Happy 40th Sharath!


Sun Salutation A Variation


This is not your traditional Sun Salutation A. However, I wanted to demonstrate taking upper body and core strength a bit further. This isn't something I do regularly in my practice, however in future posts I'll be writing about fundamental elements in building strength and fluidity in practice. Really, it all starts with awareness and then it  all grows from there. Practice. Practice. Practice.

David Robson, ONE Day Workshop, Saturday, Oct. 22!!!!


We are so happy to have David Robson back in Stockholm for a one day, jam packed, exhilarating workshop! He brings with him an amazing passion and insight for the practice of Ashtanga yoga. This is not to be missed! Personally, I feel he is one of the most talented and committed teachers of his generation in the world. To have built what he has in the Toronto yoga community is something that is never easy, and is a testament to his sincere vision and energy. However, don't take my word for it, experience for yourself. There will be something to be learned no matter what level in the practice you find yourself in. All levels welcome. 

Saturday, October 22, 2011 at Yogayama

Led Primary 9:00 - 11:00AM
Join David Robson for the Led Primary Series of Ashtanga Yoga following the traditional Sanskrit count. All levels of practitioner are welcome to attend.

The Practice and Philosophy of Vinyasa
12:00 - 2:00PM
In Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, vinyasa means moving/breathing system. More specifically, it also refers to counted movements that are done in our practices. The vinyasa system, when followed correctly, makes the Astanga practice a moving meditations. This workshop will explore the philosophy and practice of vinyasa as it is traditionally taught in Ashtanga Yoga. It's open to all levels.

Arm-Balancing 3:00 - 5:00PM
In the Astanga practice there are many movements that require us to put all of our weight into our hands. Jump-backs, jump-throughs, and the particular vinyasa from certain poses are all moments of arm-balancing. This workshop will teach you the principles of alignment and technique that are common to all arm-balances, and will help you find more ease in the air. This workshop is open to practitioners of all levels.

David Robson lives in Toronto, Canada, with his wife, Stan, his daughter Mercedes, and son Holden. He is the co-owner and director of the Astanga Yoga Centre of Toronto, where he leads one of the world's largest Mysore programs. In 1998, while completing a degree in Comparative Religion, David began a daily yoga practice. He made his first trip to India in 2002, where he initiated studies with his teacher Sharath Jois. Since then, David has returned annually to deepen and enrich his practice and teaching. He is Level-2 Authorized by the Sri K. Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute.




"If you can empty your own boat, crossing the river of the world, no one will oppose you. No one will seek to harm you. He who can free himself from achievement and from pain descends and is lost amid the masses of men. He will flow like Tao, unseen. He will go about like life itself, with no name and no home. Simple is he without destination. To all appearances he is a fool. His steps leave no trace. He has no power. He achieves nothing. He has no reputation. Since he judges no one, no one judges him. Such is the perfect man. His boat is empty."

Now that we are officially into Fall it seems only fitting I came down with a gnarly cold. Usually during times of transition we become more susceptible to illness. Some would call it a natural cleansing. I like to think of it that way. Reminds me, this is a perfect time to do another liver and gallbladder cleanse! When I first started doing the cleanses I did them more frequently as were recommended. Now, I do them at a maintenance level. Which means during the seasonal shift. Biologically our bodies are more apt to purge during the seasonal transitions so supporting it by doing a cleanse is a good way to go.

Autumn has always been a season I've enjoyed. The crisp air somehow feels fresher, cleaner, more vibrant. There's the harvest. There's new beginnings. I become reminiscent. Brings back the excitement of all that came with the kick-off of a new school year. It always felt good to be delving into something new. Now I take the opportunity to tap into what new things I want to create moving forward. Or, what I would like to deepen into. With the incoming darkness, it really seems fitting that it becomes more of an internal excavation. Sometimes it just makes sense to flow with the energy of the seasons instead of against them. However, with that being said, there does seem to be a subtle vitality to the Autumn season. With the Sun sitting a bit lower on the horizon the light is reflected differently. We have the opportunity to see things in a new way.

Happy Vernal Equinox!

Healthy Pride


"I must be a mermaid. I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living."

- Anïs Nin

Being sick. Yeah, a foreign concept to those who practice yoga. Yes, I'm being cheeky. You'll just have to deal with my sarcasm since I'm not feeling well at the moment. Does that give me license? I like to think so. So here I am, after a full day of being in bed. I can't remember the last time I had to lie in bed all day, if ever. I've been forced to contemplate many things while lying here.

I have an interesting history with illness. Well let's see now, I was never really allowed to be sick. I hate to say it but my mother hated when my sister and I were sick. Often I would suppress not feeling well for the sake of not bringing any attention to myself. No coddling. Never! I was one of those kids who had years of perfect attendance at school because I would literally have to be dying not to make it. Except the time I caught some crazy flu where I was so dizzy I couldn't walk straight much less walk to the bus stop. I stayed in for like the first time ever in my childhood.

Truthfully, I was a healthy kid for the most part. I didn't catch nearly half of the nasty bugs that went around when young. Somehow, I never caught the chicken pox either. To this day I am not sure how that happened because my sister contracted it. So I guess you can say I'm lucky or maybe not so lucky if I were to get it as an adult. Yikes!

To tell you the truth I wish I would have had more freedom to feel what I was feeling when it came to illness. To give myself the option to rest and renew. Because of how I was raised it's been a challenge to feel worthy of time to let an illness ride itself out. Then there was a phase where being sick just wasn't an option on any level. Thankfully I've out grown that to some extent.

I've observed an interesting phenomenon being in the yoga community, however. It's almost like the denial of coming down with a cold or a sniffle is common place. When at a party over 3 weeks ago the guest of honor had mentioned how there's a nasty throat virus going around and that his girlfriend was unable to attend. At the time, I had the impression, yeah that's what everyone else gets, not me. From then until now I've seen this virus take a few people out. Especially with a few yoga teachers. When I would make the comment that someone didn't look so good quickly I would be told, oh it's nothing, really. Or another comment was, I never get sick. I haven't had a cold in over three years. One teacher told me this over and over again. I got it the first time, mind you. Interesting this denial that we get sick. Reminds me of when one of my closest friends, who also practices and teaches yoga, almost seemed bitter to have come down with a cold. Her last illness was nearly 5 years ago! So she says. Once again, I was reassured by her, over and over again, this type of thing just doesn't happen. A quick tonic of herbs brewed, drunk down, and it will be as good as gone, I was told. Well, let's just say it didn't really happen that way. The sniffle rode itself out in due time as usual.

Do we have health pride? Because we do yoga and eat organic foods are we somehow above human protocol?

So about a week ago a tickle started to manifest in my throat. Yeah. From what I heard this is how it starts, as an innocent tickle. Not a good sign. I mentioned to a colleague of mine that I thought I was coming down with something which I was quickly told that she never catches anything. Did I ask? Nooooooo. However, yes, I was reminded of the strength and vitality of her immune system, never mind mine.

So I caught this damned throat virus, big deal. It's my time. I'm due. However, through this experience I'm left wondering if some of us have become prideful with the lifestyles we have chosen? If somehow we have risen above a certain apex of human evolution (delusion) because we won't accept anything less, much less being sick. Like somehow we are better people if we don't come down with these common human conditions.

In many ways I have felt relief to finally accept that illness comes and goes and the importance of rest and renewal. It's okay. Not the end of the world. I have had to deal with the guilt of staying home from work. Something that I will always have to deal with because of the circumstances of my upbringing and temperament. You know, we all have our stuff.

As I lay here I realize being able to relate to the human condition seems much more worthwhile than having the illusion of rising above it. In the end resistance is another pattern no matter how we slice it. Relating to all that is around, our differences, our weakness, our strengths gives rise to compassion, that yeah, we're here in these bodies just trying to make sense of it all.

Yoga Gives Back Highlights


I want to thank everyone who participated in our Yoga Gives Back Global Event last Saturday. Also, a big thanks to those who couldn't make the class but donated to the cause! It feels good to come together and practice yoga while giving back to those in need.

What I love about the Yoga Gives Back organization is their passion for helping the women of India build sustainable lives for themselves and their families! This work crosses the bridge of empowerment through generations!

Again, if you would like to learn more, participate in the next event or donate, please visit, www.yogagivesback.org!




"A quiet mind is all you need. All else will happen rightly, once your mind is quiet. As the sun on rising makes the world active, so does self-awareness affect changes in the mind. In the light of calm and steady self-awareness inner energies wake up and work miracles without effort on your part." - Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

Recently, finally, I checked my blog stats and was shocked to learn that my post regarding the Blue Lagoon is the top post of ALL time. Not only that, but it's the most visited post for every single week thus far. So much for my brilliant blogs about yoga! Hahaha, only kidding. Blue Lagoon you ask? Well, it's this magical place in the fascinating country of Iceland. I had the pleasure of teaching yoga there over a year ago and visiting the Blue Lagoon was part of my experience. It seems just mentioning the place peaks the interest of many out in cyber space. It's like, wow! I had no idea it would be such a draw. No less, the main reason for most of the traffic to this site. Sigh. This is really motivating me to get cracking, posting more regularly. This can't continue to be my most popular blog post ever! No. Although, my life isn't too exciting at the moment. Which, to tell you the truth, I'm happy with. I'm loving my routine.

We're already over 6 months in since starting our Mysore program. It's been great, and mostly the reason why I've been absent. I'm working with a tight schedule, especially after teaching for nearly four hours and doing my own practice before hand it's already nearly a full day. When putting in and then giving out, I've had to re-establish a balance for myself.

In the beginning it takes a substantial amount of energy and now things are beginning to take shape in a way that's really astounding. All it takes is commitment. Students want to know you'll be there. A relationship is born. A beautiful give and take and growth begins to take shape. There is no better formula then consistency. When working in this way it still blows me away how amazing this practice is. It works, truly, with the right amount of attention and care. Building slowly. Breath centered.

It's important for me to keep an open dialogue with students as they develop through their practices. I'm the type of teacher who enjoys listening to feedback when practitioners start to gain insights and attune to their bodies and minds. In that, I trust the practice in a way that I don't have to say too much because I know in time it will be there for them. Keeping them on track within the practice has a way of already removing the barriers. I am fascinated by it. I know other forms of yoga rely on an abundance of dialogue which can be beneficial from time to time. However, more often then none, I feel there really isn't anything new, so to speak. The yogis of old knew what needed to be uncovered through experience and the practical methods to take us there. Sometimes I feel we have complicated what is unnecessary to complicate. It's all so clear, is it not? Reveling in the mystery. I realize this being a recent phenomenon, in that yoga has become a billion dollar business globally. This motivates me to continue to peel back the layers and remove the exterior packaging and get down to the root. Namasté.

Yoga Gives Back! September 17th, Join Us!


I'm really frustrated because for some reason I am unable to post videos! What's up Blogger??? I have no idea why. It used to always work. Suggestions? Solutions? 

Anyhow, I was going to post the kick-off video for the Yoga Gives Back global event being held this coming Saturday, September 17th. We're doing our part here in Stockholm, and hosting a donation class from 2:00 - 4:00 pm. Should be fun! What a great way to support the cause! Thank you Mother India!!!! I'm looking forward to continued work with the Yoga Gives Back organization. 

Please join us! 
Saturday, September 17th 2011 @ Yogayama, 2:00 - 4:00 pm
Come dressed to do yoga and bring a cash donation!!! Hope to see you there! Not in Stockholm? You can also find an event near you by visiting www.yogagivesback.org!

London Cityscapes


Yeah, I know, I'm really overdoing it with the London pictures! I took so many! I was feeling inspired or maybe a bit trigger happy, not sure. One thing I appreciated about London were the abundance of pubs with funny names. Hahaha, It doesn't take much to amuse me.

Like Stockholm, London is a coffee mecca. I fell in love with Monmouth in the Borough Market area. Ahhh, so nice, minus the fact I really shouldn't be drinking coffee anyway, haha. Shhh!

 Near Brick Lane

Navigating in London's Underground, otherwise known as the Tube, is like maneuvering in an endless array of tunnels and corridors. Took me a while to grasp it all.  Also, it's hotter than hell down there! This, is coming from someone who is always cold!

 London Fog

 Bliss Hoodie

 Millennium Bridge

 Tower Bridge,  again

We also caught the show, We Will Rock You. It was fantastic. Are you a fan of Queen? Can't say that I am, but it's righteous good stuff. I recommend it. It's amazing how talented these performers are! I was seriously impressed.

I ♥ Borough Market!

London Sites



 Buckingham Palace 

Buckingham Palace

St. Pancras

 The Tower of London

Tower Bridge

London Eye

 Kensington Palace

Big Ben


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