Long before I became a yoga teacher, I was a student.
My yoga journey began 15 years ago when I was in my mid 30s.
I was a high flying, globe trotting investment banker, working hard and playing harder. Years and years of burning the candle at both ends left me physically and mentally at breaking point. In the throes of agonising back pain and insomnia, a friend recommended that I try yoga. My gym offered classes and I was hooked immediately. Physically I improved quickly: my back pain disappeared, I was sleeping better and handling challenging situations with more ease.
Soon I was seeking out yoga studios wherever I travelled. For the first time in a long, long time it felt OK to just be me; in fact, more than OK. I had a whole new lease of life – more energy and purpose. Those were the seeds that were planted for the changes that would come later, 10 years ago now.
The process of realising I had to let go of a successful City career was a painful one.
What was I going to do? What would my life look like? What would people say? It felt like an existential crisis without end. For what seemed like a long time, the only place that I felt whole was in the studio and on my mat. They gave me the space, the courage and the freedom to dream and put into action a new life.
Becoming a teacher was the natural progression of being a student and of becoming more awake and aware. My teacher trainings were at once fun, silly, challenging, soul searching and revelatory. I recommend to everyone who is passionate about yoga to do a 200 hour teacher training even if you have no intention to teach. You will learn so much about yourself and it will change your life forever.
“We are not just a drop in the ocean. We are the entire ocean in a single drop”
My spiritual path led me to tantra – specifically to non-dualism, the concept that there is one universal consciousness from which everything manifests and of which everything is a part of. Rumi’s quote. We are not just a drop in the ocean. We are the entire ocean in a single drop” encapsulates non-dualism more clearly and poetically than anything I’ve come across.
The real revelation came when I began to understand that rather than transcending the human experience to achieve enlightenment, it is through the human experience that we achieve it.
Everything that I was looking for was already embedded in me. I just needed to uncover it.
I practise and I teach yoga because it allows me to experience life as the drop as well the ocean. Every breath, pose, meditation and mantra is in service of dispelling separateness and experiencing oneness. Once you begin to feel that you can never unfeel it. My mission as a teacher is for everyone to experience this for themselves.
Based in our Soho and Camden centres, Alex teaches a strong, flowing yet forgiving practice of Vinyasa, grounded in earth energy but with the passion of fire and the lightness of air. Don’t miss his new class at 11:00 on Saturdays in our Camden centre. See his full schedule at triyoga here.