A couple of changes on the horizon

Beginning in December, Chair Yoga at 11 am on Thursdays has been moved to 10:45 on Thursdays at the Blossom Hill location of Almaden Yoga. So, there is a 15 minute difference in time, and the location has changed to 7 minutes down the road.

Also, I am finishing my first year of Yoga Therapy! I can’t believe that I’m only a couple weeks shy of halfway through. I will have my 500 hour certification for this year. As previously mentioned, my very inexpensive first year intern rates for a Yoga Therapy session will be going up next year. So, if you would like to see me before the end of the year, I have a couple of time slots open still. Currently, I am seeing clients on a sliding need-based scale of $25-$50. Next year, the price will increase to $50-$75 as a second year intern, commensurate with more education and experience in the field. Meeting remotely is also an option, given a good camera on both ends.

If you will be meeting with friends and family next week from near and far, may you have a heartfelt connection with one another. There will be no class with me next week at Willow Glen Yoga or Almaden Yoga. Private sessions may be possible.

See me at Lokahi Acupuncture!

Next Wednesday, the 1st of March, I will launch my new semi-private class at Lokahi Acupuncture. The focus is foundational movement, strength and flexibility building and learning yoga from the ground up. My space at Lokahi is very limited (maximum of three participants!), so if you are looking for an intimate class to develop your yoga skills, email me and I can get you signed up. We can work toward your specific health goals, while meeting your needs with any concerns you may have.

These classes will be comprised of a combination of yoga, meditation and breathwork to center you body, mind and soul.

If you haven’t been to Lokahi yet, check out their offerings. All of the acupuncturists are top-notch practitioners and kind people, and I personally receive care there as well.

 

Time: Wednesdays 11:30-12:45

Cost: $30, or $25 if you sign up for multiple sessions

Contact me to arrange a private session, or an alternate time.

 

New Classes Launching and Finding Progress in your Practice

In an absolute windfall of awesomeness, I have been picked up by another yoga studio, and have brand new classes at all three that I am working with!

On my home page, all details will be listed, but in short, I have the following in September:

Mondays at 10 am, Yoga Basics at Willow Glen Yoga

Tuesdays at 7 pm, Vinyasa for All at Downtown Yoga Shala

Wednesdays at 10:45, Full-Figured Yoga at Almaden Yoga (a 4 week series beginning 9/14)

Thursdays at 6:30 am, a refreshing dose of Vinyasa at Willow Glen Yoga

What luck, right?!?  I hope to see some (oh, heck, all of you!) there sometime.  If you have questions, please email me.

On to weightier matters, recently I read Yoga Beyond Belief by Ganga White, and honestly, I think it may be one of my most favorite reads ever, and definitely at the top of the list for yoga and mind/body books in general.  One of the many quotes in this work that I liked follows.

Advancing in yoga is more related to refining than to attaining.  If you want to know if you are advancing in yoga, ask yourself these questions: Am I gaining greater understanding of my body?  Am I learning how to heal myself?  Am I learning subtler and different ways of using the poses and how each asana affects the body to produce different results…Am I beginning to get some control of my own autonomic nervous system and some of the unconscious processes of the body?  Am I less rigid in my beliefs and less fixed in particular systems and structures?  Am I alive and awake in my practice, constantly questioning and willing to vacate my position–figuratively and actually?  Am I questioning, not only of others but of myself?  Is my mind becoming more open, compassionate, more peaceful?  (White, Ganga Yoga Beyond Belief: Insights to Awaken and Deepen your Practice Berkeley: North Atlantic Books, 2007)

One person may not feel all of these shifts all in one go, but you might get a taste of them.  Often, we focus so much on the “progress” of the asana, which, let’s face it–it’s a clear measurement, but we forget all the intangible benefits of yoga.

When I was a much, much, younger woman, I came out of a very bad relationship.  It was all the dysfunction, without any of the “fun” in it.  Having come out of a chaotic home life, into a relationship with a very unpredictable man for the formative years of my adulthood 5 of them!), I craved stability of any stripe.  The man and I separated, and consequently, I was easy pickings for a very strict religious sect in which I attempted to live “by the rules” for the next 5 years of my life.  Eventually, this led to a real disconnect for me that was absolutely shattering.  When I picked up the pieces again of my life, I made this my litmus test for religion and philosophy: does it make me kinder?  If it doesn’t make me a kinder person, it is not the place for me.

Look through that list above, and honestly, if you love yoga, read the whole book.  It isn’t a hard read at all.  But, is your practice making you kinder?  Is it making you more open?  Compassionate?  Self-aware?  Peaceful?  Are you coming to greater self-knowledge?  Are you sensitive to your flesh and subtle bodies?

It’s a great thing to burst through into a new asana.  It really is.  But, it isn’t the only measure of progress.  Drop a line in the comments to let me know how yoga has affected you.

A Door Closes and a Window Opens

So, a door closes, and a window opens, and other platitudes is my topic today.  If you’ve been reading my blog, you know that my children are starting school this year (in less than a month!), and I’ve had a little time to test-drive what it will be like to get my kids to school on time through the use of summer camps.  The answer is that it will be very, very hard to get my children to school on time, at least without big changes to how I run mornings in my house.

My old schedule was extremely luxurious.  I would wake up, get dressed in the quiet of the house and head to the yoga studio around 6 or 6:30, do my 90 minute routine, perhaps chat with people afterward, text my husband that I was on my way home, and come back to the glorious scents that only someone who isn’t cooking their own breakfast can enjoy.  My husband is the better breakfast cook by far and assumes most responsibility for it, much to my delight.  There’s really no reason for me to improve on that front.  After breakfast, and an additional cup of tea, washing up, showering, etc., then I would start my day.

This summer I’ve discovered that I can’t actually have it all, not to mention that school starts a full 1/2 hour earlier than anything I’ve signed my kids up for this summer.  Unless I were to arrive at the studio an hour before most people get there, it would be impossible to do my routine and make it to school on time.  So, what to do?  What should I cut?  Yoga?  Breakfast?  Showering?  (NO).

I’ve finally surrendered myself to the fact that my yoga practice has to change.  If I am just squeezing it in early and rushing through it, ever conscious of the time ticking, am I still doing yoga?  Or am I doing surly aerobics?  The last couple of weeks, I thought I’d try to adapt a little.  Classes at a different time.  Different styles of yoga.  Yoga at home when the kids aren’t.  Adding some aerobics, and then yoga.  All this change takes an effort, but I have to tell you, my windows are wide-open right now.  My mind has become so curious about what makes yoga special to me.  I’m seeing the value in doing different things.  I’m sure I’ll settle on something.  I am a creature of routine, after all.  But for now, it feels good to be back in an exploration phase.

Do I still feel some sadness about not being able to do my special practice in the same way that I have been for the last few years?  Yes, of course.  But it doesn’t preclude the idea that there might be another special practice right around the corner.  Seldom do I try anything new when the old thing works just fine.  I have been shoved into change, but now I have moved past the bitterness stage, and into the curious stage, which is a fine place to be.

 

 

 

News and Gratitude

First off, I wanted to let you all know I’ve got some classes in the works coming up.  I am launching a Full-Bodied Yoga series out of Willow Glen Yoga, beginning in July, with a smaller crash-course intro in June.  I will let you know days and times when it has been put up on their website.  Full-Bodied Yoga is perfect for anyone you know who has a larger body, and/or flexibility challenges who could benefit on working on their alignment through the use of modifications and props.

I also am now teaching a mixed levels Vinyasa class at Downtown Yoga Shala on Wednesdays at 12 p.m.  This class will be faster paced for those who want to get in a heating, and energizing practice to brighten up their midweek workday.

Finally, I recently read a quote which I just love and thought I’d leave here, attributed to Gautama Buddha.

Let us rise up and be thankful, for if we didn’t learn a lot at least we learned a little, and if we didn’t learn a little, at least we didn’t get sick, and if we got sick, at least we didn’t die, so, let us all be thankful.