Friday, November 14, 2008

Doing yoga & Staying young

Raquel and I have been chatting about students perception towards yoga and the meaning of it. A lot of the issues have been raised since the latest news released about yoga as a religion. Some people think Sun Salutations has gestures in it that seems similar to other forms of religion. The gestures in yoga are called mudras, meaning 'seal' in old indian sanskrit language. The mudras are similar to reflexology which helps to stimulate organs in certain parts of the body.

Anjali Mudra is the most commonly used gesture in yoga (As above with the hands). The gesture seals the energy in the body, inducing a sense of awareness in yourself.

The Sun Salutation Pose, also known as Salute to the Sun and Surya Namaskar, is a flowing series of 12 poses which help improve strength and flexibility of the muscles and spinal column. This pose also warms up the body and tones the abdominal muscles. Virtually, all parts of the body, especially the thoracic and abdominal organs are exercised and rejuvenated with vitality. Traditionally, dawn and dusk are considered the most auspicious times of day to practise yoga, as the rising and setting of the sun both charge the atmosphere with energy. However, if these times are impossible for you, just practise when you can.

If you are interested in what sun salutations look like, then view

Yogic practices stresses on regulation of breathing which helps the yogi to gain control over the life force within the body as well as outside. Synchronisation of the breathing is an important constituent of the practice of Hatha yoga. In Surya Namaskar, the different postures when correctly practised, appear rhythmical, one naturally leading to the other.

There are always going to be ongoing comments about yoga and it's affiliation to religion. The way I look at it is everything is connected to religion. It's as if you would stop doing Tai Chi or Kung Fu just because it was initially practised by the buddhists. Be mindful and be fully aware of what you are practising. If you don't feel comfortable, then fine, stop.

Hatha and Ashtanga yoga are regular performances of combined postures and practices that has been clinically observed by the medical practitioners throughout the world to enhance overall health and both prevent and reverse disease. Yoga is often referred to as "the fountain of youth" because there is clinical evidence that it slows the aging process and promotes long life. Symptoms of aging, such as wrinkles and a poor complexion, are caused by poor circulation of the blood, allowing metabolic waste products or toxins to build up in the system. Through the practice of the yoga asanas, blood circulation is restored and the metabolic waste products are washed out, resulting in a more youthful look and feeling.

Here's a favourite pose of Christy Turlington, 32 year old celeb, looking great, doing Kukutasana.

It must be fate

It must be fate. Peter was planning to take me to the Empire Hotel two nights ago. But plan was void since I didn't finished till late 8.15pm on the Thursday and we didnt' think it would be worth the $300 night stay. I was disappointed but Peter took us to Charcoal for a nice meal.

Our plan for the Friday was just to spend the day together since it's been hectic in the last two weeks for us. Thinking it was going to be a nice relaxing day, my mum knocked on my door (yes, long story, we live as one big happy family in one house...... :0) ) and told me dad was unwell. I didn't have time to even brush my teeth. Yes, lucky me, I had peppermint sweets in my handbag. Took dad to Gleneagles and good ol' Dr Patrick said it was a false alarm. I was so relief. I wasn't prepared to have dad being in hospital again. It was strange to be back in the hospital but I didn't felt I missed anything. Perhaps reminiscing the friends I used to work with. Yeoh, if you are reading this, please be sure to tell Eileen we made the right moves.

Then thinking I was going to have a peaceful lunch, I had more errands to run through. I think I would have burned more than 250 calories running like a lost chicken.

The afternoon went on okay, and Peter decided to take us out to Country Patch after the ordeal of the day I had. I have never been there and am impressed with the setting. Very 'Nosebag' restaurant Oxford like setting. I ordered Ice Cuppuccino (ya, after the day I had, I didn't think twice about the sugars) and Salmon Pasta. Just when I was digging into my food, my handphone rang. It was my sis from UK telling me my mum was taken ill and my dad was on his way to hospital. Okay, you may think me heartless, but I was super hungry and stressed after the call, I shuffed and scoffed 5 scoopfuls of the pasta into my mouth and scurried quickly to my car to meet my parents in A & E.

Mum looked pale and completely 'off'. She felt nauseas with pressure at the back of her left eye. When the nurse took her vital signs, I was already diagnosing my own mum. Mum has been anxious in the last two weeks and the event of the day just set her off. So my guess was anxiety and not having enough rest. Waited in A & E for nearly 2 hours, and then was seen by the doctor. Yes, he too diagnose the same and told my mum to take it easy.

FATE, I didn't go to the Empire Hotel as I won't even have stayed there longer than 9hours. FATE, I used to be a nurse so I didn't feel too panicky about my parents situation (I could be a hysterial woman screaming at nurses and doctors for my mum to be seen first within 5 minutes) . FATE, I married a wonderful husband who understands and supports me . FATE, glad I had a quick dinner before the two hours wait. Hospital food not my 'cup of tea'. FATE, I am a yoga teacher now, all the deep breathing Ujyai breaths really helped big time.