The Welsh Government have announced from Monday 13th July 2020, organised activities can take place outdoors, including team sports and other activities, such as dance and fitness classes. Activities must be limited to 30 people, and a risk assessment must be taken to keep everyone safe.More
Posts by Geraldine Norris:
In my opinion online yoga sessions are here to stay for the immediate advised ‘physical-distancing’ period and beyond. Remote yoga sessions provide an opportunity for us to connect with our preferred yoga teacher, friends and familiar yoga class personalities, access a pre-recorded session at a time to suit ourselves or work with a teacher in another geographical area, possibly in another part of the world.
I long for the day when I can return to ‘face-to-face’ yoga teaching but in the meantime I’ve gleaned some tips from the British Wheel of Yoga guidelines to enhance your experience when accessing remote yoga session:
- Allow 15 mins prior to the session to begin with, to allow enough time to get set up properly, be comfortable and in the right place. You may need to adjust your lighting so your teacher can see you clearly. After a few sessions it will not take so long to set up.
- Think about connecting your laptop to your TV via an HDMI cable to give you a bigger screen. If you want to do this, have a trial run beforehand to make sure you can do it easily on the day.
- Opting for gallery view will bring images of all participants onto your screen and you will have more of the experience of a group class. The downside is that the image of your teacher will be smaller. Depending on the size of your screen this might not be practical. Experiment and see which works best for you.
- The main image will switch to whichever participant makes a sound so use speaker view and keep muted once started, unless you are in a group chanting or philosophy discussion. In a physical session you can use the chat button on whichever online platform you are using if you need to speak to the teacher.
- Arrange your screen so that your teacher can see as much of you as possible and then you won’t have to keep moving the screen or adjusting yourself. You will probably need to be a minimum of 6 feet away from your device.
- Make sure you have plenty of room to move your arms and legs.
- Your teacher will let you know in advance what props you will need; make sure you have everything ready beforehand, including water.
- Don’t have any music in the background because it will distort and/or be in competition with your voice if you do need to speak to the teacher.
- Dress as you would if you were attending a face to face yoga class. This will eliminate the possibility of any embarrassing wardrobe malfunctions! Remember, other people in the class will be able to see you on their screens.
- Laugh – it’s a new experience so don’t worry about being perfect. Be human, be authentic, be you!
If you’d like to join one of Aura Yoga with Geri’s yoga sessions via ‘Zoom’ please complete and submit the online Health Questionnaire on my website www.aurayoga.co.uk and acknowledge your understanding of the remote learning disclaimer.
If you are a new student to my classes, you will undertake a ‘one-off’, brief online assessment interview. It is advisable to bring to the attention of your teacher, before each yoga session, anything that may impede your yoga practice, in relation to your health. This is vital for your wellbeing, safety, enjoyment and to maximise the benefit of your yoga experience.
I always advise the principle of ‘Svadhyaya’, a Sankskrit term which means ‘Self-Study’, be observed throughout every yoga session and in every thought, word and deed we undertake.
We practice each asana (yoga posture) at least three times, where I encourage the student to observe their body and breath in each posture, breathing exercise, yoga technique, as it provides such instant and reliable feedback. For example – “Where do I feel this most? Why that may be? What can I do to improve the quality of the movement/experience? Which side of the body moves more freely? Why is this may be the case? ……”
I always suggest any modifications to suit specific medical conditions or injury, throughout the session or have advised each participant, beforehand of prohibitions and precautions to apply to their yoga experience.
The aim of each of my yoga classes is to provide a well-balanced blend of hatha yoga asana (posture), prananyama (breath control), relaxation, fun and laughter to balance and harmonise each student’s energy system, resulting in a feeling of enhanced wellbeing – physically, mentally and emotionally.
Why not join us via ‘Zoom’ soon?
AURA YOGA WITH GERI QUIZ via Zoom
Friday 1st May 2020 7.15 – 8.30pm BST
I will be hosting a Virtual Quiz Night via Zoom on Friday 1st May 2020 to raise money for Hospice of the Valleys.
In the spirit of #GoYellowForHospice, perhaps wear something yellow to support The Hospice of the Valleys (suggested donation £1).
Please pay by BACS or Paypal to my account and I will tally and forward the final total to the Hospice.
Prizes will be delivered or posted to winner and runners up.
Other members of your household are welcome to join in too.
Please contact me for meeting ID and passcode. I will email or post quiz on whatsapp yoga groups at least 30 minutes before start.
Many thanks for your ongoing support.🙏🏼
I hope you and your loved ones are safe and well.
Hatha Yoga and Meditation with Geri is available via ‘Zoom’ during this social distancing period.
Just download the Zoom app or visit Zoom.us.
Pre-recorded sessions will also be available soon on my YouTube channel.
Monday 19.00 – 20.00 hours BST
Wednesday 9.30 – 11.00 hours BST
Saturday 11.00 – 12.00 hours BST
Meditation Sunday 14.00 15.00 hours BST
(Prior Meditation experience is recommended as we sit for 30-45 minutes. Please bring a notebook and pen to record your experience.)
Please set out your yoga mat in a clear, safe space, dress appropriately, ensure the room is well ventilated and you are hydrated. Always remember to observe and listen to your body, adjusting postures and practice to suit you.
If you have not joined my yoga sessions before, please complete a British Wheel of Yoga Health Questionnaire here before your first session. For further information do visit https://www.bwy.org.uk/covid-19/ to read the disclaimer and view guidelines.
Please let me know before class if this is your first yoga class or if you are not confident about your experience and/or yoga ability. We can also have a chat about any health issues that may impede your yoga practice.
Cost is £5 per session via BACS or Paypal, or £50 per month unlimited access to all sessions. If you have difficulty paying please contact me.
These sessions are free to NHS staff and keyworkers.
Hope to see you soon on ‘Zoom’.
In view of the current COVID 19 Coronavirus guidelines in place I have set up a weekly yoga class schedule via ‘Zoom’. To join ‘Zoom’ visit www.zoom.us or download the ‘app’ from your ‘app’ store.
These Hatha Yoga classes are suitable for existing students of mine and are for mixed ability.
Meeting ID and Passcodes for each session are issued via email or text message to students who email me and complete the necessary documentation, provided by the British Wheel of Yoga, my governing body and insurance provider.
I intend to offer Meditation, Chair Yoga and Yoga for ‘Hot’ Women sessions via Zoom, subject to demand. I also hope to provide Facebook Live and You Tube wellbeing sessions.
Aura Homoeopathy Clinic is currently open for business offering online consultations by appointment only via What’s App, Messenger, Skype and Zoom. Please contact me for a no obligation 15 minutes chat to find out more.
Homoeopathy can be very helpful in treating the signs and symptoms of Inflammatory Bowel Disease by assisting the sufferer’s vital force (body’s unique intelligence) to restore balance, harmony and wellbeing – our natural Homeostasis.
I know only too well the difficulties of living with Ulcerative Colitis after seemingly developing the ‘dis-ease’ from contracting amoebic dysentery in my early twenties.
According to the NHS website “Ulcerative colitis is a long-term condition where the colon (the large intestine or bowel) and rectum (the end of the bowel where the stools are stored) become inflamed. Small ulcers can develop on the colon’s lining, can bleed and produce pus.
The main symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis are:
- Recurring diarrhoea, which may contain blood, mucus and/or pus.
- Tummy pain
- Needing to empty your bowels frequently.
- You may also experience extreme tiredness (fatigue), loss of appetite and weigh loss.
The severity of the symptoms varies, depending on how much of the rectum and colon is inflamed and how severe the inflammation is. For some people, the condition has a significant impact on their everyday lives.
Symptoms of a flare-up
Some people may go for weeks or months with very mild symptoms, or none at all (remission), followed by periods where the symptoms are particularly troublesome (flare-ups or relapse).
During a flare-up, some people with ulcerative colitis also experience symptoms elsewhere in their body.
For example, some people develop:
- Painful and swollen joints (arthritis)
- Mouth ulcers
- Areas of painful, red and swollen skin
- Irritated and red eyes
In severe cases, defined as having to empty your bowels 6 or more times a day, additional symptoms may include:
- Shortness of breath
- A fast or irregular heartbeat
- A high temperature (fever)
- Blood in your stools becoming more obvious
In most people, no specific trigger for flare-ups is identified, although a gut infection can occasionally be the cause. Stress is also thought to be a potential factor.
When to seek medical advice:
You should see a GP as soon as possible if you have symptoms of ulcerative colitis and you have not been diagnosed with the condition. They can arrange blood or stool sample tests to help determine what may be causing your symptoms. If necessary, they can refer you to hospital for further tests.
It is estimated around 1 in every 420 people living in the UK has ulcerative colitis. This amounts to around 146,000 people.
IBD or IBS?
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a term mainly used to describe 2 conditions that cause inflammation of the gut (gastrointestinal tract).
- Ulcerative colitis
- Crohn’s disease
IBD should not be confused with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) which is a different condition and requires different treatment.” [www.nhs.uk]
What works for me?
Thankfully over thirty years on I’m currently symptom free, not reliant on prescription drugs and enjoying life to the full. I contribute this to a healthy lifestyle, avoiding triggers – certain foods and stress, good nutrition, meditation, yoga and homoeopathy.
It’s not simply a case of one remedy to match a disease name. A professional homoeopath, such as myself will closely ascertain how the symptoms are expressed by each individual and match the homoeopathic prescription accordingly.
In homoeopathy we look at the patient’s physical symptoms, emotional state, lifestyle factors and family history as these all assist in matching the Homoeopathic remedy to the individual.
Please contact me directly if you’d like to make an appointment or take advantage of a no obligation, up to 15 minute telephone conversation or online chat to discuss.
The charity Crohn’s & Colitis UK are a brilliant source of information and support for sufferers.
We’ve just completed our second 5 week course with a group of 9 enthusiastic participants, many who were new to meditation, and it was absolutely amazing. I consider it a privilege and blessing to facilitate these sessions. We use a variety of techniques to assist our meditation journey and the time spent in meditation has evolved from 10 minute to 40 minute sessions with gradual ease. It’s a very interactive experience with the opportunity for us all to share our experiences (if we wish), plus record our personal experience in our notebooks.
I base my teaching on my own meditation experience over the past four decades, the ancient yogic texts of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras, Hatha Yoga Pradipika, Bhagavad Gita and the works of great teachers such as Swami Satchidananada Saraswati, TKV Desikachar, BKS Iyengar, to name but a few, and my wonderful students.
The word Yoga comes from the Sanskrit word Yuj – ‘to unite’ and ultimately means ‘Union’. Our own English word, Yoke, is derived from this root. The Bhagavad Gita mentions yoga and union “In this union of Yoga there is liberty: a deliverance from the oppression of pain. This Yoga must be followed with faith, with a strong and courageous heart.” [Chapter 6 (23)]
Yoga is totally holistic and incorporates harmony of body, mind and spirit. The under lying purpose of the different aspects of the practice of yoga is to reunite the individual self (Jiva) with the Absolute or pure consciousness (Brahman). In the Yoga Sutras, Patanjali tells us that the practice of yoga will train the mind to reach a state of perfect harmony “Yoga is the control of thought-waves in the mind.” Chapter 1(2).
Raja is one of the sub-divisions of yoga it means ‘Royal’, the highest path of yoga and refers to the path of meditation. It is closely linked with Hatha, ultimately aimed at mastering the mind, but realising that to reach the spiritual goal the physical body must be fit and efficient. In his foreword in the ‘Hatha Yoga Pradipika’,
BKS Iyengar suggests that “A steady and mindful inbreath and outbreath minimises the fluctuations and helps to stabilise the mind. Once this steadiness has been established through Pranayama, the senses can be withdrawn from their objects. This is Pratyahara. Pratyahara must be established before Dhyana (concentration) can take place. Dhyana flows into Dharana (meditation) and Dharana into Samadhi (enlightenment).”
Meditation is very simple, it’s like enjoying a date with yourself. If I can do it than anyone can as I’m one of the busiest bees I know with an extremely restless mind by nature. Probably that’s what attracted me to Yoga in the first place. Yoga and Yoga Meditation have and are my saving grace.
In the classes I run we sit on chairs, blocks, yoga mats, against the wall, anything goes, as long as we have an upright head, neck and spine, so no lying down (sorry), preferably with eyes open but you will soon learn what works best for you each time you sit to meditate as practice is key. I provide a menu of meditation techniques we test them and then you work with what suits you best. Home practice is so important and is the key to success along with self-discipline.
The group have kindly given me permission to share some of their comments and experiences.
“I drove home still with that beautiful peace that surrounded me throughout meditation. I ate dinner slow as that was how it felt was right. So calm all evening. Thank you.x”
“Thank you so much for our meditation sessions; it and the group has brought much needed rebalancing and resetting over the last few weeks.”
“I’ve really enjoyed our classes and regular meditation is definitely making me a calmer person. I’m so grateful for the experience I’ve gained at our classes. Thank you everyone.x”
“Thank you so much Geri for our lovely meditation sessions. I’m not naturally a calm person but totally agree that I too had one, if not the best, calm night’s sleep last night that I’ve had for a long time…. Thank you everyone as the group does make it such a lovely environment.”
“I have really enjoyed our meditation. I feel really relaxed after them. I think you should do some tapes or an app. I’m looking forward to the next session.”
“I really enjoyed the sessions. Thanks for teaching us a new skill that benefits our minds and bodies. I now realise how my “me” time is so important to me in this busy, stressful world. Thanks Geri. Keep up the excellent work.”
“You’re amazing Geri. I think you should do YouTube meditation videos….xx Then your world will open and everyone can share your ‘guruness’.x”
“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the meditation classes, there’s such a lovely atmosphere and such a nice group to share the experience with. I’ve benefitted from the meditation, I always sleep better afterwards and feel calm and relaxed. I love Monday’s! Look forward to starting again in the New Year and to Geri’s meditation videos on YouTube. You can do it Geri, you’re brilliant!”
“I didn’t realise how affected I would be with regular meditation. Thank you my yoga guru.xxx”
Wow, so many wonderful experiences and comments – thank you.
A Guru is high praise indeed and something I aspire to. According to www.Wikipedia.org. “Guru is a Sanskrit term for a “teacher, guide, expert, or master” of certain knowledge or field.”
I lack the confidence to produce videos, podcasts and other on-line tutorials as the more I learn the more I realise there is to learn! Yoga teaching and practice nourishes my soul, quenches my thirst for knowledge, helps me to develop confidence, so one day soon you may just see me on a computer and or hear me on a downloadable app!
The next Yoga Meditation course is scheduled to start in January 2020. Why not join us?
Yoga for ‘Hot’ Women is a Hatha Yoga practice specifically tailored to support, nourish and empower women through some of the many symptoms encountered at Peri-menopause, Menopause and Beyond.
This is a time of change, transformation, a metamorphosis as major shifts occur in our endocrine system, often a journey of self-discovery, leading to life-changing events. A time to slow-down, take stock and reflect on who we truly are and what we want from life.
“First find rest … If the body wants to slow down, you have to allow it to slow down for a while.” Geeta S. Iyengar author of ‘Yoga: A Gem for Women’.
I’ve been practicing yoga for four decades and have adapted my own yoga practice during chronic illness, grief, pregnancy, postpartum, as a busy working mother and now at peri-menopause.
Like ‘Jemima Shore Investigates’ I love to investigate, explore, watch, listen, read, learn and have gleaned so much knowledge, tried and tested various methods of yoga practice, plus other coping strategies that help me at this stage in my life. I’m keen to share my knowledge and experience, as a yoga teacher, practitioner, homoeopath and a woman, confident it will help to empower, nourish and support other women.
“Take advantage of the clarity of vision that is the gift of menopause and use that gift to let the second half of your life truly be your own.” Christiane Northrup, M.D., ‘The Wisdom of Menopause: Creating Physical and Emotional Health and Healing During the Change’
I’ve become increasingly more aware of the many menopausal symptoms, approximately forty, and the impact they have on so many women who are suffering, often in silence, wondering what the hell is happening to them!
Yoga practice can help reduce some of the more undesirable effects of hormonal changes by helping to restore balance and harmony to the body and mind.
You will learn a variety of techniques to help cope with some of the many symptoms that can occur e.g. irregular and/or heavy periods, hot flushes, sweats, pelvic-floor issues, pains in the joints, mood swings, sleeplessness, anxiety, depression, panic-attacks, absentmindedness, headaches, palpitations, bone health, fatigue, loss of libido, vaginal atrophy, etc.
“You can use hot flashes as a personal wake-up call: “Wake-up! Something powerful is happening!” Use this changing time before it passes to access and study your old behaviours, sweat out what no longer works – poisons and toxins you have accumulated in your lifetime – and to let go of old hatreds and resentments. The more you use your hot flashes, the more skilful you become in transforming energy, and thus your life.” Ana Forrest, Yoga Teacher
We will also explore the importance of nutrition, exercise, relaxation, mindfulness, self-care and a variety of treatment options. The group will share their experiences and coping strategies so we can learn from each other which can be very supportive. We will also laugh, be sad, confused, hot, anxious, depressed sometimes. I will teach you to recognise, acknowledge and accept these emotions as part of the process as we journey through life. There is light at the end of the tunnel, even if you sometimes feel lost in the dark.
Do come and join us for Yoga for ‘Hot’ Women on Thursday 6.00-7.00pm at Plas Mawr Community Centre, Blackwood, for the next 5 weeks or for 3 weeks from next Tuesday Noon-1.00pm at Studio 54, Blackwood.
For more information check out my Classes page.