Many would say that I have had a very blessed life. I have travelled the world as a commercial pilot and visited many amazing places (both the well known destinations and the very remote, little heard of places). I have also worked for a number of years as a frontline Paramedic and have had the honour of witnessing firsthand the beginning and the end of life, as well as many raw and beautiful moments between.
So I have been an “observer“. I have seen the world from thousands of feet above detached and impartial, seeing the bigger picture. And I have seen life right up close and intimately personal. Through these perspectives I saw the ever widening gap in our modern lives. The ever increasing stress and growing unhappiness. A lack of connection to the really important things in life.
These aren’t revelations, most of us know it, but many aren’t aware of just how big an impact on our physical, mental and spiritual lives this actually has.
As a young adult and an enthusiastic rock climber I discovered ThaiChi and it’s meditative connection to a universal energy, it’s body awareness, balance and grace. Roll forward many years and many life changing moments to the present me. I left the corporate, commercial, materialized world, downsized my life and was fortunate enough to be able to take early “semi” retirement. This has enabled me to follow a new path of Yoga, Reiki and ZenThai Shiatsu and to take these forms of “connecting“ and share them with those who might be interested in listening and hopefully a few who might be inspired to “reconnect“ in their own lives.
The first principle in my teaching and therapeutic sessions is to inspire a reconnection to the Universal Energy that is all around us and I do this through :-
Vinyasa flow yoga asana, pranayama and meditation.
ZenThai Shatsu partner yoga, body work and QiGong.
Usui Reiki therapy sessions and the inclusion of the idea of being energetically connected to every part of our lives and our universe.
So behind the teacher who is the off duty Nigel?
Obsessions - I know I’m not really supposed to have “attachments“ but I am only human after all. I am a self confessed road cycling obsessive . So given half a chance and a little decent weather and I can be found happily out on my bike weiving around the country lanes of the South West of England.
Inspiational Books -
The Little Prince - Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Illusions (The adventures of a reluctant messiah) - Richard Bach
Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance - Robert M. Pirsig
Any and all of The Adventures of TinTin - Hergé
Favourite Films -
Always - Richard Dreyfuss
Out of Africa - Meryl Streep
The English Patient - Ralph Fienne
The Matrix - Keanu Reeves
The Big Blue - Jean-Marc Barr
Favorite Meal ( in case anyone is cooking )
Thai Green Curry
I met Gwyn whilst I was on my Liquid Flow yoga teacher training and within the first few moments watching him demonstrate a Zenthai body work sequence I knew he was not only a powerfully gifted healer but also a deeply authentic and caring soul and someone I instantly felt drawn to. So it was inevitable that within the year I would follow him to Bali (one of his main teaching centres) to start my training with him.
Gwyn developed ZenThai Shiatsu (www.zenthaishiatsu.com) by the integration of a number of Eastern and Middle Eastern healing traditions, namely Zen Shiatsu, Traditional Thai Massage, Yoga and QiGong as well as using modern osteopathy techniques and knowledge to give everything a solid foundation. The aim of this healing art is simply to ’bring freedom back to the structural and energetic bodies’.
Against the modern trends of patents and trademarks and rather than keep this art suppressed like some sort of ancient secret Gwyn’s vision is that it should spread, passed on from one practitioner and teacher to the next. So within these classes and sessions you will be encouraged to relearn the power of touch in a mindful and authentic way, hopefully inspiring you to reconnect fully in the “present“ with yourself, those around you and to the beautiful world we live in.
I have YouTube to thank as my early Yoga Teacher. I was working in Malawi and flying around the Southern African continent so finding a regular class was out of the question. However once a year I would head off to Wichita in Kansas USA to do a couple of weeks of recurrent flight training and that’s where I went to my first formalised yoga class at Satya Moon Yoga with Katerina Gavin and her amazing team (www.satyamoonyoga.com). I guess that was the first in a series of signs from the universe that my life was about to change.
Then by another amazing universal coincidence was introduced to Simon Park (www.liquidflowyoga.com) ”The Flying Nomad” who just happened to be ruining his first teacher training course later that year.
I was completely mesmerised by Simon‘s style. It was slow and flowing almost organic, but at the same time it was controlled and precise. I was hooked but as with most things if it looks easy it probably isn’t and it will take a lot of work before you can even come close to replicating it. Simon‘s strong sense of tradition as well as his dedication to his teachers allows him to build up from the traditional foundations and find the freedom in the form and to truly feel the constant transition not only between the poses but also within the poses. His whole practice is one long transition of movement, of breath and of Prana.
Teacher Training was more than just character building for me, it was life changing in all the very best ways and I continue to have the greatest respect for my teachers and their lineages. As in Zen “the best student is the new student, the one who retains their open beginners mind” so I look at each moment as if it is my first and hopefully the fruits of wisdom and knowledge will fall at my feet so that I can share them with you.
And in honour of Simon I try to do that with a smile 😊
Reiki is the healing of the energic system of the body. It works with the core of the holistic body and so effects every other system and part of the body. It was developed by Usui Sensei and passed on from one teacher to the next. On his memorial in Japan is the following inscription:
”That which one attains within, as a result of disciplined study and training, is called Virtue, and that which can be offered to others by teaching and methods of salvation is called Distinguished Service. Only a person of high merit and great virtue can be called a great founding teacher. Sages, philosophers and brilliant men of old, the founders of new teachings and new religions were all like that. Usui Sensei can be counted among them. Usui Sensei developed the method that would improve mind and body by using the Universal Power (Reiki). Having heard of his reputation, countless people from all over the world gathered and asked him to teach them the great way of the Spiritual Method and to heal them.”
I feel honoured and humbled to have this gift and to have worked with my master to attune this gift futher. I am 7th in lineage from Dr Ushi and my Reiki Master is Ann Walker (www.healingenergies.net). The greatest pleasure for me is to share this gift with all that seek it.