Scaravelli Inspired – Thursdays 10.00 – 11.30 am in the Yoga Room
‘When you are kind to your body it will respond in the most incredible way’ wrote Vanda Scaravelli.
I guide you to work slowly and carefully towards a natural and easeful way of practising yoga asanas. I give lots of personal attention and hands-on help to draw your awareness to areas of tension, forcing or straining and help you find ways of dissolving those habits. This approach is suitable for all bodies, including those with limitations or injuries, from beginners to experienced yoga practitioners.
I encourage each person to engage in their own creative process so there is no ‘keeping up’ either with me or anyone else in the class. This is not about achieving asanas but the asanas give us a framework for going deeper into our bodies and beings and getting to know ourselves better.
For me, it is a great pleasure and privilege to witness the delight and surprise that people find at the body’s softening, unfolding and blossoming – at any time of life or whatever condition the body is in to begin with.
This is a process that takes time. It can seem very subtle at first – we often have to do less, in order to feel more. I like to give new students a good amount of individual, hands-on guidance in order to begin to get a feel for this way of working so I ask new students (whatever their previous experience) to try a taster of 4 classes.
As well as weekly classes, I teach regular workshops in Bristol, Cardiff and other places when invited (this year Birmingham & Huelva, Spain) and retreats. I have also guest-taught on Scaravelli-inspired teacher training courses.
My yoga journey began mid 1990’s, in my late 20’s. Having had scoliosis (sideways curvature of the spine) since childhood along with a career making theatre costumes, my body was becoming increasingly stiff and uncomfortable. After attending hatha yoga classes for a couple of years I discovered Vanda Scaravelli’s approach to yoga and her book ‘Awakening The Spine’. I was pleasantly surprised to find that there was a way of doing yoga poses that wasn’t forceful, over-exerting and that didn’t hurt my body.
I completed a 2 year Teacher Training in London in 2002, a course led by Sophy Hoare and others who had studied with Vanda Scaravelli. During this time I met Diane Long, who was Vanda’s main student for 23 years. Diane and Sophy are the authors of a recent book ‘Notes on Yoga – the Legacy of Vanda Scaravelli’.
I have studied extensively with Diane for almost 20 years and visit her in Italy every summer. For the last 6 years I have also studied regularly with Christine Borg.
I have been learning and practising Vedic Chanting for 5 years with Sarah Waterfield in Bristol. As well as connecting in a very direct way to some of the earliest writings about yoga, the chanting and the vibrations of the Sanskrit sounds bring support on many levels – physically, mentally and emotionally.
With the help of my inspiring teachers I find yoga to be an ever-evolving practice. I have been teaching for the best part of 20 years and some of my students have been with me since the very beginning. We are always learning from each other.