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I’m sure when you hear the words yoga teacher you think of some bendy person made of plasticine who can get their legs behind her head while looking super hot in hemp clothing.

Well that’s not me!
I’m more the Bridget Jones of yoga teachers. In other words, I’m human. A mere mortal. Perfectly imperfect. I  can’t do, nor will I ever be able to do a lotus position thanks to a dislocated hip as a baby.
I have one leg longer than other thanks to said hip injury. I walk with a limp in bare feet. My left shoulder nags me because structurally I am off balance. I have a plate and screws in my right leg and had my varicose veins removed at a young age thanks to my amazing genetics! To top it all off,  I can’t tie myself up in yoga knots!

Sinead kennedy Yoga Pilates Yoga for cyclists Yoga Travels – Portugal

You’re probably wondering how on earth do I manage let alone teach yoga! Well the truth is, Yoga is the best painkiller I ever took.

When I was a teenager I suffered terribly with growing pains. My hip was in bits, I was struggling with puberty and I just couldn’t get any pain relief. Throw in stilettos which were all the rage in the late 1980’s, disco dancing, carrying a heavy school bag, sitting at a desk all day, trying to do PE and play hockey my body was in a jock! A “specialist” kindly told my mother not to let me do any exercise, I was “to become a secretary and do nothing.”

Thankfully I was never really one to do as I was told.
​I did the complete opposite and kept moving!

That’s the thing, our bodies know instinctively what they want to do. We are drawn to our sport/  hobbie. Some like golf, some like skiing. It doesn’t matter what it is as long as you enjoy it and you’re moving. All I ever wanted to do was move.
Like the saying goes, when the student is ready the teacher will appear. Along came yoga for me. Like everyone at first I didn’t really get it. I found it all a bit “OUT THERE!” I prefered throwing weights around the gym, going mad on a spin bike and step aerobics! Jane Fonda was my hero. I thought it was all a bit faffy and a waste of time to be honest. I had signed up for 8 weeks so I kept going.

Sinead Kennedy YogaYoga travels -Bolivia

So what changed my mind about Yoga? I noticed that my hip was happier. It didn’t sing with pain in the usual way. I also felt stronger in a strange way. Not like my weight training strength, more of an inner body strength and immune system boost. I slept like a log on my yoga days. My body shape started to change dramatically, I looked less bulky, more long and lean. I was becoming more flexible though not tie me up in knots bendy. I think the biggest change I noticed was that my body was moving better over all and I wasn’t getting injuries. Aches and pains decreased and I definitely noticed that over all my whole body was happier.

As you can imagine, anyone living with chronic pain can be cranky. It’s no joke being in pain, its exhausting. When my pain levels decreased I felt better mentally too.

So I decided to become a Yoga teacher and spread it’s pain killing effects! A natural remedy for pain management that makes you look good!  I spent a month in India in an ashram which I thought was a crazy place inline with a cult! However, by the end of it I was in full swing, banging pots,  shaking beads and Om-ing with the best of them!

So for me Yoga has brought:

  • Pain relief (which  brings happiness)
  • Flexibility of a human level. (who needs to stick their legs behind head anyway!)
  • Strength (yoga is not for wimps!)
  • Abdominal breathing (the more oxygen in our bodies the better we feel and heal)
  • Injury prevention (no more niggles)
  • Boosted my immune system (great for cold winters)
  • Balance (how long can you stand on one foot?)
  • Better sleep (no wonder I am so gorgeous with all my beauty sleep!!)
  • Union of body and mind  (I know when to use my breath to calm a busy mind)
  • Mobile spine (you are only as young as you spine is mobile)
  • Freedom! (I can do Yoga anywhere with no equipment.)
  • I feel fantastic after each class and my body looks all the better for it too!
No matter how long live I will continue to do Yoga. Why take painkillers when I can move my body instead!?
Do  you find your only doing one sport or only moving in a few directions? Join me for a movement workshop  March 15th 2018.  Lots of Yoga and Pilates moves as well as some challenging resistance band work.
Our focus will be:
*Core strength
*Functional movement
*Resistance training
*Post training recovery
You even get your own resistance band to take home – to be used and not put in a drawer!

PictureYoga travels – On the equator, Ecuador


About the Author:
Sinéad Kennedy is a Physical Therapist, Yoga Siromani and Pilates Instructor, based in Rathfarnham, South County Dublin. She treats and teaches people from all walks of life, including many athletes, especially cyclists, runners & golfers. Featured in the Irish Independent, FIT Magazine, her Yoga 4 Cyclists class has gained notoriety.
A keen cyclist and proud member of Orwell Wheelers she has completed numerous cycling events including La Marmotte Sportive. She is currently training for Mont Ventoux Cingles, June 2018.  Sinéad has also completed 3 Dublin City Marathons, numerous Adventure Races and Half Marathons.

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