I am so excited! Why? Because today I start a brand new Bliss Yoga class at Glow Yoga in Fitzrovia. I have long been a practitioner and teacher of restorative yoga having studied my Restorative Yoga Teacher Training with the fabulous Judith Hanson Lasater at Yogacampus a number of years ago. A more gentle, restorative approach is a must-have in my world. No matter whether you’re a vinyasa addict, a passionate ashtangi, a complete beginner, or even recovering from injury – this style of yoga has a place in your life. It’s a great place to start yoga, and a great place to evolve your practice if you’re generally into a more dynamic class. In truth, it wasn’t until I started doing regular restorative work that I really started to see my body opening and lengthening, and with that came the strength that I had lacked to do so many of the asanas that had previously evaded me in my stronger vinyasa practice. No, yoga absolutely isn’t just about the asanas but the ego has a mad way, right or wrong, of making you desire and lust after certain poses! I used to do more and more vinyasa thinking it would get me there, but when I stopped trying so hard and embraced a balanced practice that included vinyasa AND restorative, all of a sudden – BOOM! – I finally found the strength I’d been chasing for so long. I wished I’d known about it years longer than I had, and I wish I’d embraced it sooner than I did!
The Glow Yoga Bliss classes are specially created to nourish you into balance and rid you of everyday stress. They nurture the sympathetic nervous system with a carefully constructed series of poses, calming or revitalising breathing techniques (pranayama) and mindful, flowing movement. Poses are largely supported with props, to encourage the body to release and open without tension. Very gentle fluid movements are combined with a more restorative, yin approach where relaxed poses may be held for several minutes to encourage fascia, connective tissue that is found everywhere in the body, surrounding bones, muscles, ligaments and tendons, to ease and open. This approach results in deep releases into tight spots and areas of holding, a deeper connection with the breath as the diaphragm and intercostals muscles become less constricted and a calm awareness of mind. Bliss classes impart a profound sense of renewal, relaxation and well-being and are the perfect counter balance to modern day stress, anxiety and fatigue.
To make it even more blissful, the Bliss classes at Glow are practiced in soft lighting with candlelight, to impart a sense of calm the minute you walk into the room. The studio is also gently heated by the studio’s infrared heat, to further encourage the body to open safely and to soothe any stiffness.
My Bliss class starts tonight, at 7.15pm, at the Fitzrovia studio of Glow Yoga – so whatever level of experience you have of yoga, ditch the ego-led expectations and come and embrace your body on the mat! I promise you, whatever level of yoga you’re at, you will get so much more than you could ever imagine from slowing it down once a week.
With blissful vibes!