Today we’d like to introduce you to Samantha B.
Samantha, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
Hello, my name is Samantha and I’m the creator of YOUniversal Yoga, where I get to Instruct yoga classes and Lead Yoga Teacher Training Programs for a living. Other than dancing in my basement as a little girl, I didn’t enjoy the competitive nature of sports very much or feel naturally driven to group afterschool activities/classes that my sisters and my friends seemed to enjoy. Until… A little unconventional in timing, I heard about Yoga from one of my oldest and dearest friends during the summer following my freshman year of college. When we met up, I noticed that while I put on the “freshman 15,” she, on the other hand, had lost the freshman 15lbs; Not only looking fit and fabulous, she also seemed to be glowing. She told me about this cool practice called Yoga and began to show me all these shapes and poses she could perform with her body.
That was almost 20 years ago. I was so inspired that when I came back down to FL to return to College for my sophomore year, I enrolled in my first Hot Yoga Class. It was the most challenging yet invigorating experience to date! I loved it. When the instructor strongly urged me to return the next day for another practice, I humbly agreed. Fast forward a few years of a consistent practice in hot yoga and graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree, I went back to my hometown in NJ, when my father asked me the classic and cliché, question, “So, Sam-what are you going do with your life?”
Blurting out with utter enthusiasm, I said, “I’d like to Be a Yoga Teacher, open a yoga studio, and share the gift of this Yoga practice with as many people as possible. I’d like for more people to connect to their version of happy and love their bodies more.” Even though my biggest fear at the time was public speaking, I told myself that I would have to face that fear to be who I wanted to be and do what I wanted to do. I always felt a pull to South Florida and so after moving back down here post-college, the next logical step, according to dad, was to enroll me in the local college for some business classes.
Soon after, did I meet some of my yoga teachers and mentors, graduating from 2 + intensive teacher training programs, completing some courses in Business at the local college, and working the front desk at my yoga mentor’s yoga studio. The famous saying, “When the student is ready, the teacher appears” became my reality. I also had been dabbling in Energy work called Access Consciousness, which I still practice and continue to facilitate today. Together yoga and energy work helped me conquer my fear of public speaking, so I could journey forward.
Since the start of my yoga teaching career, I felt that If I could just help shine the light for one person in each class, where they felt better post-class, as I did in some way if they felt inspired, felt more at peace, perhaps if they felt more joy with their body after each class, it was cause for celebration. It seemed that one person did, indeed, feel better after each class! One person turned into 2 and 2 turned into more and before I knew it, I was teaching five fully packed Yoga classes a week times 14 “years-ish,” and here we are.
Do I still get butterflies before teaching each class? Honestly, YES… probably just enough to keep me at the creative edge of my yoga teaching career. Over the years, my “life-coaching” tool kit continued to filled up with more goodies and possibilities. On the daily, I chose to change my own outdated self-talk, meditate, and be curious about my choices, about my habits with myself, with my body, and with the world around me.
For many of my daily choices, I practiced asking myself: “is this choice a YES or No?” This daily practice became a discipline and took me out of auto-pilot and into a space of clearer perceiving. At this level of awareness, I could see so- to- speak with a wider lens. Instead of squandering my energy, I chose to practice the art of playful presence with my body, which also allowed me to be more present with others. A trust in the Universe supporting my yesses expanded LARGELY and my self-talk became: “Follow what feels light and TRUST MORE.” I wish I had these tools when I was a kid and or a teenager. My younger self used to feel like such a misfit. These tools, alongside a consistent yoga practice, strengthened my capacity to BE ME-more, regardless of what anyone else thought of me.
Now, as a mom of two little ones, I do my best to practice these tools with them as often as we remember and I do hope they will take these tools into their young adulthood and into their later years, knowing who they really are. While I still taught yoga at other studios, we moved into the coral springs area so that I could set some roots with my husband, raising one kid in pre-school and our other infant at home, who took about three years to sleep through a full night. Any parent could probably relate, when I say, I remember praying and meditating and asking, is this it?
And just when I least expected it, did my Calling-call me. It was time to open a yoga studio near home, near my family, meet and cultivate a kind community and continue this yoga journey with my family and with others. You could say that energized me. Talk about stepping outside my comfort zone and into entrepreneurship. The pull to open the studio and Yoga school-YOUniversal Yoga was so awesomely, uniquely, and joyfully potent. It was an unequivocal YES.
In time, I began meeting so many supportive and wonderful people who, yes, loved practicing the art of yoga as well. The next pull was to LEAD my very first 200hr Yoga Teacher Training, certifying others to do what we all love doing so much and so I did!
Was it easy? NO.
Was as it worth it? YES!
Did I learn as much as I Lead and taught?
And, how does it get any better than that?
Isn’t that what the journey’s about?
So, what’s my favorite thing about this practice of Yoga? Firstly, each class is different. There’s always a chance to gain insight about YOU every time you show up for yourself and for your body. I love the energy that gets created when a group of people comes together to practice yoga collectively; Together, the yoga class becomes a co-creation of more people choosing to be and receive peace, more EASE, and sometimes even more joy. Imagine if more people felt more peace, ease and joy and brought that into their homes on the daily…
Another result worth mentioning about why I love practicing and teaching yoga so much is, is the intention-setting practice in the beginning of each yoga class. When you’re asked to set an intention, it’s putting you into the driver’s seat. It’s during the intention setting that I perceive my inner child awaken and get super giddy for the chance to make a wish. Each time I join a yoga class, I get to make a wish. It’s worth saying again: Another yoga class = another wish. There’s a bit of magic in it… and yes, I choose to trust in this magic!!!
What about YOU? YOUniversal Yoga is place where you are welcomed to BE YOU and cultivate a self-care practice for yourself alongside other people practicing the same, regardless of your experience level. I truly hope you meet YOU and I look forward to practicing yoga and flowing with YOU too! May everything in life come to YOU with Ease, Joy, and Glory.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Some challenges along the way: Having to re-amp the second half of the Teacher Training program to be on online and making sure each trainee got the most of the experience. It turns out they each got to practice teaching even more with additional feedback. That process certainly motivated more organizations for the program and got us up to date with online learning, teaching online and live stream yoga classes, etc. While in-person yoga classes and the events are unlike the virtual world, that experience certainly reminded my staff and me that we couldn’t control everything and to trust more and GO WITH THE FLOW instead of reacting or force certain outcomes.
YOUniversal Yoga – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
YOUniversal Yoga is a Yoga Alliance Registered School. Offering weekly Yoga classes in person and Online (virtually). We host a variety of weekly yoga classes for all levels of yoga practitioners and all bodies: YOUniversal Yoga hosts a variety of yoga classes, like, Hot Yoga Classes, Stretch and Relax Yoga, Hip-Hop yoga classes as well as guided Meditation classes.
We have a yoga class for anybody. We host wellness workshops monthly, like women’s circles. We empower our teachers to share their love of yoga and support our students to challenge themselves as much as honor themselves during their regular yoga practices. Raising vibrations through our love of movement, play, and the creative process.
As the Founder and Creator of YOUniversal Yoga, I am most proud of the team of individuals who continue to create and evolve within our warm, inspiring, and loving yoga community, as together, we each exemplify our intention to be a better version of ourselves in our own lives and in the world at large.
We are all about the energy. Literally, You may notice the place filled with high vibrational crystals as well as the energetic and personal connections we make with you. Personable is an understatement at YOUniversal Yoga. We get to know YOU and make ourselves available to be there for You if requested.
If someone is looking for a yoga class like a gym workout class, where you the instructor teaches and leaves without meeting you, we may refer you someplace else. At YOUniversal Yoga, we truly desire to contribute to your wellbeing, which means we care about YOU! Building trusting relationships is what we are about.
To practice with us, click the link below, create an account with the MindBody App and sign up you’re your YOUniversal Yoga classes: https://clients.mindbodyonline.com/classic/mainclass?studioid=868147&tg=&vt=&lvl=&stype=-7&view=week&trn=0&page=&catid=&prodid=&date=4%2f22%2f2020&classid=0&prodGroupId=&sSU=&optForwardingLink=&qParam=&justloggedin=&nLgIn=&pMode=0&loc=1
If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
Trust the process more. In business just as in life, things change and evolve – so, remember to ask myself, how would I like to show up through the process?
- $15 Single Yoga class; $10 Single Virtual Class
- $99/month year unlimited yoga classes
- 200 hr Teacher Training Program $2400.00 (Payment Plan Options: $275.00 every week $550.00 every 2 weeks)
- Address: YOUniversal Yoga
7682 Wiles Rd Coral Springs, FL 33067
- Website: https://www.youniversalyoga.com/
- Phone: (954) 840-8889
- Email: Sam@EcoYOUniversalYoga.com or Hello@Youniversalyoga.com
- Instagram: @younviersalyoga
- Facebook: @youniversalyogafl
- Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/youniversal-yoga-coral-springs?uid=Ctc8vFQuyar2htz1WwShvg&utm_campaign=www_business_share_popup&utm_medium=copy_link&utm_source=(direct)