Dynamic, Difficult and Disagreeable Postures

Dear Yogis

Next time Tim Feldmann is in the country PLEASE come with me! He’s such an amazing teacher and totally approachable and relatable... and funny and a joy to be with. He is Danish by birth and has spent so much time in India that his intonation and his head movements are very Indian. It’s so nice.

He says that what we are trying to discover in yoga, according to Patanjali, is abhyasa vairagyabhyam tat nirodhah - thought patterns are mastered through practice and non-attachment. Mastering thought patterns is what we are trying to do; our mat is the laboratory. Onto our Bunsen Burner the ingredients are the lengthened the breath and a stilled mind mixed with the combustible factor of dynamic, difficult and disagreeable postures. We test the mind as we try to do as Patanjili says, master its activity.

Here’s the interesting thing; the whole reason for putting the mind into stress tests. On the mat, we can fail. It’s ok if we either achieve the postures or struggle or nose dive. But what kind of person are we going to be when this happens in life? Will success make us egotistical. Will failure make us morose? Do we give up? How will we treat ourselves? How will we treat others?  Life gives us all kinds of combustible ingredients which make it a struggle to stay centred. Tim says: ‘Our body is a vehicle to a deeper understanding of our self’.

Kythera Retreats

Here is the editorial welcome to the Sumer Edition of Kythera’s newspaper: ‘When the ‘merry-go-round of modern living has left you feeling emotionally nauseated, let Kythera take you into her hushed embrace, offering her soothing time warp of old-world charms that follow the beat of the natural world. The rock walls scattered throughout the island carry the stories of long gone generations, while the dramatic cliffs and ravines stand silent witness to the subtle simplicity of life itself unfolding.’ Romantic souls, eh! One person writes in the paper: ‘The only time I truly feel alive is when I’m in Kythera. There’s no easy way to describe the metamorphosis, the almost tangible shedding of stress that occurs once I’m on the island’. YES!!! That’s why I hold the retreats there! If you’d like to come you can find the retreat pages on my website.

Home Studio

Next week is the final week before a two-week break when I am holding the retreats in Kythera. You can see what’s available here for next week (I update this before posting this email.)  You can book here. There are teachers in Ealing you could try out while I’m in Greece. Cath Barnes-Holt is an Iyengar teacher at Triyoga Ealing who also teaches in West Ealing and Northfields. First class free with Ladan Soltani  in Ealing Town Hall and West Ealing. Also free are classes in Lululemon in Westfield, Shepherds Bush every Sunday at 10.00. You can see their events on here. For your Ashtanga needs go to Zeena Kalisperides at Yoga West – you just can’t go wrong with her. Wind down your weekend with Ruth Voon for Yin on a Sunday evening at Triyoga Ealing.


I have signed up for Yoga for Athletes with Sarah Ramsden. One workshop is called Mind Mastery for Enhanced Performance and the day-long one is Short, Stiff + Tight! They are at Triyoga Shoreditch, October 05th and 06th. (As a newly qualified yoga teacher I took an expensive Yoga Sport Science course which left me absolutely none the wiser! I have since learnt how to work with an athlete via the tools that we have in every Ashtanga, Iyengar and Yin class.)

Yoga in the news

The Telegraph tells us that: ‘Yoga could be as effective as a pill at cutting blood pressure, study suggests’. The study is a school project carried out by a 16-year-old on 60 volunteers who had raised blood pressure. “His paper, backed by the Cambridge Cardiac Care Centre in Canada, was presented at the European Society of Cardiology conference in Munich.  “Blimey! My school wasn’t like that! He is quoted as saying: ‘A large proportion of the benefit could be attributed to deep breathing.’

Here’s something else that might help! The Metro tells us that  Listening to yoga music right before bed may be good for your heart. Anxiety levels dropped significantly after participants listened to yoga music, as opposed to pop or no music, showed the study that was

From the Scotsman: 'Tough guys' can learn to be real men through yoga’. It’s about the Art of Living Foundation programmes for teaching yoga to prisoners, biker gangs, street gangs and violent offenders.

All human life is here! Have a lovely September weekend.

Tim Feldmann Squeeze Uranus.png