Erica Quam

Leadership Coach | Team Development | Yoga Instructor

Hi there, I'm Erica. I grew up in Roanoke, Virginia. I swam in college at Indiana University, and spent 15 years as a collegiate swimming coach - most recently as the Head Women's Swimming Coach at Washington State University.

Kerry and I landed in Bellingham, Washington in 2011. We had great jobs at WSU and were in positions many people dream of - at the Division 1, Pac-12 elite level. Yet, we both knew that there was more we were supposed to do.

Although we weren't exactly sure on what we'd be doing...we were very clear on the where. Bellingham was the right place for us to call home.

What do you do at Prime?

My passion is working with athletic coaches to help them develop leadership skills both on and off the field.  I facilitate Women's Coaching Summits each spring and summer here at the Prime Sports Institute.  I lead a year-round mastermind group for a select group of coaches that includes group calls and one-on-one coaching with me.  I'm currently developing a mentorship program for coaches that will include strategy training, group coaching, as well as an online private forum so coaches can get consistent support and encouragement all season long.  

My 'behind-the-scenes' focus is on team development at the Prime Sports Institute. I'm passionate about helping groups create a positive team environment where people can communicate clearly, work through challenges effectively, and function at a higher level than they could alone.

I also teach lyengar Yoga here at Prime.

When & How did you get into yoga?

I started taking yoga when I coached at WSU. It was my personal self care twice a week. I experienced such profound results, I decided to incorporate two yoga sessions into our weekly training schedule - as a way to prevent injuries, improve posture and balance, and relieve some of the stress and pressure that comes along with being a D1, Pac-12 student athlete.

What are your certifications, qualifications? Tell us about your Unique Experience... 

I started teaching a couple of small classes in Pullman and then moved to Bellingham to begin a 4-year apprenticeship with Ingela Abbott at Yoga Northwest. I completed my Introductory lyengar Yoga certification in the fall of 2015 and am currently working on my next syllabus.

I currently teach at Yoga Northwest on Tuesdays and Wednesdays in addition to my classes here at Prime.

What's your approach/philosophy to yoga and why does it work?

I believe that most people in general need to slow down and listen more than they need to speed up and plow forward.

This is especially true for athletes.  

One of my favorite quotes is, "the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."  

Yoga can be a great way to break the patterns of training, explore imbalances in your body, and find ways to strengthen, lengthen, 

I enjoy teaching athletes who may have never done any yoga before and people who don't consider themselves to be flexible.  I love helping them experience the benefits of yoga and explore the many ways they can incorporate yoga into their training and daily lives.