Te Anau yoga instructors gain new skills

Reprinted from the Fiordland Advocate 29 July, 2010

Yoga practice in Te Anau has been given a boost after two local woman travelled to Australia to complete an intensive 12-day teacher training course.

Kerri-Anne Edge and John Ogilvie (founder of the Byron Yoga Centre)

Kerri-Anne Edge, who has been teaching in Te Anau for three-and-a-half years, and Helen Bell who also teaches locally, attended the course at the Byron Yoga Centre in northern New South Wales which was designed for people wanting to advance their own personal practice as well as those keen to teach.

Classes started at 6am and the day normally finished between 8:30 and 9pm, with instruction given by 10 specialist teachers. The students had an hour off in the middle of the day to enjoy the beach or just take some time out. Topics included teaching yoga asana (postures), with a focus on instructing beginners safely, anatomy and physiology, yoga for preganancy, yoga philosophy and meditation.

Kerri-Anne said that intensive training was now being followed up by correspondence work and an expectation that they keep up a daily personal practice of their own.

“The biggest challenge now, from my perspective, is completing the requirement to attend classes taught by trained teachers elsewhere. For people living in big centres this is easy but obviously here it is a four hour round trip to attend a yoga class in Queenstown or Invercargill.”

However, she said the effort would be worth it becasue, once completed both women will hold an internationally recognised qualification in yoga teaching and also be qualified to supervise student teachers who are undertaking their own training.

Te Anau Yoga was recently formalised to become an incorporated society and classes are held in the town three days a week.

“I have been really enjoying bringing back what I have learnt from the course to my teaching here in Te Anau,” Kerri-Anne said.

“The Byron Yoga Centre as established in 1988 by John Ogilvie, who wanted to see yoga avaialble in every community in the world. It is a not for profit organisation which is in keeping with yogic philosophy – rather than being centred on making money. This aligns wuth the principles of Te Anau Yoga Inc. which is non-profit.”

The style of yoga the woman studies is desbribed as Purna which encompasses the eight limbs of yoga (including yoga philosophy and meditation) rather than just focusing on postures.

They now have options for continuing their study into the future including the Level 2 teaching course, Yoga Therapy (working one-on-one with individuals who have special medical conditions or needs) and yoga for children.

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