That quiet awkwardness at the beginning of something new. People milling in, some familiar, some not. Faces travelled from India, US, Norway, northern UK to be together celebrating the majesty of yoga. Often being a teacher can be a lonely job, travelling from school to school, teaching yoga because on some subtle level we feel the need and the calling to do so.

Coming together in our “sangha” to listen and speak with uplifting, supportive and encouraging speakers puts yoga firmly on the school map.

The INstill conference has become an annual confluence of yogis, academics, medics and MPs.  The one focus that brings them together is their experience of the powerful impact yoga has had in young people’s lives. They are given the terminology, the evidence, the research and the roadmap to the rationale behind this deeply intuitive vocation.

Many men and women came together over two days at SOAS to discuss exactly HOW yoga can fit into schools and which issues people were coming up against in their particular scenario.

The scenarios were many – Haberdasher’s Aske Boys school was represented by a very enthusiastic and effective science teacher, come to find her clan. Also, remote Scottish schools were represented by Becky coming to see how she can introduce more yoga into the schools where she currently works. The yoga school at Hebden Bridge, still in its infancy was an inspiration to all of us with Anil us unveiling the blueprint of how he sees yoga as an integral part of education.

It was particularly exciting to have two members of Parliament present, talking at length of the importance of the embodiment of mindfulness both in parliament and in schools.

In contrast to last year, we had several valuable opportunities to sit down and talk through various topics, to come to consensus and understanding of our situation nationally as yoga practitioners in schools.

I think for many of us, the main take-away from this array of inspiring yogis was a validation of the work we do and a concerted effort to pull together and work as a team to validate yoga further through the research and reviewing of research that is so necessary to have a voice in political and educational circles.

The sense of belonging and connection to this secret majesty of yoga of which we can only understand a fraction is a true blessing.

The slides and audio of the conference are now available for a small donation to the charity. So even if you weren’t there, you could benefit from the event.

With a new government and an Early Days Motion in place at the House of Commons, who knows where this road is going to take us?

For more information about the audio and the slides, please email[:]