We recently connected with one of our 500 hour yoga teacher training graduates, Kirsty Trebilcock, who shares her story of finding Zuna Yoga, and how she applies what she has learned in Bali to her professional life as a Palliative care nurse.
Can you tell us more about yourself outside of Yoga?
I am 31 years old, currently living in Stirling; within the stunning Adelaide Hills region of South Australia! I work as a Registered Nurse, specializing in Palliative care (end of life care), and my profession is truly my soul purpose. I enjoy mega bush walks, exploring and rambling around the coast of South Australia, and discovering the best wineries in my home region!
What motivated you to complete your 200 and 300-hour trainings?
My first 200-hour training was motivated by a desire to deepen my yoga as a practice. I chose Zuna Yoga following a conversation about various trainings with my yoga instructor at the time. I was seeking a depth of understanding; not singularity in just my asana, but also my 'self' practice. I had no clue what to expect, or that I would be so profoundly influenced by my first training experience.
Naturally, my 300-hour training came next – less than a year after completing my 200-hour training, I was hungry for more. I saw my 200-hour training as a basis, primarily of asana fundamentals. My 300-hour, however, invited a much deeper component with its emphasis on meditation. My experience at these two trainings couldn't have been more different on a personal level!
I yearned for and enjoyed the tranquility of practicing morning silence. There was an undercurrent of confidence to the collective group that brought forward a depth of understanding, curiosity, and consciousness that I had never experienced before.
On a personal level, what are some of the most important lessons you took away from the trainings?
I’ve learned I am NOT my thoughts, and that our physical practice is a tool: the more we move with breath, the more intuitive we become, and the less emotionally we react – our breath is our greatest gift.
On a professional level, what are some of the most important lessons you took away from the trainings?
Everyone is capable or relaxation, healing, and softening from tension – the breath is the secret to this. Also, that presence and silence are often the best response.
How do you professionally integrate the knowledge gained from your trainings?
By finding compassion, presence & love for all people I care for in their death.
I work through relaxation techniques and breath work to assist with pain and anxiety, and approach individual circumstances calmly in order to cultivate the peaceful environment integral to approaching the topic of death.
I have also found that those who accept their impending death have far better experiences in terms of comfort, symptoms, and relationships - which positively affect those surrounding them as well. It's an incredibly humbling, raw, and privileged position to be in. I believe my work, and practice remind me each day to live an incredible life, because I am fortunate enough to be healthy and able.
What kind of responses or changes have you experienced in your professional life since the trainings?
Now that I am responsible and conscious of my own energy and responsibility in all circumstances, I am able to choose what disturbs my peace and what I can bring to each encounter. Often if someone is in pain, suffering or deep grief, I introduce pelvic breathing. It has been the most significant component of my training professionally, and has re-surfaced time and time again to help people through those challenging moments.
I believe as a practical / physical practice that brings people into the moment & they are able to move forward a little clearer.
What surprising benefits did you see from your training?
Hmm…well, my whole world has changed!
Meditation and its benefits have become far more important to me than the physical aspects of yoga. Of course I still have unconscious 'human' responses, however - I am quickly able to find my mantra, "This moment is like this," and know that all will pass. This knowledge that I am more than my experience keeps me calm, keeps me stable, and allows me to be at equilibrium with myself. .
What advice would you give to prospective students of YTT?
Don’t hesitate. Listen. Let yourself evolve!