Anyone who has been to my yoga classes, visited my website or spoken to me in person will know that I am a huge advocate of a yoga practice called Yoga Nidra. Many of you may think 'yoga what?' It is a strangely well-kept secret of the yoga world but one that I am on a mission to share with as many people as possible.
Loosely translated, Yoga Nidra means 'Yogic Sleep' or 'the sleep of the yogis'. Sounds fab right - well it is. Yoga Nidra is basically a form of guided relaxation or guided meditation traditionally practiced lying down. In practical terms what happens is you lie down on the floor and listen to either a yoga teacher or recording o...
I was introduced to this piece of writing a few years ago on one of my Yoga training courses with the lovely Uma Dinsmore-Tuli of Womb Yoga. She read this blessing out after a Yoga Nidra and I thought it was a really wonderful piece. I occasionally return to this myself but also share this in workshops and classes. So today I would like to share this piece with you here on my blog.
When the rhythm of the heart becomes hectic,
Time takes on the strain until it breaks;
Then all the unattended stress falls in
On the mind like an endless, increasing weight,
The light in the mind becomes dim.
Things you could take in your stride before
I have been reading a lot about sleep recently - studying books, articles, research and browsing online forums. Now in general I have always been what I would say is a good sleeper and a deep sleeper, but the arrival of a new baby has pushed my own sleep patterns all over the place and made me really appreciate what others feel when they suffer from sleep deprivation, insomnia or other sleep-related issues. Lack of sleep seems to be a common problem with students in my yoga classes and something I'm not sure we place quite enough importance on here in the UK.
I am interested in ways to catch up on sleep (yoga nidra!), what happens to the body...
As a new mum I decided it was a good idea to try to establish a bedtime routine for my baby girl. It was a very loose one at first when she was just a few months old but by 5-6 months we had a set pattern 90% of the time that we followed and still do today. And why did we do this? To help her get to sleep, stay asleep and get into a good sleeping pattern. Logical really.
Now I know that not all babies stick to their routine or respond to it (sometimes the phrase EPIC FAIL springs to mind) but there is plenty of research that it is a good idea to create a bedtime routine for a new baby. It is also a commonly discussed issue.
I mean truly rest, with simply the intention of doing nothing other than recharging the batteries, relaxing the mind and renewing your energy levels?
Now let me state here that resting doesn't include a hobby or activity where you are 'doing something that relaxes you' such as reading, exercising or watching TV. It also doesn't include the times when you go to bed and sleep or crash out on the sofa. I mean just stopping. I mean sitting or lying down and doing nothing but resting for the sake of resting.
So how often do you choose to find stillness and properly give yourself permission to rest?
For many new mums, myself included, lack of sleep and exhaustion are a challenging problem in the early months of caring for a new baby.
Having reached a point in the latter stages of pregnancy where I was waking up to four times a night to pee, I thought I was pretty good with broken sleep and tiredness… Oh, how wrong could I be? Now several months into my journey into motherhood and I have a permanent dazed look about me and long for the day where I don’t feel like a crazed zombie craving copious amounts of coffee and cake!
Now lack of sleep, a crying baby and nighttime feeding of course vary from mother to mother. Some babies s...
Due to the success of the First Friday 'Relaxed Yoga and Yoga Nidra' sessions, I have now booked more dates in for early 2018.
These special classes will continue to be on the first Friday of the month at 7-8pm, and give you this wonderful opportunity to relax, unwind and recharge the batteries ready for your weekend!
There will however be a new venue in 2018 - the Lye Hall at St Johns Memorial Hall in Woking. This is a lovely little hall with air conditioning /heating and plenty of parking in the car park opposite.
These classes are such a great way to unwind and find stillness - the opposite to most of our busy lives. Just bring a blanket an...