THE PHOENIX Wellness team

Jules Aspinall

As a Level 5 clinical reflexologist, registered with AOR, PR and CNHC, I work with all ages – from newborns to big kids in their eighties. Though I help with all manner of health issues, anxiety, depression and stress are the most common reason people seek my help. The arrival of my youngest anxiety client led to me training in Relaxation Therapy and guided visualisation.

Passionate about helping others to help themselves and the benefits of both reflexology and guided visualisation, the events of the past year motivated me to help on a larger scale.


A former Playbox member and mum of three, I’m looking forward to helping bring inner peace, and with it some inner sunshine, to 2021.

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Maddy Lesser

Maddy has been teaching Meditation since she was 18. She completed her 3 year Teacher Training with The British Wheel of Yoga in 2006 and has been a full time Yoga and Meditation Teacher ever since. She is also qualified to assess trainee Yoga Teachers and trained with BWY and Birthlight to teach Yoga for Pregnancy.

Still a keen student herself, Maddy attends 4/5 classes each week with her teachers Digby Platt and Ben Beswick (leading Ashtanga Yoga Teachers) and also Traditional Therapeutic Yoga with Vettri Selvan.

Maddy co runs Old School Yoga Studio and is the Resident Yoga Teacher at Holycombe Retreat Centre.

She has had the great fortune to study with many wonderful teachers including Hamish Hendry, Shiva Rae, Liz Lark, Joey Miles, Manu Rossi, Francoise Freedman and Peter Sanson.

Maddy teaches a full range of classes from Dynamic Vinyasa to Restorative to Meditation. Her students range from 5 to 95 years of age! She continues to practice and teach with humour, gratitude and great joy.

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Lauren Barrett

Hi, I’m Lauren and I’ve been practising yoga and mindfulness for more than 10 years. I decided to train as a teacher in 2016 and in that same year started working with children, families and adults in a variety of settings. Yoga has so many benefits, but in particular it can help reduce stress levels and help you become more emotionally resilient. Yoga also helps you feel happier and more at ease within yourself. These are just a few of the benefits and through my teaching I aim to share what I have experienced. A typical class involves focusing on the breath and moving in a variety of ways. We will play with balance and have fun making shapes with the body that you wouldn’t normally do in everyday life! This focused movement combined with deep breathing will make our minds and bodies stronger. We always end with a soothing relaxation so bring a blanket, get tucked in and feel nice and cosy!

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Lucy Holtom

Lucy’s a Warwickshire-based Yoga teacher, with nearly 30 years of practice and an abundance of body-mind training from different corners of the world. Along with Hatha Yoga classes for men & women, Lucy is trained to teach: Pre & Post Natal Yoga, Yoga Nidra & Well-Woman Yoga Therapy. Currently training to be a Yoga Therapist, Lucy’s teachings range from sleepy & still to dynamic & playful - her history of being a physical theatre performer influences her creative yoga sequences. Lucy also works closely with Newson Health, supporting the marvellous work of Louise Newson and her colleagues.

Lucy first attended Playbox over 30 years ago and now her daughter Willow attends!

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Aya Jasper

I was born and grew up in Beppu city, Oita, Japan in 1974. There is lots of beautiful landscapes such as  volcanos, waterfalls, mountain, sea and hot springs. It is a very spiritual place that  I adore.

I moved to England with my husband 14 years ago and now have 2 daughters.

I love being a mother and raising my children. I enjoy seeing their growth, energy and endless possibilities. Child development interests me a lot so this is why  I became a childminder and have  looked after over 50 children during the last 10 years. I have thoroughly enjoyed my job and have learned so much about children and their capabilities.

Child development is my passion and  I have been learning about  living a positive life style, childcare coaching and play therapy techniques to develop my interest. I want to support children and families particularly those who struggle with confidence, mental health and other difficulties as well as illness.

I also have realised the importance of parents' well-being as they will be the closest influence and role model for children. I believe encouraging parents towards a positive mental health will be beneficial for both children and their parents. I have developed a holistic approach using Japanese lifestyle ideas to release stress, stay positive and bring confidence in order to maintain self-esteem.

In 2013, my father became ill in Japan and I felt helpless as I was not able to be there for him so I searched the possibilities and was  inspired to learn Reiki. I have being practicing this since then. My father sadly passed away in the Summer of 2017 and I felt down for first 6 month due to being far away from all of my loving family. Again reiki helped me grow from this difficult time and made me think to learn more about it.

Since then I have  learned more about Reiki and completed my master course in 2018. I have used these methods in so many areas of my life and to my children who have received lots of amazing learning opportunities just like law of attraction. This has led me to discover the sheer diversity of Reiki. I would love to share this with as many people as possible to show the power of Reiki and its uses.  

Now more than ever we need to stay positive, strong and look on the bright side.

This is crucial to achieve a positive outcome during the current pandemic. 

I have experienced many difficult situations that have put me under pressure.

Eg. Typhoons, earthquakes, tsunamis, and even the 911 terrorist attack in New York. From these experiences, I have learnt that it is important  that we act positively. 


I think that although this pandemic is devastating it is a learning curve for us all. Reiki has  helped me and my family through this difficult time, so I hope I can support as many people as possible in the same way by using this Reiki method. 

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Sam Lees-Manning 'Professor Mascote'

Capoeira is an Afro-Brazilian community-orientated martial art, performed to live music and song.  It involves many physical, musical and philosophical elements of improvised and semi-structured performance of movement, music & martial art. Mascote has had over 15 years practising the art, since 2001, and over 10 years of professional experience teaching and performing Capoeira, since 2006. Mascote has directed, conducted workshops, and performed in numerous international festivals and arts events worldwide, to great acclaim, and is internationally recognised, having taught and performed all over Europe, and as far away as Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia and, of course, Brazil.


In 2008 Mascote moved to Birmingham and founded his own branch of the Cordao de Ouro Capoeira School, which he called CDOB. He also founded the first International Capoeira Festival Birmingham, in 2010, which aims annually to engage public participation of up to 150 Capoeiristas from across the globe, & has hosted world famous guest master artists such as: Mestre Jogo de Dentro, Mestre Acordeon & Grande Mestre Suassuna.​

In 2014/5, Mascote opened the first “Cordao De Ouro” Capoeira studio/academy in Birmingham, the first of its kind in England, which is dedicated solely to the promotion, distribution, education and performance of Capoeira, the Brazilian music, movement, martial art.

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Izzie James

Isabella James (Izzie) is a theatre practitioner who specializes in facilitation with young people. Storytelling, devising and improvisation are her key specialisms. Izzie has run mindfulness workshops in primary and secondary schools across the UK. These focus on using imagination and creativity as a technique for self-regulation and stress relief. She also trains teachers on how to incorporate mindfulness into their classrooms in a creative way. 

In 2020 she created her own company YoYoJoy, which delivers educational escape rooms in schools. After spending 8 happy years as a Playbox member, she has regularly returned to run acting workshops as part of the team.