The Teaching Crew

Julia Gavin

Julia Gavin Liverpool

Founder of The Yoga Academy in Liverpool, Julia has been hosting yoga teacher trainings and courses since she qualified as a yoga instructor in 2013. A former high school teacher, Julia has dedicated a decade to both her practice and the business of yoga. Her experience in the industry is evident in all her trainings.

With strong foundations in the traditional practice of Ashtanga Yoga, Julia has developed a contemporary practice that clearly reflects modern yoga, a fusion of traditional methods with contemporary techniques. She strongly promotes the concept of an intelligent practice along with meditation through music and movement, exploring both the physical and the spiritual both on and off the mat. Julia’s style of teaching yoga encourages mobility, strength and flexibility to achieve challenging postures through dynamic sequencing and anatomical awareness. She continues to advance her own interpretation of Larry Schultz’s Rocket Vinyasa, revelling in the idea that Rocket Vinyasa is an attitude!

Julia gained her Rocket Vinyasa certification with David Kyle AKA Baba Rocket. She has also completed Rocket Vinyasa trainings with Marcus Veda & Hannah Whittingham and Carson Clay Coulhan. She has trained with Patrick Beach and is an avid follower of his Vinyasa Flow practice. She has completed several anatomy trainings with Celest Pereira and revels in her anatomical wizardry. Previously, she trained with Janet Stone, Tiffany Cruickshank and Michael Gannon. She has practiced in Mysore under the tutelage of Ajay Kumar and in Liverpool under the tutelage of Helen Aldred. Her passion for Ashtanga Yoga came from Kranti Agrawal, founder of Kranti Yoga in Goa. All of these teachers have been particularly influential in terms of practice and pedagogy.

In a previous life, Julia was a Mathematics High School Teacher. She has a Post Graduate in Education and also taught English as a Foreign Language in Taiwan for 2 years. In a previous previous life, she gained 10 years of management experience in Fashion Retailer, managing UK high street outlets River Island and Oasis. She is a self-confessed anatomy geek, podcast junky, healthy foodie, sunset seeker and novice surfer.

Julia currently hosts Yoga Teacher Training in Liverpool during the summer months and you can join her at Palm Trees Resort in Goa during the winter months.

Helen Downey

Helen started her yoga training at Kranti Yoga in Goa where she completed her 500hr Yoga Teacher Training in Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga in 2018. She stayed after her training gaining lots of experience from the many wonderful teachers and this is where she met Julia. Helen began teaching retreat guests and built up a busy schedule, immersing herself in every element of yoga and becoming a strong Vinyasa Flow teacher.

When Helen returned to the UK she began to share her practice in and around Liverpool and continued with her Ashtanga self practice, building on her anatomy knowledge and continuing to weave this in to her Vinyasa Flows.

When lockdown hit the UK, Helen was reunited with Julia and joined her on the YTTC’s which began in Liverpool in November 2020. Since then, Helen has trained and worked alongside Julia delivering 8 courses which have gone from strength to strength, helping build a strong and beautiful yoga community in Liverpool and introducing many wonderful new teachers to students around; Liverpool, Leeds, London and as far reaching as Detroit!

Helen has dedicated this year to the YTTC’s as well has teaching in various studios around Liverpool. Her Ashtanga led classes have gone from strength to strength and is also a strong Vinyasa flow teacher guiding students on the courses through dynamic power Vinyasa flows. Through the training and guidance of Julia she was able to lead the August YTTC.

Helen is also working towards her certification in Rocket Vinyasa and will be completing further training in February 2022. Along with Julia she has also completed many anatomy trainings with Celeste Perira and trained alongside the amazing gymnast and ex circus performer Janchivdorj Sainbayar at the London school of hand balance.

In a previous life Helen was an Event Manager for over 10 years; she was based for much of this time in London. This is where she gained her love for travel organising events around Europe and worldwide. The long hours and disjointed work life balance eventually took its toll and she left to travel for a few years. She was able to dedicate much more of her time to what she loved ‘Yoga’ and hasn’t looked back.

She is a lover of travel, hiking, dancing and animals, especially her little dog Ned!

Helen has resettled in Liverpool and is enjoying life in the city. She is staying put while Julia heads back to India for a few months to her retreat space at the stunning Palm Trees Yoga.