Suzanne gives online dance and yoga classes to help people cope with Coronavirus isolation

Dance and yoga teacher Suzanne Astley is using her skills to help people in lockdown get through the Coronavirus crisis.

Monday, 27th April 2020, 5:00 pm
Suzanne Astley, photographed at Fuelmizas, Ribchester, is giving free yoga and dance classes via Facebook Live sessions (photo: Neil Cross)

When her classes stopped and pupils became isolated in their homes she decided to give a free class online.

Now she has people taking part in the Facebook Live sessions both across the country and abroad.

The first classes received such an enthusiastic reception she decided to provide three free classes every week for anyone interested.

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Suzanne Astley and husband Nick in the Fuelmizas showroom which is doubling as a dance and yoga studio for the three times weekly online sessions (photo:Neil Cross)

Dancer and somatics movement educator Suzanne, from Hurst Green, near Preston said: “I wanted to help people, to give them another focus and hopefully it’s uplifting. There are people watching in London, France, the north of England, up in Scotland. It’s being able to bring people together a bit and feel they’ve got some support and people are enjoying it. People can also download (a class) and share it.”

She knows her online class has included nurses and she has made sure to include a special thank you to the NHS.

Using a studio base at the family business, Fuelmizas in Ribchester, Suzanne offers two somatic yoga classes a week and one contemporary ballet class. She admits it was a step into the unknown - now it has become a family affair with husband Nick filming the classes and Nick and their children helping to choose the music.

With extensive training in movement and dance she is used to using movement as therapy and knows how it can help in testing times. She said:“It’s a little offering, to just give something. I felt I wanted to be useful.”

Suzanne takes a bow (photo: Neil Cross)

As a youngster she won a Royal Ballet scholarship, later studied at Laine Theatre Arts, took a drama and dance degree and gained an MA in Dance Somatics and Wellbeing. She recently worked at the Royal Academy of Dance as a lecturer in dance and as a Student Support Officer.

Her website is entitled and advises: “The aim of Mindful Movement is to create an environment where you can solely concentrate your mind and body on rest and relaxation. Reconnect and come home to your body.”

* Suzanne Astley's free Facebook Live sessions: Contemporary Ballet Thursday 11.15am, Somatic Yoga, Tuesday 5.30pm and Saturday 11.15am.