Julie Campilio will soon begin teaching Sea Change Yoga trauma-informed classes to youth receiving treatment for drug and alcohol use at Day One.
Julie started teaching an after school enrichment class in 2006 at an elementary school in Massachusetts. After getting her 200-hour teacher certificate through Samadhi Center for Yoga in Denver, CO, she started teaching beginners, kids, teens and seniors.
She loved her experience with adults but always new that her heart was with youth. She worked with The Wellness Initiative for five years, a non-profit bringing yoga to at-risk youth.
After seeing the impact that deep breathing, mindful movement and guided relaxation had on children and teens’ social-emotional health, she started Radiant Beginnings to help equip youth with stress management and self-regulation tools.
She owns Radiant Beginnings Yoga and leads teacher trainings, teaches weekly classes and creates audio and video curricula. Her biggest focus is to get students to breathe deeply, get into their bodies and feel as safe as possible to express themselves authentically.
How would you define yoga if you had to explain it to someone who had never practiced before?
I typically tell students in my kids classes that “yoga is three things. Its your mind, your body and your breath— When you put them all together you get to feel REALLY good! We will be breathing deep, moving our bodies and relaxing so we all get to feel really peaceful.”
What did you think yoga was before you started to practice and how has your view of yoga changed?
I took my first class when I was 18 at a fitness center. I thought it was going to be a class filled with stretching and I that I needed to be flexible (which I was not) to participate.
Now, I believe that yoga is combining mind, body and breath to tap into our authentic and innate beings.
How do you see your practice show up in everyday life?
My breath has been the biggest tool to help navigate through uncomfortable moments. When I am feeling overwhelmed or ‘off’ in any way, I root down into my feet, take a deep breath and get into my body with a simple yoga pose. I use my practice daily to support my mental health.
How did you come to teach and what prompted you to move from student to teacher?
After experiencing the healing power of yoga on my nervous system/severe anxiety I knew I needed to bring this gift to children. If I had tools to self-regulate when I was younger, life would have been a lot easier.
I took a 200 hour training in Denver, CO to be sure I had a solid foundation to teach children and teens. Unexpectedly, I started to teach beginners at a local yoga studio downtown. I loved my experience teaching adults, but knew that bringing yoga and mindfulness to youth was my life’s work.
How has teaching affected your life and how do you feel when you teach?
Teaching youth how to manage their feelings has been a gift. Every time I have the opportunity to teach I feel connected to something bigger than myself. Teaching keeps me honest, authentic and in the present moment where I can support my students whole-heartedly.
What brought you to Sea Change Yoga?
A desire to share the healing power of yoga and mindfulness to at-risk youth.
What is your “yoga dream”?
That everyone in the world is equipped with tools to manage their stress