What do you like about this time?
I’ve come to love the early mornings, but in truth my habit of getting up early in the morning was as hard for me as anyone else – I found it was the only time in the day I could have to myself with work and family commitments – so I’ve just pushed through, and now I wouldn’t miss it. It’s a peaceful time and living such an urban existence I feel in touch with the changing seasons. The fresh air, the light in the sky and the birds peeping as Spring is upon us are almost magical. For months it was just me in the studio, but now I have some lovely buddies who also come on Wednesday mornings.
What do you normally practice?
When I come in on Wednesdays I often do the Immune Sequence or Emotional Stability Sequence both of which offer a kind of recovery, or a protection from the effects of everyday life and everything else I have to do each day. They’re my survival strategy, and I just take it as it comes, often surprising myself with the energy and strength the yoga gives me that I would have missed if I’d stayed home. I’ve had three surgeries over the last eighteen months following a breast cancer diagnosis. Following each surgery I have used the open times to do the Yoga Therapy Sequences given to me by Stephanie Quirk. I believe that without yoga I would not have recovered my strength and range of movement nearly so well. These practices have also given me consistent, ongoing access to the benefits of yoga even following surgery and a way to resolve or work with physical problems in my body. I change it up though. Last week I came in and did beautiful Petra’s Backbend sequence – and I loved it.
What do you find the difference is for you between coming in and doing a practice, and coming to a class?
Our teachers know so much more than we do – when I practice alone I work within the limitations of my own knowledge of yoga. When I come to a class, our teacher guides us into yoga using their knowledge and experience. I love all the different ways that we can be taken into the asanas to learn more about how to access them, and the energy of a big busy class, discovering the sequence that the teacher has developed, that they make us really work hard – and the camaraderie of the other students.
Do you attend any other Open practice times at The Centre?
Yes, I try to come on Saturday and Sunday afternoons if I can’t get to a class. I love having the flexibility of so many times to practice, whether it is a class or an open practice, and I think it is very generous of Simon and Hasu to entrust the studio to us all in this way!