Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Yoga Workshop 29 January in Hoxton

A workshop ideal for anyone who wishes to take their understanding of asana and their own body in asana further than what can be achieved in a normal yoga class setting.

Come and explore in depth some of the most common asanas taught in your regular class. It may be the poses you can take ‘on autopilot’ but lack a true understanding of, or it may be the asanas that still elude you but you don’t know why.

We will teach you the basic anatomical and mechanical functions of a pose to give you an idea of the building blocks that make each asana work. The emotional and spiritual significance of each pose will also be covered. Once you have this knowledge, you will know better how to approach and deepen a pose safely and with ease. You will also know when to hold back and the reasons why.

The emphasis is on learning in order to apply what you have learned immediately to your practice because, as Sri K Pattabhi Jois once said, “Yoga is 99% practice and 1% theory”!

All levels welcome and catered for. Beginners need to have attended a minimum of five yoga classes prior to this workshop. Yoga mats, blocks and straps are provided.

About your teachers:

Jane Bowyer is a REPs Level 3 yoga teacher. She describes herself as a spiritual being with over 16 years of yoga practice. A teacher since 2004. Because she was never a naturally flexible person, she feels she is living proof that everyone can acquire supple body through yoga. Her influences are Sivananda, Ashtanga, Jivamukti, Yin yoga, Iyengar and Hatha.

Adèle Craciun is a REPs Level 3 yoga teacher, who began practicing 12 years ago to help her combat stressrelated illness. She has been teaching since 2007, finding solace and inspiration in many different yoga styles. She has a particular interest in anatomy and kinesiology. Adèle is also a REPs Level 3 Pilates Instructor.

Cost: £30 in advance or £35 on the day
Contact: or

Thought for the Day - Past the limit

On a given day, a given circumstance, you think you have a limit. And you then go for this limit and you touch the limit, and you think, 'Okay, this is the limit'. As soon as you touch this limit, something happens and you suddenly can go a little bit further. With your mind power, your determination, your instinct, and the experience as well, you can fly very high.

Ayrton Senna

Monday, 20 December 2010

Latin American Elderly Project - Chair Yoga without the chair!

I'm so proud, I just had to share this pic of my LAEP students at Claremont Project in Angel.

I've been teaching them chair-based yoga in Spanish for almost a year now and look how they've progressed - Virabhadrasana I without a chair. They do a mean Utkatasana too!

This was earlier today and the last lesson of the year. I hope the group can find new funding for the project cos I'd love to be part of their yoga journey a little longer. And to improve my appalling Spanish tambien!

Sunday, 19 December 2010

Seven days for £7 at Sequinpark Women's Gym, Upper Street, N1

This is one of the friendliest gyms in town, and I'm not just saying that because I'm nice and happen to teach there!

But don't take my word for it, try it out! The gym is doing a special deal up until Monday 17 January - seven days membership for £7. That includes all classes, use of the gym and the steam room for that much-needed post work-out pamper. Bargain!

There's a special Christmas time table if you're itching to get going. Otherwise, I look forward to catching up with you in the New Year for Restorative Yoga (Wed 20.00-21.00) and Pilates (Fri 17.30-18.30).

See you on and off the mat!

Monday, 13 December 2010

Sunday, 14 November 2010

Pop Up Yoga studio - a hidden gem on Upper Street, N1

On Wednesday, I was doing my usual pit-stop at Euphorium Bakery on Upper Street (after 8pm it's buy-one-get-one-free and their Muesli Bread is out of this world) when I noticed this sign literally next door:

I thought I'd try the place out the following night when I unexpectedly had a class cancellation, hence a night off - it's like the universe was sorting it all out for me!

The studio didn't look like much from the outside, but once I walked in and off the busy high street, I was met by the most welcoming and tranquil, candle-lit space, and by one of the teachers, Wendy:

She took me through a well-paced Hatha Yoga session (I mentioned I'd had a tough day in the office and was feeling stiff and tired) with just the right balance of work and relaxation. Wendy trained with TriYoga and is keen on precision and alignment and, as you know, so am I so it was just perfect.

Afterwards I felt utterly relaxed and ready for bed. I just could not believe that I was on my own in there - not enough people know about this fab little studio and I feel it's my obligation to spread the word.

Wendy and her business partner/fellow teacher Kerry have created a very elegant yet functional space, offering a generous timetable and you won't be packed into a massive room like sardines - this is a small place where the teacher has time to give your practice individual attention.

In case you're still looking for a reason to check it out, Pop Up Yoga are doing a special November deal of bring a friend for free - that makes it a measly £5 per class - so not only can you get a quality yoga session for an absolute bargain, you can buy artisan bread on the way out.

Enjoy this before it's gone - it ain't called pop-up for nothing - and tell your friends.

If you don't like it, I'll eat my mat!

Monday, 25 October 2010

Yoga in the Park goes indoors Sunday 7 November

It's time for another yoga session, courtesy of North London Yoga Meetup Group.

But as autumn has well and truly arrived, it makes practicing in the great outdoors a little more tricky since, even on a sunny day, the ground tends to be wet and cold.

So Meetup organiser Denyse has instead found us a marvellous indoor venue (very near the place where we did the outdoor sessions) - Christ Church Highbury - where we will do a 75 min practice followed by nibbles and chatting.

For those who might feel a bit intimidated by coming along on their own, thinking we're a bunch of cliquey Cirque du Soleil acrobats, have no fear. We have a healthy addiction to all things yoga and are a really friendly bunch of mixed ability yogis and yoginis.

See you Sunday 7 November at 2.15pm for a 2.30pm start.

Friday, 15 October 2010

Free tickets to the yoga show! has got 5000 free tickets to The Yoga Show to give away. I'm sure there's a catch - like you will be getting emails from third parties - but hey, nothing is completely for free...

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

The Yoga Show - 29 30 31 October, London Olympia

Olympia is opening its doors once again to welcome yoga fans from all over the world. Yep, it's time for The Yoga Show 2010, and I am particularly excited as I won't be working on a stand this year, which means I can go to all the workshops and demos without running the risk of talking too much and subsequently losing my voice like I did last year.

As often happens with these trade shows, there is everything from top notch teachers giving great workshops and stalls selling anything you need (or don't really need) for your practice to the slightly more gimmicky stuff - chocolate meditation and chocolate yoga anyone? Sigh. Actually, David Sye in this case...

It's cheapest to buy tickets online - £10 for a day, but there is so much to do and see that I'd recommend getting the weekend pass for £16. And those of you who don't like crowds should go on the Friday, which is still busy but nothing like Saturday or Sunday. And it's cheaper to get in - £7.

For a chance to win tickets, email and put 'Two ticket to the Yoga Show please!' in the subject field.

If you want to jazz up your yoga wardrobe, get some new equipment or buy any other trinkets, Sunday afternoon is the ideal time for you as the stands usually drop their prices to get rid of stock. Haggle with a smile! Tends to work for me.

I hope to see many of you at the show. I am giving seva for Yoga Professionals (stand F18) Sunday 10am to 1pm. Please come by and say hello!

Though for the day - Gratitude

Thanks to my sister-in-law Kinga, who found this poster somewhere in the streets of Shanghai.

Monday, 6 September 2010

Yoga in the park Sunday 5 September

'From small beginnings come great things.'

If you're not in this picture, you missed out on a lovely yoga gathering in Highbury Fields, courtesy of North London Yoga Meetup Group.

Sure it did rain a smidge (it's near enough compulsory in London in September), but the temperature was perfect and our sun salutations brought the sun out, eventually.

And the picnic nibbles were much appreciated afterwards as it seems outdoor yoga works up quite an appetite.

A big thanks to Justine, Denyse, Lucy and Marianne for taking part, cos let's face it, without the people it'd just be me, alone in the park, talking to myself...

Denyse is already scouting for an indoor venue for the next Sunday session - 3 October - and until then I'm quite looking forward to seeing Eat Pray Love with a bunch of fellow yogis and yoginis. That's Monday 27 September.

Saturday, 4 September 2010

Yoga to boost your mood

Fresh scientific proof (as if we need it!) that yoga helps fight depression and makes you happier. Here's the article from The Telegraph.

But note what the end of the article says about the lack of an aerobic element in yoga - even the vigorous varieties. So, add to your yoga practice some regular cardiovascular exercise to get your heart rate up - after all, that's a very important muscle to stretch!

For me, swimming and running work a treat as I find them both monotonous enough to help switch my mind off and bring me into a more meditative state.

Next time you are out power walking, cross-training, running or swimming, add a meditative element to the exercise by quietly in your head repeating the mantra So Ham, which can be translated as 'I am that, I am' - that referring to the Universe, or God, or whatever you choose to believe in.

Repeat 'So' on each inhalation and 'Ham' on each exhalation.

Let me know how you get on!

Adele's Teaching Timetable

07.15-08.15 Vinyasa Flow Yoga* 
Frame Shoreditch, Shoreditch

18.30-19.30 Hatha Yoga

20.30-21.30 Mat-based Pilates*
One Life Studio, Stoke Newington

07.15-08.15 Vinyasa Flow Yoga*
Frame Shoreditch, Shoreditch

* No membership required

For enquiries about private lessons or classes in your place of work, please email

Though for the day - The Moment

Each moment is an individual moment.
So, instead of measuring one moment against another,
just savour this moment.

Sunday, 29 August 2010

Outdoor yoga in Highbury Fields - Sunday 5 September

REMINDER: The Yoga & Picnic in the Park event is this coming Sunday, 5 September, at 2.30pm!

For full details and to register, visit North London Yoga Meetup Group or go through Facebook.

I doubt there'll be a sudden surge in temperature so expect a 75 min fluid vinyasa class with lots of sun salutations to keep us warm. And please remember to wear plenty of layers that you can take off or put on as needed.

See you in the park!

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Yogamatters clearance sale - pick up a half price yoga mat towel!

I love a good bargain!

How convenient then that one of my fav yoga shops, Yogamatters, is having one of their clearance sales.

What particularly caught my eye this time is the half price yoga mat towel, which acts as a hygienic layer between you and a public mat and is easily portable since you can fold it up. I must mention though that I've found it works best for those who sweat a bit from hands and feet as it gives better grip. It's also important not to wash the mat with fabric conditioner or it will become slippery. In fact, the more you wash it, the stickier it will become!

Now, if you're not the type who likes to shop online, I warmly recommend a visit to the Yogamatters warehouse shop, which is within walking distance of Turnpike Lane tube station.

Firstly you'll save on paying the postage, but more importantly, the staff are always really helpful and will answer any questions you may have without hanging over your shoulder. This is why I've been a loyal customer for years.

The sale ends at midnight 31 August.

Monday, 16 August 2010

North London Yoga Meetup Group - a yoga social

We all go to yoga class with our own idea of what kind of experience we wish to have. For some it's that precious quiet time of the day where you don't need to talk to anybody and where nobody is demanding answers from you. Others see it not only as a practice but also as a social opportunity where they can catch up with friends.

I teach in a lot of different settings and locations in London and I always find it interesting to observe how the vibe before and after class differs from place to place (and of course depending on time of the day). In some sessions there is complete silence, everybody in their own space, doing their own thing. In other classes there is a happy and energetic chatter that I always feel a bit bad about silencing when I'm about to begin the class.

My friend Denyse enjoys the social aspects and she's started the North London Yoga Meetup Group as a way of getting people together who are interested in yoga. Follow the link above and she'll explain the set-up herself. You can also get involved on Facebook or Twitter.

My involvement will be teaching a 75 min yoga class once a month in a North London location.

Denyse also plans to invite people to lecture on different yoga related subjects and she's even arranging a cinema outing to see Eat Pray Love, which is out 24 September.

The whole thing will kick off with Yoga & Picnic in Highbury Fields on Sunday 5 September. I am so excited about teaching outdoors - just imagine, the sky is literally the limit!

As long as it doesn't rain we'll be just fine. Although there is a Swedish expression that says: 'There's no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing.' So layer up if it's nippy!

I'll post about this again nearer the time, just wanted you to know so you can pencil it in your diaries.

See you in the park!

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Yoga DVD - Yin & Yang Yoga with Simon Low

Had a stressful day? Exhausted after a demanding week?

I find the 60 min yin sequence on Simon Low's Yin & Yang Yoga DVD is just the ticket to winding down physically and to calming the mind.

The yin postures are inspired by Taoist yoga and you hold them for several minutes to open your joints, massage the connective tissues and stimulate the energy channels.

Simon uses quite a lot of equipment like bolsters, bricks, blocks and eye bags. But if you don't want to buy these things, I suggest you become inventive with what you've got around the house.

When I teach private clients at their home, I find sofa cushions, pillows, blankets and even books become very useful aids!

Get inventive and let me know how you got along!

Yoga in Sydney at Andrew Boy Charlton Pool

Living in London, Australia may be a bit too far to travel for a yoga class. But if you ever do find yourself flying in to Sydney and no doubt struggling with that dreadful jetlag, you have got to take a class at the yoga place next to Andrew Boy Charlton Pool. I promise, it will sort you right out!

The Yoga BC studio, just like the pool, is situated inside the Royal Botanic Gardens, overlooking beautiful Woolloomooloo Bay. So not only do you get to enjoy a green and luscious walk to class, you can also take the opportunity to do some bat-spotting (!) since many of the trees are inhabited by flying-foxes, otherwise known as fruit bats.

I was there in October 2008 and took a 100 min class with Waran Karl, who had a gentle, helpful and knowledgeable approach. Time flew as I slowly untangled my battered post-flight body. At the end of it I felt like I had truly landed. And for final relaxation, get this, he played a soothing piece on the recorder! Bliss!

Classes at Yoga BC conveniently work on a drop-in system, but I'd check with an up-to-date timetable online to avoid any disappointment.

If anybody makes it Down Under, let me know what you thought!

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Yoga teacher lookalikes...

I just got home from a Sivananda class taught by a guy who looks like a clone of Simon Pegg!

So I was trying to get through pranayama - kapalabhati and anuloma viloma with kumbhaka (breath retention) - while this was playing in my head:

Jokes aside, it was a lovely class at LightYogaSpace on De Beauvoir Road, N1. The studio isn't huge but airy enough for everyone to have their own space.

The teacher was Peter and he is Danish so speaks with that lovely Scandinavian twang. He was just superb at adjustments and helped me (safely) go deeper into several asana.

Unfortunately the studio is closing for a few weeks in August, so if you are going to any class there, please check the website to be sure the session is on before you head out.

Now, I have to ask...has anybody ever gone to a class and the teacher looked like someone famous? Also, what is the silliest/grossest/oddest thing that has ever distracted you in yoga class? Cos let's be honest, we all get distracted sometimes!

Monday, 26 July 2010

Beautiful beginnings

'All glory comes from daring to begin.'
Eugene F Ware

After mulling over ideas in my head for months, I have finally got my act together to start my little blog community project. Yay! It has been on my to-do list for ages, but the gorgeous weather has been luring me outdoors and away from the laptop. Today it's raining. Hooray!

Ok, but what's the point of all this then? you ask.

Apart from littering cyber space with yet another blog? Well, students ask me things all the time...Where else do you teach? Can you recommend a yoga holiday? Where can I buy a cheap yoga mat? Do you know of any good pilates DVDs? Is it ok to practice yoga drunk? (someone actually did ask me this once)

So I felt I needed to create a space where I can share knowledge with you and, more importantly, where you can share with me as well as each other!

Expect blog posts about great classes in London (including where and when you can find me teaching) as well as around the world, interesting yoga and pilates articles, DVD/book/website recommendations and much much more.

In return, I expect you lot to be opinionated and willing to comment and discuss.

I would like to emphasise that my opinions are just that, subjective views, so please don't kill me if my recommendations of something or someone don't live up to your expectations.

I'd also like to clarify that nobody is paying me to say stuff. I will big things up because I genuinely believe in them and think they're worth your while.

There, that's my first post done. Does feel pretty glorious!

See you on or off the mat!