I began practicing yoga almost ten years ago – purely to get arms like Madonna. Yeah. Not for spiritual enlightenment. Or inner peace. Or even because I wanted to be a better person.  It was because I wanted Madge’s biceps. I heard somewhere that she got them through a thing called ‘Ashtanga Yoga’.

So I went. And I hated it.

I thought I was going to die in my first Downward Dog. My Triangle Pose had the tone and refinement of a bit of Toblerone left out in the sun. And trying to stand on one leg was so frustrating I wanted to punch someone.

But I kept going.

And so yoga and I began this long, sometimes dysfunctional relationship. I won’t lie to you – yoga and I have had our differences. There have been long periods apart because I recognised that it was beginning to bring up some of my shit and I wasn’t ready for that.  Sometimes we’ve spent months together on idyllic tropical islands where we swore we’d never be apart again. There have been other times when it just hurt too much and I did a lot of crying. But, like the Ross and Rachel of the mind/body development world, we always end up back together. (Although as far as I know yoga hasn’t slept with the girl from the photocopying shop.)

Despite our emotional rollercoaster, yoga and I decided to make it official so in 2007 I qualified as a yoga teacher (and if you care about the fancy bits of paper I’ve got, I’m a Yoga Alliance 500 hours Registered Teacher – so there).  I’ve taught all sorts of people, from those who have never set foot on a yoga mat to those who can niftily pop both feet around their head (weirdos). In classes, workshops, 1-2-1 sessions and for a while at an award-winning health resort in St Lucia. (Yeah – that was as bad as it sounds.)

But times have changed. These days I’m angry about yoga for a whole other reason. And it’s not because I hate back bending (even though I still do). It’s because there’s this seriously fucked-up notion spreading through our world that yoga is a thing you can only do if you’re a.) really bendy, b.) really skinny, c.) have an hour every day to spare, d.) are standing in front of an ocean/a cave/a swanky rooftop, e.) drink noting but kale and spirulina smoothies.

No. No. No. NO.

Yoga is for EVERY BODY. All you need is a desire to feel better than you do. You need to be curious about how you can make that happen. And you need to have a sense of humour (after all, it’s only yoga).

So I have one question for you – do you want to feel RLY good?