During hot weather, getting to yoga class can be really hard. Muggy, sticky weather might rob you of your yoga intentions. It turns out that the body has seasonal needs as well as different requirements at different times of the day. In cool mornings and in the cooler months Vinyasa, Rocket, Power and Ashtanga are perfect to build heat in the body. Ayurvedic science tells us that our ‘Doshas’ (Pitta is fire, Vata is wind and Kapha is water) need to be balanced and in the Pitta season we should try balance the fire energy through our practice and our diet.
Practice in the morning if you can, before the heat of the day rises. In a fast-paced or demanding yoga classes shift your focus to a gentle and patient attitude to the practice. If you remember that over-heating brings about moods such as irritability, aggression, competitiveness and self-criticism, then consciously let any such tempers go. Intentionally focus to an internal, meditative, in-the-moment practice. Perhaps in some of the practice such as Sun Salutations you could close your eyes. Remember: Summertime, and the living is easy!
Ayurvedic advice for diet to balance the Pitta Dosha is to eat cooling foods: water melon, fruits and veggies, leafy salads. Avoid hot, spicy, greasy, fried foods and avoid dehydrating drinks… coffee! Very hot days are when a cooling raw food vegan option becomes welcome. Pranayama can come into play as well. There is a breathing exercise called ‘Sitali’. It’s a cooling breath you can employ after a hard practice or simply to reduce fatigue and cool down. You stick your tongue out and curl it (we used to do that in the school playground) and breathe as if sucking up through a straw. Hold it; it’s cool! Then breathe out through the nose. Here’s Ekhart Yoga giving a demonstration.
I have had a few cancellations and there are places on both Greek retreats. I have added pictures of our accommodation to the website. Take a look… but please get in touch before booking flights if you would like to come. I really would like to introduce as many people as possible to this corner of the world where the soul can breathe! Take a look at the retreat pages on my website for information about the Greek retreats in September and the October 12th-15th Happiness Retreat in South Devon!
It’s such a joy to welcome new yogis to my little Home Studio and watch how, by the end of the class, people all seem to have known each other for ages. Yoga is magic! I have added the Thursday 6.00 Ashtanga class next week to see if the demand is back. You can see what’s available here. (I update this before posting this email.) You can book here.
I’ve been thoroughly enjoying Iyengar classes at Triyoga Ealing. One of the brilliant teachers there, Khaled Kendsi, will be taking a workshop on July 28th, 2.00-4.30, next weekend, with all the details and precision that helps deepen your understanding and practice in any style of yoga.
Yoga in the news
This is a lovely article after the initial word games: Yoga is not Indian, says Jaggi Vasudev at a UN meeting. This was said at an event "Conversation with Masters: Yoga for the Achievement of Sustainable Development Goals” We get a little insight into yoga at the UN! Liechtenstein's Permanent Representative Christian Wenaweser conducts yoga lessons for diplomats and others at the UN. Masud Bin Momen, the Permanent Representative of Bangladesh said it cured his sciatica.
The Evening Standard advertises that: Tate Modern will host a series of yoga brunches this summer. Classes are one hour on Saturday mornings and you get great views of the Thames and St Paul's. What the article doesn’t tell you is that it’s £25 Yoga and Brunch and £41 if you include The Picasso 1932Exhibition. Nice for a present!
Wow, look at this! Leisure Opportunities reports that: More Yoga entrepreneurs plan 100 studios for London. “Entrepreneurs Shamir Sidhu and Daniel Marin are aiming to build the UK’s dominant yoga chain with their “no fuss” budget brand, More Yoga”. No reception desks or showers but as much of a variety of yoga as possible. And for venues they say; ‘Former betting shops and retail outlets work really well. Our studios enhance the high street and bring more footfall."’ Full article in Health Club Management.