Meet the SYF Practitioners & Trainers

The Special Yoga Foundation 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.


SYF Practitioners

Jyoti Manuel | Lead SYF Practitioner, Trainer and founder of Special Yoga Foundation

Founder of the Special Yoga Foundation 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 of the foundation.

Christine Godwin | SYF Senior Practitioner and Trainer

Christine has been a practitioner of cognitive behavioural therapy for the NHS, a full-time reflexologist since 1994 and has been teaching yoga and practicing yoga therapy for 15 years. She first started training as a yoga therapist to work with her son Jacob who has Down syndrome. From the 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 17 and continues to be an inspiration as he grows older and his needs change. Christine has two other sons and lives and practices in west London.

Dhara Mel Nortcliffe | Senior SYF 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 SYF Practitioner and Trainer

Kathryn is a senior practitioner at the Special Yoga Foundation, a charity 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!

Jo Lockhart | Senior SYF 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.

SYF Trainers

Veronika Kloucek | Trainer for our ‘Teaching Yoga and Mindfulness to Teens’ course

A leader in the field of teen yoga and mindfulness, Veronika Kloucek is committed to increasing awareness, knowledge and practical experience of the therapeutic effects of yoga and mindfulness for this population. With nearly twenty years worth of experience in practicing yoga and meditation, Veronika will bring her knowledge from teaching teenagers, delivering MBSR (Mindfulness based Stress Reduction) courses and studying a degree in integrative psychotherapy to enlighten her students with benefits of yoga and mindfulness for this age group.

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, as well as training people at Special Yoga Foundation to people working with the Special Needs population.

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.