“Worry is a thin stream of fear trickling through the mind. If encouraged, it cuts a channel into which all other thoughts are drained.” Arthur Rache
Frustration. Confusion. Worry. These are just some of the emotions I have encountered since the start of 2019. I don’t think I’m alone.
Topsy-turvy events in SW1, combined with disturbing facts about the level of carbon dioxide already in the air have led my brain into some uncomfortable mental gymnastics recently.
Yet thankfully, as highly regarded international yoga teacher Rod Stryker, reminds us:
“A lot of people think that yoga is contortion of the body. Actually it is life that is the contortion and yoga that undoes the anxiety. Yoga is the ultimate cross training for anxiety, stress and sadness.”
Anxiety, stress, sadness, frustration, confusion, worry. Life wouldn’t be much fun if we felt those things all the time. A regular yoga practice is a potent tool for breaking down these negative emotions and channelling them into a more upbeat frame of mind.
So thanks (in part) to a daily grounding and balancing practice of postures and breath work, and inspiration from a wonderful qigong and meditation training, I’ve also been feeling incredibly grateful, happy and full of love for life this year.
Despite all the uncertainty and unease there is so much to celebrate as winter transforms itself into spring. The soft early morning light, radiant red tulips in the garden, pastel-pink blossom on the trees, the smell of a warm buttered hot cross bun….perhaps make up a list of your own!
My aim this spring has been to offer this more balanced outlook to my students, with recent classes focusing on finding strength and steadiness amidst the hurly-burly of modern challenges. We have been focusing on energising our feet and working our legs to create a firm foundation for a more fluid, flexible spine. When combined with appropriate breathing practices, rest and meditation, this physical work supports us at a deeper level, helping us to remain stable and grounded yet act with confidence and an open mind through difficult circumstances.
Looking a few months ahead, there are six spaces left on mini retreat on Sunday 8 September in beautiful Hambleden village. Hambleden is just an hour from London and the location for numerous film and TV productions including Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and 101 Dalmatians.
This day will follow a similar format to recent day retreats in Oxfordshire and Berkshire, exploring elements of the yoga practice that we don’t have time for in weekly classes, along with more familiar postures and breath work. The day costs £74 pp and includes all teas, lunch, homemade cakes, a guided walk and two lovely long yoga practices. Please click here for more details and contact me to book.
In the meantime, have a wonderful Easter and look forward to seeing you in class soon.