In the following interview David tells us what drew him to yoga initially and the Scaravelli inspired type of yoga he has since qualified to teach. He also explains what participants can expect from his classes.
What attracted you to yoga?
“I came to yoga quite late in life, in my fifties, and it was really part of an attempt to look after myself a bit better.”
What were the main benefits to you personally?
“Men can get very stiff in their upper backs and shoulders and become quite rigid, so the first benefit for me was flexibility and a realisation that you can do something about your physical state.
“Yoga also provokes an internal curiosity about your body and as you become more knowledgeable through practice, you don’t just give into aches and pains but think about what is behind them.
“I also began to get more control over my breathing, became fitter, started sleeping better and thinking about my posture more – which can be a problem for the middle-aged.”
What made you decide to train as a teacher?
“Yoga was so beneficial for me that I worked at it quite hard and decided to train as a teacher while I was gradually retiring from my long career as a psychotherapist. I particularly wanted to teach older people, who were coming to yoga in middle age.”
You have recently completed the London Yoga Teacher Training Group’s (‘LYTTG’) London Yoga Teacher Training Course (‘LYTTC’). What was it that appealed to you about this course in particular?
“Most yoga students try various kinds of yoga and if they stick with it they eventually find the style that suits them best. That happened to me, and I eventually discovered the distinctive yoga that is taught by LYTTG, influenced by Mary Stewart and Vanda Scaravelli.
“The approach is very thoughtful, pragmatic and calm, and it was the style that suited me best. The yoga is organised around what your body needs. It is slow but physically demanding when you are ready for it to be.
“I have been involved in all sorts of teaching throughout my life and I was very impressed by the LYTTG team. Their introductory course was so helpful that I applied to train as a teacher. Their teacher training course is accredited by the British Wheel of Yoga and is extremely well taught.”
What can participants expect from your Friday classes?
“At the moment I teach three classes at Clerkenwellbeing, all on a Friday. The early morning class at 8am and the lunchtime class at 12pm both last for an hour and are straightforward Hatha Yoga, influenced by Vanda Scaravelli’s teachings. We go through a slow and thoughtful sequence of asanas, paying attention to breath, gravity and balance, and end with pranayama and savasana.
“The other class at 10am is Gentle Yoga and lasts for 90 minutes. This is on the same lines as the other classes but more individually oriented to the needs of each student, and with more time for breathing and resting poses. This class would really suit older people and students who are new to yoga or worried about their physical health.
“My classes are open to all abilities but anybody worried about their physical state should think about Gentle Yoga. All of the classes are small and intimate.”
You can find out more about David’s classes or your place here.