My Yoga Journey from France to Zululand by Pat Williamson


yogi patMy first taste of yoga was in a private class in a small town in Northern France but there’s no doubt at all that I was hooked from the very start.  I clearly  remember how grounded and calm I felt after that first class;  how I was captured by the symmetry of the postures, the physicality and mindfulness of the practice, amazed that I could sit still and just listen and feel my own breath moving, pleasantly surprised that after only a short 1hr class I could feel, quite simply, good inside myself.  It was a far cry from my usual fast and furious aerobic and gym classes practised to loud, thumping music or my weekly tennis marathons where winning was everything. I still carried on with the latter, but had found a new balance in my life. Many years have passed since then, but those first impressions still remain the foundations of my personal yoga philosophy and I try to share that philosophy with my students at every class.

After participating in an intensive month long yoga retreat at the Krishnamacharya Mandiram in Chennai, I went on to complete my teacher training with the British Wheel of Yoga, both of which gave me an excellent grounding in Hatha yoga techniques and styles.

The yoga I teach draws on my own yoga influences over the years and is based on my belief that a yoga practice is individual to each student’s needs and abilities at the time. I invite my students to take each posture to a deeper level than just its physical form by linking  body, mind and breath to feel the yoga from inside – ‘being’ rather than just ‘doing’ each posture or practice  I encourage them to make each class a personal experience, that responds to their own individual needs and helps them develop an awareness and curiosity of the deeper effects of yoga .

I believe that, as their teacher, not only should I be offering them a safe, well balanced, well thought out and mindful yoga class, I should be giving them also the tools with which they can safely build their own, individual practice.
the yoga hut

Surrounded by nature and facing East, the Yoga Hut at Macadamia Lodge is energised by the rising sun and offers a peaceful space in which to practise. Whether beginners or more advanced, my wish is that after their class, each student may have, quite simply, that same ‘good inside’ feeling that I had all those years ago.

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