I have developed a passion for yoga recently, it gives me the room to explore myself and the opportunity to push myself beyond my physical limits. I tried yoga many years ago but found it too slow and boring. I needed something more dynamic so jogging has been my favourite sport for more than 20 years.
Having heard about all the benefits associated with Yoga, including increased strength, balance and flexibility, lower blood pressure, and improved mental health, I decided to give myself a new chance. I took part in a free Yoga session arranged by HiYoga last Christmas. The class was divided into two parts – Ashtanga, a more vigorous style of yoga followed by the slow relaxing Yin yoga. Ashtanga yoga was tough enough for me with headstand and bridge poses, an old back injury and a chronic shoulder infection would put a stop to it, I might never manage to reach such a high-level, but I liked the challenges and in particular, the spiritual aspect of yoga.
After trying some of the most common styles of yoga, I have settled on Jivamukti yoga. Founded by David Life and Sharon Gannon in 1984, Jivamukti means “liberation while living”. This is a vinyasa-style practice with theme-based classes. A new theme is introduced at the beginning of every month and then discussed throughout the month. Chanting and music are a part of the practice, and the students are encouraged to apply the yogic philosophy to their daily life. Jivamukti yoga suits me well as it provides me with the physical challenges and at the same time, helps me to maintain my mental balance.
During a yoga session, gradually, I feel unattached to the outside world while my inner world opens up. At the end of the practice, lying on the mat, with the lights turned off, all the thoughts and concerns become light and subtle, they are still there but flying around in a harmonious and harmless way.
My Jivamukti yoga teacher Camilla is very supportive, and she always takes time to give a light neck massage to the participants at the end of the class – an extra comfort that is truly appreciated. Silje is another excellent Jivamukti yoga teacher, her gentle approach makes this otherwise rather dynamic session a relaxing and enjoyable journey.
After 3 1/2 months´ yoga practice, I have managed to do the bridge pose, not a perfect one though