. Just to set the record straight, inside I feel like a hot mess! But seriously, in my head I have just as many thoughts and worries and fears as you do whizzing around all day long. But thank you for thinking I am so zen. That’s what yoga’s for, right?
Seattle Yoga News: Outside of the world of yoga, what are you really passionate about?
Kristin Reed: That’s a great question. I just love…. Being. Experiencing life. Travel, experiencing other cultures, good food, time with loved ones, people watching, nature walking, and cats of course. I am passionate about movement and being in my body and I love modern dance. To me, losing yourself in dance is the closest thing you could ever get to flying. I am also very passionate about bodywork and think Thai massage is so fun and interesting! So I spend a lot of my time with that.
Seattle Yoga News: Where can one take a yoga class with you?
Kristin Reed: I am beyond grateful to be teaching classes and workshops at three fabulous studios right now: Twist Yoga in Edmonds, The Yoga Tree in Fremont, and Community Fitness in Ravenna. For those who love to take their yoga on the road (or across the sea!), be sure to check out my upcoming retreat Yoga Escape Spain: Discover, Relax, Restore in May 2018. Finally, for those interested in taking their yoga to the next level, I am excited and honored to be joining the adjunct faculty for Twist Yoga School’s 200hr Teacher Training Program beginning this January!
We invite you to check out Kristin’s page on the Seattle Yoga News event calendar for upcoming events and classes she is hosting.
Kristin Reed Bio:
Kristin Reed is a 500hr E-RYT and licensed massage therapist living in Seattle, WA. Her greatest passion is helping others connect with and find freedom in their bodies so that they can live life to their fullest potential. Her classes, workshops and retreats emphasize building a solid foundation with strength and proper alignment, while also finding ease in asana and cultivating careful observation of the body and mind. Outside of the classroom she is an ardent Thai Massage practitioner, creating personalized sessions for clients utilizing bodywork and herbal therapies. Find out more about her work at www.precisionbodyworks.netPublished on Sep 17, 2017