In this series we find and talk things that help you create the space you need to grow in-between the busy life of the go getters throughout the community. Creating inspiration and actions for people to use in the pursuit of growth.
We asked how many of you prefer eating in or taking out, 76% of you said you prefer to make your own meal at home and dine in, and 26% said you’d rather take out! Well we’ve got you covered for both. We’ve got some more ideas for simple things you can make at home, inspired by our very own yogi Kiera. Alternatively, you can check out our favourite local businesses who are still offering takeout services. Lets support each other and our community!
If you didn’t catch Kiera’s Yogi Takeover on our Instagram on Saturday, here are a few of Kiera’s favourites what she’s been cooking up over the weekend! Have a look and give them a try!
Smoothie Breakfast Pots
Put the avocado, mango and banana through a blender to create your smoothie. Choose your mixed berries or base to put in the bottom of your bowl, pour the smoothie on top, and finish with granola, or extra fruit and nuts of your choice!
Simple Side Salad
Super simple and super good for you! Chop together raw carrot, cabbage, onion, pepper and kale. For the dressing mix together greek yoghurt, Dijon mustard and fresh lemon. Top with crushed walnuts and dried fruits!
What are your dine in favourites? Let us know in the comments below!
For any of you wondering what’s still available as that weekend takeout treat, here’s some local businesses that are still delivering. Why not show them your support and take a night off from cooking?
Wild & Wild
For all our Vegans out there, Wild & Wild have launched their new menu. It looks amazing and even though we can’t get there to try it out, it is all available for takeaway! Dine out whilst dining in! We love this local cafe’s ethos prioritising plant based and sustainability, and providing for the community though this rough time. If you are struggling to get your supplies during isolation, supermarkets sold out, or you need to stay at home, check out their One Box! Delivered straight to your door, contact free, you can top up your fruit and veg selection, receive (our favourite) oat milk, toilet paper and even freshly made smoothies!
To view their menu, check out the One Box option and read all about what they are doing through Covid 19 click HERE
Health Gainz Kitchen
Recommended by our very own Natalia, high protein healthy meals to support your home workouts, delivered straight to your door! With 10 meals delivered, you wont have to worry about meal prep all week! More time for online yoga classes and Netflix series..
For orders and more information on their prep packages check out their Instagram below!
Missing out on your daily juice fix? Us too! Luckily The Garden in Hale are still delivering all your favourite healthy juices and smoothies! Keep your health in check and your nutrient intake high with these super tasty juice cleanse packages. Contact free delivery straight to your door!
Looking for a few other ways to keep the cardio up whilst at home? Looking for something a little more high impact than yoga? Then check out this list to see our favourite ways of keeping moving during lockdown.
Keep moving. Keep growing.
Grab a Partner!
Because things are better when we’re together. If you are self isolating with others at home, perhaps a partner or family member, you’re going to want to get them involved on this one. Give this partner home workout a try.
Partner Hip thrusts – Sit your partner across your hips, use the sofa to prop your upper back and shoulders, squeeze the glutes and lift! Pause at the top and squeeze to add extra tension.
Push Up High fives – Do sets of push ups at the same time, between each push up release opposite arms, tap hands and plant the hand back down. Push up again and tap opposite hands. Keep going until you cant go anymore!
Sit up and pass – Lie down face to face with toes touching, completing sit ups whilst passing an object between you. It can be anything from a tin of soup, a toilet roll, your dog, a ball. Use whatever you can get your hands on!
Piggyback squats – Proceed with caution, may cause extreme laughter and a fall to the ground. Having your partner on your back, keeping the back straight and core engaged, see how many squats you can complete.
Do what you can, take precautions but have fun! Laughter is a workout too right?
Dance Like Nobody’s Watching!
Who said workouts had to be boring. Find your favourite playlist of songs, turn it up and dance around your kitchen. Did you know..? Dance has been scientifically proven to improve heart health, reduce risk of depression, and improve coordination and balance! Plus, there’s no way you can do it wrong. Be free, get creative, and let go! Twenty minutes swinging around to your favourite songs, we dare you not to feel happier!
Have a look at these Spotify playlists for some songs bound to get you moving! (Just type them in the search)
– Dancehall Throwback – Party Hits 2000-2020 – 80’s Hits – Bottomless Brunch – Lets Get Funky
What’s your go to dance track? Let us know in the comments!
Use What You Have
Are you missing your gym sessions and need some weight training and resistance in your life? Give this video a try from our neighbours at UP Fitness Cheshire and see how they’re keeping in shape whilst staying at home. Grab your water bottles and your resistance bands and join Personal Trainer Ash Tancock for a full body workout you can do in the comfort of your home or garden! Ash demonstrates each exercise, and check the caption for sets and reps.
You can follow Up Fitness Cheshire at @up_north_pt for more live workouts, content and Q&A’s with the trainers.
Why not have a go at setting up your own home circuit? One for all the family! Set up different stations around the house and garden each containing a different exercise. Set a timer, complete one set in each area and see how many rounds you can do! Here’s some ideas of fun fitness ideas the whole family can have a go at.
– Skipping Rope – Push Ups – Sit Ups – Pistol Squats – Burpees – Lunges – Squats/Jump Squats – Single leg glute bridges
Need some inspiration? Have a look at the video below for a full body, low weight resistance circuit. Top tip! Play around with slow reps and add pauses to increase tension. Need more ideas? Check out Personal Trainer James Griffiths at @jamesgriffpt or you can check out James’s website HERE to find out more information about all things fitness, nutrition and transformation!
Give them a go! Let us know how you get on, and don’t forget to tag us in your home workout videos!
Finding comfort in the chaos can be easier said than done. As our lives become mainly online based, our screen time might be through the roof as we rely on our phone screens to connect us through this tough time. If you start to feel overwhelmed and need a moment for yourself, put the technology to one side, and go old school with our favourite activities to find your mindful moment.
And as we know, with the majority of shops being closed right now, remember you can still support your favourite stores by shopping online! We’ve provided handy links to our favourites, if one of these ideas is calling out to you but you don’t quite have what you need.
Piece by Piece
One of lifes simpler satisfactions, inserting the last piece of jigsaw into its place completing the finished picture. A cosy cottage, a New York skyline, dogs playing cards round a table, or whatever you’re into! Immerse yourself in an (annoyingly) addictive yet relaxing pastime and improve your visual perception, memory and critical thinking. Now, which piece goes where? Get the family involved! Need a way to keep the kids occupied for an hour? Get them to join in! Set them simple mindful challenges such as finding all the edge pieces, finding pieces of a certain colour, or pieces containing a certain object. This will give them something to focus on and give you a helping hand to find the piece you need!
Check out top Jigsaw brand Ravensburger online HERE. For a wide range of children and adult friendly puzzles!
Colour yourself happy
Something you maybe haven’t done since you were a child, but remember how the hours would pass by in a blissful blur of concentrated focus, as you tried to stay between the lines of a brand new colouring book? Its a favourite child hood pastime but how does it benefit me now? Well did you know..? There have been several studies to prove the health benefits of colouring including reduced blood pressure and lowering stress and cortisol levels. Expressing yourself creatively helps to clear the mind, as it tunes in to focus on the task at hand. Calming the mind of worries and bringing you into the present moment, it has similar effects to your meditation practice. So if you are missing the mindful benefits of your yoga practice, why not leave your phone in another room. Give yourself a half hour break away from social media and news headlines, and express your inner child, we won’t tell if you go out the lines!
For gorgeous intricate designs and patterns to suit any theme you might fancy check out the great selection at Waterstones HERE.
Mindful Mind Games
No we’re not talking about messing with someone’s head. We’re talking word searches, sudokus and crosswords! You know we are all about growth here, so why not work on growing your vocabulary whilst keeping your brain active! A great way to develop patience to overcome challenges and persevere through frustration, while enhancing mental sharpness and problem solving.
Check out The Works HERE, for budget books to keep you busy on a rainy day.
Bake the World A Better Place
Something we all know and love, Food. With the mad rush of people buying bread in bulk, have a go at making your own! Relish in the feeling of creating nourishing food for yourself from scratch, evoking each of the senses for a true mindful experience. Its a sensory experience. What do you feel? Think about the texture and the movement you create with your hands. What can you smell? Our sense of smell can literally transport us to a different time or place. What do you hear? Become aware of the sounds created around you, the perfect crackle of a crispy bread crust. And most importantly how does it taste! Its so much more rewarding to eat when you worked through the process of making it. Other ideas for simple bakes are cupcakes, flapjacks and brownies!
Check out our previous blog post on Store cupboard cooking HERE, we think a fresh home made loaf would go perfectly with the Saucy Bean Baked Egg recipe!
(If shopping for ingredients, shop mindfully. Remember to only get what you need, keep your distance from others and share a smile with the staff! Spread love within your community 🙂 )
Possibly one of the best forms of self care we could possibly take during this time. Creating a regular journal practice.
If your new to Journaling and don’t know where to start or what to write, The Studio’s Donna recommends following these simple prompts from the book Calm: Calm the Mind, Change the World by Michael Acton Smith. Follow these journaling prompts to get you started;
1. What made me feel calm today? 2. What am I grateful for today? 3. What were the 3 highlights of today?
Let these be the foundational thoughts to guide you before going into deeper reflection. A journal is literally a space for you to ‘brain dump’ any stresses or worries, and put your thoughts and feelings on to paper. Often when we see our problems written down, it allows us to become less attached to them. This gives us space to workout either how to resolve them, or to let go of them. We can also use journaling to stay on top of our goals, dreams and desires, an important tool to stay motivated through hard times.
What are your favourite ways to create a mindful moment for yourself? Stay Well
We all have those tins in the cupboard that have been there since the beginning of time. Bought in moments when we promised ourselves we would cook more meals from scratch, but then struggled to ever find the time. Instead of putting more strain on the supermarkets by bulk buying, we encourage you to USE UP WHAT YOU HAVE. Get creative and see what you can put together.
If you need a helping hand we’ve found some recipes using staple, longlife cupboard items you might have lying around.
Tuna and Sundried Tomato Pasta Bake
Serves 6. Prep Time; 10 Minutes. Cook Time; 15 Minutes Ingredients 500g dried rigatoni (or any other short pasta) 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes 4 thyme sprigs, leaves only 300ml double cream 280g jar sundried tomatoes, drained and quartered 198g can no-added-salt sweetcorn, drained 3 x 120g cans tuna in spring water, drained 100g cheddar grated 50g parmasan grated
Heat the grill to its highest setting and put a large saucepan of salted water on to boil. Tip in the pasta and cook for 1 min less than the pack suggests.
Meanwhile, make the sauce by simmering the tomatoes in a pan with a little seasoning and the thyme for about 5 mins. Pour in the cream, stir and simmer for another 4-5 mins.
Drain the pasta, reserving a little of the cooking water, and tip back into the saucepan. Pour over the creamy tomato sauce, the sundried tomatoes, sweetcorn and tuna. Layer into a baking dish (ours was 22 x 29cm), scattering over the grated cheddar between layers. Sprinkle the Parmesan on top and put under the grill for 5 mins until bubbling and golden.
Saucy Bean Baked Eggs
Serves 2. Prep Time; 5 Minutes. Cook Time; 20 Minutes. Ingredients 2x 400g cans cherry tomatoes 400g can mixed bean salad drained 200g baby spinach 4 medium eggs 50g thinly sliced smoked ham torn Wholemeal rye bread to serve (optionl)
Tip the tomatoes and bean salad into an ovenproof frying pan or shallow flameproof casserole dish. Simmer for 10 mins, or until reduced. Stir in the spinach and cook for 5 mins more until wilted.
Heat the grill to medium. Make four indentations in the mixture using the back of a spoon, then crack one egg in each. Nestle the ham in the mixture, then grill for 4-5 mins, or until the whites are set and the yolks runny. Serve with rye bread, if you like.
1 tablespoon coconut oil 1 tablespoon minced ginger 1-2 cloves of garlic 1 shallot 100g green beans 100g white mushrooms 1/2 packet smoked tofu 600ml water/or vegetable broth 180g pasta 120ml canned coconut milk 60ml water 1 tablespoon potato starch 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce 1/2 teaspoon of paprika Salt and black pepper to taste
Heat the coconut oil on a medium/high heat, and add minced ginger, garlic and onion and sautee for 3-5 minutes. Add the beans, mushrooms and tofu and sautee for a further 3 minutes.
Pour in 600ml vegetable stock or water, and soy sauce. Add the paprika.
Add the pasta and stir to combine.
Reduce heat to medium and simmer for around 7 minutes
Taste and season with salt and pepper
Mix the potato starch and coconut milk and pour mixture in to the pan. Stir and simmer until the sauce thickens.
Cauliflower and Spinach Curry
1 tbsp olive oil 1 onion, thinly sliced 2 garlic cloves, crushed 3cm piece ginger, peeled and grated 2 tbsp medium tikka curry powder 2 tbsp tomato purée 900g pack frozen cauliflower florets 500g frozen spinach 400g tin chopped tomatoes 1 vegetable stock cube, made up to 200ml 240g long-grain rice
Heat the olive oil in a large, deep saucepan over a medium heat and
add the onion, garlic and ginger. Cook for 5 mins, until the onion is
starting to soften, then add the tikka powder and tomato purée and cook
for a further 1 min.
Add the cauliflower, spinach, chopped tomatoes and vegetable stock
to the pan and increase the heat to high. Cover with a lid, bring to a
boil, then reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 20 mins, until the
cauliflower is tender and the spinach has wilted.
Meanwhile, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Add the
rice and cook for 15 mins until tender. Divide the rice between 4
shallow bowls and top with the curry.
Great British weather, we’ve been having a rough old time recently. But dont let a bit of wind and rain keep you indoors. With Spring just around the corner, why not layer up, dig out the walking boots and head outdoors! Spend some time reconnecting with nature and appreciate the seasons as they change. Check out these super local short walks and see if they giev you any inspiration for how to spend a rainy weekend.
The Edge, Alderley Edge
Super local, why not head over to The Edge in Alderley Edge. Choose a loop path to walk along and enjoy the views over the lookout point pictured above! Be wary of muddy trails after you start walking downhill. We wouldnt recommend walking this one in flip flops (learn from our mistakes.) Pay to park.
Macclesfield Forest, Macclesfield
Trees have a calming effect on us, so what better place to visit than a forest full of them! Take a stroll round the resevoir and up through the trees. Free parking.
The Cloud, Congleton
Have you been up to The Cloud in Congleton? A short inclined walk up to the top of the hill for panoramic views across Cheshire. Want to make the walk harder? Dont drive up the hill and park at the bottom and get some extra steps in. Free parking.
Marbury Park, Anderton
A little further out is Marbury Park in Northwich, watch the sail club on Marbury lake, walk through the rows of trees, and look at everyone cute dogs being walked. Pay to park. Dog Friendly.
Tatton Park, Knutsford
A crowd favourite, take a loop walk round the lake, or check out Tatton Hall or Tatton farm. If you want a longer walk start at the town entrance and walk straight down to the farm and back. That will definitely get you your daily steps in! Pay to park.
Pickmere Lake, Wincham
And if your looking for somewhere to catch a pretty sunset at the end of the day, Pickmere Lake in Wincham is a beautiful lake. Take a seat on one of the benches, or see if you can find one of the two jettys and stand on the water. Its also a popular spot for outdoor swimmers, so if thats your thing then dont forget your wetsuit and a towel! Free parking.
Have any favourite walks you would recommend? Let us know!
Yoga is amazing! I think we can all agree on that one. And we know if you yogis could, you’d spend 25 hours a day, 8 days a week practicing! But like anything, too much of one thing is good for nothing. There’s more to life, a lot more! Doing the same thing day in day out is tiring, boring, and easily done! We’re comfortable with this though, this is our safe place, a place where we feel in control. And this safe, controlled place is called our comfort zone. Sometimes it’s good to switch things up a little, try something new, meet new people, have new experiences.
So, besides yoga what else can we spend our time doing? We’ve thrown together 5 hobbies you can take up locally!
Fitness First! Maybe this one’s up for debate as to whether it’s classed as a hobby or not. But we have some avid walkers here at The Studio, so we’re going for yes, it is most definitely a hobby! And we’re not just talking about a trip to the shops, we’re talking about the long, beautiful, scenic walks that sometimes last for hours!
Not only is walking good for the physical body, it works wonders for the mind too! There’s nothing like a long walk over the tops or through the woodland feeling that fresh air on your face and the breeze through your hair, if you’ve got hair that is… Rain or shine, pop some boots on it’s walking time!
Walking in a group is a great way to get this healthy hobby started and it’ll help you stay motivated too! Check out the local walking groups and the walks they’re planning to go on! Maybe you can join the next one!
Anytime, anywhere… Reading makes for a great hobby because not only does it enrich your mind with knowledge, it reduces stress, helps you relax, and you can literally do it anywhere! The Studio team have GAME when it comes to reading. Check out 5 books we’re currently engrossed in! Give them a go and tell us what you think! And if you have any favourites please tell!
1. The Alchemist – Paulo Coelho
2. You are a Badass – Jen Sincero
3. The Untethered Soul – Michael A. Singer
4. Me – Elton John 5. The Secret – Rhonda Byrne
5. The Secret – Rhonda Byrne
If a thrill is what you’re after, has climbing ever entered your mind? Believe it or not there’s a whole community of climbers out there that seek out all the sweet spots for climbing. There’s even a fair few climbs locally in Alderley Edge! So if you want to feel on top of the worl…edge, then have a look to see if you’ve stumbled across some climbs without even realising, maybe you can try them next time.
We wouldn’t recommend running for the rocks straight away if you’re new to this hobby. Maybe give bouldering a go first to see how you get on with the luxury of crash mats… The closest one is Substation in Macclesfield! Recommended by Donna who’s partial to a little climb every now and again!
Fancy yourself as the creative kind? Then you’ll want to join the Sketchbookers! They’re calling you!
It’s not everybody’s cup of tea, but there’s more to arts and crafts than just enjoyment. It promotes focus, concentration and readies the brain for learning!
5. All Rounder
You’re probably wondering what an all rounder is? Well we’re definitely not speaking about cricket, that’s for sure. Although, that would make a great hobby. We are talking about Wim Hoff and his method to becoming a happier, healthier, stronger you! Because why wouldn’t you want to try something that helps you achieve all those things in life. This has been a talking point in The Studio of recent and we’re interested to see who’s giving it a go? We’d love to know!
If you fancy a challenge, don’t mind the cold, and you’re feeling committed then this could be the perfect thing to try. Here’s everything you need to know about the Wim Hof Method and how to incorporate this method into your daily life!
One of our favourite acts of self care is treating ourselves to dining out every now and then. Is there anything better than a Sunday morning brunch? We believe food is a major part of our overall health and wellbeing, afterall we are what we eat, so they say!
There is a lot of speculation about following certain diets to benefit our health and our planet, and we can all afford to be a little more educated and conscious when making decisions about what we eat. Afterall the food we put into our bodies is our fuel, our energy, it can effect our mood, our skin, and our health. So we want to makesure we are filling ourselves with the best possible options to support our daily life right?
We are not here to preach about what you should and shouldn’t eat, everything in moderation, and balancing the good with the not so good is okay every now and then. So whichever type of lifestyle you choose to follow whether you eat meat, vegetarian, flexitarian, vegan or gluten free, find the foods which make you feel GOOD and support your wellbeing. THATS what we are about.
We have compiled a list of a few of our favourite healthy food eateries in the area. Tried, tested and loved by us and our Studio community!
Looking for healthy food to grab and go? This place is one of our go to places for our lunch breaks at The Studio. Super local, just down the road from us. Its perfect if your in a rush for lunch, you can call up and pre order your food and collect it when you are ready. Freshly prepared, healthy and tasty! They have a great selection of vegan/vegetarian options, as well as low fat meat options such as turkey and salmon. We love the falafel and the chicken wraps, super filling and nutritious, they are a studio favourite. You can also sit in and enjoy the American diner style feel to the round glass restaurant.
Wild and Wild is a completely plant based cafe located on the main high street in Congleton. If you want to try going vegan but dont know where to start, Wild and Wild has a great menu of foods not too far from your familiar favourites. Think you cant trade in your classic hamburger, then think again! Try their Beyond Burger and then get back to us, you might just get converted!
They also offer great alternatives to just your average coffee with a great selection of hot elixir drinks bursting with health benefits. As well as a selection of fresh smoothies and juices. (I recommend the Adaptogenic hot chocolate for a sweet treat!) And don’t forget to check out their amazing selection of cakes, you can get them made to order too if you have any special events coming up that is missing a plant based party cake!
Its family friendly complete with a kids play area, outdoor seating and its dog friendly so you can take your fury companions with you, or just appreciate the cuteness. Plus they have sustainable, eco friendly products and clothing for sale. We love everything this place stands for!
A little further out but this beautiful eatery is worth travelling out to. Like us The Garden embodies GROWTH, (check out their beautiful GROW wall design just on the right as you walk in!) The perfect spot to go and meet with friends, work from your laptop or try one of the delicious food options. A health food café and juicery, with a largely plant based menu, created around seasonal produce and monthly specials. They have the BEST selection of fresh juices and smoothies, perfect if your looking for a health boost. My favourite is the Green Peace smoothie, containing apple, spinach, kale, parsley, cucumber, avocado, spirulina and wheatgrass. All that green goodness and it tastes amazing!
Looking for brunch? Build your own! Start from scratch and build your brunch the way you want it with great vegan and non vegan options! But that’s not all, this great place in Wilmslow will see you through from morning till evening with a great dinner menu, and of course a bar! They also have local music acts on every Thursday from 8pm onwards, a great way to spend an evening and support some local talent! A great lively atmosphere, our Studio front of house team went to enjoy a catch up over brunch here. We recommend the Posh Beans as part of your breakfast, vegan and gluten free and definitely a step up from your average Heinz baked beans. You’ll see what we mean..
Have you had chance to go and check out this new place that’s opened in the heart of Knutsford town centre? We think its just what Knutsford needs, open all day with a choice of breakfast, lunch and dinner perfect for any time of day. And they have a seperate menu for all you plant based lovers out there. Plus you might spot our lovely instructor Alicia there, make sure to grab one of her freshly made juices for sale there! Located super close to Tatton Park too, so why not take a walk afterwards and get those legs working.
And of course if you are in the city and visiting our NEW Manchester Studio, then makesure you check out Foodwell after your yoga class. Beautiful LA inspired wellness restaraunt offering all day dining, a variety of food, juices and amazing cocktails! We love this light, bright space and the friendly positive atmosphere it exudes. And we can’t wait to spend our summer evenings hanging out there thats for sure! Super healthy, fresh food options that are worthy of an instagram post. We are thrilled to be partnered with Foodwell and are throwing a Brunch event to celebrate! Join us on Saturday 22nd February from 11am onwards, for an hour yoga class followed by food and drinks!
Drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your spot!
Dont forget you can grab one of our fresh and fruity Cowherds juices, a Kombucha for that gut health, a healthy smoothie or an Alkaline water here at The Studio too!
Foodies let us know what you think and if we’ve missed any of your favourites off this list!
If we are sure about anything in January it’s how manic it can be after all those festive shenanigans! We are all trying hard to stick to our resolutions and be our fittest, healthiest, best self. More often than not this becomes exhausting and results in us giving up.
Sometimes all we need to take a moment to relax, take a deep breath and ground ourselves. Giving ourselves the space to breath and create a clear and focused mind to make the most of each day. Meditation is a simple exercise to intergrate into your routine with huge benefits. Studies suggest using this practice on average 5-10 minutes a day can reduce stress, improve your emotional health and enhance self-awareness. Therefore, below we have included some of The Studio favorites and the worlds best meditation apps ready to help prepare you for the new year ahead.
Price: Download for free with optional
Google Rating: 5*
This app is perfect for those who are new
to the world of meditation, offering a seven day beginners program with simple calming
exercises to help focus on your breathing techniques whilst clearing your mind.
They also provide a ‘calm Kids’ section for those aged between 3-17 years old
so your children can feel relaxed too. Furthermore, they include a library for ‘sleep
stories’ so you can fall asleep feeling content.
Price: 14 day free trial (optional subscription after)
Google Rating: 5*
This app creates personalized plans based on
information you provide focusing on balancing your life with their mindfulness
techniques for daytime use, focusing on training your mind and body to fulfil a
happier lifestyle. To make full use of this app they also provide sleep music
tracks and nature soundtracks to help give you a blissful night sleep
Price: 7 days free trial (optional subscriptions after)
Google Rating: 5*
This app provides you with a personalized plan
based on questions asked at the beginning of your experience. Aura presents you
with a daily meditation practice based on your answers. This app is also
compatible with the ‘Apple watch’ and aims to reduce stress and increase
Price: 7 days free trial (optional subscriptions after)
Google Rating: 5*
This app gives you the most hands-on
experience when it comes to practicing meditation compared to all other apps.
It also includes discussion groups and community features, known as “a social network
for mediators”. Including ambient music and soundtracks to calm the mind.
Price: 7 days free trial (optional subscriptions after)
Google Rating: 5*
This app was created to motivate those who
might lose sight along the way due to their busy lifestyles with weekly updates,
so it never feels like a chore. Daily videos and guided meditations teach you what
to do in the simplest way possible, including a range of content showing ways
to manage stressors such as anxiety
For further tips & tricks check out our ‘Studio Blogs’ which covers further insight into the world of the Studio, Yoga, health, and a happier lifestyle!
Breathing is important, of course it is. In other words, it’s what keeps us alive. But how often do we take time out to focus on our breathing? Probably not a lot unless you have been instructed to do so by your yoga teacher! We are all great at breathing none the less, and how clever of our bodies to take care of this without us even thinking about it. Pranayama is our life force, our breath. One of the eight limbs of Yoga, it is an important part of practice we can bipass thinking about as we focus on nailing the different asanas.
But, there are plenty of techniques you will be interested in adding into your practice;
Channel Cleaning Breath
Single Nostril Breath
Skull Shining Breath
Sama Vritti Pranayama
Our very own Jane says:- Bhastrik Pranayama is her favourite breathing technique to use in her classes and describes it as the ‘sniffing dog’. Bhastrika is a small short breaths performed fast. A common position to do this in is a forward facing plank.
You may of come across some of these techniques in your classes already and wondered what the benefits are. If the breath is quick and shallow, this can trigger a panic response within the body as it thinks its under stress or in danger. For example, the body can switch into fight or flight mode, and bring forward feelings of stress and anxiety, even if we aren’t actually in a dangerous situation. However, focusing on slowing the breath, taking longer and slower inhales and exhales, actually calms the nervous system, creates awareness and focus on the present moment, and is a form of meditation. Mindful breathing is the simplest way to lower stress levels, and it can be done anytime, anywhere.
The most common breathing techniques you probably come across in class are;
Sama Vritti Pranayama (Equal Part Breath)
Becoming aware of the breath we start to increase the length of each inhale and exhale to a count of 4 (this number can increase throughout practice). We inhale for four, pause for four, and slowly exhale for 4. Keeping all parts of the breath even.
Ujjayi (Ocean Breath)
Known for its soft soothing oceanic sound, breathing through the nose creating a ‘HAA’ on the exhale. The sound of Ujjayi is created by gently constricting the opening of the throat to create some resistance to the passage of air. It is an energising and relaxing breath to help guide you through your practice.
So what movements benefit what breath?
When we are forward folding or twisting, this is on the exhale as as the lungs empty, it creates more space. The muscles also relax more on the exhale, sinking down. Therefore you can stretch, reach or twist slightly further.
When we are lifting or opening in a posture, this is when we should inhale. Inhalation is energising the body as its taking the oxygen inwards. As the lungs expand the heart can project forward more.
Breathing techniques can be practiced anywhere, on the go, in class or at home. Anytime you feel yourself getting overwhelmed or stressed, turn your attention inwards and focus on the breath.