Yoga Teacher, Space Holder, Massage Therapist, Birth Doula
TEACHING: A teacher to me is on the one hand an enabler, someone who assists skilfully in the learning of another without claiming to be anything more than a facilitator. I aim at empowering students to own their experience and process and find their inner teacher. On the other hand, a teacher is someone who through practice, experience and study reached a level of knowledge and understanding which when it is shared enriches someone else's experience. I enjoy sharing what I've learned and keep studying a variety of subjects, practising with my teachers and learning from my students. A central dimension of my teaching is space holding. Holding space is like externalising mindfulness into 3D: creating a space of presence, awareness, trust, clarity, empathy, curiosity, and non-judgment for a person or a group.
YOGA: I believe in the power of a yoga practice because - both as practitioner and teacher - I have experienced and witnessed significant shifts in inner as well as outer state and the experience of being alive. Firstly, it is a system that is based on ethical principles. It offers multidimensional practices ranging from movement and postures to concentration, relaxation and meditation all of which promote awareness, healing and training of our physical body, our breathing, our energetic body, our senses, and our mind. There is something for everyone. To connect to ourselves, we need to spend some time with, get to know and begin to accept, respect and love ourselves for who we are. My intention is to teach in a mindful way putting awareness first. The main teaching focus are breath- and heart-centred practices with accompanying movement and postures - yoga from the inside out. There are various studies that prove the positive effects of conscious breathing on psychological and physiological healing and a calmer state of mind. The techniques become tools that serve your personal journey and enrich your life. A yoga class also offers the opportunity to connect with and support each other without words or touch but through sound and breathing.
THE FEMALE BODY: Since my first pregnancy yoga teacher training, I have gone on a journey of discovery around topics specifically relevant to the female body experience. It is a fascinating, beautiful and sometimes intense field of work. The intensity comes from the fact that the changes pre- and postnatally on a physiological, mental-emotional, practical and spiritual level can be incredibly challenging yet the mainstream message is to 'just get on with it' and 'to get your body back'. My intention is to bring women together, to hold space for their experience and offer useful practices for their special state of health. To deepen my knowledge around birth and to be able to offer more support for women and supporting men, I took a doula training in 2016. The more I learned, studied and experienced in this field, I realised that there is a lack of awareness around the importance of a healthy pelvic floor for general wellbeing alongside with shame and lack of opportunity to talk about issues like incontinence, prolapse and pain. I am passionate about doing my bit to change this by offering pelvic floor workshops for women. Another reality in a female body is a menstrual cycle and menopause. There is beautiful wisdom to be had when these female life and monthly cycles are embraced. Living as if we didn't have a cycle leads to ongoing underlying stress and a plenitude of health issues. In the era of the #metoo campaign, it is more evident than ever that there is a lot of trauma in women's bodies and hearts. I hold women's circles and half day retreats based in yoga which are a safe place to be and share.
THAI YOGA MASSAGE: Through a friend's recommendation, I ended up going on my first Basic Thai Yoga Massage Training in 2014 and haven't stopped training and practising since. I have experienced as both giver and receiver how mindful touch alongside a clear intention is deeply healing for the nervous system. TYM is a multidimensional form of bodywork reaching body, mind and heart based on the principles of mindful touch and heartful presence. It can be used therapeutically on specific parts of the body. To get a profound effect, I tend to work on the whole body, bringing all body parts back in relationship with each other and thereby allowing the body’s energy flow to rebalance and heal itself. All of the above makes it a perfect complementary treatment to a yoga practice. TYM movements originate from the centre of my body and are transferred to your body which is way TYM is also known as ‘the sacred dance’ or ‘an active/passive yoga practice’. Even though TYM reaches deep into muscles and fascia, there is never a sensation of pain. Movements are as big or small as your joint and muscle mobility allows meeting you where you are.
OFFERINGS: I teach regular classes in London (see weekly schedule) which are the foundation of my experience and keep me grounded and connected. I offer specific workshops on breathing, pelvic floor, menstrual cycle awareness and birth preparation so you can deepen your knowledge and satisfy your curiosity in that particular area (see workshops and retreats). I also offer retreats (some are half day retreats in London and some are longer retreats in the UK or abroad) in which I bring all of the above skills together. This as also where I introduce my guitar, voice and songs in the final relaxation. I love being with the same group of people for the length of a retreat because the growing trust and the sharing that happens brings a whole different dimension to the practice and experience. In my private sessions, you can profit from the cross-pollination effect between everything I offer. So your session can meet your needs on any given day (see 'for everyone'/'for women'/'Thai Yoga Massage').
TEACHER TRAININGS: In recent years, creating and holding teacher trainings and teacher training modules has become part of my repertoire and I love it. Since 2015, I have been holding teacher training modules on ‘Yoga during Pregnancy’ for 200hr Yoga Teacher Trainings in London. In 2016, I co-created and co-taught the first FeetUp Teacher Trainings. In 2017, I co-taught on Uma-Dinsmore-Tuli’s Pregnancy Yoga Teacher Training in Portugal (to be repeated in 2018). In 2018, I held the very first ‘Yoga for Postnatal Women’ module on the Yoga on the Lane 200hr Teacher Training. I am passionate about this topic and hoping to find more Teacher Trainings who are willing to take this on board.
GRATITUDE: I am very lucky to work closely with some of my teachers which provides me with the opportunity to learn further through assisting them and co-teaching with them. A huge amount of gratitude goes to Uma Dinsmore-Tuli and Max Strom especially as well as all my other teachers (whether that was their official job description or not). That includes everyone who has chosen to work with me in classes, privates, workshops, retreats, teacher trainings or women’s circles – thank you for your trust.