Yoga offers us a holistic approach to body, mind and spirit, which can provide us with the means to manage the challenges of daily life not only efficiently but also effectively, cultivating a peaceful and durable environment within and beyond ourselves.
A list of my regular classes can be found here.
What is Yoga?
These are various definitions of yoga from texts and practitioners, including the following:
"The yoke, or union, of the body and mind"
"The juxtaposition of two opposing forces to reveal the third, all encompassing, force"
"The liberation of the spine as the 5th limb"
"The cessation of the perturbations of consciousness"
Yoga is a classical Indian discipline, a systematic way for harmonious living and self improvement, based on the principle that a human being is a complex entity of physical, mental and spiritual attributes. It is a system that allows you to work for good health and maintain it. As you plant the seeds of regular practice in body and mind, your yoga practice becomes a part of your daily routine.
The benefits you notice may be physical; you might find that old niggling pain is reduced or disappears completely. You may simply notice your posture has improved and you sleep more easily, or you may find a spiritual awakening, enhancing your relationships and deepening a sense of compassion.
Yoga is not a religion; it can be practiced by any who walk this life, whether they hold true to a faith or not. Practices are non-judgmental, reaching to enhance health, spirit and community.
Am I fit enough to practice?
Yoga requires no more than an open mind and a willingness to maintain the discipline of a regular practice. Whether you feel your movement is restricted, or even if you feel you are too flexible; yoga can be practiced in a way that restores the appropriate balance of flexibility and strength.
Yoga treats us as individuals, and to that end allows us freedom in the postures to work to our own limit. Flexibility and strength appear in body and mind, and meditative peace can be discovered at home in your muscles, your breathing and your fingertips just as much as it can in your thoughts, feelings and intellect.
Can Yoga be used alongside medical treatment?
Yoga can complement medical science and therapy for specific conditions as well as amplify their benefits. In yoga practice, stretching and strengthening the muscles interacts and improves your circulation, digestion and breathing. It calms the nervous system, giving peace of mind, in turn affecting the immune system and helping to strengthen the body as a whole.
What sort of Yoga is practiced in classes?
The yoga practiced in class is Hatha Yoga in that we use the body and breath together. I take inspiration from many teachers and sources, including the YogaMonks method.
My classes combine alignment in postures with flowing routines. This combination of movement and stillness aims to explore connections within and beyond the body, in order to strengthen and soften body and mind. Being aware of how we are using our body is far more important than the shapes we aspire to.
"The body is sensitive. It registers every thought and feeling. Be tender with it."