There are many aspects to yoga but largely it’s about learning how to stay in an uncomfortable place. The concept goes wherever you need it; to your relationship, work, parenting, friendships. This idea of staying present can support every aspect of your life.

Here is what I mean. Imagine yourself standing in a balance pose, like the tree for example, your teetering on one foot, ankles are aching and wobbling. You might say to yourself….’if I shift my weight a little to the left, relax my shoulders away from my ears and lift my chest, I might handle this a bit better. I might breathe better and make this situation a whole lot easier’.

And later when you are in a meeting that is hard to tolerate, you find yourself using the same principles; shifting your posture, becoming aware of your natural breath and the situation becomes a little more bearable.

This is how yoga can change everything but it doesn’t happen overnight. We must return to our mat again and again because it takes time for these principles to be part of who we are.

On the mat is where we practise.

And once we get it, even a little bit of it, life feels a little bit sweeter, more hopeful. But you will lose it if you stop practising. That’s why yoga is called a practise. You stay on the path and keep discovering new scenery.

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Satya Yoga was established in London in 2003 by Zena Kidd-May, who taught yoga to private individuals at her London studio for several years.

I was worried about joining a yoga class as I see myself as a tight, stiff person. I had had bad experiences of classes before that were too fast and not well explained and they had left me feeling I’d ‘failed’. Zena’s classes are completely different – they are calm and mindful and each new pose is well explained. We are given the space to work at our own pace and the time to take something personal from each pose. My body is still pretty tight, but I love the yoga classes and at each lesson appreciate what I am able to do with the right encouragement. Zena creates a very productive and calm atmosphere, where I feel I am free to do what works for me without having to be in competition with others.

Catherine Allen

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