“A busy mind is always telling you where to go. A quiet mind can be told where to go” TKV Desikachar
My name is Mandy and I live in Bromley.
Yoga came into my life very early thanks to my Mum, my first teacher, who used to practise yoga listening to Richard Hittleman cassette tapes when I was a kid. I can remember joining in from the age of six in her sunny, yellow bedroom. I also have vivid memories of my sister and I ‘doing’ a yoga video that featured Raquel Welch in an extraordinary zebra print leotard (yes, it was the 80’s) demonstrating some very theatrical breathing exercises. These early experiences ignited a fascination for yoga that has ripened into my lifelong passion, and now my lovely Mum comes to my classes and I get to share some of what I have learned with her.
“WHAT KIND OF YOGA DO YOU TEACH?” The formal answer to that question is that I teach yoga in the tradition of T. Krishnamacharya and T.K.V. Desikachar. This profound yet practical approach to yoga places emphasis on the importance of tailoring the practice to the needs of the student. Teachers in this tradition use the various tools of yoga (posture, breath, meditation, philosophy, visualization and sound) and adapt them to meet the needs, abilities and requirements of each individual. The focus is more on the breath and the quality of attention given to the practice rather than the ability to get into advanced postures.
The informal answer, the one I’d give you if you asked me this question at a party, is that I teach no nonsense, practical yoga, the kind you can do in your tracksuit bottoms and an old t-shirt. It does’t matter what shape you are, how stiff or flexible you are, how old or young you are, all that matters is that you roll out a mat and give it a try.
“Start where you are, use what you have, do what you can” – Arthur Ashe
I teach the kind of yoga that starts off by getting you stretching and breathing and ends up, if you want it to, teaching you things about yourself you never knew and empowering you to make positive changes you couldn’t have imagined.
Prof. T. Krishnamacharya was a master of yoga, a teacher, an Ayurvedic physician and a scholar. He is recognised globally as one of the most significant masters of yoga in the modern era having taught many who went on to become influential teachers themselves. including B.K.S. Iyengar, Pattabhi Jois and Indra Devi.
T.K.V. Desikachar was T. Krishnamacharya’s son and foremost student. It was his book “The Heart of Yoga” that brought me to this tradition. He was renowned for his wisdom, humility, integrity and acuity. His work in the field of yoga therapy has left a legacy that inspires all who are now charged with keeping his teachings alive.
Gill Lloyd is my wise, warm and wonderful mentor. I am very fortunate and grateful to have her in my life! She lives her yoga and is an inspirational teacher. Her knowledge is deep and grounded in experience. She studied closely with her mentor T.K.V. Desikachar for many years until his passing in August 2016.
I am also influenced by the fluid and exploratory approach to yoga that Vanda Scaravelli exemplified and by Donna Farhi, a yoga practitioner with a wealth of experience and a professional approach, as well as a host of inspiring teachers along the way each of whom have shared their wisdom and been significant in my life. These include Christa Gaskill, John Parry, Zoe Knott, Bob and Be Insley, Hannah Twigg, Roger King, Liz Murtha, Kausthub Desikachar and Sarah Ryan. My warm thanks go to each of these.
I am a fully qualified teacher with The Society of Yoga Practitioners (TSYP) and am an Advanced Accredited Teacher certified by the British Wheel of Yoga (BWY). I am an active member of The Society of Yoga Practitioners (TSYP).