I hoard yoga sequences. When I write out a plan for teaching, I will use it for my own practice and for my classes over the week. But I seldom throw these programs out. I save my designs, and I keep other teachers’, too. If I do a class in San Francisco or Byron Bay or even with local teachers, I will ask for that teacher’s written plan.
After almost four decades of yoga practice and teaching, I have filled seven lever arch files. Each of these holds 500 A4 pages. In addition, I have a box of programs still to be filed which I haven’t been able to face as yet. There’s just one more area of hoarding. These are the folders from my retreat and workshop plans I’ve kept for years.
Back when I was just a just a youngster in my Iyengar yoga training, I attended six weeks of classes at the Yoga Institute in Poona, India. People seldom go to study with the Iyengars without the experience being life-changing; there’s so much to learn.
On one occasion, Mr. Iyengar’s son, Prashant, taught us in a general class. We warmed up for about an hour with standing poses, with special attention paid to tadasana (mountain pose). […]
On questionnaires that ask for me for my occupation, I write in ‘semi-retired’. That’s shorthand to describe that I work sometimes. At other times, I participate in various kinds of recreation, such as singing or tennis. I study a bit, and I also volunteer in the community in Palliative Care.
Though semi-retired, I haven’t cut back on my yoga practice. That’s just as well as I’m busier than I ever was when I worked full-time. This seems to be a common feature of those who profess to being semi-retired.
From time to time, I wear myself out completely.
Bolstering Our Immune Systems
Does anyone need to be told that we are well into the cold and flu season?
We are approaching the shortest day of the year. But we’re fooling ourselves if we don’t see that the Aussie winter is just beginning to settle in.
As smart yogis, we can bunker down, take care and look after our immune systems so as not to succumb to colds and flues.
For optimum health, all of us know to eat enough fresh fruits and vegetables, Vitamin D and lean protein. […]
The healing benefits of supported bridge
Do you have poses that you do rain or shine and in all seasons. Your body and mind say, ‘This is an every day pose. Bring it!’ Supported bridge (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana) is one of these.
It can be performed in a variety of ways. […]
Adapt your practice
We’re facing a solid week ahead of temperatures in the low 30’s in our region, accompanied by high humidity. (For Americans, that translates to low 90’s.)
For me, that points to doing my best to stay cool when I do my yoga practice. And I use yoga tools, like meditation, pranayama, relaxation and passive yoga poses, to cool my body and brain.
Consider some of the ways you can support better breathing, for instance, lying supine over bolsters to open your chest. […]
My ritual morning cuppa
There’s a certain morning ritual that I have performed ever since I was 16 years old. This is the age when coffee and I started our long and friendly relationship.
I enrolled in a summer high school class which started at 7am. Everyone knows that teenagers are not biologically designed for early mornings. I was in shock when that first alarm went off. Making and drinking a cuppa soon became the ritual that got me going each day. […]
In the U.S., the stifling stickiness of the hot weather season is undeniably upon us so we yoga practitioners need to adapt to this climate. It’s not as humid here in Tucson as in the buildup to The Wet of Australia’s tropical north, but this weather can still be mind-numbing and body-immobilising.
To help deal with the current wet weather pattern, I’ve decided to re-purpose an earlier post called’Rainy Day Practice’. Do poses from this sequence to help alleviate that pesky condition called S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder). The program below is designed to generate heat and dry out internals organs–and put a smile on your face.
This yogi travels to America
Everyone seems to understand this important bit of information except me: I am an American.
Yes, it is true. I was born in the USA seventy-two and a half years ago. But because I’ve lived in Australia for 41 years and have my Aussie citizenship, I sometimes forget that I’m American-born. Until my accent gives me away completely.
When Daniel and I were travelling around Australia last winter, we would get sprung every time. […]
Regarding yoga practice, when the temperature is hot in the extreme, do you go to ground? I’ve learned that you don’t necessarily need to skip your yoga practice. Just do cool yoga.
In Australia now, we are experiencing a summer where the atmosphere is heavy with humidity and heat. It’s not as humid here in NSW as it is in the buildup to ‘The Wet’ of our tropical north. […]
Supta Virasana: Your Stomach’s Friend
Supta Virasana, reclining Hero Pose, is just what I need today after experiencing the Big Xmas Lunch Indulgence. No doubt it will be followed by the Big Boxing Day Seafood Extravaganza. […]