About Neville Cregan
I was born and grew up in Manchester. After an uncomfortable time at school I travelled and worked around continental Europe for three years until a trip to India and Nepal in 1987 provided much needed time for reflection, adventure and reading . During this time I 'accidentally' spent a week at an ashram ( yes really accidentally, tagging along with a newly met friend ). This was about as far away from my origins as I could have imagined, and at the age of 21 I mostly just found it weird; BUT, I read one of the books in the ashram library called something like: All Religions Are One , which sowed a seed of curiosity in me.
On my return to the UK I took a modular Humanities degree in Brighton as a mature student, the seed ripened, and I ended up in the Anthropology/Religion/Culture department studying Indian philosophy including some traditional yoga texts and ideas.
Whilst working in social care and mental health services in Brighton I started more formally practicing hatha yoga in various styles and this lead to a teacher training course and teaching opportunities from there. I've taught yoga since 1997 in most settings including community centres, yoga studios, retreat centres, a learning disability day centre, a mental health rehab institution and work places such as Brighton Council and Gyndebourne Opera House. I am now more focused on residential yoga courses and teaching history and philosophy of yoga which I now do on four different courses see here .
It perhaps goes without saying that Yoga has helped me personally on many levels.
When I first trained in yoga my main interest had been in philosophy and meditation. But the practicals of hatha yoga necessarily put me in touch with teachers very knowledgeable in anatomy and physiology, matters of the body and therapeutic aspects of yoga. I was very fortunate that two of my teachers were osteopaths and had more knowledge than most on this aspect of yoga. Despite my initial resistance to learning this I eventually became fascinated and decided to expand my studies to Thai massage as this was the best massage I had experienced, and it's theory base and medical theory shares much with hatha yoga and ayurvedic medicine. I've studied all aspects of Thai massage that I've been able to access ( without speaking Thai) through courses in the UK , Thailand and even the USA. I also grew to love Thailand and Thai culture.
I've also always been very active, even perhaps 'sporty' ( in recent years ), particularly with regular and long distance cycling and more recently competitive table tennis . I've always found Thai massage and Sports type massages helpful to keep me well in addition to my yoga practice, as well as to address any particular aches, pains and minor injuries. In 2017 I studied Soft Tissue Therapy at the London School of Sports Massage to expand my massage skills and knowledge which I now combine into my Thai massage .
Health , Wellbeing and Spirituality .
I has become clear to me over time that true health is a combination of factors: feeling physically strong enough, well and balanced; feeling mentally/emotionally comfortable with oneself and others; and having some sense of connection with community, nature and the wider world . It's also not always that easy to create this amidst the demands of life.
Whilst it is certainly not the only way, for me a combination of hatha yoga ,meditation, some cardio exercise, receiving regular massage , a decent diet and making time for hobbies , commmunity and social activities has been winning combination in staying well amid the demands of a full life.
I hope that my work can help support people in their efforts to find the kind of balance that works for them.
My other interests include travel, reading, photography, film, music and competitive table tennis (South Devon League) . I've long been a DIY student of Anthropology and am embarking on an MSc in Social and Cultural Antrhopology at UCL this September (2022). I'm also a freelance writer and have contributed to various magazines and websites . My writing work is at www.nevillecregan.com
I live in Totnes, Devon where, apart from my work, I am raising my two sons.
For any enquires about any of my work please get in touch by e mail or call/text/WhatsApp 07915 650106
Qualifications and Experience.
University of Brighton.
BA Hons Humanities - 2/1
1995 - 1997 with Mary Stewart , Sophy Hoare and Peter Blackaby.
Post Graduate Courses
Too numerous to mention everything, but most significantly:
Many of my teachers were influenced or directly taught by Vanda Scaravelli which has been a helpful approach for me regarding the postures part of hatha yoga. But not only , my practice and teaching has been supported accross the yoga practice spectrum by a variety of teachers, practices and approaches. Particularly:
Desikachar ( RIP)
I've also learned a lot attending creative vinyasa classes in Chiang Mai , Thailand mainly at Wild Rose Yoga Centre where there are some great teachers both Thai and International.
Historically I attended silent retreats at Gaia House in Devon. In the 1990's I took a distance learning meditation course by Joseph Goldstein and Sharon Salzberg supported by Catherine McGee from Gaia House ( using snail mail - pre-internet days ! ).
Despite variations in presentation and style all these teachers helped me understand core universal principles of yoga common to all approaches.
I also learn much (if not the most) from my students through their varying needs, questions and responses to my teaching.
Thai Massage and Sports/Remedial Massage
I've practiced massage since 1998 and have taken numerous courses of study including:
Core Practice Courses.
Several courses of study and practice at Sunshine Massage School in Chiang Mai and their accredited teachers including - Kira Balaskas (UK) , Asokananda ( RIP ) ( Thailand ) , Ralf Marzen (UK) and Suriyan Punyafoo (Thailand).
Thai Medical Massage Practice Courses:
Thai Acupressure with Noam Tyroler - Thai Acupressure
Thai Massage Theory and Practice with Felicity Joy , Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Thai Massage Medical Therory and Practice with Nephyr Jacobsen at the Naga Centre in Portland USA . Naga Center
Thai Massage Therapy with Suryan Punyafoo in Chiang Mai , Thailand . Therapeutic Thai
Western Massage Training
Soft Tissue Therapy at the London School of Sports Massage . As a BTEC level 5 it's the highest level massage qualification available in the UK at present . There is much useful knowledge as well as techniques and ideas that can only enhance Thai massage.
As with anything I learn at least as much from my clients and their needs and responses to my work as any theoretical work.
I qualified in 2006 but no longer formally practice.
The School of Precision Reflexology with Jan Williamson.
Post graduate qualifications:
Chinese Reflexology with Sue Ehinger .
Thai Foot Massage at the Traditional Medicine Hospital in Chiang Mai.
Insurance to practice.
I'm insured for all of these with Balens Insurance , specialists in health practitioner insurance.
For enquires please e mail or call/text/WhatsApp 07915 650106