By mellowburnyoga, Mar 2 2020 04:39PM
If you’re anything like me, you’ll be relishing in the change of season right now. Winter is just sooooo long in the UK, even down here in Guildford where we're supposed to be warmer!
The evenings are becoming lighter and the confetti effect of spring blossom teases the eyes. Attention is suddenly drawn back to the skies and our surroundings, breathing in the newness of nature as the birds return and the bulbs begin to rise up out of the earth.
Spring is a wonderful time to rethink our agenda in life and how we might transition in reflection of nature. The heaviness of winter begins to release us into a new uplifting sense of lightness.
Indeed, in our ancestral habits of wanting to be warm, we literally tend to apply another 'layer' over winter to keep us warmer. This accumulation of food is known in Ayurvedic medicine as Ama.
Rather like a kind of tar, Ama blocks the physical and energetic channels of the body, lodging itself between organs and on the surface of the tongue as a white paste. With Ama our body feels achy, stiff and swollen bellied.
Not only metamorphaising in the physical body, Ama takes it’s reside in our mind, leaving us feeling sluggish and demotivated. Worst still we reach for those same winter comforts that got us here in the first place creating a cyclic pattern of dis-ease and bad health.
In a yogic lifestyle we're constantly attempting to rebalance, finding the sattvic equality of goodness, truth, serenity and peace.
Transitioning to Spring Time with Diet
Breaking free from the effects of Ama means to detox using foods that are designed to stimulate the bodies own natural defences.
Apples, garlic and broccoli all help the process back to health, but it's especially bitter foods like leafy vegetables, coffee, watercress and orange peel that encourage the digestive tract.
The body receives the bitters similarly to a light poison and responds by firing up all of our detoxing organs. Bile is released into the liver and gallbladder, clearing the blood of heat. Saliva is generated in the mouth at the bitter taste and stimulates breath and metabolism. The bitter taste buds continue on into the lungs which in turn kicks the respiratory system into action.
Other recommendations to shed the old winter coat are turmeric, a proven anti-inflammatory that helps restore circulation and metabolism whist helping the liver to cleanse.
Transitioning to Spring Time With Yoga
Practicing yoga in all seasons is beneficial, with different sets of poses designed to help the practitioner in different ways.
In this instance, detoxing twists move blood along the digestive tract and enliven the nervous system. A simple seated twist or supine twist on your back helps to unwind the spine and gently reduce bloating.
Spring yoga sequences should also include heart opening poses, which are wonderful counterposes to the winter hunch over, where we spend a lot of time bracing from the cold. Backbends and heart opening also tend to elevate the heart rate and build core strength as the muscles in the torso contract to stop any over dependency on the lower back.
Poses such as Camel, Reverse Warrior, Bow or Cobra all help to literally lift your heart towards the sky and create a toxin burning heat within the body, burning away the Ama.
Feeling well and making the absolute most of your body is critical for avoiding illness and discomfort. I love the saying ' look after your body, you have nowhere else to live'!
Join a (my!) Yoga Class!
Regularly practicing yoga will help you achieve a sense of wellness inside and out. Your whole body will feel more spacious and open, your mind will feel calmer and over time, you'll be able to go into the deeper elements of yoga which can change your whole life for the better! My Guildford or Woking based Yoga classes are always open to anyone who wishes to join and I hope you'll all feel welcome.
Yoga for All - Mixed Ability
This 7pm 60 minute class is a general flow for all levels and although has some tricky postures is designed to be accesible. Held at Winston Churchill Sports Centre on Hermitage Road, Woking
Gentle & Simple Yoga Class
My 6.45pm 60 minute simple and gentle yoga is held every Thursday night and is perfect for beginners or for those wishing for a slower class. Find us at Stoughton Methodist Church Hall on Stoughton Road, Guildford, Surrey.
Vinyasa Flow & Yoga Conditioning Class
This 8pm 75 minute class is intermeditate level and contains several rounds of sun salutations, leading into peak poses and more tricky variations. Muscle groups will be targeted with some conditioning reps to build strength over your whole body. Difficult in places, but gives motivation to work towards a more challenging and stronger practice, or simply listen to your body and take the many modifications given. Find us at Stoughton Methodist Church Hall on Stoughton Road, Guildford, Surrey.
Private 121 Tuition
If you have more specific needs, why not consider private tuition where I can give you my fullest attention and tailor make the practice to your needs. I have several clients, all with different aims and objectives and who I love to work with.
Feel free to reach out to me at [email protected] to discuss your requirements
Until then, have a wonderful Spring 2020 and I look forward to seeing you matside! ;)