Partnering up

Yesterday in a workplace yoga class I teach we practiced some partner yoga. As a lover of partner yoga myself you would think I’d teach it more often so why don’t I?

Well there are a few reasons.

Firstly not all students are comfortable practicing with someone else. Many people come to yoga to take their awareness inward, to have some time to themselves to connect and reflect. Asking them to share that time can be a little confronting especially if it is with a complete stranger.

Secondly within any of my classes there are usually a range of students with different levels of experience, different body shapes and sizes (this can be a factor as with many partner practices you need someone about the same size and shape as you) and different levels of flexibility or restrictions due to injuries or simply individual body types. Trying to fond compatible partners for everyone is sometimes a challenge.

Thirdly there is a time factor as partner yoga takes up more time. There is naturally a bit of chatter when students are interacting, many postures require both people to do something different so we repeat them so they can swap positions. I usually need to demonstrate first then assist a few people and time flies when you are having fun and partner yoga is fun!

These and other reasons can influence whether or not I include partner yoga in a class. It might sound at this stage like it’s not worth all of the trouble so why do it? Well to balance out the list above here are some of the advantages of partner yoga.

It helps to create sangha, a sense of community in the yoga class. I often hear from new students how welcome they feel when they come into one of my classes, that is because we have a beautiful sangha. Before and after class students chat with each other and me and what makes it special is, unlike many other conversations we have, it feels safe. There is a sense of trust and when we ask how someone is we really want to know. If someone has had a rough week they can talk about it without feeling judged or being interrupted or having someone else try to outdo them by having had a worse week. I could write a whole post on this so better stop now and get back to partner yoga.

Practices feel different when you do them with someone else, you support and assist each other and communicate to explore postures in a different way to doing them by yourself. Often people experience a deeper level of the posture or a very different experience when practicing with a partner.

It is so much fun! There is always laughter and a lovely energy in the room when people are working together on their yoga practice. I am a great advocate of not taking it all to seriously and partner yoga definitely helps us to accept our own and each others strengths and weaknesses.

So for these and many other reasons when the stars align and the group is ready and suitable I love to include some partner yoga. It can still be confronting for some but it can take them out of their comfort zone in a good way. We always end up back on our own mats in relaxation taking the time to bring that awareness back in.

If you have the opportunity to practice some partner yoga I highly recommend it.

Love and light,

Belinda

xxx

Beat those Winter Blues workshop earlybird special ends this Saturday so book now to take advantage of the savings!

 

Why are you here?

This is a big question, or quite a simple one depending on how you view it. For today, lets look at it in a small way. Why are you where you are right now, reading these words? It can be a nice exercise in awareness to reflect on the many factors that have brought you into a place, an activity, a moment.

What were you looking for when you subscribed to my blog or visited my website? Did you find what that was or is it a little different to what you expected? How do you feel about that? You might have searched for just this, been referred by a friend or stumbled on it by chance but either way here you are.

I’d love to hear from some of you what your responses are to this enquiry, please feel free to leave a comment about how you got here.

I find this practice very helpful for those times when I’m not sure where I am headed or my pathway takes an unexpected turn leaving me not quite where I expected to be. Rather than getting caught up in wanting to be somewhere else I take a moment to think about all of the factors that directed me, sometimes seemingly by chance, into the space I find myself in. Often that reflection begins to make sense and help me to realize exactly why I am there and what I can learn from the situation.

Whatever it was that brought you here I hope that what I offer, my musings, my reflections, my anecdotes, are in some way helpful and relevant to you and your life. I now find myself reflecting on why I am here, sharing my life and my journey with people, some of whom I know but most of whom are complete strangers. My life has been a series of twists and turns and ten years ago I would not have believed I would be a yoga teacher and writer with a website and blog and a community of lovely students. Yet here I am, on this path that evolved sometimes by choice and others seemingly by chance. What I love about my path right now is that it feels right, like I am where I am meant to be. There have been times in my life that I haven’t felt that at all and I have learned to trust it, even when it means taking a risk or stepping out of my comfort zone. I have done a lot of that to get here, now, writing these words and it is scary at times but also the best way to learn and grow and find where you are meant to be…

May your path lead to happiness, here and now and into the future.

Love and light,

Belinda

xxx

*Beat those Winter Blues workshop earlybird special ends on May 31st so to take advantage of the discount book and pay soon by following the link!

Tasmania

I am fresh back from my family holiday in Tasmania feeling wonderfully renewed and invigorated. Todays post is short but I will share some of my photos from the trip.

Fairy toadstools

We had a wonderful time visiting relatives, seeing the sights and, everyone in my family’s favorite, bushwalking.

It is so healing and refreshing to just get out there, into nature, and soak up the freshness of the air, the sounds and sights of the trees, rocks, wildlife and landscape. The warmth of the sun which we appreciated even more after the chilly nights and foggy mornings and the touch of the breeze on our faces.

Marriotts Falls

Often in the middle of a walk we would just stop, be quiet and soak it all in for a moment or three or stop to hug one of the beautiful, gigantic trees though with all of us together we’d struggle to get our arms around some of them.

tall tree

It is wonderful to go on a holiday and enjoy these things but as that is not always possible we can do the same to a lesser degree in our own back yard or local park. In Melbourne we are very lucky to have trees and gardens almost everywhere. You don’t have to go far to find a park with a good walking track or two.

See you out there sometime!

Love and light,

Belinda

xxx

* Don’t forget to give yourself a little holiday, a yoga workshop is a great way to do this and my Beat those Winter Blues workshop is coming up. Earlybird discounts apply if you book and pay by the end of May, more details here.