I first learnt yoga from Saeed Ansari, a master yogi who has been practising simple stretches and breath meditation since his childhood in India, as passed onto him by his Grandfather. I learnt from him techniques to manage the nervous system and modify my approach and outlook in life to increase feelings of calmness, acceptance and happiness.
When I moved to Somerset eight years ago I began attending classes with Anna Davies who teaches a strength based, flowing style of yoga. More recently, I have been attending yin yoga classes with Hayley Blackman.
My teacher training was with Karen Patterson at Yoga in Somerset, accredited by the Independent Yoga Network. She teaches in the style of Heinz Grill, who calls his approach the ‘New Yoga Will’. This is an expressive and holistic style where the body is shaped artistically and creatively. Clear thoughts and themes are practised and developed. Natural laws and qualities that are useful for modern life are also felt and cultivated. Student’s will power is strengthened and utilised to carry out purposeful actions in their bodies and lives. This style is calming, yet builds strength and increases flexibility in our bodies.
A focus in all of my classes is to ensure that everyone feels welcomed and able to take part. A yoga class should be an opportunity to let go of habitual tensions, anxieties, fears and judgements in our body and minds, as we immerse ourself fully in our yoga practice. People come to class for different reasons and all are valid, supported and encouraged.
My style of teaching is inevitably influenced by all of the wonderful teachers that I have practised with over the years. I have an interest in mental health and emotional distress and my classes seek to equip people with tools to to be able to soothe their nervous systems and their minds. I base each class on a theme which we develop over time. Some recent themes have included freeing the breath, developing feelings of freedom and lightness in the upper body, how to ground and feel stability in the lower body and improving posture through strengthening the solar plexus and thoracic spine. My approach is flexible as I look and assess what the group and individuals need, basing my classes on this rather than following a prescribed series of postures each week. Students are more then welcome to ask me to focus on a particular area of the body or a particular theme. Questions and feedback are welcomed in class, making it a collaborative experience.
I attend ongoing professional development workshops with Karen Patterson at Yoga in Somerset and Heinz Grill at his teacher training seminars. I also attend workshops with other senior yoga teachers from different schools and styles, including Jenny Beeken, founder of Inner Yoga School & Andrea Newman, expert yoga teacher and rolfer.
I am first aid trained and fully insured. I am a member of the Independent Yoga Network.