A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of teaching some of your kids yoga. Each time that I do this, I'm amazed and humbled by their sense of presence and their ability to surrender to the practice. As they spend time on the mat moving and breathing, they are practicing mindfulness not only with where they are moving their bodies in space and with the shapes that they're creating, but also with how they are working with their minds. What does it feel like to soar into eagle pose with ease? Or to fall out of tree pose again and again when the person to the left is super steady? Or to feel restless in mountain pose, frustrated in crow and confident in full wheel? All these things that come up act as a sort of training and teach them about persistence, perseverance, focus, concentration, contentment and so much more.
Bruce Lee once said, "Under duress, we do not rise to our expectations. We fall to our level of training."
I love this quote not only because I have a son who's passionate about all things/people karate-related, but because it reminds me of what we're all (kids and adults alike) doing when we practice yoga and meditation. We're training. With any mindfulness practice, we train in attention and presence and kindness. We train for how we might react to the ups and downs that life throws us. We train for how we might respond to others in the face of stress and frustration. We train for how we might treat ourselves when we've missed the mark. We train in the certainty of uncertainty. We train in happiness.
According to Patanjali's yoga sutras, yoga is defined as a state in which the fluctuations/ stirrings of the mind are no longer dominant, and that freedom from these fluctuations comes from consistent practice. So, the energy and efforts we put forth in our mindfulness/ wellness practices (training) and the many hours we log can truly create a shift - a shift toward presence, toward intention, toward equanimity and toward compassion.
This fall, I've begun to integrate the therapeutic use of essential oils into my wellness offerings because they are also incredibly effective in helping to create a shift in our bodies and minds. Did you know that inhaling pure essential oils directly affects our limbic system, the part of our brain concerned with instinct, mood and emotions? And that essential oils topically applied to our skin get absorbed into our bloodstream within minutes? So, it's true, essential oils can help to create a shift on a physiological level (lavender for calming, cedarwood for grounding, vetiver for creating focus, peppermint for refreshment, and the list goes on and on). And this shift can be so profound and important, too.
For more on these ideas of training and creating a shift (on any level), I'm excited to offer these classes, discussions and workshops for both adults and kids below.
- November 4, 6-7:15pm Essential Oils for Moms & Daughters Join my daughter Isabel and me in our LES apartment and learn about how to use essential oils to promote an overall sense of health and well-being, why they're effective and where to source them. For moms and daughters/ nieces/ friends (10-14 years old). $10/ per person. Light snacks provided. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- November 5, 12-2:30pm Get Grounded: Find Ease in Autumn with Yoga & Nutrition @ The Shala, Union Square. $45. Read more & register here.
November 6, 4-5:15pm Essential Oils for Families Join me at my LES apartment for a casual discussion on how you can use pure therapeutic grade essential oils as part of your personal & family health care regimen. As we move deeply into the fall and anticipate the intensity of the holidays, learn how specific essential oils relate to immune health, digestion, sleep, focus and more. Hope you can join! FREE. RSVP to email@example.com.
November 8 Kids' Yoga Classes As many kids are out of school on election day, I'll be teaching yoga class (drop-off) in my LES apartment specifically for them. Time: 8:45-9:45am for 5-8 year olds & 10-11am for 9-14 year olds. Cost: $20/child + $10/sibling(s). RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org
As always, please feel free to reach out if you're interested in scheduling a private yoga/ nutrition session with me & drop into my group classes anytime (schedule follows).
Tuesday: 7:45-8:45pm, Home Studio (Lower East Side - contact for address), all levels vinyasa
Wednesday: 12-1:25pm, The Shala (815 Broadway, NY, NY 10003) int/adv
Friday: 9:15-10:15am, Home Studio (Lower East Side - contact for address), all levels vinyasa
I'm looking forward to connecting with you! Please let me know if you have any questions/ comments. I'd love to hear.
May we train well, inspire one another to do the same and experience the shifting, changing and growing as it comes.