‘ To say that you can’t take life seriously and that life shouldn’t be taken seriously is not to say that life is trivial or frivolous. Quite the contrary. There’s nothing the least bit frivolous about the playful nature of the universe. Playfulness at a fully conscious level is extremely profound. In fact there is nothing more profound. Wit and playfulness are dreadfully serious transcendence of evil.’
— Tom Robbins
Our theme this week is play! We’ll be exploring some playful angles to the familiar forms of yoga asana, we’ll also be observing who our experience in each posture shifts when we approach it with an attitude of joyful exploration rather than seriousness. This can be especially powerful in the more challenging postures (hence Hanumanasana above). When a pose requires a long patient practice, we might as well make the most of that journey and have fun along the way! We’ll be embracing this approach in Pilates for Yogis and Vinyasa Playlist tonight. Check my timetable for details on all my classes.
Taking your practice outside is a great way to add some sunshine - in every sense of the word. Free pilates is on again this Wednesday 9.30am in Oldis Gardens Northcote.
The aerial hammock is an amazing place to bring some levity to your yoga practice and life. It’s easy to feel playful when you are swinging through the air and hanging upside down. It’s also a powerful place to explore the parallels between play and meditation, being present and immersed in each moment, rather than being attached to the outcome. Click here for details on the Garden of Yoga Studio.
n. the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own—populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness—an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk.
I made this little garden as a competition entry, but it’s a project I’ve been wanting to do for ages!
I wanted to create a colourful little row of pot plants for my window sill. I picked lots of succulent cuttings from my garden and gathered up some old tins. First on the left is a candle tin with a strip of purple magic tape for colour, next spray painted cat food tins, two for each plant, the top one with holes in the base, decorated with magic tape cut in triangles. In the middle is a tea tin and the last on the right is another cat food tin with pink packaging tape. A friend came over to help with plants from her garden too! We both ended up with lots of cute little pot plants cleared up some kitchen clutter. Such a fun and easy project, using recycled materials, plants from my garden and Scotch Expressions Tape!!
Hope you feel inspired to give it a go at home and please vote for my entry here
Our theme this week is back bends! Following on from our focus on forward bends last week, we’ll continue to tune into the movements of the spine, while engaging our core muscles for support from within. We’ll focus on stretches for the chest, shoulders and hips, to create space as we extend into these powerful postures.
Emotionally the forward bending postures encourage us to look inwards. When we bend backwards we look out into the world from a different perspective as we adventurously extend out into the unknown. Back bends encourage us to open our hearts and embrace life!
We’ll be focusing on building core strength to support productive back extension in all my classes this week, but especially in Pilates for Yogis (6-7pm Monday). In Vinyasa Playlist (7.15-8.45 Mondays), we’ll flow into some playful back bending sequences, including in our inversions.
Back extension in the aerial hammock feels amazing! We’ll be using the movement of the hammock to build core strength and stability to support opening out into some deep, expansive back bends in the Garden of Yoga studio classes this week. We’ll also be exploring some floor based postures that are much more accessible with the hammock (hello royal pigeon and Natarajasana).
Free Pilates in the Park is also on this week, Wednesday mornings 9.30-10.30am in Oldis Gardens, Westgarth St, Northcote (near Westgarth train station). BYO Mat or towel.
“Miniature topographies inside 200-gallon fish tanks, based on traditional landscape paintings. Keever fills the tanks with water once he’s sculpted and placed the miniatures, and colored lights and pigments create dense, atmospheric environments. He views his works as an evolution of the landscape tradition and deliberately acknowledges the conceptual artifice.”
This weeks theme is forward bends. These postures stretch out all the muscles along the back, legs and hips. Emotionally forward bends encourage us to look inwards, gradually releasing blockages mentally and physically.
The theme this week is keeping our cool! We’ll be practicing pranayama and postures that help to cool us down physically and work on staying calm and presently mentally as we move into stronger practices.
We’ll be in a shady spot for the first session of free Pilates in the park, this Wednesday 9.30am at Oldis Gardens.
I’m also investigating air conditioning for the Garden of Yoga Studio!
Have a great week and stay cool Yogis!
If you’re coming to rainbow I’ll be teaching a session 11am at Kamp Kraken, come and say hi!
This weeks theme is the feather and the wall, it is inspired by our new little kitten Nagano. It’s so much fun watching the little guy exploring the world (of our living room). He loves everyone he meets and is so playful, curious and excited about life that he runs around purring like a little engine. He gets so captivated by whatever he’s doing that it’s fascinating just watching him. And hilarious. Like the time he ran into the wall four times in a row chasing a feather.
So this week in our practice we’ll channel some of that of joy and fascination with the feather, the things that catch our immediate attention and the playfulness of being in the moment with our practice. We’ll balance this with a bigger picture view (the wall), our knowledge of our bodies, the workings of our minds and the habits that grow out of that landscape. The layers of understanding we build up over time.
We’ll aim to find the balance between being mindful and being playful.
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