All Doshas
How Yoga Can Help Developing Consciousness

What does yoga mean to you?

To me, yoga is a life path in which you devote yourself to rediscovering the relationship between yourself and the universe. Yoga helps you control the fluctuations of your mind, and when your mind is under control, you can stand still in your own nature.

How has it changed you?

Yoga helped me get off a train that was going super-fast and to relearn to walk consciously through life. Everything goes slower now: my breath, my reactions to life events, my life in general. Yoga dictates and guides my lifestyle.

What surprises you most about yoga?

How it helps people develop a self-consciousness of their own. Even by just practising Asanas consistently, your relationship with yourself starts to change as you become more conscious of your body, realising all the things and habits that are good for you, that resonate with you. Changing your diet, drinking more water, sleeping early, paying attention to your breath, observing your posture – these are all very little changes that come to any new yoga student, all without the teacher having to induce or push them.

What does a holistic lifestyle mean to you?

A holistic lifestyle means incorporating all the layers of the self: body, energy, emotions, mind and higher self.

What’s the one thing you would encourage everyone to try to improve their health?

Conscious breathing. This is the exercise of observing your breath, of being conscious of how you are doing it, of using 100% of your lungs – rather than the automatic shallow breath that comes when we’re busy or stressed. Everything comes after that.

What do you like most about teaching yoga?

The opportunity to help people get to know themselves. Just as it did with me, yoga helps build a relationship with your physical body, and this ends up reconnecting with all the other parts of your being: energetically, emotionally and throughout the mind.

Where and when do you like to practise yoga?

Somewhere secluded and quiet, ideally in nature or the open air. This helps you focus completely on your breath and movement, and once this happens you enter a meditative state – almost trance-like – that allows you to come to balance and match the frequencies around you. Nature offers the natural healthy vibrations we all need to stay integrally healthy. Any time of the day is good, but it will impact you differently. Practising in the early morning gives me energy for the day and practising at night helps me find relaxation and improves the quality of my sleep so much. I usually practise in the morning to fit my daily rituals and schedule.

What’s your favourite type of yoga?

Yoga is way broader than just practising a series of Asanas. My favourite is probably Kriya yoga, yoga “of action”, though I don’t practise it often. Kriya yoga is a very specific combination of postures, pranayamas (breathing techniques), mudras (hand positions) and mantras (chanting) that accelerate spiritual development.

When you’re teaching, do you plan your classes in advance?

Only specific ones. When I plan, I set up an intention: to work a certain area of the body, or work my way to a specific Asana, or maybe take into account the moon phase we’re in and start developing sequences that help get to that intention. Workshops are usually designed according to types of postures and different themes: handstands, back bending, foundations, pranayamas, etc. I adapt my classes to my students. Props like blocks and straps helps make Asanas less extreme for the body parts that are not used to practice. If you can’t reach the ground with your hand, bring the ground up with a block; if can’t hold your toes, use a strap… I want people to enjoy yoga and come back. I also follow the principle of Ahimsa: no violence – respect the limits of your body.

Is there something new about yoga that you would like to explore?

I’m always open to new trends that have a heart and a purpose. I’d like to explore therapeutic yoga and Acro yoga.

Therapeutic yoga goes hand in hand with physical therapy; it’s a new branch of yoga more designed to work one-on-one with people who have special conditions, and also to put more detail into customising the practice to adapt to specific needs that vary from one body to the other. Not everybody can do a backbend in the same way and get the same benefits from it. Acro yoga is a relatively new branch of yoga, it’s partner yoga and more in the line of acrobatics and circus, so it’s super fun to explore!

Do you find differences when you teach men and women?

Not really. I have classes with super flexible men and super stiff women and vice versa – it all depends on their lifestyle. Men’s hips are often stiffer than women’s, but that’s where props come in handy. To keep a posture interesting for all levels, you can guide a person with flexible hips into the final variation of a hip posture and let the individuals with stiff hips work with blankets and blocks to adapt the posture to their own body.

In modern life, more women practice yoga than men – how can we balance this out?

I would tell men that yoga is a preventative medicine, it’s all a health decision, and once you get yourself onto the mat, you’re going to see how this practice enhances all the other areas of your life.

And finally, can you give us your top three yoga tips?

Firstly, if you want to go deeper on a posture, deepen your breath first. Secondly, adapt the posture to your body and not the other way. And it’s all about the process – not about getting somewhere.

Find Balance

Are you living as your true self?

Integrate Ayurvedic wisdom into your life and start a lifelong journey of beauty and wellbeing.

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