Meet Rachel Skipper

Meet Rachel Skipper

Tell us a bit about yourself… 

Hello! I’m Rachel. Yoga Teacher of 10 years, specialising in Vinyasa and Restorative practices, graduate of SOAS University with an MA in the Traditions of Yoga and Meditation, and co-founder of The Wellness Philosophy. I’m also Mummy to Flo and Ted who are 4 and 1 years old, so very much in the thick of it right now with childcare and teaching, but can’t say I’d have it any other way!

 What does a typical day look like for you?

I’m usually up pretty early, around 5am, to give myself a bit of time before the kids wake up to ground myself by practicing or planning classes for the day ahead. I find that with being a working parent, preparation is key, and helps manage my stress levels throughout the day. So, while I get the kids up and ready for the day, I’ll prepare a big smoothie to take with me on the go, and usually a light packed lunch too. (My dosha is very pitta, so ‘hanger’ is a real issue for me!) On an average day I’ll be teaching a group class in the morning then perhaps seeing a private client. I’ll try and fit a strength workout in at the gym, and usually have some admin to do for upcoming workshops or retreats that I’m running with my business partner whom I started The Wellness Philosophy with. Then to pick up the kids.

My evenings are generally spent either teaching, supporting the Yogamatters online community, or having dinner with my family and then putting my feet up. A good book in bed by 9pm is usually how I end the night!

How did your yoga journey begin and what inspired you to become a yoga teacher

I decided to do my initial 200hr teacher training back in 2013 at the age of 23, after travelling around Australia once I’d completed my BA degree in Film Studies. I don’t remember a specific light-bulb moment, only the sense of knowing a 9-5 office job wasn’t for me, feeling a bit disillusioned, and intuitively seeking out something more. I trained firstly with a deeply knowledgeable Vinyasa yoga teacher, Claire Missingham, who instilled a precision and discipline into my practice, as well as a love for intelligently crafted and creative sequencing and music! Claire also introduced me to the beauty of the Sanskrit language (the language in which many yoga texts are written), which I then studied in more depth at SOAS during my MA and beyond.

What inspired you to specialize in your practice?

Vinyasa and Restorative yoga practices could be seen as being on two opposite ends of the yoga spectrum, and in this way actually balance each other beautifully in my experience. I’ve always been a very movement-oriented person, and as a young teacher I loved the fluid grace of a well-crafted Vinyasa class. But as I’ve grown older, I appreciate the need to balance movement with stillness and rest. And as I’ve grown as a teacher, I also appreciate subtly and nuance in my practice, which is something that I found in the Restorative style, under the expert guidance of my teacher, Anna Ashby. A quote comes to mind that I’ve been reflecting on recently from the Tibetan Buddhist, Sakyong Mipham, which says that ‘the body benefits from movement and the mind benefits from stillness.’ This is a reminder to me that I must honour the need to both move and find stillness as a way to cultivate wholeness.

How have you seen yoga benefit your students?

Community and connection is probably the biggest benefit that I see. And I only truly recognised this once going back to in-person classes after COVID. People coming together at the same time each week to consciously breathe and collectively move their bodies is a powerful antidote to the detachment and indifference that we can encounter so often in modern urban environments. The softer, more open expressions on people’s faces as they finish practice, and the friendly conversations that quietly buzz at the end of class is a precious reminder to me that the yoga is most profound once you step off of the mat. So that’s a huge benefit I’d say!

What is your favorite quote or life motto?

There are so many! But one that comes to mind is ‘Expect nothing. Appreciate everything.’

What’s coming up for you in 2024?

I’ll be running my first workshop for Yogamatters, Deep Rest: Restorative Yoga & Breathwork for Nervous System Health, on June 30th which I’m very excited to share. I also run monthly Reiki & Restore workshops through The Wellness Philosophy which are always a joy, and another way that I try to facilitate connection and rest as a way to elevate my students sense of wellbeing and wholeness. I’m also co-hosting a weekend wellness retreat at Florence House in East Sussex this December (all of the details are here). Of course, I’m looking forward to collaborating more and more with the wonderful team at Yogamatters as well and connecting with other teachers and like-minded peeps on the community platform!

Find out more about Rachel:


Instagram: @rachelskipperyoga

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