A Podcast with Yoga Student Handbook Contributors

L-R: Alison Leighton, Tarik Dervish, Sian O’Neill, Wendy Teasdill, Graham Burns

We recently met with contributors to the new Yoga Student Handbook, including Sian O’Neill, editor of the book and host of the discussion, as well as Tarik Dervish, Alison Leighton, Wendy Teasdill and Graham Burns. In this podcast, they share ideas and tips for the budding yoga student as well as seasoned yogis and yoga professionals.

In their discussion, the contributors touched on the history and philosophy of yoga, where to begin your yoga practice if you’re a beginner yogi, how to develop your home practice and when to consider teacher training. Although they’ve all contributed to the book, some of them have never met in person. This was a great opportunity for them to meet, get to know each other and exchange ideas.

Click below to listen to the discussion.

 

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Robin Rothenberg: Pranayama and Chronic Conditions

 

Robin Rothenberg is an author and internationally respected yoga therapist with a full time practice serving people living with chronic pain and illness. She is director of Essential Yoga Therapy with an IAYT Accredited Therapist Training Program and has been involved in yoga research since 2000.

Her Summit offering is based on her soon to be published text, Restoring Prana: A therapeutic Guide to Pranayama and Healing Through the Breath (Singing Dragon, 2019). Robin will share the knowledge she’s accrued from intensive study in respiratory science, and the original Vedic teachings on pranayama.

CLICK HERE TO JOIN ROBIN’S LIVE WEBINAR NOW


Restoring Prana
A Therapeutic Guide to Pranayama and Healing Through the Breath for Yoga Therapists, Yoga Teachers and Healthcare Practitioners
Robin Rothenberg

Grounded in the yogic teachings, this text introduces the Buteyko breathing method as a more contemporary way of understanding the original intention of pranayama. Through extensive research, Robin Rothenberg establishes that as with Dr. Buteyko’s breath retraining technique, the ancient yogis prescribed breathing less not more. Read more

How to maintain your root centre – by Rosemary Patten

Rosemary Patten, author of Japanese Holistic Face Massage and founder of Equinox Rose, a clinic specialising in energy healing, offers tips and meditation exercises to fix your prana from tip to toe by focusing on your root centre.

Patten - chakra image for blog pieceWhy is maintaining the root centre important?

The root centre brings the flow of energy from crown to root and back from root to crown again. Without this instinctual energy the human race would not be here and we would not be able to understand the link we have with spirit. The root centre has given us the opportunity to progress. The rhythm of life is an ebb and flow of ideas and the willingness to confidently embrace the new with the knowledge that we can achieve and we can let go.

 

How does a balanced root centre make us feel?

  • We make decisions that are intuitive
  • We enjoy other’s company without fear at expressing our true feelings
  • We respect ourselves
  • We feel no envy or no greed for possessions
  • We relish other’s success
  • We can face people without judgement
  • We can achieve
  • We can help and inspire others
  • We listen to our bodies
  • We are aware of our sexuality and are not ashamed of our bodies

 

What can an imbalance of the root centre lead to?

  • Feelings of inadequacy
  • Being weak physically or emotionally
  • Blocking out the past unable to accept and move on
  • Being afraid of our own judgement
  • Restlessness and over talking
  • Running away from any kind of confrontation
  • A lack of co-operation by not allowing anyone to have their say
  • In relationships, aspirations can be too high with a tendency to criticise
  • A tendency to be over competitive
  • Losing the ability to be happy for other’s success

 

How can we maintain a healthy root centre?

  • Get out into the air and with each step realise the earth beneath and feel it!
  • Find activities your body will thank you for; walking in the fresh air, physical exercise, competitive sports, even gardening will help you to connect to your body and the earth
  • Recognise the early signs that tell you when your body is not balanced
  • Eat foods that are natural not processed. Meat and proteins when your mind is racing will help to keep the energy within the lower energy centres. However, overeating meat can cause you to be sluggish, therefore consider also soy tofu, pulses, nuts and dairy

 

An exercise to keep you feeling connected

Remember this simple exercise when you are busy and life gets fraught and you feel overwhelmed:

Sit upright in your chair and imagine a cord that runs down your spine into mother earth. When it reaches the level of the trees it forms roots. These roots intermingle with the trees and keep you connected to the earth. Bring the energy up through your cord.

Meditation 1

(Follow the above connection exercise)… Imagine all your worries, all those little things that annoy or niggles you… And then send those worries, excessive thoughts, down the cord and dispersing into the roots or fibre… Imagine yourself as strong as an oak tree…. Noble… Powerful…

 

Meditation 2

Sit in a comfortable position and put your hand comfortably on your lap.

a) Connect to the breath, breathe evenly and do not force the breath…  Connect to the rhythm of the breath; remember to sit upright to allow the energy to pass up and down your spine. Release any tension you feel within your body.  Scan your body with your mind’s eye.  Are you holding any tension in your head?… Around the temples? Relax… Breathe into the tension and dissipate any tension. Scan your body, head, neck, shoulders, chest, upper back, lower back.  Release by breathing into the area… Feel relaxed but upright.

b) Breathe down and place your root into the soil of mother earth… Remember to breathe not hold the breath too long…

c) Imagine a beam of white light some distance above and to one side of you and draw this light down your spine…

Hold the light at your root centre and visualise it turning a bright red colour.  Feeling the red light within the perineum area…

Feel it grow… Feel strong… Powerful… Passionate and feel courage… Courage to achieve…

You have boundless energy…

You are connected with your root…

You understand the needs of your body and you give thanks

 

Meditation 3

(Follow the above connection exercise)

a) Feel your body expand and contract as you breath… Feel your legs, your feet… And the floor beneath you… Really be aware of the contact of your body to the chair… How solid, gravity keeps you there…

Bring your awareness to your feet and slightly increase the pressure to the floor without bringing tension into your legs… Grounding your body…Feel the current running down your legs… Continue to feel your body grounding…

b) Tune into your body… Feel the centre of gravity at the base of your spine… Focus on this point… As you focus on this point of gravity… Start to be aware of rest of your body… Think of the central channel your spine… Align the energy… Keep your back straight… Bring the energy over this central area…Your torso to your head, throat, chest, stomach, all over the central core of gravity… Keep breathing as you settle into the alignment…Imagine the cord running from the centre of your head down the central core… Deep into the earth… Try to imagine this core a deep red…

Take your time to feel all the energy centres aligning one over the other… Pulling you down into the earth… Anchoring your physical body with the subtle bodies…

c) Allow yourself to sway from the central core of gravity back and forth… Around from that central point… Feel the central point of gravity weighing you down… Holding you… As you move feel the tension lift… Draining away while your feet are pressing gently to the floor. Remember to breathe…

Now just relax into your chair for a few moments before you open your eyes.

 

Rosemary Patten is a master Reiki practitioner, aromatherapist, reflexologist, and author of Japanese Holistic Face Massage. She lives in Kent, UK.

Early therapeutic uses of light and colour – extract from Colour Healing Manual

Wills_Colour-Healing_978-1-84819-165-5_colourjpg-web

Taken from Pauline Wills’ Colour Healing Manual, in this extract the author discusses how colour, light and healing have traditionally been linked across a range of ancient civilizations – and what these can mean for today’s uses of colour therapy.

Click here to read the extract

Pauline Wills is a qualified yoga instructor, reflexologist and colour practitioner and pioneered the integration of colour with reflexology. Her first introduction to the healing power of colour was through yoga and then through the Maitreya School of Colour Healing. She is the co-founder of The Oracle School of Colour in London, where she teaches and practises colour therapy and reflexology. She has written numerous books on complementary therapies.

© 2013 Singing Dragon blog. All Rights Reserved

Japanese Holistic Face Massage – More than a facial, by Rosemary Patten

Patten, RosemaryThe face reflects who we are, reflects our personality, state of health and our spiritual balance. We pick up a lot of information about a person just by looking at their face. To the ancient Japanese and Chinese, a beautiful face was the ultimate prize as it was a reflection of optimum health and of course with good health comes a long life. Longevity achieved through preventing ill health was, and still is, the aim of traditional Chinese medicine.

Japanese face massage became popular in the Far East during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, especially among the Geisha, for its health-giving benefits and its ability to reflect inner calm on their porcelain-like faces. Not much was known of this unique massage in the West until after the Second World War but today it is practised all over the world.

Many facial routines focus on cleansing and may include a basic massage designed to relax the recipient. The Japanese face massage is much more than a massage or facial. From the very beginning of the routine, the recipient experiences a glorious sense of release within the first two movements as the flowing but firm touch sets the scene for an experience of peaceful tranquillity and healing. There is a feeling of liberation as the neck and shoulders are massaged, lifting tension and allowing calm to descend. These opening movements pave the way for the deep healing experience you get from the Japanese face massage.

Unlike basic facial routines, the techniques in Japanese face massage focus deeper to achieve more than a cleanse, tone and moisturise. Acupressure points around the face and head are gently manipulated and the meridians are traced to access the body’s bio-energetic flow to bring balance.

Patten_Japanese-Holist_978-1-84819-122-8_colourjpg-webThe massage pushes oxygenated blood and nutrients to penetrate the deep layers of the skin to nourish and renew cells. The gentle flowing effleurage movements are not only relaxing but also encourage the release of cellular matter and the removal of de-oxygenated blood via the lymphatic system. The effect is instantly visible as circulation to the face is improved, bringing a lustre to the skin which manifests as an inner glow of calm and vitality. Fine lines are diminished and the contours of the face become more defined, especially noticeable around the eye area.

All bio-energy pathways or meridians either start or finish in the face. As the acupressure points are accessed there is a deep sense of comfort and nurturing. Additionally, the sequence of the movements and the tracing of the pathways or meridians encourages Ki (universal life force energy) to flow where it is most needed. Ki energy is responsible for correctly functioning bodily fluids and the smooth running of body organs such as the kidneys and the liver.

There has been a myriad of research on the effects of stimulating the acupressure points over the past fifty years as Western scientists slowly realise what Eastern medicine has known for over 4,000 years. Acupressure points on the face react instantly to touch, releasing endorphins and bypassing the central nervous system due to the close proximity to the brain. There is a prevailing sense of well-being when the hormones are stimulated. The autonomic nervous system is calmed and peace descends as healing on all levels takes place. The Japanese face massage is truly holistic as it not only improves the appearance of the face but also helps the body function better. A truly wonderful combination of benefits that leaves the recipient feeling mentally and emotionally revived.

 

Rosemary Patten is a naturally gifted holistic therapist with over 23 years’ experience in helping people feel better. She began her professional career within the NHS, in hospital settings, where her extensive contact with those in rehabilitation gave her an invaluable grounding in understanding the nature of disease. A master Reiki practitioner, aromatherapist, reflexologist, qualified beautician and in many other holistic therapies, Rosemary founded Rose Health and Well Being Natural Health Centre, which has now evolved into Equinox Rose. This is a combined holistic services consultancy delivering various natural therapy workshops, consultations on business development for therapists and a clinic specialising in energetic healing. Japanese Holistic Face Massage is among the range of therapies Rosemary uses to help her many clients make a breakthrough physically or emotionally. Rosemary believes passionately in a holistic approach to diagnosing root causes of illness, especially the impact of stagnant energetic flow within and around the body. She lives in Kent, UK.


© 2013 Singing Dragon blog. All Rights Reserved

 

Singing Dragon Wins Gold at the 2011 Living Now Book Awards

We are pleased to announce that four Singing Dragon books have won prizes at the 2011 Living Now Book Awards, including two first place Gold prizes!

Singing Dragon received the Gold prize in the Enlightenment/Spirituality category for The 12 Chinese Animals: Create Harmony in your Daily Life through Ancient Chinese Wisdom by Master Zhongxian Wu.

Singing Dragon also received the Gold prize in the Yoga/Pilates/Bodywork category for Yoga Therapy for Every Special Child by Nancy Williams.

And in the Exercise/Fitness category, Singing Dragon scooped two prizes: the Silver for Vital Healing: Energy, Mind and Spirit in Traditional Medicines of India, Tibet & the Middle East – Middle Asia, by Dr Marc S. Micozzi, and the Bronze for Managing Stress with Qigong by Gordon Faulkner.

The Living Now Book Awards celebrate the innovation and creativity of new books that enhance the quality of our lives, from cooking and fitness to relationships and mature living. Visit www.livingnowawards.com for more info.

Congratulations to the authors, contributors, editors and everyone who worked on the winning books! Click below to learn more about each one.

Copyright © Singing Dragon 2011.