My name is Simon, I started practising yoga about 20 years ago. Previously I had enjoyed doing martial arts, but I got to a point where I didn’t enjoy them any more and I wanted to do something different. I had no idea yoga would be that thing, or that I’d carry on doing it for so long and eventually become a teacher!
I tried a few different classes to begin with. There are lots of different styles of yoga – for example Viniyoga, Ashtanga and Iyengar – each of which have a different emphasis. There are lots of different styles of teaching as well. It’s important to find a style of yoga and a teacher that you like. We’re all different. Some teachers might have quite a relaxed class, others may have a stricter approach. You never know, you might actually like a strict teacher!
The yoga classes I go to are mainly Ashtanga and Iyengar. I took up Ashtanga yoga this year and really enjoy it. It is very hard work, like taking up gymnastics, but it has given me the chance to take a look at my yoga and helped me to find a new level of ability. One that I hope will continue to improve. The flowing, sequenced nature of Ashtanga is also beginning to have an impact on my teaching.
I enjoy the discipline, the precision in asana and the physical challenge that Iyengar yoga gives me. Ashtanga yoga is a a series of sequences, whereas Iyengar is a slower, more detailed practice of asana. But slower doesn’t mean easier. This form of yoga also influences what I teach and how I teach.
Over the last 20 years I’ve found yoga to be a deep well that I can draw from. It’s helped me physically and kept me supple and strong. I found it an enormous help when I was recovering from a quad bike accident (4 smashed ribs, 1 punctured lung). It’s also helped me mentally and given me a place I can go to unwind and relax.
I do my best to accommodate everyone who comes to a class. If you have any physical restrictions I’ll speak to you about them and offer modifications to poses so that you can continue to work at a level suitable for you. I can only recommend that you give it a go. It could change your life!
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