Meet Sam Burke – one of the kindest and most dedicated yoga teachers I have come across (and I have been to many!) Lucky for us she is based in Melbourne and teaches regular classes here. Despite the physical and demanding nature of the style of yoga Sam teaches, she embraces all people, all bodies and all levels of experience with the same gentle teaching style.
I love Sam’s approach to life – being present in each and every day and creating balance through small pleasures.
Check out her teaching schedule at http://www.ashtangamelbourne.com.au/. Sam also teaches at other studios around Melbourne from time to time.
Can you tell us a little bit about your business or the work you do?
I am an Ashtanga Yoga Teacher currently working at the Ashtanga Yoga Centre of Melbourne.
What does a typical day look like for you?
A typical work day starts early for me. I’m up around 5/5.30am depending on my teaching schedule at the Shala (Yoga Centre) where I teach each morning in what we call the Mysore room. The Ashtanga practise is a traditional practise, self-led and sequential. Students practise in their own time with what their own practise individually involves on that given day - this type of practise engenders the space with a beautiful quiet and meditative quality. That said however Ashtanga Yoga is a highly physical practise so my ‘work space’ can get a little heated and sweaty with all that effort!
Following my teaching I then go on to do my own practise which generally takes about 2 hours.
What is your go to Melbourne food/restaurant?There are so many wonderful plant based restaurants in Melbourne - where do I start??
Yong Green Food, Transformer, Smith and Daughters, Neko Neko, Red Sparrow Pizza…the list goes on….and we’re not even out of Fitzroy!
How do you create balance in your life?
I try and create balance in each day and that hopefully adds up to a balanced life. I’m blessed in that I work in an area that I’m passionate about and ‘the job’ requires me to maintain my own practise, my own enquiry, my own dedication and perseverance - teaching yoga energises me as well as allowing space in my day to nurture myself so that I can give that to the people I love, give time for making art, writing music or going for bush walks with my dogs. Yoga is a way of life and its one I’m very happy that I’ve found.
Tell us about your food philosophy
My diet is approximately 90% vegan with the odd egg from my mum’s chooks or some ethically sourced cheese occasionally. I choose to eat a whole foods plant based diet because of my personal beliefs surrounding the cruel and unnecessary killing and abuse of animals in food production. I’ve eaten this way for a number of years now and along with the ethical reasons that inform my decision I’ve also studied nutritional medicine - eating this way is a win win - good for the animals, good for the planet and good for my health and wellbeing!