Yoga is a tool for linking body, breath and mind. We can use this tool to develop physically, psychologically, emotionally and to pursue a deeper understanding of ourselves. Yoga also acts as a healing therapy, a support to maintain our health and as a preventative to reduce the likelihood or severity of a problem recurring.
The approach that I both practice and teach is known as viniyoga, which is a Sanskrit term meaning application. This is Yoga as a Process rather than just an experience, and this process is unique to the individual. Understanding the purpose and function of the postures beyond their physical form enables me to design the practice around the you, tailored to your individual needs and situation and progressing with you, In this way Yoga can be accessible to anyone.
"If you can breathe, you can practice Yoga"
- T Krishnamacharya
Personal Lessons FAQ
How do I know if Personal Lessons are for me?
Personal lessons support you to develop a unique practice that you carry out regularly at home. The art of individual tuition is in building a Yoga practice that supports the person whilst respecting any problems, rather than trying to focus on a particular problem whilst respecting the person. The process of viniyoga begins with understanding the starting point for each individual and building a daily practice that is concise, relevant and appropriate. This way anyone can learn Yoga.
Some examples of the situations in which Personal lessons can support you are:
Recovery from illness or injury: musculoskeletal, physiological, emotional
Improving quality of Life with chronic conditions
Supporting your everyday wellbeing
Time to focus on yourself
Physical or psychological development
To learn more about Yoga
As a process of Self-inquiry
How does it differ from group classes?
Group classes can provide a fantastic Yoga experience: the studio, the ambience, the guidance of the teacher’s voice, the feeling of escape from the daily grind. However finding the ‘right’ class for you can be difficult and for many people the group class is intimidating or completely contra-indicated. Personal lessons are a completely different approach. A Personal lesson is not a group class for one. It is a consultation for a short practice that you will do at home every day.
Group classes provide a longer practice with more variation week-on-week, but they also have to accommodate a huge amount of variation between all of the students and therefore the scope for personalisation is limited. Your Yoga Practice will be shorter, much more specific and change slowly in order to reflect your progress and respond to any issues or changes that occur. A Personal lesson may last for an hour but the practice that you take away will typically only take around 20 minutes in order to make it achievable for you to practice every day.
What happens in the lessons?
Each lesson will start with a chat where I will ask how your practice has been going and whether there have been any changes in your day-to-day life. I will review your current practice by asking you to demonstrate parts of it, then update it both in terms of technical elements in order to improve individual postures or by making progressive changes; for example modifying existing postures, adding new postures, changing the order of the practice, changing the focus or emphasis. Sometimes we may need to backtrack to a previous version to respect any problems that have occurred, either in the practice directly or indirectly due to changes in your personal circumstances.
I will guide you through the new practice to ensure you are confident with the changes and we will book the next lesson giving a suitable time frame for your practice to settle. Typically lessons will alternate half-hour and hourly sessions in a review / development pattern with a gap between them of 3 to 4 weeks.
Do I need special equipment?
No! A Yoga mat and a foam block or two are useful but most initial practices can be done using a rug or blanket on the floor for comfort and a thick book or folded blanket as a support. You don’t need any fancy clothes, there is no-one to impress.
Isn’t it more expensive?
Initially yes. The first lesson will be the longest in order to get a number of fundamental techniques in place. The first few lessons will tend to be quite closely spaced as well as introducing a daily practice can show effects very quickly and we need to keep up! But once in the swing of things a lesson every 3-4 weeks works out similar in price to committing to a block of group classes.
What do I need to get started?
Before committing to any lessons I offer a half hour (ish) consultation which is completely free. I will send you a form requesting some details about yourself and what you are looking for which we will discuss along with the process and expectations. I may ask to see you demonstrate some simple movements so that I can get an idea of what your starting point would be. In this way should you choose to proceed to a lesson I can have sketched out an initial practice in readiness.
Each lesson is booked ad hoc, usually at the end of the previous lesson. There is no block booking and you Pay As You Go. Payment is required within 7 days of a lesson and 24hrs notice is required for any cancellation otherwise the full fee is chargeable.
Please contact me with any questions!
"If you don't know where you are, how can you expect to get to where you want to be?"
- Paul Harvey
Small Group Classes
The Viniyoga approach is designed with individuals in mind but can work well in small group situations, especially as an introduction to Yoga: developing primary postures, integrating the breath and understanding the importance of appropriate modifcations. Limiting class sizes allows for personal attention and bespoke courses or workshops can be designed around a particular theme or group where appropriate.
I currently have no regular group classes running but please contact me if you would like me to keep you informed via a mailing list, or if you are interested in setting up a course or workshop.