Happy New Year everyone!!! This month at ICHAS we will be hosting a yoga class at our campus in Limerick (in Room 10). Sara Cory who’ll be the instructor on the day has experience with Bikram Yoga, she has also explored the traditions of Ashtanga, Hatha, and modern Vinyasa Yoga. She continues to study Core Strength Vinyasa with Sadie Nardini and Budokon yoga with Cameron Shayne. She is now a certified teacher of these systems as well as Vinyasa. We recently sat down with Sara and she gave us some great tips about yoga and how it can help your physical and mental health.
Interview with Sara Cory about Yoga
What tips would you give people who have never done yoga before?
‘There’s a lot of different yoga styles out there so if you don’t like the first class that you try go to a different style. So try a few classes to find what really suits you. There’s a lot of different reasons why you might want to do a class as well. You might be addressing an injury or to de-stress or get stronger and be more flexible everyone has different body types. So don’t be afraid to ask your teacher questions. You might want to do yoga to open your hamstrings or to breathe better. They should be able to direct you to the right class.’
There are a couple of misconceptions around yoga. What ones do you see?
‘People are getting more and more familiar with yoga. It’s becoming less of a fringe thing and more mainstream. I do feel like most people if they don’t practice yoga and they hear the words “I practice yoga” they assume you ascribe to a certain lifestyle e.g diet and philosophy. So one thing I’d like to dispel is assuming you have to buy into the whole package, you’re just connecting with yourself and your body in a more integrated way.’
Research shows 60% of people feel stressed regularly at work so what advice would you give people to help them adapt yoga into their day to day lives?
‘Yoga is incredible for releasing stress and for so many of the same reasons that it helps athletes because you’re connecting with yourself and your nervous system it’s immediately dowsing this fire. The mental busyness that generates stress and this is going to sound very hackneyed but you stress out when thinking about the past or the future but immediately right now if you’re paying attention to your immediate experiences it’s most often not a stressful thing, there’s no baggage associated with it.’
80% of people fail with their New Years Resolutions so what tips would you give for people to make sure they’re part of the 20% who do succeed?
‘Look long term rather than short term. Don’t declare yourself a failure if you miss a target 3 months into the year or 6 months into the year etc. If I’m resolving to create a habit I’ll do it 80% of the time or 90% of the time and if I get caught out I’m not going to declare myself a failure. It’s about positive momentum and setting the intention. It’s about slowly and continually shedding things and not if you miss a class, generate more positive momentum, let go of what’s already happened. If you’re going to undertake a change can you see yourself a year from now 5 years still having made this change?’
What advice would you give for people to adopt from yoga straightaway?
‘Simple, breathe. Connect with the breath. Try and improve the quality of your breath and start to feel which muscles are gripping for no good reason. That’s pretty much a universal place to start.’
Want to learn more about the yoga class?
Here are a couple of useful tips to help you in the New Year. If you want to find out more why not attend Saras Yoga Class which takes place on Wednesday, January 16th. Full details are below.