LOCALS ONLY SERIES
Interviewee: Julie Ferguson, Yogi/Fitness Educator
Company: CorePower Yoga | GFit | The Rose
Locations: CorePower Yoga 3918 30th St Ste 110, San Diego, CA 92104
MEET JULIE, OUR FAVORITE YOGI & FITNESS EDUCATOR
Jaclyn Najjar: How long have you been in the yoga/fitness industry?
Julie Ferguson: I completed my yoga teacher training in 2011 through Core Power Yoga, and have been teaching ever since! In fact, I just received a card the other day congratulating me on teaching more than 1000 classes since I started!
JN: What inspired you to get into this industry?
JF: I left my full time job at the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business (now Chicago Booth) in 2010. Like so many people, I was pretty miserable in my job and needed a break to re-evaluate what direction I wanted to take my career. During my “fun-employment” I bought a Groupon for an unlimited month of classes at a heated yoga studio in La Jolla, and would drive up there several times a week. One day, during savasana (the best part of class!!!), it hit me: I wanted to help people feel a sense of calm and help lift a weight off their shoulders. That was how I felt after each and every yoga class. So, 8 years later, here I am.
"I wanted to help people feel a sense of calm and help lift a weight off their shoulders"
JN: One of your specialties is group fitness classes. What do you love about teaching yoga and fitness?
JF: I personally find group fitness classes more fun and motivating. So, I try to incorporate those elements into my teaching style. There’s a sense of community about a group class, where everyone has a shared experience, regardless of their ability or skill level.
JN: What are some simple ways that people can incorporate more health, yoga, and fitness into their lives, if they are new, or if they are trying to get back in the game?
JF: First, I think it is really important to find something that you enjoy doing: surfing, hiking, running, boxing, weight-lifting, swimming, etc. Working out should be FUN, not a chore! Second, there is no need to work out for 2 hours, or even 1 hour, 15-30 mins of exercise can be beneficial to everyone’s health. Lastly, find someone to buddy up with. Having accountability partner will help with motivation and also create a sense of camaraderie about the whole thing.
JN: You also work with aspiring MBA students. What advice do you have for keeping centered while in career and life transitions?
JF: I think one of the most important aspects of living a balanced life during times of transition is to have a few things that remain constant (like yoga!). During these times, it can be easy to feel like you need to overhaul everything, but take it one piece at a time, and try to focus on the positive aspects of your life that are touchstones to keep you grounded.
"One of the most important aspects of living a balanced life during times of transition is to have a few things that remain constant...try to focus on the positive aspects of your life that are touchstones to keep you grounded."
JN: Although you teach a variety of awesome classes, we’re really excited to learn more about YogaMosa. Tell us more!
JF: YogaMosa is a fun collaboration with the beautiful ladies at The Rose Wine Pub (right around the corner from Graffiti Beach). The idea is to combine yoga with brunch, and mimosas of course! We start with a 1 hour, all levels yoga class, followed by a full brunch with a mimosa and coffee. Over the years, we have created a wonderful community of people that come to the event, from mothers and daughters, to best friends, to neighbors. But I think one of my favorite stories is about a group of 4 women who were new moms. YogaMosa was a way for them to get together, without the babies, to enjoy time together, as women going through a shared experience. As YogaMosa has grown, so to has the community, and now we typically put together tables of 6, 8, or 10 people so that everyone can hang out after class, share a good meal, and cheers to the weekend.
JN: You teach at both CorePower and GFit, what classes and programs do you offer?
JF: At CorePower I teach their heated vinyasa classes, from a beginner (non-heated) class, to the advanced level classes that combine fun things like inversions (headstand anyone?). At GFit I focus on a total body workout, incorporating everything from cardio to strength training, stretching and meditation. We use all sorts of fun equipment such as Bosu balls, TRX suspension straps, free weights, weighted balls, battle ropes, jump ropes, and more! I have been with GFit for 5 years, and the sense of community there is really something special. It’s the type of gym that anyone, age or ability level, can walk into and feel welcome and at home.
JN: What other things are you currently working on?
JF: In addition to teaching yoga and fitness classes, along with my consulting work coaching prospective MBA student through the application process, I have been working on starting my own business… It’s been a very SLOW road, but 2018 is the year! Although I can’t really reveal exactly what it is, I developed a yoga accessory product that I hope will benefit every single person that ever steps foot in a yoga studio…stay tuned ☺