Meet Manon Zouaï

 Small World Yoga’s first community studio manager!

 Manon brings a wealth of personal and professional experience to the table, and shares Small World Yoga’s passion for making yoga accessible for all.

Where are you from originally? 

I grew up in the city of San Francisco and went to college in Southern California at Scripps College. Right around the time I graduated, my mom’s company was moving to Nashville and I decided to go with her. I found a strong community here and an easy way of life. So I decided to stay and plant my roots here while I worked on developing my skills and figuring out what I was passionate about.

How did you first get into yoga? 

I first started practicing yoga in 2014 as a way to heal an old hip-flexor injury I had sustained from running track in college. I fell in love with the sense of routine, strength and grounding yoga gave me, which I missed from having been an athlete for most of my life. When I completed my teacher training in 2016 with emPower School of Yoga, my love and appreciation for the practice deepened. I’ve been teaching ever since.

 

“But where we really move the needle on growth is with people”

How would you describe your teaching style?

Powerful. Inspirational. Fun.

What are your goals for the new studio? 

I think with management there is a balance between people and numbers. Of course, I’m looking at our numbers regularly to make sure we are doing everything we can to work towards becoming a profitable enterprise, supporting the larger goals of Small World Yoga. But where we really move the needle on growth is with people. I would say that my primary goal as a studio manager is to make sure that our teachers are supported in everything  they do here and beyond. When teachers are supported, they are able to show up more fully. When teachers show up fully, every student who comes into the stdio leaves feeling connected, seen and welcome. Part of that support also means pushing our teachers to grow both in their teaching and as students, which is what we’re about here at SWY. I love that we’ve created a space to do that.

“My primary goal as a studio manager is to make sure that our teachers are supported in everything  they do here and beyond”

How did you get involved with Small World Yoga? 
I knew Liz from teacher training, and have always looked up to her as a leader and a businesswoman in the community. I consider her to be a role model. I was working a corporate job, and at first didn’t have many opportunities to get involved with Small World Yoga – just some volunteering and attending board meetings. In 2018, I started to feel the itch to do something different. I decided to help out with the emPower School of Yoga Training in 2018 because that was one of the places I felt most myself.I actually got paired up with Liz during a goals exercise for training. My big goal for 2018 was to take a leap into a new career that was more in line with who I was, while Liz’s big goal was to hire a studio manager. Something inside me said, that’s me!
At the end of our session, I told her I was interested in the position and that I thought I would be a good fit. After some emails and an interview, it was set. I think we both tried to play it cool, but really wanted the other to say yes all along! My background is in project management, so I feel like I’ve been able to bring some of those skills and strategies to this position. But what I’ve loved most is that being surrounded by yoga on a daily basis has pushed me to delve deeper into the benefits of this practice, both the physical and beyond. I’m understanding the power of yoga in a way that I never have before. I’m seeing that yoga, mindfulness and meditation are not just activities we can do to enhance our lives, but they can actually be conduits to long-lasting healing physically, socially and emotionally, not just for us as individuals, but also for our communities as a whole. I finally feel like I’m living my purpose.

“I finally feel like I’m living my purpose.

 

What do you wish people knew about the new studio? 

I want to get the word out that we offer $5, heated yoga classes. And I want new and seasoned yoga students alike to know that this is a place you can land in and call home.

Manon is a member of our Leadership Team along with Founder and Executive Director Liz Veyhl and  Outreach Manager Natalie Aulvin. If you need to contact Manon, email studio@smallworldyoga.org