What are you listening to at the moment?
Rising Appalachia and Ocean Wisdom around the house – polar opposites but both lyrical genius.
In the car I’m between an old Gatecrasher mix that I found in a box at my Mom’s (which includes As The Rush Comes and Spin Spin Sugar – invoking memories of sweaty dancefloors and trying to literally mount the speaker in the early 2000s) and Rage Against The Machine (alas, Know Your Enemy doesn’t quite have the same impact coming out of a rusty civic going 20mph around Fallowfield).
Class will always have a solid mix of Glitterbox, Hip Hop and Hippy. Current fave is Lloyd Carner – polished with a bit of rough, perfect to iron out the creases in Sun Sals.
Where would you be teleported to?
Right, either Sunset Strip in the 80’s so I could live my Motley Crue glam rock dream (very thankful that yoga pants come in shiny materials so I can pretend they’re leather and that I’m in a band) or Paris in the 1920s, as Lost Generation literature is my favourite and I definitely would have given Hemingway something to write about.
Where do you buy your clothes from?
I invest in Yoga pants because I live in them (Sweaty Betty unitards are my fave, Lulu and Liquido for high waists although I’ve got a mega long body so you’ll always see my belly button). Souvenir t-shirts from holidays, training and gigs. Non-yoga things are pretty much anything with sequins, on wherever that may come from. I do a lot of clothes swapping with friends which is pretty sweet as I’m trying not to be so throw-away with regard to what I wear.
What does a regular practice look like for you?
A regular practice is something that honours how you’re feeling and meets you where you are to explore that – it is not about punishment or atoning for the sins of a heavy weekend or a slice of pizza. For me it always starts with the body. I take a led class twice a week and do my own thing over 4 days. This isn’t necessarily asana; I take dance classes, I run and weight lift. In my opinion the body holds the secrets of the mind and movement can help you explore all these cool little caverns you never knew you had. I’ve been dancing since I was child and it is just in my nature to make shapes; it’s how I communicate with others and how I check my internal weather.
My daily pranayama practice is super important to me. We really do underestimate the power of the breath and I am the first to admit that I did for the first few years of practice I hated the ‘breathy bit’. Now I do an exercise daily, only for about 10 minutes, and I find it so profound. I’m hoping to do some training later this year with my teacher as I’d love to share more of this in class.
And of course – one full rest day, whatever rest looks like for you. For me it’s a big old steam and sauna or bath if one doesn’t want to leave the house – lovely stuff.
Any advice to a yoga beginner?
Come along and have a go, and then do it again with someone else, and someone else and someone else etc… I think it’s so important to find a class you really vibe with as that’s what will keep you coming back and help you build a habit.
Rome was not built in a day – you don’t run a marathon on your first light jog, so don’t expect to nail every posture in class on day 1. It is a practice, the clue is in the name. The more you do, the better it will feel. Coz ultimately it’s not what it looks like, it’s what it feels like. Oh and you are so allowed to enjoy it!