Yoga. Moving the body, stilling the mind. My absolute favourite topic at the moment. In July I started my yoga teaching journey….yes it is a journey, simply because I am learning every time I teach. Quite honestly I am loving it. I fell into yoga years ago, when an exercise class I attended regularly suddenly changed to yoga. This did not make me happy, but I gave it a go and loved it. I loved the challenge of trying to hold the “perfect” posture. In todays world I wanted to look like the Instagram yogis!

I obviously never stayed for savasana (the lying down bit of the class at the end), I’d look apologetically at the teacher as I crept out the class, pretending I had to be somewhere. I wasn’t interested in lying down I was all about sweating when I exercise, I wanted the ‘grrrrr’ not the “ommm”.  How times have changed. If you told me to lie in savasana for the whole class now, I’d be right there, and very happy to do as I was told! Don’t get me wrong I still love the “grrrr” but I have embraced the “ommmm”

More than just postures.

Yoga is an ancient art. Back in the day it was designed just for men. Women weren’t allowed to practice. As we think of it now in the UK, yoga is very much about the asanas or postures, and maybe some breathing. But it is so much more than that. The asanas (postures) are just one of the Eight Limbs of Yoga. Pranayama (breathing practice) is another limb. Along with the other six limbs (which I can name, but will leave that for another post!), the asanas and pranayama were considered to act as guidelines on how to live a meaningful and purposeful life. They encompass moral and ethical conduct towards yourself and others, self discipline, attention to your physical and mental health.

For me yoga became a way to improve my mental health, quietening the mind, slowing down and being aware of my body. Connecting and feeling what my body needed, using my breath to encourage deeper movements. I also love the challenges that it poses (excuse the pun), there are certain postures that I would like to move deeper into, hold a little bit longer, and that’s ok. Yoga gives different things to different people.

My Yoga

I am always asked “what sort of yoga do you teach?” I never really know the answer to this. Of course most yoga stems from the Hatha branch of yoga, and that’s what I teach. But to put a tagline on my yoga it’s about moving the body, and stilling the mind. I want to make the yoga that I teach as accessible to everyone as possible. Probably the best feedback I have had was “it’s just you teaching yoga. It’s Amy teaching yoga.” Keeping my authenticity.

My back ground in sports massage shows me how static and immobile people can be from desk work, using various devices or doing the same repetitive activity.  We have become too closed, and I want my yoga to open the body, like spreading wings. It’s also apparent how busy our lives have become. We are busy, rushing to the next thing, all too often as we are still finishing off the current task. So giving yourself permission to let yourself concentrate on your body, your mind, your mat, in my book, is important, blissful and necessary.

If you are local to Exeter and what to have a go at my yoga class, here’s the link for booking. It would be great to see you.

Happy Yoga-ing. Namaste x