Cultivating balance through yoga and mindful living

Lisa Colby SYT

I am a Senior Yoga Alliance registered teacher & have been teaching for more than 10 years, practicing for almost 20 years, first in the absence of a teacher, from books and dvds. I recall the first book, a gift from a friend (Thankyou Caz) who clearly recognized my need to chill out & find a way to deal with my often out of control anxiety. My first wobbly headstands were in the front room with our dog & my young son watching . . . perplexed. The beginnings of something so incredible that it has shaped my life for the past 20 years.

There was a deep feeling that there was something here for me from the very beginning, way before I even remotely understood that I didn’t have to stand on my head to find it ! Something peaceful, nourishing and constructive, much needed after younger years that were destructive & damaging. As I moved towards better health I became a runner & a gym addict, running cleared my mind but it didn’t ground or centre me. I played around with yoga classes but didn’t quite connect – my mind fidgeted, my obsessive, striving nature was dissatisfied . . . . . & then came Ashtanga Vinyasa a challenging & dynamic practice – It bought my spirit home, rooted me to the earth & quickly became the thing I would rush home from work for . . . to roll out my mat and connect to my breath, the running shoes were tossed into the corner & Ashtanga held my hand & took me all over the world. My initial accredited training was also Ashtanga Vinyasa & I practiced & trained with many incredible teachers in this discipline, some of which include Danny Paradise, David Swenson, Nawajoyti, Lino Miele & Brian Cooper, to whom I am truly grateful.

The love for yoga grew & expanded into other styles, Vinyasa flow helped me to find the freedom to be creative, a much needed outlet that I had not fully realized while Ashtanga was my main practice. I discovered Yin which taught me patience & Scaravelli inspired practices with compassionate teachers awakened my sensitivity & curiosity. Learning from Catherine Annis was inspirational & later wonderful intensives with Donna Farhi & Sarah Powers exploring further the endless possibility for becoming more sensitive both as a student & a teacher.

After years of repetitious exercise finding yoga in all its wonderful forms was something of an awakening. Over time the experience & the influence of so many amazing teachers, trainings & many intensives, retreats and workshops synthesized into a practice & a teaching style that is varied, creative & intuitive. Yoga that breathes grows and changes with life, energy & the seasons. I teach classes that suit all types, all seasons & all needs. Creative classes that blend strength, flow, flexibility and connection to breath & lighter classes that focus on surrender, softness and the release of deeper held tensions. My teaching is sensitive & I encourage students to become quiet and turn their attention inwards so that they can hear what their bodies have to tell them, to practice with lightness, deep awareness & connection to breath.

Alongside yoga I love nature and still require the grounding aspects of being outside and among the trees, I surround myself with animals and find a dog to befriend almost everywhere that I go, at home with my partner we foster dogs from Romania that need a little time and patience before they can be re-homed.

I owe so much to the discovery of yoga, friendships, yoga family, the people that support & love me, so many adventures, a way of stilling a very active mind, connecting to nature, excepting myself as I am & others as they are, a way of living & coping in a chaotic world & of finding my peace. It is a joy to share and an honour to teach.