“Dynamic Yoga Training Method is a modern postural yoga practise which nourishes and reconditions the body through the repetition of gentle, natural movements. You don’t need to be flexible or strong to do it, just willing to enquire into and open to experience the intelligence of your own body, however it is right now.” Rob Gretton.
High intensity boot camps, marathon training, high energy Zumba, fast paced spin classes and running up 200 steps just so you can pretend to be Rocky when you get to the top (we’ve all done it). All of these things are great, but what about the slower side of fitness? What about also taking the time to be gentle with ourselves. I am going to be trying out Dynamic yoga over the next month with the marvellous Mr Rob Gretton as my teacher, and will be reporting back on my experience in weekly instalments.
I have only ever dabbled in yoga before so I was a bit apprehensive about my first class. I had nothing to worry about though, I left feeling the most relaxed I had been for years!
Our first lesson was purely guided relaxation. I laid down on a mat with a warm fleece blanket over me (what’s not to love), whilst Rob spoke, quietly leading us into relaxation. At first I wondered what the point of all of this was, but 5 minutes in, it all became clear. From the tips of my toes all the way to the top of my head, I was guided by Rob’s voice to gently and subtly stretch every part of my body. He talked about becoming aware of my breath and to synchronise it with the soft stretching of my limbs, and to just concentrate on being in the now. We did this for an hour. It felt like 10 minutes.
It was awesome! I think we sometimes forget the importance of properly relaxing. How many of us genuinely do? How many of us can stop for a moment without having 10 billion thoughts and anxieties running through our mind. I found that guided relaxation kept my mind clear and on the task of not having a task at all, and also of just being absolutely o.k in that moment. It was wonderful. For the first time in a long time my mind had the chance to be still. I felt like I had been able to press the pause button for a while. Pure bliss.
Dynamic Yoga lesson 1.
Oh the Joy! Rob started the class with some more relaxation and breathing exercises and we got to lay down again. Once relaxed, from the laying down position we started with some gentle movements. Rob explained that there is no absolute correct way and that you must let your body do what it feels is right. Dynamic yoga is not meant to hurt or stretch you to your limits. All of the movements that we did today were very gentle. Starting with raising our knees and then bringing them in to our chest every time we inhaled and bringing them back vertically over our hips on exhaling, bringing our knees a little further in on each breath rotation. Then raising our arms just a fraction with each inhale then back down on each exhale, a little further each time so that eventually we were bringing our arms over our heads and resting them on the floor behind us on the inhale, and then bringing them back over and to our sides on the exhale. Or you could breathe the other way round, whatever feels right for you and your body. We then went on to stretching our backs right up to our skull all whilst still breathing at our own speed, we then did all of those things together. The gentle control and stretching of the whole body felt wonderful. Again, throughout the whole class my mind was still. The last 5 minutes were spent laying in silence, completely relaxed. I am very much looking forward to my next lesson. The importance of gentle stretching, releasing tension and gaining a quiet mind is becoming very obvious to me. I think I may already be hooked and I haven’t even scratched the surface!
This week, after our gently warm up, we were up on our hands and knees practicing the basics of moon salutations and we learnt the meaning of ‘Lengthening and broadening’ instead of ’stretching’. I felt the subtle and gentle movements deep in my muscles and the effect doing this to one part of my body had on the other parts. Once again we synchronised our breathing to each movement. Starting in a Child’s pose – knees bent to the floor, chest over knees, head on the floor, arms out in front of us, completely relaxed – we slowly moved to all fours and then went from all fours gently down so we were completely on our fronts, then we went from here back to all fours and then back down into Child’s pose, and so the cycle began, we did this for some time, Like a slow wave, always aware of our breathing and of our lengthening and broadenings. We soon incorporated a more gentle version of the famous downward dog pose, and stepping forward to standing all the while making sure our body was supporting its self. All the movements and combinations repeated like a wave along with relaxed breathing.
I have once again thoroughly enjoyed this week. I felt it much more on my muscles, especially my thighs, and I am looking forward to them becoming more toned and stronger (as Rob has told me, a nice side effect to Dynamic Yoga). I have found that I am much more aware of my body, and have been remembering to lengthen and broaden whilst at home. Mentally I have been remembering to be aware of my breathing which has enabled me to become more relaxed if I’ve felt stressed or anxious, which seems to be a lot less. Maybe it’s the Dynamic Yoga… Maybe it isn’t. Either way, I’m not stopping.
For class times and to find out more about Rob and Dynamic yoga please visit: www.dynamicyogasouthend.com
Organiser of what sometimes seems the entire universe. Mum to an 8 year old boy, and the wife to a 39 year old computer nerd.
I like designing furniture, have an overactive imagination, love bright colours, can play one thing very badly on the guitar, and spent the most part of my time during childbirth wearing a cape!
For my very first review for Essex Mums I will be Trying out Dynamic Yoga. I will be starting from the very beginning and I hope to get an insight into it’s benefits, and look into how my body and mind changes throughout the weeks ahead.