Yoga helped Zoe Marlowe find stillness from a busy hectic life
- NAME: Zoe Marlowe
- AGE: 49
- OCCUPATION: Yoga Teacher
- YOGA YEARS: 10
Why did you start yoga
My journey into yoga began in 2014 after we had completed a major renovation project on our family home. My life felt like it was spinning at 100mph and I couldn’t keep up with life’s demands. Juggling a relocation, three children, a dog and a house build. Looking back to my childhood, and through my teenage years and then into my twenties and becoming a parent, I had always worked and moved at that same speed.
I had buried my anxieties by having fun and keeping busy, but as the children got older and life’s demands seemed to become more, I started to feel the pressure of juggling everything. Cracks started to show. I was exhausted. But I didn’t know how to slow down. My regular runs weren’t giving me enough and my body wasn’t enjoying the brutality of heavy street pounding. I found hot yoga. My muscles loved the heat. My mind loved the stillness and, suddenly, I felt like I could truly shut down the external noise and be still. It became an obsession, every day needing to get to the studio, not wanting to see anyone or do anything until I had practiced. From here, my journey really started to evolve. I wanted to understand about the philosophy; to learn how to breathe properly and meditate. I found a new studio and an incredible teacher, who had been teaching for 20 years. She was soft and gentle, and I started to unravel, but I felt safe. It was such a gift. For the first time ever, I felt as though I had permission to ‘just be’. No expectations, no demands, just be.
Two years later I signed up to do my yoga foundation course with the British Wheel of Yoga. I never wanted to teach, I just wanted to keep learning. But I found the more I learnt the more I wanted to share what I was learning with others.
How has yoga changed your life
I now have a studio in my garden, and I teach 10 classes a week. It’s incredible. I have a whole new life. I do what I love every day, I support and guide people back from illness and injury, I keep people sane (literally!) and I know what I am delivering is absolutely benefiting their physical and mental health. Yoga is such a gift and one I will continue to share up until I can’t! Yoga really is for everyone.
Best yoga moment
Last summer I was invited to teach at The Wellbeing by The Lakes Festival in Dorset and I was so nervous. I was asked to take a class in the afternoon on the main stage and this terrified me. Totally out of my comfort zone. I nearly cancelled, but I thought, nerves come from the same place as excitement so go for it and embrace this new challenge. I was met by a lady who showed me how to set up my microphone — I felt like Madonna! I nearly passed out! But three girlfriends I knew turned up, sat on the front row and my nerves settled. Would anyone else come? I was so nervous, but the big tent started to fill up and apparently, I was told that my class had sold out…I couldn’t believe it! I delivered my class, minus the microphone… instead, I connected to my heart and what felt natural and delivered a class that was well received and that I was proud of. A moment of magic and gratitude flowed in, and I felt so proud I had managed to hold space for so many; it felt truly wonderful.
The Bhagavad Gita explains: Yoga really is the journey of the self, through the self, back to the self. It can bring us peace of mind, a stillness and quietening so we can truly be present and listen to the messages we are receiving from our minds and bodies. To be in tune with what you need on a physical, emotional and spiritual level only comes from moments of stillness. Yoga allows us space to listen. Yoga really is for everyone. If you have never done it, have a go, it may change your life!
Connect with Zoe Marlowe on Instagram @zoemarloweyoga