Practicing Seasonal Yoga – what it’s about and its benefits
Seasonal Yoga is designed to “align the changing energies of nature and the seasons in a practice that improves physical strength and flexibility, giving balance, harmony and an enhanced sense of well-being”. It was created by teachers Julie Hanson and Sue Woodd in 1995, as an antidote to the stress and anxiety of modern life.
Seasonal yoga combines Yoga with elements of the traditional practices of T’ai Chi and Qigong forms. Each season is related to an element in nature which has corresponding yin and yang organs in the body. The practice works with the organs’ energy lines (nadis/meridians) bringing about a sense of balance and a harmony with nature’s seasons.
The organs associated with each season
The way we feel and how we move evolves with the seasons. The style and focus of classes change week by week, month by month helping to maintain focus, promoting and maintaining good health of mind and body.
Summer is the season of maximum Yang and the Fire element, running from end June until end August. It is a time of high energy and living life to the full. We feel invigorated and robust, soaking up the energy from the sun. It is the season where we feel connected, joyful, energetic, spontaneous, enjoying being with others, being outdoors and feeling free. It is often easy to experience over excitement and do too much in this season!
The emotions associated with each season
The organs associated with the summer are our small intestine (yang) and heart (yin). Each organ has associated emotions which can feel out of balance at times. Seasonal yoga practice can help to bring these back into balance. The organs work together as a pair; to nourish the body and mind.
A healthy heart is one that is tranquil and calm. It can help us decide when and how we choose to work or rest, helping us to avoid burnout.
Our practice includes sun salutations to increase the heart rate, improve circulation and energise the body. It’s the season for Dolphin Dips and Vinyasa flushes. These are balanced with cooling postures to close the practice.
As well as our yoga practice, daily meditation and daily cardiovascular exercise, our eating habits can be adapted to suit the season:
· Eating lighter foods that contain plenty of energy
· Eating foods as close to their natural state as possible
· Avoiding processed or pre-prepared meals
· Eating little and often
· Plenty of water to hydrate the body and the skin.
Our Summer Seasonal Workshop on 4 July 5-7pm will stimulate our heart and circulation, build heat in the body and bring you joy and laughter! We’ll be closing the practice with a seasonal Yoga Nidra offering an opportunity for deep relaxation and restoration, balancing our energies for the seasons.
Look forward to you joining us!
Seasonal Yoga: A fusion of Yoga and Tai Chi combined with lifestyle tips for every season (Julie Hanson & Sue Woodd)
Qigong and the Tai Chi Axis: Nourishing Practices for Body, Mind and Spirit (Mimi Kuo-Deemer) https://seasonal.yoga/summer-2019/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RdUmD1Kp798
Your Body’s Many Cries for Water (Fereydoon Batmanghelidj)
Author: Debs Grossman is teaching a Summer Flow workshop for Heather Yoga on Saturday 4th July 5-7pm. For more info and to book please click here. Debs also teaches a regular Seasonal Flow class every Wednesday at 5.15pm and a Seasonal Yin class every Friday at 7.45pm. Please book through our timetable page