Monday, 28 December 2015

Teacher Training & Mentoring with TaKeShiatsu

This year I have been trialling a teacher training method for yoga, meditation and shiatsu teachers. It is not a fixed program, but responds to the needs of each teacher in training and existing teachers who would like mentoring and support.  

I have been training in yoga, meditation and shiatsu for nearly 20 years and I have experienced many ways of helping prepare people to teach. It has become my passion to support teachers in all moments of their careers, as I believe teachers need encouragement, nurture and inspiration and that working teachers have a need for time for themselves outside of the classroom to recharge their batteries and give up, for just a little while, the role of being in charge.

In the sessions, we train and meet in circle, so each person is responsible for themselves and their learning. My role is to encourage you, listen to you and help you develop your talents. We discuss teaching practices, ethics, how to set up and maintain your business and relationships with clients, venues and employers.

Self-care is fundamental in my courses. In all teacher training and mentoring sessions there is movement, meditation, creativity as well as deep listening in circle.

Teaching practice with real students is also really important, so students and I can give trainees feedback in a real class situation. This can be for a single exercise, a part of a class or a whole class. Trainees can also assist me or observe in my class, or ask me to assist or observe them in their class.

The practices that we work with specifically are self-shiatsu with the extra-ordinary vessels, classical yoga, womb yoga and compassion-led mindfulness.

Training and mentoring lasts as long as you need it to, and takes place at your own pace, as and when you can attend a session. There are quaterly weekend group training sessions in Colchester, UK, regular opportunities on retreat in Sicily and one-to-one sessions in person and by Skype.

All trainees and teachers studying with me qualify for insurance that is affordable and covers full professional indemnity and public liability.

I believe that teaching is a vocation that chooses us, so if you feel that teaching is what you need to do, you must follow that desire and discover wherever it will take you...

The next weekend teacher training in Colchester is 2nd & 3rd January. Take part, observe or assist in an afternoon retreat on Saturday 2nd (£20), then the group training session is Sunday 3rd 9am-3pm (£65). Please email me to ask about places:

My next Sicily retreat where you can take part in teacher training is 5th-12th February:

For a one-to-one teacher training session in person or by Skype, please check here for availability:

Friday, 29 May 2015

Conscious Admin?

My shiatsu teacher Suzanne Yates taught me a little trick about admin. She said, "feel your feet while you're at your computer". Easier said than done?

I started by closing my eyes and disengaging from the computer to connect with myself and be aware of my body, and that was good for a few moments… though coming back to the computer and maintaining the connection was harder.

Inspired by Uma Dinsmore-Tuli, I tried wriggling my toes from time to time… which brings all kind of benefits, as my dear friend Claire Batey showed me… try it and you might know what she means ;) Again though, I wasn't able to maintain my concentration for very long… my mind kept wandering off into my tasks leaving my body behind, becoming cold and tired all over. My toes abandoned :)

I tried sitting on the floor and feeling my sitting bones too… sitting upright and feeling the ground beneath me was great, but I'd still get lost in tasks from time to time… losing my heart connection.

I kept up my practice of dancing whenever I felt like it, and that helped, except when I was very tired and just hurt my ankles from all the tarantella ;)

But then, probably because of a recent trip to Sicily, which teaches me more and more about trusting flow each time I'm there… I was able to feel my feet whatever my stting position, whether I'd taken a break or not… then once I let the liveliness in my feet come into my awareness, I could feel my breath and the rest of my body…

Of course this could all be caused by homegrown chilli… but I'll have to investigate that more thoroughly in another post, and definitely after a conversation with Fiona Mealing!

What do you do to keep yourself balanced and energised while doing admin or sitting at a computer?