What is yoga?
Yoga is an ancient system of healing originally developed in India as a spiritual and aesthetic discipline.
Practices include breath awareness and development (Pranayama); meditation and mindfulness techniques; as well as specific physical postures (Asana).
The word yoga actually means to yoke. The yoking or union takes place within, helping practitioners to develop a deeper sense of connection to Self.
‘When you make friends with yourself you will never be alone’ ~ Maxwell Maltz
Who can benefit from yoga?
Everyone! Regular yoga practice assists in balancing the physical structure of the body and bringing it into deeper communion with the mind and heart. When mind, body and heart are aligned deep healing and a great sense of well being are available to us all.
Do you chant and Ohm?
There can be apprehension and possible resistance to certain yogic practices, for example chanting. While I myself love a good chant and welcome those who do to join me in private classes, during public classes it is offered as a personal choice. Everything is optional and nothing is expected! Your Bliss and comfort are paramount to your practice.
What if I’m not flexible?
There is a common myth that flexibility is a requirement for yoga practice. As untrue as that is it’s easy to see how the myth has developed when looking at all the ‘bendy’ pictures we see on Facebook and Instagram!
Yoga is actually about balancing flexibility and strength and achieving YOUR body’s potential through gentle progression.
We gently bring our bodies towards a boundary and through breath we can expand against it in order to develop the flexibility and strength wherever either is needed.
What style of yoga do you teach?
I began my journey with Anusara yoga and while I have practiced and studied many different styles with many different teachers I continue to adhere to the basic alignment principles found here. This is because they FEEL right in my body. My teaching has developed from the continued practice of these principles and has been influenced by all teachings that have resonated with me along the path. These include my earlier study of biomechanics and rehabilitation as well as principles of injury prevention.
What is Fascia and why is it important?
Fascia is the connective tissue of the body. It operates like a web (it is actually one continuous structure connecting head to toe without interruption!) throughout the body connecting muscle to muscle and muscle to bone. It surrounds each organ and envelops and penetrates all tissues and body structures including nerves, arteries and veins. It allows for muscles and organs to glide smoothly against each other as well as providing a protective sheath around the entire body.
Hard working substance right!?
So why is it important? Well, not only does it protect the body as a whole it also protects each organ and muscle from outside trauma by encasing them as well as acting as a shock absorber.
Equally as important is its role in connecting and supporting the musculoskeletal system to allow for functional movement.
In a normal healthy state fascia is relaxed and allows for smooth movement throughout the body. Trauma, whether physical or emotional, scarring, inflammation, surgery and postural imbalance are a few of the outside forces that can affect the integral system. Restrictions and loss of pliability of fascia can affect all other systems of the body and may lead to pain; headaches; restrictions in motion, flexibility and stability. In fact disruptions within the fascial system can even be a determining factor in our ability to withstand stress both physically and emotionally.
What are the benefits of massage therapy?
Massage can be a powerful tool to help you find more ease and comfort in your body. Studies have shown that benefits of massage include effective treatment for reducing stress, pain and muscle tension.
Along with these already great reasons there are others that may be more surprising:
Massage used correctly can help to counteract the large amounts of sitting we do in our society today, relieving stress in areas that are constantly under tension such as the neck, shoulders and lower back.
Massage can ease anxiety and depression. Human touch is one of the most ancient forms of healing, used in a safe and professional context it can be extremely therapeutic. According to a 2005 study published by the International Journal of Neuroscience women who were diagnosed with breast cancer who received massage three times weekly reported being less depressed and angry and this is just one of the many studies published on the benefit of massage!
Massage has also been shown to improve sleep, boost immunity and relieve headaches.
Is massage for me?
Most people can benefit from massage therapy, however certain conditions can mean that this type of therapy may be contraindicated for you. These may include: blood disorders or if you are taking blood-thinning medication; have burns or healing wounds; deep vein thrombosis; fractures or severe osteoporosis. Always consult with your doctor if you have any questions concerning the safety of embarking on this type of treatment program.
How can sports rehabilitation and structural bodywork benefit me?
Many reoccurring injuries and chronic pain syndromes result from postural imbalances and misalignments. Becoming more aware of your physical structure including these imbalances and misalignments can assist in the correct rebalancing of your system. Release of tight tissues and fascial restrictions as well as re-education of weak areas and areas that may have developed a kind of insomnia can be extremely beneficial in helping to treat and prevent further injury and pain.
Working deeply within the framework of the fascial web increases the adaptability of your tissue as well as helps to create lasting change within your structure, this change of the postural pattern developed through a lifetime can have major benefits on all systems of the body.
What does a sport rehabilitation and structural bodywork session entail?
Within the session we will use deep tissue myofascial release and conscious movement to bring awareness to postural imbalance helping to re-educate the tissues and increase the awareness of connection to areas of insomnia within them. This, along with awareness exercises specific to your structure, will help to create long lasting relief and correction of postural imbalance. One session can be very beneficial however this work is generally done in series, starting with the most superficial of tissues and working through a number of sessions to the deeper layers of fascia.
A three series is a wonderful introduction to the work allowing for the beginning of a deep opening into the tissues and creating a wealth of change in the physical structure.
A twelve series is an intense and more long-term journey to creating deep change within the tissues and offers a more detailed and progressive approach to this type of work. It is not for the faint of heart as it is a powerful and potent form of therapy that can be emotionally and physically taxing. The benefits however are way worth the intensity!