Week 3 here we go… ok I know that I am way behind in the write ups but have been successful in attendance, can clearly see what I enjoy and what I enjoy less. I spend much of my day on the computer so getting away to class consistently has been great!
Monday March 25th
Laura Martini’s Master Class at oranj! I have always enjoyed Laura’s classes, in fact her classes were one of the first classes I attended. Laura has a soothing voice and lovely presence; she creates a space that is very comfortable to practice in. Laura invited me to the master class because she said some people are nervous to try it since it since it has master in the title. It is not that it is hard it is simply a series of postures that Laura loves and uses in her home practice. The class is a well-rounded practice. Sun salutations to warm up, warriors, twists, even the chance to play with handstand and hand stand prep (at the wall so everyone can do it!!). Finishing the class with backbends and heart openers, the sequence flows beautifully and it feels like the postures were meant to be in this order, like there is no other way for it to have been. This class is not hard, it is not easy, but it is not a Laura power class, there is a continuous flow with time to hold postures and settle right in dig deep and breath. Laura’s compassion shines through her teaching as she gives permission to adjust but also encourages you to find the edge; push it, hold it and shift it. Check out the Master Class it is a lovely series of classic postures!
Tuesday March 26
O Julie how I love love love her classes. There is really just something special about the way Julie instructs. If you have not attended her class make it to one, or two, or three because they are never ever the same. I love that about her style, she has such an eclectic style that no class is the same and I learn something new every time I get to practice with her. Today’s practice was at 6:15am and I do not live close to Okanagan Yoga Centre so when I was getting up at 5:20 is was not loving this self-imposed challenge. But just like that, once I stepped into the studio I was content with my decision to go. The studio is beautiful, clam, quiet, it’s peaceful and the morning practice was glorious with the sun rising during practice. A focus on leading with our hearts the physical practice matched the intention perfectly. Julie’s ability to relay a message and feeling in practice is subtle but effective. It was as though she was speaking just to me, lead with your heart and everything else will fall into place. I can’t even put it into words; you just need to try it for yourself to really take in all the elements of the practice she pulls together so seamlessly. See you there, but probably not at 6am for me…
Wednesday March 27th
This Wednesday night class at Mission Yoga is special to me being one of my regular classes, or was till the injury and this challenge. Dana Skoglund has been called the teacher’s teacher and that sums it up for me. Dana teaches advanced classes, both in the physical practice and in the spiritual practice, she has something to say and teach and does just that, making her classes intense. The thing is she will guide you from where you are to where you end up with care. If you are going to do deeper in the practice why not do it with the best guide you can. Wednesday nights are jam packed practices moving right along from one arm balance to an inversion to twists or backbends and then for the peak pose putting that all together for some crazy pose that scares and excites me in all the right ways. I love when she shows us a pose that looks so crazy I laugh at first, attempt it and keep at it; in time I find myself in the pose. The weeks focus was backbens, not an area of practice I am particularly strong in. My back can be temperamental with backbends but tonight for the first time I took one foot off the mat in urdhva dhanurasana and still felt secure; the stability a good teacher can offer even when they are not even touching you. If you never expose yourself to more you won’t grow… We are lucky to have a teacher like this in the area.
Thursday March 28th
Thursday morning I joined my friends over at Mokash for a vinyasa flow with Susie Newson. I thought I might be tired for this class after Dana’s class the night before but I was feeling good. I was glad we were not in the hot room but it was still warm and the class built some heat. Susie’s teacher was my first 200 hr teacher trainer so the practice felt familiar and comfortable. Obviously Susie teaches with her own flair but the postures felt familiar. Susie has a great energy, smile and voice. She is tough but sweet. Sthira Sukham Asanam –effort without tension and relaxation without being dull. This is how I would describes Susie’s style, she encourages hard work to create change yet also describes how to find ease at the same time. I always want to show up and work for myself but also for Susie when I am in her classes. She respects the practice and encourages us to do the work for ourselves saying, it is really only our work that creates change. Susie used to be a ballerina and you can tell, she has, drive, intensity, and discipline, but also softness and grace, and in her class I feel like I get a little more of those qualities myself. Susie closed the practice by chanting a sutra in shavasana, this was such a great surprise I haven’t been to a Susie class in a while and hadn’t had the pleasure of this before. Her voice is amazing and fills the room. This was the perfect way to end a lovely practice. This class is nourishing, she used that word in class and it really hit home, I practice to feel nourished, and nourished I was in Susie’s class.
Friday March 29th
Time to visit a home studio!! Friday morning before driving to Chilliwack to see family I was lucky enough to get out to Monique’s home studio Purityoga. The beauty of the home studio is they can be flexible, this class was originally Thursday night but it changed to Friday and worked out for me! Monique and I did a teacher training together, but since that training I have trained in another style and Monique did more training in that style so like Susie Monique teaches in a style that is nostalgic for me, using some cues I had forgotten. Her studio is beautiful, with a big glass door allowing for a lot of natural light. Monique does not go easy on her students this class was intense with long holds and deep postures. I got a great physical practice this morning! The other ladies I was with were regulars and Monique had said they were new to the practice so I thought class might be gentle maybe dare I say easy, nope not at all. Just like our teacher Nicki Doane, Monique is a strong teacher and offers a strong practice. This was just what I needed before my long drive.
Saturday and Sunday… no studio practice 🙁
The holiday meant studios in Chilliwack were closed and I was not back in time to hit up any in Kelowna before I had to go to work at 4… Sometimes you just cannot make the studio.
Sunday of the long weekend made it hard to get to a studio class,
I practiced yoga from time in nature and with my family, taking the opportunity to take a photo, I did not have a physical practice today but did have yoga, all day surrounding myself and giving of myself fully to those I love. It was the perfect day “0ff”.