1. Can anyone do yoga?
Everybody can do yoga. Every body! It is beneficial for everyone of any condition, shape, size and age. I have taught many people of many ages and states of health, including children, pregnant women, elderly people and highly trained athletes.
2. What does a class involve?
Each person is supported in working from their own starting point. While focusing on breathing normally, we practise poses to improve balance, strength and flexibility. Then we continue with poses focusing on healing the spine and working more deeply into the systems of the body. We end with a deep relaxation.
3. How will I feel?
DURING CLASS – All sorts of different emotions and sensations will be felt, you will probably discover a few muscles you never knew you had. With regular practice your stamina, strength and flexibility will all increase, as will the efficiency and vigour of all the major systems of your body.
AFTER CLASS – After class people feel de-stressed, euphoric and energised. Yoga is healing, it stretches out the body, releases pockets of tension and promotes physical and mental well-being. People often experience new levels of vitality.
4. What shall I wear?
5. What if I have health problems?
Of course, as with any physical exercise, if you have a health condition you are unsure about please seek medical advice first. Yoga can create incredible changes and healing in both body and mind. With regular practice people have found relief from back and knee problems, high blood pressure, respiratory ailments, sciatica, arthritis, insomnia, headaches, depression and addictions. Some people I have taught who have had spinal surgery have told me that their doctors are amazed by the positive changes that yoga has achieved.
One of the most inspiring people I have taught was an older man with many health problems. Before starting yoga, he had 3 small heart attacks, a triple by-pass operation followed by a stroke and then an operation to unblock his arteries. After intensive physiotherapy, he went from a wheel chair to walking within 3-4 months.
Soon afterwards, in the summer of 2000, he began yoga with lots of encouragement from his family, who all enjoy the benefits of yoga. It was a slow process of building strength and stamina. Then in January 2001 he was diagnosed with colon cancer. He had an operation to remove his lower intestine and practised yoga a week afterwards. This courageous man continued his practice and in January 2002 completed his first full class. He was thrilled and for the first time since his stroke he could look over his shoulder to park his car.
6. Will I lose weight?
Yoga really does help people to balance out all the systems of the body, which often means that, with continued regular practice, people’s body shape can change quite dramatically, with excess weight vanishing and a stronger, leaner, longer look being created.
7. Can I practise if I am pregnant?
If a pregnant woman is new to yoga it is suggested that she waits until she is three months pregnant before starting yoga. I have had the pleasure of teaching many pregnant women. One woman who had twins, practised with me up to a week before giving birth and came back 16 days afterwards… looking very different! Another lady continued up to the day before she gave birth, to a 10lb baby, and then came back to class eleven days later. Both women believe the yoga helped them enormously as they suffered no back complaints and felt great and very positive.
8. What if I am going through the menopause?
I have taught many women who have gone through the menopause. Their main comments about the benefits of practising yoga are that the hot flushes are ‘not as bad’, their digestion has improved and their energy levels are much better, feeling once more a spring in their step.