Off the Mat with Rachel Holmes
Off the Mat with Rachel Holmes:
We caught up with yoga teacher Rachel Holmes off the yoga mat for a little interview to learn more about what makes this soft-spoken, yet very powerful, person tick.
TYS: What are your yoga classes like? What do you love teaching?
RH: I like to keep my classes moving in a mindful way and keeping a steady pace so that energy can keep moving and blockages can be cleared. I like to break down and teach more complex asana so that students really learn how to do them and understand what should be happening in the body. I love teaching asana that people feel are too challenging for them, which differs from person to person. If I can allow someone to realize that they are more capable, stronger, supple than they think they are, then that’s a treat for me.
TYS: What kind of students would you recommend taking your class? What kinds of people can you help?
RH: I like curious students; people who are very interested in experiencing and learning. I think any teacher can help a student who is willing to learn. As a student, you can learn from everyone- what to do or what not to do.
TYS: What have you learned personally through your own yoga and meditation over the years? Have you overcome certain obstacles, healed certain injuries or emotional wounds, and grown as a person in specific ways?
RH: I began yoga because it was how a director of mine prepared her company for rehearsal. My practice back then was set pranayam and basic asana mixed in with Pilates. The more I practiced what she taught, the more I began to see what it was doing for me. I was much calmer, in control of my breath and more able to control my thoughts and emotions. From there, I began studying all over the city learning as much as I could. I found through proper alignment how yoga could heal and prevent injuries from dance saving me lots of money on chiropractic work.
TYS: What’s your current favorite asana?
RH: My favorite asana is urdhva dhanurasana because I love the feeling of opening up the entire front body, the knees and the sternum moving away from each other and the backs of the legs engaging.
TYS: What would you do if you weren’t a yoga teacher OR what’s your other job?
TYS: What’s your favorite ski run/hike/walk/run, etc. in Jackson Hole?
RH: My favorite hike is Trail Creek. It’s so beautiful, full of nature sounds, and I don’t see many people along the way so I always feel like I’m getting the chance to reconnect.
TYS: What three things are you most grateful for?
RH: I am most grateful for my family and friends, where I live and what I get to do with my time.