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Name of company
What type of activity is it?
Classes taught by Lucy Cannon, based primarily on Hatha, a gentle form of yoga designed to improve the body's overall flexibility and vitality, as well as your breathing techniques. It is aimed at a variety of levels of experience, from beginners upwards.
Why do you like it?
It’s not over-strenuous, so is ideal not only for those who are new to yoga, but for the less flexible, or not exactly in the first flush of youth. It’s not ‘yoga for greys’ by any means however, and the age range of the average class is probably 35-60.
Where do you participate in this activity?
Quinta da Calma, the holistic centre and retreat in Almancil.
Lucy’s classes are on Tuesday evenings at 6.30 pm and Wednesday mornings at 10 am, and last for about 1.5 hours.
Lucy also offers individual, one-to-one tuition, at your home or at hers.
One of Quinta da Calma’s numerous purpose-built studios. Lucy supplies yoga mats if you don’t have your own, and brings in some spiritual music and incense to set the mood. It’s as simple as that. Wear something comfortable and loose-fitting. You can also bring your own water, or there’s a water-cooler.
After the opening ‘om’ mantras, you begin gradually with a few warming-up exercises, steadily increasing the pace as you concentrate on posture, relaxation, breathing, the cleansing process, and mental concentration. Lucy is a very patient and gentle teacher: she makes everybody feel relaxed, and progresses at a rate you can all feel happy with.
There’s a good balance between the physical and spiritual, and for want of a better term, this is ‘middle of the road’ yoga. It’s not too physically taxing, in that you don’t come away exhausted or aching. And whilst you’ll feel relaxed and more at peace with the world, it’s not over-the-top, happy-clappy yoga either if that sort of thing has put you off in the past.
The classes are for everyone, regardless of ability, experience, age, weight, fitness or sex, although there is almost inevitably a preponderance of women.
The classes are a good way of getting into yoga if you’ve never tried it before, and the perfect motivation for regular yoga practitioners who like the camaraderie of numbers.
Size of place or limit of numbers
Lucy’s classes tend to be for between 6 and 12 people, depending on the time of year.
If you want to stay on for lunch after the Wednesday morning session, Quinta da Calma operates a Wednesday-only vegetarian restaurant, alongside a small organic market.
About Lucy Cannon
Born in the UK and raised in Portugal, Lucy worked as a PA at Gucci in London before returning to the Algarve in 1999 to follow her love of yoga. She is a Certified Integral Yoga teacher and has studied extensively with internationally-renowned disciples of the yoga guru Sri Swami Satchidananda, including Nalanie Chellaram, Sonia Sumar and Nischala Joy Devi.
Lucy (also known by her yoga name of Luckshmi) teaches adults, children, children with special needs, and people with life-threatening illnesses. She also travels internationally, teaching and assisting on yoga training programmes, learning about different cultures, and helping in voluntary projects with children and women, including the Service in Satchidananda collection of charities and CASA, the charity for the underprivileged in Portugal.
About Quinta da Calma
Quinta da Calma is a centre and retreat for yoga, tai chi, meditation, natural and integrative treatments and therapies, and courses and workshops on themes related to personal and spiritual growth.
Set in 10 hectares of pine trees with its own organic garden and a spacious swimming pool, it also offers residential accommodation in rustic-style wooden huts, a variety of spaces and studios for its programme of classes, workshops and retreats, and an on-site vegetarian eatery.
On the EN-125 south of Almancil, almost opposite S. Lourenço Church. There are directions on the website at www.quinta-da-calma.com but it’s easy to miss as there is currently no signage. No wonder it’s one of the best-kept secrets in the Algarve!
Lucy’s yoga classes cost €10 for one session, or €70 if you book a session of ten.
Private tuition: prices on request.