Slow down, relax, turn inward in this Aura Bliss Autumn Wellbeing Workshop
Drawing from ancient Indian, Chinese and Taoist philosophies, join us for a deeply nourishing workshop to guide you through autumn and prepare you for the early winter months. With breath practice led by Davel Patel, yin yoga guided by Kanwal Ahluwalia and a delicious light vegan supper by Lara Cooks.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, autumn is the season of dryness, contraction and moving inward. It corresponds to the lungs and large intestine and the metal element. Just as the leaves fall from the trees to decompose and add fertility to the soil, it is a time to deepen our introspection. The colder, drier air makes our lungs more susceptible to respiratory issues whilst our large intestines are physically and emotionally associated with letting go of what no longer serves us. Many of us feel a sense of grief and nostalgia as the season shifts.
It is the ideal opportunity to reflect, observe and move with an awareness to create the space for transition, mindful movement and growth.
Breath and breathing
Our nasal passages become narrower when we breathe in cooler, dry air so preparing yourself for the early winter months using the power of the breath is going to be vitally important. Nasal breathing warms and filters the cold, external air before it reaches the lungs, helping your respiratory system to optimise the uptake of oxygen into the entire body in smooth, slower motion.
You’ll draw on several ancient and adapted practices to tap into and harmonise energy through breathing. Pranayama (vital force, controlled regulation in Sanskrit), diaphragmatic breathing to bring air to the lowest and largest part of the lungs and coherent breathing to balance and align the nervous system. Learn how to open and balance the vortices of energy within your body (‘chakra’ in Sanskrit) to heighten your consciousness for winter while you breathe in a rested state.
Based on ancient Chinese and Taoist philosophies, yin yoga is a simple, quiet but powerful practice. Experience this grounding and calming practice which has profound physical, energetic and emotional effects. Despite its relaxed appearance, yin yoga is physically and mentally challenging, but in a very supportive way. While ‘yang’ yoga works on your muscles, ‘yin’ yoga focuses on your fascia - your deep connective tissues. During seated or supine postures, practised for several minutes, you will be able to increasingly turn inward and observe the responses of your mind and body, finding ways to breathe through the discomfort and to sit with your thoughts more easily. Physically, you will nourish tissues in the body, easing tightness and tension. You will target meridians (energy channels) in the body, opening up blockages and allowing Qi or our life force to flow more easily. We will focus on the Lung and Large Intestine meridians to help provide nourishment and balance for this time of the year.
Nourishing vegan food
Following the breathwork and yin, it will be time to put some fuel back into your body. The menu will be vegan and Yin inspired to warm and nourish the lungs and large intestine. It will be introduced with a simple explanation of the Yin philosophy of food. Join us to share a relaxed meal in the Bhuti cafe after the workshop (it will also be possible to take the food away with you).
Davel Patel / Aura Breath
Davel is a spirited breathologist. She is passionate about the power and the wisdom of the breath. Her approach is unique and bespoke to her clients and designed to integrate different specialisms. She is certified in a range of breath disciplines including coherent and integrated breath; her own pranayama practice began in 2011. Davel is a trauma informed coach and due to complete her training with Joanna Harper on Integrative Eye Movement Therapy (IEMT). She’s a wannabe neuroscience geek who draws on healing energy to enable clients to sustain positive changes beyond the immediate ‘feel-good’ effects of personalised sessions. If you’re keen to tap into the root cause of an imbalance in your life but you’re not sure how to start or maintain habits that work in your favour, contact Davel. She will support you to tap into your own wisdom, to live with joy and love while letting go of doubt, despair and suffering.
Kanwal Ahluwalia / Yogabliss
Kanwal’s teaching style is characterised by warmth, intuition and clear communication. Her classes are engaging and inclusive, helping practitioners with an emphasis on deep stretches, alignment and mindful breathing. She encourages students to go beyond the physical postures of yoga and to delve into the philosophy that underlies it. Kanwal has been practising yoga for over 20 years and teaching since 2010. She was drawn to yoga as a way of keeping a centre of gravity whilst doing a robust job working on women's rights and social justice. Sensing that there was more to yoga than simply ‘keeping fit’ she was drawn to the connection between the mind, body and spirit and trained with Yogahaven (200hrs, Independent Yoga Network) and recently with Norman Blair (Advanced Yoga Teacher 40 hrs, Yoga Alliance). She currently teaches hatha and yin yoga in South London.
Lara Woolston / Lara Cooks
Lara is a classically trained chef who understands the expectations and disciplines of tradition, but loves to break boundaries and barriers. She loves food and people, and the experiences, stories, and memories that every person can tell when they talk about their food-life. As a collector of flavours and ideas Lara takes inspiration from many places. She wants to listen to you talk of your best and worst food, and then she wants to make something inspired by this that you will love to eat. Eating is fundamental to your life and critical to your ability to live a healthy life, with energy, pleasure and flavour! Making food for you at the close of this workshop will be a privilege and an introduction to nourishment with a philosophy that many will not yet have discovered. The meal will be accompanied by an explanation of how the ingredients and combinations align with your breath work and Yin Yoga.
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