Matthew first discovered yoga in his teens, practising with his mother, but it was only once into his 30's that he came back to yoga as a partner practice to rock climbing. He soon realised, as many do, that as well as being an excellent discipline in its own right to help those who have limited mobility and fitness, yoga can also provide huge benefits to many other exercise regimes and this sparked his interest in yoga for climbers, runners, skiers, dancers, movers, gymnasts, and many other activities.
He trained to be a yoga teacher with Mark Freeth and Anna Robertshaw-Freeth at The Freestyle Yoga Project, choosing that particular teacher training course because of its no nonsense approach to yoga and movement, and is a Registered Teacher with Yoga Alliance Professionals.
He's particularly interested in yoga for men. Yoga was originally practised by men (only) and he's keen to redress the balance in modern yoga. His classes targeted at men focus specifically on how the male body differs from the female body, and how the male mind differs from the female mind.
His yoga style is down to earth, practical, physical, straightforward. His classes are mindful but not spiritual, welcoming and accessible to everyone regardless of your belief or spirituality. You'll learn about alignment, balance, strength and flexibility, and how to work with your own body in the way that's most beneficial to you. Expect support and encouragement, and hands on adjustments if that's something that will help your practice. Come with an open mind and bags of enthusiasm!
He currently teaches all over the South East, including classes in Blackheath, Greenwich, Clapham, Vauxhall, and Pimlico (see classes page for more details) and is available for one to one sessions anywhere in London.
WHAT'S ON OFFER
Beginners classes are ideal as a starting point for anyone interested in Yoga and how it can be physically beneficial to you in body, but also in mind. These classes focus on fundamental yoga poses and sequences, concentrating on alignment and body awareness. They offer something to the first timer and the more experienced yogi who's looking to deepen their practice as we break down poses and sequences, talk though positioning, ask questions, and explore together. There is no Sanskit or chanting in these classes, and the general vibe is calm, but fun and informative.
MIXED ABILITY CLASSES
Mixed Ability classes take things a step further than Beginners classes, but the principle is the same. We'll start the hour with a dynamic flow sequence that will develop and grow as the term progresses, and then continue the hour with some tricker and more challenging poses. If you have a reasonable level of fitness, or possibly some yoga experience, this class is for you. There is no Sanskrit or chanting in these classes, and you can expect a physical workout and the opportunity to really work with your breathing.
ONE TO ONE
There's nothing better than a focused, personalised, one to one session to introduce you to the benefits of yoga. If you're concerned about feeling self conscious in a class, don't have space in your schedule to fit in a group class, or perhaps have an injury that precludes you from joining a group class, get in touch and we can have a chat about it.
Matthew is in demand as a freelance teacher across London and the South East of England, teaching classes regularly in Islington and Brighton amongst other places. If you're looking for a once off or regular tailored class at your studio or gym, or at home for a group of friends, it can easily be arranged!
YOGA AND HEALTH
Yoga is fantastic for developing and strengthening your body, but it's not a medically qualified practice and should not be considered an alternative to a qualified medical professional's diagnosis for any given medical condition. If you have any sports or activity related conditions I am happy to take the guidance of your medical practitioner and incorporate that into a class plan, but you are ultimately responsible for your own body and if something doesn't feel right for any reason during a class you must stop and let me know.
If you have or have recently experienced any of the health conditions listed below, please let me know in advance of attending a class:
High blood pressure
Low blood pressure/fainting
Detached retina/other eye problems
Any other conditions which might affect your mobility or are likely to cause you concern when doing yoga.
Yoga is about deepening our understanding of ourselves, the world around us, and our place in that world. Without the physical shield of clothes it's much easier to connect with that sense of self as we can more easily put aside the mental shield we all have in our daily lives. We're all on the same level, so no judgement can be made about who we are by the outward signs we choose to cover ourselves with. Meditating and practising yoga whilst naked as a member of a group of other naked men is a life-affirming and deeply liberating experience.
There is no Tantra, or sexual or sensual element, in my classes. There is sometimes partner work in naked classes, but it's always 'opt in' rather than 'opt out', so you can freely choose to partake in any parts of the class you feel comfortable with.