Saturday, May 23, 2009

Yoga to Beat the Blues

Last weekend, in an attempt to be nice to myself and deal with all this stress, I went to a yoga retreat at the Mount Madonna Center a couple of hours away from me -- something I have always wanted to do.

The teacher was Amy Weintraub, author of Yoga for Depression. Even though depression isn't my main emotional problem, I liked the emphasis on how yoga can help you manage your mood so decided to sign up and give it a try.
Amy is one of those people who has learned from yoga masters and created her own synthesis, which she calls LifeForce Yoga. It seems to draw a lot from Kundalini, with an emphasis on breathing and chanting sounds while doing poses. It is indeed very calming and centering.

Amy was a great teacher and I enjoyed the session. Her own personal story of overcoming severe depresssion through yoga (which evidently she tells in detail in her book) is quite compelling. Today she is an excellent teacher who travels the world teaching, is the picture of glowing health, and had brought with her a very handsome male companion, so it appears she has built a very positive life for herself, all of which made me say to myself "You go girl!"
I picked up her DVDs to help vary my home yoga practice. LifeForce Yoga to Beat the Blues Level One and Level 2.

I liked the Mount Madonna Center too, a peaceful setting and simple but nice facilities. A bit of a problem with the food though. It's great that they are vegetarian, but it was hard for me to find enough to eat given that I don't eat wheat or dairy, and am trying to keep things low carb in order to fight my Candida. I need to lose a few pounds anyway, but I was really wishing for some more vegetables and felt lightheaded at a couple of points due to not eating enough.

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