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Paradise Yoga
Paradise Yoga

The Yoga

I like to think that Paradise Yoga is a little bit different to most other yoga studios. I believe that all people – regardless of age, ability, gender, background – deserve equal access to yoga.

Much of the yoga out there today seems available only to a narrow section of society – to people who are young, able-bodied, female, white, flexible, strong. 

Sometimes it seems as though you are expected to be some kind of ballet dancer or gymnast, before you even step onto the mat.

I have spent many years honing my method of teaching so that I can offer an inclusive practice that adapts the pose to suit each person’s body, rather than trying to force their body into a specific (often unattainable) shape.

As a result, I teach only gentle and accessible yoga, honouring all bodies and all things that come up on any given day. That means:

  • I offer lots of options for each pose
  • You can do your yoga in a chair if that feels good for you.
  • You and I can collaborate to find what feels best for you.
  • There is absolutely no expectation on you that you are flexible!

I will never focus on your physical ability. I am way more interested in using the tools of yoga to have an impact on your nervous system, your body and your mind – so that you feel good! 

I teach accessible yoga through the medium of Hatha Yoga, Yin Yoga, Restorative Yoga and Yoga Nidra. Here’s some more information on what those terms mean…

Hatha Yoga

Hatha Yoga has become a general term for much of the yoga taught in the West today.

It combines movement, breath and mindfulness to work on the body, mind, emotions, soul and more.

The Hatha Yoga that I teach is gentle, slow and simple – no difficult contortions or poses that add any stress into the body. The gentle nature of the class is designed to help students feel rejuvenated, refreshed, energised and vibrant.

I often describe my Hatha classes as “movement with breath”. Sometimes we do this sitting (you can choose to sit on the floor or in a chair). Sometimes we do this kneeling (if your knees don’t like that, I’ll give you an alternative). Sometimes we do this standing (that’s optional too.)

Most of the time, though, we do this lying down. Lying down and sighing out are the two main activities at Paradise Yoga! If getting down to the floor to lie down is not an option for you – don’t worry – you can do the same poses in a chair. 

You have four opportunities every week to practice Hatha Yoga with me:

  • Wednesdays, 10am
  • Wednesdays, 5pm
  • Thursdays, 5pm 
  • Saturdays, 8am

In addition, Hatha Yoga features at One-Day Retreats.

Yin Yoga

Yin Yoga is a practice of stillness. In this practice, we stay in each pose for quite a while – usually between three and five minutes (although you choose how long). And in between each pose, we relax and do nothing for one to two minutes.

The poses are probably not what you’re expecting. I won’t be inviting you to stay in a Downward Dog, or a Warrior Pose, for five minutes.

Mostly, we’re sitting or lying down. The poses can be done on the floor, or in a chair, or using the wall. 

You will be invited to relax all the muscles in your body. And then to relax even more.

This allows us to stretch very deeply – reaching into connective tissues, fascia, ligaments, tendons and even bones! But the stretch is very passive. We simply move slowly into the pose, let go… And the body does the rest for you.

It’s pretty hard to explain it. You have to do it to really understand it.

You have six opportunities every week to practice Yin Yoga at Paradise Yoga:

  • Wednesdays, 5pm
  • Wednesdays, 6.30pm
  • Thursdays, 10am
  • Thursdays, 5pm 
  • Fridays, 10am
  • Saturdays at 8am

Yin Yoga also features at One-Day Retreats, as well as at my Online Yin Studio.

If you’re experienced with the practice of Yin, you will LOVE my quarterly Deep Yin workshops too…

Yoga Nidra

Yoga Nidra means Yogic Sleep, and is my absolute favourite to practice and to teach.

There are two great things about Yoga Nidra:

  1. All you have to do is sit or lie down, and listen to my voice
  2. Thirty minutes of Yoga Nidra will provide you with the same restorative benefits as three hours of deep sleep

Whilst you’re relaxing, I will guide you through a ‘rotation of consciousness’ where you notice each part of your body in a sequence, followed by some guided meditations and visualisations. You may hear all of it. You may hear some of it. You may hear none of it.

Most people find that they drift off into a magical place (science calls it a ‘hypnagogic state’) somewhere between waking and sleeping. Some people fall asleep. Some people snore. It doesn’t matter. 

What matters is that you feel like a whole new human being, just thirty short minutes later…

Yoga Nidra can have profound effects on your body and mind, and is beneficial for everyone but especially those experiencing stress, anxiety, insomnia, chronic fatigue syndrome, mild depression, PTSD, chronic pain and more.

Anyone can participate in Yoga Nidra, although those suffering severe depression or mental illness are advised to discuss with the teacher and a healthcare professional beforehand.

You can find Yoga Nidra at Paradise Yoga as follows:

And I have a free Yoga Nidra recording on YouTube. Feel free to listen to this from the comfort of your own home.

Restorative Yoga

Restorative Yoga does what it says on the packet – it restores you. 

It can look very much like Yin Yoga from the outside.

It’s similar in that:

  1. Most of the poses are done sitting or lying down – on the floor or using a chair. 
  2. We stay in the poses for a longer time – sometimes five minutes or more.
  3. It’s a practice of stillness.

How it differs from Yin Yoga:

  1. We use more soft props – think blankets and bolsters – to support the body.
  2. We focus less on stretching and feeling strong sensations.
  3. We focus more on complete and utter relaxation.

How to get some Restorative Yoga in your life at Paradise Yoga:

  • Wednesdays at 10am – this class will invariably (although not always) feature some restorative poses.
  • Monthly at Zen Sessions, where the only physical yoga we do is Restorative Yoga.

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