6 YOGA + LIFESTYLE TIPS FOR BETTER SLEEP

6 YOGA + LIFESTYLE TIPS FOR BETTER SLEEP

In an age of busy-ness it’s no wonder that as a society we are just desperate for ways to take time out, get better sleep, or at least enjoy the rest time we DO HAVE.

The great irony is that although so many of us are starved for rest and relaxation, when night falls - the mind may feel overly anxious, unable to wind down - further perpetuating the cycle of exhaustion.

One of the BEST side effect of a regular yoga practice is the allure of better quality of sleep.

Research shows that yoga can help us connect with our rest and digest or ‘relaxation response’ more readily. To give us the skills to observe when we are in a state of fight or flight and the tools on how to move from a state of feeling wound up, anxious or distracted to being more readily able to let go.

If you’re reading this, chances are you already know the do’s and dont’s for better sleep. But in my experience it’s easy for the downward spiral exhaustion and an overactive mind to make it even more challenging to change our habits (can’t sleep - watch screen - stay up late - need a pick me up in the morning - enter caffeine - can’t sleep)…. you get the drift.

You might even have convinced yourself that you LIKE living this way….

“I’m a night owl”

“I’m more creative when it’s late”

“I get my best work done when the kids have gone to bed”

“I can’t imagine my life without coffee”…..

“I thrive on being busy all the time”

Sound familiar? If it feels like I’m reading your exhausted mind it’s because I literally have at one stage said ALL those things. And hey - there’s no denying that some of us are just wired to prefer the solitude and stillness that night time avails….. but let me ask you this…

How’s that working out for you?

  • Do you find it hard to get out of bed in the morning?

  • Do you feel bloated and puffy?

  • Do you feel exhausted… or just TIRED…. ALL THE TIME?

  • Are you out of sync with the rest of your family’s rhythms?

  • When was the last time you put yourself to bed with a book instead of a screen?

As a reformed night owl and ‘always busy’ business owner, I definitely have some tips on how to turn your sleep patterns around and trust me…. once you’ve settled into some more conventional sleep patterns its amazing how other areas of your life click into place.

TIP #1

MEDITATE + DO YOGA NIDRA
Many people have a pre-sleep routine that helps them relax. Relaxation techniques before bed have been shown to improve sleep quality and are another common technique used to treat insomnia. Why not try an evening Guided Meditation or Yoga Nidra practice before settling into bed?

TRY THIS >> Here is a free guided meditation practice to do tonight before you get into bed. Try using a prop for ultimate relaxation like an eye pillow (we love local brand Mukti’s organic cotton eye pillow) or a sleep mask to block out harsh lighting.

TIP #2

CHOOSE YOUR PRACTICE WISELY
Whilst a regular yoga practice will most likely help you to sleep better, if you are SUPER sensitive, you might want to look at what type of practice you are doing. You’ll notice at the studio our yin classes tend to be in the evenings or afternoon - and that’s because a yin class is energetically geared to helping you connect with your relaxation response.

Strong backbends or inversions late at night are likely to have an energising effect on the body - so it’s best to balance out stronger night practices with a decent savasana or yoga nidra (see audio above) to help your nervous system wind down.

TRY THIS >> Book an evening yin class or listen to our yoga nidra track if you do an energising practice in the evening. Restorative poses like legs up the wall, shoulderstand, reclining over a bolster and forward folds are all calming for the nervous system - so incorporating those at the end of your yoga practice will help ease you into rest and digest.

TIP #3

MINDFUL MORNINGS
I grew up in a household where sleeping in was the norm. So it was never in my DNA to get up early. I bumbled my way through school and uni like this and it wasn’t until I did yoga teacher training that I established a regular habit of getting up at 5am. I think the key to getting up early - is you need to know that it’s going to suck big time at first (especially if you are still staying up late at night). The other thing is that it’s super hard to get your body clock to chop and change, BUT if you give mindful mornings a go - you WILL start to notice your body is ready for rest when night comes.

TRY THIS >> Buddy up with a friend and commit to trying a mindful morning routine for a week or two weeks. Trust me when I say that you WILL usually get out of bed when someone else is depending on you. I recommend getting up at around 5.30am, heading to a 6am yoga class, doing a beach walk, going for a swim, or something that is going to get your body moving in a nurturing way. On yoga or workout mornings I will usually have a cup of tea, or beach walk mornings I’ll usually have a weak coffee.

TIP #4

HAVE A SET BEDTIME ROUTINE
This follows on from Tip #1 (because essentially the two go hand in hand).

We don’t make our children have a set bedtime for no good reason, right? Having a set bedtime helps to regulate your body clock, avoid the release of stress hormones, improve your body’s ability to heal and could help you fall asleep and stay asleep for the night.

Try sticking to a sleep schedule of the same bedtime and wake up time, (yes, even on the weekends). I personally have Sundays as a sleep in - which means that I’m usually still waking up around 6am, taking it easy with a cuppa, reading or just enjoying the slow pace of Sundays.

TRY THIS >> Set a bedtime notification to prompt you to wind down for the evening. A checklist of the same night routine will also help your body get into the ‘wind down’ habit.

FOR ME IT LOOKS A BIT LIKE THIS:

Evening dinner > Family bed routine > Clean up dinner + shower > Get ready for tomorrow > Read or Downtime > Bed

My evenings USED to end around 12am-2am (no joke)… but over the past 6 years I’ve slowly wound it back to between 9pm-11.30pm which works well for me personally. Having an early morning ritual has definitely helped the night time situation.

TIP #5

BED IS FOR SLEEP, NOT SCREEN TIME!
Are you guilty of this? I’m SO guilty it’s not funny. So there I said it. You can’t be good at everything. BUT let’s face it - we know it’s not the best right? Do you find yourself settling into bed for the night, only to spend an hour either watching Netflix or using your phone to scroll through emails, reply to messages and catch up on social media? Your mind needs to associate being in bed with sleeping rather than watching TV, using your computer or phone. 

TRY THIS >> Option 1: Put your phone on charge in another part of your bedroom, or even another part of the house thirty minutes before you plan to go to bed. This way you wont be tempted to reach for it. (If you’re like me and need your alarm then this might not be an option unless you invest in a separate alarm clock)

Option 2: Weaning yourself off your phone habits might be another way to go. For me personally - I don’t check work emails or social media… but I’m still guilty in binging on a bit of netflix.

Option 3: Commit to reading a real book as the last thing you do before you switch off the light.

TIP #6

AVOID CAFFEINE AND ALCOHOL IN THE AFTERNOON AND EVENINGS
Caffeine consumption and alcohol can significantly worsen sleep quality, especially if you drink large amounts in the late afternoon or evening. Relying on a coffee to wake us up in the morning, another in the afternoon to keep us going and then a wine or beer to help us ‘wind down’ in the evenings isn’t uncommon, but really detrimental to our sleep, overall health and wellbeing.

If you put yourself to bed with a glass of wine and wake up with a strong coffee - chances are you’re going to burn out at some stage. It might be sustainable for the short term but in the long run something has to give. Broken sleep can have a whole host of side effects - weight gain - inflammation - increased stress response - moodiness.

TRY THIS >> Decide whether going cold turkey is sustainable or not then choose your pathway!

Option 1: Go cold turkey.

I think cutting everything out at once can be hard to sustain if there are other issues at hand (like family members not being on board or trying to make too many changes at once). Usually the hardest part is the first 1-7 days (prepare for 1-2 days of hardcore headaches when giving up caffeine). The benefits of going cold turkey is that you then see pretty immediate results within about a week.

Ditch the afternoon coffee for a herbal tea or a spiced chai latte, and try to limit alcohol consumption to special occasions only. Try it for one week and see how much better you sleep!

I personally prefer alcohol free days but you have to find what works for you. If you are used to using alcohol to help you sleep, know that initially it’s going to get harder before you start to see the benefits.

Option 2: Cut back + modify your habits.

If you are wanting to make gradual changes over time, this makes the most sense and you might find yourself less likely to give up.

Replace the 3pm coffee with a cup of tea or short walk instead - maybe option for your full strength coffee first thing in the morning when it is less likely to affect your sleep patterns.

For alcohol - look at what the triggers are and when you are likely to pour that glass of wine. Spritzing, cutting back or saving alcohol for the weekends or special occasions are all options.

wollongong yoga top tips for better sleep younga yoga studio


YOGA OFF THE MAT + GIVING BACK

YOGA BEYOND THE MAT + GIVING BACK…

younga yoga studio community

The yoga & wellness ‘industry’ (and sometimes us as a studio) are often criticised for the focus on physical postures, and an elitist form of yoga that subscribes and caters for those with health & wealth already in their corner.

I’m not going to lie - sometimes we definitely feel like part of the problem…

This is an area that we are conscious of and know that just by living in Australia - having a roof over our head - having our health & access to free education means that we are already ahead of the game when it comes to a leg up in life.

One of my favourite yoga teachers David Swenson (who incidentally practices a very physical form of yoga) once said to me that the true mark of a yogi is someone who leaves the world a better place than what they found it.

Our actions matter. There is literally no point engaging your quadriceps in trikonasana or being able to still the mind in meditation if you are walking out the door never willing to see how you can use your newfound awareness to address social issues and have a positive impact on those around you.

I believe that small steps count.

I believe that healthy people help create healthy communities.

I believe that healthy people place less stress on our already strained medical system.

So even at a bare minimum - whilst yoga is not about postures, flexibility, or looking a certain way - when we FEEL well - we are literally in a better place to contribute to society and help others.

Likewise, when we feel unwell or lose our health, things just seem harder. It’s a strain mentally to deal with chronic pain or illness. When we see others in need we should ask ourselves “how can I help?”

As a business, sure, we have challenges - but overall we are extremely lucky and so we regularly support local charities, individuals and causes that are dear to our heart or with which we have a personal connection. This month we thought we’d let you know of some of the causes we are giving back to.

If you want to contribute - great.

If not that’s ok too - there are lots ways to be of service to your community, whether it’s donating your time, money, buying power (thinking about how your actions have a flow on affect to those around you).

Selfless service - whatever form it comes in is part of your yoga practice beyond the mat.

JOIN THE FIGHT - HELP RACH BEAT LYME DISEASE

wollongong fundraiser

A much loved member of our Younga Yoga community, Rachel Channon, is about to undertake treatment overseas for Lyme Disease.

Lyme disease is a multi-systemic illness that can result in symptoms affecting many parts of the body including the muscles, joints, organs, brain, gastro-intestinal and neurological systems.

Chronic lyme disease symptom complexes are under review but currently not recognised in Australia. It is often described as an ‘invisible illness’. This means that Rach and her family aren’t currently getting the treatment they desperately need.

If you’ve ever had free treatment for an injury or illness you know what a privilege this is. Something many of us take for granted.

fundraising trivia night is being held on March 22 at the Corrimal RSL club. This event will help to support Rach in receiving treatment in Germany in May to help her treat this debilitating disease.


You can read more about Rach’s story via this Illawarra Mercury Article. If you cannot make it to her fundraiser, here is a link to her GoFundMe page. If you are a local business - you can also donate a prize for the trivia night - we hear there is a yoga pass already up for grabs ;-)

 

MUKTI EYE PILLOWS :: SUPPORTING POD

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We have recently stocked some incredible Mukti Eye Pillows in the studio. These aren’t just incredible because they’re made locally and smell divine & come with their own little carry case, but they are handmade in Australia by POD, a local group of women who create long-term and sustainable changes in the lives of individuals and their communities in Australia and overseas.

Many of you know Gail Isedale - one of POD’s champions - who has been a dear part of our yoga community since 2011. Gail is one of those people who embodies the values of yoga beyond the mat through selfless service.

Mukti mats are also a locally owned business by fellow yogini Lis White and her partner Dave - we love to support local - so when you purchase an eye pillow through us or through Mukti - know that you are supporting a local, sustainable and socially conscious product. These make the perfect mother’s day present (which is creeping up on us).

POD believes in empowering people through support and education. Community-led initiatives have longer-lasting benefits because you’re not relying on one person, or one group of people to implement and maintain change, it becomes a community effort and shared mission.

Your purchase will help Mukti to empower, support and educate communities in need.
You can pick up a Mukti Organic Eye Pillow in studio to treat yourself or that special person in your life.

YUMMY ASIAN VEGETARIAN SLAW RECIPE

Image: www.feastingathome.com/asian-slaw/

Image: www.feastingathome.com/asian-slaw/

SICK OF SOGGY SALAD? TRY GIVING CABBAGE A GO FOR THE ULTIMATE LUNCHBOX CRUNCH.

Russ and I have been on a bit of a cabbage binge the last 12 months. If you're tired of kale & english spinach - maybe it's time to give this versatile veggie a go?

We love cabbage and always have some in the fridge for the following reasons:

  • lasts longer than most other salad staples

  • easy to prepare in advance

  • doesn't go soggy (no more gross slimy lettuce greens)

  • great in salad, slaw, pickled, stir fried and fantastic fillings for wraps and rolls

One of the other great things is you can prep a whole cabbage at the beginning of the week and just have it ready to grab and go. If you love salads you can swap dressings and toppings to avoid getting bored! Give these dressings a go:

  • asian inspired (think soy, ginger, garlic, brown sugar, lime, chilli & sesame oil)

  • on the sweet side (mayonaise, honey, apple cider vinegar, mustard)

  • lemon, avocado, pepper + pinenuts with your choice of protein

Aside from rotating the dressings, you can try swapping out your toppings for:

  • toasted almonds

  • maple peacans

  • pan fried tofu (use the asian inspired dressing to stir fry)

CHECK OUT OUR GO-TO FAVE CABBAGE SLAW RECIPE!

  • 6-7 cups of mixed slaw - we usually prep a whole red cabbage + a whole white cabbage a week in advance then store in an airtight container in water in the fridge. Use a mandolin for the finest most awesome cabbage. Bulk it out with finely chopped carrots, brocolini and you’re good to go.

  • 3 scallions, sliced

  • 1 cup coriander

    DRESSING

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

  • ¼ cup rice wine vinegar

  •  3 tablespoons brown rice syrup, agave or honey

  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce (or GF alternative like Braggs or Coconut Aminos)

  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced ( use a garlic press)

  • 1 tablespoon ginger, finely chopped

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • ½ teaspoon chili flakes or chili paste ( optional)

Get the full recipe at: https://www.feastingathome.com/asian-slaw/

PRENATAL YOGA WOLLONGONG - TOP TIPS FOR YOUR FIRST CLASS

Image: Deb Young

Image: Deb Young

TOP TIPS FOR YOUR FIRST PRENATAL YOGA CLASS AT YOUNGA YOGA STUDIO

If you've never done a yoga class - or brand new to prenatal yoga - you might have a lot of questions about what to expect. You might also be feeling anxious about your pregnancy and wondering when is the best time to start.

Don't worry - we've got you covered so that all you need to do is turn up and let us take care of the rest.

Below we’ve included our FAQs as well as some things to consider for your first prenatal yoga class in Wollongong at Younga Yoga.


WHEN SHOULD I TAKE MY FIRST PRENATAL YOGA CLASS?

From a scientific perspective - there are no hard and fast rules - the Royal College of Obstetrics doesn’t not advise avoiding yoga or exercise for the first trimester (a rule that is often given at many yoga studios) - in fact in recent years the guidelines have changed to say that you should remain active throughout your pregnancy - and that starting new activities is also totally fine. If your pregnancy is considered low risk, you don’t have a history of miscarriage and you are feeling like you have the energy to start in your first trimester - then by all means come along. Unlike joining a Bikram class that is heated, or a very strenuous class, our prenatal yoga classes are already modified to be safe for pregnancy.

From an energetic perspective - some women feel totally fine during their first trimester, and some women feel exhausted and nauseous. At Younga Yoga - we welcome you at any stage of your pregnancy and will provide rest options if needed, so it’s really up to you when you decide to start.

First trimester moms - you might need to rest more than usual - but we will help guide you and give rest options if needed.

Second trimester moms - this is the PERFECT time to start - the earlier the better. You are probably starting to feel like you have more energy - and the great thing about starting early in your second trimester is that your experience will grow with your belly…. it’s still easy to move around and generally the second trimester is when you will have the most energy .

Third trimester moms - you are still more than welcome to join our classes. We get that life is busy and perhaps you just haven’t had the headspace to deal with anything extra - but now that this pregnancy is feeling more real - you are in a space where you are ready to get serious about preparing for birth.

I HAVE LOWER BACK PAIN / ACHEY HIPS / ABDOMINAL SEPARATION…

No problem. Yoga has been clinically shown to benefit a number of pregnancy related aches and pains. The majority of these issues are very common in pregnancy due to the natural changes in biomechanics, hormones and gait.

At Younga Yoga - we use our 13+ years experience to change and modify the yoga practice for all sorts of pregnancy related aches and pains.

If your pain is significant - or seems to be getting worse after the yoga practice - we recommend checking in with a physiotherapist that specialises in pregnancy. We work closely with our co-founder Russell Young (Exercise Physiologist) as well as local physiotherapists to ensure our practices are modified accordingly. Just discuss any aches or pains with Deb or your teacher before class so we can help adjust the practice as we go.

WHAT TYPE OF YOGA IS THIS CLASS?

We teach an alignment based vinyasa yoga practice - that is flowing, incorporates techniques to help you relax and be present with your body and baby - but also incorporates strengthening work. We modify the classes depending on everyone’s energy levels on the day - so sometimes it’s super active and more fitness based, sometimes it’s more restorative.

WHAT DO I HAVE TO BRING?

Consider our studio like your own personal sanctuary in the Wollongong CBD. We provide high quality ethically made props (mats, bolsters, blankets), so there is no need to bring a thing.

If you already have your own yoga mat - of course feel free to bring that.

If you book in ahead of time, we’ll reserve a mat for you and have everything set up ready to go.

WHERE DO I PARK?

You can park on Thomas Street or Market Street - it’s metered until 4.30pm weekdays - after that it’s free.

On weekends and out of business hours - you can park in the Council Carpark across the road - it is boom-gated between office hours, but free evenings and weekends.

WHAT SHOULD I WEAR?

Depending on the season - layers is best. Stretchy clothing that you can move easily in. As a general rule avoid skirts, dresses and denim.

CAN I DRINK DURING CLASS OR HAVE SNACKS?

Feel free to bring your own water. You are welcome to hydrate as needed. If you need to bring some small snacks like nuts or fruit to manage nausea/energy levels - that is ok as well - you can take a short break if needed - we just ask that no food is consumed in the actual yoga studio.

WHAT TIME SHOULD I ARRIVE?

For your first lesson - please arrive 10mins early to give yourself time to fill out a quick health form and prepare for class. On subsequent lessons you can arrive around 5mins early.

WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE CLASS?

Each class is different - we usually work with a theme for the class with a similar flow that looks something like this:

  • breath work to help you let go of your day and focus on being present

  • seated warm up & mindful movement to help prepare your body for the practice

  • standing strength sequences linked with the breath to help you build strength & stamina

  • partner work acupressure tips for labour + pregnancy (we give other options if you aren’t feeling like doing partnerwork on the day)

  • postures to help you you connect with your breathing, inner wisdom, listen to your body and relax with your baby

WHEN ARE CLASSES HELD?

Tuesdays 4.30pm-5.30pm (run as a 6 week course with 1 week off in between - check the app for times)

Saturdays 9.30am-10.30am (runs continuously throughout the year except public holidays and xmas)

I’M BOOKED INTO A COURSE CAN I DO A MAKE UP LESSON?

Our 6 week course runs on tuesdays - you are more than welcome to take a makeup lesson on Saturdays if you can’t make every tuesday.



YOGA ASANA 101 :: FINDING FREEDOM, FLEXIBILITY + STRENGTH IN TRIANGLE POSE [TRIKONASANA]

Image: Todd Barnes

Image: Todd Barnes

FINDING FIRM FOUNDATION + FREEDOM IN TRIKONASANA [TRIANGLE POSE]

Triangle or trikonasana is one of yoga's most well known & practiced postures. Physically it helps to unravel the hamstrings & adductors (inner thigh). Symbolically the upward pointing triangle represents firm foundation, stability, exploration, creativity & transformation.

In this article we look at some of the key alignment tips that when mastered over time can help you find firm foundation & strength + freedom in the body & mind.

KEY ALIGNMENT TIPS FOR TRIKONASANA

FOOT PLACEMENT >>>

Place the feet in a generously wide stance (about as far apart as the wrists are wide - when outstretched).

Heel of front foot in line with the arch of the back foot - right foot (front foot) in line with your mat.

Back foot parallel to the back edge of your mat - or slightly turned in.


KEY ACTIONS >>>

Front leg rotates outward and upward - lift through the arch of the front foot - lift the knee cap up to create a sense of muscular tone & strength through the legs.

Back leg rotates inward - allowing the natural curve of the lower back.

Visualise the quadriceps drawing upward as though the muscles are hugging the leg bones to help create a sense of ‘drawing in’ or muscular tone in the legs without hyper-extending or locking the kneecap.

Even though there is a slight internal rotation of the back leg - balance this out by pressing into the little toe edge to form a stable base of support through the inner AND outer edges of the feet.


ARM PLACEMENT >>>

Right hand comes to the floor (or a block if it helps you to find more length through the spine).

Variations are to hold the big toe (ashtanga) / Use a block (beginners) / Or prop on fingertips for more buoyancy + space.

The top arm can settle on the hip (often good for beginners), or in the full expression of the pose lifts up and away from the midline of the body. Both arms extending outward - to create a feeling of space & organic expansion.


TORSO + PELVIS >>>

When I started practising around 15 years ago - I learnt this pose by visualising my body between two panes of glass. The problem with this approach is that it results in a lot of stress for the Sacro-Illiac - so ideally - visualise the natural curve of your lower back and honour that!

Imagine the pelvis like an anchor point - and from there press down through the legs toward the edges of the feet.


TIPS FOR BEGINNER STUDENTS >>>

If you’re a beginner and new to Trikonasana - you might wonder if you will ‘ever’ feel a sense of ease and freedom in the this posture. It might feel like your hamstrings are screaming at you - or that the floor feels too far away.

TRY >>>

Taking a slightly longer stance (often by lengthening the stance you’ll feel less ‘choked up’).

Bending the front leg to help you bring the hand to the floor.

Then, once your hand is grounded to the floor or a block - straighten the front leg and think of an upward outward spiral.

If the top arm or shoulder feels tense - try bringing your top hand to your sacrum and focus on lifting and lengthening through the torso & relaxing the jaw. Draw the head of the arm back to create space and openess through the chest as you open the ribs outward and upward.


Image: Todd Barnes

Image: Todd Barnes

TIPS FOR EXPERIENCED STUDENTS >>>

So you’re feeling somewhat comfortable in trikonasana - time to refine…

TRY >>>

Lifting the toes and spreading them to create muscular tone in the legs.

Dragging the heel of the front foot backwards without actually moving it to activate and strengthen the hamstrings (especially useful for those with attachment injuries).

To activate a slight jalandara bandha before turning the head to look up - creating length through the back of the neck.

Focus on expanding out from the pelvis down to the soles of the feet & out through to the fingertips & crown of the head as you visualise the dance between stability & freedom in the your body.

Don’t jam the pelvis forward here - honour the curve of your lower back.


CREATING STABILITY TO FIND FREEDOM >>>

Once you feel grounded & stable - focus on extending down through to the soles of the feet + expanding out through to the fingertips. When we think of the body expanding in this way - it offers a chance to connect with the divine, to experience the flow of prana or lifeforce through the body + invite spaciousness, creativity & joy.


WHAT TRIKONASANA CAN TEACH US ABOUT LIFE OFF THE YOGA MAT >>>

As a standing posture with a wide base + narrow top, trikonasana is a pose that represents strength and stability coupled with exploration, creativity & ascention to a higher connection to spirit.

By taking the time to set our foundation up in a methodical and stable way - using support if needed - we then give the body permission to be creative, expand + take risks.

In the pose - this might be the simple action of turning the eye gaze up toward the ceiling, or by playing with variations such as a heart opening bind behind the back, or to re-create this shape in other more playful ways in the practice.

Off the mat - when we feel strong in our foundation - taking the time to set good habit patterns - it gives us the freedom to play & break the rules knowing that at anytime we can return to this sense of stability + foundation.

Like the chef who starts with recipes to form a solid foundation before finding the freedom to experiment with flavours…

Like the child who starts with routine & structure at home in order to feel safe enough to find independence & create relationships with others….

Like the musician who must first spend thousands of hours training the ear, body & brain to learn chord progressions before graduating to improvising….

Like our relationships that benefit from boundaries in order for love, trust & expression to evolve…

The lesson of creating a stable foundation before finding freedom & expansion goes way beyond the mechanics of the physical body.

YOUNGA YOGA WOLLONGONG :: NEW LOOK SCHEDULE 2019

Image: Deb Young @youngayogastudio

Image: Deb Young @youngayogastudio

NEW LOOK SCHEDULE 2019

“What I like most about change is that it's synonym for 'hope'. If you are taking a risk, what you are really saying is, 'I believe in tomorrow and I will be part of it.” - Linda Ellerbee

2019 is well and truly upon us and we’ve given our timetable a little tweak for the year ahead!

After 13 years as studio owners - we know that sometimes these changes are welcomed with open arms and sometimes not - but really - like the quote says…. the fact that our gorgeous community, studio and schedule continues to change and evolve over time… means that we are just as committed to our practice and our community as when we opened 13 years ago.

This past year… we’ve noticed the trend across the yoga world (here in Australia and in the US) in reducing class times from the traditional format of 90mins, down to 75, down to 60.

It will ALWAYS be our intention to honour the yoga practice beyond the physical…. which is why we will always include pranayama, savasana & mindfulness in every practice - BUT we also understand that not everyone has 90mins for the luxury of a yoga class.

So we’ve decided to keep a spectrum of all three length of classes on the timetable to help those that are time poor, as well as honour the longer format (which means we don’t have to skimp on savasana and pranayama).

WHAT’S NEW + WHAT’S CHANGING?

✔︎ Monday schedule remains the same.

✔︎ TUES 10AM will move to 8AM -9.15AM (STARTS TUES 26TH FEB). We are using this as a chance to test an earlier day class timeslot - leaving you free for the rest of the day. Please support this class if you like the idea of slightly earlier day classes.

✔︎ TUES PRENATAL now starts at 4.30PM (already active)

✔︎ WED 12.15PM class will finish up FEB 20th. Thank you to all who have supported our Wednesday lunch classes over the years. We have decided to remove this class as attendance is quite inconsistent - and use this a chance to add an additional Saturday class to ease our waitlists that often occur on that day. If you would like to organise a private corporate lunchtime class - we are more than happy to accommodate your needs - just get in touch with details about preferred time, expected numbers and we can provide a quote.

✔︎ THURS 5.45PM will now run for 75mins and be a regular vinyasa class with strength drills included. This is an all levels class - and actually perfect for those that would like to strengthen key muscle groups after recovering from an injury. This class is taught by Russ Young - Exercise Physiologist.

✔︎ THURS BEGINNERS will start 15mins earlier 7.15PM-8.30PM (effective from next course start date - March 14th)

✔︎ Friday classes remain the same.

✔︎ NEW SAT 6.30AM (STARTS SAT 2ND MARCH) This is a fitness based class with CORE, HANDSTANDS + HIIT with Russell Young.

Wollongong Yoga Timetable

CORPORATE CLASSES AT LUNCHTIME:

Still keen for a lunchtime class? For those of you who work in town - why not get a group of your colleagues together for a workplace class or let us take care of you at the studio. Just send us through your preferred day, time and number of participants and we’ll send you a quote.

If you have any questions about the new schedule - please phone the studio on 4227 1997 (if we don’t pick up we’ll call you back) or alternatively email us at: info@youngayogastudio.com.au 

YOGA NIDRA :: GO WITH THE FLOW

Image:  @nicole.derooy  + @muktimats (avail in studio)

Image: @nicole.derooy + @muktimats (avail in studio)

YOGA NIDRA WORKSHOP WITH LANA GO WITH THE FLOW OF LIFE

"Going with the flow is responding to cues from the universe. When you go with the flow, you're surfing Life Force. It's about wakeful trust and total collaboration with what's showing up for you" - Danielle LaPorte

It is said that much of human suffering comes from wishing things were different rather than accepting (and working through) what is. In this workshop we will meditate on acceptance, non-grasping, going with the flow and finding peace in riding the river of your life.

IN THIS YOGA WORKSHOP WE WILL

✔︎ Learn simple centering Pranayama techniques to energise, focus and centre the mind
✔︎ Gently move and stretch your body, increasing awareness, presence and preparation for comfortable meditation.
✔︎ Explore your own resistance to what is. Locate and release fear and doubt, invite trust, courage and peace.
✔︎ Rest comfortably as you are guided through a systematic Yoga Nidra meditation, resulting in a sense of peace, ease and wholeness.
✔︎ Enjoy an opportunity to meet like minded people and ask questions regarding Yoga philosophy and techniques.

Yoga Nidra is an immensely powerful meditation technique and is one of the easiest yoga practices to develop and maintain. This gentle practice is accessible for everyone, from children to seniors, beginners and experienced yogis alike and focuses on multiple levels of well being.

It is said to be the most profound level or relaxation possible. Reported benefits include; reduced anxiety and stress, reduced blood pressure, emotional healing, improved sleep quality, improved mental focus, decision making and memory, increased self awareness and a deeper feeling of inner peace and connection with all life.

WHEN:

Sunday March 24th // 6.30pm - 8.30pm 

INVESTMENT:

$45 per person 

Image:  @bonezfilmz  for Younga Yoga Studio

Image: @bonezfilmz for Younga Yoga Studio

MEET LANA:

Lana is well known for her strong yet steady strength based vinyasa Yoga classes & blissful meditation workshops - held regularly at Younga Yoga Studio. 

She completed her training at Life Source in 2011 with Christina Brown and Richard Allen and has continued to train, learn and grow with a variety of incredible teachers since, including Annie Carpenter, Flo Fenton, Duncan Peak and Ana Forrest.

Lana believes modern Yoga offers a mental break from our busy lives and an opportunity to connect with our peaceful, inner self, resulting in a sense of calm perspective. 


REFUND POLICY:

Due to the nature of the course we are unable to provide refunds, transfers or rain-checks - all purchases are final - please check your diary before enrolling. 

BOOKING WITH A FRIEND?

If you are booking into this course with a family member or friend, please make sure you register and enrol separately. 

Purchasing multiple tickets on the one account will only enrol the person who made the purchase.

If you have any questions about this phone the studio on 4227 1997 or email info@youngayogastudio.com.au 

5 TOP TIPS ON HOW TO PRACTICE SAFELY AFTER A LONG BREAK

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ARE YOU THINKING ABOUT GETTING BACK TO YOGA AFTER A BREAK? 

It's no secret that when you start back at a physical activity (including yoga) after taking a long break, the body takes time to adjust. Aches and pains are to be expected - and sometimes you might find that old injuries flare up. 

Our aim is to help you practise safely and with awareness, and to practise in a way TODAY that ensures you can continue practising TOMORROW. So, today we thought we'd share with you our 5 top tips on how to practice yoga safely after a long break! 

TIP #1

Notify your teacher of any recent injuries, pain or surgeries you've had. As a teacher in front of a class of 30 people, I am used to catering for all different kinds of injuries, pregnancy & other conditions at once, but I'm not a mind reader! So the #1 thing you need to do as a yoga student if you have any old injuries or recent niggles to let the teacher know so they can give you safe options in class.

TIP #2

Listen carefully for modifications given in class that apply to you.  During most (good) yoga classes, you'll hear options that are given in case you have certain injuries or conditions. You'll also often hear the phrase "if you'd like to take it further" which is teacher speak for "if you are breathing in a relaxed way, pain free and will not pop a blood vessel trying this, then take it further". 

In upward dog, we'll often give you the option to do baby cobra instead. Watch this video with Deb on why baby cobra is often a better choice for those who've had a break or those with shoulder issues.

Click here to watch the video

TIP #3

Rest as needed, during & between classes. One of the biggest reasons that people get injured (especially after a break) is because they come back TOO HARD TOO SOON. So make sure you allow yourself the time to rest during class & also allow for sufficient rest between classes when you first get back. 

TIP #4

Choose your classes carefully & choose options that are suitable for you. Not all classes are created equally - so it's good to consider what your everyday life looks like (is it sedentary, stressful, fast or slow paced) and then match your class to your lifestyle needs. 

As an example, if you have a very physical job, or your life is very fast paced, a YIN class is a great option to help you slow down & benefit from restorative postures. On the other hand, if your lifestyle is quite sedentary then you might benefit from a strength based classes, or a beginner specific class to address technique with repetition.

Of course sometimes you just have to make it to the class timeslot that suits your schedule, so you can always ask your teacher how to make the practice more restorative or challenging depending on your needs.

TIP #5

Take a private lesson to refine your technique. If you've got an injury, or want to focus on something specific in your yoga practice, then a private lesson with one of our teachers, or Exercise Physiologist: Russ Young is a great option. We offer 30 and 60min sessions and can tailor the session specific to you and your needs. In some cases (chronic pain or an ongoing injury or medical condition) Medicare provides a 50% rebate if you have a health care plan from your GP and referral for Exercise Physiology. 

We are super passionate about helping our students build strength, stamina, improve life balance & get more flexible - both physically on the mat, and mentally by being able to cope more effectively with life's ups and downs.

Let us know here via email if there is anything we can do to help you.

Love Deb & Russ.

IT'S COMING :: 10 DAYS OF TAPAS - OUR NEW YEAR INTENSIVE OPENS SOON

younga yoga studio 10 days of tapas

At the end of last year we ran a 10 DAY NEW YEAR INTENSIVE to start the new year off in a wonderful way.

A program where we shared the practice of yoga, good habits, and 10 key lessons that link in with goal setting & yoga philosophy that we've learned over the past decade as business owners. We shared tips and strategies that have helped us achieve some of our yoga, personal, lifestyle & business goals over that time and presented it in a way that would inspire others to refocus for the year ahead.

We were absolutely blown away with the response & feedback we received from those that took part in the program. Many of the participants said it was 'life changing'.

We are still receiving positive feedback more than 9 months later on how this program helped many of the students set their personal & professional direction for the year with amazing results. 

We have already received many requests to run this program again. And just quietly - we are super excited to begin the year in this way again as it is a deeply enriching experience as a teacher to watch your students get so fired up about life balance that they make really big changes for the better. (We'll be sharing some of the amazing stories with you over the coming weeks).

This intensive is designed to help you navigate where you'd like to focus your energy for the year ahead & create a physical & emotional mind map to show you how to get there.

We are planning an even better & more comprehensive course with some surprises that you are going to LOVE and can't wait to start the year off in such a focused & wonderful way with great yogis like you.

So... because this is a once a year event - and because space is so limited, we wanted to give you a heads up on the dates and let you know that registrations will open for this amazing once a year event in the next couple of weeks so stay tuned.

We will be offering a very limited 26 studio places for this program as well as delivering the course online (ideal for those who are travelling or those who want to keep the practices to come back to throughout the year).

More details will be available very soon - so please SAVE THE DATE if you'd love to be part of this once a year offering.

 

Save the date!

10 Day Intensive :: January 1st - January 10th

In studio course with Deb Young:

6am-7.30am

 

What People are Saying About 10 Days of Tapas

Firstly, I wanted to say a huge thank you for putting this course together and sharing it with everyone. I know it must have been a lot of hard work but it was such an amazing experience and something you should be very proud of.  

~ Katrina (online version)

 

I feel amazing coming out of the intensive. Rejuvenated. I am feeling very healthy and in a great headspace. To have thought about my goals for the year, things I would like to achieve, things to let go of, has been the very best thing for me. I don't remember ever starting a year this way. This is MY year! 

~ Kat (studio version)

 

deb young younga yoga studio

About Deb Young

Deb is the co-founder of Younga Yoga Studio, foodie, keen business chick, mother of two and holds a Honours Degree in Physical & Health Education. She has been teaching yoga for the past 10 years and studied various traditions (Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Anusara, Vipassana). Deb has completed numerous teacher trainings & led retreats both here and internationally.

Deb is also the creator of Stretch & Glow - An online yoga & lifestyle oasis for busy mums in the comfort of their own home.

Deb is stoked to be able to bring together the teachings of yoga philosophy, dynamic vinyasa, daily pranayama & goal setting techniques in a way that will inspire you to seek better life balance heading into 2016.

 

 

Amazing Coconut Quinoa Porridge

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This is the perfect porridge for the change of seasons, when you want something warming, but not too heavy.

THE SATISFYING COMBINATION OF PROTEIN PACKED QUINOA, WITH CREAMY COCONUT, TART BERRIES & SWEETNESS OF BANANAS WILL HAVE YOU WONDERING WHY YOU EVER BOTHER WITH COMMERCIAL CEREALS THAT LEAVE YOU HUNGRY AN HOUR LATER.

Here is Australia it is right on the start of Spring. We're on the East Coast and the weather has a way of lulling us into a false sense of security around this time of year by offering up beautiful sunny days and hint that summer is right around the corner. The result is that even though we're starting to see the start of summer fruits like juicy mangoes slowly come on - the mornings are still fresh and body slow to wake up.

I taught yoga this morning - my regular 6am class and it was such a struggle to move. It's not unusual for me to feel this way first thing in the morning (my tips for those of you that are trying to establish a morning yoga or workout routine is to have all your things laid out the night before ready to go, then all you have to do is set the alarm and get your feet on the floor). But this morning it was particularly tough. The sun was shining, but everyone felt stiff and slow to move. Even at the end of the practice my body didn't have its usual zing and I'm pretty sure a few of the other early risers felt the same. 

I think this is a common way to feel around the change of the seasons. Yesterday I was in Spring cleaning mode for sure but I spent all day cooking and cleaning and thought that what I really need today is a day working at home, where I can get my bare feet on the deck and some sunshine on my skin. A slow purposefully productive day instead of a day of 'busy'.

Enter this wonderfully creamy, grounding & wholesome breakfast.

Quinoa is packed full of protein and you've probably had it as part of a salad before but did you know that you can also make an amazing porridge with the grain? Although its more expensive than oats - you'll probably find you don't need as much to 'feel full'.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp. vanilla powder or the seeds scraped from 1 vanilla bean
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 pint (8 oz./250 g) blueberries
  • 1 Tbs. coconut chips or flakes
  • 1 Tbs. crushed pistachios or sunflower seeds
  • 2 tsp. chia seeds
  • 2 tsp. of honey / maple
  • 2 tsp. coconut sugar / maple
  • 1 banana, peeled and sliced
  • Almond milk for serving

Directions:

In a saucepan over high heat, combine the quinoa, 1 cup of the coconut milk, the 1/2 cup water, 1/2 tsp. of the vanilla paste / essence, and the cinnamon. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover the pan and simmer until most of the liquid is absorbed and the quinoa is tender, about 12 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in 2 tsp. of the honey and the remaining 1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) coconut milk.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the blueberries, 2 Tbs. water, remaining 1/2 tsp. vanilla powder or the remaining half of the vanilla seeds, and the remaining 1 tsp. honey. Cook, stirring, until the berries release their juices, about 6 minutes.

In a small bowl, stir together the coconut chips, pistachios, chia seeds and coconut sugar.

To serve, spoon the hot quinoa into bowls. Drizzle with the almond butter and spoon the warm blueberries over the porridge. Top with the banana and sprinkle with the coconut chip mixture. Serve almond milk alongside. Serves 2 - 4

Recipe from Bluestone Lane Collective Cafe, New York.