Anne’s classes on hold…but not forever

Dear Yoga Friends, with talk of the gradual re-opening of various industry sectors over the next several weeks and months, we know it is important to REMAIN DILIGENT in our efforts to maintain health and safety in our homes, workplaces, and in the community. It will likely be a very different set up than before for yoga studios and in-person classes, with possible size restrictions, social distancing requirements, sanitation and disinfection protocols, and reduced schedules.

For my classes specifically, all group classes continue to be cancelled until further notice. My offerings to you have always been my passion, my joy, my dharma…and part of that joy is the interaction and face-to-face connection of teacher-to-student, yogi-to-yogi, friend-to-friend. While that may not be possible at this time, please know that I am looking forward to seeing you in the months ahead. Some of you have asked about online classes; while I am not set up to provide them at this time, at best I have been able to offer my GUIDED MEDITATIONS as ways to explore the inner self, calm the mind and body, and boost spirits. As it might feel like we are holding our collective breath, waiting for the next piece of good or bad news in this pandemic, I encourage you to EXHALE…and let’s just see what unfolds.

Before the pandemic, many of us complained about not having enough time to practice yoga or exercise daily, too much external stimulation, or putting our devices before our relationships. Now that we have that time, some of the complaints are at the other end of the spectrum…feeling boredom, more time on devices, too much time to think, etc. And in another few months, we will complain again, as it seems to be human nature to want something else. The teachings of yoga remind us of finding some degree of CONTENTMENT (Santosha), regardless of the circumstances, situation, and conditions. One day at a time…one moment at a time…knowing full well that things change and nothing is permanent. So can we let go of worry, anger, and judgment and replace them with faith, patience, and compassion? Can we go with the flow and use best practices while events play out? Sure we can. While I write a lot about these things, it may seem repetitive…but maybe we need these reminders OFTEN. I know I do…

“Just for today, I will be unafraid. Especially I will not be afraid to enjoy what is beautiful, and to believe that as I give to the world, so the world will give to me.” – a gift of wisdom from a friend…

NAMASTE

 

Weathering COVID-19 with Self-Care

Friends and yoga lovers, this is a time when we ALL must heed the advice of not only our health officials and leaders but our own “inner gurus” for self-care. That may mean disconnecting from social media, news reports, and travel stories for a time so the fear and worry can lessen, if even for just a little while. A solitary walk in the winter sunshine followed by an afternoon savasana was just what was needed today to help slow my racing heart and calm my overthinking mind.

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All my yoga classes were cancelled for March break anyway, including Manotick classes and City of Ottawa classes…so to inform you that they CONTINUE TO BE CANCELLED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE likely comes as no surprise. Please take care during this challenging time with all the recommended precautions; keep up a home yoga practice for body and mind; and practice patience, compassion, and loving-kindness so we can all get through this.

Sending Reiki for protection, care, and safety…Shanti, Shanti, Shanti.

Spring Yoga 2020 schedule…coming soon

You know spring surely is coming soon when we switch to daylight savings time! Remember to put your clocks ahead an hour this weekend!

As we wind down the winter session of my yoga classes this month, this is a reminder there are NO CLASSES FROM MAR. 12 – 24 INCLUSIVE as I am away. The Spring Yoga schedule starts in April but until then, I hope to see you on the mat for a few regular classes after March break.

Registration for the Spring Session of Yoga-Pilates at NCAC opens tonight at 9 pm online, and tomorrow in person at any City of Ottawa client service centre. Register quickly as this class always fills up fast!

My new year “mantra” of “less struggle, more ease” and moving forward with clear vision seems to be coming to fruition. Whether in a yoga pose, in the line up at the bank, in traffic, or during a tough conversation…a conscious effort to follow the path of least resistance seems to be making a big difference. Stuff still happens and challenges present themselves, but rolling with it/through it/under it/over it with more acceptance seems to bring lightness to the body, mind, and soul and a clarity of vision. Good timing as we transition from the heaviness of winter to spring!

NAMASTE…and see you on the mat!

Winter Yoga with Anne

Yoga classes are now underway for this winter 2020! I hope to see you on the mat at one or more this season. CHECK HERE FOR YOGA CLASS INFO.

In addition, join me Sat. Jan. 18 from 4:00 – 6:00 pm at Empower Me Yoga Studio for a “Master Class: Journey Through the Koshas”. Beginning with a brief lecture and meditation, we will then flow through a sequence of poses three times, with each round promoting deeper awareness and insight. From the physical body to the energetic, mental, wisdom, and bliss layers, a “FIVE KOSHAS CLASS” is a truly holistic practice that helps to balance our WHOLE being, and encourages us to live gracefully and fully from each layer of Self.

REGISTER FOR THE KOSHAS CLASS ONLINE HERE: https://www.wellnessliving.com/rs/event/empowermeyoga?k_class=184582&k_class_tab=14994

See you on the mat!

December Classes and Holiday Schedule 2019

This year, my plan is to gracefully, calmly, and joyfully navigate the month of December without getting all caught up in the hustle and bustle of the season. I am pleased to say that most of my Christmas gift shopping is DONE (thanks to an impromptu shopping afternoon and a great parking spot!). One way to stay grounded is to keep up a regular yoga practice. Mindful movement, focused breathing, embracing everyday moments of joy, and cultivating kindness is a huge antidote to what can be a very stressful time of the year. Come join me on the mat! Here is my schedule for December:

  • Regular Manotick classes continue until Sun. Dec. 22.
  • Yoga-Pilates at NCAC finishes Wed. Dec. 11. For those registered for the winter session, it begins Wed. Jan. 15, 2020.
  • HOLIDAY CLASSES at Denise Smith Dance Studio – 9:15 am – 10:15 am:
    • Tue. Dec. 24 – Christmas Eve Gentle Yoga
    • Fri. Dec. 27 – Candlelight Yin Yoga (bring your bolster and blanket!)
    • Tue. Dec. 31 – New Year’s Eve Hatha Yoga (UPDATE: Unfortunately, this class is cancelled due to poor weather…so sorry!)
      • Please note that pre-registration is required for the holiday classes to secure your spot. Send me an email to put your name on the list!
  • No classes on Thu. Dec. 26, Sun. Dec. 29 or Thu. Jan. 2.
  • January classes resume Sun. Jan. 5, 2020.
  • Throughout December, a portion of the proceeds from each Manotick yoga class will be donated to The Ottawa Food Bank on behalf of Yoga In My Backyard and our yoga community. Did you know that almost 40,000 clients use this service on a monthly basis? Additional donations will be happily accepted at the studio OR donate directly to The Ottawa Food Bank HERE.
  • Recently I had the pleasure of being part of a PODCAST, discussing the importance of slowing down and taking a breath on a daily basis. Listen to Episode 30 here.
  • “SOUL VIBRATIONS” – Inner Work Day Mini-Retreat at Vibration Studios, Osgoode, ON on Sat. Feb. 29, 2020, 1:00 pm – 4:30 pm. Registration is on NOW with an early-bird bonus if you register by Dec. 31, 2019. See MY RETREATS for full details.

Wishing you love, light, joy, and moments of awe this holiday season and beyond!

Take 5…

…5 breaths, 5 stretches, 5 minutes…Stepping back and taking this little break can do wonders for your mind, body, and spirit!

While longer periods of breathing with awareness, stretching and strengthening the body, and sitting in meditation are more beneficial, sometimes it may seem daunting to schedule in an hour of downtime. So taking these smaller 5 to 10 minute breaks throughout the day with conscious breathing and awareness might just be more “do-able”, and the effects can be felt immediately.

TRY THIS: set the timer on your phone for 5 minutes then turn away from your computer, sit tall in your chair with both feet on the floor and hands in your lap. Close your eyes; soften your shoulders, your jaw, and your face. Begin to breathe slowly and deeply, feeling the inhale and exhale in your body. Continue until the timer goes off. Notice how you feel! Imagine if you extended this to 10 minutes, 20 minutes, etc.!

For more info on the benefits of taking a mindful break, CHECK OUT THIS PODCAST (Episode 30) with me: https://thehowesgroup.com/podcast/

And if you are looking for MORE THAN 5 MINUTES of mind/body/spirit self-care, join me on the mat at a yoga class or retreat!

 

Reminder of class cancellation dates – Oct/Nov 2019

Nice to see so many of you on the mat these past few weeks. Yoga is wonderful any time of the year! With crisp autumn mornings and fresh cool air, it sure feels good to be outside. In the studio, we are moving and bending and breathing, sometimes warming up and sometimes cooling off. Bare feet or warm socks, come join us!

A couple of reminders:

  1. There are no YIN classes on Sun. Oct. 20 and Sun. Nov. 10.
  2. Clocks go back on Sun. Nov. 3 at 2 am – end of daylight savings time for this year.

See you in class!

Welcome to Fall Classes with Anne

Well here we are mid-September already. The flowers in my backyard are still blooming, not ready to let go of summer just yet. Join me on the mat to transition into autumn with mindful movement, expanded breath, guided meditation, and sustenance for the soul!

    • Morning classes are underway in Manotick at Denise Smith Dance Studio, on Sundays (YIN), Tuesdays (HATHA), and Thursdays (YIN) from 9:15 am – 10:15 am. Click here for details. Note there are no classes on the following dates: Thu. Sept. 26, Sun. Sept. 29, Sun. Oct. 20, Sun. Nov. 17.
    • Fall session of Yoga-Pilates at NCAC has begun and the class is full! Registration is on for the Winter session so register soon. More info at https://ottawa.ca/en/recreation-parks-and-culture/recreation-programs. 
    • Inner Work Day Mini-Retreats are filling up! Click here for details. (UPDATE: The mini retreats are now full. More offerings coming in 2020!)

Recently I spent some time with my beloved teacher, Yogrishi Vishvketu (https://akhandayoga.com/) and he reminded me of the importance of honour. Honour for our ancestors, honour for our teachers and those who inspire us, and honour for this planet, this life, this Universe in which we are blessed to experience LIFE. To honour means “to hold in great respect or high esteem”. When I reflected more on that, it made me feel a deep sense of gratitude for YOU…those of you who practice with me, follow me, and open your hearts to my recounting of the teachings of this beautiful path of yoga. I honour YOU. My task is to serve and I look forward to sharing space with you for another season of YOGA!

YOGA with Anne this Fall 2019

Wow this summer is sailing by! Just a few weeks left then back to class, back to work, back to routine. Hope to see you this fall at one of my classes (see summary below). For detailed class info, click HERE.

  1. YOGA-PILATES at Nepean Creative Arts Centre – registration opens Aug. 14 at 9 pm online, Aug. 15 in person at any City of Ottawa client service centre. Classes begin Wed. Sept. 18.
  2. MANOTICK MORNING YOGA CLASSES at Denise Smith Dance Studio – Classes begin Sept. 8. Sundays (YIN), Tuesdays (HATHA), Thursdays (YIN). All classes are an hour from 9:15 – 10:15 am. Click HERE for full details and please take note of the dates on which there are no classes (Sept. 26, Sept. 29, Oct. 20, Nov. 17).
  3. AUTUMN YOGA RETREAT FOR WOMEN at Shanti Retreat on Wolfe Island – a few spots available for this annual extended weekend retreat Sept. 26-29. Click HERE for info.
  4. MINI-RETREATS at Misiwe Ni Relations Healing Lodge – save the dates for Sun. Oct. 27 and Sun. Nov. 24. More info to come this September.

Get your feet in the grass, your face to the sun, and smile as you take in these last weeks of summer!

Namaste…

Summer Soul Surfing

I am not a real surfer. In fact, I’m not even a good swimmer and don’t feel very confident in the water. The closest thing I’ve ever done to surfing is stand-up paddle boarding! But I am often drawn to the idea of navigating LIFE like a surfer riding the waves. Getting up every day and jumping on that board; at times floating and bobbing for awhile just hanging out until a big wave comes, then rising to action to negotiate the ups and downs, twists and turns. Sometimes falling off, sputtering and floundering, and other times, staying up with skill and precision. Sometimes feeling so out of breath and upside down that my bearings are totally lost, doubting whether I can do this at all…

Sometimes there are those painful moments of loss like something has fallen off my surfboard and out of my life, down to the depths of the sea below or blown away in the wind, never to be seen again. Other times there are the joys of success and reward and feeling so stoked after an intense ride. And then there are those times where I’m just going with flow on that imaginary surfboard, feeling so connected with my surroundings and my breath and everything is falling in to place. I am letting things fall into place…stepping out of my head and out of my own way to let my soul shine. Moments where it is magical and awe-inspiring.

Maybe we are all “soul-surfing” through life, and the key is to keep getting back on that surfboard no matter what…to be resilient. To remember that there are fellow soul surfers out there to support one another. To ride the waves with presence and with just the right balance of strength and softness.

Today was our last yoga class at the Manotick studio as we break for July and August. I always enjoy using these summer months to work on my own “soul-surfing” through personal yoga, meditation, and being in nature. Stay tuned to this site for more info about fall classes, starting Sept. 8, 2019, and if you’re interested in my women’s yoga retreat this September, click HERE for more info as there are just a few spots left. May you all have a safe, happy summer!

And to all you REAL surfers out there…hang loose and rip that Perfect 10!

 

Clark Little Photography, Hawaii

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