Review: Camp Bestival - a true family festival


By YOGADOO founder and mum, Lucy Aston

This weekend we were at Camp Bestival and despite the wind and rain putting pay to Sunday's fun, the festival didn't fail to disappoint. 

It's our fourth time at Camp Bestival and every year the experience is different but glorious. As our son gets older (he's ten now, but first went when he was four) he is looking for different things from a festival and each year Camp Bestival delivers.

Unfortunately the organisers had to make the difficult decision to cancel the Sunday's lineup  because of incredibly strong wind and rain storms. But until that point it was business as usual at this award-winning family festival.

What's great about Camp Bestival is that everything is within a short walking distance of everywhere else. We took our camper van and were parked in Campervan A field, which was a 15 minute walk to the main arena and from there the kid's field and beautiful "Dingly Dell" wooded area was a 5/10 minute walk.

Our son, Freddie is completely obsessed with nature and wildlife so loved the forest school and wooden craft activities, he also spent lots of time talking to the wildlife charities learning more about their work! The Dingly Dell rainbow bunting filled area was perfect for some shade and cool breeze in the hotter moments and with a good coffee kiosk, so the adults were kept happy too! 

Just a short walk up from the woods, I spent many a happy moment in the Slow Motion area where a lot of the yoga, meditation and therapy sessions were running. It's a lovely part of the site overlooking the green spaces which surround Camp Bestival and it really offers a little sanctuary from the more crowded areas. You can read and relax and just unwind.

The musical lineup was good, and the Cuban Brothers kick-started our Friday afternoon, and Sara Cox's DJ set was perfect to get us into the party mood. Rae Morris was just gorgeous and Rick Astley persuading Baking Legend Mary Berry to go on stage to play the drums during his set was as bizarre as it was brilliant. Look here if you think I was dreaming!

The Junior Jungle set on Saturday was just perfectly bonkers to dance the afternoon away as the rain storms threatened. And Clean Bandit put on a good show to round-up the main stage activities on Saturday night. We also really enjoyed heading over to HMS Camp Bestival to see the "Blue coats" entertain the children and Rob Da Bank (who founded the festival a decade ago) did a great DJ set on Saturday afternoon. 

The acrobats and circus skills workshop were also other highlights, and if you haven't seen the Wall of Death motorcycle show before, it's definitely worth a look (although you do pay extra). The backdrop of the coloured lit castle and the fairground is beautiful and a ride in the big wheel is a must to appreciate the festival with a bird's eye view.

The range of food stalls is really fantastic and although not cheap, are pretty good value for the standard of food you get. Our advice would be to try and go back to your tent/van for tea for at least a couple of nights if you are there for the 3 or 4 day duration, as a) it gets expensive and b) everyone needs a little breather around tea time, a chance to get into warm clothes or top up the glitter!

What we love about Camp Bestival is the true family spirit we've seen amongst fellow campers, if a child gets lost, there is an army of parents on hand to form a search party, if you need anything at all (Calpol/coffee/a pump for an inflatable flamingo) you don't have to go far to ask someone who can help. This "True Brit Grit Resilient Parenting" was fully on show on Saturday night and Sunday as the weather began to turn. Just a little search on social media will show you a beautiful gallery of parents having "tent parties" and finding ingenious ways to entertain children as they waiting to hear whether Sunday's lineup would be cancelled. When the unfortunate announcement came, many stayed on site to make the most of their final festival day as the wind and rain battered the canvas of their tents. And that's what Camp Bestival is all about. The family spirit.

Camp Bestival was held at Lulworth Castle 26th-29th July.

YOGADOO founder Lucy Aston and her son Freddie were gifted the Festival tickets by Camp Bestival.


YOGADOO Summer Adult's yoga timetable


OK the summer holidays are officially here... and there are a couple of changes to the YOGADOO timetable. 

You can use your class pass across any class. 


Monday Flow yoga Weston Parish Hall 6:30pm-7:30pm      Book here

Wednesday Runner's yoga Weston Methodist Church 6:30pm-7:30pm   Book here

Friday BROGADOO (Men's yoga) Weston Methodist Church 6:15-7:15pm   Book

The following classes are on (with cover teachers listed where appropriate) MOVE GB please just book as normal for the dates which are running.


Monday 23rd (Lucy)

Wednesday 25th (Lucy)


Monday 30th (Lucy)


Wednesday 1st (Lucy)

Friday 3rd (Trish) 

Monday 6th (Lucy)

Wednesday 8th (Sophie)


Monday 13th (Robyn)

Wednesday 15th (Robyn)

Friday 17th (Robyn)

Monday 20th (Robyn)

Wednesday 22nd (Robyn)


Back to normal for all classes Monday 3rd September.


Have a great summer!

Here's 3 ways to use yoga and mindfulness to celebrate National Insect Week!


It's National Insect week (what do you mean you didn't know!) and this week YOGADOO teachers have taken an "insect" theme for their yoga and mindfulness sessions in schools. Where possible, we've taken classes outside, and furthermore tried to place our yoga mats amongst our insect friends.

So here's three ways you can celebrate National Insect week using these simple yoga and mindfulness techniques:

1) Practice some insect-yoga!

Thank you to the pupils of St Stephen's Primary school in Bath for helping us to be inspired by insects to come up with out top 12 insect-themed yoga poses! (Listed below)

Woodlouse : Rock and roll forwards and backwards or (Partner pose) Lizard on a rock

Worm: Forward bend (Ragdoll)

Butterfly: Cobblers pose

Millipede: Savasana

May Fly: Crow

Fly: Lie on belly with arms behind you (flying)

Slug: Upward facing dog

Ladybird: Child's pose with arms behind you (flying)

Snail: Bow

Beetle: Child's pose

Bee: Bumblebee breath buzzzzzzzzz - put your hand on your head to feel the vibrations!

Ant: Downward facing dog

(Click on the images below to move the carousel along)

2. Go for a mindful nature walk: Stop and look closely at the leaves, the trees, the logs, the grass. Notice all of the tiny details, can you see any creatures or insects living there? If you are very careful, take a see-through jar and place the insect inside so you can have a closer look, maybe even with a magnifying glass. But make sure you do not harm the creatures and put them back where you find them. You could even download a "Insect spotter" sheet like these and go and explore your garden or park and notice all the wonderful creatures who live around you.

(Click on the images below to move the carousel along)

3. Enjoy a tree meditation where you sit and you listen to the sounds of the trees moving in the breeze, try to listen for birdsong and maybe insects buzzing or flying past. Take the longest, slowest, deepest breaths that you can for five minutes, close your eyes and notice as may sounds close by and further away, as possible.

Notice how sitting still and breathing deeply makes you feel. 


National Insect week runs until the 24th June and is organised by the Royal Entomological Society Why not have a go at some of our ideas and send us a picture via social media.

YOGADOO presents "A taste of Indian summer" weekend yoga retreat

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As the English summer draws to an end, the Indian summer begins, and we invite you to join us for a weekend OF indulgent Indian inspired experience through yoga, meditation, food, fun and a celebration of Indian culture

YOGADOO presents The taste of Indian Summer weekend yoga retreat at the beautifully unique, boutique camping site, just 5 miles from Bath.

Retreat dates Friday 28th-Sunday 30th September.

Inspired by their recent trip to India together, YOGADOO founder, Lucy Aston and her friend and fellow yoga teacher, Bex Bridgford are joining forces and their passions to bring a flavour of India to Somerset.

A weekend celebration of India through yoga, meditation, connecting with the outdoors, sumptuous Indian cuisine, Bollywood dancing, Indian head massage workshops, an essential oils experience, sound bowl meditation, Indian-inspired crafting and much more!

Disconnect to Reconnect we hope this retreat will give you the opportunity to relax, unwind and connect with nature and yourself. Strictly limited to 14 places.

Timetable for retreat (Times and order of activities are subject to slight change)

All meals, drinks, snacks and activities are included in the retreat price

Friday afternoon

From 2:30pm Arrival and a welcoming offering of classic Indian chai and fresh juices, opportunity to enjoy a swim at The Farm Camp heated indoor pool. Begin to unwind and settle into your Indian inspired home for the weekend. We will also have henna artist to offer optional, complimentary small henna tattoos throughout the evening.

4:30pm-6:00pm Yoga session

6:00pm Prepare for dinner and meet the group

7:00pm Indian Banquet

9pm Campfire Meditation


8am Light breakfast

9am-10:30am Yoga session with essential oils

10:30am-11am Meditation

11:30am-12:30pm Vegan Brunch

12:30pm-3pm Activities including; Mandala creation, make your own mala beads, journaling

workshop, mindful nature walk and more. Option to book Lizzie for message

3pm Indian-inspired afternoon tea

4:00pm-5:30pm Yoga session

5:30pm-6:15pm Sound Bowl meditation and teas

7pm Indian Banquet

8:30pm Bollywood Dancing workshop


8am Light breakfast

9am-10:30am Yoga and Meditation, teas and fruit

11am- 12pm Indian head massage tutorial class with Lizzie Longhurst

Noon-1pm Indian-inspired picnic lunch

1pm Goodbye Meditation

1:30pm-3pm Optional crafts and swimming, nature walks, option to book a massage treatment


Yoga and Meditation workshops will be run by Lucy and Bex - classes will be fun, positive, and help you build a stronger connection to your body, blending the classic yoga poses into a beautiful mix of vinyasa flow that carries a creative feel with Indian-inspired soundtrack, whilst Forrest offers us a more dynamic class full of variations suitable for gravity surfers to beginners offering you a holistic approach into poses and can be modified to meet you where you are in your practice on the day.

As a real treat and we are delighted to welcome our guest teacher, massage therapist Lizzie Longhurst to give us an introduction to Indian head massage. This is a traditional Indian Ayurvedic therapeutic massage and an uplifting, yet relaxing treatment which will focus on you and your partner’s head, neck and shoulders. Using traditional Indian massage techniques to stimulate your upper body Marma points to rebalance and release held tension. This massage is great for stress related conditions, headaches, skin and hair health, postural imbalances and will leave you feeling re-energised and relaxed. We will use organic cold pressed oil for your head, but you can experience without oil if you prefer and the treatment is fully clothed. It is a wonderful massage to give to family and friends.

To complement our Meditation experience we will enjoy a crystal sound Bath to help you slip into a complete bliss. Scientific studies show that the vibrational sound creates a relaxed and meditative state, sleep can be improved, emotional shifts can happen. The meditative healing sound of the crystal sound bowl resonates and helps create harmony within the body, bringing you into a balance, this will be suitable for complete beginners.

Our afternoon of craft and other activities will include and introduction to journaling, we will create our own Indian meditation mala beads, enjoy a mindful nature walk, Indian mandala creation and more.

To delight your Indian senses further Lucy and Bex have designed a stunning sensual menu with flavours and smells that remind them of India. Inspired by the smells and tastes of the classic Ayurvedic diet that ordinates from India, but adding a modern twist to give you energy and the sense of being cleansed.

The Earlybird price for the full weekend is £425 (payable in instalments*) or £455 after the Earlybird deadline of 30 June.

There is a gallery of images below, please click on each picture to see the next image.

The price includes:

- Accommodation in a shared luxury yurt (we can accommodate groups of friends where possible (4 sharing)

- All meals, snacks, drinks, throughout the weekend, and wine on Saturday night.

- All Craft activities, Henna, Bollywood dancing, Indian Head massage taster and essential oils workshops. (Each guest will take away their own blend of essential oils.)

- All Yoga and Meditation classes (4 yoga classes and 5 meditation sessions)

- NOT INCLUDED but bookable in advance 1-1 Treatments: Book a well-earned treatment with Lizzie to complete your yoga weekend and feel even more relaxed. Choose from or ask for a blend of Holistic massage, reflexology or Thai Yoga massage (Thai only available for longer sessions). More information will be sent on booking.

To book, click here

Payment plan

*£125 deposit paid before 30 June

1st Instalment paid by end of July £100

2nd Instalment paid by end of Aug £100

3rd Instalment paid in Sept £100 (or £135 if non-early bird) before 28th September

Doo Meditate - a brand new Mindfulness Meditation course in Bath


NEW CLASS: Doo Meditate™. A beginner’s guide to “real life” mindfulness meditation, to use in the modern world. Limited to 10 spaces. This is a complete introduction course and not for experienced meditators. (Lucy will be starting an advanced course later in the year.)

You cannot have escaped to notice that everyone seems to be talking about “mindfulness” and “meditation” recently? But what is your image of meditation? Have you tried it? What do you think it feels like to meditate? 

What makes this course different is that we immediately make the meditation training completely applicable to real and modern day situations. How to meditate in noisy or busy environments, how to move mindfully, and how to meditate or practice mindfulness when our mind is just too busy. 

Over the five week course, through practical exercises you will learn methods to manage stress, anxiety and moods. There are two courses running, one on a Monday evening at Weston Parish Hall (PLACES AVAILABLE), one on a Wednesday at Weston Methodist Church (SOLD OUT) - booking link at the bottom.

The Doo Meditate™ Five week course will give a basic introduction to:

1) Why we practice mindfulness and meditation, what is the difference between the two practices and we’ll learn the foundations of mindfulness meditation.

2) The science bit, how does meditation and mindfulness work?

3) We’ll look at how we process thoughts, emotions, habits and choices

4) We’ll explore mindful movement, and meditation on the move!

5) Strategies for ongoing mindfulness and meditation in our own lives

£50 for five week course.

Monday 8pm-9pm From 11th June-16th July (no class 2nd July Weston Parish Hall, High St, Weston. More info/to book here

Wednesday 8pm-9pm. From 13th June-18th July (no class 4th July) Weston Methodist Church, Newbridge Hill, Bath (entrance: Newbridge Hill) SOLD OUT


Half term holiday opening times


It's half term and there are a few changes to the YOGADOO timetable, please take a look below. Please book in the normal way, by emailing


MONDAY 28th - No classes

TUESDAY 29th - No adult's classes / YOGADOO Holiday Club (Peter Rabbit themed)

WEDNESDAY 30th - Runner's Yoga

THURSDAY 31st - No adult's classes / YOGADOO Holiday Club (The Greatest Showman themed)


Have a great half term everyone, and look out for some new classes starting after half term, for adults and children!!

MHAW BLOG: Professor Green on why mental health education should be taught in schools


YOGADOO founder, Lucy Aston went to listen to musician Professor Green at his appearance at the Forum, as part of the Bath Festival.

The appreciation for the strong female role models who raised him, a potential career in politics, his love/hate relationship with social media and why mental health education should be on the school curriculum, were just some of the subjects Professor Green touched on last night, where he was speaking as part of the excellent Bath Festivals 70th anniversary programme.

Musician and Documentary maker, Professor Green – real name Stephen Manderson has become one of the most high-profile, celebrity campaigners on mental health issues.

Born in 1983 and raised on a Hackney Estate, Professor Green’s music career began with his album Alive Till I’m Dead in 2010 and saw him collaborate with Lily Allen and Example, amongst others. Having battled anxiety and depression from an early age, he has worked tirelessly to raise awareness of mental health issues, becoming a patron of the charity CALM and making a series of thought-provoking documentaries.


Professor Green talked emotionally and fondly of his love, respect and gratitude for the incredibly strong women who raised him. His Nanny Pat and his Great Granny Edie, the latter with whom he credits with instilling his love of storytelling after he’d creep down in the early morning (before the cartoons had started on the TV) and cuddle under his Gran’s blue blanket and listen to her stories.

In recent times, Green’s love for story telling has seen him side step into documentary making, with his most recent Channel 4 documentary, Working Class White Men and the first, “Suicide and Me” where he addresses his father’s suicide, which he says he still hasn’t been able to watch back. “It was never really supposed to be about my story” “But you have to make yourself vulnerable to be able to experience anything properly”.  “It’s important that I walk into the story without a preconceived idea with the direction it will go in. I refused to work with one Director who had a set idea on the arc the documentary should take. But I need to let it unfold naturally, otherwise what’s the point?”

But you have to make yourself vulnerable to be able to experience anything properly.
— - Professor Green

Professor Green spoke openly and honestly about his Dad’s suicide and how it has taken him through a range of emotions through his life, and why hope and forgiveness is so important to recovery. What would you want your father to say to you if he was here in the room right now? “Sorry” – came the answer. One particularly emotional moment was where Green spoke about a dream he’d had in the last year or so, where he’d woken in floods of tears. “In the dream, I was flying a kite and the wind was really strong, I heard my dad’s voice really clearly say ‘What are you holding on for, it’s easier to let go’ it was amazing to hear him say those words.” Green is also a proud patron of CALM, The Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) which is leading a movement against male suicide, the single biggest killer of men under 45 in the UK.


It’s Mental Health Awareness week, and with the work YOGADOO does in schools, what does he think about the state of the nation’s children’s mental health?

“Mental Health was never discussed when I was at school. Not once. Mental Health Education should become part of the curriculum, the earlier it becomes part of a discussion for children the better. Kids are like sponges, they’re inquisitive. Education is key to solving the mental health epidemic. If we placed the same importance on teaching our kids empathy, as we do numeracy, the world would be a much better place.”

"It's crucial that young people find a way to express themselves, that helps when they are bottling things up, rap and music were my releases."

Education is key to solving the mental health epidemic. If we placed the same importance on teaching our kids empathy, as we do numeracy, the world would be a much better place.
— Professor Green

“Fight or Flight now means our connection with our phone or social media, we need to teach these kids coping mechanisms. The internet is producing whole new types of mental health challenges, new kinds of anxiety and depression.”

“I get scared sometimes when I check my phone usage, it’s crazy… I get my friends to check and we can’t believe how much we’ve used our phones in a week. I need a detox. There’s a really hostile environment online, we shouldn’t have access to that number of people, it’s like a firing range sometimes.”


One audience asked him, with his qualities of “transparency, trust, passion, with a social conscience, would he ever consider a career in politics?”

He answered “I hate politicians”….  So that wasn’t a No. “The scrutiny would be terrifying” he added, “I just want to make rap music”

So the message is, VOTE GREEN (This was a joke from the brilliant presenter Max Porter), but I actually think many of us would.

Professor Green's book, "Lucky" is available now.


YOGADOO partners with Bath Spa University to create mindfulness films for students


YOGADOO is delighted to have launched a partnership with Bath Spa University to create yoga and mindfulness films to help students to relax and cope with potential exam pressure.

The videos – which are also available to current students and staff – are being sent to all applicants offering guidance on well-being and mindfulness, and have been created with local Bath company, YOGADOO and feature founder, Lucy Aston.

Available on the University’s YouTube channel, each episode covers a different topic, including how to relax, concentrate, release tension and sleep better, with their release timed to coincide with national Mental Health Awareness Week (14-20 May).

Sara Gallagher, Head of Student Support at Bath Spa, said: “Helping students – even before they join us - to develop skills they can use to reduce stress is a real priority for us, and these easy to follow guides support that aim. We offer a wide range of support to students, including professional advice and guidance to ensure they get the most out of studying, and their student experience in general.”

As well as advising on the videos, YOGADOO teachers are running a series of yoga and meditation  sessions for the University’s Students’ Union, as part of its 'Stamp Out Stress Week during Mental Health Awareness week.

“Exam time can be such a stressful period for students, whatever level of study they are at,” said Lucy Aston, Founder of YOGADOO, who work with over 50 schools across Bath and Bristol, delivering yoga and mindfulness sessions to children of all ages.

“We wanted to help those who have applied to Bath Spa develop techniques that will help them feel confident and in control as they approach their exams. The great thing about many mindfulness practices is that they are so simple and easy to do, and can really help in all sorts of different situations.”

YOGADOO Founder Lucy Aston will be running "drop in" yoga and meditation sessions, and giving away free Pukka tea to students on the Newton Park campus (Behind the main house) on Wednesday morning.


Yoga sessions: 10am-11am and  12pm-1pm 

Meditation sessions: 11:15am-11:45am and 1:15pm-1:45pm

MHAW BLOG: Why we shouldn’t shield our children from stress


Why diarised stress is crucial for our young people
by YOGADOO Founder, Lucy Aston

This week is Mental Health Awareness week, and the theme for this year’s campaign is STRESS.  Goodness me, I’ve suffered from the effects of stress in my time. I would even say I reached burn-out point a few years ago with a combination of things going on in my life at that time. I know all too well that feeling of a dark cloud above you from the moment you wake up, the sensation of “walking through treacle” to try and get even the smallest tasks done and just the overwhelming emotion of failing, all the time.


Yoga, and more specifically meditation saved me, it really did. Deciding to pack myself off to India to retrain as a yoga and meditation teacher two years ago, although I didn’t appreciate it at the time, was about to completely change my life. And completely change how I viewed my own mental health, self-care, and ultimately my relationship with stress.


I was always a bit of a stress junkie you might say, I trained as a BBC journalist and I thrive on short deadlines. This transfers to all areas of my life, I very often self-impose tight deadlines on myself to give myself “the buzz” of getting things done. But this brings with it, stress. And what I’ve realised is it isn’t just stressful for me, it was having an impact on colleagues, friends and family who were waiting for information or work from me and in it would fly just on the right side of the deadline. “Yes, I’ve still got it”.


I still have a bit of this in me, I think I always will. But I am aware of it now. I’ve also realised that there is enough stress in life, without me feeling the need to add more.


The way I deal with stress now has also changed. I used to let it build up, ignoring it, the eternal tidal wave of burden constantly biting at my heels. I used to let it chase me, occasionally turning around and bashing it on the head with a virtual comedic frying pan, but it was always there like a terrier puppy, keen to get my attention. Eventually it would build to the point where the wave would swallow me whole, and I would drown in a sorry mess, only for my loved ones to pick me back up and start me on the same path once again.


Now, I see stress as (a necessary) part of life, it’s not something to be ashamed of, I deal with it in the same way as I need to eat. I have learnt to prioritise, to cut unnecessary stresses from my life, write lists, reflect and not rush. I also meditate every day, even if it is only for five minutes – but I try to do twenty. This might sound like a complete luxury, but I absolutely promise you I much more efficient for the rest of the day when I do this. Of course, it takes time and energy and practice to meditate, but for me it’s the simple sensation of stillness when faced with chaos. Forcing the calm, controlling the breath, being in the moment when all your brain wants to do is run away with you. Nature gave us the ability to spot danger and respond to it. When faced with dangerous or stressful situations, our body and brain kicks into “fight or flight” mode. But we don’t like to stay in that state for long. We like to deal with danger quickly so we can feel safe again. But if we are shielded from danger or stress, we don't learn how to deal with it.


I am going to talk more about meditation techniques later in the week, and I’ll also be announcing a brand new meditation course I’ll be running which will start later this month.


Ironically, as well as this week being Mental Health Awareness week, thousands of children will also be taking their SATs. Over the past few months, YOGADOO teachers have been working with a number of primary schools in the Bath and Somerset area to work with year 6 pupils specifically to prepare them for these tests. I’ve also worked with some children one-to-one privately to teach and develop resilience skills in coping with stressful situations. I have said to all of these children, teachers and parents, that we are not looking at the SATs in isolation. Life will throw at us a series of potentially stressful events, situations and phases and the yoga and meditation we learn will equip them for life.


Sometimes these are minor, temporary pressures where we feel a bit unsettled but can carry on with life as normal, sometimes these will develop into serious and traumatic times where we find it really difficult to function. What yoga and meditation teaches us is to notice how we are feeling in the present moment, to recognise our emotions, to listen to our bodies and to respond. We also teach that it is OK to ask for help. It is always OK. We all need to do this from time to time, and there is always someone to speak to. Talking helps and there’s always a way to sort out whatever the situation might be.


I have heard a lot of talk amongst parents and in the media about how the SATs are “unnecessary stress” for the children.


I agree that building the SATs to be something they are not is unnecessary, and they should be viewed with a sense of perspective and nothing more. But I actually believe some “planned” stress for children is good, and further than that, it’s essential. At least with “diarised” stressful encounters, we can prepare the child and teach them valuable coping mechanisms and skills. How else will we prepare them for life? And the pressures and stresses ahead? Prolonged periods of stress is of course, no good for anyone, but I really think that learning to deal with stress is a good thing, it helps children to gain confidence, experience problem solving and build resilience. 


So how do we help children cope with stress and prepare for stressful situations?

Here are my top ten ways we can help:


Create a calm environment

Try to be an organised parent or carer, have everything you need and leave enough time to get to places, particularly on the morning of exams. Don’t create any unnecessary chaos.


Get enough sleep

Children who sleep well are likely to be less irritable and better able to handle school stress.  If they have things on their mind at bedtime, help them to write a list, and tell them we will work through the list together to resolve their worries.



Keep talking to your child, but also know when to stop. Let them know you are on their team, you can help them resolve any worries by working together, but be aware of the “white noise” effect that constantly asking them if they are OK can also have.


Practice relaxation

Sitting or lying still with our eyes closed, and focussing on taking slow deep breaths can really help to calm the mind and body. With the emphasis on stillness, trying not to fidget, maybe placing a hand or toy on the child’s belly so they can tap in deeper to the sensation of the breath coming and going. Counting the breath in and trying to match the length of the breath out.


Leaving little positive notes of encouragement for your child to find is a really sweet way to help relieve stress. Popping a little affirmation in their pencil case, next to their bed or lunchbox can pepper their day with reminders that you are there with them, even when you’re not physically there.


Be less busy

Do they really need to go to that after school club? Do that extra swimming session? When a child is experiencing extra stress, cutting out any unnecessary activities and replacing it with bonding time with you can really help to make them feel better.



It sounds simple, but remembering to eat well and drink lots of water is essential. Cooking can be a therapeutic activity, so why not get your child involved in the design of the week’s meal plan over the exam period, not only are they learning about how important food is to help our brain function more effectively, they will no doubt include some of their favourite foods (which is always a nice treat) and it’s also a really great bonding time together.


Leading by example

Stress is a part of life, as a parent if you can find age appropriate ways to talk about how you feel, how you sometimes feel stressed, about how sometimes things worry you, this will become part of a normal conversation you have with your child. You can also lead by example in how you manage your stress, let your child see you writing lists, enjoying ‘self care’ and relaxation time, practicing yoga and meditation, you may even want to try some of the activities together.


Limit screen time

Using digital devices, and (if the child is old enough) accessing social media can lead to a child feeling isolated and more anxious. Limiting the time on screens during stressful periods can be useful and replace it with activities you can enjoy together. Being away from screens can also be cause of anxiety and stress to helping your child to become more digitally resilient is really important too.


Professional help

If your child is experiencing prolonged periods of stress and anxiety, it is really important to speak to the school, and if necessary your GP. Never be afraid of asking for help, there is always a way to resolve the problem, and people are on your side.

We're a FINALIST in the MUDDY STILETTO awards!


THANK YOU so much! We are  a FINALIST as BEST YOGA STUDIO in the Muddy Stiletto awards If you like what YOGADOO does, then Voting is live NOW here until 5.30 pm on Friday 18 May.
Anyone can vote in the Awards (you don't have to live here).  And Voting starts from zero - nominations from the first round are not carried forward, as it is now a 5-way competition between 5 Finalists, so even if you voted for us before, please can you vote again (so sorry to ask!).

So if you like what we do, please vote for us here - Thank you so much.

MHAW BLOG: Why the emphasis should be on AWARENESS in Mental Health Awareness week


By founder of YOGADOO, Lucy Aston

Since YOGADOO was launched two years ago, I’ve noticed a definite increase in the conversation around children’s mental health, and rightly so. Growing up in rural West Somerset, I think I can remember a handful of conversations around mental health issues amongst my peers and my family during my childhood. At school, anxiety was all too often written off as nerves. Depression or stress written off as “having a bad day.”


Over the past decade there has been an increase in the level of knowledge and awareness and a certain reduction in the stigmatisation of mental health issues.  There is also an acknowledgement that we all HAVE a mental health, which can fluctuate from day to day, week to week, year to year in much the same way as our physical health can.


I think we are a long way off talking about mental health issues in exactly the same way as physical ailments, but it is certainly moving in the right direction.  Certainly, in a generation, some of the stigma surrounding Mental Health has been lifted enabling us to talk more openly about how we feel. I cannot imagine my parents and their friends standing at a bar, or talking over a coffee in a café about their mental health in the way that I do with my friends.


To kick off Mental Health Awareness week, we thought we would start by looking at the state of the Mental Health of our nation’s children. The statistics which we have pulled together whilst they are widely reported, are nevertheless alarming. Half of mental health problems are established by the time a child is 14 years old, and it’s thought 10% of children now have a diagnosable mental illness, many more are suffering from mental health challenges. And the wait for treatment and resources to help these young people are being stripped and cut all the time, with some young people waiting a decade for appropriate treatment.


New figures released today show that there has been a sharp rise in the number of children under 11 referred for mental health treatment by schools in the last four years.


So here we go with our snapshot of the state of the Mental Health of our nation’s children (pulled from a wide range of resources and sources)



The World Health Organisation describes mental health as ‘a state of well-being in which the individual realises his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.’ 



  • 20% of adolescents may experience a mental health problem in any given year.
  • 50% of mental health problems are established by age 14 and 75% by age 24.
  • 10% of children and young people (aged 5-16 years) have a clinically diagnosable mental problem
  •  70% of children and adolescents who experience mental health problems have not had appropriate interventions at a sufficiently early age.


Three in four mental illnesses start in childhood. 75% of mental illnesses start before a child reaches their 18th birthday, while 50% of mental health problems in adult life (excluding dementia) take root before the age of 15.


10% of school children have a diagnosable mental illness. So, in an average class of 30 young people, three will have a mental health problem. Figures show 10% of children aged 5-16 have been diagnosed with a mental health problem.


The number of referrals by schools in England seeking mental health treatment for pupils has risen by more than a third in the last three years, according to recent figures obtained by the NSPCC. More than half (55%) of referrals over the four-year period came from primary schools.


In almost a third of all referrals, the child in question was denied specialist CAMHS (Child and Adult Mental Health Services) treatment. While, in some cases it might not have been necessary, the NSPCC believes under-resourcing is also a factor.


Alana Ryan, the NSPCC policy officer, said: “It is worrying there are so many children being deemed as needing some kind of mental health support and whether or not that is mental health support that meets the clinical support threshold, it’s still a need.” She said even where referrals were accepted, waiting times were often long.


The NSPCC’s Childline service has reported a 26% increase in the number of counselling sessions with children about mental health issues over the past four years, with some saying they only received specialist support when they reach crisis point.


The government is due to invest an additional £300m to provide quicker support to children. “We know we need to do more which is why we have extended our schools and NHS link pilot to deliver training in 20 more areas of the country this year,” he said. “This will improve links between up to 1,200 schools and their local specialist mental health service.”



75% of young people with a mental health problem are not receiving treatment There’s been a rise in the time children are having to wait to receive treatment for complex mental health conditions, and children with depression and anxiety are often not being identified or given help.


The average wait for effective treatment is 10 years. It can take a decade for many young people to receive help after showing first symptoms. Opportunities to help are often missed until they reach “crisis”, causing children to self-harm, become suicidal, be violent and aggressive or drop out of school.



More than half of young people link mental illness with alienation and isolation 56% believe that anyone their age diagnosed with a mental illness would be treated differently, and 55% believe they would lose friends.51% of young people believe that anyone their age diagnosed with a mental illness would be embarrassed.


The findings from a YouGov/MQ survey also show a high level of mental health problems in students, as more than a quarter (27%) report having a mental health problem of one type or another. Female students are more likely to say they have mental health problems than males (34% v 19%).



Just 6% of UK health research spending goes on mental health. This is despite mental health disorders such as anxiety, depression, phobias and post-traumatic stress disorder affecting one in four of the population.


For every person affected by mental illness, £8 is spent on research – 22 times less than cancer and 14 times less than dementia


UK funding for mental illness research equates to £8 per person, according to research from mental health research charity MQ, compared with £178 per person for cancer and £110 for dementia.


Less than 30% of mental health research is focused on young people. Only £26m a year is earmarked for children and young people’s studies, despite 75% of mental illness starting before the age of 18. The lack of investment in children’s mental health means that very little is known about the cause of mental illness, and which treatments are most effective.


Although these statistics might seem alarming, it is important to remember that levels of awareness and diagnosis has increased in recent years which has impacted on the figures. What’s also crucial to discuss is that an awareness of our own, and our children’s mental health does not always mean we have a medical diagnosis or “condition”. Simply understanding more about our own bodies and our mind can lead to a better level of self-care and quality of life.


The theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness week is “Stress” and many of our children are sitting exams over the coming weeks and months, known to be a particularly stressful time. But when I meet with the hundreds of children YOGADOO works with each month, although they mention “exams” and “School work” as a cause of stress, the main reasons they are anxious or worried is linked to friendship groups, social media or family pressures.


Over the next seven days we will be posting advice and comment on the Mental Health conversation, particularly concerning young people. We will delve deeper into what can be done, and how yoga and meditation can help us increase our resilience in a modern world.


If you, or someone you know needs to talk to somebody about mental health issues, the Samaritans can be contacted on 116 123 (six digits).



Busy weekend ahead for YOGADOO yogis!


It's a busy weekend ahead for YOGAOO yogis, with FOUR fabulous events for you.

For families we have a FAMILY YOGA session on Saturday morning and Saturday afternoon, where grown ups have a blissful hour to themselves enjoying a gentle Vinyasa Flow session whilst children have a fun hour of yoga, games and enjoy a mindful art activity. Then we all come back together for an hour of yoga and relaxation together, finishing it all off with a lovely cuppa. Spaces available for both sessions. 

If you fancy some 'me time' we have our 'Clear the Cobwebs' retreat on Saturday at the Apthorp Centre in Bath. A perfect combination of yoga, essential oils, meditation, a delicious and nutritious vegan lunch, and relaxation. Run by incredible Bath Forrest yoga teacher Bex Bridgford and founder of YOGADOO Lucy Aston. A few places remaining.

And on Sunday, we have a VERY SPECIAL event, where children have the opportunity to do yoga with SHARKS, a wonderful yoga class to celebrate Earth Day at Bristol Aquarium 9:10am-10am. A few spaces available.

Booking links:

Family Yoga
Sat am
Sat pm

Clear the cobwebs mini retreat at the Apthorp centre:

YOGA at the Aquarium!

Brand new mini retreat to help you clear away the cobwebs ready for Spring!



Book here: We are delighted to announce a brand new day retreat to help clear the cobwebs and prepare yourself for Spring joy on Saturday April 21st at the Apthorp Centre in Weston, Bath.

Forrest yoga retreat day - Put a spring in your step and nourish your body from the inside out! This event is run by Forrest yoga teacher, Bex Bridgford and YOGADOO's Lucy Aston.

Our retreat day starts with a welcoming drink of raw cacao and an introduction to doTerra oils from the oil bar. This is followed, In true Forrest yoga style, by a two hour practice which is designed to ignite your core, connect you into your pelvis and open your hips. 

Our workshop will bring vibrancy and energy into the body and remove any dullness and tightness created by everyday issues. Inspired by the phrase ‘the hips are the junk draws of the body’, so we'll use lots of exciting breath techniques as our duster and learn arm balances to literally put a spring in your step. The session will be tailored for all levels, to accommodate where you are in your practice.

A delicious healthy vegan lunch will be served, during which Bex will be demonstrating how to make a raw chocolate summer cake and all recipes are vegan, gluten free and free from refined sugar. After lunch we will enjoy a taster of raw chocolates and Bex will give a brief talk on how we can incorporate essential oils into cooking and chocolates.

After lunch, our afternoon session we will be having some fun with partner yoga poses with Bex Bridgford and YOGADOO's Lucy Aston.

And our retreat will end with a 'Clear the Cobwebs' themed meditation session, guided by Lucy.

This wonderful event will take place in the beautiful gardens of the Apthorp centre in Weston village in Bath. (weather permitting, or indoors at the Apthorp centre if necessary)

💫Timetable for the day 💫
11.30 - Welcome, we will enjoy raw cacao shot (the ultimate hot chocolate), and Bex will be demonstrating the benefits of essential doTerra oils and how these can compliment and support our practice.

11.45-1.45 Forrest yoga practice (no experience necessary)

2.00-3.30 Lunch, cake demonstration and we'll be making raw chocolates

3.45-4.45 Partner yoga session and guided mediation

4.45-5.00 A selection of Pukka herbal teas to say goodbye 💕

Tickets are £95 (EARLY BIRD rate is £90 until 10 April) which includes a Goodie-bag of self care treats and recipes. Places are strictly limited. Please call Bex on 07966434801 with any questions.

Book here:

COMPETITION: Win tickets to Big Fish Little Fish family rave in Bath!


ITTTT'S COMPETITION TIME! Next Sunday, 15th April our friends at Big Fish Little Fish are taking residence at Komedia Bath and they have VERY KINDLY given YOGADOO a Family ticket to give away (for 2 adults and 2 children). In case you haven't heard of Big Fish Little Fish, they are the finest purveyors of quality raves for all the family. Enlisting big name DJs that mums and dads love from days of yore and mixing them up with fabulous fun and games for all the family, they’re our kind of party people.

Big Fish Little Fish family ravers and their shipmates bring acid house, techno, house, hip hop, drum ''n' bass for families with 0-8 year olds as part of the 'Around the World in 18 Raves' Camp Bestival warm up tour. Avast ye land lubbers and dance together on a dance floor filled with bubbles, balloons, glitter and topped by the parachute dance! Get nautically crafty on the craft tables and enjoy a bit of sea leave in the baby chill out or play areas. Chance to win a family ticket to Camp Bestival and have fun with their photo booth. Licensed bar for the odd tot of rum.

Head over to the YOGADOO Facebook page for more information and to enter the competition before the closing date on Tuesday 10th April at 8pm

In case you'd like to come along, it's going to be brilliant! You can book your tickets here.

Headline DJ rave legends 2 Bad Mice, plus residents Little My & High Eight play (grown up) dance music on the multi-sensory dancefloor with glitter cannons, bubbles, balloons and giant parachute dance.

Craft tables (run by Louise from The Creation Station) and giant colouring mural, themed crafts and playdoh table. Play area with tents and tunnels and baby chillout space with mats and small ballpool. Licensed bar, free transfer tattoos, and glowsticks.

Theme: "Sailing The Seven Seas" - Optional (but encouraged) fancy dress. All things nautical - whatever floats your boat!

Big Fish Little Fish events are for families with younger children (8 years and under) though older siblings are welcome. Parents remain responsible for their children at all times. The event is standing/dancing with limited seating. It will be busy with several hundred people and in low lighting (no strobes) conditions. The licensed bar will be open but no glass will be allowed in the event.

Adults are not admitted unless accompanied by a child. A max of 3 children per adult. A max of 4 adults per child (and such groups must be pre-approved by emailing before buying tickets). Tickets are non-refundable but if anybody with tickets finds they cannot attend a sold-out event please email and BFLF will attempt to put you in touch with people seeking to buy tickets. Each member of your group must have a ticket, adults £8.00, child £8.00 and pre-walking infants free (but must be ticketed). More on the door (if available).

Each event is stewarded and risk assessed in advance. Buggies must be left in buggy park and will not be allowed on the dance floor.

YOGADOO teams up with Bristol Aquarium for very special children's yoga class



There is something beautifully enchanting, calming and meditative about watching fish swim through the ocean. We are delighted to announce that award-winning children's yoga company YOGADOO is teaming up with Bristol Aquarium for a very special children's yoga class with a difference. 

To celebrate Earth Day on Sunday April 22nd, specialist children's yoga teacher and founder of YOGADOO, Lucy Aston will be running a peaceful and calming class in front of a large tropical marine display with floor to ceiling windows at the aquarium. Children will learn fish and ocean inspired yoga poses as they watch Unicorn Tangs, Oriental Sweetlips, Honeycomb Moray Eels, Long Horned Cowfish, Bamboo Banded Cat Sharks,  and a Californian Leopard Shark swim before their very eyes. Children will also be led into gentle relaxation, learning some simple breathing techniques as we appreciate the wonders of the ocean on our planet.

Spaces are limited to 12 children.

Book/more info here:

Arrival at aquarium reception 9:10am, class begins at 9:15am-10am.

Ticket price includes full admission to the Aquarium after the class. No experience of yoga is required.

All mats and equipment is provided. Please wear comfortable clothes that children can move in easily. Teachers are fully insured, first aid trained and DBS compliant.

Parents are welcome to wait in the cafe area at the aquarium, or come back to the cafe for 10am to collect children after class. Parents will need to book a normal admission ticket if they wish to enter the Aquarium after the yoga class.

Ticket price (aged 5-12) £16 (which includes entry to the Aquarium after class).
Bristol Aquarium Members £6*

(Please note that any disabled visitors pay will need to purchase a ticket above and if required will gain entry for a free carer).

*Members will need to verify their valid membership on arrival 

Following this incredibly unique and immersive yoga session, you are welcome to enjoy the rest of the Aquarium. Your Aquarium ticket will be valid all day until closing at 5pm so you can come and go as many times as you like to make the most of this marine inspired experience. For more information about what there is to see at Bristol Aquarium please see the following website: or call the Aquarium team on 0117 929 8929.

YOGADOO founder Lucy Aston said: "I really can't think of a more perfect place to have a children's yoga class. To be inspired and energised by our beautiful ocean, to watch the fish swimming and playing in the clear waters has an almost meditative affect. Our first ever yoga class at the Aquarium is to celebrate Earth Day, and our children are increasingly aware of the affects of their actions on our planet, especially with programmes such as David Attenborough's Blue Planet. Children will learn lots of fish-themed yoga poses, to stretch and balance their bodies. And work together in some group work as well as enjoying lots of calm, relaxation time as we take lots of deep breaths and watch the fish play."

Address: Bristol Aquarium, Anchor Rd, Bristol BS1 5TT

*YOGADOO - Winner of Best Health Business - Bath Life Awards 2017


YOGADOO Founder to visit India to teach yoga to children


YOGAOO's Lucy Aston will fly to India later this week for a number of exciting projects.

Lucy, who completed her adult's yoga qualification in India two years ago is set to return to the same area in Goa for a fortnight of additional training and to run children's yoga sessions for the local community.

"I fell in love with India when I visited two years ago, and I have been desperate to go back ever since. To teach yoga to children in the country where yoga all began will be an incredible opportunity. The YOGADOO approach is to teach yoga to children in a fun, engaging, non-spiritual way, without any of the Sanskrit terminology or traditional names for poses, so it should be really interesting."

"Whilst I am there I am also going to complete additional meditation and yoga training, and I'll be researching for a couple of projects - more on which will be revealed later in the year. I am also hoping to learn more about Ayurveda which is traditional complementary or alternative medicines. And I am really looking forward to being a pupil myself again for a while! I will spend lots of time practicing yoga."

Follow Lucy's adventures on social media on Instagram: @Lucy_yogadoo or @yogadoo

For information about the YOGADOO class timetable over the Easter Holidays click here.


YOGADOO Easter Holiday class times and sessions


Despite the chilly weather, Spring and the Easter school holidays are just around the corner! There are some changes, and additions to the YOGADOO timetable so please take a look below.

Adult's classes (Book here)
Friday 23rd March  - BROGADOO - Trish Fairbeard cover for Lucy
Monday 26th March - No Morning class. 6:30pm YOGA FLOW - Trish Fairbeard cover for Lucy
Wednesday 28th March - No RUNNERS YOGA
Good Friday - NO BROGADOO
Easter Monday - NO YOGA CLASSES
Wednesday 4th April - No RUNNERS YOGA
Friday 6th April - BROGADOO back - with Lucy

Children's classes (Book here)
Monday 26th March -  Outdoor Art themed - Ty
Tuesday 27th March - SOLD OUT
Wednesday 28th March -  Mini Beasts and Bugs - Emma
Thursday 29th March - Supertato Fruit and Vegetable - Ty
Easter Monday - NO HOLIDAY CLUBS
Tuesday 3rd April - Around the World - Alice
Wednesday 4th April-  Power of Nature - Alice
Thursday 5th April - Life amongst the plants - Emma
Friday 6th April - Nature Detectives - Emma



We are so excited to announce the RETURN of the YOGADOO Yoga Barn, and this year we are thrilled to take residence at our new home at Bath City Farm, right in the heart of Bath! It will be even better than before, with award-winning specialist children's yoga teachers running events from after Easter and on into the summer.

We are starting with pre-school sessions running twice weekly on a Wednesday and a Thursday, but other exciting events are planned for adults and children - watch this space! 

We start with sessions every Wednesday & Thursday for pre-school aged children & parents or carers, from 18th April for six weeks (£6 per session, bookable in a 6-week blockeach week has a different theme connected to life on the farm. All sessions last 1 hour and have a maximum of 6 spaces.

10am-11am  2 -3 year olds & their parents and carers

11am-Noon  3 - 5 year olds & their parents and carers

Book Wednesdays here and Thursdays here.

Children will practice yoga poses and enjoy some all important relaxation time, listening to the sounds of the farm, breathing some wonderful fresh air, as well as learning more about their environment and farm life. 

Each session will be led by a fully trained YOGADOO yoga teacher. All teachers are DBS checked and fully insured. YOGADOO teaches hundreds of children every single week in the Bath and Bristol area.

Bath City farm is a non-profit organisation situated on a beautiful 37-acre plot in Bath, with a play park, animals, walking trails, farm shop and cafe. At the YOGADOO Yoga Barn @ Bath City Farm Club, children can practice yoga and relax, whilst learning more about life on the farm.

Address: YOGADOO Yoga Barn, (next to the café) Bath City Farm, Kelston View, Whiteway, Bath BA2 1NW.

Getting there

*YOGADOO - Winner of Best Health Business - Bath Life Awards 2017

COMPETITON: Win a pair of tickets to the final Hygge Yoga mini retreat


Sit back, get cosy up under a blanket, light a candle, boil up a scrummy hot chocolate and get ready to HYGGE.

We are so excited to announce our competition to win TWO tickets to this Sunday's sold out FINAL HYGGE YOGA mini retreat of the winter at Combe Grove Hotel, just outside of Bath.

Simply head to our Facebook page or Instagram channel for your chance to win this very special price worth £130! There are four steps to enter:

1) Like our Facebook page/Follow us on Instagram.

2) Like our competition post.

3) Share our post (Facebook)

4) Comment below the post with your FAVOURITE thing about Hygge, is it the candles, the walks in the crisp fresh air, is it the comfort food, is it the cosy blankets or real wood fires? Or maybe your have another suggestion.

And wait.... The competition closes 6pm on Friday. The winner (from a combined entry of Facebook and Instagram entries) will be announced at 8pm on Friday. We will also give away FIVE pairs of Hygge Yoga leg warmers to five runners up.

One winner will be picked at random, YOGADOO teachers and their families are not eligible to enter.

No cash alternative or transfer will be offered, the winner must be able to attend this Sunday 18th March.

Only one entry per person. The winner may transfer the prize to another person and their guest.





Easter YOGADOO Holiday Clubs announced

 YOGADOO is running Easter Holiday Clubs at our usual home, Weston Methodist Church in Bath. We are running clubs every single day (apart from the Bank Holidays) and our first date has just SOLD OUT on Tuesday 27th March.  Each day focussing on a different element of nature and our planet as we celebrate the arrival of warmer weather, new life and our natural surroundings changing with the seasons.   Our wonderful teachers Ty Newton, Alice Denning and Emma Reynolds are running the holiday clubs and every day is totally different with yoga, relaxation, games, fun and arts and crafts.  You can find out more information and can book here:

YOGADOO is running Easter Holiday Clubs at our usual home, Weston Methodist Church in Bath. We are running clubs every single day (apart from the Bank Holidays) and our first date has just SOLD OUT on Tuesday 27th March.

Each day focussing on a different element of nature and our planet as we celebrate the arrival of warmer weather, new life and our natural surroundings changing with the seasons. 

Our wonderful teachers Ty Newton, Alice Denning and Emma Reynolds are running the holiday clubs and every day is totally different with yoga, relaxation, games, fun and arts and crafts.

You can find out more information and can book here: