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Having qualified as a Sivananda Hatha yoga instructor in 2001, at the Sivananda ashram in Trivandrum, Southern India, Gemma has been teaching yoga for 13 years and practising for many more before this.
Following her first pregnancy, she extended her field of knowledge to that of pregnancy and prenatal yoga, training under Francois Barbira Freedman at the highly respected Birthlight Trust. Over the past eight years she has passed on her knowledge to hundreds of mums to be, throughout London, the home-counties, and now here in North Devon. Gemma believes that yoga can benefit everyone during their pregnancy regardless of their birthing choice and is keen to involve birth partners with special birth preparation days.
‘I believe that yoga should be available to all, no matter what age, background, status or level of fitness. We can all gain so much on a physical, emotional and ultimately spiritual level. When I started yoga over 20 years ago I was very inflexible and due to my dyspraxia had terrible balance, concentration and co-ordination. Yet through my practice I have gained so much, I believe this is possible for everyone and I try to introduce this idea into my classes, through an awareness of the body and mind in the poses, and the use of the breath to tie them together.’
Gemma is also a trainee yoga therapist and enjoys using yoga to work with people suffering from mental and physical obstacles.
Gemma has two daughters aged 7 and 11 with Dan; and balances home schooling with teaching yoga and tending to their wild vegetable garden.