Health & Grooming | The Reconnoisseur

Ancient wisdom and modern music from a yoga maverick

Who’d have thought that yoga and acid house music would mix?

Ancient wisdom and modern music from a yoga maverick

Image: Vanessa Galvin

April 03 2010
Catherine Moye

Tired of stinking of Deep Heat and weary of forking out a fortune on physiotherapists to treat my recurring knee injury, I decided, on my sister-in-law’s recommendation, to try yoga. So off I trotted to my local community centre, close to the fag-end of London’s Abbey Road. There I encountered David Sye, his body as covered in tattoos as the outside of the building was covered in graffiti.

Inside, Sye, a yoga elder who has been practising the art for more than 25 years, was a mine of ancient wisdom. He also turned out to be a fascinating character: the son of the late crooner Frankie Vaughan, he’s a yoga maestro to the rich and famous, but he also works on a Glasgow “street youth” project with the Youth At Risk organisation.

The yoga class itself was similarly unorthodox. I wasn’t expecting the occasional freak-out to acid house music, but Sye worked in Belgrade during the war in the former Yugoslavia and used music to drown out the noise. Thus his unique Yogabeats was born.

More conventionally we also performed the deepest of relaxing shavasanas at the classes, which lasted for up to two hours. And for just £14 that’s not just good value, it’s priceless.

Now, thanks to this yoga maverick, my knee is cured. And his Yogabeats, produced by Ndreams, will be available as a downloadable app, called Destress and Relax, from May.

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Exercise