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A Sense of Well-being

Maybe it’s the air – big lungfuls of salty maritime air bowling in across the Atlantic – but it’s healthier to be by the sea. They’ve done research and it’s a fact. All of which makes being on a small island rather good news.

The Isles of Scilly has always been a pretty healthy place to live, though historically, in terms of medical care, it may have had its limitations. For centuries, the nearest doctor was on the mainland but that is not to say that islanders were helpless.

“For want of male practitioners in physic, the few diseases and hurts in these healthful Islands have, for these many years last past been remedied by a society of skilful Aunts, constituting a sort of College of Physicians in Scilly…” So wrote Robert Heath, an officer garrisoned on St Mary’s in the 1740s. Fortunately we no longer need to rely on skilful aunts to stay alive on the isles, but when it comes to the well-being of body and soul, the ladies are still leading the way.

“Tresco simply removes all the hustle and bustle, all the distractions of life that fill up your head. It’s a peaceful space, surrounded by sea. I think it’s the best place in the world," says our yoga instructor Lucy Aldridge.

Lucy qualified as a Iyengar Yoga teacher in 1996 and has been coming to Tresco for the past six years. Lucy explains Iyengar Yoga: “It’s based on the principle of correct body alignment. When the body is aligned, energy can move freely – breathing is easy and the mind is quietened. It’s a physical yoga but you can do as much or as little as you want. It was founded by Mr Iyengar, who was voted one of the most influential people in the world by Time magazine in 2004!”

“Yoga has helped me deal with many life changes and challenges. Coming to my mat each day brings me back to my centre and who I really am," she adds. Lucy has been teaching yoga for more than seventeen years. "It's the best job in the world". She is also a qualified sports and remedial massage therapist.

In addition to her regular Wednesday yoga classes, Lucy also leads the regular yoga breaks on Tresco. 2013 also sees something a bit different – a dedicated well-being weekend.

“The Well-Being Long Weekend is designed for a group of girlfriends who want to get away from it all and have a healthy break that’s fun, luxurious and good for them too. It’s suitable for all ages. Ladies can come and stay in a cottage together and enjoy a range of activities – not simply yoga! I offer a bespoke service, so I can tailor activities to suit individuals or groups. For example, as well as yoga and spa treatments, I also offer posture assessment, popular with brides-to-be. Learning how to stand correctly and breathe in a relaxed manner brings an instant sense of calm to soothe the nerves on the big day. I lead meditational walks too. The walks are very much about focussing on one’s surroundings and being in the present.”

Yoga classes

Lucy Aldridge takes yoga classes on Tresco every Wednesday. The 1½ hour sessions cost £10 with yoga mats and blocks provided. Booking is essential – please call the Spa +44 (0)1720 424075. Five night yoga breaks are also available - please call the Island Office +44 (0)1720 422849.

“The Well-Being Long Weekend is designed for a group of girlfriends who want to get away from it all and have a healthy break that’s fun, luxurious and good for them too.

Lucy Aldridge

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