Mums in Business with Nicki from YogaBellies
It’s that time again when we hear about inspirational local mums who run their own business. We spoke to Nicki who runs YogaBellies, a yoga class for mums and mums to be.
Tell us about you and your family
My family is myself, my husband Dave and our two children, Lucas 5 and Harriet 3.
Are you originally from Worthing?
I grew up in Surrey but came to Sussex for University where I lived in Bognor for a couple of years. I then moved to Chichester and have been here ever since.
What’s your favourite thing about living on the South Coast?
I love the beautiful scenery, the downs, the sea, the space. There is so much to do here and so many amazing places to explore. My initial plan was only to come down here for Uni but I just fell in love with the area and never wanted to leave.
Hobbies, what do you do in your spare time?
When I do get some downtime, as well as yoga, I love to run. It’s my time to get some fresh air, have some quiet time and be alone with my thoughts. I love that it challenges me and takes me on little adventures and I find places I didn’t know existed. My husband and I really enjoy DIY and spending time on both big and small projects in our house. As a family we love to go swimming, camping, walking in the woods and on the beach and creating things at home. Whether this is Lego creations in the front room, biscuits in the kitchen or a vegetable patch in the garden.
Tell us about your business, why you started and what drives you on?
Yogabellies is a wonderful community of women supporting women. It provides inclusive, nurturing yoga classes for women of all life stages. It isn’t just a yoga class but a safe space to get to know other women during the same life stage. There is no expectation on women when they come to my classes, they are welcomed and accepted for who they are and I love that I get to meet some many interesting and strong women.
I have always loved sport and physical activity growing up but I know that not everyone feels the same and I want to help women find a love for physical activity. There are many preconceptions about yoga out there, which I want to change. You don’t have to be super flexible, or spiritual or able to meditate, just open to trying new things. I love getting to know the ladies personally and finding out what makes them tick, what they want to work on, where their strengths lie and seeing them form friendships.
Although YogaBellies is for all women I run more classes for pregnancy and Mum & baby. Having two small children myself, I know how hard it is to meet other Mums, to get out of the house and to take some time to rebuild your physical strength after giving birth. YogaBellies enables Mummies to do all of those things and we do it with tea and cake at the end of class too!
It’s been a lovely change to teach adults after 11 years of being a special needs teacher. It was a job I loved and I was fortunate enough to work with some amazing children and adults. I just found it became too much to juggle it with two children and my husband’s shift pattern and I realised I needed to make a change. It’s great being able to manage my business around my family but I do miss working with children. I believe yoga has such a positive impact on everyone and is especially beneficial for children. It helps with body awareness, anxiety, teaches self-calming techniques and being part of a group in a non-competitive way. I will be starting yoga classes for toddlers from January 2018 and within a year or so I will have completed additional training to teach yoga to children. I am excited to start offering programs to schools and specialise in yoga for children and adults with additional needs.