Former drug smuggler helps Brixton Yogathon

Former drug smuggler Nick Brewer helped lead the first ever Brixton Yogathon on Sunday 26th February.

Some 13 yoga teachers and students participated in the Yogathon – 108 sun salutations  over the course of three hours - raising nearly £2000 in sponsorship for the Prison Phoenix Trust, which supports yoga and meditation in prisons through the UK and Ireland.

Nick Brewer, who grew up in Tulse Hill, got into yoga while serving a ten-year sentence in an Argentinian jail. He now teaches yoga in west London and told participants: “I know how important yoga is in prison and what a difference it can make. I was out of control, a monster and yoga saved me from myself.”

Yoga teacher and former Talma Road resident, Chris Holt, who organised the event, said: “A huge thank you to all the participants and their sponsors and to Yoga Point for giving us the space.

“As yoga teachers and students we know that yoga operates on so many levels –physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. We hope that the yoga classes, books and CDs that our donations will provide, will help more prisoners deal with stress, anger and addiction and perhaps help them to break patterns of behaviour that are destructive to themselves and others.”

Priscila Diniz, who teaches yoga in Brixton Prison, led 12 rounds of sun salutations – a flowing sequence of more than 10 yoga postures.

The Prison Phoenix Trust supports yoga and meditations, with classes, books and CDs in around half of the prisons and young offenders institutions in the UK and Ireland. If you would like to donate you can support the Brixton Yogathon here.