Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Surviving yoga in the studio

Let's just say some parts of this article is funny and some, you'll just have to take it with a pinch of salt.  Click here to read on.

Acupuncture and Moxibustion

Needles.  Don't like needles.  And I know I used to be a nurse handling all sorts of sharps but for some odd reason, I can't bear the thought of them now. Here's the story, I was recently diagnosed with PCOS a few months ago and the meds given to me to help with the syndrome was not effective.  I didn't feel 'balanced' and the side effects were horrible.  So, I thought to myself, what would be the next best thing besides trying pharmaceutical drugs?  Did a little googling on the net and read how acupuncture could help remedy or alleviate the syndromes.  So, off I went to find me a qualified acupunturist in Brunei.  A family relative recommended me to Dr Zhu in Grace Pearl Clinic just next to Cafe De Paris in Gadong.  

I wasn't sure what to expect when I got to the clinic.  My only thoughts were, if he can help, then I don't mind trying alternative therapy.  Dr Zhu did a general assessment and felt I was lacking 'yang' (heat).  He explained how my love of drinking cold drinks and air conditioners 24/7 did not help my condition.  So, he offered acupuncture and chinese herbs to help create more 'yang'.  I took up on his offer, after all, what did I have to lose?  And besides, as a yoga teacher, I believe in holism and I know for sure that acupuncture stimulates 'Qi' (often translated as “vital energy”, qi is the common denominator of all things) and harmonize the energy flow of the body.

What I found interesting was this:-

'Acupuncture is based on ancient Chinese philosophy that sees all sicknesses in the body in terms of an imbalance in the energetic field of the body. This energetic field has been carefully mapped by the Chinese and they have discovered over 400 points that, when stimulated, can effect systemic changes in the body. These points are stimulated by the insertion of very fine, sterile and disposable needles. A combination of these points is carefully selected by the acupuncturist to help activate the body’s innate ability to heal itself and return to a state of balance.

'Scientific research into acupuncture in the last 25 years has brought a general advance in the understanding of neurophysiologic & neuropharmacologic pain relief mechanisms as they relate to acupuncture (the endorphin theory, the gate theory, and DNIC (diffuse noxious inhibitory control) theory). Evidence indicates that acupuncture stimulates the release of brain chemicals such as endorphins that function to relieve pain. Research shows that acupuncture strengthens the immune system, improves circulation, decreases muscle tightness, and increases joint flexibility.'

To be honest, if I said acupuncture doesn't hurt, I be lying to you.  Like I said, I don't like needles, but the insertion of the 'fine' needles doesn't hurt intensely, it just feels like someone pinching you.  And no, I didn't have it all over my body.  The total count of needles I had in me was about ten.  It kinda' felt relaxing after the needles went in.  

The results I would say (over the past few weeks) is pretty good.  I feel 'better'. Then again, it's a matter of time in the next few months if the pcos I have has been alleviated.

But it's definitely worth going through the treatment.  And I would say Dr Zhu is pretty good, he's quite gentle when inserting the needles.  In any case, click here if you're interested to read more on acupuncture and moxibustion.

Dance My Heart Away

The last few weeks has been one that's challenging and yet, a lot of discoveries has been made.  Things I wanted to try but never did, and now, I'm not only trying out dancing classes but am also getting poked at with needles(acupuncture)! In any case,the dance instructors at D'Music Motion(DMM) have been tempting me to dance for awhile back now and it's only through persuasion, I thought I give it a try.  And you know what......it's so cool! It's definitely very different from doing a dance aerobics class.  Learning to do the steps from a dance teacher on a 'one to one' is exciting and at the same time more intriguing.  James and Jhung, both presently dance teachers at DMM are both newly joined dance instructors along with Gilbert, Joel and Alan.  James is teaching me Latin dances while Jhung is teaching me Argentine tango.  I am super psych for the past week and a half learning all this new moves.  I think possibly flexibility from yoga does help with some of the dance movements but more so James and Jhung being excellent teachers.  

Have you ever watched Richard Gere and Jennifer Lopez dancing in the movie 'Shall we dance?'  Or maybe Penelope Cruz and Nicholas Cage in 'Captain Corelli's Mandolin'? Or even Antonia Banderas in 'Take the lead'?  Super cool.  It just makes you want to move your feet when they're dancing in the films. 

Well, I think it's always nice to at least know some 'moves' if you're a lady on the dance floor.  It's never too late to learn.  ;)