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Welcome

Moving Prayer is the website of Jess Glenny, moving body teacher, facilitator and therapist based in south-east London. I offer astanga vinyasa and yin yoga classes, courses and workshops; Phoenix Rising yoga therapy sessions; individual and group mentoring for yoga teachers; and dance movement individual sessions and workshops.

Moving body practices are ways of putting all of ourselves into motion. Through moving the body and witnessing what emerges, we give space for subconscious material to surface into awareness. This process fosters the growth of an evolving body of wisdom, enabling us to live with increasing fulness and meaning. This is a journey into the unexplored spaces of ourselves, a practical tool for living, a mystical path. Enjoy!

About Jess

For as long as I can remember, moving my body has been an instinctive way for me to know myself and discover what it means to be alive. My formal involvement with movement techniques dates from 1981, when, at the age of 18, I did my first Iyengar yoga class. At about the same time I began to train in ballet and contemporary dance techniques, and did class daily for the next 18 years.

I continued to do the odd yoga class, trying out different styles. Then, in August 2001, I came across astanga vinyasa and fell in love with it. I became a dedicated practitioner, finding in this intensely physical, moving form of yoga a deep sense of immanence in the body. The discipline of daily engagement with my body has always been a backbone for me. What happens on my mat now tends to be a response to the in-the-moment needs of my body and may not resemble asana (yoga postures) according to any regular understanding; however, astanga vinyasa remains a core practice.

I trained to teach astanga vinyasa initially in 2002 with Abby Daniel, and again in 2003 with Tim Miller. Since then I have been fortunate enough to work with many senior astanga teachers – you’ll find their names on the Links page. In 2003, I also qualified as a Phoenix Rising yoga therapist, becoming one of a small number of certified Phoenix Rising practitioners in the UK. I worked with Paul Grilley for the first time in 2006, began teaching yin yoga not long after that, and have since trained as a yin yoga teacher. I am registered as a Yoga Teacher Elder with the Independent Yoga Network.

In the summer of 2001, I gave up performance dance techniques and began to explore experientially oriented dance. Over the years I have experimented with forms including including trance dance, contact improvisation and authentic movement, and my ongoing dance practice has been the Five Rhythms of Gabrielle Roth. My own approach to dance movement has grown out of all these experiences.

I took refuge with the Karma Kagyü lineage of Tibetan Buddhism in 2005 and completed the ngöndro (a traditional series of preparatory practices). I don’t consider myself a Buddhist, but I do find a lot of my own understanding of the world reflected in Buddhist philosophy, and I often work with Buddhist tools.

I teach all sorts of people with all sorts of bodies, but I specialise in working with people with hypermobility. My own relationship with movement practice has been challenged and enriched by Ehlers Danlos / Hypermobility Syndrome. I teach occasional public workshops for hypermobile yogis and (non-hypermobile) yoga teachers, as well as hypermobility units for yoga teacher trainings. I am autistic and welcome otherr neuro-diverse people to my classes – please let me know if you have any special needs around touch, or any sensory issues that it may be possible to address. I work extensively with professional dancers and taught yoga on the professional dance programme at Greenwich Dance for many years and am also on the faculty of Embodied Dancer yoga teacher training. I am a guest teacher on Yoga London’s 500-hour yoga teacher training. I also teach in the queer community.

For me, whatever arises in my body is a gateway into deepening and expansion. When we remove the labels from our physical experience and tune into the body on a subtle level, we become aware that our physical ‘limitations’, our injuries, difficulties and imbalances, are our greatest opportunities for becoming healthy, whole human beings. We expand into this wholeness through the commitment to stay present to to our experience, as much as we can, without manipulating, editing or suppressing it. Each of our experiences comes to us as the seed of a blessing, as an invitation to wake up to unexpected new possibilities for being. Moving body practices offer us a way to receive that blessing

I feel privileged to be able to pass on the little I have learnt of these wonderful transformative practices and hope that you will be as enriched by them as I continue to be.

My writing on yoga and movement practice appears in various places online and in print. You can find it at http://movingprayer.wordpress.com.

Registration and certification

• Yoga Register Teacher (Elder):
Independent Yoga Network
• Certified Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapist: Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy Center
Registered Somatic Movement Educator and Therapist: International Somatic Movement Education and Therapy Association



What people say about practising with Jess

“One of the big things for me is that Jess is so absolutely authentic in her practice and it is an inspiration to know that that integrity underpins all her classes.”—Belinda

“The sense of the presence of spirit makes Jess’s classes very special and different from the normal yoga class. Jess creates a space that feels sacred.”—Tinsel

“Jess is a fantastic teacher ... I am particularly struck by and inspired by her calm, relaxed demeanour. I pretty much relax as soon as she starts speaking at the beginning of the lesson.”—Leah

“Jess is a very gifted teacher and creates a space where one is entirely free from judgement and the soft energy of acceptance is ever present. She encourages deep listening in a very profound way because she is so finely tuned in to the present moment. A class can therefore be full of quiet, gentle surprises and slow awakenings.”—Anne-Marie

 


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In my wanderings I have visited shrines and many other places of pilgrimage, but I have not seen a shrine as blissful as my own body.—Saraha


NEWS

Thursday night improvers astanga vinyasa course booking now
For those with some astanga experience. Sweat, stretch, strengthen, explore your edge. Thursday nights in Greenwich, starting 4 September.

Autumn Mysore on Mondays and Wednesdays booking now
The traditional way astanga is practieed, and considered the most beneficial. Take your practice deeper. Starting 3 September, Greenwich.

Wednesday morning restorative yin course booking now
Lots of blankets and bolsters, deep stretch, deep relaxation. Small group. Starting 3 September, at Blackheath Complementary Centre (Blackheath Standard). Individual classes available.

NEW Tuesday before work astanga at Woolwich Tramshed bookingnow
Six-week led basics course. Stretch, sweat, strengthen, explore your edge. Starting 30 September.

Thursday night beginners astanga vinyasa course booking now
Sweat, stretch, strengthen, explore your edge. Thursday nights in Greenwich, starting 2 October.

Yoga Teacher Mentor Group starting October
A supportive space to reflect on your experience of teaching. Meets Sunday afternoons monthly at Blackheath Standard.

Reductions for dance students and professional dancers
If you’re a full-time dance student or a dancer on a low income, you can do a drop-in class for £5 or a course for £24. More information on the link below.

For details of these and other classes and events, see the full schedule on the Classes and Events page.

SPECIAL OFFER on all one-to-one work during the summer holidays
One-to-one dance movement sessions £25 only, and £10 off all Phoenix Rising, and individual yoga sessions from 28 July through to the end of August.

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