Yoga Changed my Life graphic

Instead of a quiet retirement, Shirley Loughlin decided to throw herself into a yoga teacher training course at the age of 63

Shirley Loughin
  • NAME: Shirley Loughlin
  • AGE: 64
  • OCCUPATION: Yoga and meditation teacher
  • YOGA YEARS: 50+

Why did you start yoga

My late mum suffered badly from back pain. She read that yoga might be beneficial and when evening yoga classes were advertised in our local school, she roped me into joining her. I was only 13 but it truly felt like coming home. Over the years my practice has taken many different forms. I never truly believed that someone from my background could make a living as a yoga teacher. Once I retired, however, the opportunity to rediscover the passions of my youth led to one of the greatest challenges of my life — training to be a Seasonal Yoga teacher at the grand age of 63!

Favourite yoga haunts

I’m very partial to Lendrick Lodge in the beautiful Trossachs of Scotland for the variety of retreats and wonderful welcoming atmosphere they create. I love teaching in the new yoga studio in Craigsfarm, Livingston. I work there with a charity, delivering yoga and meditation classes to help those struggling with depression, anxiety or social isolation. Clients tell me how they love looking up through the skylights during relaxation, just watching the clouds drifting by.

How has yoga changed your life?

I’ve gone from being a retired, old, empty-nester to being a busy yoga and meditation teacher, leading workshops with friends and organising West Lothian’s first Yoga and Wellbeing Festival. I had thought my future was already mapped out — now I have no idea what’s round the corner and I love it!

Best yoga moment

Definitely the first day of my teacher training course. I remember thinking: I’m exactly where I’m meant to be. Surrounded by all those lovely, like-minded people I totally felt that I belonged.

Anything else

Unfortunately, yoga in the West has developed a reputation of being quite an exclusive activity. My business is named ‘AnyBodyCan Yoga’ to promote the understanding that we can all benefit from yoga, no matter what age, shape or condition our bodies might be in.

Find Shirley on Facebook at Anybodycan Yoga 

Om Magazine

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