Master Simon Borg-Olivier MSc BAppSc (Physiotherapy) is a Co-Director of Yoga Synergy, one of Australia's oldest and most respected yoga schools with a style based on a deep understanding of yoga anatomy, yoga physiology and traditional Hatha Yoga. Master Simon is a registered physiotherapist, a research scientist and a University lecturer. He has been teaching since 1982 and has been regularly invited to teach at workshops and conferences around the world since 1990.
Master Simon was introduced to yoga at age six, learning breath retentions from his father and the main bandhas (internal locks) from Basil Brown (an Olympic athletic). At age 17, Master Simon studied for one year with a Tibetan Lama who introduced him to the philosophy and practice of tantric yoga. In 1980, he started the postures and movements of Hatha Yoga, eventually learning with BKS Iyengar, K. Pattabhi Jois and TKV Desikachar.
In 1985, Master Simon met his main teacher Natanaga Zhander (Shandor Remete)and had the privilege of studying intensively with him for almost two decades. He credits Zhander as being the most important person in his pursuit, passion and understanding of Hatha Yoga. To this day, Zhander remains as his foremost yoga inspiration and mentor.
Over a period of 20 years, Master Simon studied and taught at Sydney University, where he completed a Bachelor of Science in Human Biology, a research based Master of Science in Molecular Biology and a Bachelor of Applied Science in Physiotherapy. In 1988, Master Simon met physiotherapist and yoga teacher Bianca Machliss. Together, over the last 20 years, they have developed the unique Yoga Synergy system.
Master Simon has regularly taught yoga to dance companies (Sydney Dance Company, Darc Swan, Bangarra Dance Company), as well as lectured at the University of New South Wales and the University of Western Sydney. In addition, he has performed with several dance productions and numerous yogic dance performances. He regularly gives artistic demonstrations of advanced yoga vinyasa to music.
As well, Master Simon has contributed chapters on yoga to several technical books including An Introduction to Complementary Medicine (2005) and Integrative Medicine Perspectives (2007). He also contributes regularly to yoga/health magazines and journals. Master Simon has been invited to speak on radio and appeared on television on numerous occasions. He is featured in the recently released film ‘Yoga and Me’ (2009). He has also been invited to be a guest lecturer/presenter at many conventions and conferences in Australia and abroad.
Since 1995, Master Simon has been teaching courses in Applied Anatomy and Physiology of Yoga internationally. Apart from training teachers in Yoga Synergy System, he has also been a guest lecturer at many major yoga teacher training courses throughout the world. In 2007, Master Simon was approached by Professor Marc Cohen of the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology to create a course called 'Applied Eastern Anatomy'. He is now the main lecturer and co-ordinator of this course which he developed and wrote with Bianca Machliss.
In 2010, Master Simon developed and is now teaching a course called 'Yoga Fundamentals'. Both of these courses form part of the new internationally recognized Master of Wellness degree. This is the first time that yoga has ever been taught as a university degree subject.