I had the pleasure of teaching yoga at the above event recently and was very impressed. The staff training organiser Claire Manson, a triathlete, told me “the day was part of a primary cluster plan and something that was necessary across the schools to help manage workload and improve staff wellbeing”.
I arrived at the venue, a beautiful old red brick building with stone steps, grand tiled entrances with traditional doors, trimmed with brass and high ceilings. It was a cold frosty but beautifully sunny day. The communal meeting point was the school hall and this was where the inspirational talks took place. There were two speeches; the first on conquering Mount Everest and the other on the value of teaching both of which were extremely motivational.
The various workshops available during the day were focused on the connection between a healthy body and mind, offering low and higher impact exercise sessions. These included mindfulness, African drumming, yoga, pilates, zumba, football, water polo, golf, art therapy, along with nutritional advice (there was Italian Cookery on offer) and an on-site chiropractor. There was even a Staff Cinema showing ‘Eat, Pray, Love’!
Some of the comments on the feedback from the day include:
Truly wonderful day thank you.
I will give myself more time to just be me!
It allowed me to relax and de-stress during the working week so that I enjoyed my weekend more fully. Also planning on taking up Yoga again!
My theme in the 60 minute Yoga session was ‘Yoga a Science for Life not a Sport’. We explored the connection between our mind, breath and body, with time to contemplate what exactly we experienced in each yoga technique using Svadhyaya (self-study), a Niyama (virtuous observance).
I used asana, mudra, bandha, pranayama, Ayurveda, kiya kriya and relaxation as we enjoyed being bathed in the winter sunshine warming and energising us through the tall glass windows. Everyone in the group were responsive, appeared to enjoy the experience and the energy shift was tangible.
When I started practising yoga almost 4 decades ago it was viewed very much as a ‘fringe/hippie’ thing to do. I’ve always been an active person enjoying cycling, running, martial arts, scuba diving, dancing and many other activities.
I’m overjoyed to see the ‘shift’ in how these activities have and continue to be integrated into our lives. It would be great to see more of these ‘Wellbeing’ days run by organisations to raise awareness and allow individuals to sample the many things on offer to cultivate their joy, health and wellbeing of themselves and life!