Q & A

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How did you get started with yoga?

I first got introduced to yoga when I went in to Phoenix rehab, 1/2/2018. Lou was giving a free class of Bikram yoga to the rehab. I first went to try it out, as I decided to take everything on offer in rehab. Do things I hadn't done before. I have been doing Bikram for over 2 years now. I love the discipline I get from it.

Did you enjoy visiting the studio from rehab?

Lou has a welcoming, safe place to practice in. As a teacher she has a calming vibe to her. She makes you feel comfortable enough to try new things and also push yourself a bit more with the encouragement she gives you. 

Was the change from Bikram to Y12SR welcome?

I was open minded about it. I know Lou well enough that she wouldn't want to do anything negative for her students. She always has the welfare of her students first and foremost. 

Why did more people in recovery start attending yoga?

Its because it is an invitational practise. Bikram is an instruction based practise. You are also encouraged to speak in Y12SR - in Bikram it's a 'no no'. 

Were you surprised when Lou suggested yoga training?

Yes. I have always doubted my own capabilities. And for Lou to suggest that I go to get trained to be a Y12SR leader - to say I was surprised is an understatement; even though I knew she wouldn't advise me to do anything to set me up to fail. 

How did you feel about the fundraiser for Spain?

I had never been tae Spain afore, and as a volunteer on benefits, a thought I wouldn't be able to go. I never got my hopes up for it. Though I was thinking how kool it would be to go an get some teacher training from Lou. Then Lou got enough together to make it a reality. As usual Lou gets it done.  

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Phoenix Futures rehab contributed to the trip?

I was overwhelmed when they told me that they would get ma passport. Never had that kinda stuff done fur me afore. When they said it was an investment to utilise what I can do...again never had anyone say that I have skills that are a benefit for others 

So you got some teacher training in Spain?

It gave me confidence, that Lou was willing to teach me stuff. I know that Lou would not get me involved way this if she never thought that I was capable. It helped me realise that I can be uncomfortable doing something, but that I can push through my fears. Of course I was nervous. I had never done anything like it before. I have self doubt, but Spain taught me that I'm capable of teaching.

You've led Y12SR sessions at the studio and the rehab?

I'm more confident teaching a class at Phoenix as they don't know me there. They know me as someone who has come to do Y12SR with them. They don't know that I have self doubt, which makes it easier to teach them.

You started your own sessions in Coatbridge?

I love going to Coatbridge. It's great too see people who haven't done yoga before: before they are nervous, and then after they have a smile. It's great to see them get more confidence every time, and to speak more openly. I have feed back forms that they fill out. And the difference is noticeable every week. The first time I was really nervous, when I seen that they were the same, I knew I had to behave more confident so that they could have a better experience. 

And teaching yoga in the rehab?

It gives them extra stuff to help them with the stress of what's going on just now with lockdown. As we say 'the issues live in our tissues'.

You got double page spreads in newpapers?

It was very surreal. I was nervous, excited, scared. I didn't like being in the paper at the time - felt as if I was showing off. But I thought if one person finds out about Y12SR and wants to go, I have an opportunity to reach them. Now I know that people took something out of it.

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And the Kaye Adams Radio Show?

I was glad that people were saying that it's not easy growing up where I did. And that they understood why I was the way I was. And Kaye saying that she liked my honesty. 

Did you ever imagine your life as it it now?

I would never have thought in a million years that I would be doing what I am now. Even when I started to get the goodness from yoga. Now that I am doing this, I would like to give the most people the opportunity to have a go at it. If one person gets a bit of what I get from it, I will be a very happy person.