Name: Jessica Wiehle
Hometown: Maple Grove, MN
Classes taught at Heat: Heat A on Wednesday nights at 7 and 830 and aromatherapy workshops
How long have you been teaching? 2.5 years
Why became a teacher? I became a teacher because yoga has been so transformational for me that I wanted to help guide others through the same transformation. Yoga is one of those things I find I gain a lot more from when I "give it away" to others. There are days when I know something is missing. I go to teach and I leave with my bucket filled. So though it might sound selfish, giving it away is part of what moves and invigorates me.
Favorite pose and why? Oh wow, this will be a difficult decision. I love one leg balancing poses because of how profoundly they can fine tune the mind and the body and bring about a sense of calm and accomplishment at the same time. My favorite would be Ardha Chandrasana. I also love a good heart opener like Urdhva Dhanurasana because it is physically and emotionally liberating.
Favorite tune to hear in class? I love diversity. I try to make my playlists from a combination of inspiring tunes, meditative beats and soothing sounds. So when I go into a class that has that same diversity, I am happy. I also like it when a teacher's playlist represents who they are - it allows me to connect with them not only though yoga but the music they chose.
Motivational tip or favorite quote? Nothing changes if nothing changes.
Advice to beginners? Embrace humility. Learning this skill early on is what allows the beginner to remain optimistic in the face of challenge. Learning the art of yoga is a journey and not something you will ever master. The truth is we all must remain humble in our practice because every day is different and regardless of skill, there is no conquering yoga. A new yogi with the understanding that growth is easier when we allow ourselves to learn through mistakes - will indeed be very successful in their practice.
Where can we find you when not at Heat? When I'm not at Heat you can find me with my family or working hard on my aromatherapy and cosmetic companies I am buliding. I also might be in my organic garden or in my kitchen cooking up healthy meals.
What do you emphasize in your class? What would you like students to gain from your class? I emphasize the finding of one's self through the journey of yoga - and often in the poses. I want my students to be comfortable, challenged, and walk away from each class with a little more confidence than when they arrived.
Tell us about other jobs (other than yoga teacher) that you do or what you did before teaching yoga:
I spent 7 years working as a paralegal in the area of family law. I did a lot of research and writing and enjoyed this career but eventually I grew out of it and longed for something more. I naturally love to learn and do so I myself natural cosmetic chemistry and medical aromatherapy (which I was already studying and have for ten years now) and learned that I am an entrepreneur at heart. I started my businesses in 2012, coincidentally as I was starting to find myself along the path of yoga.
What have you learned about yourself, on the mat, that is applicable to life off the mat?
I have learned to listen to myself and give my thoughts and intuitions the credit they deserve. A lot of teachers will tell you to "listen to your body". I learned to listen to that voice inside that told me to back off because I wasn't strong enough to take the pose further or, that I could challenge myself because a pose was getting to easy for me. This same voice allowed me to learn how to trust myself and my inner intuition - to listen to and have faith in myself. I used to be indecisive and doubt myself, but now that has been replaced with confidence and a better understanding of myself and the world around me.
What difference have you noticed in your body or overall health since practicing yoga?
Everything has changed. I used to exclusively weight train and what I love about yoga is I get the same satisfaction but with the added elements of breath, stretching, cardio, heat and mediation wrapped within the same hour. My legs and arms are longer and leaner vs. the bulking that can happen from too much leg training on the weights. And when I learned how to do yoga properly (how we teach at Heat), and learned how to engage all the right places - that is when everything changed - I mean every part of my body. And it happens fast - if you give it the effort it deserves. My focus, emotional stability, confidence and spiritual health have all vastly improved from my yoga practice as well.