Ray has been teaching power yoga in Cardiff since 2003. Taking inspiration from the numerous workshops and courses he has attended both in the U.K and Europe, Ray has developed a practice that is both accessible for newcomers to yoga but can also offer a challenge to experienced yogis. The style is influenced by Ashtanga, which means the postures are kept simple but the flow of the class can be strong. "I feel very blessed that I'm able to make a living teaching yoga, I'm especially grateful to all the students who make that possible."
Ray's journey into yoga began whilst visiting his brother in California in 1997. Having come from an active background in football and Shotokan karate, he was looking for something less aggressive but still physically demanding.
"My brother had been attending a power yoga class in Santa Monica and was raving about how challenging it was. Thinking the class was only chanting and stretching I assumed it would be an easy hour or so of exercise.
I decided to give it a go mainly to help ease some of the physical problems I was having from my sports background. What a rude awakening it was!" "It was the most physically and mentally demanding excersise I had ever experienced, it opened my eyes to a new way of taking care of myself starting from the inside out. Everything we did made complete sense, so you could say from the first class I was hooked."
"I started to realise that being too aggressive with my exercise regime was actually counter productive. Yoga taught me to work with my body, not against it, making it a more balanced form of exercise. It helped me to be in touch with how I'm feeling instead of pushing my body beyond its limitations."
Ray has attended workshops with some of the world's leading teachers, especially drawing from california based power yoga founder Bryan Kest.
"Teaching yoga has been such an incredibly enjoyable experience for me. Looking back I'm so glad I stayed with every high and low the practice has taken me on. Each experience has taught me so much about yoga, and more importantly it has taught me more about myself.
"The postures I use are fairly simple, I tend to avoid the advanced contortions you might see in some classes, but the flow of the class can be quite challenging. My classes are suitable for beginners and those who regularly practice yoga. You just need to find your place, it's not how much you do, or how deep you go, it's how you do it, smooth, deep breaths, calm and focused mind, creating the right environment for you to find, and to bring out the teacher within you, that's what matters".