09 December 2013

Ashtanga yoga flash mob London.


The stillness of ashtanga yoga against this amazing London backdrop. I love this short video clip in my home town-Thank you to Stillpoint Yoga London for sharing

06 December 2013

Meet some of the Yoga Alliance UK teachers


Meet some of the Yoga Alliance UK Teachers from Yoga Alliance UK on Vimeo.

Join some of the Yoga Alliance UK Teachers as they tell us about how they started their yoga journey and what is important to them. Recorded at the Om Yoga Show in 2013.

For your information a rather tired me appears at 05:21 ;o)

03 December 2013

Fantastic vegetarian restaurant Tierra .

Good vegetarian restaurants are hard to find in the UK, but Tierra in Lyme Regis is "The best".

The menu is fantastic and so original. The staff were friendly and efficient and the cost was very reasonable. I would highly recommend a visit to this restaurant if you are ever in Lyme Regis, Dorset. I would even go as far as to say take a visit to this beautiful part of England just to eat here. Hopefully the chef, Mark Evans, will produce a book with his wonderful creations.





26 November 2013

Practising yoga with injuries. No pain, no gain?



I am out of action at the moment. I have a hip impingement which has been going on for a quite a while. I've seen all the great and good in the London hip scene (pardon the pun) and have continued my yoga practice the best I can whilst working around the injury site and not taking myself into a point of pain. A recent stint which had me sat at a computer for more hours than I care to count has aggravated the impingement and the steroid injection I had in August has started to wear off.

One of the problems I now have is pain and inflammation causes muscle inhibition. As I currently have pain,  I have been advised to rest to see if the pain subsides. Continuing to work through the pain inhibits the muscles around the injury site and stops them from working efficiently; therefore doing more damage than good. Once I  am relatively pain free, I will work the muscles (in this case the glutes and other core stabilisers) in isolation to try and gain back the strength that has been  lost around the pain site. So the old saying "no pain, no gain" definitely does not apply to injuries. It might be worth remembering this if you are practising with pain and inflammation, as you may be adding to the problem.


21 November 2013

Yoga Leg Behind the Head: Eka Pada Sirsasana with Kino



This is a pose I struggle with ( although I do have hip impingement on one side, which doesn't help).
I'm going to try these tips to see if things change :-)

04 November 2013

Karandavasana by R. Sharath Jois in Mysore



Great clip of Sharath in the shala in Mysore-amazing how he is able to stay really focused whilst his son plays around a few feet away from him. I also thought it interesting how high he stays on his toes when he jumps back & rolls forward-thoughts on that anyone?

Thank you to Madeleine Warwick for sharing

30 October 2013

A moment of Zen at the London Yoga show 2013

The Yoga Mama team had a wonderful (busy) time at the Om Yoga show here in London.

The show also featured the Mind, Body exhibition where there was plenty of weird and wonderful things happening, including spiritual hair cutting.

We met so many lovely people and I was really happy to have some of my yoga pals drop by and say hello... A big thank you to everyone who made it possible.

Here are some photos of the event. For more details on Pregnancy yoga teacher training in London go to www.yogamama.co.uk

The one quiet moment
    
 Some of the Yoga Mama team 

                       
Some of the Yoga Mama team 

The Yoga Mama stand

Kevin joins the team :-)
Marygrace

 Mel from Yogaclicks brings us a smile
                
 Scott from Stillpoint yoga London selling t-shirts... not :-)) 
   

  It's a family affair... the husband 
                                       
Cupcakes

 Olympia, such a beautiful building 
     
The wonderful Michael Gannon demonstrates Bandha 
The wonderful Michael Gannon demonstrates Bandha 
                       

Pyramid selling?

 Clearly where I'm going wrong. 


23 October 2013

16 October 2013

Quiet London



Quiet London is a beautiful book full of quiet spots in London-written and photographed by the wonderful artist Siobhan Wall. As a Londoner I love the vibrancy and mix of London-I also love quiet spaces too, and this book offers many "secret spots" I didn't know about.

Siobhan is currently writing another Quiet London book and the Yoga Mama studio in Putney has the privilege of being listed in it.

I would highly recommend this to both Londoners and visitors to the capital- who need a little "time out" from the hustle and bustle of the city- and those that enjoy beautiful original photographs of places in London, that you wont find in a guide book.

Available from Amazon

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Quiet-London-Siobhan-Wall/dp/0711231907/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1381671173&sr=8-1&keywords=quiet+London

14 October 2013

All about the balance. Coconut water, wine and beer.



A snap from inside my fridge this week. The mix of wine, beer and vita coca sort of sums up my family really. The ones that drink wine and beer don't go in for the coco water-and the coco water drinker doesn't go in for wine or beer. In summary none of us need worry about the other nicking all the drinks :-)

Svadhayaya ; Self study

Svadhyaya : means self- study. A teacher can only guide a yoga student. A student must then go and study- expanding the knowledge they have learnt from their teacher, until they have some deeper personal understanding of the subject, being shown to them.


Swadhayadisthaddevatasamprayogah YS 2.44

While practicing self study we totally submerse ourselves in the deity that we have chosen.

See Sharath Jois- Astanga yoga Anusthana for his interpretation on this. 

01 October 2013

Sharath Jois yoga. Warrior 1 & 2




Interesting to see Sharath count into the pose, but not in the pose its self-same as Manju Jois did in a resent led class I attended.
This is exactly how I was taught this sequence by my teacher Nancy Gilgoff-I notice some teachers ( and students) go into a really deep Utkatasana. Lovely to see the shala in Mysore, sweated it out in that spot a few times myself :-)

30 September 2013

Yoga for birth preparation.

How does this pregnancy yoga class differ from a general prenatal yoga class? Diane King our specialist teacher explains.

Yoga for birth preparation classes
Diane’s  Yoga for birth preparation classes are tailored for the final stages of pregnancy (From 32 weeks), where what we need most is to quieten the mind, let go of time pressures and constant doing and be in a consciously relaxed state, where we can connect with ourselves, our babies and our inner birthing wisdom.
The course runs over four weeks and each week a different topic is discussed at the start of class:
Week 1: The natural physiology of birth – What to expect at different stages of the labour process
Week 2: Managing fear – Trusting your body and nurturing a sense of empowerment
Week 3: Creating a positive intention and guided relaxation – Letting go of the intellect and connecting with intuition and instincts
Week 4: Using breath as your anchor in labour – Detailed breath techniques for the different stages of labour
After the initial discussion, the session becomes more body focused, incorporating yoga postures that can help move the labour process along and build an inner and outer strength, to support a women along the course of her labour. The class ends with a restorative relaxation, fully supporting the mum to be, so they can let go and connect with their inner self and their babies. Above all, the class aims to nurture a sense of community and sharing in the final stages of pregnancy to support women as they approach their birth and enter into motherhood.

To find out more www.yogamama.co.uk or contact The Putney clinic 0208789 3881


18 September 2013

Manju Jois in London

I feel really lucky to have practised yoga with the two people I would call the most influential teachers in my yoga practice, Nancy Gilgoff and Sharath Jois, here in London this summer (see previous blog items).

Nancy has of course known the Jois family for many, many years and recommended practising ashtanga yoga with Manju, if I got the opportunity.

StillPoint yoga London hosted him here in London and I managed to get along to one led ashtanga yoga class. It was a wonderful experience and I can only describe it as a "soft and joyful" practice.

It is always interesting to see how the same yoga asanas (more or less), are taught differently by different teachers. Manju counted us into the pose but not once we were in it. I glanced at him in in what seemed to be a very long Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana and saw that he was counting to himself throughout. This really made me smile. The long pranayama and chanting were the best and was indeed the pranayama practice Nancy had taught me this summer. If you get a chance to spend a bit of time with Manju on his travels then take it. He will be in Maui with Nancy in November at her shala The house of yoga and Zen.














05 September 2013

Sharath Jois teaching short Pranayama. on Youtube A sign of things to come?



Well this is a rare treat indeed-Sharath teaching a short pranayama on youtube and wearing his Brahmin thread. This is the pranayama that he shared here in London on his recent trip.This is the first time I have ever seen a video of him teaching like this.

01 September 2013

Yoga ruins your life

Interesting title from Richard Freeman (mind you, he is always interesting). Before you jump to conclusions watch the video Yoga ruins your life... as you once knew it.

30 August 2013

Sharath Jois London tour 2013. What a wonderful week!



What an honour it has been to be part of the ashtanga yoga community sharing a week of yoga with the wonderful Sharath Jois here in London.

Meeting new people, seeing familiar faces, and even practising next to my daughter on one occasion. Sharath was truly happy and shiny (which was very contagious)  and even taught a short pranayama at the end of the led primary class on two occasions (which I personally have never experienced with him before). He said that you could use this pranayama if you were stressed or angry... perhaps he thinks us Londoners need it! :-)

He laughed a lot. My daughter Cally had her hands apart in virabhadrasana 1 and I could hear him saying "close your hands" and knew he was talking to her. I reached over and pushed them together. He whispered to me "is she yours?" and laughed (he later said he thought we looked very similar). We were two in a very large group. I'm sure everyone in the room has taken a bit of "Sharath sunshine" with them into their lives. His ability to share and make everyone feel part of something special is amazing.

I'm truly grateful that he has picked up the baton and continues the linage handed down to him from his grandfather Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. I don't imagine these are easy shoes to fill, but Sharath looks like he is happily settling into them...

A big thank you to Ashtanga Yoga London for making this all possible. If you were skiving off work and don't want to appear in any photos please let me know and I will remove them :-)


My girl meets Sharath...


Smiley faces all round...











27 August 2013

Eka Pada Ibiza style


After a week of "super clubs" in Ibiza my son busts his version of Eka Pada in a "Trapstar" hat and "Nike Huarache" trainers. While the attire is pretty cool, it is not recommended with this yoga pose.   :-) 

11 August 2013

Guru To Go: A portrait of R. Sharath Jois.




A wonderful clip from Sharath's tour in Copenhagen. Hosted by Susanna and Jens at the Astanga Yoga Copenhagen. I have not seen the bowing to Sharath feet being done before. Thank you to Alessandro Sigismondi for sharing.

08 August 2013

07 August 2013

Niyama. Sauca - purity - Sharath Jois

From Sharath Jois Astanga Yoga Anusthana:  Sauca means maintaining both internal and external purity (antara sauca and bahir sauca, respectively) Thinking good positive thoughts will keep our mind pure. Likewise keeping our environment and person, clothes, body, belongings and surroundings clean and clear will also keep our vision clean and clear.

With purity of speech and thought, the mind will also be purified. Once the mind is purified then the atma (the soul) will be purified. This applies especially to the yoga practitioner, who should keep himself clean in respect to and in consideration for others, and also as an example to others. saucatsvangajugupsa parairasmsargah YS 2.40 From cleanliness, an aversion to one's own body and contact with the bodies of others develops.

02 August 2013

An inspirational yoga teacher Matthew Sanford. Please share his message.




A wonderful video clip of an inspirational man. I was moved and inspired by Matthew. He will be running workshops at Triyoga in London in September 2013. Matthew Sanford realising the inner body + adapting yoga for everyone: a weekend of workshops + two-day intensive Wednesday 11 - Sunday 15 September.

27 July 2013

20 July 2013

There was never a time when I did not exist

There was never a time when I did not exist, nor you, nor any being. Nor is there any future in which we shall cease to be. That which is non-existent can never come into being. That which is can never cease to be. That reality which pervades the universe is indestructible. No-one has the power to change the changeless.
Bhagavad Gita

06 July 2013

Ashtanga Yoga Mama


Here is a photo of a 5 month pregnant ashtanga yoga student at Nancy's recent London workshops.
She had a beautiful fluid practice and was taking appropriate modifications for pregnancy-I would not recommend you take up ashtanga yoga in pregnancy- but as you can see, if you already have a practice you can continue once you have passed the 3 month period ( Sharath Jois is recommending you do not practice ashtanga in the first three months). Talk to your teacher for advise on modifications, as not all poses are suitable during pregnancy


30 June 2013

Nancy Gilgoffs London Ashtanga yoga workshops...Humility.



Ive had a wonderful week with Nancy- she came and taught three days of workshops in my studio here in Putney. We had a great time together and I was honoured to have been her assistant during the three days of practice.
We talked about all sorts of things: from the teachings of the Dali lama, discussing ( and practising) pranayama, and even watched a fair amount of the Wimbledon tennis together. I heard lots of stories about guruji and his family, and the early days in Mysore. I feel I have learnt a lot from her on this trip and none of this was about asana.
I have a real sense at the moment that the more I know, the less I know.....this yoga is a lifetime journey and I have only scratched the surface.

Here are some photos.....