Vivian Safaris

Founder, BComm, RYT200

<<< BACK TO OUR TEACHERS

The idea of creating a space where families can come together to connect and practice yoga and mindfulness is so exciting. Opening Heart and Mind Yoga with Heather Johnson has brought me back full circle to a seed that was planted years ago. 

 

As a new mom in 2005, I was completely immersed in everything to do with health and wellness. As I navigated parenthood, everything familiar was always shifting, but my yoga and wellness practices remained constant. Because of this and the very supportive people who helped me along the way, I had an incredible experience of being nurtured and cared for and discovered how wonderful it felt to be part of a wellness community. 

 

From this experience, my perspective on parenting was always positive, even when it was the most challenging.  I knew that I wanted to help other new mothers navigate parenthood and feel connected and joyful along the way.

I have always believed in a holistic approach to wellness. I studied holistic nutrition in 2010, with a special interest in children’s health and quickly discovered that how families were communicating, moving and thinking was just as important as what they were eating. Mindful practice was essential to my definition of health, so I began to incorporate yoga into my work with families. 

 

In 2013, I completed my kid’s yoga teacher training with Kid’s Yoga Now and my RYT-200 teacher training at the Alberta Yoga College. When I came across the excellent programs Heather Johnson had created with Yoga Playground I knew that this was a company that I would love to work with. During my time at Yoga Playground, I taught thousands of kids all over the city in schools, daycares, after-school programs, studios and camps, eventually enrolling in the Mindful Schools program and incorporating mindfulness as a focus in these classes.

 

After working with so many Calgary kids, my teaching style has changed and evolved. As a new teacher, I focused so much on the pose, the technical aspects and alignment. Now, I’ve left many of the big poses behind, instead focusing on connecting with each and every student. I love the physical practice of yoga, but I now know that it isn’t the movement, but the stillness that keeps bringing me back.

 

Yoga helps me stay open and flexible, to release in body and mind. I’d like everyone to have the opportunity to experience this. I’ve taught children of all ages and abilities and some days are particularly challenging, but what keeps me dedicated to sharing this practice with children is seeing them tap into their own quiet, peaceful minds. 

 

When I’m not teaching, I am home with my husband, two children and our dog. I love to get out into nature as often as I can. I meditate, sometimes that meditation is a walk in the woods, sometimes it’s quietly cooking in my kitchen. I practice yoga everyday and I try to practice mindfulness in all my interactions. I try. It’s a practice.