Weekly Class Theme: Anahata Chakra Vinyasa Flow


Supta Virasana; Photo by Heather Bonker


I have received a lot of great feedback from all of you after our Silent Themed classes last week. Many loved the opportunity to build a better mind body connection, as well as the meditative rhythm and flow.  With that in mind, I have decided to make this week’s class theme Anahata Chakra Vinyasa Flow.  Where you can connect with your heart engery and still enjoy the beautiful meditative sensation of our asana practice.

The word “Vinyasa” in Sanskrit can be translated as “to place something in a special way”. When you break down the root words “Vi” means “in a special way” and “Nyasa” means “to place”. In a Vinyasa Flow class, we coordinate our movement with our breath to flow from one pose to the next in a fluid sequence, like in Surya Namaskara (Sun Salutations).

To put the words to test, I have created a nice flow routine, opening the chest to access our Anahata Chakra (Heart Chakra). In Sanskrit, Anahata means “unhurt, unstuck, and unbeaten” and Chakra means wheel, a spinning wheel of energy or centers of spiritual power in the human body.

Within the body exist several minor chakras (energy centers) and 7 major chakras. The Heart Chakra is perfectly situated in the middle of your body, balancing the world of matter (our lower three chakras) with the world of spirit (our upper three chakras). We will continue to learn more about charkras in the weeks to come.

See you on the tapis 😉

X om


Weekly Class Theme: Body Harmony


Photo by: Lya Cattel

This week we will go through our standing asanas/poses to help bring harmony to the body.

Standing asanas are the key to all other poses. They are essential for increased flexibility, strength, self confidence, balance within and without.

In these postures we need to keep our focus on bringing together the past and the future to be able to fully indulge in the present moment. Becoming fully aware of our the asana by invigorating the entire body as well as finding inner and outer stillness.

Iyengar often uses the image of flamingos sleeping on one leg with their heads tucked under their wings, and says “that there is what we are looking for, in our postures.”
Standing poses also provide the entire body with knowledge on the principles of alignment, which are essential in performing all poses before moving to more difficult yoga asanas, like Salamba Sirsasana (supported headstand).  Leaving the body wanting more oxygen, activating the heart, allowing for an increasing boost of circulation throughout the body to places that may often be neglected, such as the joints, connective tissues and internal organs.  Making the standing asanas both energising and calming, allowing the body to find its natural harmony with a firm and supportive base.
If you would like to read more about standing asanas here is a good article to read from Yoga International and why its important to incorporate them into your home practice.
Hope to see you all this week to work on your body harmony.



Weekly Class Theme: Duality and Peace


This week we will be celebrating both the International Day of Peace and the Autumn Equinox.

“Each year the International Day of Peace is observed around the world on 21 September. The General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, both within and among all nations and peoples.” Read more about the International day of peace. @ http://www.un.org/en/events/peaceday/

Le Centre de Yoga du Marais will be observing the International Day of Peace on Sunday the 24th, with free classes all day.  I will be teaching a small 45mn class at 15h.  I would love to see some of you there to share our practice together in the meaning of Peace.

Here is a link to learn more about the open house.  http://www.yogamarais.com/yoga-workshopsateliers/

To celebrate these two beautiful days, the Autumn Equinox and the International Day of Peace, we will use a heart opening sequence. Allowing us to be more receptive of giving and receiving of compassion, as well as understanding during this time of year that we observe duality in ourselves and the world.

Yogis believe that the change of the seasons is a powerful time for our bodies energetically.  With the Autumn Equinox on Friday the 22nd this is a perfect time to bring balance to the mind, body and spirit.  Its is a time when there is duality between light and dark. The same duality that exists in each of us.  It is a time to prepare the body to rest after all the growth that the spring and summer months brought.  A time to reflect and transform.

Take this time to set intentions, and realign the body mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and physically so that we can be open for greater growth, understanding, and peace.

I hope this weeks practice will help prepare our mind, body and spirit move into to this beautiful transitional time of year with ease. Balancing the energies of the mind and body to align our bodies to the natural rhythms of the earth and the suns’ cycles so we can enjoy rest, contemplation and renewal during this dormant phase of the year, like trees shedding their leaves, to feel lighter we too can enjoy the sensation of letting go. 

X Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti


Yoga Retreat Chateau De Layer

This year we will have a private domain, with a 2 houses, a small lake and of course the castle. All to ourselves!

Yoga will be done in the castel and you will have your own private house to share. Private rooms with double bed and shared bathrooms.

It will be from 18h30 the 9 of July- 10h the 14 of July.

It will included:

7h-9h morning practice, with 30 mins meditation (daily)

9h30 Breakfast (daily)

10h-13h Free time (trekking, walking meditation, swimming, reading, or relaxing)

13h30 Lunch (daily)

14h-17h Free time (trekking, walking meditation, swimming, reading, or relaxing)

17h30-19h Yin Yoga practice (4 classes)

19h30 Dinner

+ 1 cooking class ( a night where I will teach you some recipes and we will all cook together)

Yoga and food will be dome by me. All food will be bio, vegan and gluten free.  During the free time I will offer outings that you can go on and lunch will be offered in a sac, so you can take it with you if you decide to go to the village, trek/walking meditation, or go the the lake for the afternoon.

Please bring your own yoga mat.

I would like this time to be a time for you to go deeper into your practice.  Therefor it will be a smoke free and alcohol free space.  Cleansing of the body and the mind.

Cost will be 600€ and does not include transportation. The train stations are Chalon sur Saone or Lons le Saunier. I will drive there, so will be able to pick you up from the station.

If you are interested in coming contact me directly so I can give you more information. Your reservations will be confirmed upon payment.

Looking forward to sharing this wonderful experience with you.


Abhyasa/Practice: Weekly Class Theme


Abhyasa means having an attitude of persistent effort to attain and maintain a state of stable tranquility.

Sutra 1.13

Practice is the effort to secure steadiness.

Sutra 1.14

This practice becomes well-grounded when continued without interruption over a long period of time.

What does Patañjali mean by practice. Near the beginning of the Yoga Sutras, he gives us some solid, practical advice.

Initially, the goal of yoga is to steady the mind, to clear it of chatter and random impulses. He defines practice (abhyasa) as the effort of will required to achieve stability in that calm and clear state, though not without significant effort:

You may start to feel the benefits of your practice immediately, but you are only going to become well-grounded in the practice—able to summon up a calm and clear state with minimum effort, or even find yourself living permanently in a state of mental ease—after much dedicated effort. Patañjali has something to say about just this point:

Sutra 1.21

The goal is near for those who practice with extreme intensity.

Sutra 1.22

Thus, there will be a difference if the effort put into practice is mild, moderate or great.

8 hours a day, 2 hours a day, three times a week is a lot of asana and out of reach for most. But, of course, the physical practice is only a small part of the equation. The simple techniques we learn and refine in the context of the physical practice we can take out into our daily life, commuting to work, waiting in line at the store, interacting with our coworkers, our family and loved ones. The entirety of your life can become a yoga practice, the hours of training the mind to achieve expertise and mastery of the state of living, moment by moment. And it is the quality of your practice that is important not the quantity.

Come and get some good quality practice in this week with me and your fellow yogis, and achieve the true feeling of Abhyasa (attitude of persistent effort to attain and maintain a state of stable tranquility).

X om shanti

Weekly Class Theme: Silence


I had a special request to re-do this class theme.

A request that started, of course, with a series of questions on how to find that space.  My answer initially was practice, practice, practice. Which is true, but then as we further discussed I tried to explain that during our practice we have to pause and take the time in the posture to enjoy the silence.  The quieter you become, the more you can hear.

We will do a sequence together in silence, holding the asanas for a good length of time allowing you to find your space within and without.

We will take the time to look for the silence from where the sounds begin and where they return.  Paying more attention to space between the sounds around us.  Becoming aware of our outer silence helps to create inner silence and then the mind becomes still.

Remember, silence is not empty. It is full of answers.

“There is a voice that doesn’t use words. Listen.”


Silence without, stillness within.


Flow into Spring!


Happy Spring!!!

It’s the first day of Spring, also know as the Spring Equinox, when day and night are equal in both hemispheres.

All of nature is slowing waking up now after the Winter sleep. Buds are starting to show on the trees, flowers coming out of the earth and you might feel some slight changes in you as well.

The days are getting longer and the nights are shorter. With the powerful sun energy upon us you may feel like you want to take risks, be out in nature more and connect to the Earth again.

We can use this energy to create opportunities for positive change in our lives, using the opposite forces, light and dark, to remind ourselves that we are, and can be, whole and balanced individuals.

In the studio this week and next we will  use this time to take root and grow! Flowing into spring with a Vinyasa Flow routine to help you ground yourself during this time of year when we just want to run.

Enjoy this week coming out of the darkness and into the light!

X Om Shanti

Weekly Class Theme: Digestion aid


This week we will do a lovely sequence to help aid your digestion supporting your general health, relieve you of some of that extra bloating that may be the consequences of over indulging, help reduce stress (which for many is a cause of digestive upset), release tension in the abdomen, increase blood circulation and give a good cleanse to the kidneys.

Clean, happy healthy body, make for a clean happy health mind 🙂

See you there on the tapis!

Have a happy week

Weekly Class Theme: Svatantrya


Svatantrya in sanskrit means free will. The freedom we have to exist, to know, to experience, to create as well as creatively express who we are.

To practice Svatantrya during our closes this week, I will give you some time during the sequence to use your free creative will and discover what asanas/postures you would like to express with your body at that present moment. Remembering  Yoga is not a competition sport, we are working within 😉 Enjoy the moment and discovering what your body wants to express at that time, and do take the time to enjoy your fellow yogis in the classes creative expressions of themselves. It will be fun!

Think of some other ways you can practice Svatantrya and share your experiences with me when I see you.

X om