Today we’d like to introduce you to Tyla Hairston.
Hi Tyla, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself
My journey to yoga started with dance. I like to say that dance was my first love. I danced as a young child all the way through college at Howard University. Yoga was introduced to me through summer dance intensives in high school, and I quickly fell in love with the practice too.
After being in the competitive dance world for so long, I found that yoga was a very cathartic outlet for me. I enjoyed being able to experience judgment-free movement expression, which is a rare luxury for a dancer who is always auditioning. I also found that practicing yoga had a profound impact on my mental health, helping me cope with symptoms of anxiety and depression.
The true impact that yoga has had on my life is immeasurable. I wanted to be equipped to share those benefits with others, so I decided to pursue yoga as a career path. I completed my 200 hr. Yoga Teacher Training certification in the summer of 2021, registered with the Yoga Alliance, and soon after that launched Genzo, a yoga, health, and wellness brand designed to cultivate peace through mindful movement and intentional stillness.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
The biggest challenge has been Covid-19. When the virus began to spread rapidly in the U.S., a lot of the plans I was looking forward to that year were put on hold, including getting my yoga teacher certification. I planned to study abroad to obtain my certification, but the program that I registered for was canceled shortly after we first shut down. It took me a while to find another program that I felt fit my interests and needs as a new instructor. It was important to me that I completed a yoga training that focused heavily on technique and safety in movement. I also wanted a yoga training that valued yoga as a form of rest and restoration just as much as it valued yoga as a form of exercise.
Looking back, I realize that although it was painstakingly difficult to go through that season of stagnance, everything worked out for the best. When the timing was right, I was able to take a yoga teacher training that had an emphasis on trauma-informed, vinyasa-style yoga. At the same time, I became a certified Social-Emotional Learning Facilitator. The training I took prepared me to create safe and inclusive environments to teach yoga to practitioners of all levels and ages. Since then, I have had the pleasure of teaching an exciting range of practitioners, from preschoolers to elders, and novice yogis to professional NFL athletes.
As you know, we’re big fans of Genzo. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about the brand?
I founded Genzo because I wanted to share my love for yoga and my passion for health and wellness with others. Our mission at Genzo is to cultivate peace through mindful movement and intentional stillness. We focus on creating safe and inclusive environments for folks to practice yoga and get in tune with their physical and mental health. We utilize yoga, meditation, and other fitness practices to stretch and strengthen the body, increase self-awareness, quiet the mind, and relax the nervous system.
Yoga is much more than a simple workout. Research suggests that yoga can have positive effects on mental and emotional wellness, relieving symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression. Research also suggests that yoga relieves lower-back pain, and improves the quality of life for those with chronic illnesses. This is why at Genzo we focus on holistic wellness. We know that yoga has so much to offer folks, regardless of their flexibility or athleticism. That’s why we say, “yoga is for every body.” It is one of our core beliefs. Our job is to help each individual find a flow and cultivate a practice that fits their specific needs.
We offer community yoga classes, virtually and in person, for all levels, as well as private yoga sessions for groups of varying sizes and one-on-one private yoga sessions. We also collaborate with businesses and organizations to provide yoga classes for members of their communities.
What was your favorite childhood memory?
My favorite childhood memory was my eighth birthday party. It was a Dance themed party. We split the guests into two groups, and my two older sisters choreographed dances for each group to learn and perform. Afterward, I put on a bright pink ballet costume with a flowy skirt and sparkly off-the-shoulder straps, and I performed for all my guests to a Disney princess song. For my birthday gift, my parents bought me Marisol, an American Girl Doll that was a dancer like me.
I love this memory because it’s the epitome of who I am. I’m a girl who loves to dance and move freely and share the liberating gift of movement with others.
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: https://www.genzoyoga.com/
- Instagram: @genzo.yoga
- Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYbRMrUpUrVShn-YhH_sfwA
- Other: TikTok @genzo.yoga