14 August 2015

Is Ashtanga yoga addictive?

Whilst reading Gurji Portrait of Sri K Patthabi Jois
 I came across an item written by Ashtanga teacher John Scott in which he was asked:

Do you think ashtanga yoga attracts a particular kind of person?

"I think it definitely attracts people who have an obsessive nature or an addictive nature 
I think the practice itself can be addictive, which is so clever. So anyone who has had a drug habit,
 for example, is perfect because you can swap one addiction for the yoga practice addiction. 
Now when you start working with the addiction of yoga, the not doing the yoga is a yoga in itself".

John goes on to say that for 5 years he practised every day and didn't want to miss a day.
 He says he was addicted and scared to "not do it for fear of letting it go".
 He also goes onto say how he feels Patthabi Jois understood this and put in full and dark moon
 days/rest days to give us an opportunity not to practice, "so people with obsessive natures are also
 challenged within the practice, to let go of the practice".

I found this a fascinating insight into to how the series is made up in a way to address some of the 
above issues. Of course, in the great scheme of things, having an addiction to yoga, is better than having
 an addiction to heroin or the likes; but addiction to anything holds us back.

By having a regular mindful yoga practice and adhering as best as you can to the roots of the practice,
you can embrace the changes that your yoga will bring and break down patterns that no longer work
 for you. This of course takes time and is what yoga is about. There is no fast track or quick fix with
 yoga, which is why having a teacher who has practised themselves for many years is very important
 to me. Staying close to the Ashtanga linage enables me to see the changes in my life and in the way
 I practice yoga.

Thank you to John Scott for sharing how it was for him in the early days. This resonated with me.

Gurui: A portrait of Sri K Pattabhi Jois
John Scott full item page 356

31 July 2015

Supporting Pregnant Students in a regular Yoga Class



CPD with Cherie Lathey of Yoga Mama at Yoga at The Space, Studland, Dorset 


Pregnancy is an amazing personal journey for a woman, both mentally and physically. Practising yoga during pregnancy can help women adapt to these changes in a positive way. Many yoga teachers often feel they do not have enough information or the confidence to integrate pregnant women into their general classes.

This one day CPD workshop will be led by Cherie Lathey, Director and Senior Yoga Teacher of Yoga Mama, and is approved by Yoga Alliance UK. This will be both a discussion and practical workshop. Teachers will leave feeling confident they have the relevant information to safely support their pregnant students.

The workshop will include:
  • General precautions and guidelines
  • How hormones can affect your student both physically and emotionally
  • Common ailments of pregnancy and how to work with these to ease symptoms
  • The importance of transitional poses within a class
  • Suitable asana (poses) and modifications
  • Suitable breath work (pranayama)
  • Suitable rest poses
  • Mula bandha and the pelvic floor
  • Optimal foetal positioning for later stages of pregnancy



BH19 3AE


Guruji Lives Here

Guruji lives here. from Yoga Workshop on Vimeo.

In July 1915, one of the world's most respected and revered yoga gurus was born under a full moon in Kowshika, India. The teachings of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois went on to influence infinite practices and practitioners around the world. On what is the 100th anniversary of his birth, we honor his legacy here, with infinite gratitude and humility. Thank you Guruji. Gratitude for one's guru can be a very private experience. However, for those who are comfortable publicly share their experiences with Guruji, we're using hashtag #guruji100 on Instagram so that everyone may contribute whatever content they choose.

23 July 2015

Guruji Lives Here.

Guruji Lives Here.

A video of ashtanga yoga students practising around the world, will be released on  the full moon day of July 31st 2015. It will show the global influence that Pattabhi Jois has had on so many people; many of whom (including myself), have never even met him

This video will show students simply showing up on their mats and practising yoga. This is a wonderful, moving tribute to Guruji who dedicated his life to Ashtanga yoga. A fitting celebration/dedication to a wonderful man in what would have been his 100th birthday year.

More to information to follow.....


21 July 2015

Experience true Turkish Delight with a yoga holiday.

If your looking for a yoga retreat this summer I could recommend these two teachers...

Experience true Turkish Delight!

Yoga Holiday in Huzur Vadisi, Turkey
Aug 17th – 23rd

With two amazing teachers

Sophie is really excited to be joining her friend and fellow teacher Helen McCabe to teach this week at the beautiful Suleyman’s Gardens in Huzur Vadisi in Southern Turkey.  Join these two wonderful teachers for a week of yoga, meditation, delicious organic vegetarian food and time to explore this stunning location .. or to simply relax!
Set in the tranquility of the mountains in Southern Turkey, Suleyman’s Garden is a very charming, small traditional farm with terraced vegetable fields, orchards and beautiful gardens, with stunning sea views. It is one of Turkey’s most well known and established yoga retreat venues and provides the perfect location in which to retreat from the stresses of daily life. This week is the perfect opportunity for experienced practitioners and those newer to the practice alike to  their yoga practice whilst also providing plenty of opportunity to explore, swim, eat incredible food, sunbathe by the little pool (or on the beach) or relax in the shade.  The weather is always very hot and sunny in August but with a welcome gentle breeze (being up in the hills).

The Yoga

With two experienced teachers and a small group, this retreat is suitable for everyone from longterm practitioners to complete beginners.  Helen and Sophie love to work closely with their students, whatever their level of practice so that each person will receive a lot of personal attention, particularly in the morning guided self practice classes.  There will also be the opportunity for complete beginners or those less familiar with ‘self practice’ to attend a led class in the mornings. Helen and Sophie both share a warm, fun and passionate approach to teaching Ashtanga Yoga.
The newly built shaded yoga shala is set amid the vegetable gardens and fruit trees, with lovely sea views and has space for 20. It is fully equipped with mats, belts, blocks, bolsters and blankets.

A Typical Day

  • Mornings yoga sessions will be followed by a delicious brunch
  • After brunch the day is yours to explore or relax by the pool or on the beach
  • Book a massage with the excellent on site therapist (not included)
  • optional gentle late afternoon sessions are available in which we will explore techniques of the practice or a guided meditation
  • We will gather for a relaxed dinner each night

 Food and Accommodation

Huzur Vadisi is famous for its amazing food. They even have their own cookbook! The local owners grow all their own organic vegetables and fruit for the kitchen to make the truly delicious meals. It is the food as much as the location, which helped us to decide this was the place to bring our guests. Suleyman and his family, who cook, clean and garden, are very welcoming and helpful.  Turkish village cooking is mainly vegetarian, so there are many unusual and varied vegetarian dishes from the local repertoire. Based on fresh, local, seasonal produce – fruit, vegetables, pulses, grains, nuts, cheeses, eggs and yoghurt.  Special diets can be accommodated to on request.
The accommodation is in simple, comfortable wooden cabins with verandas, and traditional stone and thatched huts, set amid lovely flowery gardens. There is room for groups of between 15-18 people, including teachers, in double, twin and single accommodation. Bathrooms facilities are shared, and conveniently located around the site, with ample showers, toilets and hot water.  There are also a few ensuite rooms too, available at a small supplement.  Staying at Suleyman’s Garden is very much like being a houseguest – it’s a very relaxed and friendly atmosphere, particularly welcoming for people holidaying on their own. There is also plenty of space to be by yourself and be quiet if you wish.

14 July 2015

Anti-aging benefits of yoga

Anti-ageing benefits of yoga
Regardless of what may happen, we are all going to age. However, it is how we age both mentally and physically that will affect our quality of life. According to yoga philosophy it is the flexibility of the spine that determines the age. You only have to look at yoga gurus - both past and present - to see that a regular yoga practice has a huge effect on the ageing process.

The body is supple and mobile and the brain remains active well into old age. Many yoga teachers look more youthful than their birth age and remain “young at heart”, living active lives well into their 90's. The current trend for a quick fix under the surgeons scalpel is just that; a “quick fix” to make one look youthful on the outside, while the rest of the body is degenerating in the usual way. Yoga and a yogic lifestyle allows the body to slow the ageing process down.


Stress is a major factor in ageing. By learning to control and use your breath (pranayama) to help control stressful situations, you are able to breathe more deeply and remain calm. BKS Iyengar puts this beautifully:
“Yoga teaches us to cure what need not be endured and endure what cannot be cured”
A yoga practice is about finding a different way to deal with stress through postures, breathing techniques, relaxation and meditation. A good diet will often follow a regular yoga routine. Once a student develops more control through the yoga practice healthier, choices seem to come naturally.

Yoga can be taken up at any age and takes many forms. Even after many years of a sedentary lifestyle you can take up and enjoy yoga.

Deep breathing (pranayama) fills every cell in the body with fresh oxygenated blood. Inversions, where the head is lower than the heart, have a relaxing effect on the heart and lungs; once again bringing fresh blood to the upper body and massaging the thyroid and parathyroid glands, thus soothing the nervous system.

Twists and forward bends are very good for detoxifying for the body. Internal organs such as the liver, spleen and pancreas are toned and massaged. A sluggish digestive system (constipation) will hang onto waste matter. Many yoga poses encourage elimination, therefore freeing up the bowel and keeping it healthy and free from disease.

The skin and the eyes look more radiant, the body moves more freely, the mind is active, but not on alert... All of this without stepping inside a doctor's practice!

05 July 2015

Too Clever-The Tibetan book of living and dying

"If you are too clever you could miss the point completely "
Pautrul Rinpoche
The Tibetan book of living and dying

18 June 2015

Summer class timetable

The summer timetable for classes run by Yoga Mama here at The Putney Clinic of Physical Therapy has been released. It comes into effect on Monday 22 June and lasts for 8 weeks. Prenatal Yoga and Pilates classes will continue as normal throughout the summer, but other courses may be shortened.

Day Course Time Teacher Duration Price
Mon Mat-based Pilates 7 - 8pm Laurent 6 weeks £56*
Mon Back / Core Rehab 8 - 9pm Rachel 6 weeks £56*
Tue Prenatal Yoga 6:45 - 7:45pm Claire Ongoing CLASS PASSES
Tue Prenatal Yoga 8 - 9pm Claire 6 weeks CLASS PASSES
Wed Tai Chi 9:30 - 10:30am Enid 4 weeks £56
Wed Postnatal Pilates 12 - 1pm Rachel 4 weeks £56
Wed Prenatal yoga 6:45 - 7:45pm Diane Ongoing CLASS PASSES
Wed Restorative yoga 8 - 9pm Diane 8 weeks £112
Thu Mum & Baby yoga 10:30 - 11:30am Hajni 4 weeks £56**
Fri Ashtanga Yoga 9 - 10:30am Cherie 4 weeks £64
Sat Beginners Ashtanga yoga 8:45 - 9:45am Degy 4 weeks £56
Sat Prenatal Yoga 10 - 11am Cherie Ongoing CLASS PASSES
Sat Prenatal Pilates 11:15am - 12:15pm Rachel Ongoing CLASS PASSES

* No class Monday 6th July
** No class Thursday 2nd July


To book your place on any of the courses advertised, call us on 020 8789 3881 or send an email to info@putneyclinic.co.uk.

16 June 2015

Autumn Pregnancy Yoga Teacher Training


18 - 20 SEPTEMBER AND 2 - 4 OCTOBER 2105

Bookings are now being taken on the Yoga Mama Autumn 2015 Pregnancy Yoga Teacher Training course. This 80-hour course, fully accredited by YogaAlliance UK is open to qualified yoga teachers and trainees and covers the following topics:

  • Asana, pranayama (breathing and relaxation techniques)
  • Sequencing pre and postnatal classes
  • The dos and don'ts of pregnancy yoga
  • Propping and assisting pregnant students
  • Pre and post natal anatomy for yoga
  • Common ailments associated with pregnancy
  • Setting up classes for pregnant students


The course costs £750. However, if you book and pay before 31st July 2015, you can take advantage of the early bird offer of £695.


For more information about the course, visit the Yoga Mama website.


To request an application form, please email education@yogamama.co.uk.


Once you have submitted your application form and your qualifications have been ratified, you can book your place on the course by calling 020 8789 3881 or by sending an email to info@putneyclinic.co.uk.

09 June 2015

Postnatal Yoga Teacher Training day


SUNDAY 5TH JULY 2015, 10AM - 5PM*

Yoga Mama will be running a Postnatal Yoga Teacher Training course on Sunday July 5th 2015 (10am – 5pm) at our studio in Putney, south west London. This one-day course is fully accredited by Yoga Alliance UK and is for qualified pregnancy yoga teachers.

This course is open to teachers who have completed the Yoga Mama Pregnancy Yoga Teacher Training or those with a similar pregnancy yoga qualification.


The course will cover the following:
  • Anatomy and physiology of postnatal women. This includes: pelvic floor recovery, hormonal changes, rectus separation and birth trauma.
  • Specific postnatal yoga practice, which will include safe core work.
  • Common complaints of postnatal women.
  • Emotional needs of postnatal women (including postnatal depression, feeding issues, loss of identity)
  • Running postnatal classes.


  • The course will include both lectures and practical sessions.
  • Throughout the day, there will be recap quizzes.
  • You will be asked to observe two postnatal yoga classes and write up observation notes (prior to attending or submitting within a reasonable time frame after the course).


You will receive a Yoga Mama postnatal certificate. You will also be able to use the training day towards your Yoga Alliance CPD points.

  • Cherie Lathey:  Senior Yoga Teacher and Director of Yoga Mama Teacher Training School. Director of The Putney Clinic of Physical Therapy.
  • Katie Howard:  Women's Health Physiotherapist and Clinical Pilates Instructor.
  • Alison Downey:  Midwife at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital.


The cost of this one day course is  £125. For Graduates of Yoga Mama Pregnancy Yoga Teacher Training Course, the cost is £110.


Email info@yogamama.co.uk for to apply for this course.

Upon confirmation of your place, bookings can me made via email on info@putneyclinic.co.uk or by telephone on 020 8789 3881.

* Subject to sufficient numbers