MEET COLLEEN MEIER
Colleen Meier is the teacher behind 1948's ever-popular Yoga Flex class. This week, Colleen will work with workshop participants to explore the relationship between yoga and the Flyknit principle of PERFORMANCE.
We spoke to Colleen about snowboarding in Vancouver, falling in love with London, and the life-enhancing properties of yoga.
Where did you grow up? What was it like?
Vancouver, Canada. It was an ideal place to grow up in many ways really. I was able to grow up snowboarding most weekends from a young age at Whistler which was so much fun. I went to a high school that had a programme available for sports people- one that let me do all the academic classes in the mornings and my ballet training in the afternoons!
When did you move to London?
I moved here in 1999 to study with an amazing ballet teacher who is American – John Prinz.
What were your first impressions of the city?
I had no expectations but practically as soon as I landed at Heathrow I fell in love with the city!
What do you do now?
I work as a freelance Sports Therapist at a private gym in Mayfair. I do strength and conditioning as well as injury rehabilitation.
How did you get into yoga?
A friend of mine who took ballet classes with me in Colorado got me into it. Her Mum owned a beautiful and huge studio in Boulder so she brought me along one day. It was Bikram yoga (the ‘hot’ yoga’) which I don’t practice anymore but it was the ‘gateway’ to Ashtanga for me!
How did you first start working with Nike?
My friend Shaniqwa Jarvis – who is a photographer and has done work for Nike and basically knows everyone in East London – introduced me. She actually came up with the whole idea and just told me to do it. I usually do what she says! She’s an amazing person who I wish lived in London and not NYC.
What inspires you?
Many people inspire me on a daily basis. I am often inspired by my clients as well as those who I work with. I feel that I am very blessed to interact with so many types of people every day.
Tell us more about Yoga Flex.
Yoga Flex is open for everyone and I think it has worked well so far by introducing yoga to people who otherwise wouldn’t have given it a try. I have three professional lifters who are coming regularly and a lot of men who use it in conjunction with weight training and football. It is a very casual vibe so people can ask questions and not feel uncomfortable.
Why are you excited to be part of the Flyknit Collective?
Nike are always ahead of the game- I am pretty much head to toe in Nike every day because of my job so I feel very close to the brand! I’m excited to be a part of such a creative event that helps my local community too. Such a big company can have a real impact. The people that are involved have so many amazing ideas.
What do you hope to give/get out of the week?
I hope I can share some of my experience with the younger people who are involved and I can take some of their creative juices!
How are you going to explore the principle of ‘performance’ with the workshop group?
Yoga helps give people focus and a clarity of mind which can be used with whatever type of performance is needed – sport, dance, art – all can benefit from practicing yoga. The main idea is to enhance performance from learning yoga.
How are yoga and performance interlinked?
Yoga develops grace and focus which I think are naturally a big part of any performance.
How does yoga help you perform better in everyday life?
Aspects of yoga can be done anywhere, anytime. It helps clear the mind of unnecessary thoughts so you have more room to focus on the important things.
What are your hopes and plans for the future?
I have quite a few plans in the pipeline but you will have to wait and see….
YOGA DEVELOPS GRACE AND FOCUS, WHICH I THINK ARE NATURALLY A BIG PART OF ANY PERFORMANCE