Describe your morning routine.
I usually sit in a vegetative state for half an hour watching BBC breakfast and drinking coffee. Then I’m okay to make a start on the day!
What first drew you to yoga/pilates/barre/fitness?
It wasn’t until I got my first desk job that I really saw the benefits of how a yoga practice could improve my wellbeing. Not long into my job I was feeling the stresses of sitting at a desk all day. My back and shoulders were sore and my posture was suffering. 7 hours a day hunched over a computer will do that to you. I took my first yoga class at a local gym in Shoreditch on a recommendation from a colleague and I was mesmerised and in awe of how difficult it was. After all, my preconception of yoga at the time was that it is just fancy stretching. After that first session, my back pain and posture had dramatically improved. I was sold!
Have you always been in this industry? What did you do before?
I still work full time in the publishing industry. It is tough finding a balance between the two, but I am slowly shifting my focus more to the fitness and well-being industry.
What do you do for ‘me time’?
What ‘me time’?
Between my publishing job and teaching yoga, there isn’t much time for myself. However, I dabble in circus arts, training aerial rope and straps when I can. It is such a beautifully brutal discipline that keeps me coming back for more, no matter how bruised I get. I really admire the strength, flexibility, agility and creativity it takes to perform circus arts.
Do you find much time for your own practice?
Unfortunately not. I try and squeeze in a yoga class at least once a week. It is a constant battle finding time for myself and my own practice. If I can’t fit in a yoga class I’ll try something else, whether it be a barre class or kettlebell class. Yoga at times can feel repetitive, and I appreciate my own practice so much more when I have variety and contrast in my movement.
What is your philosophy?
My philosophy is to be playful in my practice. Life can be so serious at times, so why not experiment and play in a safe environment, such as a yoga class. It’s okay to laugh, fall over, make mistakes. Have a sense of adventure. Be imperfect. Make your practice joyful, as well as meditative.
If you could send out just one message to your students, what would it be?
Don’t sweat the small stuff! London has a crazy high level of yoga, which can be intimidating to beginners. Yoga is about you and only you! Listen to your body, and if it says don’t do the splits, by God, DO NOT DO THE SPLITS!
Did you enjoy our Q&A with Shaun? Well he has two upcoming workshops:
Be sure to check them out before spots fill up!