SLEEPING DURING YOGA, PRESSURE POINTS AND YOGA NIDRA

Is it normal to sleep during yoga?

Being someone who has the tendency to fall asleep when not doing something of a certain engagement level can create a fair few problems. Dozing off during class comes across as disrespectful and uninterested although this is not the case for me! I’ve faced this issue from as early on in my life as I can remember. Maybe it’s a combination of growing up in an era where media is causing attention span to decrease, maybe it’s a genetic disorder, I don’t know.

It is close to the end of the 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training course and I have fallen asleep during Shavasana almost after the end of each practical class. I have also fallen asleep while holding various sitting and supine poses. So I research about whether it is normal to sleep during yoga and it is completely normal! (Phew.) It also shows that you are in a state of relaxation, a goal of yoga practice.

However, if like me, you would like to not fall asleep during yoga, here are some recommended poses.

5 POSES TO PREVENT FALLING ASLEEP:
Breath of Joy (Pranayama)
Upward-Facing Salute – Urdhva Hastasana
Downward Facing Dog – Adho Mukha Svanasana
Reverse/Exalted Warrior Pose – Viparita Virabhadrasana
Dancer Pose – Natarajasana

Besides these poses, I feel like inversions also help me to feel more awake. Although I still sleep in class, I don’t think that this is an issue that can be resolved overnight and other measures need to be taken as well. First and foremost, ample sleep. Secondly, a classmate of mine who practices qigong shared with me her knowledge regarding pressure points, saying that pressing firmly onto certain pressure points on my body would aid with my blood circulation and hopefully help me stay awake during class. This is similar to the concept of chakras that we are taught in yoga. Apologies to my non-Mandarin reading friends but I’m sure a quick Google check can provide you with information!

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Any points showed on the red and blue lines pressed during 7 to 9 in the morning would be the most effective.

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There are three indentations at the back of our head, those are also pressure points that are easily accessible to be pressed by ourselves to help relieve fatigue.

Yoga is about going with the flow and not fighting our body’s desires and signals.

Do note that sleep and yogic sleep (aka yoga nidra) is different. Yoga evaluates the overall state of the mind and body by the relative proportion of three inherent qualities: Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas. Sattva is associated with calm awareness. Rajas is the principle of movement and activity. When out of balance, it can lead us off on mental tangents and manifest in the body as twitches and jerks. Tamas is the force of gravity and gives a sense of groundedness. In excess, it can be felt as a restrictive heaviness, dragging the conscious mind into sleep. Falling asleep during relaxation practices is usually a sign that the quality of tamas is excessive or the quality of rajas is deficient. The practice of systematic relaxation requires a balance between rajas and tamas so that we are grounded and comfortably present in the body, but at the same time alert and mentally attentive. When both conditions are present, our consciousness can rest in sattvic self-awareness.

This Sattvic self-awareness can be achieved through yoga nidra, a state of consciousness between waking and sleeping that occurs during the stage where we enter deep sleep. The yogic goal of both paths, deep relaxation (yoga nidra) and meditation are the same, a state of meditative consciousness called samadhi.

I hope my post has been reassuring and informative to those who face the same problem as I do!

My Niyama experience

Niyama: When learning about niyama I wanted to put actions into them because I saw them as guidelines to help improve yourself and grow. Upon taking action and follow the five steps in Niyama, I really loved it.

Saucha: Clean Thinking,
To work on clean thinking I practiced meditation to help keep the mind calm and clear. I feel that the effects of meditation, especially directly afterwards. After meditation my mind always feels calm and peaceful, it makes my mind feel like it has been cleansed, almost like I pressed the reboot button.

Santosha:
Santosha for me is easy at times but I can also really struggle with it at other times. I sometimes can change from happy to sad very quickly and yes it can be very tiring. My body is so energized in one moment and the next thing I know, I feel sleepy and tired. I am still trying to find my balance and I try to help improve this again with meditation practices. Meditation helps when I feel stressed, sad and when there’s energy built up inside me. I now am working on the habit of sitting still for 5 mins and meditating when I feel these things and this helps me a lot to keep balanced.

Tapas:
I love tapas, I love the feeling after putting your full efforts into something. I’ve even put this into my asanas, I used to get lazy with holding poses, but now I struggle through and it feels so much more worth it in the end. Putting your full effort into something isn’t a physical challenge, it’s a mental challenge. It’s like doing sirsasana, if you are confident, and you tell yourself you are balanced then you will be balanced, but if you believe you will fall, you will fall. When you put full effort into one action, you need to tell yourself, you can do it!

Swahyaya:
Self-study is such a special time for yourself. I sometimes struggle with spending some time to myself these days, I’ll be busy, I’ll spend too much time with my family or boyfriend. But lately, I’ve been trying to give more time to myself. It can be from twenty mins to an hour that I give myself to do my solo time, read, draw, just anything that I enjoy doing alone. It feels good just to be with yourself.

Ishwara- Pranidha:
My purpose, as asked, “what do you have that people can take and take where you don’t feel depleted?” When I ask myself this question, now I think of sharing my knowledge of something that will help others. like yoga, I feel that the next big step in my life will be yoga. I want to grow and teach people what I know and make them happy.

Building strength with yoga

When I first began doing yoga I wanted to fix my body, my body has always been weak and scrawny. But as my body grew it required more attention and needs and I didn’t do much about it, for that reason one by one, medical problems arose. My immune system was very bad, my bones were tilting, I was constantly tired, stressed and never really hungry. I tried to eat but my appetite was little to nothing. I often got teased about my skinny body. So I tried to gain weight and getting fit. But nothing seemed to help I couldn’t stay motivated with routine workouts, going to the gym. So one day I decided to dedicate time to doing yoga. I had done a little yoga in my life years back, but this time I took it more seriously and I started seeing improvements in my body as I progressed. Yoga helped me stay fit and feel good about my body. My body slowly became stronger and less tense. My hunger grew because I was staying so active and everything began hurting a little less. I recently decided to take a big step into my yoga life, I decided to take on a 200hr teacher training course to firstly learn more about yoga and to share my knowledge to others by becoming a teacher. I think that for so many people they don’t realize that they have the power to change their lifestyle and body to a much healthier way by doing yoga. I hope to help teach others how yoga help me and how it can help them. I hope to still grow and become stronger, my yoga journey has just begun and so I’m so thrilled to see what life has waiting for me.

Moving Forward! Start a journey to a Yogi Lifestyle – 1 The Start.

Moving Forward! Start a journey to a Yogi Lifestyle – 1 The Start.

Having been working with the desktop for more than three decades, started to realized severe soreness all over from a Migraine, stiff shoulder, lower back, hip bone.

I wasn’t sure where’s goes wrong. Couldn’t even tell whether the soreness came out from bone, muscles, ligaments or nerves. Feeling more like the bone is the culprit as if like it has had not enough strength to support the whole body’s weight. Can imagine how clumsy I was with the big fat tummy which I almost changed full closet of clothes to XXL (my daughter said, it’s “Perth Ladies Size”).

Switching from clinic to clinic, from doctors to doctors, signing up packages of commercial massage programmes after programmes, swapping from chiropractic to chiropractic, countless X-Ray showing the bone crack and old injuries reminding me from those “hiking” “mountaineering” “Scuba Diving” age and countless “carrying babies” nights. None of these fully heal me from suffering. Eventually swopping from yoga classes to yoga classes with some hands-on experiences, I decided to settle down my mind to learn yoga in a much organized and systematic logic.

Initiated a thought to search for one that allows me to have an overview of different types of Yoga happening in the market, here I m, with Tirisula Yoga, learning actively from Master Paalu, Wei Ling, and Sri.

Here I go, enjoying the classes in a joyful environment, picking up bit by bit daily, stretch out slowly at a comfortable pace.

Moving Forward! Start a journey to a Yogi Lifestyle – 2 The ASANA

Moving Forward! Start a journey to a Yogi Lifestyle – 2 The ASANA

Yoga is a lifestyle,
Yoga is an ancient wisdom,
Yoga is a science that leading us to achieve the area where scientist not able to explain.

Leading a simple lifestyle, healthily, happily, is a most precious gift and greatest asset I received at the retiring age.

Started to be able to build up some strength, jumping forward backward until blisters all over my little toes, twisting my clumsy body to an awkward shape, till able to see the world upside down.

Daily Stretching soothes off the killing neck and lower back soreness.

Challenging and greatest satisfaction arises, ah ~~~ all of at once that moment opened up in my heart and suddenly non-controllable laughing out loud during the class, when I discovered myself secretly, still being able to reach a certain level of flexibility compared with some younger age.

A little consolation prize strike. Though Master Paalu was puzzled if I was possessed by some spirit since now is the Lunar Seventh Moon.

Moving Forward! Start a journey to a Yogi Lifestyle – 3 BANDHA!

Moving Forward! Start a journey to a Yogi Lifestyle – 3 BANDHA!

Wei Ling taught us the bandha.

Master Paalu made it as our homework.

I didn’t do it that day.

I was too exhausted for the start at the beginning and the next moment I reached home, I slept all way till next morning and drag my body to the class again.

Master Paalu reminded us to do this Bandha again.

“what so fun and what so good to play with the sucking and holding of our inner tummy” initially I thought. Only children will like to show off and play with that.

Then, in order to clock the 20 hours Teaching Practical at Home, I pull my husband to do this Bandha. Ended up, both of us rush to the toilets 5 times within that 3 hours. The last time was yellow and orange color.  My girl was giggling.

Many times, my little girl loves to tease me and giggle over my “hot air balloon”, that I had accumulated the “internal force” with all kinds of buffet foods for more than 20 years.

After reducing the size of this “balloon”, immediately I rush all the way back to the old closets and pull out my L size old cloths, including that 3 “Shanghai Cheong-Sam” that I had collected from Taobao over the stupid “online-order-crazy-times” and squeeze them all into the washing machine. Pressed 2 buttons. “On”, “Start”, walk away, go sleep.

Highly recommended, Sign up for the daily course. It’s only 3 weeks efforts.

Moving Forward! Start a journey to a Yogi Lifestyle – 4 The Theory

Moving Forward! Start a journey to a Yogi Lifestyle – 4  The Theory

Love the theory part, not so much that I like to read now, but so relax and easy that someone there talk and I listen, the science, the philosophy, the art, and the stories.

I had already much forgotten to recall exactly how many years from the day I enjoy listening to the teacher’s classroom teaching.

It’s back to my old golden days.

After all, after reading for so many years, my eye sights getting bad. Just packed up all my books into 26 cartons of boxes while preparing to move them to another location.

After this course, I think, likely will start collecting and pick up again, books on the Yoga’s title.

It’s pleasant reading on the Yoga Sutra, though initially having difficulties and hard time stirring my tongues over the Sanskrit words and trying to figure out what’s the meaning by reading the long explanation inside the manual, which eventually made me more confused.

Lucky enough, I managed to find and organized from the internet.
Well, IF, I meant “IF”, If I have the time, likely will add on to it’s German and Chinese or even other languages translation at my leisure if I can find it.

Here share if you need.

Here go we happy Journey to Yoga Lifestyle.

Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra Translation Sanskrit to English

 

汇编 Complied by Angie Chua 20190909.

My Dosha Smoothie

Smoothies are great, who doesn’t love a good smoothie?  You get to put loads of lovely fruits and veggies together, blend them up and there you have it, a tasty chilled drink that fills you up. So with my love of smoothies and learning about the doshas I just had to make a smoothie only using the foods that are related to my dosha, I call it the ultimate smoothie. Firstly by doing this I did research and took a few different quizzes (just to make sure) to know what my Dosha was. Upon this search, I discovered that my body type is predominantly Vata. So know I needed to know what foods were good for my dosha body type, Vata. So again I did lots of research and came up with a long list of foods for Vata dosha bodies. So from this list, I chose out a few things that I could make my smoothie out of.

 

The list of ingredients for my ultimate smoothie:

-Blackberries

-Raspberries

-Blueberries

-Strawberries

-Half a banana

-Avocado

-Cucumber

-Cilantro

-Oats

-Natural yogurt

-Coconut flakes

 -Almonds

-And chia seeds

topped up with coconut water to help blend it all together.

 

In the end, my smoothie was delicious and super healthy. I’m always suggesting my friends who don’t have a blender, to go get one! I rant on firstly about how love smoothies, especially a strawberry and banana smoothie, YUM! I tell them that making smoothies is really easy and can be really yummy and healthy at the same time. For me personally, eating food and trying to gain weight has always been a hassle, and sometimes it really handy to just blend something up quickly to give your body what it needs. You can even buy powdered nutrients and protiens to put in your smoothies to enrich it even more, but that isn’t for everyone. 

Future Path with Yoga

Today we learned 4 paths of yoga, these had actually make me think back a few months ago I attended a course called “20 years Journey”. The course is actually a motivation class that help us open up our vision. The topic mainly to help us indentify what is our changes or achievement for past 10 years and figure out what we wish to do for 10 years in future. That times, we are given 30min with some guidance to list out changes of past 10 years regardless good or bad, and another 30 min for future 10 years.

After 30min I write out quite a lot of changes in past 10 years that I not even realize until I list out. The changes not only the physical or any viewable changes like how many properties we have…etc, it also included experiences and knowledges. The most changes I have in past 10 years is actually knowledges and experiences, and this is the most valuable and also the only things that will follow us forever, whereas others might gone some time or some day. For past 10 years, I never stop learning and improve myself, especially in works. I can catch up work in short period of time, my 2 years of service in company is equal to some of the senior who work 5 years there. This is mainly due to learning attitude, not because I am genius or super clever. Therefore, when I work in the same company for more than 3 years, I start feel boring to do same job everyday, the learning curve become bottom neck, then I will start to look for others things to do, so that I can learn a new things. In term of yoga path, I think this should be under Jnana yoga.

My friends ask me whether I’m going to teach yoga after the training? My answer is “Not for full time teacher at this moment, part time maybe.” Most of them give me a funny and shocked face and ask me “why I take teacher course then?”. Well…taking Yoga teacher course doesn’t mean want to become teacher immediately, just like study Japanese doesn’t mean you want to move to stay in Japan right? To me to get a knowledge 1st, then only decide future pathway. Of cause, another reason is because I need a fixed income to sustain my living now. Yoga teacher might not be able to gain higher income at these early stage, but might be later after I gain more experiences or reputation. Anyway, no rush to be yoga teacher to me, there is still a lot more to study and to learn in yoga. YTT-200 course is just a starter, there is still a lot of yoga knowledge some where out there waiting for us to figure out.

I always believe “Practices make perfect”. I will consider teach for part time if have any chances and I’m ok to teach for free or for charity to train myself too. Oh…I won’t call this as Karma yoga yet, this is definately with condition or subject to my availability…haha! I probably closed to Jnana yoga stage, but still have to figure out the other 3 paths to move myself to another stage of yoga. Therefore, if nothing can be a barrier for us to improve ourselve.

Lastly…..After YTT-200 regardless become teacher or not, never stop practicing yoga and remember to do 5 steps of daily practice told by Master Paalu (kapalabhati, alternate breathing, Nauli, stretching (cobra, twist & forward fold) and last one is talk to soul) every morning… This is to REMIND myself and this is my GOAL.

Cheers!!!

Wei Veen

The Muscles and Skeletons Songs

After Study Muscles and Skeleton, I realize this is really brand new knowledge to me and I kind of like it actually. All the while, I though yoga is just like jogging, zumba…is just exercise until today. To become a teacher, I need to study deeper, need to know more than just poses, need to ensure student do correct posture and align with anatomy, need to ensure didn’t cause injuries…etc. So, Anatomy is very important.  But, to remember all the Muscles and Skeletons name really kill me, the names sound like Aliens and Dinasours to me… I’m not biological student and I’m not good in remember all the weird names as well. Oh no…How can I remember all the name? I think I must find something to help me remember all these names. So… I look for my 2 best friends “google & youtube”, hope they can help me.

Finally, I found a very useful study material, which is the Study Song. There is a lot of talented and creative people created many interesting study materials.
Here I share some of video and I write down one interesting lyrics…it’s really cool!!! This video is not only tell you the name of muscles, also it movement.

Thorax and Shoulder Muscles song:
“Give me a second I, I need to get these muscles straight
Find some way to remember where they insert and originate
The Pectoralis Major it lie just across the chest
Its goes from Clavicle and Sternum to the ribs and humerus
For shoulder flexion it’s a prime mover, that goes for adduction as well
And below it lies the smaller size of Pectoralis minor, guys
Which goes from scapula to ribs
So it by the time you don’t study, you throw your arms up in despair
The Pec major will help (because it’s shoulder flexion, get it?)
Anterior thorax muscles, Extrinsic to the shoulder,
all insert into the girdle, except for the pec major.

Serratus Antertior runs deep and inferior to Pec Major and Minor up above
Ribs to scapula it falls, scapula abduction calls
And it holds the scapula to your chest walls
I’d like to make myself believe that the subclavius shows clearly
Stabilizing and depressing shoulder girdles easily
But it can’t be seen in cadaver lab bodies
Posterior thorax thew is just as easy too
The Latissimus Dorsi lies on top (technically the trapezius in on top too, superior to LD)
This most supetficial thing work in shoulder adducting
And extension like in forceful hammering
From Lumbar vertebrae and Pelvis, And inserting at the humerus
It’s just a superficial as the Trapezius
Which elevates, adducts, depresses, & outwardly rotate the scapula
(and it has 3 sections, lower, middle and upper fibers)
Now the Levator Scapulae does what its latin name implies (elevate the scapula)
Helping Trapezius elevate, the scapula and inwardly rotate
The Rhomboids are deep to those with major and minor pose
to adduct and rotate the scapula in
From vertebral column’s start to scapula,
some part of that muscles is memorized by heart
I’d like to make myself believe that I know the upper extremity

Shoulder muscle next…extended and flexed
Starting with the deltoid muscle 1st, supplied by the anxillary nerve
With it prime motion, Abduction, extension, flexion
It’s where u get most of your injection
The Rotator Cuff is deeper down, that’s where all 4 “SITS” muscles are found
(Supraspinatus, Infraspinatus, Teres Minor, Subscapularis)
Scapula origin to the humerus leading if acting all at once they stabilize
The rotator cuff… the learning not enough
The Supraspinatus is aligned just above scapula’s spine
Stabilization preventing dislocation (downward)
It always keep the humerus in line
In Infraspinatus rotates laterally beneath scapula its sits stably
Teres minor rotates too, lateral moves, those 2 are hard to saparate.
Subscapularis last of the “SITS” mates, medially or laterally rotates.
Then teres major is listed next, i’ll wager it’s helper to Latissimus Dorsi…
If you’re feelings somewhat overstressed just recall these songs to pass the test
I’ve gotten bolder knowing Thorax & Shoulder, and i’ll remember for the longest time!”

Thorax and Shoulder Muscles song

For the skeletons, I found the “Bones! Bones! Bones!” Songs is quite interesting. Together with cute animation, I’m sure you can remember easily for all the bones name.

Bones! Bones! Bones!

Hope this is helpful for your study and there is more video and songs can be found in youtube.

Let’s “Sing” together. Cheers!!!

Wei Veen