How to stay physically and mentally healthy over summer

Summertime in Australia can be a magnificent time – beach holidays, joyous barbeques, crimson sunsets late in the evenings; an all round wonderful time of year. But with the stress of Christmas, the tensions of seeing family and the general busyness we can forego our most important asset we have – our wellbeing.

We’ve gathered our inspirational teachers together and asked them to give us a peek into their summer lives and how they managed to stay healthy – both physically and mentally – during this time.

Here’s how our staff love to stay healthy physically over summer:

This is the season to simply slow down, absorb the sun and enjoy nature’s bounty. adelaide summer activitiesSpend time outdoors – mother nature has a lot to offer us! Teresa

My home brewed kombucha is my personal life saver. Amy R

To keep healthy during this time of year, I love walking in the sunshine. Charlton

With the heat of the day it can be easier to stay indoors and get complacent about exercise. I like to walk early in the morning before the heat of the day, yoga (goes without saying) and paddle boarding. Being active releases endorphins the feel good hormones so you actually feel physically fitter and more energised. Staying hydrated is a big one over the summer. Nothing more refreshing than ice cold water with mint, cucumber and lemon which is a great antioxidant. Sue

Exercise early in the morning, make use of the warmer evenings for spending more beach yoga adelaidetime outside to relax, reconnect and to have fun. Eat lots of cooling foods such as watermelon, cucumber, mint, fennel, coriander, rose and aloe. Reducing the amount of alcohol you drink is also a great idea as it heats your blood and is rather dehydrating. Amy L

Here’s how our staff love to stay mentally healthy over summer:

Relax and breathe! Take time to slow down and enjoy not just every day, but each and every moment. Teresa

To keep my mind calm and stable during periods of stress and to balance out the highs and lows, I always turn to meditation. Charlton

Meditation, meditation and meditation! And it doesn’t necessarily have to be sitting. Meditation is simply single pointed focus so being mindful of each task can help keep that “monkey mind” at bay and as a result, reduce stress.

‘I won’t lie that a nice drop of red wine or a cool gin and tonic with a favorite magazine or good book gives me mental space.’ Sue

To keep as mentally healthy as possible, I like to get outdoors, preferably barefoot, adelaide summerheading to the beach, picnic in a park or a bush walk. Amy R

The main thing that I normally recommend is: do something small once each day.

This is a guideline that I live by for both my physical and mental wellbeing. We often get caught up in the idea of being active meaning that you have to do a workout for 90 minutes or meditation requiring us to sit perfectly still for half an hour.

While these are good too, time is precious and often fleeting – especially at this time of year. So we often need to practice the little things when we can. Wake up in the morning and doing a few rounds of Sun Salutes is just as valid as practicing a 75 minute class of hot yoga or going for a walk around the block will be enough to get some energy moving through your body.

If things seem to be getting too much (which they so often do), take just five minutes for yourself and do nothing but be still. You can sit in a chair, stand overlooking your backyard or just take the time to fully appreciate that morning cup of coffee, rather than drinking it as fast as you can and then rushing to get on with your day.

Sometimes we surprise ourselves and these few minutes encourage us to then do a little more and then… a little more again. Other times it’s enough and we can then move on, but those few moments will echo through the rest of our day. Simon

Yoga has been scientifically proven to be advantageous for your physical and mental health. We’re beginner friendly and very supportive. Try a class today.

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Get to Know Your yogafusion – Manny Cebo

Meet the instructor – Mannyadelaide yoga

When did your yoga journey start? And why did you start?

My yoga journey began in the early 90s when I was in primary school. My mum bought me a book called A Child’s Garden of Yoga by Baba Hari Dass. It contained two meditations as well as an introduction to asana practice. I voice recorded Continue reading

Mudras

A mudra is a Hindu or Buddhist gesture or attitude that is devotional and emotional in prayer mudra adelaidenature, almost like symbolically saying to the Universe, ‘here, I’m declaring this to you’.

Mudras link pranic flow to the greater Universal energy, they expand chakras and can awaken Kundalini.

They are said to alter your mood and perception, bring about deep awarenesss and unite the layers of the physical, mental and emotional body together. They can be used in conjunction with asana, meditation and pranayama and even in classic Indian dance moves. There are five groups of mudras: hasta (hands), mana (head), kaya (postural), bandha (lock), adhara (perineal). The more commonly practised being hasta or hand mudras. Continue reading

From the Inside: a beginner’s experience

One of our beloved yogafusioners, Karina Natt, has been brave enough to share her experiences of becoming a student of hot yoga with us. Karina has been coming to the studio since 3 December 2013 and has never looked back!

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Image via PopSugar

Letting go

I began with yogafusion during a personally and professionally emotional time and I was also suffering physically with a painful hip issue, so it was an interesting way to begin. Continue reading

Why You Should Never Bring Your Phone to Yoga

Be honest – what’s the first thing you do when you leave the tranquility of your yoga class? If you said check your phone, you’re not alone. At one time, we’re all guilty of this bliss breaking habit.  yoga phone

If you think about what your smart phone symbolises, what it holds, what it can do, the reach it has then everytime you pick up your phone within seconds of leaving the mat, you’re telling yourself that it’s IMPERATIVE that you connect back into that world.

The hour or two that you are in a yoga class is a dedication to the self. It’s a time when you are saying ‘yes self, I am giving you my all right now – all my focus, attention and effort’. And then we leave class and abruptedly retract that dedication via our actions.

Consider the benefits of holding that peace and stillness achieved in class or practise if it were to extend into every area of your life and not just for those minutes you spend on the mat. Imagine the richness that would permeate your job, time with family and friends and even your relaxation time alone. How often has your “yoga buzz” been destroyed by checking your phone after class and realising there is an urgent email that will cause you more work when you hit the office first thing in the morning? Or that there are people complaining on Facebook?

It would be hypocritical and remiss of us to demand you never connect with your phone but we’d like to remind you of the value of using it mindfully and allowing yourself time to have breaks away from it.

There are lots of benefits of having a mobile device that can connect to all areas in your life that lives in your pocket and sometimes, we’d be lost without them but notice how liberated you feel without having a phone to check or demand your attention. What other things fill that space where your attention is more free and available?

Allow the benefits of the class to be with you in its fullness, in your life (off the mat) and into your next experience. After class your energy channels are open and you may be more present to feelings and sensations. A distraction of the phone will ruthlessly pull you away from this. Often the very reason we seek external sources of distraction is because deep down we don’t wish to deal with what is rising and this isn’t just when it comes to the distraction of our phones.

‘Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.’ Thich Nhat Hanh

Dealing with anything that may be rising within, during or after class requires mindfulness in itself. You can apply this mindfulness by recognising and acknowledging whatever is there for you. Welcome and observe it without judgement and allow it to pass, almost as if you were watching a movie.

‘Mindfulness is simply being aware of what is happening right now without wishing it were different; enjoying the pleasant without holding on when it changes (which it will); being with the unpleasant without fearing it will always be this way (which it won’t),’ James Baraz

Why not experiment with leaving your phone at home next time you attend class, then it gives you the space between the end of class and arriving home to settle and enjoy that peace and stillness that you have worked hard to achieve. Or even better make an agreement with yourself to not turn your phone on until thirty minutes after class. If thirty minutes is too daunting, why not start with five and build up from there?

And don’t forget to share with us how you find this experiment!

When our pain is held by mindfulness it loses some of its strength… mindfulness recognizes what is there, and concentration allows you to be deeply present with whatever it is. Concentration is the ground ofhappiness. Thich Nhat Hanh

Did you miss our chakra series posts? Don’t forget that you can also meet our staff here.

Patanjali: the legend

Legend has it that Patanjali compiled and codified the yoga sutras. The yoga sutras (sutra translating as thread) is considered the fundamental text for practising and living yoga and not just in the sense of asana but with regards to the full eight limbs. Those limbs being yama, niyama, asana, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana, dhyana and samadhi. Remember the recent post about one of the limbs, the yamas? yoga adelaide

Patanjali compiled 196 sutras or concise aphorisms that are essentially an ethical blueprint for living a moral life and incorporating the science of yoga into your life. Although no one is sure of the exact time when Patanjali lived and wrote down his sutras, it is estimated this humble physician (who became one of the world’s greatest and most well known sages) roamed India somewhere between 200 BC and 200 AD and that his birthplace was a celestial abode called Ilavrita-Varsha and his mother being Sati and father, Angiras (one of the ten sons of Brahma).

The verses are interconnected and all related together, hence their namesake of sutra (thread). ‘The scripture is regarded as the most precise and scientific text ever written on yoga,’ Four Chapters on Freedom.

He was said to be able to communicate since birth and was believed to be an incarnation of the mythical endless serpent, Ananta. The tradition runs that upon his birth he made known things past, present and future, showing the intellect and penetration of a sage while yet an infant. He married Lolupa, whom he found in the hollow of a tree on the north of Sumeru, and is said to have lived for many, many years. It was also claimed that he once reduced a group of Bhotabhandra residents to ashes by fire from his mouth after being insulted by them.

It was believed he had a variety of talents that included being a physician, dancer, medical intuitive, philosopher and grammarian. There are many uncertainties and skepticism shrouding what Patanjali actually achieved. Given his suspected parentage, he was an accomplished dancer that created classical traditions of dance styles still performed today in India and he is regarded as the patron saint of dance but it is a given in the yogic community that he was the one to package up yoga in the sutras we follow in most yoga lineages today. Although he did not create yoga he was instrumental in bringing it to the world.

Did you know? Patanjali can be roughly translated as ‘falling from heaven’, ‘offering sacred knowledge coming from the heart’ or ‘falling into folded hands’. Read more here.

Some people even purport that Patanjali also wrote a treatise on Ayurvedic medicine with a focus on diagnosis of disease and drugs, the structure and function of the human body and its fitness and its aesthetics.

Often called the “father of yoga”, there is still much mystery surrounding Patanjali and some facts and information have been misinterpreted or diluted over the years, not too dissimilar to that of another legend of man we may be familiar with: Jesus and his teachings.

 

 

 

 

Get to Know Your yogafusion – Pradeep Teotia

yoga adelaide

Meet the visiting instructor – Pradeep Teotia (Libra)

When did your yoga journey start? And why did you start?

I think I was six or seven years old!

Describe your first class?

Amazing, crazy and very energetic and peaceful.

adelaide yoga
What led you to decide to become a yoga instructor?

I wanted to share my passion with others.

What do you find most rewarding about being a yoga instructor?

Seeing change in people’s lives.

Describe where yoga has helped you overcome a challenge in life.

It has made me more aware!

Continue reading