How I came to Yoga and where I am today.

Updated: Jun 29, 2021

From sports fanatic to Yoga teacher & holistic health educator.

Yoga is so much more than just a physical exercise.

I found Yoga a few years back after a snowboarding injury when working as an instructor, planning my next snow and kitesurfing seasons. I snapped my ACL (anterior cruciate ligament in your knee) resulting in surgery for a replacement and two metal screws at 19 years old. I have always been passionate about sports and movement and this injury made me realise that if we always want to “go hard” on our bodies and expect them to last we also need to look after them. It’s like maintaining your car – the better you look after it, the more years with comfort and no trouble you get out of it.

Not quite Europe or Canada but still snow - the snowy mountains in NSW, Australia.

Limping around on crutches a few days after surgery and running into an old time skater/snowboarder in his 50's who busted his knee years ago and showed me his range of motion of about 30% after not having done any rehab at all and having spent the last 15 years with a broken body drinking and smoking in frustration instead of boarding was a shock that had a massive impact on me: I was so determined to never fail my body like this and to get my knee back to 100% functioning. And so I did.

I was lucky – due to the town I was living in at the time making it’s living off the winter sports industry with pros and athletes coming to stay and train on the slopes, we had high end medical staff around, which not only led to me getting under the knife of one of the top specialised surgeons in Sydney looking after athletes but also to be looked after by some of the best physios and finding “Yoga for Rehab and Injury” along the way. And that’s where the journey began.

Always having been fascinated by medicine and human anatomy – in my “first life” I planned on becoming a Western medical doctor in Germany and did several internships in hospitals in their theatres, emergency stations and pathologies – I was so impressed by the manual therapies available and inspired by feeling and witnessing my body transform simply through treating and moving it mindfully according to its needs.

Before my injury I had planned to take off to a kitesurfing season and also start my studies a s a kitesurf instructor after that winter, to return back to the snowboarding season the following year and so on, switching between surfing the snow and the water. Once diagnosed they told me that I would not be able to do any board sports or generally be back to normal movement and ability for at least another 9 months. The pitta attitude in me welcomed this as a challenge and that was the start of my obsession for Yoga asana as manual therapy …only one to two months later I found myself back on my kiteboard again, riding in the bays of the south coast.

Kitesurfing in Crescent Heads

kitesurfing in Crescent Heads, NSW

As a disclaimer, this is my personal story and was a result of my own efforts and determination. I don’t suggest by any means that this is the average rehab time nor would I recommend anyone taking unnecessary risks when recovering their bodies from injury.

“Given half a chance your body will heal itself”. Old and sick are not the same, nor have to go hand in hand at all, that life and health is what you make it and it starts with care and maintenance before it is too late. – PREVENTION.

Witnessing my body bounce back, my muscles re-develop, strengthen and condition and regaining mobility and flexibility in no time with the right support given got me obsessed with yoga and mindful movement not only as a therapy but as prevention and maintenance.

Always having known “I am not going to be old and sick”, this was my evidence of that old and sick are not the same, nor have to go hand in hand at all, that life and health is what you make it and it starts with care and maintenance before it is too late. – PREVENTION.

None of our ailments happens overnight. They are a result of counterproductive habits creating weakness somewhere in our systems over time and we start to wear out, an ailment is forming long before we experience the physical symptom of it.

Throughout my rehab journey I got to experience the deeper benefits of Yoga, it’s impact on my mental and emotional health next to its physical benefits and Yoga quickly became a part of my daily life. I started reading and studying, immersing myself in personal development and not even a year later I found myself in India for my first Yoga teacher training of many studies to come.

We spent the first day analysing each individuals’ walk and posture. As I was walking down the line for the group to observe my postural habits, our asana and physiology teacher Sindusha stopped me, pointing at my knees and in her strong Indian tone said: “No wonder you’ve done your ACL, look how you are hyper-extending your knees and how flat your feet are! You’ve been putting strain onto your knees all your life, they were gonna give in sooner or later!” Boom. Another eye-opening moment. None of our ailments happens overnight. They are a result of counterproductive habits creating weakness somewhere in our systems over time and we start to wear out, an ailment is forming long before we experience the physical symptom of it.

copra pose bhujangasana Satya Holistic living lena kermode

This was my breaking point: I spent my first life-changing couple of months in India immersing in Vedic science, Indian culture and the ancient wisdom of Yoga day in, day out, living it. This was also my first contact with Ayurveda which soon after became another huge part of my daily life. I have always been passionate about philosophy as well as the sciences and the human body and my time in India was what has helped me to immerse to become my highest self and become the person I am today. You can learn more about my story from rock bottom to light here. Not only have I gotten in touch and deepened my connection with and understanding of my physical body but also it’s interconnection with out mental and emotional body, having shed and worked through a lot of trauma, limiting belief systems that created stuck emotions and behavioural patterns and FELT what it’s like to holistically grow and become the better version of yourself.

From this point onwards I have immersed myself deeper and deeper in the fields of alternative healing and natural therapies, following my soul purpose of bridging the gap between ancient wisdom and modern life and needs, assisting people finding the missing piece in their puzzle to ultimate wellbeing and to becoming their highest evolvements. Yoga is a massive part of the work I do today as a holistic health coach & Ayurvedic counsellor working in personalised 1:1 programs with folks ready to reclaim their health and empowerment.

While my yoga journey started off rather traditional, I today follow my own unique approach in order to make the benefits of yoga accessible to people of Western societies and modern lifestyle inflictions, like you and me. While my approach can be intuitive when facilitating group events aiming for people to connect to their State of Flow, I still follow a therapeutic and clinical approach.

My passion is to use Yoga for holistic healing and while focusing on its physiological benefits, yoga goes way beyond.

My 1:1 sessions are tailored to the individuals needs focussed on their personal health goals. Whether assisting in rehabilitation and optimization of the physical body functions through asana or therapeutically (re-)balancing the emotional and mental bodies, I can assist you on your wellness journey and provide you with the instructions and tools you need to become your own healer with Yoga as part of your equipment.

Common ailments yoga can assist with are:

- Injury rehabilitation

- Lower back pain, hip and hamstring tightness

- Sciatica and nerve pain

- Spinal mobility and spinal health

- Improving strength, mobility, flexibility and functioning

- Lymphatic stagnation

- Hormonal balance (e.g. cortisol balance)

- Hypo- and hyperthyroidism

- Stress management and adrenal support

- Mood swings, depression

- Insomnia and anxiety

- Back, neck, shoulder tension

- Mental focus, clarity

- Energy and vitality

How to take the next step & work with Lena

My aim is to have the biggest possible positive impact on people around the globe for them to live their best lives holistically. Therefore you can work with me online and in person. Inquire here or make a booking here.

LOCAL: Southwest Australia – Dunsborough/ Yallingup/ Margaret River Region

I serve my local community with my offerings around the Margaret River area. You can book in for private 1:1 sessions with me for an individualised clinical approach at my private practice in Yallingup Siding, 6282 from where I also conduct my integrative ma