Lissa Foley-Hughes Founder Yogalilies – I spent 7 years in a professional career, and I guess I got to that certain age when goals are achieved dreams are realised and yet I couldn’t shake this profound sense of feeling “ is this it”. I had always enjoyed Yoga and Pilates so it became an obvious choice to explore the possibilities of embarking on a new path in teaching. Twenty years later, 10 years of study & over 10,000 teaching hours I’m still here as teacher and a life time student of yoga and Pilates and I thoroughly enjoy sharing my knowledge and passion to all the wonderful students and teachers I meet each day in class.

I never considered starting my own business. Then one day I was teaching in yet another cold, soulless community centre and I kept thinking how many improvements could be made to make my students experience of yoga and Pilates more joyous – the environment, the temperature, the facilities, the lack of sense of community amongst students and fellow teachers… I also felt very passionately about broadening the reach of yoga in Newcastle. I could never have done this without the amazing people around me.

I have been unbelievably lucky in having a team of people that have gone out of their way to help turn it into a great studio. Their passion, support and kindness has honestly moved me to tears, and I thank them all. I am also hugely touched by everyone that comes to the studio and says something about how much they enjoy coming.  It makes it all worthwhile. What has amazed me is how a comparatively “dead” space has for me turned into a living space, and everyone that uses the space enhances this.  It will continue to grow and improve, and I hope that everyone who visits feels they have the chance to contribute.

Lissa is an experienced and advanced Pilates expert with over 20 years of teaching experience, holding three Pilates certifications with CYQ, OCR and the internationally renowned BASI (Body Arts and Science International). In addition, Lissa has trained with BWY and is  a fully qualified Personal Trainer with London Central YMCA and holds additional qualifications with EFI Sports Medicine USA in Gravity Personal Training and Gravity Pilates Group. In addition, she is currently studying Transpersonal Psychotherapy with Clearmind Institute with an aim to provide the best teaching & transformational coaching experience possible. Lissa is a Licensed Desire Map Facilitator and is passionate about hosting Yoga + Desire Map Retreats globally (a truly transformational process!)

Lissa’s true passion is Meditation and her daily practice keeps her sane, whilst running the business of Yoga! She is continually adding to her repertoire of qualifications to provide the best teaching experience possible. Her vocation and mission in her teaching is in helping people find movement, freedom and joy in their bodies with patience, persistence and playful exploration (a big dose of music goes along way too)!

Karen Marsh – I came to the mat, like a lot of people, as a suggestion from a friend. I’ve always been the sort of person that likes to keep fit and to be healthy so I started practicing yoga regularly to gain strength and flexibility. I enjoyed the physical challenge and with more practice I began to notice changes in my whole being, not only physically, but whole body and mind. I practiced Bikram, Ashtanga, Power, Yin, Hatha and Hatha Flow. I became hooked and decided it was more than a hobby and wanted yoga to be my whole way of life and to share it with other people.

In 2010 I undertook my 200hr Sivananda teacher training course in India – studying yoga philosophy and asana. My love and spiritual connection to yoga deepened and strengthened my purpose. I feel like I have found the path I was meant to travel. I have had the great pleasure of attending workshops with David Swenson and Clara Roberts and look forward to continue learning from other great teachers.

In my Vinyasa Flow class people can expect to leave feeling both energized and relaxed. It is possible to be both! I hope to combine enough of a challenge to engage the concentration and interest of each student whilst also being sensitive to their abilities and needs so they can leave feeling good and motivated. I try to create a non-competitive and non-judgemental atmosphere, I hope to engender in each person a deeper connection, appreciation and contentment with their body. I hope to give a sense of wonder and enthusiasm for the challenges of the body and the mind. Overall I hope people leave feeling a sense of calm, acceptance, and well being and with a desire to learn more about themselves and yoga.

Karen is a certified yoga teacher with 840 hours of teaching qualifications:

200 hour Hatha Yoga Teacher Training Certification with Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre in Kerala, India in December 2010

40 hour Yin Yoga Teacher Training with Norman Blair in London, UK in May 2015

300 hour Vinyasa Yoga Teacher Training with Sampoorna Yoga in Agonda, India in January 2016

300 hour Advanced Yoga Teacher Training Certification with Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre in Kerala, India in February 2016

Karen looks forward to a lifetime of continued learning, teaching and sharing yoga and passionately believes that yoga is for everyone, she has also taught yoga courses for local North East cancer charity FACT and mental health charity Mind. To find out more visit:

Hans Bartholdi – I first began my yoga journey about 12 years ago, when I would regularly attend the weekly Hatha classes that took place in the local village hall.  However, when a purpose built Hot Yoga studio opened in nearby St Albans, I wasted no time joining and soon I was well and truly hooked!

Practicing yoga became part of my daily life. Loving all of the aspects and benefits yoga had to offer, from physical exercise and flexibility, through to concentration and relaxation, I decided to take the next big step to increase the level of knowledge and understanding and signed up for a 500 hour teacher training course at the start of 2013. I have been teaching Hatha yoga regularly since then.

Trips to India to practice and train at Sampoorna Yoga have helped me to expand my experience and have helped me to develop a fun, dynamic style of teaching. I enjoy teaching at all levels and am sympathetic to the needs of the total beginner, yet equally able deliver a challenging class for the more experienced yogi. I tend to adapt my classes as I teach them, adjusting the tempo according to the ‘energy’ in the room. I layer individual asanas where possible, giving options from easy to more advanced, thus allowing each student to go to the point they feel comfortable with. Occasionally though, I like to encourage the more regular students to bump themselves out of that comfort zone and to push their boundaries which in turn will help them take the next steps on their own yoga journey.

 I look forward to seeing you on the mat!

Terri Eagleton – Iyengar yoga is an inclusive practice and an enriching way of life. Regular practice helps to integrate mind, body and emotions. The system of teaching is methodical and progressive, emphasising detailed correctness and absolute safety. When necessary, it uses supports called ‘props’ that allow students to progress in their practice of postures safely at their own pace, to suit their body.

BKS Iyengar lives and continues to teach yoga his way, in Pune India. He is 96 years old, and his daughter, son and now grand-daughter are taking up the reins. His method of teaching is popular throughout the world. It was introduced into this country over 50 years ago and came to the North East of England 30 years ago.

I first started to study Iyengar 16 years ago, and was immediately impressed with its effect on my wellbeing. I attended many classes with truly inspiring teachers and decided to train to become a teacher myself. This took five years in total; I qualified in 2003 as an Introductory teacher, and then took my Intermediate certificate, levels 1 and 2. Every year we are required to complete a professional development day and I attend regular classes and workshops to extend my own learning and share it with my students.

Chloe McSwaine – Yoga for Real Life Yoga Teacher (Kundalini)

I was at my lovely friend Fiona’s house and she had a book on her coffee table called “Yoga for Real Life” by Maya Fiennes. The title intrigued me so I started to flick through it and I ended up reading the whole thing cover to cover that day. I really liked the sound of what it offered – “more energy, more creativity, more fun and real peace.” I immediately went out and bought my own copy and started following the exercises in the book and I haven’t looked back.

My life was rather stressful at the time and I was amazed at how peaceful my first session made me feel – it was this glimpse of a more calmer and peaceful me that kept me coming back to the mat as I wanted to feel like that again and for it to last longer each time.

I have been practising YFRL myself regularly since 2010. I really wanted to attend a class in Newcastle but I couldn’t find anywhere that taught this kind of yoga. I ended up attending one of Maya’s retreats in Spain in 2013 which led to me doing my teacher training with her in 2015.

YFRL has changed my life immeasurably for the better and I truly believe that anyone can benefit from it. My hope is that others come to love YFRL as much as I do.

Pamela Galbraith –  began dancing at a young age where her passion for ballet led her to achieve a ballet scholarship with the British Ballet Organization. This opportunity led her to expand her dance repertoire where she discovered contemporary dance and went on to graduate from the Northern School of Contemporary Dance.  It was here that the chance to educate, motivate and inspire children through dance was the catalyst for her later becoming a dance teacher.

As a qualified BBO teacher of ten years, Pamela has primarily taught ballet along with other forms of dance to children and adults from beginners to advanced level. She has also coached students embarking upon vocational dance training through Dance City’s Advanced Teaching Programme. With dancing as an expression of the soul, it should not be restricted to anyone of any age but enjoyed and practised with an open heart…all you need is the passion to have fun and let go.

Hi I’m Lexy Seedhouse – I’ve been a student and practitioner of yoga for around 15 years. At its most fundamental, I see yoga as being a method of moving around the body’s energy to encourage a healthy flow. I’ve probably tried every style of yoga going (apart from the one where you have to be naked!), and I’ve come to understand that yoga can be whatever you need it to be, and that there’s style to suit everybody.

In my classes, I aim to fuse the strength and discipline of Ashtanga, with the refinement, alignment and heart opening of Anusara. If that doesn’t mean too much to you― don’t worry―the class will be flowing and dynamic for your body, but always with a focus on uplifting and opening emotionally and spiritually. I challenge my students to go beyond the physical practice of yoga with pranayama (breath work) and meditation, to encourage a more mindful presence, focused awareness and conscious breath.

I invite you to come and deepen your practice in a safe and supportive environment, where I hope you can take a few minutes or hours out of your week to calm your mind and nurture your body.

Dr Jessica  Komes – Right in my first yoga class in 2008, I was fascinated by the challenge of not judging or evaluating any upcoming bodily or mental sensation, but solely observing and experiencing the effects on all levels. Shortly after that, I strongly felt the need to more and more engage into the world of Yoga and the concepts it holds for increasing life quality and emotional well-being. Yoga had brought me a not only a lot of joy, it had provided me with inner peace and strength to face the challenge of life and I wanted to share this experience with other people.

In 2011, I started my teacher training with the German and European Yoga Union (BDY/EYU, an associated organization with the British Wheel of Yoga, BWY) and  received my certificate (500hr teacher training) in 2013 and completed my 4-year (880hr) training in November 2015. Additionally, I have accomplished an Ante and Postnatal Exercise Training to guide pregnant women and new parents  through their times of change with Yoga.

As my Yoga teacher training also embraced the beneficial aspects of core stability, I am also a Pilates instructor and have enjoyed teaching both Yoga and Pilates since 2012 in different studios in Germany.

During this time, I also became a stress management trainer (certified by the Institute of Health Psychology, Marburg, Germany), studied mindful-based meditation and stress reduction (after Jon Kabat-Zinn) and completed my PhD in Psychology at Jena University, Germany.

Due to the variety of experiences, all of which I am deeply grateful for, my classes, both groups and privates, always incorporate a holistic approach beyond the physical level, inspired by yoga philosophy and psychology and tailored to my clients’ needs. Based on my own journey, I strongly believe that yoga can bring you closer to yourself, letting you embrace yourself and unfold yourself in manifold ways. Perceiving an urgent desire to work with people, I appreciate the opportunity to bring some peace, freedom and joy to the lives of others.

Jasmine Roberts – trained from an early age in various styles of dance including ballet, tap and modern.  More recently I have studied Latin and Ballroom dancing but I have always been interested in how the body moves.   At the age of 15 I discovered I had hypermobility following a back injury during trampolining training.  As a result of this diagnosis I knew I had to keep  my body strong and I had to find  ways to help rehabilitate my body in order to reduce the pain I was experiencing. At University I studied Glass and Ceramics.  Most days I would be Glass blowing and this would often exacerbate my back pain and the physiotherapy exercises no longer helped.

Ballet had been a passion of mine and I wanted to practise the strengthening exercises to help my condition but the only adult class I could find was a BARRE CONCEPT class.  This discipline helped to strengthen my body and in the process I discovered Pilates which considerably changed my whole approach to exercise and rehabilitation.  Since discovering Pilates I have never looked back!  I can now say that most days I am completely pain free!

Once I had the ‘Pilates bug’ I decided to train as a Pilates instructor under Emma Newham from Pilates Union.  This has enabled me to have a greater understanding of how the body works and adopt a teaching style which tries to educate, strengthen and attend to the needs of my clients’ bodies.   Since qualifying as a  Pilates instructor I have also trained under Emma Newham, in Dublin,  to become a Barre Concept  teacher where I have been able to incorporate my love of dance (ballet predominantly), Pilates and music.   Barre Concept is a high intensity exercise class.  The body responds very quickly to the workout resulting in muscles being toned and reshaped plus the fast pace delivers a cardio workout which burns fat and can help with weight loss.

During my Barre classes I will be playing upbeat music, I will be encouraging you to push yourself to the next level with the technical workout which will be specially prepared for each classes’ needs.  We will all be sweating together (bring water!!) but it is a lot of fun and you will be looking like graceful ballerinas in no time!

Alongside teaching Pilates and Barre Concept I continue my own practise of Pilates, Barre Concept, Yoga and Aerial Yoga as each discipline has something different to offer to my body’s wellbeing.

Liz Watson – My first taste of yoga was over 10 years ago – I went with the intention of becoming more flexible, but soon realised there was much more to yoga.  As I began practising more regularly, yoga became my whole mind and body workout, keeping me balanced as life rushed around me. As my hobby grew into a passion, I decided that teaching yoga would be my next step. In 2010 I qualified as a teacher in Ashtanga with Union Yoga (Yoga Alliance RYT200) and have been teaching regularly ever since.

Alongside my teaching, I continue to attend workshops and have practised with a variety of excellent teachers, learning from all of them. In January 2014 I spent an incredible two weeks in Goa practicing under the guidance of the world renowned Ashtanga teacher Kino MacGregor and her husband Tim Feldmann. My classes at Yogalilies will deliver a shortened Ashtanga primary series practice to invigorate the body and focus the mind.

Erika Freyr –  has been practicing yoga her entire life. Her mother started prenatal yoga before she was born- that’s 27 years of experience! The daughter of a trained Iyengar yoga teacher, she found her own favourite style in Ashtanga Yoga and received her 200 hour certification with Yoga Alliance UK in 2011. Due to the strict Iyengar training of her early experience, Erika is keen to maintain a balanced and open attitude to her practice and teaching. She includes elements of her wider experience as a runner and a boxer, which makes her classes perfect for those who like a challenge and who like to work up a sweat

She has wide experience of working through injury, both in her own practice and with her students, many of whom use her classes as a way to round off their training in other sports. The emphasis in her classes is on a relaxed but goal oriented approach to yoga as a method for really expanding your range. Erika has taught yoga to everyone from ballerinas to cage fighters, from boxing gyms to beaches- everyone is welcome

Deborah Mullinder -Deborah has practiced yoga on and off for many years to bring balance to a very busy career. She knew she wanted to do more than the odd class here and there and in 2013 life’s journey took her to Glasgow. It was here where Deborah was encouraged by her teacher to deepen her practice. In 2015 she took herself off to her first yoga retreat in Spain with Sally Parkes Yoga and on her return, she signed up for teacher training. Deborah completed her 200 hour Laxmi Yoga Teacher Training, with Sally Parkes Yoga in London. The Laxmi principles are based around energy, neutral alignment, healthy mobility and breath work. The practice is dynamic and energising but does not exhaust the body. Laxmi encourages you to be more at ease with your body so you can bring balance to your mind.

Show kindness, take nothing for granted, be open to learning and accept you are a work in progress. Do not seek perfection but strive to be the best version of yourself.


Sabina Medina-Kelman

I first started Pilates about 8 years ago. At first, it was a complement to my fitness routine at the time which included running and spinning mostly. Reformer Pilates was my first encounter with the method which I practised for years before I tried a mat class. Pilates took a first place in my fitness practise almost immediately.

After years in the busy corporate world in events and hospitality, I found sanctuary from life’s stress and a daily source of energy in my Pilates practise for years. Amazed by the body transformation, postural correction and overall life improvement in myself and others around me, I felt the need to share my experience with others. Now, I am a fully qualified Pilates instructor teaching Pilates on Mat, Reformer and MOTR (Movement On The Roller), and also teach Barre conditioning.

With a combination of Pilates, Cardio and Barre exercises, I will help you achieve your optimal ‘you’ by framing your core and improving your all-over conditioning to bring energy and balance to your life.

My mission is to inspire you to live happier, healthier, and longer. My fitness mantra is “whatever activities you choose, protect your fitness time as a core part of your everyday life for a more energetic, healthier, happier you”