An experiment in the use of yoga for our wellbeing and our communities: I have put together a calendar of classes around my two weekly public classes using Yoga With Adriene’s annual 30 days of yoga journey – this year called ‘Breath‘. I’ve added a sprinkling of additional (free) restorative classes, I will direct the community to some fantastic offerings from my fellow teachers, and I hope to host a virtual ‘retreat’ to complete the programme. All up, everyone will have the option of practicing yoga (or substituting any other activity aimed at looking after their physical and psychological wellbeing) for 43 days and for minimum cost.
I’ve put together an (optional) WhatsApp group so that we can support each other as we cross the threshold into 2021, hopefully cultivating a sense of community and practicing self-care at its most practical and nourishing. It seems to me that we need each other – we have a basic human need to be together (even if it is virtually at the moment), and many of us also need permission and space held to look after ourselves; to counter the ever-expanding list of Things We Should Be Doing.
I’ll be honest: I miss in-person yoga classes, I miss teaching people ‘in the real’, and chatting to them in the studio. I miss moving with a group of people, being both more in tune with my own body, and part of the collective body at the same time. I have practiced with Adriene every January for the last five or so years – it gives me one month where I can hand over the reins of my daily self-practice to another teacher. I find new inspiration and I feel like I can rest and be held for this time. The result has always been that I end up practicing more, going off-piste, exploring new transitions and poses for my own practice and generally feeling recharged and excited. Its a fresh start and a commitment to my physical and mental health.
This year, I wanted to ask others to join me, and to create this community around self-care practices. Everything is offered on a ‘what works for you’ basis – some people have committed to do all of it, others will join in once or twice a week, do the classes at different times, run or meditate once a week instead, miss out weekends, explore their own self-led practice, and so on. This is an offering is intended to improve our lives, to help us to feel find some space and steadiness, whatever this year might bring. It is not a New Years resolution and definitely not an encouragement to resolve to create a better, more enhanced version of yourself!
I’m firmly of the opinion that making space for ourselves for regular practice is an important step in spreading kindness and shaping our communities, and ultimately our world into one in which we are proud to participate. Contact me for all the details and to join us, any time.
I’m posting a few of my thoughts here, on my blog as we move through the calendar of classes. These are bits of teaching, answers to questions, thoughts prompted by the classes, and hopefully useful context for the journey. Let me know if you’d like to hear more on any topic!