Laura O’Driscoll

Yoga Instructor, Athlete & Physical Therapist

Dabbling in yoga over many years, but never quite finding the right teacher or style that enticed me enough to take time out of my run, bike, swim routine, it was only in 2012, a car accident sidelined me, forcing me to search for alternatives to my usual “don’t stop ‘til you drop” approach to sport, and indeed life.

Recovering from a full meniscus tear in my knee, and whiplash, my usual go to recovery of swimming was initially not an option.  I went from 100%, invincible, training for my first 70.3 Ironman, to zero.  The adrenaline received from hours of training that I had relied on for many years diminished, fast.

I may have gone a little yoga crazy after that.  Yoga replaced my run/bike/swim for a short time.  The power yoga in particular gave me a physically strong practice, aerobic advantage and, as time passed, a calmer mind.

As an athlete, yoga has taught me how to listen to my body, become aware of niggles, strengthen neglected areas, stretch overworked tissues.  It has taught me mental focus, but also how to shelf the ego.  It has taught me patience.  Yoga has taught me about form and how much stronger we can be with core engagement and controlled breathing.  It taught me about my physical limitations and how to be ok with these.

Mostly, yoga taught me how to focus on what I can do and accept what I cannot.

With a background in architecture and education, I continue to work part-time in both. My passion is movement and enabling people to reach their optimum range of motion, through yoga and movement therapy.  I am qualified in Neuromuscular and Physical Therapy, giving me a deeper understanding of how the body works (2009 NTC). I am also certified at Level 1 and 2, Movement Optimisation for Prehab and Performance, with a specialism in Movement and Performance Therapy (RehabU 2020).

I qualified as a yoga instructor through Ashtanga Yoga Mysore in 2013 (YA certified 200), after which I spent some time developing my practice in Goa, through Yoga Bones.  I taught a variety of yoga types in Australia, Canada and most recently Ireland, and continue to teach a mixture of Vinyasa flow, power core and restorative yoga, specialising in classes for the athlete.  I also write a “Yoga for the Athlete’ regular for Kayathlon adventure racing magazine.

When I am not on the mat, I am found running and biking the mountains, paddling, swimming and generally adventuring. I have held the National 50k and the National Adventure Racing Series titles for the last two years. Most recently I have been competing in ultra running and simply enjoying the freedom of the hills.

Visit: theyogiathlete.com
Call: +353 83 8229718