We took the opportunity to slow down and really give space to our yoga practice and to go deeper. Each practice was longer than a usual class giving more time to delve, spend time exploring poses or pauses for longer and gaining familiarity with the ‘health mantra’ to cultivate our health and nourishment.
It could sound self-indulgent to spend a weekend like this, but truly it isn’t. Each of us needs nourishment so that we can show up in our everyday lives with more energy, kindness, patience and good humour and do all the things we need to do better. The hope is that periods of deeper practice rekindle the love of regular practice to inspire you to continue to nourish yourself regularly, to show up on your mat and avoid running on empty for too long.
The interest and discovery of breath was a real take-away for many. The workshop seemed to gravitate towards this through the interest of everyone there. It was so great to have time to experiment with the effects of breathwork in our practice and to understand how it can profoundly change our state and effect how we feel energetically, physically and mentally.
Working with the breath takes patience, I remember working with a breathing technique for 5 years (!) before I finally got it and was able to gain the benefits from it. Yes it was worth it! It can be such a useful and vital aspect of ourselves to cultivate.
The feedback from the weekend has been wonderful.
“Beautiful house, gardens, great food and very friendly. I enjoyed it so much and learned so much about the breath which I think has transformed my practice and I'll take forwards. I loved how relaxed it all was and a perfect gentle rhythm to the days. Thank you so much.”
“An outstanding weekend”
“A fabulous weekend. Feeling relaxed and grounded. Thank you.”
I’m already looking forward to the next one and will be planning it soon. Watch this space as the last one has been fully booked since last December.
In the meantime, keep yourself nourished, including through your yoga practice.
I have weekly classes which keep you practicing reguarly, offer 121s to support you with starting or developing your home practice, have online resources to help you practice in a fruitful way, and some nourishing Autumn workshops available soon.
Please get in touch if I can help or give me a ring if you want any guidance on your yoga practice or getting started.
So what happened?
She moved quickly and breathed as she was used to. She would finish before everyone else, and look around bored. And she missed a fair amount of what the class was offering, the class simply didn't suit where she was.
Here are a few things she missed:
A chance to leave behind the 'rushing' that makes up most of the rest of our life.
Allowing time to not just 'do' a yoga pose or breath, but to actually embody, inhabit and Be in a pose and find a fuller connection to every single breath.
The increased challenge of moving slowly. The body has to sustain the movement for longer, the breath requires more focus as it is so different to our habitual pace, and there is less chance to escape into easier bits of the practice.
If we normally breath at around 15-breaths per minute in our everyday breath, in a typical sun salutation you might find yourself at 6 or 7 breaths a minute. This is great and offers a lot. But then what would happen if you went to 3 or 4 breaths a minute?
It feels really different, it requires 10X focus, the nervous system loves it, the body has to slow down to more control in each pose is required which takes more skill, and you notice way more.
Needless to say, the after-class chat went along the lines of: do I do any other types of class where she can work harder and feel more challenged.
I'm not the right teacher for her, and if I was, my beginners class would be a great starting point so that she could established a good foundation of movement and breath.
Not every teacher is the right one for every student. You need to be met where you are, and engaged in the practice that they are compelled to teach. I wish her well and hope she finds a teacher that can catch her attention and that she can really learn from.
Founder of YogaSpace,
More about Clara >