Yoga came to my life at an early age of 15 when I was learning Jazz and contemporary dance with a reputed Indian choreographer. As a young dancer, I enjoyed yoga stretches for warming up and relaxation before and after my dance practice. It was only after a lower back injury in dance class roused my curiosity about what keeps the body healthy, that I started practising Iyenger yoga recommended by my dance teacher. This restorative practice helped in providing balance for my over trained and weak muscles. I also learned how to discipline my mind and body with correct postural alignment and meditation. 

Over the years I tried and followed other exercise and well being disciplines but rediscovered the huge benefits of yoga after a traumatic childbirth. This left me with nerve damage and lower back misalignment for which I was advised to wear a lumber support belt. The physical pain coupled with the mental struggle to recover, led me towards restorative yoga classes. The practise of pranayama, chanting and mediation led to my body building strength and stamina and my mind gaining clarity. Within six weeks I managed to discontinue the use of the belt that supported my spine, my body was supple and I started to live with awareness of how to look after my well being. What had started as a healthy yoga addiction soon grew into consistent yoga practise.

This evolutionary journey finally led me back to my birthplace and the land of yoga itself; India. While still recuperating in Delhi, I trained intensively to become a Yoga Teacher, revelling in the sweat, pain and glory of the strenuous process. This teacher’s training course gave me a much deeper understanding of myself and my practise. For me, yoga was always more than just going to a studio and taking a class – it was an experience in self awareness and knowledge, a way of life and a way of self study. From there, I went on to master advanced teaching/training techniques studying with teachers from different schools like Baba Ramdev's Patanjali yoga classes in Delhi, Sadhguru's Isha hatha yoga classes in Delhi and London, various meditation art of living events from Sri Sri Ravishankar in India and UK. I continue my passion of practising yoga under the guidance of Yogrishi Vishvketu's Akhand yoga classes, Rishikesh, India. 

Qualifications and certifications:

Yogmanthan, Delhi, India

Isha hatha Yoga centre - Delhi and London

Patanjali arogya kendra, Delhi, India

Art of living yoga and meditation centre, Delhi, India

Memberships and associations:

Indian Association of Yoga

Yoga Vidya International

British Wheel of Yoga

I believe that we can all learn to utilise the powerful tradition of yoga to promote sustainability and healing for our individual needs, even in our modern way of life.

ANJALI SMITH