A long established yoga class has been run by Rosemary at Liverpool Hope University, Childwall for the past 25 years to which everyone is welcome.
Many teachers and student teachers attend this class along with people who have been practicing yoga for many years, we are therefore able to practice pranayama, mantra and meditation. The format of the sessions mean there is always something for any level of student from beginner to experienced. Everyone is welcome.
Please bring your yoga mat, blocks and belt if you have them, otherwise something that can be placed on the floor like an extra large towel or rug.
Drop in sessions every Tuesday evening from 7.00-9.00. Classes are on-going. Cost: £10.00 per week.
There is a class during half term, hope to see you there.
The Conference Centre
Liverpool Hope University
“Deepening your awareness of your breath is a vital key to unlock the alchemical power of Hatha Yoga. The breath is like a bridge to your inner and outer worlds. When you focus on its flow, your breath will gently, yet powerfully, dissolve any notions of being separate. Awareness of the breath will bring you to rest in a field of profound unity with all that is.
When the body is relaxed and healthy, its various rhythms ….. flow in a synchronous dance within the whole. Inherently linked to these body patterns, the breath rises and falls in response to a pulse of energy that moves through your spine.
… By understanding it, your yoga poses – and ultimately your life – will effortlessly flower from deep within.
This energy wave exists within everyone and everything. It is the pulse of life itself…Yet because we live stressful lives, fueled by habits and choices that perpetuate stress, we hold tension in our body/being. Our breath becomes shallow and tense, and we lack vitality and ease. With age, injury and stress, the wave and our energy flow lessen. We can become rigid in body, mind and spirit, which can be the root cause of illness and distress.” 1
The softest of stuff in the world
Penetrates quickly the hardest.
Insubstantial, it enters
Where no room is.” 2
2. http://www.personaltransformation.com/stephen_cope.html [24.10.17]
“To mind the breath is to make a decision. It may be the most radical decision you have ever made in your life. The second you choose to mind your breath you have decided that this present moment, this very moment, is worthy of your full attention. The instant you do this you have begun to extricate yourself from the hold of the past and the pull of the future. You are living your life as a today rather than a yesterday or a tomorrow.
What does it mean to be mindful and to cultivate mindfulness? It is simply that we notice the thoughts, feelings, and sensations that arise within us from breath to breath. We become aware of our breathing, our body, and our mind. We become aware of our breathing, our body, and our mind, and through this awareness come to peace with ourselves. Mindfulness means doing one thing at a time. We put our full attention on what we are doing, whether that be washing the dishes or driving the car, so we can be awake in that moment. After all, this moment will soon pass, and by being somewhere else we may not have lived it. All of life can pass in this way, each moment stolen by another that has not yet happened.” Page 182 Donna Farhi’s Breathing Book
May each breath be like a footstep bringing you back to the home of yourself.
I have seen
A curious child, who knelt upon a tract
Of inland ground, applying to his ear
The convolutions of a smooth-lipped shell
To which, in silence hushed, his very soul
Listened intensely; and his countenance soon
Brightened with joy; for from within were heard
Murmurings, whereby the monitor expressed
Mysterious union with its native sea.
Even such a shell the universe itself
Is to the ear of Faith; and there are times,
I doubt not, when to you it doth impart
Authentic tidings of invisible things;
Of ebb and flow, and ever-during power;
And central peace, subsisting at the heart
Of endless agitation.
From “The Excursion” by William Wordsworth as cited on page 198 of Donna Farhi’s Breathing Book.
Farhi, Donna, 1996, The Breathing Book, Owl Books
“Breathing is one of the simplest things in the world. We breathe in, we breathe out. When we breathe with real freedom, we neither grasp for or hold onto the breath. No effort is required to pull the breath in or to pus the breath out. Gien the simplicity of breathing one would think it was the easiest thing to do in the wrld. However, if it were truy so easy there would be few unhappy or unhealthy people in the world. To become a welcome vessel for the breath is to ive life without trying to control, grasp, or push away. And how easy is this? The process of breathing is the most accurate metaphor we have for the way that we personally approach life, how we live our lives, and how we react to the inevitable changes that life brings us.”1
"The awareness of breathing and other body sensations is probably the most basic Buddhist meditation exercise. Before you can apply mindfulness successfully to feelings, thoughts, emotions, or the mind, it must be firmly anchored in the awareness of breath and body."
Mark Epstein: Thoughts without the Thinker, Frankfurt am Main: S. Fischer, 2002, p. 153 f. 2
"In the intense practice of mindfulness comes a point from which it proceeds effortlessly and unrestrained, from which experience unfolds continuously with awareness, but without self-consciousness."
Mark Epstein: Thoughts without the Thinker, Frankfurt am Main: S. Fischer, 2002, p. 155 2
"Mindfulness is an attentive observation, an awareness that is totally free of motives or desires, an observation without any interpretation or distortion."
Krishnamurti: The light in you, 1st edition Munich: Econ, 2000, p. 92 2
What do tight hips say about your emotional health? According to Lindsay Simmons, an American yoga teacher and healer, the tightness in hips aren’t just physical she says, “The hips are emotionally charged, a place where we store some of our deepest vulnerabilities.” 1
Louise Hay, author of You Can Heal Your Life, says, hip pain is often telling us that we are holding onto fear. This can be fear of moving into our future or of a change in the direction of our lives. It can be a resistance to change, perhaps regarding work or our living situation or a fear of not finding and fulfilling your life’s purpose.
Louise Hay recommends using affirmations to heal, her recommendations for healing your hips are:2
I release any fear I have stored in my hips!
I release any fear of making major decisions I have stored in my hips!
I release any sense of having nothing to look forward to I have stored in my hips!
I release any feelings of lack of support I have stored in my hips!
I release any feelings of non-acceptance of the present I have stored in my hips!
I release any feelings of non-acceptance of my physical situation I have stored in my hips!
I release any fear of moving forward I have stored in my hips!
I release any anger I have stored in my hips!
I release any fear about letting go of the past I have stored in my hips!
I release any feelings of being unable to stand on my own I have stored in my hips!
I release any resistance I have stored in my hips!
I release any stiffness I have stored in my hips!
I release any fear about my life purpose I have stored in my hips!
I release any financial worries I have stored in my hips!
I release any feelings of being on shaky ground I have stored in my hips!
I release any feelings of being useless I have stored in my hips!
I release any hurt I have stored in my hips!
I release any feelings of being stuck that I have stored in my hips!
I clear all the ways I am holding on too tightly!
I release any conflict I have stored in my hips!
I release the idea that my hips are a problem!
Hay, Louise L. (1996), You can heal your life, Eden Grove Editions
There is little motion and a great deal of stability throughout the upper back (thoracic spine), as a result, it is not usual for this section of the spine to develop typical disorders of the spine such as herniated or slipped discs, or spinal instability.
However, it is a common to feel stress and tension in the region of the spine from just below the shoulder blades up to the neck, and owing to poor postural habits, we do have a tendency to ‘round’ this part of the spine (flexion) and this habit can become fixed in older age. Commonly this might be from working on a computer, bending forwards and down when looking after young children, or gardening it could also come from doing a job that brings our shoulders forwards such as hairdressing. It might also be more prevalent in people who are tall, especially girls that grow tall in their teenage years.
There is one specific disorder that does show itself in the upper back as we age, and that is osteoporosis, this is when the front portion of the spinal disks degenerate (they crumble) thus causing a ‘hump’ in the upper back (hyperkyphosis).
Individual disc movement is very limited in the spine, however, increased motion is possible when several discs combine forces. Our postures today will target this area of the spine. Movement helps to break down the tension we hold here.
There are psychological implications of this postural position, it is often considered that it is a posture that protects the heart as when the upper back rounds, the front of the chest collapses, the shoulders come forward, in a gesture that does indeed provide protection to the heart space. It is also evident in people who are shy and lacking in confidence.
Louise Hay says,
“The upper back has to do with feeling the lack of emotional support.“ (Hay (1996) p128)
Of “Feeling unloved.” Or, “Holding back love.” (Hay (1996) p152)
Aphorisms from Louise Hay are:
“Life itself supports me. I trust the universe. I freely give love and trust.” (Hay (1996) p211)
“I love and approve of myself. Life supports and loves me.” (Hay (1996) p152)
“I relax, knowing that Life supports me at all times.” (Hay 2007, p218)
Hay, L. Louise (1996), You can heal your life, Hay House Ltd
Hay, L. Louise, (2007), Meditations to heal your life, Hay House Ltd
Today we will focus on spaciousness; we will look to create space in our mind and world. Rather than focusing on thoughts that arise, we will focus on the space between the thoughts and see if we can expand that space. As we experience the space, the stillness between thoughts, we become present with awareness; this is a natural, nurturing, healing experience.
Today I went to Prema Yoga. I didn’t search for it and no one told me about it, I just found it, a little bit by accident but what a find! Prema Yoga doesn’t have a great Google page rank. It doesn’t appear in the initial listings when you do a search for ‘yoga and Liverpool’, but it should. ‘Many teachers and student teachers attend this class along with people who have been practicing yoga for many years, therefore it includes the practice pranayama, mantra and meditation. The format of the sessions mean there is always something for any level of student from beginner to experienced. It is a mixed class of males and females’.
I found Prema Yoga in my search term ‘Yoga Liverpool’ and I was impressed by Rosemary's experience and qualifications that I read on the website. I was intrigued by her credentials and curious about the type of class that she would deliver as on the website it simply said ‘Yoga’ class. I was looking forward to meeting her and experiencing the class. I called her up in the morning to check that the class was on as there wasn’t a booking facility online. She was friendly and told me it was a drop in class and to definitely come along. So at 6:30 p.m. I called a cab and arrived at the Conference Centre in Hope Park with time to chill on my mat before we began.
I haven’t been back to Hope since I finished Uni and the gardens have really taken off! Also for anyone who knew Hope before the Liverpool 1 era, the Conference Centre is what used to be the nursery. The yoga class is held in one of the conference rooms. It’s warm and dimly lit with good space for about fifteen to twenty students. The class was full and everyone seemed to know each other and chatted before we began.
Rosemary has a very gentle and reassuring tone of voice and is knowledgeable about the postures. She delivers this knowledge to the class in a manner that is warm and informative. She had set a theme for the class and the postures complemented the theme. The class flowed beautifully. We were often asked how we felt after certain postures and Rosemary also demonstrated modifications of postures that we could choose.
The latter part of the session included pranayamas, (breathing exercises) meditation and an invitation to affirmations. The class closed with a luxurious yoga nidra (body scan). I thoroughly enjoyed the practice of yoga in this style. The class was not rushed and not arduous. Some of the joint freeing series at the beginning of the class made me feel as though I’d had a great massage!
I understand now why the class was just listed as ‘Yoga’, because it was totally just yoga, in all it’s glory! I have to admit that I was so blissed out at the end of the class I thanked Rosemary and gave her a big hug! It was difficult to believe that I had been there practicing for two whole hours! When I left Hope Park and walked out onto Taggart Avenue I was feeling super relaxed and incredibly present. An hour later I arrived home. I’d walked all the way … Maybe yoga should come with a health warning; because it really does makes you feel amazingly alright!
Rachele, co-founder of Eco Liverpool (http://mindfulyogaliverpool.com/page/2/)
The BWY is recognised by Sport England and The Sport and Recreation Alliance (formally the CCPR) as the National Governing Body for Yoga in England. As the NGB for Yoga we also accredit other organisation's teacher training programmes.