How to do a good OM

Sit comfortably with your back straight.  Lift the ribcage and elongate the spine.

Breath quietly and calmly for a few breaths.

Take a lovely, long deep inhale – expand you ribcage out to the sides of the room.

On the exhalation begin chanting OM – there are 4 distinct parts –

ah

oh

mmm

silence

Pause.

Inhale and exhale.

Chant twice more.  (3 oms a day help you work, rest and play!)

Why do this???

Chanting OM helps you to elongate the breath – this has many benefits including fully oxygenating the tissues of the body and gentle massaging of the heart by the diaphragm.

The sound vibrations help to calm the nervous system.

The single focus helps to clear the mind of daily clutter.

Try it, you might like it!

Ouch! Low Back Pain? Yoga Can Help You

 

In a recent trail led by the University of York and funded by Arthritis Research UK of over 300 people, those offered a 12 week yoga course experienced a 30% greater improvement in back function than those offered GP care alone.

Back pain affects 80% of adults in their lifetime.  It’s the top reason for a visit to the GP and costs the UK over £5 billion a year as 4.9 million working days each year are lost due to back pain.

Half of the test group were given the yoga option received a book and CD as well as 12 weekly yoga classes. The participants were encouraged to practice at home in between classes and continue regularly once the classes had finished. The other half were treated in the typical GP way with a combination of painkillers, manipulation, hot/cold packs and exercise.

Medical Director of Arthritis Research UK Professor Alan Silman said: “We’re delighted that our trial has shown that yoga provides such positive benefits for people with chronic low back pain.  This extremely common condition cannot be managed with painkillers alone and there is an urgent need to have non-drug therapies that sufferers can utilise in their own home.  There are compelling explanations why yoga may be helpful and this trial lends powerful support to the wider use of this approach.”

‘A pragmatic multi-centred randomised controlled trial of yoga for chronic lower back pain’ was published in the Annals of Internal Medicine on 1 November 2011. See www.annals.org for more details.

1 hour Beginners Yoga classes, are suitable for beginners and people with back pain, are held in Tinwell and Preston under the instruction of British Wheel of Yoga Instructor Deborah King – please use ‘contact us’ for more information.

Clear skin shows your inner beauty

Looking after your skin (actually your largest organ) is probably the most important of your daily activities.  It’s not just about using the right shower gel or moisturiser.  We need to nurture our skin by drinking the right amount (of water and wine!), eating the right foods and doing appropriate exercises that can cleanse and detoxify.  Getting in touch with our skin is a great way to reacquaint yourself with your natural beauty so that your inner health shows with your glowing skin.

Our faces tell so much – and the eyes are said to be the windows of our soul!  Stress and worry can show themselves as  lines and embarrassment or anger may cause your cheeks to flush.  So it is no surprise that an imbalance of nutrition or crazy lifestyle will, at some point, reveal itself in your face.

So what is the secret of a supple, glowing, unblemished face?

Besides a healthy diet, lots of fresh air (don’t forget the sun cream) I would say that, if your health allows, inversions are a great way to boost the blood supply to your face.  Inversions – what am I on about?  A simple forward bend or downward dog, held for 3 to 5 breaths constitutes an inversion.  These postures alter the cardiovascular flow – encouraging more blood into the upper part of the torso and head.  (Do not attempt this though, if you have high blood pressure or eye problems.)

Sweating is great too – this encourages the pores to open and flush out the toxins.  Saunas or building up a sweat when exercising, dancing or doing yoga.

Finally – rest and relaxation.  There is nothing better than a good night’s sleep to give you a radiant complexion.  Relaxation exercises can help when taken on a regular basis – reducing the lines around the eyes and easing out any furrowed brows.

In my classes I try to incorporate all 3 of the above suggestions – as I believe a healthy complexion is  a great sign that all is well underneath and vice versa.

 

 

 

Yoga is a great stress buster

Yoga is a system of exercises that deliver total health through the balancing and strengthening of every system in the body.  This helps to prevent illness, injury and limit the effects of aging. Additionally each yoga posture (asana), combines the skills of concentration, patience, determination and self-control, which lead to increased mental clarity and reduced stress.

Yoga is the only exercise in the world that you can do at any age. There is always some posture that will improve your health, mind and soul.

Stress and strain are the causes of all chronic disease.  There is a growing body of eveidence to show that regular ‘de-stressing’ enables the bodies’ natural systems to harmonise and work more effectively – just as nature intended.

Yoga maintains the cell renewal rate, keeping you physically younger.

Without a doubt yoga is the most efficient maintenance’s system for the entire body. In just an hour, every system in the body is stimulated from the bones to the skin, leaving you invigorated and energised.

Do Yoga! Classes are held at Manton Village Hall by British Wheel of Yoga Instructor Deborah King.  Mondays 10 -11 & Tuesdays 6-7.  Please contact to book your place on deb@do-yoga.co.uk or 07973 508547

Sunny Salutations in Manton

The Salute to the Sun is probably the most famous sequence of yoga postures.  In Sanskrit it is called SURYA NAMASKARA and this practice has been handed down from the enlightened sages of the Vedic Age.

In ancient times the sun was worshipped as the life giving force.  Though I don’t worship the sun myself, after 3 weeks of rain it did feel like a blessing this morning when I awoke and saw the sun light flooding into my bedroom.

The versatility of this range of movements make it one of the most useful methods of making your body healthy, vigorous and active.  The group of postures can be performed slowly or quickly and are a very effective way of loosening up, stretching, massaging and toning all of the joints, muscles and internal organs of the body.

At my Manton classes we have been learning a simplified version with a variety of modifications to enable all levels of fitness to benefit from this practice.

 

Namaste!

Want to feel slim, calm & sexy?

If you want to start feeling better than ever why not give yoga a try?  Unlike most get-fit campaigns or diets yoga focuses on well-being and making you feel good rather than all sweaty and denying you of your favourite things.  There is a growing body of scientific research to show that yoga is beneficial for many complaints and even the NHS is beginning to take the practice seriously.  See their web page http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/fitness/Pages/yoga.aspx which states “Yoga is now commonplace in leisure centres, health clubs, schools, hospitals and surgeries.”

A typical yoga class will be split into 3 sections – focus and warm up, posture practice and finally breath work and relaxation.  The focus and warm up part helps you to concentrate your mind on what you are doing and warm up the joints and muscles of the body in preparation for the posture work – like warrior or tree pose which I’m sure you will associate yoga with.

The postures will be taught to you for specific benefits – you may be working with the warrior poses to build strength in your limbs or you may practice ‘salute to the sun’ which is a flow of postures one into another.  Some poses twist the torso and spine to flush the internal organs with fresh blood and ease out any tension in the spine.  Other poses are balances which require 100% focus and concentration.  Some poses will rejuvenate and invigorate and others will settle the body ready for relaxation.  It will depend on your teacher, the time of day and goals of your practice.

Finally the breathing and relaxation section of the class will assist you to bring your body and mind to stillness and clear it of stress.  This allows the body to function as it was originally designed to – from the very cellular level renewing and detoxifying in the way nature intended.  The relaxed body will then be carefully awakened with some deep breaths to ensure that you are ok to leave the class – back to complete awareness, not drowsy but alive with renewed energy and vigour.

How does this make you slim, calm and sexy?  The posture work elongates the muscles and defines the torso and limbs.  The relaxation reduces stress, reduces wrinkles and makes you calm.  Now you have a slinky body and have stopped shouting at the kids, you look attractive and feel happy about yourself – et voilà – bring on the passion!

British Wheel of Yoga Instructor, Deborah King runs classes in Manton Village Hall on Monday mornings 10 – 11 and Tuesday evenings 6 -7.  Classes are strictly limited – please book your place in advance on 07973508547 or email deb@do-yoga.co.uk