How did you begin teaching at ZUM?
My husband Ivo, who provided some fitness equipment for the first Zum facility on 5th Ave, first introduced me to ZUM. I actually began as a participant taking Joe’s class primarily. I loved ZUM’s approach to movement and the community, and quickly developed friendships with many of the staff members.
Although I loved the bright white, warm, cozy mindbody space at the old location, I only practiced yoga there a handful of times. Peter asked me to join the ZUM team as a yoga teacher when this new facility was opened, and I have been teaching here ever since.
It’s difficult to imagine ZUM yoga without you! You’ve really been instrumental in cultivating our yoga program. How has that experience been for you?
Thank you. Yes, classes used to be very small and yoga was not the first thing members sought out. As yoga grows in popularity, more people have begun to understand the endless benefits of this practice. I still think though that some members are still a little shy to walk up the stairs to the body-mind studio. There’s this beautiful space to discover up there, but the climb can be intimidating. Be courageous and come join us! As we’ve grown yoga at ZUM, we’ve tried to create a diverse team with a common thread of knowledge, expertise, and passion.
And what a wonderful job you’ve done! Speaking of passion, how did your passion for yoga first begin?
Again, I was introduced to yoga by Ivo. A business opportunity presented itself that would move our family from Italy to the U.S. He came over about six months prior to get settled in and prepare the new foundations for me and our son Manu to join him. During that time, he was excited to learn that yoga was much more accessible in the States than in Italy. We had practiced a few times, but there was only one yoga studio and it was a 20 minute drive, so we didn’t go often. Ivo called and said, “Yoga is everywhere here! You’re going to love it!”
Upon arriving in Seattle, I dove right in, practicing 4-5 times/week at a gym in downtown. One day an instructor didn’t show up, and the manager asked me to teach class. I was terrified, but I taught anyhow and it felt like a natural thing. In fact shortly thereafter, I began a 3-year yoga apprenticeship with Lee Atwell in Magnolia. I ended up working at the studio for 5 years. Then in 2007, I went to LA to study with Shiva Rea, completing over 800 hours between teacher training and teaching assisting.