When I was asked to review Tulayoga, I immediately said yes thinking some massage followed by yoga was just what my tired body and frazzled mind needed. But then I tapped it into Google (big mistake!) and I was confronted with images of slightly intimidating looking acro-yoga poses performed by beautiful people. One week later, aforementioned intimidating Google images still flying through my head, I made my way to the stunning and peaceful Light Centre in Moorgate. The Light Centre is a haven away from the City’s stress and craziness, yet despite the peaceful environs my mind still hadn’t stopped whirring with anxiety. And then I met Louka Leppard.

Louka, the creator of Tulayoga, greeted me with a huge, happy smile full of warmth and kindess. It is hard not to instantly like him and feel at ease in his company. As we chatted, I slowly began to relax. Louka, sensing my nervousness, gently explained to me what the two hour treatment would involve, making an effort to ensure that I was completely comfortable with everything.

The first hour and a half was deep tissue massage, done lying down on cosy blankets on the floor of a candlelit room. With beautiful, relaxing music in the background, Louka used oils to give a deep, tension-releasing massage (apparently I needed it!). As Louka worked on me, he picked up on specific areas of my body that needed some extra attention. He explained to me that tightness in certain areas of the body may be a result of deep emotional issues such as fear, anxiety, guilt and/or responsibility.  Our minds and bodies are inextricably linked and so often we bury away our feelings, only for them to manifest as physical ailments such as muscular tension or digestive problems. By the end of the 90 minute massage, I felt like my body had opened up significantly but more importantly I felt relaxed, completely relaxed.

Following the massage, I donned my yoga gear with complete trust in Louka and the impending aerial-style yoga. As Louka lay down on the floor I closed my eyes and flopped my now floppy body onto his feet as he lifted me into the air. I felt as though I had suddenly become weightless and I was simply floating in mid-air. Slowly, Louka guided me through various postures, all of which were supported by him. The sensation was strange as although fully supported by Louka in each posture, I felt as though I was suspended in the air, weightless and defying gravitational force. At the end of the session, Louka gently lowered me back down to earth, and I “zenned” out on the cosy blankets for a final moment of relaxation.

If you are considering trying a new treatment or want to treat yourself to something special, I seriously recommend Tulayoga with Louka Leppard. Although on the Google-image face of it, Tulayoga appears slightly intimidating, in reality, it is the complete opposite – warm, relaxing, tension-releasing, absolute bliss.

What is Tulayoga?
Founded in Geneva over 16 years ago, Tulayoga is the beautiful creation of Louka Leppard. The one-to-one treatment combines 90 minutes of deep tissue massage with about 30 minutes of supported yoga and mindful movement. It is already enjoyed by world-renowned actresses, fashion-designers and business people and it is set to become the next big thing on the London well-being scene.

What Are The Benefits of Tulayoga?
The aim of Tulayoga is to release tension as well as realign and open up the body. Some of the other benefits include:

  • Increased physical mobility (great for tight, stressed bodies)
  • Increase in breathing capacity
  • Decrease in blood pressure
  • Reduction in stress levels
  • Release of emotional blockages and trauma

Who Would Benefit from Tulayoga?
Tulayoga is for anyone. You definitely don’t have to be an acrobat or a yogi as the movement is adjusted to your body’s limitations and flexibility. It is especially effective if you are looking to de-stress, release some negative emotional energy or open up a tense, tight body. However, there is a weight limit of 80kgs and those with heart problems, high blood pressure, motion sickness or eye diseases should consult a doctor and contact Louka Leppard before taking a session.

Where Can I Experience Tulayoga?
Louka Leppard offers one-to-one sessions in London (Light Centre, Moorgate), Paris, Geneva and Berlin. A one-to-one, 2.5 hour treatment costs £300 (for treatments at your home there is an additional cost). In addition, this summer Louka is leading two fabulous retreats on-board a traditional Turkish sail-boat (think sunrise yoga on the deck and sunset massage overlooking the Aegean Sea). You can book a Tulayoga session or your Aegean sailing retreat by contacting Louka directly via his website www.tulayoga.com.

words by Kathleen Fleming