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Welcome to the Yoga Studio Journal

Welcome to the Yoga Studio Journal

there are no classes running at the studio at the moment, but i hope you find inspiration for practice here on the journal.

“Yoga is not an escape from life but an approach to living.”
T K V Desikachar


peace

peace

today is International Day of Peace.

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after a while

after a while

as the year moves on, we can use the breath to help us prepare for autumn. thank you to Sandra Sabatini for inspiring this practice.

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this morning

this morning

ideas for a morning practice

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book

book

a new book suggestion.

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when you pause

when you pause

pools of silence

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when you breathe out

when you breathe out

breath bathing and a short reading from J Krishnamurti

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when you breathe in

when you breathe in

a small and certain resurrection

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silences

silences

noticing the silent spaces in your breath

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experiment

experiment

welcome back to the journal - it's good to be in touch with you again.

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green madrigal

a poem for today, to take to the woods

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revision

revision

keeping a clear head

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earth

a practice inspired by mental health awareness week

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idling along

"Salute thyself: see what thy soul doth wear... And tumble up and down what thou findst there." George Herbert

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spring walking

spring walking

"as I walked with the budburst and the flushing of trees..."

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savouring

savouring

how yoga can help us to savour the world

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closure

closure

what a wonderful time we have had...

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relax

relax

writing on 29th march 2019 - this picture seemed apt!

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soft

soft

"But what we really need for entering life fully is a soft body. A soft body allows itself to be penetrated by life; it remains open, accessible, receptive, available to the present moment, and agile in responding to events. A soft body is poised for a relationship with the world around us." Tina Welling.

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release

release

a note about re-leasing breath

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acrobatic

a video treat for you...

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window

window

"light has the potential to make one see and understand something differently." John Pawson

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mighty mosses

mighty mosses

III 33 "Anything can be understood. With each attempt fresh and spontaneous understanding arises." (trans. TKV Desikachar)

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stop

stop

a word about stopping

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posture of the month

posture of the month

a posture for february - mountain

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moss

moss

the first of a series of moss themed posts...

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wild geese

wild geese

listen to mary oliver reading her poem wild geese.

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summary

summary

a short summary of a recent article by Bill Wood.

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posture of the month

posture of the month

a posture for january - two foot support

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midnight

midnight

the end of the year, the end of an era and the murmur of new beginnings

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sun

bringing light on the shortest day of the year, the gāyatrī mantra is a chant for illuminating, for learning and for changing

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web

web

on yoga teachers

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trust

trust

fostering trust in our own practice

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sandra sabatini

sandra sabatini

a short video inspired by sandra's teaching

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peace

peace

a new translation

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behind closed eyes

behind closed eyes

a re-imagining of an ancient practice - śaṇmukhī mudrā

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footnote

footnote

recently we have been focussing on our feet.

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beauty

beauty

yoga is beautiful - exquisite - and we can all touch this in our practice.

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clearing

clearing

"i took a walk in the woods and came out taller than the trees" thoreau

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a good ending

a good ending

"the end is where we start from." t s eliot

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sound

sound

this week i have been reminded of the power of sound.

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pause

pause

"in that space in between there is silence... more than anything else silence...and space." sandra sabatini

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alistair, cricket, and the yoga of action

alistair, cricket, and the yoga of action

what makes a good cricketer, makes a good yogi.

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welcome back

welcome back

the new term of yoga classes and journal posts

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more inspiration

nature - rosebay willow herb

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inspiration

dancing - just the ticket!

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crisis

crisis

the yoga studio has been supporting the homelessness charity Crisis for a few years now...

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feet

feet

"i may be small, but my toes are mighty" said the madagascan green gecko!

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space

space

yoga helps us feel the space in each movement and moment

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cooling breath

cooling breath

a cooling, gentle breath for the hot weather

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relaxing into silence

relaxing into silence

relaxing into silence with a peaceful breath - practising the heart of yoga

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books

books

some of you have asked for me to recommend some good yoga books. here is a selection...

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delicate

delicate

i notice that breathing softly frees us for infinitely delicate practices

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no time

no time

in yoga there is no time at all

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early morning sounds

early morning sounds

there is a fresh presence in the early morning - it's a good time to practise.

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more… wonderful!

more… wonderful!

we have been practising warrior posture this week, experimenting with taking the head back as Mr Iyengar taught.

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soft belly

soft belly

"as the body yields all efforts and holdings the infinite within is revealed." YS II 47

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soon

soon

a hopeful poem for an unseasonably wet weekend. happy easter.

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soft breath

soft breath

"breathing isn't really something that you do but something that you witness as it happens." eckhart tolle

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otter

otter

in one class this week the discussion turned to otters - yes really, it did!

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being somewhere

being somewhere

in yoga i am not trying to get somewhere - i am being somewhere.

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cold comfort

cold comfort

a practice to bring warmth and comfort this weekend...

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seasons

seasons

"the challenge for humankind, in the twenty-first century, is to find humility and re-connect with nature." satish kumar

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a brave softening

a brave softening

here is a half term project for the faithful ujjāyī breathers amongst you.

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a saturday practice

a saturday practice

(also very suitable for sundays, mondays, tuesdays, wednesdays, thursdays and fridays...!)

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over and over again

over and over again

Some people think that they are in some way extra bad at meditating! “No - you don’t understand. MY mind just doesn’t settle - EVER.”

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compassion

compassion

practice blossoms when it moves “from urgency to patience, from striving to being, from harshness to gentleness, and from reactivity to skilful action.” donna farhi

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butterflies

butterflies

the cobbler or tailor posture (baddha konāsana - bound angle posture) - is sometimes called the butterfly.

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reopening

reopening

“nothing reopens the springs of love so fully as absence” Anthony Trollope

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winter wellbeing

winter wellbeing

today is the shortest day of the year. we are in the very heart of winter and many people feel at a low ebb in these darkest days.

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a december practice

a december practice

stand - feel your feet as if they are sinking into the first snowfall - deeply

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welcome

welcome

welcome to the revised yoga studio website.

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dawdling

dawdling

as she began her tenure as the children’s laureate in the summer, Lauren Child, actively encouraged children to do nothing, to stare into space, ‘to dawdle and dream’.

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breath

breath

“Be aware of your breathing. Notice how this takes attention away from your thinking and creates space.” Eckhart Tolle

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magic

magic

I found this lovely picture the other day and thought... 

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a poem for the equinox

a poem for the equinox

today is the autumn equinox. here is the wonderful alice oswald reading her poem 'almost as transparent', written for today.

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velvet

velvet

during my years of study with Paul, he often suggested a new practice at this time of year, wisely waiting until the season itself suggested change.

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practice

practice

stare into the space of your body - what do you find there?

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seaweed

seaweed

knowing stillness in movement and movement in stillness helps us to know a posture, ourselves and our surroundings more deeply.

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advice for today

advice for today

smile love and be kind

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finding your feet

finding your feet

sit comfortably and lift one foot. look at your foot

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tune in

tune in

whether you are practising at home or at the studio – tune in carefully and see how you feel.

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the light touch of yoga

the light touch of yoga

a year or so ago I wrote a post entitled 'no dig' yoga, suggesting a lighter approach to practice. as the interest in ‘no dig’ gardening grows, I can’t help drawing other parallels with yoga practice.

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yoga every day

yoga every day

something like this may help…

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yoga nature

yoga nature

ancient traditions, including the Indian traditions that gave rise to yoga, understood that there is a principle of life which drives our human and non human lives, to propagate, to grow, and to survive. yoga calls this prāṇa. a Sanskrit word meaning ‘that which goes everywhere’ it has come to mean both breath and the dynamic bio-energy of the universe.

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strong and effortless

strong and effortless

in āsana practice - if we wait, watchfully, we learn how the breath moves the body, shapes it, opens and clears it - we can be strong and effortless.

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vasiṣṭhāsana – side plank

vasiṣṭhāsana – side plank

vasiṣṭhāsana is a side opening hand balance and not one of the ‘bread and butter’ postures that are central to our practice.  But it can be good to challenge the body sometimes.

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re-opening

re-opening

the Studio re-opens today, the Spring equinox, after the birth of Grace last week.

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heart

heart

“The heart knows no boundaries.” T K V Desikachar

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yoga body

yoga body

yoga teaches a type of work for the body - how to move, settle, breathe, fold, spiral, stretch and extend in a particular way.

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simplify

simplify

Our life is frittered away by detail. Simplify, simplify. Thoreau

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not at all excited

not at all excited

recently in the late evening class on a Thursday, we have spoken about the current fashion in language for exaggerating and whitewashing experiences...

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peace

peace

“Nothing can bring you peace but yourself.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

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mind’s eye

mind’s eye

coax thoughts backwards - step back - step back
drift backwards from your edges - settle centreing

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posture names

posture names

yoga postures are named in the ancient language of Sanskrit. In the west we have also given them names, which are often not translations.

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manipura

manipura

"manipura cakra is as radiant and bright as the sun dominating the dawn.” Gheraṇḍa Saṃhitā

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even if I knew…

even if I knew…

“Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree.” Martin Luther

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core of peace

core of peace

“Deep in the noise there was a core of peace…” John Betjeman

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settling into silence

settling into silence

Yoga is the settling of the mind into silence.” Translation of YS C1 v 2 - Alistair Shearer

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silent space

silent space

"...I increasingly realise there is an interior dimension to silence, a sort of stillness of heart and mind which is not a void but a rich space." Sara Maitland

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