I’ll be honest. When I first signed up for a yoga retreat in the desert I was thinking more glamping than camping. It was only when I had an email instructing me to take a sleeping bag, loo roll and a lighter to burn said loo roll (after digging a hole in the sand to go to the toilet) that I realised this retreat was not going to be of a five-star nature. So, I had a few doubts about how much I was going to enjoy the week: I mean, what’s so great about a big pile of sand anyway?
Teaching yoga to children in French: it was definitely in my stretch zone but I agreed to do it anyway. I’m glad I did as the experience has changed my expectations around what’s involved in teaching a yoga class to any age group.
I’ll admit that I don’t always find it easy to speak my mind. It is a very English trait. My worst nightmare is confrontation of any kind. I will tell the waitress that my meal was good when she clears the plates even if it it was actually a very bad time. I know it is disingenuous but l do it to avoid offence. Of course it can be a good thing to care about others’ feelings but when it paralyses you to act or speak your truth this is not constructive for anyone.
Given my naturally reserved nature, I’m always in awe of those who freely speak their mind with oomph and pizazz. Which brings me to this blog’s purpose: a celebration of Brooklyn’s residents. Continue reading “Be more Brooklyn”
Fortune graced me with the opportunity to spend two weeks in Paris in early December. It wasn’t my first trip so there was no need to play tourist bingo. Instead, I had the luxury of seeking out a few alternative highlights. Here are some of my favourite discoveries.
It was time for two and a half days of Wong time, attending a Chakra workshop series taught by Master Duncan Wong in Paris. I was there for the two base Chakra sessions: Muladhara (roots) and Swadhisthana (pleasure and self-expression). Having attended Duncan’s teacher training as part of a retreat in Italy I knew what I was letting myself in for – lots of energy, action, passion and knowledge. The main thing I felt during the workshops was my lack of strength and power. But I was in the right place to work on this.
As well as these two days of intensive yoga practice, my trip to Paris included a visit to the Rodin Museum to see the work of this nineteenth century master sculptor and painter. I clearly still had yoga on the brain because the toned muscularity of these sculptures was what struck me most, alongside their beauty and the skill of creating them. Some of the sculptures bore striking similarity to yoga poses…
Since completing my yoga teacher training, a few friends have said they would like to take the plunge too. They always admit this with some trepidation, as if it might be an unachievable goal, which of course it isn’t. This makes me smile because I know that if their heart is in it, they will have an incredible, positive experience and no regrets. So, for any prospective teacher trainees, here is my honest take on what it is like to commit to the mat and learn to teach yoga.
It was with great reluctance that I first stepped into the Roda; a small circle of French people clapping their hands and singing in Portuguese. The prospect of someone aiming a kick at me while I sheepishly ducked in the centre of the group didn’t fill me with joy.
But when you are living in a small village in a foreign country you are more willing to try new things to make friends. So it was that our estate agent Olivier (one of our closest friends in the village) convinced us to join him in his weekly Capoeira class.