Lydia Richards

Student level

I started practicing yoga well over a decade ago to help manage my stress levels associated with my senior roles in corporate affairs and public relations. Having experienced the incredible benefits of these practices first-hand, sharing them seemed like to me an absolutely necessary thing to do.

I bring the deepest energy of my heart to my teaching. For me, Yoga is about connection...connection with Self, with Community and Earth. And I see it as my responsibility to help raise the consciousness of human beings (animals, it appears, already have it sorted) by guiding students to that place within where the mind is a little quieter and the heart is a little louder.

My flow classes are slow to medium but strong. They are underpinned with Yoga philosophy and often include references to funny stories or musings relevant to my own life. Pranayama and meditation are a non-negotiable in my classes and my Flow and Yin classes will often incorporate embodiment practices inspired by my studies of Restorative Yoga.

Wherever possible I also like to incorporate mantra, chanting and sound healing practices into my teaching. I strive to create a safe, supportive and nurturing environment for my students and aim to ensure they are given every opportunity to drop-in to these powerful, life-changing practices.

Teaching & Certification

  • I completed my 200 Hour TT with Judit Varga (Hungary) at the Power of Now Oasis, Sanur
  • Mentoring with Amy Leonard-King (Yoga Corner)
  • Restorative + Nidra teacher trainings with Gena Kenny (Ohana Yoga) - Yin Yoga Training with Jennifer Crescenzo (Luminous Yoga)
  • Laughter Yoga Facilitator Certification (Laughter Yoga Australia)

Teaching Style

  • Adjustments/Assists: In Flow...sure, sometimes. But mostly only when I can see breath is stagnant in a particular part of the body - less for the sake of what I think a pose should look like. Also, in my Yin, Restorative and Meditation classes I will often incorporate essential oils teamed to the theme or focus.

  • Theming: Definitely. Theming will often relate to either new things I've learnt or discovered or something that I feel relevant to my own life or practice. If I am feeling like I need more of "something" in my life, then chances are someone else does too. We're all in this together, right?

  • Sequencing: Target area/s in the body or a repetitive type/style of movement that can be experienced in a number of postures. I also love working with the energy body.

  • Music: Krishna Das, Deuter, Jane Winter, Moby, Dean Evenson, Edo + Jo, Jai-Jagdeesh, Bhagavan Das to name a few. You will find non-offensive and usually emotive songs on my playlists. I see music as being another way that students can connect with the practices so its definitely more than an afterthought but it's certainly not everything.

On & Off the Mat With: Lydia Richards

As a yoga teacher, what inspires and motivates your teaching?

My own journey through this Earthly plane.

How has your own yoga practice evolved since becoming a teacher?

Since becoming a teacher I've learned the importance of filling my cup back up before I give to others. For this reason, I have found I am meditating more than I ever have before and also infusing more restorative practices. I've also recently discovered that a good old fashioned chinwag with a dear Yoga teacher friend is as satisfying as a 20 minute practice on the mat. #satsang

Do you have any yoga teachers that you admire and/or look up to? Who are they?

Amy Leonard-King, Judit Varga, Gena Kenny, Jen Cresenzo, Cecily Chun

For those of us that haven't practiced with you before, what can we expect from your classes?

Me in my rawest form. Expect tenderness, compassion and energy that is drawn from the deepest part of me. Expect to be guided but also to be given opportunities to tap into your own intuition and become more attuned to the language of your body. Sometimes bad jokes and at times bizarre mental tangents that only I get (haha), sometimes silly mistakes in sequences or sides... but whatever happens know that I am always in the room.

Expect to feel supported, nurtured and safe and at the end of the class, just a little more connected than you did when you walked in the room. This is enough if you let it be.

Wherever possible I also like to incorporate mantra, chanting and sound healing practices into my teaching.

What type of class could you teach all day, everyday and why?

Restorative Yoga. An incredible practice to get past the mind and into the body. A deep restful practice we are all worthy of.

Do you practice any other form of movement or fitness besides yoga? If so, what kind?

Gym and Clinical Pilates.

What's your go-to spot in Melbourne to get inspired?

The beach.

Which 3 icons or figures would you want to sit next to at a dinner party and why?

Krishna Das, Michael Singer and my husband, Daz. Because I really want him to meet them!

Finish this sentence. "I feel the most like myself when..."

I am alive with laughter.

And lastly because it's fun, what's your spirit animal?

The Lion. Because I need to believe I am powerful.

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