Dance movement to music can be freeing and healing to the body and mind - particularly when it holds excess stress and tension.
At Yogarama Retreats in the bush, we shared a freeing dance movement as the sunset - retreaters wore blindfolds or some simply closed their eyes for a full hour of free movement - each mindful movement feels great in the body,
Chakradance™ is a well-being movement practice that we used at our recent retreats. It uses spontaneous dance, to specific chakra-resonant music, for the purpose of healing and re-tuning your whole mind-body-spirit energy system.
At the heart of Chakradance is the music. For all of us, the seven major chakras are the energetic gateways through which body, mind and spirit come together, literally embodying the soul.
The full moon is a wonderful time to release energy - why not down the FREEDOM Chakra dance music below and get some movement flowing in your body...
Why Is Sleep Important?
Sleep is sooo important because it can help us physically heal, recover from illness, deal with stress, solve problems, consolidate memories, and improves motor skills. A good night’s sleep isn’t just about how many hours of sleep you get, but also the quality of that sleep. There are two essential kinds of sleep: non-rapid eye movement sleep (NREM) and rapid eye movement sleep (REM).
There are many ways that yoga can help improve the quality of sleep:
Yoga and Insomnia
Insomnia is the inability to fall asleep or stay asleep. Insomnia can have many long-term effects, including daytime sleepiness and impairment, memory loss, and mood changes. Studies have demonstrated that yoga can be beneficial in managing sleep problems such as insomnia. Yoga can especially benefit particular groups of people with insomnia, such as postmenopausal women and women with breast cancer.
What Types of Yoga Help You Sleep?
There are many types of yoga that provide health and wellness benefits. During the day, any type of yoga practice is appropriate, so long as the user is comfortable. High-activity forms of yoga, such as vinyasa or hot yoga, are a good type of moderate to high exercise. Such exercise, when done at least several hours before bedtime, can help you sleep better at night.
Since high-activity yoga forms elevate the heart rate, it’s best to avoid these practices right before bedtime. People who wish to practice yoga nearer to bedtime will find a slower and restorative type of yoga more suitable:
Poses done before bedtime should encourage the body to relax and sleep. Recommendations among yoga instructors and physicians vary, but the following poses are commonly suggested:
If you have concerns about your yoga practice, consult a yoga teacher for a private session or a clinician. Remember that yoga is not a substitute for medical treatment. In the event of persistent sleep disturbances or other concerns, consult your physician to develop a treatment plan.
Yogarama is doing our part to help make your sleep serve you. Sleep Week is 13-19 March 2022
Chronic inflammation is something you want to avoid long-term. At the 2021 Global Yoga Therapy Conference, I learned how a regular yoga & meditation practice can reduce chronic inflammation, that underlies so many modern day conditions from irritable bowel syndrome to eczema to heart disease.
The Science Behind Inflammation
Inflammation is actually an essential defense mechanism - its a protective process to ensure an infection or injury can be dealt with. It typically lasts a short while and is referred to as acute inflammation, where the body then returns to a state of balance. The immune system sends out signaling molecules to the site of issue and this signaling initiates an inflammatory response to promote the removal of the issue and healing.
Unlike acute inflammation, chronic inflammation can cause more harm than good. A prolonged inflammatory response is often due to factors relating to our diet and lifestyle.
Chronic Inflammation underlies many modern day diseases
In our modern world, chronic inflammation is most commonly caused by our intake of sugar, alcohol and preservatives, our exposure to toxins in food and the environment and infections and sedentary behaviours.
These factors put pressure on the body's systems. They cause imbalances and increase the damage and injury within the body’s tissue.
Weeks, months and even years of damaging activities cause inflammation to continue. It's purpose is to repair the damage in your body, but this level of inflammation may be too much and certain body systems may become dysfunctional as a result. We may not see the consequences of this low level of persistent inflammation for some time, until a body system can no longer perform its optimal function because of it. That’s when disease sets in and the symptoms start to show.
Sometimes the symptoms can be mild and affect a non-essential body system. Other times it affects a critical organ, with severe and dangerous accompanying symptoms.
This type of chronic inflammation can cause heart disease or autoimmune disorders like irritable bowel syndrome, eczema, hormone imbalances, even forms of arthritis where inflammation begins to destroy otherwise healthy tissues in the body system.
In summary inflammation is a necessary and essential defence and repair process of the body in the short term, but can result in chronic disease if left unchecked.
The good news
Managing inflammation can help you achieve optimal health. The good news is there are plenty of diet and lifestyle changes along with therapies, including yoga therapy, that can be implemented at any age to reduce the impact of inflammation in your life.
Reach out if you would like to know more about the benefits of yoga and meditation to help reduce conditions related to chronic inflammation. email: firstname.lastname@example.org
To all Yogis...
Be at Peace
From India's Ganges River to Sydney's Wylies Baths -
A yoga & meditation Ritual
India is a spiritual and healing place for me.
Having travelled through India with a group of nine adventurous and bold women in 2017, I returned in 2019 to an Ayurveda healing retreat where I spent 10 nourishing days in Rishikesh India with like-minded yogis.
It is devastating to hear how many people in India including the yogis I met, are suffering from the COVID pandemic. On international yoga day I am calling on the Yogarama community to support the people in India the birthplace of yoga.
Swami Ji is an experienced & inspiring yoga teacher trainer and has taught thousands of yogis world-wide online to practice and teach yoga during COVID. My sister, Monica, became a yoga teacher during COVID in gratitude to Swami. He has an amazing team in Rishikesh and we hope these funds supports them too.
INTERNATIONAL YOGA DAY Fundraiser for INDIA
From India's Ganges River to Sydney's Wylies Baths yoga & meditation ritual:
FUNDRAISER EVENT IS LIVE ON-LINE
1200 pm Sunday 20th June 2021 - from Rishikesh to Wylie's Baths
1200 pm Monday 21st June 2021 - International Yoga Day - On-Line
0600 pm Monday 21st June 2021 - International Yoga Day - On-Line (Repeat)
1155 am Set yourself up in a comfy space in your own home
1200 pm: Welcome and Introduction
1205 pm Swami Ji, D'vine yoga - Integrating yoga in daily life through asana & pranayama.
1210 pm Pranayama - shining breath
1215 pm Asana - movement meditation
1255 pm Svasana - rest and meditation
0110 pm Wrap up by Daniella
0115 pm Close and Thank you
This event is honouring the birth place of yoga, India. Yogarama is hosting a fundraiser for India to help support those suffering from the COVID pandemic. From the Ganges River in Rishikesh to Wylie's Baths, Sydney our yogi, Swami. Ji will lead us in an uplifting yoga class for all, from beginners to experienced.
Swami Ji is an experienced yoga teacher trainer and has taught thousands of yogis world-wide online to practice and teach yoga during COVID. He will be leading the class on Zoom.
Please make your donation and find your sacred space on the mat at home on zoom or at Wylies Baths with the Yogarama community.
Bookings are essential and donations are encouraged.
Funds donated will provide medical supplies to those in India in need.
Clinical Trials Support Health Benefits of Yoga & Meditation - New Podcast Series
Give someone you care about a special xmas gift of your presence - a precious present and it costs nothing!
With silly season upon us, I believe it’s important to prioritise your presence, over presents.
With the COVID pandemic related stress and the stress of the silly season, you may find yourself worrying about your health, your finances, your loved ones, or your sense of security. These concerns are all valid and they’re shared by millions of other Australians.
Worry and stress can seriously distract from the here & now. I’m here to help you manage your stress to stay healthy and happy and mindfully present.
How to Mitigate Stress and Manage Symptoms
It's important to know the impacts of stress:
Acute stress, or short-term stress is brought on by one specific event, increases your heart rate and tenses your muscles. Our fight-or-flight system kicks on and helps us through short-term stressors, such as the acute stress giving you the energy to get to the hospital in an emergency like a broken arm.
Chronic stress affects you over months or even years. It can cause painful muscle tightness and headaches, hormonal shifts, lowered immunity, gastro-intestinal disruptions, and changes in libido as well as psychological issues like anxiety, depression, and burnout. There is evidence that chronic stress may serious impact your health. It leads to chronic conditions such as depression, anxiety, obesity, diabetes, psoriasis, irritable bowel syndrome and more.”
The best advice I can give is to eat healthily, do regular exercise like gentle yoga and cardio workout, meditate & continue to keep a healthy distance to stop the pandemic spread. All of this can have positive impact on your overall physical and mental health.
Stress management tips:
Try to understand why you feel stressed and figure out what you can do to decrease that sense of stress.
Pay attention to yourself as a whole human, not just as someone who deals with stress. Stress should not affect you giving plenty of self-care to yourself (take a hot bath, walk in nature) or seek care from others.
Don’t forget to stay connected. Even though many of us are still physically separated from friends and family, lean on support groups around you, including your family, friends, and fellow chronic warriors. They can provide the comfort of a listening ear and a shared experience, and remind you that as difficult as this is, we’re all in it together.
With an open heart, I farewell the beautiful yoga studio in Sydney where I first trained to be a yoga teacher. As Sukha Mukha, closed down this week, it was the end of an era and the beginning of a new one as my passion for teaching others yoga & meditation continues to grow.
My burning desire to be a yoga teacher began in my early twenties however my life took a curly path until 2013, when I had a family, full time work with two children including a blossoming and challenging teenage girl. I fell ill from too much of everything…
Yoga was my retreat into a peaceful world. My teaching journey began with teaching my friends from my home and in a few studios. By serendipity, I was swimming in the Coogee ocean pool early one morning before work and noticed yoga on the deck. I asked if I could teach in this space and from there the wonderful love story teaching yoga outdoors by the ocean has continued.
Since then, I've loved every yoga and meditation course that I have completed and met so many inspiring teachers along the way that have shaped me into the teacher I am today.
For me, the most important part of teaching yoga is the journey, no outcomes, pure acceptance and no judgement of the experience that unfolds for each individual students.
I am so grateful to all the teachers that have inspired and supported me on my journey ...
Idit- Hefer (Sukha Mukha),
Katie Rose (formerly Manistas),
Connie McNamee (Wylie's Baths, yoga teacher)
Simon and Biance, Synergy Yoga Sydney
Sal Flynn, yoga therapist and mindfulness guide,
Sunita Patil meditation teacher,
Jasmine Tarkesh, Laughing Yoga founder and teacher (San Fransisco)
Beth Borowsky Karma Kids yoga,
Timothea Goddard, Mindful-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program,
Patrick Kearney, Vipashna meditation teacher
Satbir Singh Kahlsa, Harvard Medical School professor yoga & meditation & researcher
Margaret & Glenn Ceresoli, Iyengar (YogaMind),
The Art of Living, The Happiness Program and The Art of Meditation Course
Sheryl Simantov, Soul of India Safari – travel partner to India
Sanjay Sarasvati and his mum (Swami Sarasvati) from Swami’s Wellness Retreat – Swami was the first teach yoga on a morning television program on channel 9. Sanjay, her son is her master yogi.
Inspiring Yogarama Teachers since 2018:
Destiny, Rachel, Bjorg-Ida, Nigel, Revi, Ruth, Svenja, Caroline, Caz, Simone, Megan, Louise, Chantel, Pats, Felicia, Agi, Louise, Jaoa
Please call me or email if you have questions
I am here for you.
Love and Light
Meditation is shown to offer a range of mental and physical benefits, and one way to combat anxiety, or even sadness
· Yogarama shares easy ways to deal with anxiety and stress during the pandemic, including yoga and meditation
Millions of people around the globe are experiencing the physical and mental impact of social distancing and quarantine right now. You might waiver from boredom to overwhelmed in a matter of minutes. Although you may have more down time at home, you're likely feeling anything but relaxed.
We are all feeling a type of invisible anxiety – even though many of us are not going to work and some may no longer have work, what we feel is far from the relaxed state we enjoy when we are on a holiday.
How can you feel more calm during these strange and unpredictable times.
Meditation - The Science-Based Evidence
Practicing meditation is one way to improve physical and mental health. A 2018 study showed that eight weeks of meditation and mindfulness reduced inflammation and hypertension in participants. A 2007 study published in the journal Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioural Neuroscience found that mindfulness meditation increased people's attention spans.
Meditation also good for your emotional well-being. A 2009 meta analysis of research on mindfulness showed that the practice can reduce stress and cortisol levels. And Harvard University research shows that mindfulness may actually change the brain of people with depression.
Meditation doesn't have to be simply sitting in silence. Here are a few creative ways to meditate or be more mindful.
Daily Guided Meditation:
Practising a guided meditation every day at the same time in the same place is one way to bring back a sense of daily routine.
Our regular habitual lives have been disrupted, we don’t have our daily exercise and work routines and nor are able to see family and friends.
This is an ideal time to gently introduce meditation into your life, simply 2 mins a day. See how it feels. Eventually you can build to 5 mins and then 10mins and ideally 20 minutes twice a day is a great option.
You can meditate virtually anywhere so long as you have a laptop or smartphone, headphones, and a few extra minutes.
Yogarama offers 5 week meditation courses and Daniella has guided meditation recordings on the website. Videos of our guided meditation are being created and will be ready for you soon.
We recommend a number of apps. These are simple to use and offer a range of guided meditations of different lengths for your benefit.
Meditation apps include: Headspace app. Insight Timer app. Smiling Minds app. & Calm app.
YOGA FOR WELLNESS:
When we're stressed, it's often hard to sit still. So instead of sitting in meditation, consider doing a more active form of moving meditation such as yoga. A yoga practice in the morning is ideal to set you up for a great day ahead. Ideally practice earlier in the morning before your partner, kids and neighbours get up - it is quieter and no distractions.
Yogarama has a series of guided Yoga videos for Beginners. There are 6 x 20-minute videos and shorter 5-minute videos designed to support you in practising yoga at different times in your day whether its early morning to wake up the body, unwind at the end of a busy day, to quieten an anxious mind or to soothe an aching back. Enjoy these simple yoga and breathing practice and let us know if you have any questions.
Aligned with the 5000 year old tradition of Ayurveda - the sister science of yoga, Yogarama offers sunrise classes at 730am on-line. If you are more familiar with yoga then join our 1 hour long practice daily.
BOOK CLASSES HERE.
Going for a walk in nature at a comfortable pace us calming. Instead of a fast exercise pace walk enjoy a mindful slower walking pace. Focus on your feet moving, then practice being present, in the moment, notice what you see and what you hear on our path.
Doing this active form of mindful walking meditation is especially helpful when you're feeling anxious and stressed after being at home all days.
Most Importantly, at all times, be kind and compassionate to yourself.
Yogarama’s outdoor yoga shala in a protected space, by the ocean, surrounded by nature, on the deck at Wylie’s Baths in Coogee.
It is sobering to know that in the previous epidemic (1918 flu) “fresh air” was noted as a real treatment for flu and other viruses. Today, the science shows us there are definitely health benefits in connecting to nature and breathing the fresh outdoor air. Yogarama believes that our wellness space, offering yoga, pilates and meditation and a swim in the ocean pool, may indeed serve as a much needed retreat for people in these troubled times.
Our classes have a maximum of 10 people on offer per class during this COVID19 pandemic. For those that are working from home in the Coogee, Randwick and Maroubra area, and are feeling well in themselves, we are gifting you a midday class for $14, a full one hour yoga retreat away from the home office.
We will be live streaming some midday classes on FB. So like our FB and watch out for these free classes
The new year is a time for reflection and turning over a new leaf - to let go of the past, create goals for the future and set intentions for the present. Those who succeed in longer term goals know why they are achieving their goals is important to them on a deeper level.
Here 6 tips for a successful New Year’s Resolution in the new decade.
1.Find your ‘Why?
Psychologists have studied health behaviour change in tens of thousands of people and have found that those who succeed in the long-term pass what they call the ‘Threshold of Autonomy’ - where they discover why achieving their goals is important to them at a deeper level.
2. Scaffold your goals
The biggest contributor to successful long-term behaviour change is self-efficacy - the belief that what I’m doing is making a difference. This means that your brain needs regular feedback. I’ve found that the best way to do facilitate this is to break long-term goals down to smaller chunks.
3. Motivation follows action
Once you have your waypoints worked out, you write down a list of behaviours (rituals) on a board and put the board somewhere where you will see it lots of times a day. This is called your Ritual Board and it’s central to your success. On this board you put some hard rituals, but also lots of easy rituals so that you can complete one every time you see your board and tick it off.
4. JFT (Just for Today)
Every morning, you get up, look at yourself in the mirror and say “Just For Today" (JFT). “Just for today, I’m not going to smoke (or drink alcohol or eat crap food) or I will do a workout or eat healthy food.
5.Do a weekly audit
Every Sunday, do a self-reflection exercise. Give yourself a score out of 10 and reflect on what was good and what was not so good. Then give yourself a target score for next week
Many research studies have shown that when people get an accountability partner -someone who is along the journey with you, or on the sidelines to keep you accountable - they are much more successful at achieving their goals.
Edited article from Paul Taylor, Neuroscientist and Exercise Physiologist
Daniella Goldberg has a love of yoga and a passion for mindful meditation. Through her Hatha-Flow classes, she gently guides her students to grow strong, be flexible, focused and mindful, on and off the mat.