The Special Yoga Practitioners & Trainers will guide you through your journey with us should you choose to take a course. Each trainer has extensive knowledge in their fields with unique strengths which have been tailored to align with the courses we offer.
Special Yoga Practitioners
Jyoti Manuel | Lead Special Yoga Practitioner, Trainer and founder of Special Yoga
Founder of the Special Yoga and a leading expert in Yoga for children with special needs. Jyoti Manuel has devoted her life to increasing awareness around the therapeutic effects of Special Yoga while simultaneously making Yoga available to as many children as possible. Jyoti’s continual commitment to sharing the long-term holistic benefits of Special Yoga to the UK and international population is a driving force in the efforts to bring Special Yoga to those who will benefit from the techniques.
Christine Godwin | Special Yoga Senior Practitioner and Trainer
Christine has been a therapeutic yoga practitioner for 17 years and a full-time reflexologist since 1994. She first started training as a yoga therapist to work with her son Jacob who has Down Syndrome. From this early inspiration and practical experience of Jacob, Christine extended her teaching and yoga therapy to include hatha yoga and yoga nidra classes, classes for adults and children with disabilities and/or learning difficulties and one to one yoga therapy sessions. Jacob is now 19 and continues to be an inspiration as he grows older and his needs change. Christine lives and practices in London and enjoys working with people of all abilities and sharing her experience in this field.
Dhara Mel Nortcliffe | Senior Special Yoga Practitioner and Trainer
Senior Practitioner & Business Development – With the deep knowledge and experience of working with the children and outside organisations, Mel is a vital part of growing and expanding our ability to serve more and more children.
Karuna Jackman | Senior Special Yoga Practitioner and Trainer
Kathryn is a senior practitioner at the Special Yoga, an organisation that provides yoga and mindfulness to adults and children with special needs. In addition Kathryn has trained with the British Wheel of yoga, and is a certified Integral Hatha Yoga teacher. She has continued developing with training in yoga for Children with Special needs. She has also studied Hanna Somatic Movement, and Gentle Somatic Yoga to provide 1:1s and classes for those recovering from injury and illness. Kathryn’s classes are rooted in compassion; aimed to develop a loving relationship to where we are right now and a chance to explore one’s full potential. A well-rounded class with some chanting, postures relaxation, breathing and meditation provides the opportunity to connect with our own true nature…bliss!
Rani Arduino | Senior Special Yoga Practitioner and Trainer
Rani is a Senior Practitioner at Special Yoga with an innate ability to create a fun, creative and empowering experience during her yoga sessions with children and teenagers. Rani values the transformational benefits yoga can give the next generation and dedicates her practice to helping children connect with themselves, feel loved and explore their potential. Rani also holds a degree in Psychology from the University of Torino in Italy.
Jo Lockhart | Senior Special Yoga Practitioner and Trainer
Jo is passionate about yoga. She is a Yoga Alliance Professionals Senior Teacher and yoga teacher trainer running a 200 hr Yoga Teacher Training programme, training new teachers every year and running CPD post graduate workshops for yoga teachers. She also specialises in yoga for special needs children, recently running the highly attended Special Yoga for Special Children course in Glasgow in 2017.
Jenny Watson | Special Yoga Practitioner
Jenny is an early years specialist in Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) She has studied Autism and Sensory processing disorder to post-graduate level and has 20 years experience of working with special children. She is both a British Wheel of Yoga Teacher and a senior practitioner working in Brighton and Hove for Special Yoga, having trained with, and been supported by, Jyoti Jo Manuel.
Special Yoga Trainers
Ayala Homossany | Trainer for our ‘Teaching Yoga and Mindfulness to Children’ course
With an unyielding appreciation for the creative elements that yoga entails, Ayala Homossany uses her background in classical ballet and design to bring her own unique teaching into classes. Ayala is the author of the Enchanted Wonders(TM) books and is a qualified British Wheel of Yoga and Yoga Alliance teacher.
Dr Katya Langmuur | Trainer for our ‘Teaching Yoga and Mindfulness to Children’ course
Katyayani, or Dr Katya Langmuur has fifteen years worth of experience in teaching meditation among her many other achievements. Armed with a PhD in twentieth century Hindu Studies, and as a university lecturer in Indian Philosophy and Religious Studies, Dr Katya Langmuur finds innovative and joyful ways of threading authentic traditional philosophies into modern ways of living.
Leading classes and workshops in Meditation, Chakra Meditation, Kirtan and Chanting for Babies and Toddlers over a number of years has heightened Dr Katya Langmuur’s dedication to making mindfulness and meditation accessible and inspiring to young children.
Emma Naisbett | Trainer for our ‘Teaching Yoga and Mindfulness to Children’ course
Having worked as an education professional for over 20 years, Emma has an exceptional understanding of primary teaching across all key stages. Emma’s desire to support her young daughter, who was suffering with severe anxiety, sparked the beginning of a fulfilling journey. Emma teaches mindfulness in educational settings to children, teachers, parents, families and has also been a part of the Oxford University led MYRIAD project, which is investigating the impact mindfulness has on adolescents.
Richard Kravetz | Trainer for our ‘Yoga for Adults with Special Needs’ and ‘Chair Yoga’ courses
Has been teaching Yoga for over 15 years to Adults, Children and Special Needs. He holds a BWY Dip for teaching adults and children and served as County Rep for North London & City 2005-13.
His interest in Special Needs originated when his second child was born with Global Developmental Delay and he currently teaches at Day Centres, Special Schools and residential homes. Richard`s training enables practitioners to deliver yoga therapy to the wider population and help facilitate yoga for Special Needs.
Graham Nolan | Trainer for ‘Deaf Yoga’ and ‘Teaching Yoga to Adults and Children with Multisensory Impairment’ courses
Holds a teaching Diploma with BWY as well as a Diploma in Deaf-blind Studies. He has been working in the field of Multi Sensory Impairment for 20 years and been a yogi for almost as long. He is currently undertaking his Masters in the University off Groningen, in The Netherlands in the subject ‘Communication and Congenital Deaf-blindness’ – his research is based on Mindfulness and tactile communication.
Rev. Padma Devi Sumananda| Certificated Integral yoga course trainer
As an Integral Yoga Minister, Integral Yoga Teacher Trainer and International Yoga Teacher Rev. Padma is devoted to her services in yoga and a student of Sri Swami Satchidananda. Rev. Padma’s teaching focus on connecting with the heart and channeling your spirit to receive the full benefits of Special Yoga as a healing therapy. When Rev. Padma is not teaching she dedicates her time to nurturing a charity she founded in Sri Lanka to support women-led families and their children.