Monday, September 14, 2015


I had a few friends in Hamilton who told me I would enjoy yoga if I tried it. They were avid yogi’s who absolutely loved the benefits hot yoga had to offer. While they may have suggested I try out the practice, I never did in a studio setting. I did, however, enjoy doing 'Yoga with Adriene' on Youtube.

When my wonderful husband accepted the opportunity to play drums at the Hard Rock Café in Dubai for a few months, I was left with a lot of free time to fill in order to distract me from the fact that it's just me and Bourbon at the apartment. Enter, yoga. Being thankful for the lesser cost of a trial membership, I embarked on a journey of yoga-- first at Moksha, and now, at Yoga Public.

I’ve enjoyed what practicing yoga has offered. 
The physical benefits of practicing are getting in a workout that doesn’t necessarily feel like a workout, and participating in at least 5 classes per week.  
The mental benefits are incredible-- one complete hour where I am fully present in the moment of what I am doing. While challenging myself physically, I do so without feeling hard on myself as I’m pleasantly surprised at what I am capable of and rarely feel discouraged when I try, then fall. Learning to concentrate strictly one thing only, preventing the mind from wandering, has been fascinating. 
The final collaborator is the emotional benefits which, for me, has been getting out of the apartment and realizing I found something I actually enjoy doing!

To receive the optimal benefits of a trial membership, one must always try as many different classes as humanly possible. Yoga Public has this variety aspect down from basic hot flow classes, to hot core classes, yin, meditation, detox, and, my new favourite for ending my work week, floating yoga and meditation.

*I’d just like to take a moment to say that yes, I am a Christian, and yes, I am doing yoga and loving it. I know some people don’t understand how to mesh the two together in such a way they feel they aren’t compromising their faith. I think I’ve done an alright job of it. Being aware of what the instructors are saying and mentally saying to yourself ‘yes, I agree with this’ or ‘no, I don’t’ is enough to keep myself grounded in my own faith, while exploring the many benefits of yoga.*

The floating yoga and meditation is done in the yoga hammock/swing thing (so technical, I know) and is some super fun yoga first, with meditation to follow. This past weeks class was guided by a new (to me) instructor and she was absolutely lovely. The meditation focused on breathing in with the intention and expectation of ‘receiving’, and breathing out to the idea of 'letting go’. At the end of class, the mantra was paired with the challenge to take forward the objective of being fully present in every moment—not allowing yourself to be distracted. To just be and see the difference it makes with friends and family, and even your pets! While I enjoyed this immensely (along with the essential oils and ambiance touches of music, candles and gong), she spoke one phrase that captured me...

Thanks, Pinterest!
With our hands at ‘heart centre’, she spoke of compassion, and love, and all those gorgeous things that come from our heart. She then guided us to take our hands and gently cup our eyes. She spoke of how we need to take the love and compassion from our hearts, and use those to shape what we see through our eyes. For anyone that has read my latest blog post, you know this sentiment is on point with what I try (and both succeed and fail at trying) to do in my life.

While yoga can be filled with chants I don’t take part in because I don’t know what they mean, new age philosophy where a hot flow sequence was created to honour the blue moon (yes, it happened), or other general phrases of third eyes and things I know nothing about, there are moments where beliefs collide and the message and mantra resonates from deep within, making my practice feel all the more engaging on every possible level.
Every class ends with your teacher thanking you for sharing your practice and the simple phrase of ‘Namaste’. I was once told that Namaste means ‘the light in me acknowledges and honours the light in you’. I love this definition. We are all amazing and created in the image of God—I can't fathom a more perfect phrase to say to someone than the simple message of how you acknowledge and honour how God is living in them and through them.


**If you’ve never tried yoga, I encourage you to check it out Most places have ‘Karma Classes’--  anyone can attend for a fee of a suggested donation to attend the class. The donated money goes to a charity.  

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