Simon Low and Yin Yang Yoga
“Simon has a number of qualities, all of which can be found in many yoga teachers but rarely are they all found in the same yoga teacher. He has a breadth and depth of understanding of yoga asana that few teachers I have met can match, combined with a deceptively easy teaching style that presents the information in a readily absorbable manner so that you almost don't realise you are learning, but you are. While having the greatest respect for yoga traditions, Simon is not hidebound by them, or by a particular yoga school's philosophy. Instead Simon's teaching evolves as he draws on influences not only from other teachers and yoga schools that he frequently seeks out, but also from anatomy teachers, physiology teachers, martial arts teachers and even his students. However these influences are not randomly selected and just thrown into the pot, they are seriously thought about, studied and digested and finally integrated into the teaching style that is uniquely Simon's.& This integration is often so seamless that, unless you are paying particular attention, you may not notice some of the more subtle changes. I continue to go to Simon's classes partially to re-establish my yoga foundation but also in the hope, frequently realised, that he has refined another small piece of yoga gold since I last saw him. For me, one of the largest 'nuggets' of this yoga gold was when Simon introduced Yin and Yang yoga into his teaching. But this is not a nugget that has been left on the shelf and admired, instead it has been refined and polished. Yin and Yang yoga is like yoga in HD. Above all for me, Simon's teaching engages my mind as well as my body and breath and this is as true today as it was in the first class I attended 15 years ago.“
“When you combine all this with the knowledge that Simon actively seeks out the best places to practice yoga, wherever in the world, and has a passion for the care and comfort of his students, whether is be the facilities in the yoga studio, the food, the accommodation or the general environment, I always know that a retreat with Simon will be a high quality experience.”
Steve Whittam – a regular of all Simon Low’s residential weekends, also a past graduate on The Yoga Academy
“He’s the Primrose Hill set’s favourite yoga teacher. So when Simon Low introduces a new way to practise the ancient art, you know it’ll be the next big thing. I’m a yoga rookie, so for most of the two-hour class I’m only able to (rather inaccurately) mimic Low’s elegant postures. But even I can tell that there’s something about the flowing sequence of movements through which he leads us that is slightly different from mainstream yoga. This is ‘Yin and Yang’ yoga – the latest rereading of the ancient Indian system of personal development that aims to balance body, mind and spirit.“
Susie Rushton, Health Correspondent for The Independent
“Mornings are for the more dynamic yang sessions; afternoons are dedicated to yin, a deeply relaxing meditative style. Simon’s got a great way of explaining why a particular position is good for you. I’m amazed by how quickly a three-hour class passes. “
Jane Dunford, Travel Correspondent for The Guardian
"Simon imparts yogic teachings in an inspiring and compassionate manner. Under Simon's skilful guidance, you are safely challenged to find new capacities in yourself on the mat, while the pearls of wisdom from philosophy, poetry and stories Simon shares in each session give you insights to yourself and life so you can take the fruits of the practice beyond the mat to serve you and those around you in your everyday life."
Eija Tervonen, Helsinki, Finland
Residential Weekends in Kent
"I'm being shown to my room in a listed 17th-century mansion house set in the beautiful scenery of 500-acre Commonwork Farm in Kent. The farmhouse mixes the rustic charms of giant fireplaces and Agas with the urban health spa addiction to panniers stuffed with fluffy white towels. In the fridge of the homely kitchen, beer and wine are on offer. We may be here for our wellbeing, but I am happy to see that doesn't rule out a little self-indulgence. Besides, the beer - like the rest of the weekend's victuals - is organic."
Harry de Quetteville of The Telegraph Weekend
"I have been going on Simon's Commonwork farm weekends for ten years. They are always a special treat - I know when I go I will meet interesting people, have great food and excellent yoga teaching. Sometimes I go on my own and sometimes with friends and I have an equally good time because everyone is so friendly. Simon has the ability to teach a class of very mixed abilities, from beginners to experienced and still make the class relevant for everyone. His teaching is always evolving so that every class is different. I always return to my busy job as a nurse in the NHS refreshed after a Commonwork Farm weekend - its equivalent to a week's holiday."
"I've been making a conscious effort to do more exercise and felt a need to expand my repertoire. Although I wasn't sure yoga truly qualified I had read that Simon's classes were very demanding and this combined with the amount of yoga proposed over a weekend encouraged me to try the idea. I also liked the thought of a weekend away in new company. At Commonwork Farm I found the yoga was manageable and Simon made a noticeable effort to keep the classes interesting and inclusive to the less flexible! I enjoyed them. The weekend as a whole was relaxing and the company welcoming and light hearted making the mealtimes enjoyable. There's a distinct absence of the hippy / holistic and a wealth of recognisable common sense and normality. I recommend the food, the massage treatments and frankly the whole thing if you're of a mind to try something different."
Mr Chris Marsden, a newcomer to yoga and to Simon
Simon Low's Holidays
"Simon's yoga holidays offer an intimate avenue to personal growth and exploration of your inner essence. After spending time in an environment of acceptance and encouragement, you come home feeling uplifted and rejuvenated, nurtured inside out, one step further on your personal journey to balance and presence in life. Simon's yoga holidays are a balanced combination of group yoga activities and private time. Connection to nature is an integral element of Simon's teachings and is reflected in his choice of holiday locations and special activities offered. Leaving your hectic city life and indoor studios to practice yoga and enjoy life close to nature is a gift we should give to ourselves more often."
A week of yoga at Huzur Vadisi
"It was my great pleasure (and privilege) to attend my first ever yoga retreat at Huzur Vadisi, so I feel rather that I owe everyone involved in making my week so special a hearty "thank you"! As a newcomer to yoga I was more than a little apprehensive in advance of arriving, so I was incredibly relieved (and very grateful for the expert management of the programme by Simon) that I was able to keep up without, I hope, spoiling the practice of the other, more experienced, attendees. All in all, I found it a revelatory week, which I hope will launch an ongoing personal practice. I will be back!!"
Annie Bowden, Huzur Vadisi, August 2014
"My yoga holiday with Simon Low at the beautiful Huzur Vadisi was one of the most fun and relaxing holidays of my life. When I arrived in Turkey, I was stressed and uptight after months of working without a break, but my week with Simon completely turned it around. Friends commented on what a different person I came back as. Most importantly, I had such a marvellous time at the retreat, met the most wonderful people and laughed harder than I'd laughed for months and months. I will be back!!!"
Olivia Baloghy, March 2014
"This was my third retreat with Simon, and my second time at Huzur Vadisi. I loved it so much in 2011 that this time I persuaded my husband to come too, although he doesn't have a regular yoga practice. He absolutely loved it: the wonderfully invigorating and restorative classes, with details of anatomy and philosophy that many teachers omit; the heavenly site with its spacious, peaceful accommodation and so many places to relax and unwind, the beautiful rock-faced swimming pool, a friendly group of delightful people, and of course the legendary food. I can't wait for next summer!"
Stephanie and Peter Herbert, August 2013
"A truly replenishing and rewarding week at Hazur Vadisi. Love and attention to detail was evident from the first moment and continued to be present throughout our stay. Everyone involved with the retreat giving of themselves in an impressive collaborative effort. The true spirit of yoga was present on and off the mat. Simon led us in our yoga practice seamlessly and with the lightness of touch that only a committed and ongoing student of yoga can, ensuring that newbies and those with more experience had an enjoyable practice packed with learning. I will be recommending this retreat to my students, colleagues, friends, in fact anyone who is prepared to listen!! The week gave me so much on a professional and personal level and at the same time was a perfect holiday."
"Many people here are repeaters, but my niggling fear that yoga trips attract neurotic middle-aged women or diehard hippies soon subsides w hen I meet the other guests. There are two couples, a guy on his own, a mother and son, and a girl who's not done yoga before but fancies a spot of rest and relaxation. Our mornings start with the chime of Tibetan cymbals heralding the first class. The yoga sala is a beautiful wooden structure, covered with vines. It's very atmospheric with dappled sunlight falling on the floor and the call to prayer from mosques in neighbouring villages echoing around the mountains. With all the fresh air, good food and yoga I'm feeling fantastically healthy. Something about the tranquillity of Huzur Vadisi gets under your skin."
Jane Dunford, travel correspondent for The Guardian
A week of yoga at Khoa Sok Lake, Thailand
"The casual, intimate, remote eco retreat Jungle Yoga is like a place out of this world. The vibrancy of nature sounds contrasted with the stillness of the lake, the gentle lulling of the flo ating bamboo huts and the solidity of the high-rising cliffs provide a unique place of placidity, serenity and tranquility that touches you deeply. The experience of being connected to nature, to yourself, to the life force within you and everywhere around you that is the key of yogic teachings is ever present here."
"The ten days were wonderful - relaxing and challenging (particularly for my hamstrings). During that time, I feel we built up a lovely atmosphere in the group. I liked the way everyone committed her-and-himself to the yoga practice. I specially liked the way Simon taught: at the same time very sensitive and tender as well as holding the energy of the whole group with assertiveness."
"I'm going to miss hearing all the rich sounds of the rainforest (though I have the CD of it!); the forest is so alive. I will especially miss hearing the gibbons calling every day. It was a fantastic experience with a great bunch of people. Simon, Dick, Beth and all the Thai staff make you feel so welcome that leaving is a bit like leaving home."
A week of yoga at Lotus Yoga Retreat, Goa, India
"Spending a yoga holiday with Simon at Lotus Yoga leaves you with a heightened state of awareness that is enhanced by the powerful presence of the Arabian Sea, the vast open space of Goan beaches and the stunning sunrises and sunsets you can experience every morning and evening from the oceanfront yoga shala."