Students of the Month: Jennifer & Malia Stisher
If you've joined us at a YogaFit Mind Body Fitness Conference you may have seen Jennifer stringing magnificent malas in the boutique. This mother-daughter duo are BOTH YogaFit trained and here to share their journey with us as the May - Students of the Month.
Hi Jennifer, tell us about your YogaFit journey….
Jennifer: Back when I started out, I was a cycling instructor, I only taught cycling but I always loved yoga- I just didn’t really know where to get started with becoming a yoga teacher. The group fitness director at the gym where I worked, suggested that I take YogaFit's Level 1 yoga teacher training. I worked at Gold’s Gym so I was able to begin teaching right after I received my Level 1 certificate. However, I quickly realized that I wanted/needed much more than just Level 1 so I quickly flew through my 200 hour and then I just kept on going - just kept going until 500 hours. I love every single master trainer. Going through yoga teacher training with YogaFit has been a fabulous transformational experience for me. I talked to my 16-year-old daughter Malia several months ago to see if she would be interested in Level 1, she took her time to decide and then she chose to come to this Mind Body Fitness conference and begin her journey.
Fantastic! How long have you been making your beautiful jewelry?
Jennifer: I got into this for myself. My friends liked it then it just became a business. So for sale two years but I’ve been making jewelry now for about five years. Check out our brand new Facebook page here - https://www.facebook.com/chakraarmour/
Do you help with the jewelry too, Malia?
Malia: Sometimes. I can make the stretchy bracelets because they’re not too difficult, it’s just stringing on beads. I also made the wrap bracelet that I’m wearing which was a little harder and takes more time because the strings are so long. I might make the malas someday, but right now I just don’t want to take the time to sit down and string them.
They do take a lot of time! Are you still in school?
Malia: Yes, I’m a Sophomore in High School.
Very cool! Do you have your own yoga practice?
Malia: I typically go to the hot yoga studio in our town and take their hot flow classes. I’ve been doing yoga since I was really young because when my mom did her Level 1 community service hours she taught at my elementary school class. Then when I was in middle school, I got into yoga for exercise purposes and over the years I’ve just gotten more and more into it.
Wow! Yoga has really followed you through the years. Do your friends go to yoga with you?
Malia: Yeah, but they don’t really do it regularly - they’ll come with me to a class if I invite them.
You’re in Level 1 this weekend, right? Have you thought about what you will do for your community service hours yet?
Malia: Not fully yet, but I may teach to my friends, other kids, and teachers at our high school.
Are you planning to teach?
Malia: Yeah, definitely. I want to complete my 200-hour RYT by my senior year so I can teach wherever I end up going to college.
So did you get to take off school this week to come to the Mind Body Fitness conference?
Malia: Yeah two days! It’s more than I’ll learn in two days of high school anyways. At first, I was excited because I was thinking ‘Sweet! I get to take off school” but then I realized Level 1 is actually harder than school would be! It’s a lot to learn and study these two days.
What was your biggest level 1 takeaway?
Malia: Body awareness. I’ve learned so much more about alignment and realized that I’ve been doing a lot of the foundational poses incorrectly. I now know how to get more safely into the poses and cue others into them as well. I feel like it will help me in my own practice - especially my downward dog.
What was the hardest part?
Malia: Having to teach to people who are older than I am. The group work was intimidating at first but after a few times of teaching Mountain 1, 2, & 3 I started getting more comfortable and doing better. I went into it thinking that teaching yoga would be easy - but as soon as we had to teach a 20-minute class, I flew through it too quickly and didn’t realize the time that it actually takes- that I needed to slow it down.
So have you thought about what you want to do as a “grown-up?”
Malia: Maybe a doctor? Maybe criminal justice? Definitely, something that’s helping other people.
Jennifer: Malia plans to continue on with Level 2 in the next couple of months. We’re also planning to go to the Las Vegas MBF and back here in September for the D.C Mind Body Fitness Conference. We love our #YogaFitFamily! See you again soon!
If you are also a YogaFit Mother-Daughter duo and you would like to share your story please email us PR@YogaFit.com.