Yoga Norton- Chair Yoga and Gentle Exercise

Yoga Classes in Stockton-on -Tees
Gentle Exercise Classes in Norton

**Main Picture of Norton Duck Pond sourced from Stephen Hornsey, a talented local photographer***

I’m really excited to be offering ‘Move it or Lose it!’ Gentle Exercise Classes
and Yoga and Meditation and Chair Yoga Classes in Norton and Stockton-on-Tees.

Yoga Norton

Classes Aimee will run are designed to help look after your physical and mental well-being coming out of lockdown…

As we approach the transition period of lockdown restrictions easing, the end is hopefully in sight. Preparing to look after physical and mental wellbeing in this transition period is as important as ever.
Our gentle movement and exercise classes and Hatha Yoga classes help to improve:


  • Flexibility
  • Balance
  • Aerobic Fitness
  • Strength
  • Mental Wellbeing


We practice in in a safe, inclusive, non-judgemental environment. Everybody is welcome! We also combine postures and movements with the breath. This makes the practice a work-in as much as a work-out. Simple meditation techniques and homework mean you can incorporate what you learn in class into your life.


– Where are classes available? –

Mondays

exercise stockton norton
Community classes Yoga Move it or Lose it Teesside Middlesbrough Stockton

Move it or Lose it – 3:15-4:15pm Norton Glebe Community Centre, 6 Hanover Parade, Norton, TS20 1RF Stockton-On-Tees

Tuesdays

yoga stockton yoga norton

Yoga & Meditation – 7:00-8:30pm Ragworth Community Centre, St Johns Way, Stockton-On-Tees TS19 0FB .

Ragworth Community Centre is on the cusp of Norton and Stockton, easily accessible from both areas of Stockton-on-Tees.

Prices

£6.50 for a drop in or a block of 4 lessons for £20 (£5.00 per class) .

For information and bookings….

For more information and bookings, please contact us using the following:

Email: Amala.teesside@gmail.com / aimee.bell@moveitorloseit.co.uk
Facebook: AmalaTeesside / Move it or Lose it Teesside

Or you can use our contact form here.

About The author:

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is screenshot_20200618_093236.jpg
Aimee is a Yoga, Meditation and Move It or Lose It! teacher in located in Middlesbrough, England, UK. Aimee teaches in Norton, Stockton, Middlesbrough, Guisborough and Redcar and Cleveland, as well as offering online classes.

To find out more, visit www.amalateesside.com

Bereavement: Positive ways Yoga and Meditation can help.

Yoga Middlesbrough – How Yoga and Meditation can help with bereavement and grief….

Losing a loved one is never easy. My father recently passed away after a long fight with cancer. The emotions, shock and myriad of other emotions stirred up within us and family/friends are difficult to process. As well as having our own emotions to process and work through, we support others through this period of mourning too.

My much loved father and his adoring fans!


My Dad is, was and always will be very loved. He was a true family man and was a pillar of the local community, as well as a loved colleague by those he worked with. My brother, sister, mum and I were at his side when he passed.
I have never experienced heartbreak like it, seeing my family go through that same anguish is also heart-breaking.

I have found a lot of peace and solace in my practice, especially focusing on the breath and being still. It brings a lot of peace and clarity to the mind.

– Grief is natural –

Unfortunately, grief is something we all have to experience some time in life. Grief can be physical as well as emotional. Especially a really strong sense of tiredness and fatigue. This is how I have felt since my father passed.

crop pitiful black woman embracing knees on bed
Photo by Alex Green on Pexels.com

Everyone experiences grief differently and there is no right or wrong way to process grief.

Symptoms of grief…

A few common symptoms people experience when processing a bereavement are:

  • Tiredness and fatigue
  • Longing and pining
  • Headaches
  • Appetite changes – loss or comfort eating
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Difficulty doing day-to-day things
  • Aches and pains
  • Lack of focus

Although this list does not describe everyone’s experience and some may experience other symptoms when grieving.

People can also worry that they are becoming mentally unwell, or that they are starting to overcome the grief. However, often ‘grief intrusion’ can occur, where someone or something triggers a memory, where they feel like they have returned back to the beginning stages of grief. This is normal, as grief is not a linear process.

Grief intrusion can happen when shopping, or when practicing. Basically at anytime of the day. It can catch us off-guard, but this is a part of the grieving process.

How Yoga and Meditation can help us process grief and bereavements.

Grief can become very overwhelming. A regular Yoga and Meditation practice can help us work through and explore feelings that arise when grieving. From gentle movement and stretching in Asana practice, a focus on the breath and practicing stillness and a sense of community within the Yoga and Meditation world, we can start to work through our grief.

– Choosing to look after ourselves –

By practicing even for 15 minutes a day, you can free up some of your physical and emotional energy. This helps the body and mind relax and recuperate. Giving ourselves time to process grief is really important and the time we get in Yoga and Meditation sessions really has a positive impact. Also, when we dedicate time to our practice, we naturally start to slow down and this starts to reflect off the mat too.

– Creating space in our lives –

As well as time, we need space. I found that I needed to give myself space daily to process things and reflect. When I had too much planned, or had too much work on, I felt overwhelmed very easily. One of the main signs of grief that isn’t talked about much is exhaustion of the body and mind. Its something that can take months to pass, so it is so important to give ourselves this time. Even if it is doing something we enjoy, like a gentle walk with music, or reading a book. This time is essential.

– Gentle exercise and movement is good for the body and soul –

– More resilience –

Research shows that asana (posture) and gentle breathwork can improve our mood and soothe our nervous system. It helps us operate in the parasympathetic nervous system (a state of relaxation) , rather than the sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight mode) . When we practice this regularly, it helps us happier and calmer, and therefore more resilient during a bereavement. It also helps us look after our physical well-being.
Sometimes, the gym or strenuous exercise can seem daunting at this time, but gentle yoga can help us stay mobile, active and help us improve our flexibility, whilst soothing the mind.

– Meditation helps us process grief –

It can be difficult to accept that a person has gone, but they wouldn’t want us to remain sad and upset and continue to suffer. They would want us to continue living life to the fullest and remember good times, happy memories and celebrate their life.

There can be a period where it seems we cannot move on, or find a resolution. Meditation allows us to sit with our feeling and emotions and process them. It allows us to practice forgiveness, send loving kindness to ourselves and others and to find peace and clarity with the situation. it gives us space and time to process grief.

Some good meditations to try…

I am a massive fan of Burgs and his work. He does a series of free meditations on his YouTube channel.

This meditation is wonderful to do in bed or lying down, when feeling exhausted.

Cruse Bereavement are a wonderful charity to contact to seek support if you are having challenges processing grief.

https://www.cruse.org.uk/


I hope some of the advice here helps you to process grief and bereavement.

Do you have any advice for people? I’d love to hear from you.

About The author:

Aimee is a Yoga, Meditation and Move It or Lose It! teacher in located in Middlesbrough, England, UK.

To find out more, visit www.amalateesside.com

The importance of Meditation in Yoga – Guided Meditations for beginners to practice at home.

I often practice guided meditations at home. They are a wonderful way of practicing meditation in smaller sessions. Meditating in this way helps the mind stay on track. The mind focuses on the voice leading the meditation, known as a one-point focus. This really helps to focus and train the mind.

Yoga and the importance of Meditation

Yoga Chitta Vrtti Nirodha – Yoga is the stilling of the fluctuations of the mind

Patanjali – Yoga Sutras, Sutra 1.2.

As this sutra states, Yoga is the stilling of the mind. Everything we do from postural practice, to meditation and breathwork is to help fulfil this Sutra.

What are the benefits of guided meditation?

photo of a man sitting under the tree
Photo by Samuel Silitonga on Pexels.com
  1. Helps reduce stress and anxiety.
  2. Helps internalize thoughts and emotions
  3. Declutters the mind of thoughts
  4. Increases mental wellbeing
  5. Lowers blood pressure
  6. Invokes relaxation at a deep level
  7. Rewires neurons in the mind – changing the way we think and behave

Sometimes, it can be tricky to know where to begin with meditation. Here are some of my favorites to kickstart you on your meditation journey!

– Two of my favorite Youtube Meditations –

Beginners Spoken Guided Meditation – By Jason Stephenson.
This meditation takes you through a guided tour of the Chakra System. It is designed to help you feel balanced before you fall asleep.

Stillness with loving kindness Guided Meditation – By Burgs.
This meditation takes you through a Buddhist Loving Kindness Meditation.
Burgs is a Buddhist Meditation teacher, he is wonderful to listen to.

Do you use guided meditations in your practice? Is it something you wish to incorporate? I would love to hear from you!
Warm regards, Aimee

About The author:

Aimee is a Yoga, Meditation and Move It or Lose It! teacher in located in Middlesbrough, England, UK.

To find out more, visit www.amalateesside.com


Blogging – A new opportunity to work with us!

Blogging can be challenging to break into. Let us help.

We offer guest posts with a backlink to your site, as well as opportunities to backlink phrases to well-written content in our blogs.

If this interests you, please get intouch.

turned off laptop computer
Photo by Ken Tomita on Pexels.com


be brilliant neon light
Photo by Timothy Paule II on Pexels.com

Calling all Yoga, Meditation and Wellness bloggers!

If you would like to guest blog for us, or collaborate in different ways, please contact us on

Amalateesside@gmail.com

As Lockdown Eases – What does it mean for Yoga & Meditation practice?

AMALAwellness – Yoga in Teesside
Easing lockdown – Yoga & Meditation

-Continuing online and transitioning back to in person classes –

AMALAwellness – Yoga in Teesside will be staying online during the easing of lockdown. Until the Government announces we can return, we will keep Zoom classes running. This is looking like May 17th.

– What classes are still available online? –

Our classes will still run as normal till we can return to in-person classes. See our timetable below.

Yoga and Meditation Classes Online 
Teesside / Middlesbrough / Stockton

– Looking after yourself as lockdown lifts –

As lockdown lingers on, many of us may be feeling stressed, anxious or exhausted right now. Even with light at the end of the tunnel and the hope that the worst of the pandemic was behind us. If this is you, you’re not alone. The premise of staying at home should be easy, all this free time! No commuting! – However the reality is not as simple as that. Too much alone time can feel overwhelming, or underwhelming. Whether you live with your partner, family, housenates, dog, cat or by yourself. The first lockdown demonstrated to us that we all face different challenges. As things start to lift, getting used to the new normal will be challenging for us all. Make sure to look after yourself as we start to transition.

Combatting lockdown blues
Yoga and Meditation Classes Online 
Teesside / Middlesbrough / Stockton

Yoga, meditation, Gentle exercise, relaxation and creating a stress-free home environment is so important, now more so than ever. At AMALAwellness we have a regular class timetable designed to help deal with the lockdown blues, maintain good mental health and keep active.

– Transitioning back to classes in person –

There will be some changes to our schedule in person coming out of lockdown and moving out of lockdown. Our schedule is updated on an as-know basis and can be found here.

– Need to contact us? –

If you have any questions, please contact us on:

www.facebook.com/amalateesside

or email us on amala.teesside@gmail.com or aimee.bell@moveitorloseit.co.uk

Aimee is a Yoga, Meditation and Move It or Lose It! teacher in located in Middlesbrough, England, UK.
Find AMALAwellness yoga and meditation classes in Teesside and online.

Satya – Being Truthful (Yoga Philosophy)

AMALAwellness – Yoga in Teesside

Yoga Spotlight – Satya (Truthfulness)

Today we bring a spotlight to Satya and how it can affect our practice. Both on and off the mat.

– What is Satya? –

Satya is a Sanskrit word, translating to truth or essence in English. It is the second Yama which comes from the Eight Limbs of Yoga.

Sanskrit for Satya - Truthfulness, Sanskrit definition.
AMALAwellness - Teesside , Middlesbrough , Stockton

We should be truthful in thought, action and in speech. Our expressions and actions should be true, whilst causing the least harm and influencing positivity. What we say, both internally and externally has an effect on our mind and consciousness.


Truth -Satya. Yoga in Middlesbrough and Stockton - AMALAwellness - Teesside

– How often are we truthful in daily life? –

This is a really difficult thing to practice, if we pause and reflect most would be surprised how often we revert to telling white lies, or falsehoods. Whether it is in our mind internally or externally speaking to others. Exaggerating a situation, belittling ourselves, telling stories, etc. I am sure we can all think of an example when this has occurred in daily life.

Small, white lies can also have just as much effect as big lies too. Or avoidance of speaking the truth. Sometimes, its better to be honest and word things in a way to avoid causing pain if possible. Sometimes, its just better to stay quiet also, rather than cause hurt. However, this is all a fine balancing act, which is why practicing Satya is very challenging.

Truth -Satya. Yoga in Middlesbrough and Stockton - AMALAwellness - Teesside

On the mat, off the mat and Ahimsa…


We practice Satya on the mat, being truthful with our abilities in Asana. Realising our limitations and not pushing too hard, or not beating ourselves up about progress (practicing Ahimsa).
When we start to open up and progress, we realize a lot about ourselves and our behaviours on the mat. Rushing through certain postures, avoiding things that may be challenging.

It starts to transfer to off the mat too and when we pause an reflect we notice truths we maybe avoid, maybe we should speak up about, or we are aware of and should not speak up due to the pain it may cause. It’s like balancing Satya with Ahimsa (non-violence in thoughts, actions and speech).

Buddha Quote - Truth -Satya. Yoga in Middlesbrough and Stockton - AMALAwellness - Teesside


Do you resonate with this post? Do you incorporate Satya in your life?
I’d Love to hear from you!

Aimee is a Yoga, Meditation and Move It or Lose It! teacher in located in Middlesbrough, England, UK.

Find AMALAwellness yoga and meditation classes in Middlesbrough, Stockton, Teesside and online.

Yoga journey – What you need to start yours …

– Start your Yoga Journey …. Beginners Yoga and Meditation –

Congratulations on starting a new wonderful chapter in your life!

People decide to come to Yoga & Meditation classes for a vast array of different reasons.

From weight loss, to improving flexibility, strength, feeling a sense of community to alleviating the symptoms of stress and anxiety.

Everyone’s Yoga Journey is unique to them.

There are many benefits to engaging in a regular Yoga and Meditation practice, but where to start? Start your Yoga Journey here!

Whether you choose to start at home due to lockdown, or to start at a studio, these tips and pointers will help you in the right direction.

1. Finding the right teacher and style for you.

Having a daily practice and devoting your time to learning meditation and philosophy will facilitate positive changes in your life. Find a teacher who doesn’t have a gym focus with body aesthetics in mind. Find one that is focused on philosophy and meditation as well as asana practice. This will help to guide you in your yoga journey and aid in developing a regular yoga practice.

There are many different styles, some much more physical and stronger (such as Vinyasa or Ashtanga Yoga). Some styles of yoga are some are more gentle (Dru Yoga / Yin Yoga / Gentle Yoga).

Dependent on what style you are looking for, the elements of Asana (posture practice) , meditation and philosophy should be intertwined within a class.

There are many teachers and classes out there, teaching various styles. A quick google search can help you to find teachers in your area. Chat with them 1st, to see if their teachings and style is what appeals to your Yoga Journey.

I currently teach online VIA zoom (Hatha Yoga and Meditation) as well as Gentle Yoga, Chair Yoga and Move It or Lose It! classes. I also teach across Teesside in person, as well as being available for personal tuition.

My Teacher and Friend (Maria Dowson) (www.yogateesside.com) offers Ashtanga and Sun Power Yoga, which are a bit more physical but still wonderful modalities of Yoga.

We both teach at My Core wellbeing in Guisborough which offers an array of different classes and styles to suit all needs.

2. Finding a good quality Yoga mat.

There are many good yoga mats out there, but also many ones that aren’t really suitable for the job. The key is to look for non-slip ones TPE ones.

When looking for mats, check reviews and make sure they are non-slip, especially when you practice Ashtanga or Vinyasa type classes.

I personally love Liforme mats, but I know they are expensive. If this is something you wish to keep up and devote a lot of time to, its worth buying a trust-worthy mat. However, when beginning, a non-slip mat will suffice.

3. Bring a hoodie, blanket and pillow to practice.

Usually, the body cools down when we meditate and come into final relaxation. The mind will not settle if we are cold, so its beneficial to bring some things to keep us warm during this time. Also, its nice to have a pillow to rest the sit-bones on, if your not used to sitting for extended periods. Its also handy for poses when we balance on our knees.

You will be grateful for bringing these things when it comes to final relaxation, meditation and savasana.

4. Making your environment ready for practice , both mentally and physically.

Whether you’re coming to class in person at a studio, gym or community centre, or perhaps logging in VIA zoom, prepare your space both mentally and physically before practice.

Take time to arrive 5-10 minutes early, so you can settle down into the environment before practice (Both online and in person!)

Sometimes we cannot help being late, however being late for in-person and online classes can cause disruption for students and the teacher. Showing up early is not only good for our mind, allowing us to settle in and prepare for our practice (setting out our mat, placing our blanket or warmer clothes near us, say hello to our teacher, for example) it is good practice to respect our fellow students and teacher.

If at home, it is nice to have enough space, perhaps light candles, have blankets at hand. Making our yoga space into a spiritual haven for practice.

5. Come to class with an open heart and an open mind…

Trying something new can be scary, daunting and a little weird if its something we haven’t participated in before. However, with an open mind and heart, placing trust in your teacher to guide you… you will see how wonderful the world of Yoga is for mental and physical well-being.

Are you looking to start your Yoga journey, but don’t know where to begin? We would love to hear from you and help you find your way!

Aimee is a Yoga, Meditation and Move It or Lose It! teacher in located in Middlesbrough, England, UK.

Find AMALAwellness yoga and meditation classes in Middlesbrough, Stockton, Teesside and online.

AMALAwellness Teesside – 8 ways Yoga & Meditation improve mental wellbeing…

People decide to come to Yoga & Meditation classes for a vast array of different reasons.

From weight loss, to improving flexibility, strength, feeling a sense of community to reducing stress and alleviating the symptoms of stress and anxiety.

To improve mental well-being, we need to look at ourselves as a whole and also have a focus on physical movement. Improving diet (what we eat and drink- yogic diet) , moving our bodies (asana practice), practicing meditation and learning yoga philosophy. All these elements link together to improve our well-being and mental health.

The mind, body and spirit are all interconnected and cannot be separated. This is why a whole yoga practice both on and off the mat offers a wonderful holistic solution for helping mental wellbeing.

– What is Stress? –

To decide if we are stressed, we must first understand what stress is and how it affects us. The dictionary defines it as…

stress/stres/noun

A state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances.“he’s obviously under a lot of stress

synonyms:strain, pressure, (nervous) tension, worry, anxiety, trouble, difficulty;informalhassle“he’s under a lot of stress”

However, it means something different to each and every one of us and affects us all in different ways. It takes toll on both our mental and physical wellbeing.

There are ways and means to change our lives and our mindsets to reduce stress and anxiety, having a regular Yoga & Meditation practice is one of them. If we incorporate a regular practice into our lives, we can start to make positive changes both on and off the mat. Even if its a little habitual change a day, like practicing the sun salutations and doing some gentle breathwork, you would be surprised how much of an impact and a difference it can make in your life.

– How Stress Affects Us –

We are designed to experience stress, it helps engage our natural reactions to deal with situations (such as fight or flight, or letting us know something is wrong or amiss in certain situations).

However, when things become too much for us, it affects both our mind and body. It affects the nervous system making us feel anxious, stressed and uncomfortable.

When our nervous system is out of balance, we feel stressed, depressed or anxious.

Our nervous system has two main branches:
1. Sympathetic – Fight or flight symptoms (Survival mode)

2. Parasympathetic – Resting/relaxed state

When we are feeling stressed, anxious or fearful, our body and nervous system operate in the sympathetic branch of the nervous system. This causes to body to release stress hormones such as cortisol, which, when released too often, takes a toll on the body both physically and mentally. Being in this over-active state makes our mind race and causes us to feel uncomfortable in our own bodies. Often, our heart rate increases and we feel we cannot switch off or relax.

On the converse, when we operate from the parasympathetic part of the nervous system, it over-rides the sympathetic leaving us feeling more rested and calmer.

When we feel stressed and anxious, it stops us from living our lives fully. Leaving us trapped and unable to function how we wish to. It keeps us caged in a bubble of fear and often people will not change and stay in situations because of this fear that stress and anxiety brings.

The physical effects of prolonged stress have a major effect on the mental and physical body including (list from MayoClinic):

  • Headache
  • Muscle tension or pain
  • Chest pain
  • Fatigue
  • Change in sex drive
  • Stomach upset
  • Sleep problems
  • Anxiety
  • Restlessness
  • Lack of motivation or focus
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Irritability or anger
  • Sadness or depression
  • Overeating or under eating
  • Angry outbursts
  • Drug or alcohol abuse
  • Tobacco use
  • Social withdrawal
  • Exercising less often

A majority of these symptoms are invisible to the eye.

Yoga and meditation can help alleviate the symptoms of stress and anxiety.

By having a regular practice, you can start to change your lifestyle to improve physical and mental wellbeing.

– How Yoga and Meditation can improve physical and mental well-being –

1. Practicing Yoga Routinely has a positive effect on body, mind and spirit.

Having a daily practice and devoting your time to learning meditation and philosophy will facilitate positive changes in your life. Find a teacher who doesn’t have a gym focus with body aesthetics in mind, but is focused on philosophy and meditation as well as asana practice, to guide you in developing a regular yoga practice. Ashtanga Yoga is good for this. A regular Mysore Ashtanga practice helps you to learn a sequence safely and well that you can practice on your own in your own time and rhythm.

“Yoga chitta vritti nirodha”– Yoga Sutras 1.2

The aim of yoga is to still the fluctuations of the mind.

Improving fitness, strength and flexibility is a bonus, but not the aim of the game. If you find a teacher who embraces all aspects of yoga, it can really have a positive influence on your life and help you to still your mind and de-stress.

Yogini (2)

2. Asana practice – Moving the body helps reduce stress and anxiety.

Asana is defined most commonly as the posture practice in Yoga, where we flow through poses or hold statically for a set time. Ideally, we should be moving consistently for 30 minutes minimum daily, or at least 5 days in a week. It is important for both our mental and physical health. Exercise releases endorphins, which help alleviate both mental and physical pain as well as having a calming effect on the mind. It keeps our minds, muscles, body and organs supple; plus it improves our cardio-vascular health.

Having a regular practice helps us attain this, working mindfully with the body also has a positive and meditative effect on the mind. However there are other ways of incorporating movement into our lives also:

Walking the dogs for 30 minutes a day, or cycling and swimming; anything that gets us moving is so beneficial. Co-blogger Sarah is often out in the mountains to combat anxiety and stress. If we practice mindfully and with awareness, any task we do can become a mindfulness practice.

3. Yoga helps us reflect on what we’re putting in our bodies

Alcohol, nicotine, caffeine, drugs (legal and otherwise), processed food and sugar.

All these will have an effect on our physical and mental well-being.

These things give you a quick boost, then a low. We know they are bad for us, but a lot of us reach out for them anyways.

We should be aiming for things that keep us constant. Not things that bring us up, to bring us crashing down, be it 20 mins, an hour, or a day later.

Can you cut/reduce any of these things out your diet? Try eating more fruit and vegetables and perhaps consider a more plant based diet.

Yogini

It may be challenging at 1st, but you will feel the benefits later.

We literally are what we eat/drink and what we put into our bodies.

Our bodies use vitamins, minerals , proteins, carbohydrates and other compounds from our food to re-build our bodies from a cellular level. What we eat and what we drink is super important for our health, emotional and physical.

Both moving and diet are interlinked…

The more we exercise and move the body, or practice meditation and mindfulness, the more we tend to eat healthier and vice versa. When we eat healthier we tend to have more energy and feel like we want to be active.

On the converse,

the more we stay in, lounge around and are not active, the more likely we are to reach for food to match our mood.

When we are not exercising, we tend to reach for the processed and sugary food, or opt for takeaways. Both are important and go hand in hand.

4. We actively start to do things to Calm the Mind

We need to create space for ourselves. We owe it to ourselves to have calm periods of time in every day. Not only will we benefit, but others in our lives will too.

It is ESSENTIAL to create space to facilitate healing.

We need to stop being so busy, for our minds sake. One thing I and many others have found so crucial in reducing stress, is facilitating time into our days and into our lives to switch off and allow the mind to still.

Allow yourself some calming time, every day, with no phone, no laptop and no distractions. Just you, facilitating relaxation in your day.

It may be curling up on the sofa with your favourite book, having a nice relaxing bath or watching your favourite TV series with a cup of tea. Any time like this in your day is valuable. Cherish it and value it.

5. We reflect and start to meditate, hopefully making it a daily routine…

There are many useful guided meditation videos on YouTube that are great for beginners, or advanced alike. These will help you to reach a calm mind quite easily and with practice. It might take a few goes, but the mind is a tool that needs to be trained like any other muscle. We also cover a range of meditation practices in our Sunday Zoom Class.

Yogini (1)

Two people that come highly recommended include Jason Stephenson and Michael Sealey.

I would also recommend a meditation teacher called Burgs.

5. We start to do things that make our soul happy

When we have a regular Yoga & Meditation practice, we naturally start to slow down and make time for ourselves.

Do Yoga, meditate, catch up with friends, cook inspiring healthy meals, buy a smoothie maker. Read a book with a cuppa. Cuddle lots. Spend time with children and with animals. Finish that DIY task you’ve been putting off, book a flight to somewhere you’ve dreamt of going, say ‘I love you’ to someone and mean it, smile at strangers, be polite to all, kill folk with kindness.

All these things are guaranteed to be good for your soul.

Yogini (2)

6. We start to incorporate positivity into out lives…

Surround yourself with positive people, positive music and positive hobbies.

If your workplace, friends or family members are negative, it can be difficult to escape. Try not to engage in negative talk and remove yourself from negative situations as best you can.

The more you do positive things, the more positive people will start to appear in your life. Be it starting a new class, going to yoga, the gym or joining a local running club.

Listening to positive music, reading and watching TV shows/documentaries with positive messages and doing positive hobbies will all have a benefit on stress and anxiety.

7. We look to improve the quality of our sleep

Aim for 8 hours of sleep a night. Make bed-time a priority, make it relaxing and an enjoyable peaceful time. If you struggle sleeping, sometimes sleep music can be a great aid to getting to sleep, or sleep hypnosis.

Make sure to switch off from technology atleast an hour before bedtime.

8. Engage more and listen to Relaxing Music

Some music I like to listen to are binaural beats. They really help with relaxation and have the following benefits (from medical news today):

  • reduced stress.
  • reduced anxiety.
  • increased focus.
  • increased concentration.
  • increased motivation.
  • increased confidence.

It has been proven to aid relaxation and reduce stress, so listening to these whilst working, relaxing, or practicing Yoga and Meditation can help alleviate stress.


You must love and be of service of yourself before you can love and be of service to others.

How do you alleviate stress? Do you have a regular practice? I would love to hear from you!

Aimee is a Yoga and Meditation teacher in located in Middlesbrough, England, UK.

Find AMALAwellness yoga and meditation classes in Teesside and online.

*Some of these reasons Yoga and Meditation can help relieve stress are exceprts from a blog I wrote for my friend on stress management, which can be found here.

AMALAwellness ‘The Anahata Chakra’

Anahata translates from sanskrit as ‘unstuck’ , or unhurt and unbroken. 

heart-clakra

It is the fourth chakra and is thought of as a bridge between the upper and lower chakras. Moving from practicing on ourselves to sharing kindness and compassion with the world. The colour associated with this chakra is green. It is located in the middle of the chest.

It is my favourite chakra to work with, as it allows us to look inwards into our hearts and in doing that, create the space we need to transform, to accept things the way they are and to start healing. With practice, it allows us to forgive and make peace with our past, focusing more on the present moment.

Balanced…

When this chakra is balanced, we feel unconditional love, a lack of ego, a passion and a joy for life. We live our truth, feel no jealousy or envy and feel compassion for ourselves and for others.

Out of balance…

On the converse, when it is out of balance, we feel co-dependent, unable to cope on our own. People might be unintentionally manipulative and suffer trust issues. It can cause us to have difficulty opening up, relating to others and lead us to be withdrawn, defensive and scared or fearful of intimacy.

Physical inbalances can manifest as circulatory problems and lung infections.

How to balance this chakra…

We need to go beyond our ego and preconceptions, of our preoccupied minds and have an acceptance and make peace with what is.

To achieve this, on an every day level, is to engage with people, activities and places that we find inspiring, comforting and beautiful. Look after ourselves and others more, be open to giving more (look up random acts of kindnesss!) and be of service to others.

A key element is to practice meditation and breathwork exercises more also.

We all carry hurt and it is wonderful to meditate on this to forgive others in our life that have caused pain and suffering. It is very therapeutic for us and the people around us.

It helps us look at things from a different angle, of compassion.

It is useful to practice breathwork (pranayama) also to ground and calm the body and practice backbends in yoga, to open up our heart chakra (but overworking this can lead to purging of some unwanted emotions, so be wary!)

Some useful meditations and heart chakra music is linked below.

Open Heart Chakra ➤ Love Frequency 528hz Music

Heart Chakra healing meditation

Experiences with this Chakra…

As people deepen their practice, they start to realise the importance of meditation and working on letting go of the ego. When I do this, i feel so much more peaceful, compassionate and feel such love for those around me, my friends and my family. From a place of not wanting, or needing anything from them, just an unconditional love.

I see the beauty in the world and just want to be of service and a good person.

It’s not always like this, it’s normal to still get pangs of anxiety and worry and be affected by others actions, but it is something that we have to continually work on. When students put these techniques into practice, students report that personal suffering decreases day by day, especially working on forgiveness and looking at different viewpoints from other people.

There is a Buddhist quote –

‘If you truely loved yourself, you could never hurt another’

Which I connect and resonate with, as when I have hurt others, it comes from a place of hurt within myself… so I always try to see things from anothers point of view. Normally when someone hurts me, its because of their own internal pain and struggle, so it makes it easier to forgive.

A daily Yoga, Meditation and Breathwork practice allows us to work with this Chakra to improve our physical and mental wellbeing.

What is your experience with this?

Peace & Love

Aimee is a Yoga, Meditation and Gentle Exercise teacher from Middlesbrough, England. She teaches in Stockton, Middlesbrough and across Teesside. For more information, please visit www.amalateesside.com

AMALAwellness – Gentle Breathwork techniques- calm the nervous system & calm the mind …

In class, we often cover gentle breathwork at the beginning and at the end of our Yoga and Meditation sessions. Gentle breathwork has an important effect on soothing the nervous system:

Our nervous system is out of balance when we feel stressed, depressed or anxious.

Our nervous system has two main branches:
1. Sympathetic – Fight or flight symptoms (Survival mode)

2. Parasympathetic – Resting/relaxed state

When we are feeling stressed, anxious or fearful, our body and nervous system operate in the sympathetic branch of the nervous system. This causes to body to release stress hormones such as cortisol, which, when released too often, takes a toll on the body both physically and mentally. Being in this over-active state makes our mind race and causes us to feel uncomfortable in our own bodies. Often, our heart rate increases and we feel we cannot switch off or relax.

On the converse, when we operate from the parasympathetic part of the nervous system, it over-rides the parasympathetic leaving us feeling more rested and calmer.

How can we function more from the Parasympathetic?

There are lots of ways to switch to the parasympathetic, such as having a calm environment and home life, balancing work life vs home life and practicing yoga and meditation. However, today we are going to look at a gentle breathwork exercise to practice. This can be done anywhere, anytime!

A gentle breathwork practice – Part One

  1. If you’re practicing at home, set up a safe space and environment where you will not be disturbed. Perhaps, burn your favourite incense, or light a candle (I always like to make a spiritual safe space before meditating or doing breathwork).
  2. Sit comfortably, perhaps on a cushion and focus on the breath.
  3. Focus on the breath as you inhale & exhale – observe the lungs and the ribcage, what is happening?
  4. Start to slow the breath down for a count of four as you inhale and exhale, perhaps elongating the exhale a little longer.
  5. Place your hand on your chest and complete 10-20 rounds breathing like this.
  6. Return to a normal breath, pause and reflect – how does the body and mind feel after this short exercise?

A gentle breathwork practice – Part Two

Four Part Box Breath

  1. Inhale for a count of four, from the base of the spine to the crown of the head.
  2. Retain the breath for a count of four.
  3. Exhale for a count of four, from the crown of the head to the base of the spine.
  4. Retain the breath for a count of four.
  5. Complete as many rounds as you feel comfortable doing, remembering this is your practice. Take normal breaths when needed then come back to the practice. Complete 3-4 rounds.
  6. Return to a normal breath, pause and observe. How does the body feel? How does the mind feel?

These short, gentle exercises can really help to switch the sympathetic nervous system off and stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system.

Do you practice breathwork? Did you give this practice a try? I’d love to hear your views and experiences.

Aimee x

AMALAwellness – Teesside run Gentle Yoga, Beginners Yoga and mindful meditation classes across Middlesbrough , Stockton and Redcar & Cleveland.

For more information visit www.amalateesside.com