Jade's Life has folllowed my transformation from a Melbourne model and party girl to a health and fitness ambassador and writer living in Sydney. Life is full of different paths, embrace new opportunities and never give up on your dreams.
I am a devout
yogi, but I'll admit that I was nervous going into my first few classes.
I wasn’t very
flexible, I was worried that in that room full of gorgeous, stretchy people I wouldn't fit in or know any poses.This fear of new exercise comes from the first time I tried an aerobics
class at a big gym years ago. It was fast, upbeat and everybody else seemed to know
each other and had the moves down pat. I couldn’t keep up, hated jumping around
like a drunk cheerleader so I quickly bailed and vowed never to return.I’m sure I’m not the only one who has been
scared off group fitness like that!
dreading a similar feeling of un-coordination and exclusion for my first yoga
class. How thankful I was to be wrong! Everybody was smiling and relaxed as I
entered the room, the instructor told me a good spot to put my mat so I could
follow the others in the class. There were women and men of all shapes, ages
and fitness levels and an atmosphere of quiet peacefulness. I felt comfortable
right away and even surprised myself by managing to do some more advanced
postures (the instructor usually gives several variations to cater to all
levels.) I left feeling relaxed and happy, but I’d still had a good workout as
I could feel that familiar burn in my muscles.
That was several years ago and I now practice
several different styles of yoga and have really reaped the
benefits. So many positive aspects of yoga have spilled over into my life and
it’s truly such a rewarding practice. You not only condition your body but you
learn so much about yourself too.
Yoga has been
around for thousands of years, in some form or another.For centuries monks have been using it as a
physical preparation for meditation. Yoga shares characteristics of the ancient
practices of Hinduism and Buddhism in their earliest forms.Rishis or dedicated
Vedic Yogis used physical postures and meditation to teach their people how to
live in divine harmony.
Yoga was introduced to the West in the
early 19th Century. Yoga Guru Swami Sivananda was one of the
founding gurus to bring yoga to Europe and America. He developed the Five
Principles of Yoga which are still at the heart of most modern yoga styles.
or proper relaxation;
or proper breathing;
positive thinking and Meditation
develops strength and flexibility, while soothing your nerves and calming your
affect the whole body, muscles and joints, skin and internal organs as well as
improving your overall fitness.
when you allow your body to completely relax and absorb the benefits of the
practice. It's great for your mind as it releases any stress and
allows you to just be in the moment.
breathing is good for the lungs and respiratory system and can be used in
everyday life to assist during other exercise, meditation or as a relaxation
Because of its
origins, yoga can be a very spiritual practice and most styles have an element
of meditation. This doesn’t suddenly make you a zoned out hippie- it can just
be sitting quietly and thinking positive thoughts for a few moments!
When we feel
good after yoga practice we are more likely to make good decisions when it comes
to the rest of our lifestyle. I can guarantee that after a class you will be
more likely to crave fresh, healthy food or a green tea rather than a bag of
chips or greasy meal! Being mindful in the practice of yoga makes you more
mindful about your body overall, and what you are using to fuel it!
different experiences with yoga, some are drawn to the fitness and weight loss
benefits so prefer styles such as Vinasya Flow, Aerial Yoga and Bikram Yoga.
needing to unwind the Hatha and Restore styles are very uplifting and
There are now
lots of modern fusion styles of yoga such as Barre (A mix of Yoga, Pilates and
Ballet) and even Hip Hop yoga!
scared to get started… roll out your mat and find your flow.