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Changing the Face of Yoga Podcast: Yoga and Mental Health

Changing the Face of Yoga Podcast with Dr Michael de Manincor

Listen to Michael’s discussion with Stephanie Cunningham on yoga and mental health now and in the future.

“People feel good after a physical based asana yoga class, this feeling has led to a wonderful enquiry that has started to help people realise that yoga is much more than an alternative exercise or activity, there is a real tangible benefit. Yoga really has a significant impact on mood states, sense of wellbeing and on stress levels. People are becoming more aware of the mental health benefits

The mental health benefits of yoga is no longer the talk on the streets, it is being backed up by more and more research.“ Michael

“Thank you for all of your help and a great interview. Your
participation is the reason that we can launch this podcast and expand
the perception and definition of yoga.” Stephanie

Listen now


Does yoga improve your mental health?

Dr Michael de Manincor’s PhD research says yes!

The Facts:

In today’s society mental health concerns are becoming more and more prolific.

In 2011-12, it was estimated that three million people in Australia (13.6% of the adult population) had a mental health condition, an increase from 11.2% in 2007-08, and 9.6% in 2001 (Australian Health Report, ABS, 2012). And, there are many more people who experience some form of anxiety that is not diagnosed or reported.

We may experience a mental health concern ourselves, or know a loved one who is.

Give it a try, yoga can improve your mental health!

How can we support you?

Email or call us: reception@yogainstitute.com.au 0477 021 219

Join us, together we will grow, learn and inspire.

Yoga and healing: A Personal Journey

By Rosie Caunt

A slip on a piece of cardboard left me in excruciating pain.

What to do? Breathe 

As the pain advanced, as the radiologist twisted my foot this way and that breath and my regular mantra ‘om namaha’were my friends.
As a yogi of 30 years I began to understand why I had a daily practice
My body, breath and mind knew exactly what to do and how to care of me.
It turns out, I had a dislocated foot and two fractures.
Thanks to modern medicine and surgery they could be fixed.

But what to do with 5 weeks off my feet?
I could have better mastered my crutches which i did later but i listened to my body.
I was in the privileged position to be able to rest and not rush to work, so rest I did.

I did sooo much yoga and no asana at all.
If I woke in the night I went straight to yoga nidra.
In the morning the daily intention was set.
This was followed by simple exercises for strengthening the plastered leg.

Early on I had no energy for simple asana after 2 surgeries in 2 days but i was immediately visualising strength in my bones, balancing on my leg and walking to work.  I also spent most of my hospital days and later days upside down with my leg up the wall.

It was easy to sit up in bed and get out of bed due to my strength and flexibility from my years of yoga practice.

The hospital staff were amazed. I repeatedly said to them ,this is not me being special this positivity, strength  and flexibility is Yoga.

My practice supported me to sink fully into the space and focus of healing myself. I was content to travel the journey and allow.

Four months later pinned and plated I almost have full movement.
I can easily sit in vajrasana. On my heels.
My full asana practice is slowly returning
My meditation skills have improved 10 fold
I have a deep new empathy for the disabled
One cannot open the door of a public toilet on crutches, the doors are too heavy
And I have a new respect for my body, my own discipline for practice and all 8 limbs of yoga

I offer thanks to modern surgery and my yoga teachers past and present ohhhh and my fabeeee helpers.


How can we support you?

Interested in teacher training? Get course prospectus
Interested in Yoga Therapy Training? Visit our webpage
Interested in developing a personal home practice? Visit our webpage

Email or call us: teachertraining@yogainstitute.com.au 0477 021 219

Join us, together we will grow, learn and inspire.

Am I ready for Yoga Teacher Training?

It’s one of the most common questions asked.

When considering yoga teacher training, it is natural to believe we need to be able to hold a perfect headstand with ease or sit comfortably meditating in lotus pose for hours.

Along with wondering if you’re ready, it is natural to ask yourself “will I be good enough?” The truth is, if you love yoga and feel a burning desire to learn more, then yoga teacher training is for you.

One of my favourite parts of my job is when our students and graduates share their stories. Our inspiring yoga teacher Annie Kirkman shares her biggest fear and her experience of studying at The Yoga Institute.

“Will I be good enough?”

If you find yourself asking this question, let us reassure you that you’re not alone! Most students considering teaching will ask themselves this question.

Video Interview: Annie Kirkman

“Yoga is not about the perfect warrior”

“The moment I walked in on my first day of training I realised very quickly this course was going to be about much more than learning how to do the perfect warrior. What blew my mind was the depth of the yoga teachings that we got to understand. It took me about five minutes to realise I was in the right place.”

This brought tears to our eyes, music to our ears and warmth to our hearts…..we love you Annie!

Watch NOW


How can we support you?

Our Teacher Training Course isn’t just for aspiring teachers, but for anyone who wants to deepen their personal practice and gain a better understanding of yoga.

Need more information?
Get course prospectus
Information Session and Webinar details

Email or call us: teachertraining@yogainstitute.com.au 0477 021 219

Join us, together we will grow, learn and inspire.

2018 Highlights in Review

by Michael de Manincor


What a year!!! So much has happened….


2018 has been another big year for everyone at The Yoga Institute, and our Director, Michael de Manincor. As the river of yoga continues to flow, nourishing the lives of many people, we see familiar river-scapes and new pathways, finding its way into unchartered waters. Here are a few of the many highlights for us throughout 2018, many of them as first offerings throughout this year. In fact, most of them are new, apart from our well-established Teacher Training course.    

Course Graduations

  • Yoga Teacher Training: recent celebrations for almost 50 graduates from our Diploma level (500 hr) Teacher Training course. We have now been offering teacher training for almost 20 years, and our focus always remains on the quality, depth, and transformative experience, to keep the river flowing.
  • Wagga Wagga: in partnership with Divine Wellbeing, we also completed our first teacher training course in Regional NSW.
  • Yoga Therapy Training: our first group of students have now completed our newly registered Graduate Yoga Therapy Training course.
  • Heart of Yoga Courses: extraordinary in-depth experiences of personal growth and transformation. Another newly developed course in 2018.

Retreats and Holidays

  • Graduate Reunion Retreat: our first ever reunion retreat for graduates of The Yoga Institute, returning to Govinda Valley. More to come next year…
  • Heart of Yoga Retreat: held at the Quest for Life property in the beautiful Southern Highlands.
  • Savour Italy: a mindful experience “savouring” the charms and experiences that only Italy can offer.
  • Heart of Africa: another mindful travel experience, in the wildlife parks of Africa.


Professional achievements and university connections of our Director, Michael de Manincor

  • New Academic Appointment: Following the success of his PhD, Michael has recently been appointed as the first ever Post-doctoral Research Fellow in Mind-Body Integrative Medicine at the new Westmead premises of NICM Health Research Institute, Western Sydney University.
  • Michael is also the lead in development of yoga and other mind-body therapies at the newly established Western Sydney Integrative Health (WSIH) centre – the first of its kind University research-based Integrative Medicine centre in Australia. This opens the door for the emerging field of yoga in integrative medicine.
  • Michael has also been invited to join an international work-group with the World Health Organisation (WHO), for establishing benchmark standards for yoga teacher and yoga therapy training.


Conference presentations

  • Psychiatry Conference – New Zealand: Michael’s presentation of research in yoga and mental health at the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatry (RANZCP) annual congress in New Zealand – 2nd year in a row!
  • Yoga Australia Conference – Keynote presentation by Michael
  • SYTAR – Yoga Therapy conference: Virginia, USA



  • Celebrating Desikachar – Michael was an invited guest at a commemoration of the 80th birthday of TKV Desikachar, with many of the world’s leading yoga teachers, at Kripalu, USA. An unforgettable experience!

Looking forward to a another year of connecting the dots of our work and our hearts 



The Yoga Institute acknowledges the Cammeraygal people of the Eora nation as the Traditional Custodians of the land on which our centre is based.

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