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Last Friday, after a long week at work, I resisted the urge to go to the pub and went to try out the new yoga studio in Newington Green. I’d seen FOLD. crop up on various social media platforms over the past couple weeks had heard they had a lovely space with some great teachers. It’s also the first yoga studio in Newington Green which is great news for me, and all North Londoners! When I entered the dim candle-lit room, I was greeted by a subtle floral aroma. It was calming, but not too overpowering. There were big beautiful plants both inside the studio and in the café area surrounding. Immediately I felt relaxed. I went to a Back to Basics class taught by Phelan Glen. It was Vinyasa Flow style, with a focus on holding poses and strengthening in the body. Throughout the class, Phelan reminded us to move within our body's boundaries without judging ourselves or comparing our practice to that of others. She made reference to the standards of living and working in a busy city and the incessant need to achieve everything all at once- and throughout the class she reminded us that 'comparison was the thief of joy' and the more we worry about others, the less we focus on ourselves. I found Phelan to be incredibly encouraging & captivating and she held my attention for the entire class. I really got the sense that everyone else was as drawn in as I was and so the energy in the room was strong and united. While continually focusing on the breath, Phelan encouraged self-confidence and emotional strength and I left the class feeling empowered and revitalised. I chatted with her afterwards and she explained that she had battled with anxiety and eating disorders since her early teens, and yoga was a 'powerful vehicle of recovery' for her. This experience has quite obviously influenced her teaching style yet she remains light-hearted throughout the lesson and enjoys helping people grow and develop their yoga practice and themselves in all areas of life. At the end of the class I was more than happy to slip myself into Savasana, already feeling wonderful and relaxed with the beautiful music in the background when Phelan came behind me and rubbed my neck with her homemade Savasna Oil- which was the amazing smell I first noticed when I walked in. I slipped into deep comfort. It was the perfect end to my week. FOLD. has an expanding repertoire of well respected London teachers and although they've started small, Phelan and her business partner Becky said they are hoping to double the timetable by January 2017. FOLD is currently doing an introductory deal of £20 for two weeks unlimited yoga - www.fold-london.co.uk