Ríonach began practising yoga in Paris in 1997 at L’Ecole Francais du Yoga, where her primary teacher was Philippe de Fallois and the ethos of the school was to explore several different styles of yoga.
On her return to Ireland, Ríonach discovered Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, through her teacher, Marianne Jacuzzi, who is a direct student of the late Sri K Pattabhi Jois. She developed a daily practice under Marianne’s guidance and subsequently trained to teach at Les Aisles du Yoga in Paris and with David Swenson in Edinburgh.
A certified (500hr) Yoga Alliance Teacher, Ríonach has studied with many leading Ashtanga teachers worldwide. She is most influenced by her studies with Guy Donahaye, David Swenson, John Scott and Lino Miele and she regularly travels to continue her yoga studies. Her style of teaching is non-dogmatic and she encourages students to maintain an open mind as they develop their personal practice in a way that works for their unique body and stage of life. As a teacher of Ashtanga, Ríonach hopes to facilitate students to discover the life-long benefits and joy of this powerful and transformative practice.
My first yoga class was in 2005 in my local gym. As an avid gym bunny back then, I wasn’t sure what to expect from yoga. I even thought it might be a bit boring. Slowly and surely, however, I began to understand that yoga does more than just keep you physically fit and strong – it also has an extraordinary effect on the mind.
The lovely calm that I felt after a yoga class and the way my stress levels reduced was simply magical. Not to mention the whole body workout that was very challenging and also (to my surprise) very enjoyable. I tried many different styles of yoga (Hatha, Vinyasa Flow, Ashtanga, Bikram) in various studios in Dublin but hadn’t established a regular practice until in January 2010, when I signed up for an Ashtanga beginners’ course. I was instantly hooked! I just couldn’t wait to get back to the class each week so I also started to practise at home. Soon after, to my great delight, a beautiful yoga studio opened locally, in Greystones, offering led Ashtanga classes as well as a 6 day a week morning Mysore programme.
I have learned a lot from attending in-depth workshops and am forever grateful to have studied with teachers like Luke Jordan, Suzanne Brennan and world class Ashtanga experts, David Swenson, Hamish Hendry, Manju Jois, David Williams, Guy Donahaye, Greg Nardi and Kathy Cooper.
But teaching yoga would probably have remained only a dream if it hadn’t been for the loving support of my own teacher, Rionach O’Flynn, who encouraged me to complete an authentic teacher-training course with renowned Ashtanga teacher, Brian Cooper, who has practised Ashtanga yoga for over 40 years. In 2012 I completed the Union Yoga RYT 200h Teacher Training course with Brian in the South of France. The greatest advice he gave me was to always be myself as a teacher, and to remember that one’s own practice is the greatest teacher.
I am passionate about sharing my knowledge and the happiness that a regular yoga practice has brought me over the years.
I have been practising the Jivamukti yoga method for 12 years. In the early days, I focused only on the physical practice, working alongside my gym sessions to help prevent injuries. Cat alip Douglas was my first yoga teacher and she is still my guru and mentor today. She has passed down these ancient teachings in an honest and beautiful way, embracing all of the yogic principles and practices.
In 2007 I developed a serious illness and this is when my practice deepened to incorporate the mindful and spiritual side, while the physical side had to take a step back. I am 100% convinced that my whole yoga practice was a huge factor in a speedy recovery from my illness.
In 2013, after many yoga retreats, I decided to follow this yoga journey to the next level and complete the Jivamukti 300HR teacher training in Costa Rica. I trained with the founders of Jivamukti, Sharon Gannon and David Life, as well as the inspiring Yogeswari and Jeffery (Rama) Cohen. This was the best experience of my life to date and I am deeply honoured to be able to pass down these ancient and beautiful teachings that have survived unchanged for thousands of years.
In my classes, the breath, mind and body are brought into harmony, while we sweat and we laugh.
The teacher will always be a student, the student will always be a teacher.
Ever since I was little, I always had an interest in “physical” hobbies – volleyball, athletics, dance, tae-kwon-do, swimming etc. So, when I went to my first yoga class 12 years ago – it was purely for a physical challenge…Years later and I am still captured by yoga – it transformed my life! Starting as a physical challenge, yoga slowly became my inspiration, my life philosophy and my sanity in this busy world.
After years of regular practice, I qualified as a yoga teacher in 2011 and since then, I’ve been continuously teaching and studying yoga and body movement. I have been privileged to practise and study under many wonderful teachers from Belarus (where I am from), Ireland and India. I hope to continue their great work by sharing my knowledge and experience with my students.
My medical background has always been helpful, giving me a deeper understanding of body anatomy and movement. I aim to make my classes fun, challenging and informative – flow style with a playful attitude. Every time you roll out your mat, it’s a unique journey. I look forward to sharing that journey with you and welcoming you to my classes at Greystones Yoga Studio.