Therapeutic Yoga

Whether it’s a vague feeling that all is not well, or a sense that the body/mind is in armed rebellion against us, or any of the stages in between, living with dis-ease or un-wellness can leave us feeling as though we are living half a life.  Whether the condition has its roots in the body, the mind or the emotions, living this way can lead to disconnection from, disappointment in, or even a sense of loathing of, ourselves.  We may find ourselves trapped in the margins – always, never, everything, nothing.  The condition – whatever it is – is something which we fight with, but at the same time become increasingly defined by.

In the 15th century, the yogic scholar Svatmarama wrote that the science of yoga ‘is the sanctuary for those suffering every type of pain’ (Hatha Yoga Pradipika, II.10).  The International Association of Yoga Therapists describes yoga therapy as ‘the process of empowering individuals to progress towards improved health and wellbeing through the application of the teaching and practice of yoga’.

Yoga Therapy starts from a place of accepting each client as they are and a belief that each client intuitively knows what is best for them, of unconditional positive regard for the client, and from a certainty that the client has within them the capacity to heal themselves; an approach which is authentic, emphatic and empowering.  Working with the whole person, the focus is always on what is possible, what can be improved; rather than on what is broken and dysfunctional, what can be fixed by the ‘expert’.  This holistic approach to our clients’ health and wellness allows us to work with every aspect of them, from the purely physical to the quintessentially spiritual, creating personalised programmes to address specific issues.

One-on-one sessions of therapeutic yoga can be booked through our booking app: Mondays at 4pm with Sue Mc Hale and Wednesdays at 9am with Gail Stephens.

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Gail Stephens

My name is Gail Stephens, and I am a Yoga therapist, teacher and mindfulness practitioner.

As a yoga therapist, my practice is rooted in the belief that every client instinctively knows what is best for them, and from a certainty that each client has within them the capacity to heal themselves; an authentic approach which is intuitive, empowering and empathic.

I work with every facet of each client; the physical body, the emotions, and the mind, also the subtle energies, and the breath. I am specifically interested in the synergy between ancient eastern philosophy and wisdom, and contemporary western scientific thinking; and I incorporate both into my practice. Perhaps, after all, the ancients were using the best scientific language available to them.

So, starting with the healing power of the breath, and working holistically, my focus is on what is possible, what can be improved, as well as what perhaps must be accepted; rather than on what is broken and dysfunctional, and what can only be fixed by the ‘expert’. This approach to each client’s health and wellbeing allows me to create personalised programmes to address specific issues, at the same time considering every aspect of themselves, from the purely physical to the quintessentially spiritual.

I work with a range of conditions, including anxiety and depression, chronic pain, CFS/ME and autoimmune diseases.

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Sue McHale

Hello! My name is Susan McHale, yoga teacher, yoga therapist and hypnotherapist.

Yoga is a complete, holistic system, providing powerful tools for healing and transformation. I teach with a focus on breath as the key to connecting mind and body, learning to let go of physical and psychological tensions and growing in self awareness. Breathing is the most important aspect of yoga practice for adults aged between 25 and 70 years where managing our energy is paramount. I am passionate about empowering people, whether it be to live a more balanced lifestyle or to alleviate pain and discomfort, to grow spiritually or to achieve a quite specific and personal goal. I want the people I work with to have the best possible experience. I ensure confidentiality and aim to create a safe space for you in therapy.

Hypnotherapy partners well with yoga in the shared understanding that the subconscious mind has a profound relationship with the body, as well as influencing thoughts, feelings and behaviour patterns. I only offer to use it where I believe it would be appropriate and helpful and always with the explicit consent of the student/client.

I have been an HPC (Health Professions Council) registered Occupational Therapist for many years and I have experience of working in the NHS within a range of health and well-being areas. My areas of expertise are in mental health (anxiety, depression, trauma-related conditions and psychosis) and in chronic fatigue and pain.