the teachers

All of our teachers meet the requirements of the Good Practice Guidance for Teaching Mindfulness-Based Courses published by the UK Network of Mindfulness-Based Teacher Trainers. To view these, go to good practice guidelines

Gary Hennessey is one of the founding directors of Breathworks, a Social Enterprise devoted to relieving suffering through mindfulness. (For more information on Breathworks go to breathworks).

He has been practising mindfulness and meditation for over 35 years.  In 2003 he trained in applying mindfulness for people with pain and illness with Vidyamala Burch (author of Living Well with Pain and Illness). Since then Gary has been running mindfulness courses in Manchester for people with pain, illness and stress.

Gary is Director of Training for Breathworks, and regularly trains health professionals and others in mindfulness as a health intervention.


Cate Clark came to a Breathworks ‘Living Well with Pain and Illness’ course on the advice of her GP in 2006.  She was looking for ways to help her to manage her chronic pain and fatigue in a more balanced and sustainable way.  She has practised the mindfulness practices on the Breathworks course ever since.

Having worked as a trainer in industry, the Health Service and in the arts sector, Cate decided in 2007 to qualify as a Breathworks trainer. She now regularly runs mindfulness courses in Manchester for people with chronic pain and illness and finds it very rewarding as she says “I’ve seen it change lives”.  She also works with the Breathworks Training team, teaching NHS staff and others about mindfulness and its role as a health care intervention.


Isobel Dixon has taught relaxation and stress management in community settings for many years and been involved with the Breathworks Living Well Programme since training with the project in 2004.

Isobel lives with a chronic illness (M.E) and has found the material delivered on the Breathworks courses immensely helpful in coping with this and the general challenges of life. As part of her training work with Breathworks she has also delivered a course to M.E patients, provided taster sessions at workplace well-being days and trained a range of  health professionals in mindfulness as a healthcare intervention. Isobel loves working with people and groups and is known for her warmth and enthusiasm.

ColetteColette Power was born and grew up in Liverpool. She runs Breathworks courses in Liverpool, Wales and Hereford. She holds a doctorate from the University of Liverpool and is a qualified Person Centred Counsellor. Colette began meditating in 2006.

“I’d suffered from anxiety and depression from my mid twenties. Meditation, mindfulness and self-compasion techniques profoundly improved my mental, emotional and physical health and the quality of my life. I meditate because I love it and I teach mindfulness because it works.”

Mj Stephens started training with Breathworks in 2007 when heMJ worked at the Manchester Buddhist Centre. He loved the material and could see how everyone could benefit from it. He then moved away from Manchester to train as an Alexander Technique Teacher and qualified in 2010. Upon returning to Manchester he has completed his training with Breathworks.

He has meditated for over 20 years and particularly enjoys the Mindfulness practices as taught by Breathworks. Mj loves working with groups of people, enthusiastically sharing what he has learnt and seeing others benefit.

Sheila Bayliss was introduced to the Breathworks approach when she attended a Mindfulness for Stress course in 2008. She had struggled with stress and anxiety in the past, and was looking for a way to cope better with a demanding job and personal issues. Learning mindfulness completely transformed her response to difficult experiences.Sheila Bayliss photo

A few years later she re-trained as a coach, working with individuals to help them reduce stress, and then also completed the Breathworks teacher training. Sheila is passionate about helping others discover the power of mindfulness and self-compassion.


Andrea Cygler is originally from Manchester but is now based in Liverpool. She is an experienced and well-qualified wellbeing practitioner who has taught and practiced complementary health, therapeutic touch, meditation and relaxation techniques, stress management and resiliency training for 20 years, working with all ages and diversities, all over Merseyside and the North West.

Although smotley!he had tried different forms of meditation over the years it was only after an 8 an 8 week Mindfulness course that her practice become sustainable, enjoyable and truly beneficial. She has trained as a Mindfulness teacher and qualified with Breathworks in 2014 . She has also done some MBSR training with Mindflow and is a qualified Mindfulness in Schools Instructor ( She teaches for Breathworks and also runs her own mindfulness courses and meditation sessions in Liverpool.

She does have a small private practice but her main focus is on group work and community projects and most of her work over the years has been within support services, adult learning services and the school environment.

She is committed to inspiring, enabling and supporting individuals in taking an active and integrative approach to their wellbeing, encouraging a deep understanding of the connection and relationship between body, mind and spirit and a mindfulness- based approach is now at the heart of all her work.