The ‘why’ behind Yoga Pavilion

Hi, my name is Alanna. This is a little about how Yoga Pavilion started, why I teach yoga and a unique technique called AntiGravity.

In 2011, I took a year off everything when my mother passed away from lung cancer. In that time, Yoga Pavilion came to life. Mum was pivotal to where I am today. She introduced me to yoga at 16 and it became our thing to do together.

Moments after my mother passed
Sydney Festival Yoga in the Village, Hyde Park

Starting a company and building a yoga school wasn’t a goal I’d envisaged – it was an opportunity I grasped and held on to when I felt there was nothing else. At the time, it was my lifeline. I needed purpose, comfort and a new start. So I combined something that I was good at and loved into a career for myself.

The confidence I had to create a business came from playing and taking risks managing lululemon’s flagship store in Sydney. When the Global Financial Crisis hit, it pushed the team and I even further to succeed. Without this experience, I never would have ventured out on my own.

Lululemon Manifesto
Transitioning from Vampire Pose into Bat

In the same year, I happened upon a YouTube video of a man named Christopher Harrison. He demonstrated a fitness technique in a hammock called, AntiGravity. I was drawn to the endless movements you could achieve with the Harrison Hammock and the desire to feel limitless is what got me hooked. I mean, who doesn’t want to fly?

Without deliberating, I completed the first ever AntiGravity training in Australia by Christopher Harrison himself and since then have became a certified AntiGravity Fitness instructor (Level 5).

I have gone through highs and lows with the business and teaching yoga as my chosen profession. I’ve questioned my worth in more ways than one. Could I do more to contribute? Can I make a difference in the world teaching yoga? Why did I invest so much in AntiGravity when it could all just be a fad… I have minimal professional support and nothing to go by. The few of us that choose to teach AntiGravity after becoming certified were really leading the way in Australia. So I felt like a pioneer.

All sounds a tad heavy, doesn’t it? That can easily happen when you’re bogged down working six sometimes seven days a week.. at the studio… on the business. There’s been countless early morning starts and late nights that roll into one endless day. But it’s all been by choice because I love my work.

I didn’t become a yoga teacher to be popular or rich. Marketing doesn’t come naturally to me and I don’t see people as numbers. It’s tough to earn a living as a yoga teacher and run a small business, especially in a city like Sydney.

Halasana - Plow Pose
Comfortable in front of the camera with my best friend behind it.

But it’s not all doom and gloom. I am proud to be one the longest standing schools offering AntiGravity in Australia and the business has passed the 5 year mark.

Blind faith doesn’t keep me going, it is the positive impact people experience from practicing at the studio. Without any doubt, teaching yoga and AntiGravity does  make a difference in people’s world. When taught well – I see strength, flexibility, balance and mobility improve over time. I hear the physiological and therapeutic benefits in people’s before-and-after stories.

I teach yoga because yoga has taught me so much. All I want to do is share that. We have a huge capacity to evolve and grow when we’re curious and open. I genuinely care and I love to help. Yoga Pavilion is the space I created where I can offer myself and be of service to others.