During a traditional Hatha Yoga class, I will guide you calmly through breathing techniques (pranayama), a well-balanced sequence of postures (asanas) working on every part of the body, and relaxation. All of this, if practiced regularly, has a balancing effect on our inner organs, nervous system and hormones as well. Classes can be 60 min. or 90 min. long and each part can be adapted to the needs and abilities of every student.
I teach a classical hatha yoga style and became a Yoga-Alliance-certified teacher trained in India (Neyyar Dam Ashram, Kerala) in 2007. My knowledge and personal practice keep expanding over the years through the guidance of my mentor, Françoise Galan, herself a direct disciple of André van Lysebeth and Swami Satyananda.
Depending on the students, I mix this with the fun, unconventional Yoga of the Rainbowkids Yoga family, which I learnt in Paris with founder Gopala Yaffe and in Madrid with the Spanish kids’ yoga expert Cayetana Rodenas. It really is a whole new approach to yoga. Here, mats are put in a circle to emphasise equality and sharing, music is an important part of the atmosphere, and we explore yoga through games and partner poses.
This lead me to develop partner yoga sequences, which I love teaching to couples in private classes and which have helped some couples rekindle their flame, get through rough patches in their lives and deepen their emotional bond in a really touching way.
This works for romantic couples as well as for friends / family members, and can be adapted successfully in a corporate environment for team building exercises involving trust and confidence.
My personal story further lead me to specialise in the effects of yoga on the hormones (thyroid and reproductive system). I started out teaching a modified version of Dinah Rodrigues’ teachings. More recently I took the Birthlight Wellwoman course, which allows me to support women with health issues at all stages of their life. I have helped women with endometriosis, fertility or thyroid issues, and at various stages of perimenopause.
Nidra means “sleep” in Sanskrit. The guided deep relaxation of a yoga nidra session puts us in a state between wake and sleep where body and mind can rejuvenate, we experience blissful rest, and may even have access to our subconscious mind, our personal inner wisdom. Yoga nidra is actually an advanced but easily accessible form of meditation, although you are comfortably lying down – no lotus pose required! Usually a class will take 90 minutes: about 1 hour of stretches, warm-ups and asanas to evacuate stress and tensions, then 30 minutes of yoga nidra. I was trained and certified in Yoga Nidra at the Satyananda School in Paris, where it is taught in the original style.
Prenatal and postnatal yoga
Gentle yoga is a wonderful help during and after your pregnancy, even if you have never tried it before. Awareness of the body, the mind and the emotions is heightened during this special time.
Learning to stretch and relax, alleviating back pain, digestion issues, nervousness or other symptoms, will help you remain serene as your body transforms.
Sharing this time with other future mums at different stages of their pregnancy, and later with new mums and possibly their babies, creates a lovely sense of community.
My simple, fun and safe pregnancy yoga class and postnatal yoga class with or without baby are based on the very thorough method of the Birthlight school.
Inspired by the excellent YinSights manual by Bernie Clark and by the classes I was lucky to take over the years, especially with Mirjam Wagner, I can lead students through Yin yoga sequences, where traditional yoga poses are held for a longer time and without a previous warm-up, but with the help of various props. The aim is to apply traction to our connective tissues, which is the only way to influence them. This still and meditative practice is quite intense and complements the more active yoga styles very well.
This yoga style creates more heat in the body than the hatha style, as postures follow each other at a more rapid pace. The challenge is to keep the breath calm and even, despite moving relatively quickly. It is a good style to “let off steam”. My aim when teaching this currently very popular style is to show students how to practice safely and to make sure the sequence relaxes their nervous system and leaves them feeling energetic and self-confident.
“Smiling is yoga for the mouth”
Thich Nhat Hanh