Paddle Nantucket is SUPer stoked to have Yoga Teacher, Frances Hickey on board!
We sat down with Frances to find out what Frances loves most about Nantucket and teaching on the water.
Q&A with Frances:
Sarah: You started your own business: Wine and unWind to incorporate both of your passions for wine and yoga. What are some of your other passions or hobbies?
Frances: Yoga and wine are definitely two of my passions and I am so excited to be able to bring them together to share with the world. Besides those two, I am a HUGE music/concert/festival lover – I have sang with a few local bands and used to play the alto saxophone for my college basketball team; an avid world traveler – I have visited/lived on 6 out of 7 continents, a blooming gardner – I used to landscape on island for many years, and an enthusiastic novice chef – I learned from my Dad, but now I adapt most of his meals to the veggie-version. I am also super passionate and involved in athletics – I swim with the U.S. Masters Swim team of Palm Beach in Florida during the off-season and will eventually complete an Ironman in my lifetime! 😉
Sarah: What are you most looking forward to in bringing your practice to the water?
Frances: In bringing my practice to the water, I am most excited about the necessity to become more fluid. Although practicing in a studio is wonderful, once you get out on the water, you really learn to trust yourself and to take risks. You begin to understand fear and how to overcome it, because the worse that can happen is you fall in and you get back up. No big deal. Brining the practice to the board allows you to really experience this idea of ‘taking the plunge’, trusting in yourself and knowing that you will always be able to get back up again.
Sarah: What is your favorite pose to do on the paddle board?
Frances: I have a few favorite poses on the paddle board but I think one of them is forward fold while holding the rails. With the addition of the rails, you can bring yourself deeper into the fold. Another is sivasana, or ‘corps pose’, because I love to put my hands and feet in the water and feel it move under the board. I also enjoy headstand because it requires more concentration on the board than in the studio. You have the added elements of wind and water to take into account. You have to allow yourself to ‘surrender to the flow.’
Sarah: What would be your words of advice for someone who has never tried SUP yoga?
Frances: If you have never tried SUP yoga before, my advice is: DO IT. It doesn’t matter if you know what you are doing or if you are ‘good’ at yoga (whatever that means). It’s fun! It’s different! And it’s challenging! So why not try it? What are you afraid of? (PS. we are all certified in First Aid and a very good swimmers! :))
Sarah: What is your SUP yoga style?
Frances: During Sup classes, I usually wear leggings that are not cotton, and a bathing suit top/sports bra. I might start out with a long sleeve over it, but once you anchor down, it gets pretty warm out there on the water.
Sarah: Aside, from teaching, what else do you like to do on the island?
Frances: Aside from teaching, I love to swim, ride my bike (either my road bike around the island, or my mountain bike through the moors), go for walks with my dog in all the awesome hidden gems, hang out with my friends anywhere, play bocce and have dinner with my family, and go see music at the Brewery, the Box, or any place there might be some playing on island.
Sarah: Favorite restaurant on ACK?
Frances: Honestly, I have not been out yet this season so I don’t really know what my favorite restaurant is right now. However, I have always loved the Straight Wharf. I ate at the Nautilus over Wine Fest Weekend and that was amazing! I really enjoy having dinner at home because my Dad is an amazing cook himself. I also work at the Chanticleer and the menu there is awesome, the squid ink pasta with clams, yeah….
Sarah: What obstacles has yoga helped you overcome?
Frances: A major obstacle that yoga has helped me overcome has been depression. I used to suffer from some intense times of depression in middle school, high school, and into college. Although I began practicing yoga my senior year of high school, I did not begin to take notice of the mental and emotional benefits of the practice until my freshman year of college. Yoga became my therapy and my medicine and through the practice I got myself off of anti-depressants and into a much lighter sense of being and Self-love.
Sarah: Where will you watch the fireworks this 4th of July?
Frances: If the fireworks are on the 3rd (?), I will watch them with my high school roommate at a party out in Polpis. If they are on the 4th, I will be watching them from work at the Chanticleer….
Sarah: Favorite yoga quote?
Frances: Hm…my favorite yoga quote…..I have a few sanskrit mantras that I identify with: Sat Chit Ananda, which means Truth, Consciousness, Bliss
Lokah Samastah Sukinho Bhanvantu, May all beings be happy and free as well as one in English: “flexibility in the body leads to flexibility in the mind.”
More about Frances:
Frances fell in love with Nantucket from the first time she visited when she was 5 years old. Since then, her love affair has brought her back every year to this special and unique island. She believes in the healing powers of the water and of yoga. She has been a student of yoga for over 10 years and began teaching in the summer of 2012 on Nantucket. After completing her first YTT in Nicaragua through the SchoolYoga Institute, Frances returned back to the states to share the practice with the community. She continued training through SYI in summer of 2015 in Peru completing an Advanced Mystical YTT focusing on Ayurveda and Shamanism. Her practice is strong and mindful; she leads each sequence from her heart, intuition, and experience. Frances spent the past few years in Florida, teaching yoga on the beach, at studios, and with the US Masters Swimming and Triathlon team. She is an avid swimmer, as well as an enthusiastic triathlete. In addition to her regular yoga classes, Frances has created her own yoga workshops and business by the name Wine and unWind, combining her passion for yoga with her passion for wine. In these workshops, she shares her knowledge for yoga and wine to her students, giving them an opportunity to learn more about themselves and the nature of the vine. She believes that if yoga is the dance of nature, then wine is the music. She has led multiple partner yoga workshops in Boynton Beach. She teaches a Vinyasa-flow inspired practice, linking breath with movement. Incorporating pranayama, or breathing techniques, and mindfulness into the practice, students begin to cultivate a deeper connection to the mind, body, and spirit. As a teacher, Frances believes in the healing powers of yoga and hopes to create more open hearts, calmer minds, and healthy bodies. Her main message is to show up and do your best; practice compassion and loving kindness to yourself and all beings; and have fun!
Visit Frances at willyogaforwine.com || @willyogaforwine