7 Reasons Why I’m Happy to be a Middle Aged Yogi….

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7 reasons I’m happy to be a middle aged yogi

As a yogi embracing the middle years there are many yoga trends I’m happy to let pass me by.  Here are 7 of them…


  • Any yoga class that has been heated to a temperature worthy of an industrial laundry.  My own body creates that heat spontaneously so why would I consider turning up the temperature…..on purpose?
  • Any yoga class that has the word ‘burn’, ‘boot’, ‘butt’ or ‘bust’ in the description.  Need I say more?
  • Any type of yoga clothing design that incorporates large cut out panels or swathes of mesh.  Worse still, not enough fabric to make a handkerchief from.

    Any yoga class that has the word ‘burn’, ‘boot’, ‘butt’ or ‘bust’ in the title.  Need I say more?

  • Any pose that involves contorting myself into the shape of a badly twisted pretzel.  I know Madonna managed to get both feet around her neck and good on her, but me?  With these hips?
  • Any yoga cleansing programs that involve a diet of foods I can’t pronounce and the need to perform four hours of acrobatic poses every day.  Just the thought of it makes me pine for a lie down…..when’s savasana?
  • Achieving a one armed handstand in the middle of the room/beach/park/any other random open space.  Didn’t happen for me at the peak of my yoga fitness so I’m happy to practice acceptance in the knowledge that it won’t happen now.
  • The trend for posting multiple yoga pose photographs to social media on a daily basis.  Can I go get a coffee instead?

How are these trends working out for you?

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Building a Home Yoga Practice

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Building a Home Yoga Practice

Remember when you had your exams at school.  The paper was placed in front of you and you’d have a few moments to organize your pencils, eraser, ruler, calculator or whatever other items you needed.  Then you would open the paper, read through it and decide in a moment of panic that you don’t know the answers and then proceed to organize your stuff again.

It’s not dissimilar to starting a home practice.  You lay out your mat and stack your blocks.  Fold your blanket neatly and roll your yoga strap into a tidy coil.  You sit on your mat, take a breath and then say to yourself ‘now what?’ and go back to rearranging your props.

When you come across articles about home practice it often appears to involve a whole heap of organization and commitment to finding the right spot with the right amount of time and at the right time of day but the key to actually building a home practice starts with just doing it.

Simply roll out your mat or just find a space on the floor in a place you feel comfortable in.  It might be your spare bedroom, your kitchen, your balcony or your local park.  If you need them, place your props close to hand and then do the pose or the handful of poses that you know.  Just that.  It doesn’t have to be a fancy sequence full of clever flows and interesting series of inversions, twists and standing poses, it just needs to be a pose.  One pose repeated on both sides and there begins your home practice.

The biggest obstacle to a home practice is in your head.

Forget the need to reproduce what your favorite instructor or dvd does for an hour and simply step up and start.

It may be only five minutes squeezed in while a kettle boils or thirty minutes snatched in the evening in place of the TV show you would survive without seeing anyway.

If an active, physical practice doesn’t appeal try a relaxing restorative pose.  Restorative yoga offers a great deal of positive benefits and when practiced on a daily basis is as beneficial as a full on vinyasa flow sequence.

Here’s a suggestion on how to start……

  1. Say to yourself – today I’m going to spend ten minutes doing yoga.  Making the decision to do it is often the difficult bit
  1. Find a space or roll out your mat and step on to it.  A little effort involved here but don’t overthink it.  It will take a minute
  1. Do a pose you like or can easily remember.  Doesn’t have to be sophisticated – mountain pose (tadasana) or childs pose both work.  It’s still yoga.  There,  you’ve done it
  1. Step off the mat and repeat the next day.  Takes will power to commit to the next day but you know you can do it because you just did it!
  1. When the next day comes say to yourself – today I’m going to spend ten minutes doing yoga.  As step 1 and then repeat

The biggest obstacle to a home practice is in your head.  You’ll notice that the list starts and ends with the mental commitment and nothing more.

Every journey starts with the first step so make the decision, carve out the time no matter how small, roll out your mat and step on it!

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Thrive Global – ‘More than Living. Thriving.’

 

Thrive Global Logo

According to recent research 81% of us now use a smartphone and time spent interacting with media on a phone, laptop, tablet or other digital device increases year on year.


We all know what a time drain anything to do with the internet can be and we’re all guilty of getting caught up wandering aimlessly online.  Even the most disciplined of us can get distracted by a well targeted article or advertisement.

Ironically, despite the digital help that is meant to simplify our lives, more and more of us a succumbing to a life of stress, anxiety and burnout.   There are not enough hours in the day.

Last week, Arianna Huffington (of the Huffington Post success) and author of bestselling books Thrive and The Sleep Revolution, launched her latest digital project, Thrive Global.  A digital resource to support you in living a balanced, healthy and inspired life.  The website tagline says it all – ‘More than living. Thriving.’

So, if we’re going to spend so much time online then we may as well be filling that time with quality content and learning how to make positive use out of all of the reams of information coming our way all day, every day.

‘when we prioritize our wellbeing, our decision making, our creativity, our productivity and our performance dramatically improve across the board’.

Focusing on health, well-being and performance, Thrive Global is packed with articles about thriving in life as well as apps, podcasts and e-courses all around the theme of self care both physically and mentally.

Take a look through the digital pages and you’ll find…..

  • journal.  Packed full of positive articles embracing a range of topics and filed under categories such as well-being, wisdom and working smarter.  Thrive Global nurtures the idea of creating balance in our lives by prioritizing our well-being and not living to a point of burnout.  Another great feature of the journal is the indicator at the top of each article describing how long a read it is.  You can make the decision to invest in 3 minutes of reading time or 20.
  • shop.  An opportunity to browse the latest health and well-being products, services and technology available to us.  The products here are selected specifically to support us in our quest for a healthy life.
  • apps&podcasts.  Digital aids and e-courses to help you live a more productive and, therefore,  less stressed life.

Arianna believes that ‘when we prioritize our wellbeing, our decision making, our creativity, our productivity and our performance dramatically improve across the board’.

Dip in and take a look and you will find something to inspire.  If you’re going to spend time online, which we all inevitably will continue to do,  this inspiring website is one well worth getting lost in.

Thrive Global – More than Living. Thriving.

Why do a 200hour Yoga Teacher Training?

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Why do a 200hour Yoga Teacher Training

Why do a 200hour yoga teacher training?

Yoga Teacher Training is a rapidly growing part of the yoga industry.  According to research by the Yoga Alliance there are two people in training to be a yoga teacher for every active teacher out there.  That’s a whole lot of interest but why would you do a 200hr Yoga Teacher Training?


 

Pick up any Yoga related magazine or attend a yoga studio and there is a very good chance that they will be promoting an upcoming yoga teacher training.

So why would you choose to do a 200hour yoga teacher training?

Contrary to the term ‘teacher training’, many students choose to enroll on a program not so much to be the teacher but more as a form of personal development.

“One of the common goals for embarking upon teacher training is the often cited desire to deepen one’s own practice”, says Felicia Tomasko, Editor of LA Yoga magazine

For some students the benefit of a training is the opportunity to study in depth, with a group of like minded people, the vast topic of yoga.  For others, it is a genuine desire to study & practice with a view to sharing their knowledge in a teaching capacity.  (A minimum 200hr certification is required, in most cases, if you’d like to teach)

Contrary to the term ‘teacher training’, many students choose to enroll on a program not so much to be the teacher but more as a form of personal development.

Katie Marshall graduated from a 200 hour teacher training in July 2016.  Originally her aspiration was to work in physical therapy but having been a regular yoga practitioner for five years she decided to pursue yoga teacher training.

Katie took her time to find the right training, waiting for the one that combined the three most important elements for her – course credibility, the teacher trainer and the cost.

Her main advice when choosing a training is to “find a teacher who inspires you and resonates with the way you view yoga”.  Katie found that teacher in Jessica Seabern of Yogaworks.

Timing for study is also important when choosing a program.  A teacher training will absorb a great deal of your time which is another aspect to consider when you have work, family and other life commitments.

“Trainings have a way of breaking you wide open and filling you with love and light”  Katie Marshall  200hr Yoga Graduate 

Once you’ve embarked upon a training that ticks all of the boxes for you, another of the great benefits you’ll discover is the community you become part of.  You’ll be spending many an hour with your fellow trainees on a journey where you’ll be both inspired and empowered but will also share challenging and vulnerable moments.

It can be life changing and life enhancing, as Katie found. “I learned how to create space and remind myself to breathe through challenging times, which translates off of the mat and into everyday life”.

So, whether you are looking to make teaching yoga your career or you just want to deepen your knowledge and understanding, a 200hr program is well worth considering.

As we approach a New Year, it is a time for new beginnings as we ponder our resolutions for 2017.  Regardless of where you want your yoga study to take you, a teacher training can offer you an uplifting and positive personal experience and, as Katie discovered, “trainings have a way of breaking you wide open and filling you with love and light”.

You can contact Katie by email: katiemarshallyoga@gmail.com

Facebook: @katiemarshallyoga

Dec/Jan issue of LA Yoga out now (Dec 2016)

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