It was then that she became a total convert. She slept better after every class, any stress from her day fell away and she became more flexible. Her posture improved and she felt happier and more positive. In 2010 Clare completed a 200 hour yoga teacher training course with Sivananda in the Indian Himalayas.
She’s been teaching ever since – at the Sivananda centre in Putney, in various village halls and privately teaching groups of hefty blokey athletes preparing for Iron Man triathlons.
Clare has completed training in pregnancy yoga and also in teaching people with ME/CFS with Fiona Agombar through Yoga Campus.
The lessons of her 500 hour training
In 2012 Clare completed a 500 hour training with Michel Besnard in Thailand through Yogasana. Having studied with both Iyengar and Pattabhi Jois (Ashtanga), Michel taught her perhaps the most important lesson of all: to accept her body as it is – warts and all – and she is grateful for this. Clare isn’t the most flexible person and has problems with her lower back. Michel told her that sometimes the best teachers aren’t the ones who have super bendy yogi bodies, but they’re the ones who understand the needs of students and know what it’s like to have limitations. And anyway, who cares! We just have to enjoy our practice.
On Michel’s course, she also learnt how to teach yin yoga with Nora Mangiamele and got a taste for Acroyoga with Arianne Traverso.
Clare enjoys the alignment aspects of Iyengar and has had periods of study with the Himalaya Iyengar Yoga Centre with Sharat Arora in Goa. Whilst in India, she also had the honour of observing BKS Iyengar himself teaching classes.
Yin and gentle yoga
Now back in the UK, the yoga continues! Clare studies yin with Sarah Powers and Norman Blair and has started teaching yin classes and workshops in London and Hertfordshire.
She also teach gentle classes – blending a mix of postures and yin poses with a focus on alignment and deep relaxation. Also, if you have a visual impairment or have ME/CFS and live in Hertfordshire she can help you.
I loved learning yoga with Clare. I’ve been struggling with ME for nearly thirty years and the idea of yoga has always been an attractive one but I just didn’t believe I could tackle it without collapsing. Clare really did understand my need to go slowly, gently and with loads of time just to relax and breathe. Her approach was extremely empathic, calm and encouraging – I really can recommend her to you.