Our Diversity & Inclusion program is something we are very passionate about here at Trauma-Sensitive Yoga Nederland (TSYN). We believe that the practice of Trauma-Sensitive Yoga (TSY) must become available to anyone that might need it, regardless of race, class, gender identity, sexual orientation, financial and physical ability.


We are working hard to establish accessibility for everyone, so we make sure we keep brainstorming and creating innovative ideas to make this program become as widely known as possible. TSYN would like to share the insight we gained from our conversation recently with Pyrrha Singerling on a Monday afternoon over Zoom.


Pyrrha is one of Trauma Center Trauma-Sensitive Yoga (TCTSY) facilitators, also a Trauma-Sensitive Yoga Nederland (TSYN) facilitator here in the Netherlands and has worked at Blijf Groep for over 15 years.


Blijf Groep is an organisation that helps to stop and prevent domestic violence. There are multiple locations in the Netherlands. Oranje Huis in Amsterdam is one of those locations. Pyrrha teaches Empowerment and Self-Defence training to women, sometimes men and usually in community centres. Research has confirmed that over 70% of the women in the Oranje Huis shelter, experience trauma.


Pyrrha – TCTSY- Facilitator


Pyrrha shared that she came across a book that was to inspire her future work. The book is by David Emerson called Overcoming Trauma Through Yoga: Reclaiming Your Body. She was moved to act and begin her journey on sharing this wonderful modality Trauma-Sensitive Yoga in the The Netherlands.


Certain elements started to resonate with Pyrrha in the book from her work as an Empowerment and Self-Defence trainer. Pyrrha says: “I started reading this book and thought thats exactly what I do! It even uses sentences that I use as well.” She realised the way in which participants are approached who have experienced trauma, the importance of safety and providing a safe environment, to be incredibly close to how she works with her participants.


Pyrrha: “I mentioned to some participants that I came across this book and that I would like to try and practice these exercises together, would they be interested to participate? Some participants turned out to be keen and or curious and they found the practice incredibly helpful.”


In order to deepen her knowledge, Pyrrha contacted Esther van der Sande (who is the founder of Trauma-Sensitive Yoga Nederland (TSYN). Pyrrha followed the foundational TSY training – 20 HR with Esther and soon after the 300hr Certification Program became a TCTSY-facilitator. Since completing the certification program, Pyrrha facilitates weekly TCTSY groups at Oranje Huis Amsterdam, and also online with Trauma-Sensitive Yoga Nederland on a Wednesday evening.


After Pyrrha met Esther, the idea soon came about to set up a TCTSY group in Oranje Huis Amsterdam, working together with the Blijf Groep. Esther and Pyrrha facilitated a 10-week program of trauma-sensitive yoga as part of the organisation’s schedule and offered it completely free of charge to all participants. The women that would attend these trauma-sensitive yoga classes would also take part in a small research project that is soon to be published.


Pyrrha mentioned low fees, or no fees, that were offered from TSYN was crucial to the participants of Blijf Groep”Most people that I work with dont have €17,50 for a yoga lesson, theyre happy if they have enough money to pay for rent and food, and often this isnt even possible.” Pyrrha notes that the people that follow her class, still now, are able to do so due to the fact that it is free of charge.


What was difficult to comprehend that at one stage due to the participant’s personal circumstances they are no longer under the assistance from the Blijf Groep and as a result were no longer receiving the benefits of the Trauma Sensitive Yoga program. Pyrrha mentioned: At some point, they have to move on, and what are the possibilities then for them to continue practising Trauma Sensitive Yoga?”


This is when Pyrrha and Esther came up with the idea to involve yogi’s or anyone from around the world to provide a contribution and to make it possible for anyone that has come in contact with trauma and wants to work on their mental and physical health through practising trauma-sensitive yoga, to be able to do so from these contributions.


The program is a worldwide offer to anyone who can contribute and make a huge difference to someone’ life. Contributions can be as little as 5 euro’s.


The idea was born… developing a crowdfunding platform, so everyone could benefit from practising yoga in a safe way by qualified TCTSY facilitators.


This program builds onto the Diversity and Inclusion Program that TSYN has started and will contribute to the foundation of building awareness for all in Trauma Sensitive Yoga.


As part of this program, Trauma-Sensitive Yoga Nederland offers a number of places for participants to join the online TCTSY lessons are completely free of charge. If you’re interested or want to know more, you can always contact us on these email addresses:


Support: or Esther:


I’d like to thank Pyrrha for speaking about the start of her journey into Trauma-Sensitive Yoga. If you’d like to know more about Pyrrha, or the incredible work that she does, you can find her here: