Yoga in the Garden
I love practicing Scaravelli inspired yoga outside in the garden, in the open air, listening to the birds squabbling and chattering. Whilst the garden looks peaceful and inviting, it has its distractions. The buses, for instance, which arrive and depart just beyond the walls in the street outside.
Sound can be distracting but it's also a great teacher.
I've found it helpful to treat noises like a piece of music I'm listening for the first time. Noticing the volume, tone, pitch and rythm and seeing if I can avoid labelling it as intrinsically pleasant or not.
Simply to notice it as sounds, passing across the screen of my practice.
And then there are my cats, who are a bit more challenging. If they're not climbing on/up me, they're demanding their share of the mat or food. Or a stroke. Or all of the above.
What is Scaravelli Inspired Yoga?
The style of yoga Catherine teaches has been inspired by the pioneering approach of Vanda Scaravelli. This is a gentle yet demanding form of Hatha yoga, which focuses on developing core strength through releasing tension and creating length in the spine.
Scaravelli inspired yoga is a stress-free yoga that benefits everyone. Classes are suitable for all ages and all levels, from beginners to those with many years of experience. Regardless of your level of fitness, you will discover a longer, stronger and more flexible spine, a calmer mind, and begin to enjoy increased energy and ease of movement.
It uses the breath and gravity to allow the spine to unfold like a wave, allowing the uninhibited opening and energising of the whole body. As Vanda explains in the opening page of her book “Awakening the Spine”:
“There is a division in the centre of our back, where the spine moves simultaneously in two opposite directions: from the waist down towards the legs and the feet, which are pulled by gravity, and from the waist upwards, through the top of the head, lifting us up freely”.
Vanda’s teachings are miraculously simple. She encouraged her students to do less, feel more. To unwind, release unnecessary tension, and begin to simply be. “You must only undo. The more you undo, the more you are and the more things come to you. Don’t try to become; you are.”