About our School.

“We are all here to find ways to express our own unique individual creativity.” Duncan Hulin

The Devon School of Yoga was established in 1989. The School brings together classes, workshops, retreats and training courses under one roof. Our teachers hail from a diverse range of yoga backgrounds, each one bringing something unique to our School’s eclectic approach. Based in Devon, we believe our location and venues offer ideal surroundings for yoga practice, study and contemplation.

The Devon School of Yoga teaches a holistic programme of yoga. As well as coming from a diverse base, its core practices are based on the Dr. Pillai system of Kriyas, Pranayama and Meditation. Its spiritual energy source comes through Swami Sivananda Paramahamsa (of Kerala, India). The Devon School of Yoga is a proud member of Yoga Teachers Together, of which Duncan Hulin and many of the schools tutors are elder members.


“Yoga is an excellent, balanced physical discipline. It is a brilliant psychological tool and philosophy for life. Ultimately, it is a uniquely personal and spiritual practice.”

Duncan Hulin, Founder of the Devon School of Yoga.

About our School. The Devon School of Yoga.

Aims of the
Devon School of Yoga

  • To provide the foundations on which individuals can improve and maintain their physical, mental and spiritual well-being
  • To train individuals to become inspired, competent yoga teachers and to use specific yoga methods as a complementary therapy to help others
  • To increase personal and public awareness of natural ways of living, eating and healing, enabling individuals to assume more responsibility for their own health
Anchor: history

History of the School

“The mental attitude we take towards anything determines to a greater or lesser extent its effect upon us.” – Duncan Hulin

Duncan Hulin founded the Devon School of yoga after the culmination of many years of practice, study and teaching. He started practising yoga in 1976. This led to him travelling on a yoga inspired trip to India for 6 months in 1982/83 where he ended up studying specifically with Dr B.P. Pillai of the Institute for Yogic Culture and Yoga therapy in Trivandrum, Kerala, South India. Dr Pillai was a chela (student) of Swami Sivananda Paramahamsa of Kerala. Duncan started teaching yoga in 1983 after a three month intensive course with Dr Pillai. His ongoing studies and teaching continued from 1983 – 1989, after which he established the East Devon Yoga Centre. Here he developed classes and regular workshops covering all aspects of yoga. This culimintated in the creation of the Devon School of Yoga in 1993.

Anchor: philosophy
About our school

Philosophy of the School

“In our holistic approach, the formal, the practical & the scientific are all vitally important while being balanced with intuition, guided by your own spiritual practice and inner Guru.” – Duncan Hulin.

“Yoga – a way of life” sums up the School’s philosophy. The foundations of the school’s broad-based approach are grounded in the practise of Hatha and Raja-Yoga.

Key points summarising the School’s philosophy are:

  • The ultimate Guru is the Universal Guru within oneself
  • Responsibility for developing health and happiness lies with each individual
  • Many yoga paths are studied so an intuitive & educated choice can be made as to which main path to follow, just as a mountain top can be reached by different routes
  • By purifying our bodies and minds through posture and breath, consciousness can expand to widen our perspective of life. Desire will come naturally to purify our immediate and global environment and to live in harmony with nature and our fellow beings

An ongoing commitment to students.

The School aims to help students develop their practice and runs a variety of Continual Professional Development courses throughout the year, as well as retreats which are a great opportunity for students (past and current) to meet and share new ideas. As an active member of Yoga Teachers Together (YTT), we’re also able to keep students up-to-date with the latest national and international yoga news and current thinking. The school’s regular newsletter has many useful articles and insights into the world of yoga and always welcomes contributions.

Holistic Yoga

Anchor: holistic yoga

The Devon School of Yoga’s (DSY) Holistic approach believes that we are all here to find ways to express our own unique individual creativity.

Through the practice and experience of holistic yoga, a practitioner is able to adapt their practices to suit their unique individual needs. Taking into consideration their current state of health, their energy levels, the length of  time they have to practise and the season etc, as all of these influence the type of practice they undertake. This allows for freedom rather than adhering to dogma.

Holistic means that every part of the individual is intimately interconnected and can only be  fully understood within the context of the whole. Yoga means ‘to join’ or ‘to unify’ and is a method by which the individual is able to establish whole health, clarity, balance and peace. In a holistic yoga practice, all aspects of one’s whole being are nourished and balanced through heightened awareness of the integration of the physical, mental and spiritual aspects of ones being.

We believe that everyone deserves the opportunity to experience happiness and good health. The holistic approach to yoga offers a means by which this is achievable through regular practice, study and self-reflection.  In a holistic yoga practice, as well as learning the asanas (postures), students will also be taught about pranayama (breathing techniques), kriyas (purification exercises), dhyana (meditation), savasana & nidra (deep relaxation) and also yogic philosophy and lifestyle guidance including sattvic (balanced) dietary suggestions.

This approach to yoga is accessible to everyone regardless of age, race, culture, religion, gender, flexibility, fitness or previous yoga experience. The practice is non-competitive and fosters self-awareness, self-reflection, self-reliance and independence which encourages responsibility for developing health and happiness.

Holistic yoga draws inspiration from a range of yoga paths and traditions and students are encouraged to explore a broad spectrum of practices.

Holistic yoga is a way of life that can be experienced by anyone with the intention to experience balance within every aspect of their being, leading to an integrated experience of wholeness and oneness consciousness.

Holistic Yoga

Anchor: our-teachers

Our Teachers

“I have brought together a highly motivated and experienced faculty. I feel this creates a broad and balanced base – a comprehensive source of tools and knowledge for you to become a confident, competent, practical and intuitive holistic yoga teacher.”
Duncan Hulin.

The school’s eclectic mix of teachers bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to enhance students learning.

Duncan Hulin

IYC, YRT, Dip Shiatsu, YTT Registered Elder

Duncan is the principal teacher, founder and director of the Devon School of Yoga. He is a practising yoga teacher and therapist, a Shiatsu practitioner as well as an Ayurvedic foot pressure (Chavutti Thirumal) massage therapist. Duncan healed himself of asthma using yoga therapy and has now been practising yoga for 44 years and teaching for the past 36 years. In the early eighties, he spent three consecutive winters in South India studying with the late Dr. B. P. Pillai, former director of the Indian government recognised Yoga Therapy Foundation, Trivandrum, Kerala. Duncan brings a wealth of experience to his holistic yoga teaching, workshops and courses. He has worked with teenage students with learning difficulties and has led practical stress management programmes in schools. He also teaches weekly classes, including for the MET office. He is a founder member of The Independent Yoga Network and is the director of the Devon Yoga Festival.

Duncan Hulin at Basunti North India Retreat 2022

James Russell

MA, Dip DSY, DipYTH, DipYE, YTT Registered Elder

With seventeen years of teaching experience and more than two decades of personal practice, James is deeply committed to unlocking the transformative potential of yoga. He trained in India, Nepal and the UK. In India, he studied at Yoga Vidya Gurukul (YVG) and in the UK with the Devon School of Yoga (DSY). James has completed two teaching diplomas. He also holds a certificate in Advanced Yoga Studies from YVG and a postgraduate diploma in Yoga Therapy from the DSY. James has trained with senior and respected Yogacharyas, including Srivatsa Ramaswami and Sri Vishwas Mandlik. His principal teacher is Duncan Hulin, with whom he has studied regularly for twenty-three years. James has also studied yoga academically with world-renowned scholars and holds an MA in Traditions of Yoga and Meditation from SOAS, University of Lonon. He is currently completing further studies in Sanskrit at SOAS as an associate student. By drawing upon his extensive personal practice, teaching expertise, and years of dedicated study, James creates transformative and life-changing learning experiences for students.

Alice Chapman

Dip DSY YTH, DipYE, BA, YTT Registered Elder

Alice is a yoga therapist and yoga teacher with a personal interest in pre and post-natal yoga and also yoga for women’s health. She studied and trained in India over the course of several years and has also completed post-graduate training in yoga therapy with the Devon School of Yoga. Alice has been practising Vipassana mediation as taught by S.N. Goenka for the past 14 years. She has been teaching yoga since 2008 and is a teacher trainer for the Devon School of Yoga and also teaches on the school’s postgraduate therapy course.

Alice Chapman.

Barry Kristadas Elms

Barry Kristadas Elms


Barry has over 25 years experience of yoga and chi kung. He is an IYN 1000hr Yoga Register Teacher, specialising in the history and philosophy of yoga, yoga nidra, and kirtan/mantra. He is also a student of Sanskrit and a chi kung instructor. Barry trained with: Devon School of Yoga, Yoga Nidra Network, Yoga Biomedical Trust, Birthlight, Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies, and Tai Chi Nation; he holds an MA in the history and philosophy of yoga from University of Wales Trinity St. David.

Jules Yount

Dip DSY, MM, MMus, BM (Hons), YTT Registered Elder

Jules came to yoga from a background in Martial Arts having trained for over 25 years throughout the UK, Europe, America & Japan. She completed a yoga foundation course with the British Wheel of Yoga and qualified as a yoga teacher with the Devon School of Yoga. She is a Level 1 Acroyoga teacher with Acroyoga.org and also a qualified VanCity Acroyoga teacher. She worked in the Complementary Medicine unit of the Peninsula Medical School for 12 years. She now works in the DSY office as PA to Duncan Hulin.

Keith Bellis

BSc, Dip Shiatsu

Keith teaches Anatomy and philosophy. He first trained in Sports Science and has been working at a Physical Rehabilitation Centre since 1990. As a Shiatsu Therapist he works at The Nuffield Hospital, Exeter where he is keen to bring orthodox and complementary medicine together. He has great enthusiasm for anatomy and is also currently teaching the subject at The Devon School of Shiatsu and Exeter College.

Keith Bellis

Andrea Durant

Andrea Durant

MA Mindfulness

Andrea trained at the Royal Ballet School and danced as principle with major companies. She studied yoga, acupuncture and counselling in the 80’s and ran her own practice in London. She started teaching yoga in 1990, trained with the BWY and ran workshops, retreats, taught children, adults living with HIV and Aids and on the Yoga Campus Teacher Trainings. Her yoga influences have come from Iyengar, Satyananda, Kundalini and Ashtanga. She received a Masters of Science in ‘Psychological Therapies Practice and Research (Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapies and Approaches)’ in 2020, and is presently studying with an organisation connected to the Bihar School of Yoga, Rishikesh.

Helen Humble

Helen Humble

Dip DSY, BSc (Hons), RGN, Dip DN, YTT Registered Elder

Helen teaches yoga and yoga therapy. She has a background of working in the NHS as a district nurse. She is a Shiatsu practitioner and is a qualified teacher of meditation with the Dent Meditation Centre. Helen is currently studying with Birthlight and T-R-E to complement an integrated approach to holistic health.

Andrea Guest- Yoga Teacher

Andrea Guest


Andrea has been practising yoga for over twenty years and qualified with the DSY in 2005. She has experienced a variety of different styles and has an holistic and eclectic approach. Andrea mainly teaches on the schools open residential weekends and retreats. She is also the school’s caterer. You can find some of here recipes here.

Virginia Compton

Dip DSY, DipYTH, Dip Clinical Ayurveda

Virginia Compton is an Ayurvedic practitioner, Yoga Therapist and Devi devotee based between Devon UK and Kerala, India. 
She is passionate about inspiring individuals to take responsibility for their own health and wellness with Ayurveda and Yoga Therapy as well as supporting those living with disease or debilitating conditions. With a past career as a nurse and a constant curiosity about all things Ayurveda and Yoga she brings a unique mixture of east and west to your experience. Training has been completed with DSY as well as Yoga Nidra Network, Yoni Shakti, Norman Blair and Stephen Brandon. Virginia continues to study all aspects of Ayurveda and Yoga with teachers in the UK and India. 


Juliana Hopkins

MBACP (Snr. Accred) Dip DSY

Juliana is a DSY graduate. She currently teaches and practices psychotherapy and has an interest in how yoga and psychotherapy can work together. She finds yoga psychology complements her person-centred approach, enhancing her practice. Juliana has looked for meaning in all her walks of life – through travelling, teaching, psychotherapy and eventually discovering that yoga can be a way of life, not just a discrete hour on the mat.

Juliana Hopkins

Emily Katsuno


Emily is a yoga therapist and trauma informed yoga teacher. She has a special interest in working with trauma and the nervous system through yoga and other somatic practices. Emily has been practising yoga since 2004 and teaching since 2011. She originally trained in India and went on to train with the Devon School of Yoga on their Postgraduate Yoga Therapy Course as well as completing yoga training in yin, pregnancy, women’s health and trauma sensitive and trauma informed yoga. Emily runs a small yoga studio called The Soma Shala in South Devon. .

Ruth Heard


Ruth teaches hatha yoga and specialises in prenatal and postnatal yoga. Ruth also finds a great deal of joy teaching toddler yoga. Ruth is a full spectrum doula and hypnobirthing instructor and is currently on the Devon School of Yoga postgraduate yoga therapy course..

Simon Moore


Simon has practised Yoga with the School for many years and runs weekly classes in Devon, incorporating the School’s main themes and philosophies. He has worked with other Yoga teachers both in the UK and India and is particularly interested in the Advaita Vedanta tradition. Simon has also looked after the Schools visual image for over eighteen years.

Simon Moore

Sally Ornellas

Dip DSY, Dip Occupational Therapist, Dip Shiatsu

Although no longer actively teaching on the courses, Sally remains a valuable advisor and friend to the school. She likewise assists with Yoga Therapy coursework marking. As a yoga teacher and shiatsu practitioner in North Devon, Sally focuses on connections between body, heart and mind. She currently works as a psychological therapist within the NHS, teaching Mindfulness to people with depression.

Sally Ornellas
Mik Burley

Mic Burley

BA, (Essex) MA (Nottingham), PhD, MA (Leeds), PhD Bristol, DipDSY

Mik is the author of “Hatha Yoga: It’s Context, Theory and Practice”. Although no longer actively teaching on the courses, Mik remains a valuable advisor and friend to the school. He is currently Associate Professor of Religion and Philosophy at the University of Leeds.

Janet Kipling

Janet Kipling


Although Janet is no longer actively teaching on the courses, she remains a valuable advisor and friend to the school. Janet first learnt yoga with her mum in Singapore as a child, and started seriously practicing in 2000 with DSY teacher Andrea Durant. She completed her first yoga teacher training in Bali in 2007, her second purely in ashtanga in 2011 and the DSY Postgraduate Yoga Therapy course in 2012. She also completed a Yoga and 12 Step recovery course in 2014. Janet continues to work for the BBC as a presenter and journalist, and to enjoy the grounding and insight that yoga and mindfulness bring to a demanding mainstream job and lifestyle. She is also a qualified Coach and uses these skills to help others gain personal insight and direction.