Interview with Natasha Thompson
- Core Subject: Hatha Yoga
- Experience: 10+ Years
- Language: English
- Location: Worldwide
- Certifications and Study:
- 500hr YTC in Ashtanga and Hatha
- 500hr YTC in Ashtanga and Hatha
- Yin Yoga Teacher
- Sound Healing Therapist
- Guided meditations on Insight Timer
- Ecstatic Dance DJ
- Motivational writer
- Level 1 Reiki healer
Natasha Thompson is a yoga teacher, inspirational writer, and co-founder of the international yoga and meditation retreat company, Breath of Fresh Air Retreats. What began as a conventional lifestyle in small town Ontario, Canada has radically transformed into a exhilarating adventure abroad. Since 2015, Natasha has travelled to more than 30 countries across the world to share her love of this life-altering practice with others. Whether it's through her elegantly led Yoga Nidra sessions, soothing pranayama practices, or transformational asana classes, Natasha aims to guide her students on a journey home to themselves. Encouraging each person she meets to recognize the awe within themselves, and ultimately discover their very own happy place.
How Long Have You Been Practicing Yoga And Why Did You Start?
I attended my first yoga class about 15 years ago in Canada. I have a long history with ballet dancing and, in the beginning, I sought out yoga purely for physical reasons – putting my body into intricate poses as a means to improve flexibility and strengthen muscles. However, within a few months of practice, I began to experience positive changes on a more subtle level that I didn’t even know existed. It was this notable shift in my emotions and thoughts that initiated my deeper journey into yoga and meditation as a lifestyle, and not just a weekly class
Where Did You Receive Your Training To Become A Yoga Teacher?
Like so many, I felt inspired to travel to the birthplace of yoga itself to immerse myself in a one month 200hr Yoga Teacher Training Program. My teachers, practitioners from India, have dedicated their life to sharing these ancient techniques with the world and were great examples in helping me to better understand yoga as something more than poses and postures. It was this very experience that equipped me with the basic knowledge I required to deepen my practice… from here, the real learning began!
Why Did You Decide To Start Teaching Yoga?
I did not attend that first teacher training program with the intention to instruct to others, instead, as a means to deepen my own practice. However, at some point during those four weeks of yogic immersion I began to think differently. It was as though, in connecting more intently to myself, I was able to feel things I had only previously experienced temporarily through external sources. Yoga has offered me the only tools I will ever need to re-invite sustainable love and aliveness back into my own life. Once I felt and experienced the benefit of these teachings for myself, it became my mission to share them with others so they, too, can live in harmony with themselves and the world around them.
What Is The Aim Of Your Company, Breath Of Fresh Air Retreats?
Breath of Fresh Air was developed from a place of personal experience and global need. In a world that places so much emphasis on keeping busy and accomplishing goals, I can relate to the notion that it can present a challenge in giving oneself full permission to slow down and simply BE. Having felt the immense benefits for myself of retreating into nature, detoxing from my phone, and nourishing my body with healthy food, I began to cultivate mindfulness programs that would allow others to experience the same. It’s unbelievably fulfilling to know that, in simply providing people with a more natural and supportive way of living, they can begin to cultivate positive habits to enrich every aspect of their lives. And, in allowing our own light to shine brighter, we give all those around us the inspiration to do the same - creating happier, healthier interactions with everyone we meet.
Where In The World Do You Feel Is The Best Place To Visit For A Yoga Retreat?
For me, I wouldn’t necessarily say one particular spot on the map exceeds another to host or participate in a yoga retreat. Instead, I believe in the healing power of nature. Going for a walk outdoors, hiking a mountain, and surfing atop a fibreglass board are all forms of “off the-mat” practice and, in my opinion, offer just as many benefits as holding oneself in a downward facing dog.
What Does Yoga Mean To You?
To me, yoga is anything and everything that allows one to exist more intimately and with a deeper understanding of their own self. Listening to even the most subtle of communications from our body and mind in an effort to cultivate a deeper relationship with the world around us.