Its the season to ignite your inner light.

That was the true Light, which lights every man that comes into the world’ John 1:9 

Are you feeling luminous right now, full of life and light, or are the darker days of winter and the onset of the festive season already beginning to take their annual toll? 

As we enter what for many has become a stressful time of year it really does help to turn to a little yoga to keep our inner light burning brightly.  When this light is radiant and we’re in balance with ourselves, we can find our way through whatever comes along to challenge us. A sense of good health and spiritual wellbeing makes a joyful presence in our own lives and and is passed on to those around us. Yoga with its emphasis on internal observation, slow and dynamic movement as well as relaxed breathing and an accepting attitude, may be the near perfect activity for dark winter days and keeping the blues away. It also helps us to spend quiet time away from the hustle and bustle to reflect upon the deeper meaning of life.

Establishing a regular winter yoga practice is a way of drawing inward and aligning ourselves with the slower cycles of nature, as well as detoxifying the mind and body from the strain that the end of the year can bring. This winter try and step off the merry-go-round for a few hours a week and attend a yoga class that restores you back to your glowing self and who knows, maybe you will  get through the season without all the ailments and gloomy malaise of these long dark months.  In winter while it is great to try more dynamic styles of yoga to keep you warm and flexible this is also a time for resting and preparation for the year ahead so leave time for quiet restorative poses which promote a sense of inner stillness and introspection well suited to the advent season. 
Start each day with several flowing rounds of Sun Salutations. This helps to keep us warm flexible, increases our energy as well as keeping our body stretched and oiling all those creaky joints.
Gentle backbends like locust pose, cobra and upward dog. All poses that allow us to move stagnated energy from our belly up into our hearts. Backbends like these also help to uplift our moods and energy levels.  
Do less. Try to arrange your schedule to reflect the more internal nature of winter. 
Read more books, invite friends over for lazy weekend lunches instead of late night boozy dinners, or just take a few days off from your daily schedule to reflect and rest.
Go to bed earlier. The natural world is turning in earlier. Perhaps us humans should to. 
Eat more warming, wet foods. Replace cold cereals with hot porridge fruit and honey.
Try out the ayurvedic practice of self-massage. Choose a warming winter oil such as sesame. Massage yourself from head to toe in the morning, wait 20-30 minutes and then shower. 
Take baths with warming oils such as clove, amber or frankencense.
Practice some form of relaxation, meditation or pranayama. 

Looking ahead to 2012 I have two one day retreats now scheduled to take place. The first is on February 18th in Palace Garden, Notting Hill and my Springtime retreat is on May 19th in the countryside .  Visit my ONE DAY YOGA RETREATS page on my website for further details: I am also planning to return to glorious Euro free TURKEY from October 1st to 8th 2012. Unsurprisingly this holiday, which we have done our best to make as affordable to as many people as possible is booking up very very quickly so visit for more details and book soon!
                               MY 2012 CLASS SCHEDULE
My class schedule for this winter and for the start of 2012 remains very much the same with bookings now open to join any of my termly small group classes in January. These courses usually become fully booked so please contact me as soon as possible if you would like to attend any of the classes at St Peters Hall Portobello Road, The Apothecary in Fulham or The Music House in Shepherds Bush.  Priority for places is given to students already enrolled on the current terms’ classes providing they rebook and make payment before the end of the current term. (For details of all my Yoga courses and other open community run classes visit on my website  where you will also find details about 1-2-1 private classes, yoga in schools and workplace yoga.
I will be teaching all of my open community classes at Kensington Leisure Centre in Walmer Road North Kensington and also a number of classes at The Life Centre in Edge Street, Notting Hill right up to my 9am Kensington Leisure Centre class on December 24th Christmas Eve this year. Contact me for all the exact dates and times.  If you have any sense at all you will join me at one of them and come and practice what I have been preaching in this e-letter! I will be taking a break from teaching between Christmas and New Year’s Day and will be back teaching again from Wednesday January 3rd at The Life Centre at  8.30am and again at 1pm and at 6.30pm at Kensington Leisure Centre. Small group sessions start from January 6th.
 Thank you to everyone who has attended my classes, holidays and retreats this year and I look really forward to seeing you on a yoga mat somewhere soon.
“Seek peace and pursue it’ – Proverbs 34:14
Lots of love