Don’t fear the Downward Dog

Yoga offers liberation not fear, explains Fiona Condie

The world of Yoga can be an intimidating one.

The thought of soccer mums arriving at the studio clad in yoga pants clutching their personal yoga mat while discussions of chakra alignment are abuzz may daunt any newcomer.

With the notion that yoga is more of a fashion style than a lifestyle choice now commonplace, it is important to understand that this is misleading and contradictory to its true value.

“It’s ironic that such an understanding has come to be, as a yogic lifestyle discourages consumerism and celebrates inclusiveness,” explains Fiona Condie. “I strongly dislike any idea that yoga should be exclusive and would never turn anyone away regardless of their means.”

Fiona, who has been teaching yoga for over 20 years, learnt her practice in India before the study of yoga lead her to the flowing movement practice most akin to a Vinyasa flow.

As such, in a society where ego rules, Fiona feels a yoga class is the best way to let go of self-consciousness and arrogance.

“With its primary purpose of integrating the mind, body and spirit, a yoga practice is so much more than an exercise method. Taking our attention inwards strips us back to just the body, to our primal self. From this connection a yoga session becomes a deep, active meditation and can offer some surprising revelations,” she says.

“It is important to remember that our time on the mat is a ‘practice’ and to let go of any idea of seeking perfection. Perfection in this sense simply doesn’t exist and being free from such unobtainable goals allows for the liberation that yoga offers.”


Who is Fiona Condie?
I am a yoga teacher and therapist based in Brighton & Hove and Lewes. In 1992, a hunger for adventure saw me buy a one-way ticket to India where I was fortunate to study with BKS Iyengar.

It was five years before I returned to the UK and it was important to me to deepen my knowledge beyond the standard yoga teacher training, so I completed a four-year professional therapist course; including full human anatomy.

What do you teach and what sets you apart from the competition?
Each class follows a unique flow, where rather than following a lesson plan or a ridged set, the practice evolves in an appropriate manner for those who have come to share.

How important is yoga to a content wellbeing?
If yoga is practiced correctly, it has a powerful affect on our wellbeing. Experiencing a connection within ourselves, brings back a respect for the body and respect for the self. It is essentially a practice of refining ourselves holistically, a practice of disciplining the mind, body and spirit to optimum capacity.

How can people attend your classes?
My regular mixed ability classes are held six days a week in the beautifully renovated studio space that is part of the King Alfred complex. All classes work on a drop in basis, with a first class available for free to any new student.

A full timetable and further information is available on my website or call me on 01273 474419.

About Daniel White
Dan has written numerous articles for Title Sussex. He no longer works for Title Media and has made a confident career in the world of coffee!

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