Health

Yoga and Wet, Windy, Wintery Weather

Yoga and Wet, Windy, Wintery Weather

Like most people, we wanted real estate with a beautiful outlook. So, we had our home built on the top of a rise. We can see mountains to the west, wildlife in the forest, green pastures and distant water views.
What we also got as a result of being so elevated is full exposure to the blustery  wet winds that have been hammering Mitchells Island today.
I wouldn’t trade our magnificent outlook for the windless quiet of a sheltered dell. I love being able to see broad horizons and big skies. […]

Do You Suffer from Yoga Teacher Burn-out?

Do You Suffer from Yoga Teacher Burn-out?

I led a workshop a while back for the Yoga Australia Association to address the issue of ‘yoga teacher burn-out’. It was an experiential session. We had an energetic discussion about how stressed teachers get in their lives and we tried to get to the bottom of why we behave in such a driven way at times.
While we didn’t get to any handy solutions, it made a difference to hear individuals talk about burn-out. […]

How to Avoid 'Is-This-All-There-Is?' Syndrome

How to Avoid 'Is-This-All-There-Is?' Syndrome

You might be aware that I live in a little community of three couples on five acres in the country. When we located to this rural setting after having lived for decades in the city, we met our new neighbours and joined a choir, a book club and other groups.
I felt that I had to let our new acquaintances know very gently that my living situation was unusual, to say the least, at my age and stage in life: six people living under one roof. […]

Practice is not about being perfect. It’s about being you.

Practice is not about being perfect. It’s about being you.

Kathy Cooper Yoga Mats via Pinterest
I’ve uncovered a new offence that I’m capable of. I’m calling it creation-envy. What occurs for me when I hear of a great idea or turn of phrase is that I find myself wishing I’d thought of it or said it first.
Occasionally, I’ll hear another yoga teacher say something in class that is so perfectly verbalised that I just have to ‘borrow’ it. […]

"Good at Any Age"

"Good at Any Age"

 

I hope you will allow me a little whinge. I’ve been keeping it to myself for a while but I think it’s about time now to vent a bit.
This is my complaint: I’m tired of the media image of yoga that shows youngish, pretty women (and sometimes attractive youthful men) doing advanced poses in designer clothing.
There. It’s out. […]

Good Yoga Practice: Time Out for Renewal

Good Yoga Practice: Time Out for Renewal

One of the beautiful things about living in the country and being ‘semi-retired’ is that I have ample time to connect with people.
Sitting down with a cuppa to chat with a friend and not having time constraints – the conversation can go in unexpected directions. Instead of handling business or talking about what one of you needs from the other, you can just let content emerge organically, if you will.
Tomorrow I’m flying to South Australia, then to magnificent Kangaroo Island, to meet up with six dear women friends. […]

Yoga: When the Phone is Ringing, It Helps You Connect

Yoga: When the Phone is Ringing, It Helps You Connect

Judy is in a rehabilitation centre at the moment ‘finding her legs’, as she is 15 days out from double hip replacement surgery. She is a veteran yogi and also trained as a yoga teacher, and probably has about 35 years of Iyengar yoga under her belt.
Judy’s doing another kind of training now with the physiotherapists at Hunters Hill Private Hospital. […]

Cutting Back Those Tiny Twinges

Cutting Back Those Tiny Twinges

 

 
Out of all the thousands of poses in the world, how do you know which of them to practice.
Or, if you’re a yoga teacher, how do you know what to teach?
Of course, it depends on many of variables, the most important one being, read your body. Another indicator is read the seasons.
At the moment we’ve been doing summer gardening – especially cutting back weeds and hauling full wheelbarrows of them for disposal. […]

How Elders Thrive and Not Just Survive

How Elders Thrive and Not Just Survive

Ten years ago, almost to the date, we six seniors held a meeting with flip chart and textas with the intention of generating a vision of another way of doing retirement and old age. Let’s face it – prospects of living in retirement villages or moving to the country sans old friends are less than appealing.
So, today is a very auspicious anniversary because our dream has been realised.
Not that we are old yet. Oldish. […]

Remedial Yoga in a Holistic Context

Remedial Yoga in a Holistic Context

In this morning’s yoga class there were six students: one with a pinched neck nerve, one with a strained rotator cuff, one with dodgy knees, one with an arthritic ankle and elbow tendonitis, one with a sore back, and one ‘normal’ (at least for the time being).
In looking at a group ‘remedially’, I saw a collection of ailments. Looking through the holistic lens of yoga, I saw students who are totally fit to practice yoga according to their ability.
For my money, I believe everyone should adapt yoga according to their individual needs and constitution. […]

What's the Invisible Ingredient That Yoga Schools Offer?

Source: blogs.yogajournal.com via LINDA on Pinterest

 
I think yoga schools miss the crucial bit of information in their advertising that explains why yoga class attendance can be so enticing. It’s not because of building a body beautiful. And not because all stresses will be dissolved in the arms of savasana (yoga relaxation) at the end of each class. And, it’s not even because any annoying ailments or injuries with which you arrived will miraculously be cured by doing yoga postures.
The thing that is so enrolling about good yoga schools is invisible, in a way. […]

The Ups and Downs of Urdhva Dhanuasana

The Ups and Downs of Urdhva Dhanuasana

People keep asking me whether I can do everything I used to be able to do before I had my double hip replacement. What a hard question!
Here’s a shot of me in 1990 doing a backbend, pre-hip arthritis.
 
And, here I am 22 years later teaching my bionic hips how to extend.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Those of you out there with your perfecto-meters will note that as a 68-year old, my shoulders are stiffish, but, hey, I used to be overly flexible.
It’s a funny thing. […]

Best Ways of Cultivating Concentration

Source: flickr.com via Jessica on Pinterest

 
Yesterday I wrote about how difficult I find it, at times, to pay attention. I’m finding the practice of mindfulness meditation gradually helping me improve my concentration.
Another aid for focussing the mind is the practice of pranayama – attention to the breath. Today I wanted to link back to Patanjali and his Sutra regarding pranayama. […]

Hips Are All the Rage

Hips Are All the Rage

Is there an epidemic of hip replacements going on? I know of three yoginis who will have the surgery done within a month time frame – mid-March to mid-April. To be fair, I also know women who haven’t done yoga who, for various reasons, had to have replacements.
If you’ve been following this blog, you know my story of bi-lateral surgery, performed more than 3 years ago. […]

How Did I Get Here?

How Did I Get Here?

 
I had some time this morning – quite a lot of it, actually – to wander around Bondi Junction, my old stomping grounds. Here’s a photo of the entrance to the Australian School of Yoga on Oxford Street.
I was mentally winding back the clock  to 1979 when I had my first experience of Iyengar Yoga taught by this man:

 
It’s fair to say that Martyn Jackson, Iyengar Yoga and the time I spent at the Australian School of Yoga changed the course of my life. […]

Life Time

Life Time

Time is such a fascinating, elastic thing. We humans can think ourselves into the past, and project ourselves into the future, but have a devil of a time staying put in the present. Meditate for just ten minutes and watch the handsprings your mind does.
Ageing has made me more acutely aware of time. […]

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