Senior gets certified as a yoga instructor

Senior Helena Hickok takes time out of her busy schedule to relax with yoga.

Hickok’s favorite poses are downward dog, dancer, headstands, warrior two, and reverse warrior.

Lucy Scherer, Staff Writer

Hickok started yoga at CorePower when she was in about seventh or eighth grade. “I originally started because my sister Jess would go so I would go too sometimes,” Hickok said. In these first years of yoga Hickok enjoyed going to C2 (Hot Vinyasa flow) for relaxation. “I was in a lot of sports, like soccer and track. It was nice to stretch throughout the week and center myself,” Hickok said.

Certification was a lot of work. We had homework too, like writing essays. I was never putting it off, I was interested in it.”

— Helena Hickok

This became her regular routine for a while until she wanted to do something more. Hickok started getting really into yoga when she could drive because she could go more often. The intensity of an activity like yoga brought Hickok a sense of community. “I know everyone at CorePower; it is a super strong community. I like the classes super hot like CP does, so I can sweat more. They make more of a connection with you and [the instructors] don’t just go off a script,” Hickok said.

After talking to her fellow classmates and realizing how often she went, Hickok took the leap and decided to become certified. “I was going so much, about 6 times a week, so I really wanted to learn more; my original plan was to teach yoga as a job, even though I haven’t done that yet,” Hickok said.

The certification process at CorePower is actually very detailed. At CorePower, students take a certain amount of classes on their own. They take 60 hours of basic classes and 200 hours of training. The trainees take notes and journal during each class, going through each position and reviewing what the correct yoga postures are, to make sure students don’t hurt themselves. Classes could include lessons about the anatomy of the human body, history of yoga, etc. The certification takes over eight weeks total. “After we completed the training process I got a certificate and we had  a ceremony and party; it was really fun,” Hickok said.

Hickok was also very young compared to her classmates. “I was by far the youngest; I was 16 and the closest to me was 20 or 21. It was very intimidating at first and a little bit scary, but as we went through the process I got to know them, but it was harder to relate to them because they always talked about things like their work lives, while I was focusing on things like the ACT,” Hickok said.

Even though during the certification process Helena was faced with the stress of junior year, diligently managing her time made it easy to find a balance. “Certification was a lot of work. We had homework too, like writing essays. I was never putting it off, I was interested in it,” Hickok said.

With her certificate, Helena can technically be hired anywhere, but being hired at CorePower is a little bit different. CorePower does extended certification lessons to future employees. It also depends on how many overall job openings they have. Hickok would love to teach yoga, but right now it is too time-consuming with school and college coming up. However, she still finds ways to share what she has learned. “I taught yoga to a group on vacation on the beach once in Mexico. I also have taught some classes at CorePower but they were smaller, and I did not get paid,” Hickok said.

Hickok believes that yoga will always have a place in her life. “I would like to teach at CorePower eventually, but it is not everywhere in the U.S. It really depends on where I end up for college and where I end up after college. However, I plan on doing [yoga] wherever I end up,” Hickok said.

Yoga isn’t only exercise to Hickok, it is also spiritual. “It makes me feel a lot better mentally afterward. I am not thinking of that during it, but after you get a feeling, it helps connect past to present. It helps you relax about whatever is going on at the moment, it helps you slow down for a second,” Hickok said.

Hickok recommends yoga to anyone and everyone. “I would recommend you try it. Even though at first it can feel very uncomfortable and awkward, you may even feel you aren’t made for it. You can create it to be any way you want it to be. Once you get the hang of it, it’s a good thing to go to,” Hickok said.