Yoga For Alkaline Longevity - By Laurella Fox-Pitt
Our great friend Laurella Fox-Pitt is such an inspiration when it comes to encouraging people to start integrating yoga into their lifestyle. Her passion is so infectious and her classes leave you feeling so at peace. The alkaline way is all about reducing the stress on your body. Stress is highly acid forming and one of the main causes of disease. Investing time in a yoga practice that will not only strengthen your body, but also your mind, is one of the best things you can do for lifelong health. Here are some tips from Laurella .
- Practice regularly: Yoga can be very disheartening when we are not consistent. Just like any skill we need to practice in order to reap the rewards. I often liken yoga to sweeping the dust, it needs to be done regularly so good energy flows through the body and mind and anything that felt stagnant and closed is released and liberated. It can be 20 minutes, a light dusting; but the more you do the more you will enjoy it.
- Slow it down: Don't confuse your practice with a work out. It might well feel like that on days when you get hot and sweaty and you can certainly enjoy that, but the magic of yoga is found in its slow meditative flow. We spend far too much time hurrying around, so make yoga your time to be slow, lengthen the breath and move more consciously. Not being so rushed gives us time to listen and feel the stillness, creating space in our body and mind.
- Finding wisdom through your personal practice: Developing your own practice is so liberating. Letting go of perfection, just allow yourself to explore. It can be very simple, a few round of sun salutations, keeping the breath smooth and steady, checking in with your body, listening to your bodies wisdom - what needs strengthening, massaging, opening? It is good to go to class but beginning to move at your own breath pace and turning your practice into your own moving meditation is empowering and up-lifting. It's a great test of discipline! Once you are happy with a simple flow you can begin to explore some more challenging places but you can always come back to the simplicity of the breath if that's what feels good
- The breath is life: Tapping into the power of the breath is transformational and while we are busy concentrating on the "workout" we are missing yoga's greatest gift. The breath feeds the body. I often say to my students to ride the breath. Like they were surfing a wave, we let the breath guide us through our practice. We can also use specific breathing techniques, two of my favourites are Nadi Shodana or alternate nostril breathing, which is a stabilising breath that helps to balance both sides of the brain. It can be used simply to relax as well as for anxiety and insomnia. The other is Kapalabati or skull shining breath, which is an invigorating breath that leaves you light and energised and stimulates the fire in your belly both mentally and physically! Techniques for both can be found on my blog.