GabriellaYoga Does Classes for Children Now Too!

Check out this link for more details on booking, terms and conditions and a comprehensive FAQ… I can’t wait to meet your babies ❤

Love and light

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Meditative Moments: Eating Mindfully

If you’re not sure Whether You Should Meditate then dash back here once you are!

Now that we all know we should settle in to a beautiful meditation practice, let’s get started… At first, it can feel daunting to take some time to ourselves and sit alone in a quiet room, with our eyes closed and no idea what to expect. So why not start with baby steps? Something we do every day, eating, can be turned into a meditative moment. Let us explain how to eat mindfully…

1) Cook Often

We always have excuses to reach for processed foods, pre-prepared dishes and ready-meals. We don’t have time to cook from scratch. That doesn’t wash! There are recipe books out there specifically for those who only have a matter of minutes to cook. Cooking from scratch is expensive. Erm, no. The other week, the UK’s most popular supermarket chain was offering three WHOLE CHICKENS for just £10. Home-cooked meals taste better too. So, that’s settled.

7 Sanskrit Words Used Most Often in Yoga

Other languages creep us out. It is a fact. As much as we’d hate to admit it, whenever we hear someone speaking a tongue which we don’t understand or aren’t fluent in, it puts us on edge. But usually, the languages we hear around us are at least modern languages, right? Often times, we can at least identify what language it is and where it comes from.

Sanskrit, the language of yoga, is different. Hardly a ‘modern’ language, Sanskrit has been around for thousands of years, and confusingly is most used not by a specific nationality or race (as such) but religion in Hinduism. This is often another concern/source of confusion for newbies on the yoga mat… You’re not here to pray or worship God, so why do you need to listen to religious words? Well, quite simply, yoga began in India and the majority of its practitioners initially would have been Hindu, hence it was easiest to use their shared language of Sanskrit. And why do we carry on with it now? To honour the tradition of course!

Should I Meditate?

Yes. Yes and ABSOLUTELY YES is the easy answer. However, if you still need convincing…

Are you stressed all the time? 

We all experience stressful situations every now and then, and there will always be some who handle them better than others. However, there are some people out there (more than we’d think!) who feel permanently stressed, anxious and concerned. So what can we do about it? How can we combat stress when we can’t eliminate what causes it (eg. work, family life, financial struggles etc). We can sit down and meditate. Even taking ten minutes a day to find a quiet space, close our eyes and listen to our breath can have a huge impact in terms of putting things into perspective and helping us to see that there is more to life than those things which set us on edge. A regular meditation practice can turn you from a worrier into a warrior!

What Are The Benefits of Hip-Openers in Yoga?

Some people love them, others detest them with a fiery passion. And yet hip-opening is such a strong focus of yoga practice that there is simply no escape… put up, or shut up. Whether we are exhaling into a deep warrior two, wobbling around in utthita hasta padangusthasana or ‘relaxing’ in reclining bound angle pose those hips are being pushed open and unlocking a lot of emotions as they go. Here are just four answers to the age-old question, “Why do we practice hip-openers?”

Hip-Openers Fight Modern Life

Whether we spend most of our time sitting down in an office chair or driving around on the motorway, our hips are often resting closed. With this comes tightness, discomfort, a lack of lubrication to the joints and a big old bunch of mobility issues that will come back to bite us in the ass in later years (if they have not already!) Hip-opening yoga postures can help to prevent and reduce these sorts of issues and boost the overall health of the practitioner.

Using Yoga to Burn Off Fat

Regardless of what some fitness trainers will tell you, if you put the effort in to yoga you can totally get a body you love… The only difference is, that yoga sees you as a whole person and takes a two-pronged ‘attack’; conditioning, strengthening and toning the physical body, whilst working on the emotional being within so that you can learn to be happy and comfortable within the space you occupy. A more holistic approach to losing weight whereby self-acceptance and self-love is key promotes a healthy body image tends to manifest in longer-lasting results and a much happier way of living.

Here are five tips for amping up your yoga practice:

1) Try the more advanced variations of postures…

How To Make The Most of A Private Yoga Session

Private sessions in anything can be understandably more expensive than group sessions, so how can you get more bang for your buck during a private yoga session? How can you make the time you are paying for really count?

Well, the real question is, what do you want to get from practicing yoga? Once you have identified that, make it clear to your instructor as soon as you book the session and the rest will fall into place…

“I want to improve my health with yoga!”

Many private yoga students are looking to lose weight, lower their blood pressure, improve the quality of their sleep, eliminate anxiety or boost their energy. There are yoga postures specifically designed to work towards these goals, and a good yoga instructor will ensure that the pace and content of the class is tailored to your specific needs.

How to Keep a Yoga Journal

As mentioned in Creating New Year’s Resolutions You’ll Stick To… the power of writing things down is not to be underestimated. Once you put future tasks and goals in writing you automatically feel more accountable, and writing updates on your goals can be a great way to assess if you are still on track or whether you need to replan.

Yoga journaling is something which hundreds of yogis carry out world-wide. Some use it to monitor their progress in rehabilitating after injuries, or working towards more challenging postures. Others jot down their favorite breathing techniques, asanas or sequences so that they can come back to them at a later date. And there are some that will write everything from a song they enjoyed flowing with, their thought processes during class, or a book their teacher recommended.

Some Beautiful Mantras to Take into 2015…

Here at GabriellaYoga, we are loving these following mantras, phrases and affirmations. There are millions out there… at least one to suit every intention. But these can get us all started on the right path. If you find yourself being really drawn to one, just jot it down or print it off and stick it up somewhere where you are likely to see it every day. Something will start to shift ❤ *Credit given to the graphic designers who created these images… some of them are credited on the image itself, others have designers unknown to the team here…*

*You are a vibration of positive change!*

Yoga4Autism with GabriellaYoga

This month I went on one of the most valuable courses I have ever attended. As I have recently been working privately with two autistic brothers, aged 11 and 13, I have been desperate to gain some specialist knowledge on the true benefits of yoga for autism. Honestly, teaching these two boys is the highlight of my week! To begin, I was teaching the boys in very much a similar way as I do with adult private sessions, only using some of my own common sense, compassion and experiences with children’s yoga to make adaptations here and there. But I really wanted to learn some specific exercises which the boys could really truly benefit from.

Yoga4Autism is founded by Aspergers, dyspraxia and dyslexia-diagnosed David Ellams; an absolutely wonderful guy, who knows first-hand how magical yoga is and how it is a tool which everyone can use in order to improve their mental, physical, emotional, behavioural and neurological health. Having struggled through his childhood and teenage years and even corporate life post-university David found yoga (or yoga found him!) and he has reaped the benefits a thousandfold.