Colleen Mawhinney

Cape Town
South Africa

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My first introduction to yoga was at Sam Busa's gym in Hillbrow in 1969. I had various teachers around South Africa as I lived in Jhb, Durban, Amanzimtoti, Cape Town, and Somerset West.
In Johannesburg I was introduced to the Young Yoga Institute by my teacher, Gail Matthysen and I trained as an instructor with Doreen Smit. The YYI was founded in the 1960s by Winnie Young who had trained with BKS Iyengar.

I taught yoga at the Southern Suburbs Community Centre, Winchester Hills Gym, and Meyersdal Virgin Active Gym. I also taught yoga to school learners at St Martin's School, where I was an English teacher. I was the Vice Principal of the YYI for six years.

The YYI holds weekend retreats at La Verna Catholic Retreat Centre, on the Vaal River, three times a year and I attended many of these and also helped to arrange visiting teachers and manage these weekends during my time as Vice Principal.

I have attended weekend workshops with Faeq Biria, David Jacobs, Jonathan Blumberg.

I attended monthly workshops with local teachers at Barbara Vorlaufer's studio in Kibler Park and also frequently attended workshops at Jeanette Mayhew's studio in Lindhurst. Twice a year the YYI hold yoga days in Johannesburg, in the north, and in the south and I seldom missed these.

I moved to Cape Town in 2012 and was introduced to Nina Saacks and have attended several workshops at Nina's studio.

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