Insight/Vipassana Meditation, Still Flowing Yoga, Buddhist & Yoga Philosophy, Asana Technique
Gemma is the Director of and a Principal Teacher on Still Flowing Yoga Teacher Training.
My Yoga style:- I draw on and fuse together the Essence of Dynamic Vinyasa Forms, Yin, Restorative, Trauma Sensitive and Scaravelli Yoga and I favour an approach in asana that continually explores the creative tension between construction and deconstruction of the pose in order to contain and empower the body within the deep core structures, and awaken the spine.
This containment and internal stability gives a sense of boundary and safety from the inside out of the body, and balance and flow within the nervous system, so that appropriate expansion and opening can take place within each students system when ready.
I place deep trust in the innate wisdom and healing potential of the body/mind. I listen very carefully to and observe each students system in order that I may give appropriate individual instruction, adjustments and cues so as to slowly encourage and support each system back to balance or homeostasis as per Somatic Experiencing principles (Dr Peter Levines Body Orientated Trauma Healing)
I deliver a somatic interpretation of quintessential Buddhist and Yoga teachings and practices for todays person in a direct, informal and often playful style. With minimalist facilitation I guide students to skilfully explore what it is to embody awareness within movement and stillness, through the physical, sensate, emotional, cognitive and energetic realms and experience the multi dimensionality of being human.
My ongoing enquiry is how to integrate these practices within everyday normal life..
On the 200 hr trainings I teach Buddhist and Yoga Philosophy experientially through the Four Foundations of Mindfulness and the 4 Noble Truths woven together with Patanajali’s Classical Eight Limbs of Yoga.
The combination of techniques I have put together, work in a complementary way to contain and slowly discharge some of the powerful energy of trauma that is bound in the nervous system that can often comes up during month long intensives.
I am aware now that this powerful energy is at the root of much of the suffering that we experience, and acts as a major obstacle to the experience of the free flowing awareness of the here and now.
This energy when skilfully discharged can bring about a deeper sense of being able to inhabit the present moment freely, unbound, and more expanded fuller sense of Self.
Teachers and Influences
My main teachers and influences are her son Toby, her partner Sid, Thich Nhat Hanh, Peter Levine and his Somatic Experiencing Method, The Insight Meditation Society (many teachers :-most recent to date Steven Smith, Martin Aylward – (now studying under Martin Aylward, Resident Teacher @ www.moulindechaves.org
Silence, Nature, Animals, Danny Paradise in Yoga (original teacher) and .
Most recently I have worked with Bill Wood and have learnt a lot with him about the deconstruction of asana and how to teach a more individualised approach within a class context. Over the past few years I have attended regular workshops with Angela Farmer and Victor Van Kooten and Diane Long, and I am inspired by their wild and unorthodox approaches to asana, the gradual awakening of the spine, and their joyful attitudes.
I have also been taught by many humble, unnamed but certainly not unrecognised family, friends, teachers, mentors and students along the way…
I am half English (London) and half Spanish (Ibiza) and I find myself eternally split between these countries. It is for this reason that Still Flowing Yoga TT has found its home in Ibiza (it is in the blood!)
I am a full time mother and partner, and I live in Devon where I teach yoga at home.
I love people, children, animals, cooking, gardening, walking my dog Zeus, dancing, music, generally pottering around and perfecting the art of relaxation, skiing, riding, swimming in rivers, nature/trees, chaotic cities and people watching, laughing, learning practical skills that help me to live in a more engaged way, travelling, movement, indigenous culture, enquiring, exploring…
Professional Yoga/Meditation Biog
I have been involved in the yoga retreat and intensive yoga world for the past 13 years, practicing yoga and meditation for 15 years, and I have been running yoga teacher training programmes since 2008. I co owned and co directed El Convento Yoga and Meditation Retreat Centre in Andalucia, and I was co founder and director of AshtangaOm Retreats with my ex partner Nic Freeman which was established in 2001. My depth of experience in this field led me to the creation of Still Flowing Yoga Teacher Training which both consolidated, and allowed an ongoing expression of my knowledge of intensive yoga group facilitation, research and coordination of appropriate yoga curriculum material that would allow for a broad, open minded and integrated study into yoga and meditation.
Yoga is a journey that leads us back to our true selves. Yoga facilitates the realisation of this great intimacy and acceptance of ourselves, as we are – human beings first and foremost – within this mysterious/unfathomable world – only from here can we even start to contemplate matters of Spirit