Saturday, 23 September 2017

Benefits of Sarvangasana - Shoulder Stand

So my latest youtube video is exploring Sarvangasana, over the next couple of weeks i will be exploring a variety of different inverted postures. 

Any inverted posture we do in yoga is reversing the action of gravity, normally gravity is pulling us down from our feet but inverting shifts this pull from the head instead. 

It is suggested that by inverting it not only effects the body but also the emotional and psychic levels, encouraging a new way of seeing old ways and patterns we may be stuck in. 
Inverted postures can help to reduce anxiety, stress and general well-being as-well as helping to increase our confidence. 

When we move into an inverted asana we are moving the blood supply to the brain which will nourish the neurones and remove toxins. 

"Blood and lymph, accumulated in the lower limbs and abdominal, are drained back to the heart, then circulated to the lungs, purified and re-circulated to all parts of the body.' - HYP

If you are new to doing inverted asanas you should only remain in them a few seconds and build on this over time. There are a contra-indications in doing this asana that i list below, it is advised you don't perform the asana if these are true.

  • High Blood Pressure
  • Slipped disc
  • Back conditions
  • Illness that results in impure blood (until pure again)
  • Enlarged Thyroid, liver or spleen
  • Cervical Spondylitis
  • Heart problems
  • Weak blood vessels in the eyes
  • Pregnancy
So now we have got that part out of the way, lets explore the wonderful benefits that are received from doing this posture.

  • Stimulates Thyroid Gland
  • Balances Circulatory, digestive, reproductive, nervous and endocrine systems
  • Enriches blood flow to brain
  • relieves emotion and mental stress
  • relives fear and head aches
  • helps clear psychological disturbances
  • Increase the exchange of oxygen in the body
  • Relieved haemorrhoids 
  • Tones the legs, abdominal and reproductive organs
  • drains stagnant blood
  • Increases flexibility of the neck 
  • Revitalising for the eyes, ears and tonsils
  • Helps to prevent illness of the throat and nose

Now if that isn't enough of a reason to practice this asana then i don't know what it. I have broke the asana down in the video so you can go at your own pace. You can place a blanket underneath the shoulders if that relieves any neck discomfort. It depends on your bone structure at this time. 

Shoulder stand is a posture that is used in many yoga therapy treatments because of all the wonderful benefits. If you are limited to taking the pressure on to your shoulders then just having the legs up the wall will give you a huge amount of nourishment.  

Enjoy practicing - Namaste 

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Benefits of Pregnancy Yoga

As pregnancy yoga becomes increasingly popular in the west, with much research being done on the benefits received to both mother and baby, one being a huge reduction of stress levels. Here i list a few more of what you will be getting from doing a weekly slot of yoga why pregnant.

  • Sleep better
  • Nurturing time for yourself
  • Deeper connection with your baby
  • Improve circulation
  • Increase the strength, flexibility and endurance of muscles and other body areas that are involved in pregnancy and childbirth.
  • Regular sessions can burn calories and keep your body in shape
  • Reduce many common problems during pregnancy like morning sickness, headaches, shortness of breath, carpel tunnel syndrome and back pain
  • Helps to lower stress and anxiety levels
  • React and cope better during childbirth
  • Helping support hips and pelvic issues
  • Relieve tension of the lower back, hips, chest, upper back and shoulderCultivate bonds with other participants, which will create a support group to share your concerns and discuss problems. Considering the journey ahead, some of these bonds could result in lifelong friendships 

"It takes a very special person with thorough understanding of human physiology to be able to lead a group of mother of mixed abilities sensitively in a safe and effective prenatal yoga programme". - Tara Lee

Don't just go to any class - do your research on the teacher. Remember its you and your baby that are giving that teacher your body and mind to work with. It's vital they understand Yoga and the body. Yoga is not just exercises - it is much deeper and wholesome for every aspect of yourself, body, mind and soul. 

Weekly classes 6-7pm Thursday and 11-12pm  Saturday at Lotus Flower Yoga Studio with Katya  Leigh - Wigan,  Contact -

Mandy at Effortless Breath runs Pregnancy Yoga sessions in Warrington - Contact,

Both BWY Teachers 

Saturday, 3 June 2017

My Vegan Journey Begins

Being a yogini my awareness of body, diet and nature has been something that has always took a forefront within my mind. I entered a journey of vegetarianism many years ago, after 6 dedicated years i fell ill and in some way entered me back into the non-vegetarianism ways after being told i needed to eat meat due to iron deficiency. As a yogi/yogini eating meat still didn't rest comfortably within me but as years have gone by milk became my tasty comfort along with honey, eggs and cheese. I have followed what i would have stated as a good clean diet for a yogini.

Around christmas 2016 i had a routine blood check to find my liver was failing, my blood counts got worse and worse and the hospitals had no idea what was happening to my body. My hair began to shed, my skin was so thin and pale, my body got so thin and i developed the most acute awareness of this amazing organ my liver that was resting within my body! I actually remember being on holiday in Iceland and crying because i was scared as i could feel everything within me, sensations, burning, stabbing and the difficulty my body was having to function.

It seems a distant memory but the awareness that I created of my body and organs was a journey i feel greatful i experienced. Transpiring from tests i was diagnosed coeliac and now my diet is extremely strict when it comes to wheat, rye, barley and anything containing gluten. My liver has been healing along with other parts of my body. Something much more than just being coeliac was taking place within my body and liver, i was healing in ways that are unexplainable to the naked eye, a metaphysical explanation is much more reasonable in my opinion.

Being coeliac is one thing but being vegan is a totally different concept with deep seated ethical reasoning. I have to state only a small few of my friends so far are vegan, and i have no intentions of pushing being vegan onto anyone, we all make our own choices, but i do so wish we were more educated about the stuff that goes on behind what we see in a packet.

I guess it was not one thing in-particular that triggered this change to go vegan it was an array of things, killing, rainforest's, illness, cattle farming, my health are among just a few. One thing that has really stuck in my head and i can't shake off is how they will cut the queen bee's wings of to keep her in one place so they can produce more honey. Anyway, it is your place to do the research if it is of interest and when you are ready it will come just as it has to me and others. But this is how i came to this point in my journey, that enters me into a new healthy chapter of life.

One week into this journey and i have to say my plate has been filled with an rainbow of colours. It feels very grounding to be eating so much good stuff. My desire for cheese and milk has been completely disengaged. I am trying a whole new selection of milks in order to fill the milk void, which i thought would be difficult. My cups of organic tea have vanished and i have consumed one coffee with organic gluten free oat milk. I am not a fan of the Soya, for some reason i just can not take to it, so alternatives are being tried.

One week in and i am seeing a change in my skin too. Being coeliac and ill for so long really changed my skin and hair, my hair since being diagnosed and cleaning up my diet has resulted in regrowth that is so curly and thick at the roots. My skin is getting better too - this last week i have so much colour in my face and my eyes are starting to become clearer too. Its early days, but very reassuring to see little changes so quick.

I have decided to do blog posts and youtube vlogs on this journey, I am going to also fill my blogs with tasty new food ideas, new finds and challenges, as well as changes within my body. May be inspire and be inspired as well as creating a place to express with a fruitful appreciation of life. I would love to hear your story too. :-)

I have to share with you a weekly favourite find - which is fully vegan and gluten free 'BOOJA BOOJA' These were demolished very quickly.

You can find regular feeds on Instagram and youtube videos sharing bits also YouTube.

Thanks for stopping by dear earthlings, love, light and health <3

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Full Moon Delight

Its a full moon tonight, 
It shines so bright,
The darkness causing a fright.

Can you hear the night,
The wolfs howling in delight,
Not a bird in sight.

Its a frightful night,
Till you stop and see the light,
Shining with all its might!

-Katya Greer

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Chair Yoga & Benefits

The history of yoga goes back centuries - Read more about Hatha Yoga in my blog 

The sages and gurus of old wanted to understand the meaning to a long life. Why would shrews have a short lived life of three to five years but the tortoise live a 100 years and beyond? Once studied, it became clear that freedom from stress, slow deep breathing, exercises for purification, fresh air and nourishing food were secrets to eternal life.

Chair Yoga is something that is relatively new, created around the 1980's by a lady called Erika Hammersrom. The idea behind doing yoga on a chair is to make it accessible for those who have lack of mobility; they can't sit on a mat, or can't get up and down from the floor.   

Ultimately Chair Yoga can be done by anyone, old, young, pregnant or not. It just opens up the beautiful gifts that yoga has to offer to everyone. Why should one not be able to do yoga because they can not get on to a mat and lie down? It should and is accessible to all in many forms and ways. It can be done for the very first time on a chair, you don't need to have yoga experience before trying it on a chair.  Heres are some amazing benefits that can be received from taking a Chair Yoga session.

10 benefits 
  1. Circulation
  2. Enhances Mobility
  3. Increased brain function
  4. Concentration
  5. Reduces Stress
  6. Better breathing
  7. Weight Control
  8. Increases strength
  9. Releases Tension
  10. Keeps spine supple

Its still important to seek a health care specialist approval before attending a session. Its vital you are given the all clear to do the session. Listening to your own body during the sessions is important as you are there for yourself to increase health and wellbeing not in any way hinder it. Being observant of your breath, your body at all times and knowing when to just give something a miss that is being practiced. The beautiful thing of yoga is "You are on a journey of the self, through the self, to the self" - Bhagavad Gita

"Remember the emphasis on the heart. The mind lives in doubt and the heart lives in trust. When you trust, suddenly you become centered." ~ Osho

Sessions at Lotus Flower Yoga Studio, Leigh, Lancashire WN7 1BY will begin Friday 3rd march, 11am-12pm.  


Monday, 13 February 2017

About Hatha Yoga

Hatha Yoga  -  This style is a beautiful style for both beginners and advanced practitioners. Read my blog on 'What is an advanced yogi' for real insight into what an experienced yoga student is.

Yoga began at the very beginning of human creation when there was an awareness of spiritual potential, this is when techniques were created. It was created and developed over centuries beginning over 10 thousand years ago. 

"Some traditions believe that yoga was a divine gift revealed to ancient sages so that mankind could have the opportunity to realise its divine nature.{...} Techniques were kept secret. They were passed on from teacher or guru to disciple by word of mouth. In this way there was a clear understanding of their meaning and aim. Through personal experience, realised yogis and sages were able to guide sincere aspirants along the correct path, removing confusion, misunderstanding and excessive intellectual contemplation." 

It was in the 4th - 6th centuries A.D that Matsyendranth, Gorakhnatha and other yogis created two practices 'Raja Yoga' and 'Hatha Yoga'. It was believed that before taking meditation the body should be cleaned and purified and this is Hatha Yoga! 

By performing Hatha Yoga we begin to purify the whole body - the stomach nervous system the bodily organs and other systems through out the body. With the practice of Hatha Yoga we create absolute balance of the body, mind and energy. With this balance we can then awaken our fullest potential which is responsible for the evolution of human consciousness. If this is not the aim of the practice the true objective of your whole yoga practice is lost!

Hatha Yoga uses six different ways to clean the body, first comes the Shatkarma's which include, neti, dhauti, kapalbhati and so forth. You will find that in a Hatha Yoga classes you attend most of these will be missed (very difficult to do in a class environment). Following the above will be asanas, these are what you will be mostly familiar with in class, followed then with Pranayama possibly if you get time. 

The asanas are postures either standing or lying that have the aim towards cleaning the inner body. In Hatha Yoga postures tend to be held and experienced. Then you would move onto the next posture. Postures tend to have many modifications which is excessable for all body types. Listening to your body from movement to movement is important as you want it to benefit the cleansing process of your inner body not hinder it. 

It is advised NOT TO eat 2-3 hours before the practice for obvious reasons! Do you really want to be doing a twist with a full stomach of food? Not only will you gain no benefit but it can also incur injury.  

Pranayama (breath work) is to follow the asanas, BUT again this in no way should be forced and great care should be given due to different illnesses and diseases one may have! 

The practice of Hatha Yoga which involves the use of your body creates self-control and self-discipline!

I hope that you can take something from this blog even if it is just an understanding of what is to come when attending a Hatha Yoga class. Remember all teachers have different ways of teaching and different levels of knowledge on subjects; so be open minded to listening and taking what resinates and leaving what doesn't. We are all on a personal journey, all trying our best, in what ever way is our knowing best! 

Be gentle, be greatful and have gratitude for living in such a well developed world with so much information to tap into.  

Namaste beautiful earthlings :) 

Sunday, 8 January 2017

As The Soul Touches The Light

The sun rises high, moving through the sky.
Eyes open wide, a new day has arrived. 

As the light meets the soul, 
Activation is known. 
Body breathing so deeply,
Knowing it will heal so sweetly.

Darkness continually surrendering,
Letting Lightness prevail.

The body transform, 
And the mind taking form,
The soul feels much lightness.
A feeling of being reborn.

Eyes still beautifully closed,
Feeling much more than is known.

Pauses will form,
The universal God knows,
The true limits we hold.
But honestly shall you be told.

There is no limit,
Its all in your mind,
We are boundless and limitless.
-Katya Greer