A brief history of my yoga journey

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Dear Fellow Travelers
I started teaching yoga in Balmain in the early 90’s.  My friend Greg Barwick and I taught huge classes, in terms of numbers. We taught in the old nurses quarters in the Balmain hospital, a lovely old hall. Later I moved the classes to the more modern, but kinda less appealing conference centre also in the hospital grounds. I was unhappy teaching in the slightly seedy, low ceilinged cavernous hall, so moved to the workshop area that is now Beyond the Ordinary.  Then it was Mysteries a crystal and esoteric book shop. I had an uneasy relationship with the proprietor but loved the teaching space.

In the late 90’s a large space became available in Booth Street, Balmain and I moved my therapy and yoga teaching business in, a stressful period. I loved teaching yoga at the Booth Street clinic and treating people with Bowen, homoeopathy and Sacro-Cranial Technique. Many people passed through that space, and many people taught classes. I initiated into Balmain, Flying Warrior Yoga, Iyengar Yoga, Shadow Yoga, Ashtanga Yoga, Power Yoga, Yoga Therapy, Pranayama, Yoga Nidra, Yoga Philosophy, Pilates, Belly Dancing and workshops on feminine expression.

At the end of 2003 to 2004. I went to India to study yoga and to experience some Ayurvedic purification therapy, Panchakarma
Panchakarma <http://www.google.com.au/search?q=Panchakarma&oe=utf-8&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&client=firefox-a&gws_rd=cr&hl=en&sa=X&as_q=&nfpr=&spell=1&ei=KmZTUsm0K_GZiQfH14HYBA&ved=0CCIQvwU>

I have never been sick travelling in Asia or India but in Kerala in 2004 I drank some pineapple juice and got sick, sick, sick. Fortunately I was on my way to the ashram, and an Ayurvedic Doctor called Ashwin Sasrty looked after me. I came back to Australia and my son picked me up from the airport he exclaimed when he saw me, “Oh my God, you look like a Biafran marathon runner.” I had lost an enormous amount of weight and came back to Australia, recovered but weak.  I continued running the Booth Street Yoga and therapy centre into 2004.  Having been ill I was easily exhausted and decided in mid 2004 to close the Booth Street clinic and yoga centre and treat and teach yoga from home. I specialised in one on one yoga therapy and hands on treatments.

In 2009 I started teaching out of the Old Mysteries space. It had become under the gentle hand of Colleen Kennedy, Beyond the Ordinary, a Tea House and Healing Centre: http://www.beyondtheordinary.com.au/BTO/Welcome.html. Still to this day I love teaching in the yoga room.

Which brings me to 2013. My yoga practice has become centred on postural integration, strengthening yoga postures, pranayama (breath control), Yoga Nidra (yogic relaxation) and lots of calming sitting practices.  I bring to yoga my experience as a therapist. I bring to my own yoga practice a need to become calmer, stronger and maintain a steady relationship with myself and the world.

If you wish to work with me in Yoga a new series of classes will begin next week.  The final few classes of 2013 will emphasise a subtle awareness, a gentle more therapeutic and meditative approach.  Yoga means union, the balancing of opposites, the quieting of your inner monkey mind and a resulting subtle and gentler approach to living your life. As you grow your awareness expands and becomes more subtle, and generous.

I have just returned from a Yoga Conference run by the International Yoga Teachers Association of Australia. One of it’s oldest members Rosemary Pearson was present. Rosemary was , at one time, the president of this organisation. At one meeting she walked up behind me and put her hands on my shoulders. I experienced a stream of gentleness flowing through me.  This gentle woman is present, really present.  She totally embodies a loving presence. The practice of yoga is not going to mean that you don’t age, what it does mean you become open, wiser and your quiet presence restores and replenishes the world within you and those around you just as Rosemary creates an aura of calm in the stormy seas of our lives. I trust your body, mind and  heart will move towards this goal of stillness that moves mountains.

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