Principal and Course Director
Simon Low (BWY-accredited, E-RYT 500 and SYT) is the principal of The Yoga Academy, which offers foundational and continuing education to yoga teachers and students in the UK and internationally. After a career in the music industry based out of London and New York, Simon undertook training as yoga teacher and therapist 25 years ago with renowned yoga teacher, therapist and author Dr Larry Payne at Samata International in Los Angeles, California. These studies were augmented by Simon’s training in macrobiotics, bodywork and psycho-spiritual enquiry.
Simon’s foundational teachings are informed by the teachings of Sri T Krishnamacharya and his primary students. Simon’s current teachings reflect his continued training and on-going studies with international teachers in many forms of Hatha and Classical yoga, traditional Chinese and eastern medicine, Chi Kung, ancient and contemporary healing methodologies, centred-movement, psychology and physical therapy. Simon has also studied in A.H. Almaas’ Ridhwan School, but his primary teacher lives within himself, a relationship he continues to cultivate with the help and guidance of his current teachers and practice. He inspires others to cultivate the same relationship within themselves and their own yoga practices.
Following many years of teaching in the UK, Simon co-founded Triyoga in London, where he was Director of Yoga until 2003, since which time he has concentrated on teacher training at The Yoga Academy and on leading study immersions, workshops and rejuvenating yoga retreats around the world. Over the years, Simon has developed a unique and personal teaching style and now practices and teaches a harmonious combination of Yin and Yang Yoga. Not a set system but a balanced approach that can inform and enrich all styles of yoga, Yin and Yang Yoga offers fresh vitality to yoga practice, kindness and respect to the human form, transformative breathing practices, and for the mind – the space for peace and tranquillity.
In 2007, Simon released his now very popular DVD “Yin and Yang Yoga” and in spring 2015, Yin Yoga App for iPhone.
Course Teacher and Training Course Manager
After an introduction to yoga through the dynamic practice of Astanga Vinyasa yoga in 1997 in her native Finland, Eija began an in-depth exploration into yoga practice and eventually teaching, first completing teacher training at foundation, intermediate, pregnancy and yoga therapy levels with the Cairns Yoga Academy in Australia. Eija is now also qualified in Iyengar Yoga, and has completed Advanced Yoga Studies with Donna Farhi, has studied in depth with Tias Little, Aadil Palkhivala, Julie Gudmestad and Simon Low, and is certified in Relax & Restore® Yoga by Judith Lasater.
Also a professional translator and reviser/editor with a former career in corporate communications in the banking and oil industries, Eija has translated into Finnish and edited works by BKS Iyengar, John Scott, Petri Räisänen, Louise Grime, Donna Farhi and Maya Fiennes as well as the British Medical Association’s comprehensive book about back care.
Eija now teaches internationally alongside Simon Low for The Yoga Academy and is responsible for The Yoga Academy’s extensive teacher training materials and course management. She continues her study of yoga, somatic awareness, movement and healing modalities, with a special interest in yoga for therapeutic applications, postural integration, Thomas Hanna somatics and the Feldenkrais method.
Dedicated to safe, skilful and effective, anatomically conscious teaching and practice, Eija offers individually tailored and informed guidance and support to students within the led classes and sees students in one-to-one sessions to help them unlearn limiting postural habits and musculo-skeletal holding patterns.
Student Mentor and Course Assistant Teacher
Belinda (Bindie) Edwards trained with Simon Low at the Yoga Academy and teaches in Suffolk. Yoga has been a part of her life for over 30 years and in 2010 she made the decision to train as a teacher in order to share the joy and benefits of yoga with others. Bindie’s main area of interest is in maintaining muscular balance in order to preserve fluid, pain-free movement into later life. She continues to study with a number of internationally renowned teachers, including Julie Gudnestad, Doug Keller and Donna Farhi, towards her goal as a yoga therapist. Bindie works with Simon Low and Eija Tervonen at The Yoga Academy as a course faculty member, student mentor and class assistant, helping to ensure that each Yoga Academy trainee teacher achieves their chosen outcomes from the course.
Sue qualified with the British Wheel of Yoga in 1993 and has been teaching and studying yoga for over 20 years. She has post graduate qualifications in the Krishnamacharya tradition and has studied several times with TKV Desikachar at the KYM in Chennai. She is trained in Pregnancy Yoga (Birthlight) and has studied Post Natal and Well Woman Yoga with Francoise Freedman. Over the years she has been fortunate to study with many inspirational teachers in different styles but in particular with Baron Baptiste, Francoise Freedman, Simon Low and her primary teacher Gill Lloyd. She continues to study regularly with Gill. Sue teaches weekly at Triyoga Primrose Hill, Chelsea and at various venues in Surrey. She offers one to one tuition, teaches workshops and takes small groups on yoga weekends and holidays. She is co-presenter of the DVD "Beat Fatigue with Yoga". For further details about Sue, please visit: www.suedelfyoga.co.uk
Jan Palmer's passion is yoga, but her background is in education and she holds a B.Sc. in Life Sciences and a P.G.C.E. and an M.A in Education. Jan has forty years teaching experience, fifteen of them in yoga. As a faculty head at Aylesford School Sports College in 1995–2005, Jan guided student teachers through their teaching practices. Jan then held a three-year tenure in Adult Education as Programme Manager for Healthy Living, in which role she trained and supported health and fitness professionals in their lesson planning.
From 2008, Jan has been a full-time yoga teacher and currently teaches yoga in gyms and health clubs and offers private classes. Originally qualifying with a BWY diploma, Jan recently graduated from The Yoga Academy’s 200-hour Yin and Yang Yoga Teacher Training and Study Immersion, so she has an excellent working knowledge of the individual Yoga Academy teacher trainee experience.
Jan’s yoga journey has been inspired and enlightened particularly by Simon Low, Gary Carter, Sarah Powers, Andrea Kwiatkowski, Peter Blackaby and Dr Ruth Gilmore.
Gill has been a yoga teacher since 1974 and has taught, studied and practiced within the teaching approach of TKV Desikachar since 1976. Gill received the BWY Diploma in 1977 and served on its Executive and Education Committees and was a DCT for 10 years. She has studied Yoga therapy and Vedic chanting in India at the Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram and Vedavani Chanting Institute and continues her studies with TKV Desikachar both in India and the UK. She was Director of Viniyoga Britain from 1998 until 2002 and when Desikachar set up a new training organisation in 2006, The Krishnamacharya Healing and Yoga Foundation, she was appointed as one of its first teacher trainers. She leads seminars and In Service training events in the UK and abroad and offers one-to one tuition at her home in Sussex. She also teaches the philosophy module for the Yoga Academy’s teacher training course.
Gary Carter has been teaching and practising yoga and various other movement practices for over 25 years. He studied with Mary Stewart, Sophy Hoare, John Stirk, Peter Blackaby and, after a brief time with Vanda Scaravelli, met and studied with Diane Long in Florence and Rome. He has also studied in Shiatsu, Chi Ne Tsang and Craniosacral Therapy, as well as dissection at the Institute of Anatomy in Vienna. In 1998, Gary met Tom Myers and studied the Anatomy Trains theory in depth, completing the KMI Structural Integration training.
From 2007–2011, Gary ran the Science of Movement course at Middlesex University. He had his Natural Bodies centre in Brighton for over 20 years, and now runs his popular applied anatomy courses in England, Scotland and Ireland.
For further information about Gary, please visit www.naturalbodies.co.uk.
Julie Gudmestad has been active in Portland, Oregon, as a yoga teacher and licensed physical therapist for over 30 years. Her yoga teaching is primarily informed by the Iyengar method, with modifications to the traditional approach that have significantly enhanced its effectiveness, safety and clarity. Julie has integrated Western medical knowledge with yoga training into a unique teaching style, and has taught workshops in Europe, Canada and throughout the U.S. She is a certified Iyengar yoga teacher and a member of the American Physical Therapy Association, and was the author of the Yoga Journal column “Anatomy of a Yogi” for over seven years
Julie presents her teachings in a very clear and accessible manner. You will learn materials and skills that will be highly user friendly in both teaching and practice. Julie addresses areas of the anatomy which are common areas of injury, acute and chronic pain and poor postural awareness, and shares knowledge and guidance to help you become more aware and skilled in the effective teaching and practice of yoga in a therapeutic context.
"A very knowledgeable and inspiring teacher"
Hilary Perkins on Anatomy, Alignment and Asana, July 2010
For further information about Julie, please visit www.gudmestadyoga.com
Jane's role in the faculty is developing and advising on quality assurance, to ensure the teacher training course continually improves. She works as the Internal Verifier, liasing with the British Wheel of Yoga External Verifier, to ensure the course meets the standards required of a British Wheel Accredited Group.
With an extensive background in education, developing quality assurance in large organisations and assessing and verifying standards, Jane is passionate about providing a service of the highest quality.
Jane has practised yoga over 40 years, studying first with the British Wheel of Yoga, then qualifying as a Yoga Academy trained teacher.
She teaches in Worthing and is very interested in how yoga can improve our well being physically, mentally and emotionally. There is emphasis on how restorative yoga can reduce the impact of stress in busy lives.
For further information about Jane, please visit www.yogaworthing.co.uk
“May we be a breath of life to the body of humankind”
Hazrat Inayat Khan