Mindfulness and Compassion for Health - One Day Masterclass with Vidyamala Burch

Friday 29 September 2017, 9:30am - 4:00pm



In this experiential workshop, Breathworks Co-founder Vidyamala Burch will introduce the main elements of Breathworks mindfulness-based approaches to managing pain, illness and stress.

The day is suitable for people wishing to learn to live with their own health problems, pain, stress, or anxiety, as well as Health Professionals, carers, and others who wish to incorporate mindfulness and compassion into their work. Mindfulness teachers and practitioners are also welcome to use this as a CPD opportunity in order to look at different ways to deliver mindfulness (Certificate of attendance with 6 hours CPD will be available on request).

Mindfulness for Health Book and Award Image

What Will Be Taught?

Over the day you’ll be introduced to mindfulness and compassion practices as well as learning about some of the distinctive Breathworks elements such as the importance of a very systematic approach to mindfulness in daily life and breath-based mindful movement.

Vidyamala will outline the core theory of the Breathworks approach: learning to distinguish between primary suffering or experience (the basic unpleasant sensations in the body) and secondary suffering (the myriad of ways we react to primary suffering mentally, emotionally and physically).

Vidyamala will suggest that the fundamental cause of secondary suffering is resistance to unpleasant experience; and that using mindfulness to soften resistance is one of the key ways to accept primary suffering/experience and reduce and/or overcome secondary suffering. Vidyamala will also introduce the Breathworks 6-step model of mindfulness:

  1. Awareness
  2. Turning towards the unpleasant
  3. Seeking out the pleasant
  4. Broadening perspective
  5. Connecting with others
  6. Living with choice

What's Included

As well as the masterclass content delivered throughout the day, lunch and refreshments are also included in the price.  Certificate of attendance with 6 hours CPD will be available on request.


St Michael's Hospice Hereford
Frome Park



£120, including lunch and refreshments.
There are a limited number of concessionary places at £60, which are available to people in financial hardship. As a guide we suggest this applies to people with an income of £15,000 per year or less.


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Breathworks Social Value



For every £1 invested in a Breathworks course there were wider savings to the public purse of at least £5.76 in reduced costs to public services, including reduced A&E visits, reduced GP visits and reduced use of medication.

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Vidyamala Burch 

Vidyamala Pic

After injuring her spine and having surgeries in her teens, Vidyamala discovered meditation when she was twenty-five, when she was taught a visualization exercise by a hospital chaplain. This stimulated a great curiosity about the power of the mind and heart as a tool she could harness to help her rehabilitate herself and create a rich and fulfilling life despite on-going pain and disability. She has spent the next thirty years following this deep curiosity; and mindfulness and compassion - or kindly awareness - have emerged as central to this quest. She moved from NZ to the UK in 1990 and spent five years living in a Buddhist retreat centre gaining intensive experience of mindfulness and meditation.

After settling in Manchester, in 2000 she received a grant from the Millennium Commission to develop mindfulness-based courses for others living with pain and illness. This formed the basis for Breathworks, established as a Community Interest Company in 2004. There are now over 336 Breathworks’ trainers in over 24 countries.

Vidyamala has written three books: “Living well with Pain and Illness – the mindful way to free yourself from suffering”; “Mindfulness for Health – a practical guide to relieving pain, reducing stress and restoring well-being” which won First Prize in the BMA Book awards in 2915; and “Mindfulness for Women – De-clutter your mind, simplify your life and find time to ‘be’.
Vidyamala trains regularly in the UK, Germany, Australia and New Zealand.