Austin will be joining the Yoga West teaching staff from next year. Initially he will take a level 1-2 Vinyasa flow class at 6:45am on a Tuesday and a level 1-2 Vinyasa flow class at 2pm on a Sunday. To find out a bit more about him read on….

How did you get in to yoga?

I first practiced yoga at a gym back in 2000. My practice was semi regular, occasional, once or twice a week. Just enough to make it difficult! It wasn’t until I had chronic back pain that stemmed from an old back injury, that I immersed myself in my practice, making it a daily practice, often twice daily.

Was there a moment when you realised that you wanted to pursue yoga seriously?

When I saw results in the mobility in my back and the eradication of the pain. I was told by a back consultant I would never be able to do the things that I could do after 6 months of serious practice. I wanted to do share the practice and it was that point that I decided I would learn more and become a teacher. So initially it was for therapeutic reasons.

Has yoga changed you?

Yes, without a doubt and for the better, I’m still the same person as I was before but now I’m a better more aware version of myself. Yoga is about evolving, observing questioning and challenging yourself. Changing the things that need to be changed that no longer serve you. In order to do this you need to be mindful.

What is your approach to teaching?

Anti-dogmatic! I believe that there is no such thing as a one size fits all system of yoga. Each body is unique and our yoga practice and teaching must reflect our individuality. I’ve been told that my classes are” energising, creative and flowing, balancing a strong physical workout with a calming restorative element.” I like to keep the mood light, instructions clear and interesting. The practice must be fun, then we’ll want to practice more.

What advice would you give to people who are considering taking up yoga?

Keep an open mind, have fun and don’t be intimidated as we were all beginners once. Turn up, be patient and kind with yourself. Little by little you’ll see improvements. When you do thank yourself and carry on practicing.

Do you have a favourite yoga quote?

“The hardness of a diamond is part of its usefulness, but its true value is in the light that shines through it.” - BKS Iyengar