International Lifestyle Magazine Issue 52 - Page 43

About Helen I love the individual journeys that people have taken which have led them to yoga. Many seem to be almost by accident but at the same time, yoga was exactly what they needed at that time in their life and many people have gone on to create some wonderful businesses around the world, sharing their experiences and helping others to find their own personal peace and balance. The first part of Helen’s life was dominated by competitive swimming, culminating in being county champion and third in the southern counties by her late teens. Fully focused on health and fitness, the first time she tried yoga she thought it was too easy… but had no idea of the true meaning and benefits of yoga. Helen went onto complete her initial yoga teacher training with Sivananda, in northern Scotland, after returning from living in New Zealand and Japan. Japa n was where Helen started practising yoga regularly, having started karate and being shocked at her inflexibility! Starting a yoga practice and learning about Zen meditation changed Helen’s way of thinking and life profoundly. Helen was living there teaching English as a foreign language, having studied French, Spanish and German at university and finally finding a love for teaching in Japan. After gaining yoga teacher status, Helen then went on and studied to be a primary school teacher, during this time Helen started teaching her first yoga classes. Whilst teaching full time, Helen tried to maintain teaching a weekly yoga class, with the little spare time she had. More significantly Helen was able to incorporate yoga into class time and PE lessons, developing her personal way of teaching yoga to children. Seeing the phenomenal effect that yoga had on young people, Helen developed a suitable, appropriate and engaging way of teaching yoga to children in the educational setting. Determined to share the experience with other school pupils, Helen began promoting yoga as part of the school curriculum. Helen no longer swims but now loves surfing, and moreover, trail running. At the start of 2013 Helen started offering Yoga for Athletes classes, as a way of advocating the benefits of yoga to athletes of all sports, using her knowledge of yoga and training regularly for a sport. Now dedicated to teaching yoga, Helen has more time for her own practice, allowing her to continue with further training, classes and retreats. This summer saw Helen hold her first Trail Running and Yoga retreat in Turkey. This retreat will take place again in April 7-14