‘a nice girl like me’

An honest post on how I got into yoga (contains subjects around domestic violence)

A tiny hut in Key West is where my yoga journey began. I remember my first class well – the tightness in my body, my arms shaking in downward facing dog and thinking how the teacher looked so graceful whilst I felt like I could hardly move. The feeling I got after the class though and what I experienced during savasana had me hooked. I remember thinking “I want to teach this I need to tell other people how amazing yoga is.”

This was 1997 and I would not embark on my teacher training until 2010. Why take so long? Well there are many reasons as to why I took this stop gap and I would like to share just a little bit with you about my own personal journey. Many of us have our issues growing up and it is rare to make it to adulthood completely unscathed. My issues centred around feelings of abandonment, loss, rejection, and abuse. Being adopted, the traumatic loss of my adopted dad at 13, plus years of mistrust and abuse that followed. This all left me with an exceptionally low opinion of myself and a lack of self-worth, which then led me to a violent relationship. 

Why am I sharing this? Well part of me wants people to understand how ‘ a nice girl like me’, as has been said to me numerous times, can end up being the victim of domestic violence. I also want to share how powerful yoga can be in the journey to healing the past. 

I never wanted to be seen as a victim I knew how much strength it had taken to leave this relationship, but without the distractions and chaos that this brought I was left alone to face my demons and it wasn’t easy. I turned to drink, another abusive relationship and behaviours that would mean I did not have to feel what I was experiencing, which was physically painful and mentally challenging. Through my yoga practice and counselling I began the road to recovery. It was tough and there were times when I wanted to run out of the room. I would miss sessions by practicing avoidance, convincing myself I no longer enjoyed the class or did not like my counsellor anymore.

I kept going though. One of my favourite inspirational quotes is by Winston Churchill “if you’re going through hell, keep going”, and that is exactly what I did.

The word yoga means to be present and to be embodied, to notice what is really going on both physically and mentally. You cannot escape you. I enjoy this practice now – noticing how my body feels physically, where I am holding my tension and how I am feeling emotionally. I listen to my feelings and responses with a sense of curiosity and interest. Through yoga I understand that I am not defined by my past and these experiences have actually equipped me with a huge understanding and empathy towards others, an ability to bear witness to the stories of other peoples’ pain.

It is my belief we can all heal from our past, whether you are on a journey like myself or want to increase your sense of wellness and are curious how yoga movements and mediation can help. The teachings offer us all an insight into how we can help ourselves and navigate our way on our true path.

I wish you well on your journey,

With warmth,

Maria

Cheshire Yoga Babies New 2021 Term Times


Explore, play & relax – enjoy the benefits of Yoga for you and your baby. * Babies from 6 weeks to 18 months

Class Times & Locations

Tuesdays 1130am and 1pm at InHale Yoga Studio, 1st Floor Progress House, Cecil Road, Hale WA15 9NZ

Thursdays 10am at Lymm Heritage Centre, 1 Legh St Lymm WA13 0DA

NEW 2021 Term Times

Tuesday InHale Yoga 1130am (babies from 6 weeks to crawling)

Tuesday InHale Yoga 1pm (mobile babies up to 18 months)

5th, 12th, 19th, 26th Jan 2nd & 9th Feb (last class)

Thursday Lymm Heritage 10am (babies from 12 weeks)

7th, 14th, 21st & 28th Jan, 4th & 11th Feb (last class)

Cost for either 6 week term £48  (terms & conditions below

To book your place visit the online store below or  contact info@mariayoga.co.uk

 

The Benefits of Mother & Baby Yoga

For Baby:

Helps settle baby, improving your baby’s sleeping patterns

Interactive and physical activity helps to strengthen & aid your baby’s development

Stimulates the baby’s bodily systems, including digestive and nervous systems

Aids digestion, which can help to ease constipation, wind and colic

Bonding – enhances the relationship between you & your baby

New challenges helping your baby to cope with new situations

Helps strengthen your baby’s body including their spine

Promotes muscle strength and joint flexibility

Introduces techniques to help your baby relax and become a natural self-soother.

For Mum:

Improves your posture, strength and flexibility which will help with lifting and carrying your growing baby

Post-natal exercises to tone the abdominal muscles and pelvic floor

Release physical and mental tension with Yoga stretches and breathing

Relaxation techniques to help you to cope with the stresses of new parenthood

Bonding – spend special time with you and your baby exploring new challenges and having fun

Get to know other mums, dads or carers and share experiences.

Testimonials

This class has been my favourite, I’ve loved it all and feel I have genuinely improved my pelvic floor. I’m now more aware of doing my exercises etc. So just wanted to say a massive thank you! You’re great! – G.C.

New Classes at Lymm Heritage Centre

New Classes beginning this September at Lymm Heritage Centre

Tuesdays Vinyasa Flow Yoga 615pm – 715pm (Open Level Class)

Tuesdays Pregnancy Flow Yoga 730pm – 830pm (2nd/3rd Trimester)

Thursdays Mum & Baby Yoga 10am – 11am (babies from 12 weeks)

Pre Book Only due to covid-19 procedures. Please bring your own mat.

If you require more information on classes please contact Maria info@mariayoga.co.uk otherwise visit the online store below to book your place.

Why it’s great to be grateful.

If you’ve been to class recently you may have heard me mention showing gratitude or being thankful for our practice. Well there’s a reason for this as after some recent research it appears that being grateful really does have a positive effect on our emotional brain. In fact it’s a sign of emotional well being and intelligence. Even the process of thinking and searching for something to feel thankful about enhances the production of serotonin and dopamine(feel good hormones) automatically lifting our mood and making us feel better. Although this isn’t a natural process for most of us we have to remember to do this. So why not get yourself a gratitude jar…..a friend brought me one of these a few years ago which you fill with notes of anything that you’re thankful for. Or pop a reminder on your fridge…What am I Grateful for today? Try asking yourself this now. For me it’s having an opportunity to help out a friend and fellow yoga teacher this morning by covering his class last minute, having food in my cupboards and time in my day to practice Yoga.

Gratitude requires thought but it’s by giving it some attention that we begin to feel it’s benefits. Perhaps take a moment to sit with these thoughts of thankfulness in meditation you’ll be surprised how good it feels. And lastly our deepest sense of gratitude comes through grace and being humble, if you can cultivate these feelings alongside whatever your object of gratitude is placed on you’ll find it quite impossible to feel negative, no matter how hard things get there is also something you can find to feel grateful for.

Pregnancy Flow Yoga Classes

 

Tuesdays 730pm – 830pm at Lymm Heritage Centre, 1 Legh St. Lymm WA13 0DA

Pre book as only 6 per class. 

£60 for 6 weeks guarantees a place or £10 drop in if a space becomes free. 

Classes are created for the 2nd and 3rd trimester or pregnancy. 

Benefits of practicing Prenatal Yoga?

Yoga strengthens the body helping it to cope with the extra weight of carrying your baby. Yoga poses focus on correct postural alignment helping women to understand the changes and effects pregnancy can have on their bodies.

Regular practice can help relieve physical tension and stresses from the body, which often build up as a result of the baby growing, circulation is improved so that swelling due to the extra fluid and blood flow is less likely, this also assists with lymphatic drainage enhancing immunity and creating a healthier environment for you and your baby.

Practicing Yoga whilst pregnant can help to lift your mood at a time when you can feel overwhelmed. Yoga helps you to accept and understand the changes that may be occurring hormonally and the effects this can have both physically and physiologically.

Pregnancy Yoga incorporates various breathing techniques to calm the nervous system helping you to feel more relaxed through pregnancy, these breathing exercises are also beneficial during labour helping you to stay calm and in control no matter what path the birth takes.

Meditation and Visualisation exercises help deal with anxiety and quieten an over active mind aiding relaxation, better sleep and an overall greater sense of wellbeing.

Yoga for Pregnancy – One to One sessions available

Each session lasts for 1 hour and can be taken at your home address or chosen location. Visit the online store to book a class or 1:1

Gift vouchers are available.

 

New Live Online Weekly Classes

Choose from Weekly Live Stream Vinyasa Flow and Restorative Yoga Classes

Live Stream Yoga Classes via Zoom

Vinyasa Flow Yoga Mondays 6pm and Fridays 930am

Restorative Yoga – Thursdays 7pm

Visit the Online Store to book a class


The Zoom meeting ID and password will be sent at the time of booking. All classes are £6 drop in

Just a couple of considerations before you practice.

Make sure you have a yoga mat and there’s plenty of space around you.

Do not practice straight after eating and do drink plenty of water after class.

Enjoy your practice and if you do have any feedback or requests on future classes I’d love to hear from you.

ONLINE CLASSES DISCLAIMER
No refunds will be made once the class has commenced.
If you have any injuries or medical conditions including pregnancy, it is essential that you consult your doctor prior to taking part.
By joining the class you are accepting full responsibility for your own safety and recognise that in absence of a physically present teacher, it is your responsibility ensure that you stay within your own physical limits.

5 Immune Boosting Tips

This time of year can be especially difficult to keep the bugs at bay. It’s been so cold and wet recently I’ve felt my immune and lymphatic system has been pushed to it’s limits.

If you’ve been feeling the strain then here are 5 handy immune boosting tips that I use to help restore some balance and encourage my immunity to thrive.

1. Sleep ….ah the elusive sleep. I’ve had my fair share of sleep deprivation which has made me realise just how important this is. That and reading Why we Sleep by Matthew Walker (highly recommended). Amongst other things our body heals and repairs when we sleep. If you’re finding it difficult to get your full 8 hours then try yoga nidra (awakened sleep) this will help you rest and recharge even if you practice for 20 mins. Visit my free mediations for a guided yoga nidra practice.

2. Warm foot baths. My latest obsession to give my lymphatic system a boost. I was recently made aware of the benefits of these foot baths and now do them when either working on my laptop…yes my feet are submerged right now or when watching the tv. Our lymphatic system is mainly stimulated when we move which isn’t great for sedentary workers. However soaking your feet in warm water (I like to add lavender and epsom salts also) helps to boost our lymphatic flow, remember this system is part of your immune system helping to fight infection.

3. Exercise. Whether it’s yoga, boot camps or walking that you prefer. Make sure you get some exercise. This is so beneficial to our immunity. When we exercise we also secrete happy hormones these help to counteract our stress hormones which break down our immunity. Exercising also stimulates our respiratory and cardiovascular systems.

4. Fresh Air. It’s free and usually fresh…. depending on where you live of course! Getting outdoors definitely lifts my mood even if it’s just a brisk walk to the school gates. Being outside and also around nature can help to put problems into perspective and give us a deeper understanding of ourselves. Whether it’s the beach or a woodland find some time to get outdoors.

5. Vitamins and Probiotics. Yes I’m a fan of supplements, gut health is so important for our immunity. Its not always easy getting the right balance through our diets so I believe supplements are necessary. If your not sure contact your local nutritionist for more help and advice.

Yin Yoga for Deep Rest

Yin Yoga for Deep Rest – upon arrival you will be greeted with a relaxing herbal tea. We will then begin the practice with a seated meditation to find stillness preparing us for a grounding Yin Yoga flow. This is then followed by Restorative Yoga using bolsters and props for extra support where we can feel safe to deeply let go of unwanted physical and emotional tension. We end the session with an aromatherapy infused Savasana and Yoga Nidra (guided Relaxation)

£20 session includes tea and healthy treat to finish.

Next sessions Friday 17th April & 22nd May 630pm – 830pm at Hale Yoga Studio, Ashley Road, Hale Village

Booking essential as spaces are limited – book via the button below

Exploring the Chakras Workshop

Exploring the Chakras Workshop – Saturday 25th January 2020 @haleyogastudios 2pm – 430pm

Chakras are the bridge between the conscious mind and our bodies. These energy centres govern our physical and emotional well being. However certain influences from conditioning, lifestyle and past issues can affect there overall function and ability to create harmony within.
Join me for an opportunity to explore this energectic system and the self through movement, relaxation, chanting and meditation. A chance to balance, heal and transform built up stress and tensions. The yoga will include meditative yin, slow flow yoga and grounding restorative postures. We will complete the afternoon with Yoga Nidra (often referred to as yogic sleep) to fully relax the senses and to set clear intentions (sankalpa) so we may continue our transformational journey.
Workshop includes herbal tea on arrival and healthy treat to finish.

2pm – 430pm Saturday 25th April 2020

Held at Hale Yoga Studio, Ashley Road, Hale www.haleyoga.com

Workshop costs £25 – booking is necessary as this is a small studio and spaces are limited. Contact info@mariayoga.co.uk to book or use the Book Your Place button below

Winter Solstice Flow & Restore

Winter Solstice Flow & Restore

Winter a magical season and a time for nurturing, self reflection and rest. However we seem to do anything but, as the festive season sees us burning the candle at both ends. It’s no wonder we find ourselves comprised and exhausted.

So why not give yourselves a well deserved break and join me for an opportunity to explore the self through movement, relaxation and meditation.
The yoga will include slow vinyasa flow, and grounding restorative postures to release any accumulated tension and restore balance. We will complete the afternoon with an aromatherapy infused Yoga Nidra (often referred to as yogic sleep) to fully relax the senses and to set an intention (sankalpa) for the season ahead. Workshop includes herbal tea on arrival and healthy treat to finish.

2pm – 430pm Saturday 21st December 2019

Held at Hale Yoga Studio, Ashley Road, Hale WA15 9SD

Workshop costs £25 – booking is necessary as this is a small studio and spaces are limited. Book via the Button below