The breath. It’s such a wide topic. I don’t think I could ever do it justice, but I’m going to try.
As a yoga teacher, I’m always telling my students that breathing in yoga is the most important thing. In fact, is the only thing. The purpose of yoga is to find a calm and steady breath in whatever pose you find yourself in. But…why? Because breathwork, is the gateway to healing. Breathing is critical to life. If you stop breathing, you DIE. It’s that simple.
Just like constant flow of blood, the body needs a constant flow of oxygen in and carbon dioxide out. Because the body is so resilient and wired for life, That basic function of gas exchange, can be achieved by any type of breathing. Your breath could be shallow or deep, ragged or smooth, mindful or UNmindful and it’ll still keep you alive.
But will it keep you WELL?
Continuing off from my previous blog post on tips for the first time visitor to Mysore, below are some other things to keep in mind when coming to India. Firstly having sufficient copies of your passport and Indian visa! You’d be surprised at how often you’ll end up needing them. Should you need to fill out any official application forms, there is a good chance you will be asked to produce these documents, so come prepared.
Coming to Mysore to practice and spending time here is one of my most favourite things, and if you make it here, I am quite certain it will be yours as well. If it’s your first time to Mysore or even to India, here are some suggested ways to make your trip a little bit smoother – at least when it comes to transport choices and getting around.
As Ashtanga practitioners, we normally do not use props in aid of our practice. This is because we are encouraged to do the best we can in any pose and as long as we can breathe, then it means that we are doing it right. In time, and with practice, one will eventually be able to take the pose with ease, stability and flexibility. So essentially, we do not need props, no matter what your level is, except perhaps in extreme cases.
Here’s Part 2 of my 10 Recommended Places to Eat in Mysore! These are personal favorite spots of mine located in various parts of Mysore that serve up different types of delicious food! Be sure to check out Part 1 if you haven’t already.
Coming to Mysore and leaving everything behind, I always look forward to a slow down in the pace of my life. My daily concerns can be summed up as follows:
I have to be in bed at a ridiculously early hour just so I get enough sleep and be ready for practice the next morning.
After practice is over and I walk out of the shala, my next concern is what shall I eat today?
After several trips, I have developed my own list of favourite places to eat. These places are located in various parts of Mysore and serve up different types of fare. If you are ever in town, you can be sure that I’ll be taking you to one of these spots!
Once again I am back in my happy place, Mysore, which is going to be home for the next two months. Every time I make it here, I would have had to jump through hoops to make it happen. Different obstacles each time. And this time was no different. From the usual anxieties of “Will I be accepted by the shala to practice?” and finding decent accommodation at reasonable prices to worrying that my students and the studio will be well taken care of while I am gone. Thankfully, everything came together at the right moment allowing me to be here now.
Massive changes have taken place since a mere eight months ago, when I returned from my last trip to Mysore. Changes in the form of my own personal and professional development. On a personal front, this has been, and continues to be a year of practising being brave enough to realise what I truly want and start moving towards it.
‘Come and try a class’….said the teacher who has since become a good friend. I shuddered at the mere idea of attending a MYSORE class. Mysore classes are for advanced students I thought. I couldn’t have been further from the truth!
For as long as I can remember, I have always been interested in matters of health and wellbeing and yoga was always at the top of my list of activities to achieve. So I tried it out; different classes and different places. Did I enjoy them? Most definitely. Did I stick with them? Unfortunately not. Perhaps I was still not ready. In theory, I understood all the wonderful benefits that yoga could bring into my mental, physical and spiritual health. What I didn’t understand was that in order to reap those benefits, I had to commit.
Many of us suffer from this complex. We have been taught from a very young age that is important to give and to share and to put others first.
I came across an interesting blog post that I thought you might also enjoy reading and maybe pick up a tip or two; if this is something you also suffer from.
The point that resonated with me in this post was; ‘Know the difference between goodwill and pleasing . Learning the difference will help you make better choices for yourself.’ For me, this is good advice!
Have a read of the article here. Enjoy!
My love affair with all things health and wellness began while I was in my teens.
I was always overweight as a child and this continued well into adulthood. Despite all the knowledge I had accumulated about food, nutrition and exercise, I could never manage to control my weight. Because of this, I often felt less than confident. OR…maybe it was because I felt less than confident that I never managed to control my weight!
Towards the end of my schooling career, I started thinking about what was next for me. NOTHING came to mind. So I tried a variety of things, some of which I enjoyed; others, not so much. None really stuck.