Meet Paola Tello Guerrero – RHY’s Antarctic Ambassador!

Red Hot Yoga & Pilates is delighted to be sponsoring one of our students Paola Tello Guerrero in Homeward Bound, an exciting global initiative that aims to encourage women’s participation in science. Read on to find out more about how yoga has helped her mentally and physically prepare for her forthcoming expedition to Antarctica!

1. What is the Homeward Bound initiative?

Homeward Bound: Mother Nature Needs Her Daughters is the largest ever female scientific expedition to Antarctica.  It is an Australian initiative which aims to upskill 1,000 female scientists over a period of 10 years to empower women to influence policy and decision making as it shapes our planet for the future; a programme which has changed my life forever and probably will touch your life at some point.

2. What was the selection process for taking part?

Each year Homeward Bound selects a group of female scientists to participate in a year long programme of leadership, science communication, and climate change; as well as practical research.

The criteria to be selected are:

• Science background
• Evidence of past work in leadership, women’s groups and climate related initiatives
• Boundless energy and a desire to shake the world!

We comprise 80 women from more than 12 nationalities, I am the only Colombian. We span all ages and levels of expertise; the next stage in our journey is the Antarctic expedition in February 2018.

3. When is the expedition and what will be you doing day to day?

Over a period of 3 weeks in February 2018 I will experience one of the toughest but most fascinating of adventures – performing research, coaching and presentations, inspecting the different challenges in each area, the goal of which is to devise plans and solutions using a multicultural and multidisciplinary approach.

And hopefully with some time left to practise yoga and walks – in the coolest, windiest, and driest place in the world.

4. You’re originally from Colombia – how did you end up in Guildford?

I work in geoscience studying rocks at ALS Petrophysics. I was doing the same job in Colombia but I always wanted to learn English, I looked at jobs all over the world and Guildford was the most attractive option when it was advertised back in 2015.  I really enjoy reading so was keen to improve my fluency – without English I was missing out on too much!

5. Tell us a bit about you – what are your hobbies?

Hard question, I used to be a sporty woman who enjoy reading and cooking. But this project has become my life! Right now I am a passionate person who is totally committed to improving education and promoting care of the environment.

6. How did you get involved with Red Hot Yoga?

My daily activities involve at least 18 hours of work per day – being a part of the RHY community has kept me sane!

7. Describe your training regime and how yoga/pilates helps with this.

It was love at first sight for me and yoga – I have fond memories of my first yoga class with Julee! I used to try and practice every day, sometimes morning and evenings!  Now that level of practice has become a necessity!
As part of this project I am spreading the message initially throughout schools and businesses in Colombia, involving lots of talks and a variety of focussed activities.

Through the practice of Yoga and Pilates, I have gained:

The strength to present in front of large and varied audiences;
The calmness to deal with all the pressures and expectations of such a large project;
The creativity to come up with new fundraising ideas;
The energy to work for 19 hours each day to keep on top of everything;
The patience to know that challenging or difficult moments are not forever;
And the confidence to achieve what initially looks impossible.

All of these valuable assets came from love, and that’s at the heart of yoga isn’t it?

No words can truly express my gratitude to Clarissa, my RHY teachers, reception staff and yogis who have been a crucial part of this adventure so far.

8. You’re clearly a very motivated person – what’s your motto in life?

Love, and a deeply held belief that together we go further.

I encourage you all to get involved with small actions and making mindful personal decisions; as well as embracing the big ideas and ambitious plans that enable us to enjoy our time living fully, and more importantly, improving the lives of others.


If you would like to follow this adventure – please add me on Instagram and twitter @pateguerrero, or if you have questions, ideas, words of encouragement, or would like to get involved – please let me know: ptelloguerrero@gmail.com

 

 

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