Events

A Day with Sadie!

A Day with Sadie!

Saturday was a blissful Sadie Nardini filled day. Having watched a few of Sadie Nardini’s FREE YouTube video’s over the last few months, when I heard that she was coming to Vancouver, I knew I had to go.

Sadie had several workshops at yyoga (various locations) throughout the weekend, but I was only able to attend the Saturday sessions at Highgate (Burnaby).

{source: www.sadienardini.com}

If you are not familiar with Sadie Nardini, she is the founder of Core Strength Vinyasa Yoga.  Based out of NYC, she travels internationally, has her own Core Strength Vinyasa Yoga teacher training program as well as retreats and offers hundreds of free videos on YouTube.

Saturday consisted of two two hour workshops at the beautiful Highgate Yyoga with some fantastic Core Strength Vinyasa yoga. The basis behind Sadie’s Core Strength Vinyasa yoga is a new way of looking at asana’s and simplifies how to use our “core” more efficiently when practicing. A practice that left me feeling it the next morning, which is the best kind in my opinion. But that’s JUST the yoga!

We all know yoga classes offer us so much more than just the yoga, and what makes us enjoy the asana even better is a fantastic teacher, which Sadie most certainly is. A real, down to earth type of person, who gives you the impression that going out for coffee with the woman would be fun and insightful all at the same time. She has a raw presence about her, and after conversations about “what is the point?”, why do we do the things we do when we really don’t want to? Why do we feel we need to please other people, when it doesn’t please us and why do we feel the need to not tell these people or look out for ourselves? She encouraged us to respectfully but honestly speak our truth, don’t give everything you have to somebody else and leave nothing for yourself.

I find that my most favourite teachers or yoga classes are the ones that give me a piece of self reflection that stays with me as I walk out the door, oh and the soreness the next morning. Take Sadie’s truth message posted on her Facebook account this morning, “THIS week, start saying what you really mean, respectfully, and yet honestly…to yourself, and those around you. Why hide, if you really believe that you’re OK just as you are, that ultimately you don’t need anyone’s acceptance to be passionate and happy and your truth is equally as valid as anyone else’s? Hmmm…”

Brilliantly awesome! Thanks Sadie for a fabulous day of learning how to move through asana’s with more ease and core strength and that little bit of self reflection I needed to start off a new month! Looking forward to your return for the Vancouver Yoga Conference in the fall.

Whistler Yoga Conference 2011

Whistler Yoga Conference 2011

Last year’s Whistler Yoga Conference was an inspiring experience. And this year’s conference will be held at the beautiful Fairmont Chateau Whistler on May 6 – 8 and promises to be an amazing conference for both yoga teachers and students.

This conference will provide a supportive meeting place for yoga students and teachers to grow and expand their practice and vision for the benefit of all. Students of all levels are welcome to participate and be inspired.

Through the avenues of conscious collaboration and the uninhibited sharing of yoga-inspired tools, techniques and yoga teachers experiences, we can aim to develop a global community of teachers and practitioners who will be the change we want to see in this world. Join us on this journey to the majestic mountains, to the nurture of nature, and the timeless experience of yoga.

For more information, including their schedule, fees, and registration, visit their website: whistleryogaconference.com

Sacred Energy Arts Workshop – A Blend Of Yoga, Tai Chi And Qi Gong

Attention yogis in British Columbia! There is another upcoming yoga workshop happening in March (along with an AcroYoga workshop and Kriya Yoga in Victoria):

EXPLORING ENERGY THROUGH MOVEMENT:
SACRED ENERGY ARTS – A BLEND OF YOGA, TAI CHI AND QI GONG

Teacher: Classes will be taught by Matthew Cohen of Exhale Yoga, Center for Sacred Movement, in Venice, California.

Matthew Cohen has been fully immersed in the study and application of Martial, Yogic and Healing Arts for over 30 years.

His integrated approach to healing is potent and accessible.

He is the founder and master teacher at his Sacred Energy Arts Center in Santa Monica and also teaches at Exhale Center for Sacred movement in Venice, CA.

What you will experience:

  • Explore energy through movement
  • Feel your life force pulse through your body
  • Experience the fluid body in asana

The following classes can be taken individually or as a full weekend:

Saturday March 12, 2011

10 AM – 12 PM: Sacred Energy Arts Yoga Class ~ Balance and Flow

3 – 6 PM: Sacred Energy Arts Hips and Hamstrings ~ A Slow Deep Practice

Sunday March 13, 2011

10 – 12 PM: Sacred Energy Arts Yoga Extended Flow Class ~ Stoking the Fire

3 – 6 PM: Sacred Energy Arts Class ~ Taoist Yoga and Qi Gong

Pricing:

2 hour workshops         $50 + HST

3 hour workshops         $60 + HST

full weekend             $190 + HST

Location: Integrative Medical Centre, West Broadway & Ash, Vancouver, BC

Information & Registration: www.soulspringwellness.ca

Email: christina(at)soulspringwellness.ca

Phone: 604-649-8522

Himalayan Kundalini Kriya Yoga Workshop On Vancouver Island

What an exciting time for yoga in BC! There are so many excellent yoga workshops taking place during the month of March. Yogis on Vancouver Island will be especially interested in hearing about an upcoming yoga workshop taking place in beautiful Victoria, BC: Kundalini Kriya Yoga, as taught by Yogiraj Gurunath Siddanath.

Two teachers, one from Seattle and one from Portland will be traveling to Victoria to facilitate this day long workshop. The morning will be regarding self healing techniques and the afternoon will be devoted to Kriya Yoga. Attendees have the option of participating in either the self healing workshop, or the Kriya workshop, or both.

For those unfamiliar with Kriya Yoga, it is a meditation that is of the same lineage as Parmahansa Yoganandas.

Here is more info:

Thich Nhat Hanh Coming to Vancouver

Thich Nhat Hanh a Buddhist monk, teacher, poet, author and peace activist is coming to Vancouver in August. Born in Vietnam in 1926, he entered a Buddhist monastery at sixteen and became a founder of the “Engaged Buddhism” movement and he now has dedicated his life to revealing how the trans-formative practices of meditation & mindfulness can be a basis of social change in our lives and in the world. Now 84, he travels the world extensively to share his message and peace with the world.

The Vancouver event includes a week long retreat from August 08-13, 2011 at UBC which will include daily talks and meditations with the theme of “Awakening the Heart” and aims to have attendees practice as a community and learn to embrace fears and sorrows with mindful living & healing & transformation. After some research and a visit to the Facebook Event page, it would appear that the week long retreat is already almost full.

On the Sunday August 14th, there is also a couple hour talk that is being scheduled for the public on “Open Mind, Open Heart: Touching the Wonders of Now.” The afternoon talk will include a guided meditation & healing chanting with monks & nuns along with a community of people who are all dedicated to live & be instruments of peace & compassion. While ticket and location information has yet to be released, it is certainly going to sell out quickly. To stay up to date when ticket information will be released you can visit the Facebook Event page for the Public Talk.

“We have the power to decide the destiny of our planet.
If we awaken to our true situation, there will be a change in our collective consciousness.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh

This is for sure to be an exciting event, whether you are a practing Buddist or not, this promises to be a very powerful learning experience. I’m hoping to be able to attend the Public Talk and look forward to experiencing this “apostle of peace & non-violence” for myself.

For more information about the event, visit the event website at www.tnhvancouver2011.org.

Anything Is Possible: A Weekend Workshop with Camilla Bergstrom

Yoga has the potential to become something much more than just exercise, and for many of us this exercise is exactly where the journey begins. Our body starts to tone, strengthen, open and then all of a sudden we start to think differently. Eventually the connection is made: as we work on the body, we are working on the mind, the two inseparable.

When we become aware of our bodies and connect to what is happening physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually, anything is possible, according to Camilla Bergstrom: when we are in sync, when we are in harmony with mind and body, we experience the strength and confidence that will lead to the feeling of I can do this and eventually the wisdom that goes beyond it.

Camilla’s 11-hour weekend workshop tested this theory.  Students were offered an opportunity to find their boundaries by examining the thoughts behind the seemingly challenging or impossible. As Camilla put it, ‘the first step is to become aware of our thoughts. Thoughts create an emotion and emotion creates a reaction. If we change the negative thought into a positive, the body will respond and we will find strength we didn’t even know that we had.’

Offering a masterful sequence of inversions, handstands and a variety of standing poses, Camilla teaches a simplistic fusion of yoga style combining self-healing with her experiences, various teacher influences and philosophy. Her teaching approach was challenging, passionate and contagiously courageous. She also took a great deal of time to focus on alignment and individual needs.

The workshop was complemented with breathing techniques and meditation. Students were invited to elongate their inner experiences by writing down and sharing their inner dialogue, as, according to Camilla, there’s more to just feeling yoga in our shoulders or our hips, much, much more, and when we write it down, it helps us to become even more aware of ourselves; it helps us to figure out which plane we are living on. Are we too much in our head? Are our feet on the ground? When we write and share, the experience becomes deeper, more profound, and when we speak it, it almost becomes an agreement.

No stranger to the element of fear, Camilla helps students acknowledge their own veil’s through the process of taking a step back, finding the discipline in their fear and committing to it versus separating from it. Camilla believes that if it means something to us, if it’s important to us, it’s going to happen and we are going to move forward. When the veil is lifted, we find purpose and within purpose we find simplicity: the result of stability, honesty and acceptance.

If you are looking for a life-altering experience, I highly recommend Camilla. You’ll be guaranteed a powerful physical journey and perhaps discover a deeper sense of your own true nature.

The Anything Is Possible weekend workshop took place in December 2010 at Hamsa Yoga Studio in Copenhagen, Denmark. Camilla currently resides in Los Angeles, California and offers local and international private and group classes. She has a podcast and much more information on her website: http://camillabergstrom.com/.

Namaste.

(Photo of Camilla above)

Stayed tuned for next week: Part II of ‘Where the heck did my motivation go?’

The Physical Body

Last weekend I spent Saturday & Sunday afternoon on the floor of Semperviva’s Sea Studio, and sat in on The Physical Body workshop with the lovely Bernie Clark. While the majority of the attendees were taking part in his Yin Teacher Training, they opened up the anatomy & physical body part of the days to anybody who was interested in attending, so being as I’m more of a hands on learner I thought it was the perfect time for a refresher.

The Physical Body ~ http://www.kinesiologist.eu/physical.htm

Yoga Teacher Training programs generally have some information about anatomy & the effects of yoga on our body, but this is something that I have struggled with. I’m not a biologist by any means, and trying to correlate a map of the skeleton and all its pieces to a class and what we are doing & using is not always an easy task. If you have never taken one of Bernie’s classes, I highly recommend it, and knowing this I knew this workshop would really not be the boring mundane put me to sleep talk about bones and muscles, and I was right.

We spent 8 hours looking at the dynamics and bones of the human body & how unfortunately for some of you hardcore yogi’s some poses may be very challenging for you to accomplish just because of the way your bones & body have developed. We learnt the difference between compression, two bones compressing into each other – there is no where for them to go, and tension, tight muscles that are restricting the movement you are trying to accomplish and how to tell the difference between both of them.  Compression is what you feel in the direction of movement and tension is what you feel on the opposite side, ie. raising your arms above your head you would feel compression in your shoulder/humerus & tension in your triceps.

Of course this was just the bare bones of the workshop, no pun intended, and what is happening in your body when you practice yoga and is all dependent on what you are trying to accomplish from the pose, either a stretch or building muscle. It was another well spent weekend at Semperviva and am looking forward to Bernie’s Energy Body workshop taking place this Saturday at the Sea Studio. From the Semperviva website check out this four hour workshops, here’s what you can expect;

“In this workshop we will investigate the various models the Yogis of India, the Yogis of China and the Medical Scientists in the West have developed to explain the workings of the body’s energy and its associated systems. We will explore the world of prana and the energy channels and vortexes of Indian Yoga (called nadis and chakras) and contrast it to the world of Chi (Qi) and its associated network of channels (called meridians) utilized in China. Then we will discover how modern scientific investigations in the West (Energy Medicine) are finding remarkable parallels to these ancient models.”

Winter Solstice & Lunar Eclipse!

The Winter Solstice, December 21st, marks the first day of Winter and is when the Sun is farthest south.   It is a time when many feel the darkness of the days in their moods and energy levels as well as feel the strain of holiday stressors. Since the direct rays of the sun are at their farthest point away from us in the Northern hemisphere, it is the day when the sun is lowest in the sky, and the time between sunrise and sunset is the shortest. From that point on, the days will start to get longer. Tomorrow is also a full moon.

Tonight, there is also a lunar eclipse. This is the first time an eclipse has occurred on the solstice in centuries! A lunar eclipse occurs when the earth becomes perfectly positioned directly between the sun and moon. The earth’s shadow is cast across the moon, and it becomes red or orange. The earth’s shadow will start to move across the moon around midnight, with the end of the eclipse happening around 2 AM. Unlike a solar eclipse, you don’t need anything special to watch a lunar eclipse, except some breaks in the clouds.

Many of us struggle with the dark and short days of winter along side of the holiday stresses. It is a time when our yoga practice becomes even more valuable and helps us to bring light back into our lives. Other ways to ensure that the darkness doesn’t get you down and which the holidays are perfect for is spending time with loved ones and enjoying warm comforting foods.

The new season not only provides us with opportunities to preserve ourselves but to prepare ourselves for the new year ahead and take the much needed time to renew ourselves for Spring.

This is the first time in over 456 years  that a lunar eclipse has occurred on a winter solstice and it is believed that eclipses are a great time for transformation through meditation. Unfortunately with our cloudy, rainy Vancouver weather we are unlikely to see it. There are many different beliefs on the energizing or transforming power of a Lunar Eclipse, and after trolling the web I came across this;

“The main purpose of this years powerful energetic opening on December 21, is to assist you in fully opening your heart, mind, and physical body to successfully merge and align with the new energy. The benefit in this alignment is that it supports you in realigning with the original plan for your life, and the ability to fulfill this purpose. You are here on earth with a unique and special purpose, the astrological alignment of this year seeks to bring you back into full alignment with your unique divine path here on Earth.”  www.experienceproject.com

Eclipses are believed by many to be a time for great transformation through meditation it is said that our energies are magnified and more focused.  Whatever your belief on the effects and roles of the moons and the changing of seasons, there are some Winter Solstice celebration yoga classes around town, here are just a few!

  • Yoga West – TONIGHT, 6:30pm – Healing Ring of Tantra & Full Moon Meditation
  • The Yoga Space – Tomorrow (Dec 21st), 10-12, Celebrate the Winter Solstice

Happy Winter Solstice to all of you and of course Happy Holidays!

Yoga, Yoga, Yoga Everywhere!

Like most Yogi’s in Vancouver, I spent the weekend at the Vancouver Yoga Conference. While I only took two classes, the options seemed to be endless, below is some of my thoughts about what the Vancouver Yoga Conference had to offer & what could be improved next year;

  • Friday the Garden classes didn’t start all afternoon & when they did were not per the times scheduled on the listing.
  • Heard from many friends who were taking sessions that sessions were starting or ending late, while not overly surprising for the first day, it is one thing that makes me crazy is when people forget how valuable everybody else’s time is as well.
  • The Trance Dance, having never experienced anything like it before was interesting to say the least, the room was HOT, and I mean HOT, no air conditioning seemed to be on & people stood in the hallway to get a breath of fresh air, stay out there too long there was no hope of getting back into that room, therefore I didn’t make it to the end.
  • Worked at the booth for YogaBC all three days, meeting lots of friendly faces from yoga teachers to students, great opportunity to network.
  • The tradeshow was smaller than I expected and a lot of really expensive solutions, although one of my favorites (even though I didn’t splurge) were the 3 minute Egg, if you missed out on these or didn’t get to try them out, check out this video; Intro to the 3 Minute Egg
  • The tradeshow seemed to pick up on Sunday, perhaps that was the little bit of rain that we had, but was a lot busier Sunday afternoon than it seemed to have been earlier in the weekend.
  • Sat in on two workshops (Intro to Kids Yoga & How to Teach Yin), both fabulous and left me wanting more, more, more.
  • Certificates for Workshops were an additional cost, not really sure why, with the amount of money lots of people spent to attend the yoga conference, the least they could do is “throw in” a certificate for the classes you attended.

In conclusion, having not been able to attend the yoga conference last year, I found this year to be an insightful, fabulous networking opportunity to build relationships & make some new ones. However, living in Vancouver us Yogi’s are VERY lucky, we get the opportunity to experience many different styles, workshops, retreats and events that happen within our yoga community, so the yoga conference is just an added bonus to a yoga community that already offers so much. If you missed out, no worries, like I said there are LOTS of events happening around the yoga community every week, all you gotta do is find them.

What were your thoughts about the Vancouver Yoga Conference? Did you enjoy or does it need some improvements for next year?

it’s the vancouver yoga conference this weekend!!

i don’t know about the rest of you, but this is pretty much as exciting as christmas for me and i’m actually (almost but not really) bummed that i signed up for a continuing education course today @ UBC (decor and dress in the victorian period) and can’t go all weekend.

i was here last year when the yoga conference was in town, but i had literally just landed off the plane after a 12 hour journey from new york (via houston) with one small slightly (very) opinionated cat that does not (read: hates) to travel (esp. by airplane).  needless to say, namaste-ing with some of the industry’s best was not high on the list of priorities when there were things like litter boxes to be bought.

this weekend however–it’s ON.  there are SO many great instructors coming, and SO many different types of practices to sample!

want to finally stick your headstand?  take michael stone‘s ‘headstands from the inside out’ today from 5:30-7:30.  want to get your boyfriend (or girlfriend) into some crazy poses (of the PG-variety)?  sign up for ‘contact partner yoga’ with marita wieser and christ brandt today from 10:30-12:30.  i’m pulling a double header tomorrow:  seane corn‘s ‘chakra flow’ from 9am-11am (it’s going to be awesome–i don’t normally see the light of day that early on a sunday, so trust me) and natasha rizopoulos‘ ‘take flight–arm balances’ from 11:30-1:30 (arm balances are my FAVE.  i’ll be like a kid in a candy store).

Seane Corn

sessions aren’t cheap, but they’re totally worth it.  when was the last time a new pair of shoes helped you align your pelvic floor?  the conference itself, however, is totally free–and free 1/2 hour yoga sessions will be taking place throughout the day on the main floor, not to mention there will be tons of yoga-related booths to check out, and probably lots of free loot and samples to score (because we all know that’s what yoga’s really about: scoring free stuff).

hope to see you there.

www.theyogaconference.com

sept. 30-oct 3 @ the vancouver convention centre

Help to Improve Yoga in BC!

Are you a member of Yoga BC?

Yoga BC is a non-profit organization, that provides information and services in relation to the Yoga Industry in BC.  As the popularity and interest in yoga continues to significantly grow in Vancouver and BC, Yoga BC offers up-to-date information and assistance to yoga teachers, studios and students.

Having been in operation since 2000, the association runs mainly on the assistance of volunteers. There are currently 426 active members and Yoga BC strives to bring people together in the spirit of unity & co-creation through the awareness, knowledge & practice of yoga.

Even if you are not a teacher, Yoga BC has a membership level for you;

  • Student Membership – $35 for 1 Year gets you Specials from other Yoga BC partners and invitations to special events.
  • Teachers – $99 for 1 Year get you specials from other Yoga BC Partners (Right now includes Meditation Village, Banyen Books & LuLu Lemon), invitations to special events, unlimited postings in community calendar workshops, events & retreats, discounts on First Aid & CPR Training & Discounts on insurance!
  • Studios – $225 for 1 Year gets you 3 Teacher Members, unlimited event postings, discounted banner advertising, discounts on insurance, invitations to networking events!

In 2010, Yoga BC has strengthened its vision, its presence in the community & value to members focusing their energy on initiating continuing education programs, launched a Code of Ethics, negotiated a spectacular membership rate for liability insurance and continued to facilitate its role as a hub for all questions yoga in BC with thousands of requests to support students, teachers and studios along their journey.

In 2011, Yoga BC is looking forward to supporting the advancement & standards of teacher training curriculum, developing a teacher training recognition program & mentor-ship program, expanding the professional development series by offering webinars, luncheons & workshops, and begin the process of developing best practices for yoga teachers in collaboration with BC yoga studios.

Join them, in helping to improve the practice of yoga for students, teachers and studios in BC. Want to learn more? Come and see us at Booth #507 at the Vancouver Yoga Conference all weekend, or stop by just to say Hi!

global mala at vancouver’s largest donation based yoga studio.

if you haven’t been to yoga for the people on hastings st. in gastown, you must go.

their schedule features some of the top yogis in vancouver, the space is amazing, and best of all the studio is 100% donation based.

i couldn’t imagine a better place to partake in global mala on a rainy saturday morning than in the warmth and serenity of cofounder and yogi-extraordinaire suzanne slocum-gori (below, left) and the melodic voice of sparrow tiffany brulotte.

suzanne (left) and sparrow (right) after 85 minutes of global mala dedication

global mala occurs every year in conjunction with yoga month on the fall equinox (usually the 19th or 20th of september) and consists of 108 rounds of practice–the most common being sun salutations.

suzanne guided us through 100 A’s, and 8 B’s, an 85-minute ‘moving meditation’ in which we were asked to dedicate 25 salutations to four different areas:  ourselves, our friends and family, the world, and everything in-between.

108 is a daunting number, but the practice proved far more mental than physical (although i did sweat like a yogic beast and my legs are tired).

i started off strong, setting my intentions and moving with my breath until somewhere around number 65, where sparrow’s melodic voice and suzanne’s gental guidance pulled me through and i finished my 8 B’s like a champ.

savasana had never felt sweeter.

go check out yoga for the people and mark your calendars for global mala 2011.

www.yogaforthepeople.ca

201-150 hastings st, vancouver BC

Win A Passport To Prana Card!

We blogged about the awesome card last week. Now, Passport to Prana is offering our readers the chance to win 1 of 3 Passport to Prana cards!

How to enter the Passport To Prana contest:

1. Post a comment below.

2. Or, Tweet following on Twitter: @VanYogaReview @PassportToPrana contest: http://bit.ly/baKjGu

3. If you comment AND Tweet, your name will be entered twice into the draw!

Contest ends September 30th at 12:00pm.

Good luck everyone!

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