Author Archives: druyogi

Why men should do yoga

Why men should do yoga

The graceful and nimble movements of yoga postures may be partially to blame for the ‘women only’ label that yoga sometimes attracts. However, real men know better! The strength of the warrior, the wisdom of the ancient sage, the sharp-minded focus of the hunter, the firm, grounded stability of the oak tree; this is what yoga is made of.

It’s not surprising to find many yang-dominant yoga postures, intentions and visualisations in a 5000-year old practice that was developed by male sages and yogis. What is surprising is the imbalanced ratio of female to male practitioners today in Western societies.

Dru Yoga, one of the UK’s most popular schools for teacher training, has been the subject of many scientific studies that are pertinent to men; stress, back pain and illness in the workplace among them. Co-founded by Mansukh Patel, a doctor of cancer toxicology, Dru Yoga is a proven remedy for many medical and physical conditions that are often unknowingly stress-induced.

One participant of a recent Dru Yoga study within the workplace, reported: “At the end of the first session I went back to the office with a much clearer head and renewed vigour – I could think more clearly, make better decisions and work more efficiently.”

Jon, a Marine Biologist from Sweden with a high pressure workplace knows when to tap into his Dru Yoga routine: “…a three minute breathing exercise has more than once helped me to save an uncomfortable discussion from developing into an undesirable outcome, and a 15 minute session (in the morning) can transform my working day.”

While Dru Yoga emphasises flowing movements, directed breathing and visualisation, it is unique in that all movements originate from the spine because a flexible, healthy spine is paramount. The spinal wave and spinal twist are key features of Dru Yoga, as is a deep understanding of core stability. This makes it very suitable to men of all physical abilities. Many who begin Dru Yoga have very little strength and flexibility but with a regular practice they notice dramatic improvement, also in their general well-being.

Co-founder Mansukh Patel, born in Africa of Indian parents and now living in North Wales is the inspiration behind Dru Yoga techniques. His studies in camcer toxicity and osteopathy led him to pioneer unique approaches to health and wellbeing.

Dru Yoga is one of the few physical activities that suits men of all ages. It counters the compacting effect that other popular sports have on the body and joints; running, soccer and weight training for example. Some sports, golf and tennis for instance, turn the spine in only one direction. Dru Yoga promotes symmetry and balance while focusing on the spine, which in turn improves the performance in these other sports and goes a long way to preventing injuries.

To incorporate 15 minutes of yoga into the day as a compliment to other activities will reduce tightness in the shoulders, hips and groin and strengthen muscles in otherwise forgotten places like the lower back and knees. Yoga also has the potential to prevent and manage heart disease and is a known antidote to depression, which many men suffer without diagnosis.

Mansukh based his Dru Yoga form in the roots of hatha yoga and combines classical yoga postures (asanas), pranayama (the science of breath), mudras (hand gestures), positive affirmations and empowering visualisations as the recipe to achieving your goals.

Among those who have enjoyed the benefits are not-so-active male factory workers (OK, so they had the giggles during their first session but now look forward to their regular class) and elite sportsmen, including rugby and football players who include Dru yoga in their professional training routine.

Mansukh, now an author and motivational speaker, demonstrates Dru Yoga on various DVDs and in books on the practice. He lives by his word and daily Dru Yoga in his routine gives him the energy, vibrancy and focus to succeed.

Becoming a yoga teacher

If you’d like to take your yoga practice a step further, why not consider becoming a yoga teacher?

Dru Yoga is registered with the Yoga Alliance (200 hr course) and the Independent Yoga Network (UK) so you can be confident that your training:
•  presents a comprehensive, in-depth syllabus
•  provides clear, easy-to-follow illustrated manuals
•  taught by top international tutors
•  offers the recognition of an international school
•  leads to membership in a vibrant network of Dru teachers.

What makes this course unique?

Choosing the right yoga school to train with is a big decision and will shape your entire career as a yoga teacher. Since 1985 we have trained thousands of Dru Yoga teachers worldwide, with many hundreds currently in training. Half our students start to teach before graduation, helping to recoup their costs.
•    Start teaching and earning halfway through the course
•    Flexible course structure (miss a day and catch up elsewhere)
•    Indepth post-graduate programmes, including ongoing training in back care and pre-natal which can lead to a yoga therapist accreditation
•    A variety of payment plans is available.

What if I want to do the course just for my own personal development?

About one third of our students do the course for their own personal growth, knowing that Dru’s deep insights into the body-mind system will make a huge contribution to their lives. Generally, these students find the ‘teacher-training’ aspects of the course very beneficial. Here are some examples of what you ?will learn:
•    subtle energetics of rapport building
•    communication and classroom dynamics to help you in almost any interpersonal and group setting
•    fun, supportive teaching practices to help you deepen your yoga experience.

What homework is required?

There are two practical assessments, two written assignments and one lesson planning excercise. Part of the assessment includes a reflective portfolio journal which gives you an invaluable reference guide for personal development.

How is the course content arranged?

During the first half of this experiential course you will be introduced to the foundations of Dru Yoga—essential principles, postures, sequences, pranayama, meditation, anatomy and physiology, communication and teaching skills.  In the second half you will refine your understanding of Dru Yoga, and learn how to develop individualised therapeutic programmes.

When can I start teaching? Will the course pay for itself?

You may begin teaching classes approximately half way through the course when you pass your interim assessment. You will then have an opportunity to earn enough to cover your course fees.

Do you allow payments to be extended beyond the end of ?the course?

Yes, we always try to meet the needs of our students with a wide range of payment options.

What happens if I miss some course days?

We are an International School and our syllabus is standard throughout the world. If you miss sessions you can catch up in two ways:?1. You can do this locally in a one-to-one or group session (at tutor’s discretions – and there is an additional cost) ?2. You can catch up by visiting another Dru Yoga course elsewhere (anywhere in the world!) when that part of the course is being taught. Anyone for a holiday overseas?

 

What people say…

Dru Yoga is a fast track to feeling balanced and more at peace with myself after a busy day of demands at work. I can also use short sequences or breathing techniques to centre myself during the day.’

Camilla, psychologist, school counsellor, Australia

‘I started the Dru Yoga course for myself and never intended teaching. The course has enabled me to understand myself and discover the potential within me… I am now teaching and bringing this discovery to others – amazing!’

Keely, Dru Yoga graduate, UK

Enjoy the benefits of yoga and walking

 

Yoga and Walking

 

mouli-for-blog

Here at Dru Yoga, we try to get out for a walk every day – read on to find out why!

1. Lift your mood
Simply by heading out for a 20 minute brisk walk your body starts to release endorphins – or the ‘feel good’ hormones. This in turn helps us to feel positive about our lives and enthusiastic about our day ahead.
2. Get fit
Brisk walking is also beneficial aerobic exercise for helping to promote weight loss. By getting out and about you are naturally using more energy and therefore helping those extra calories from that sneaky packet of crisps to be used up with exercise – rather than sitting on the hips!

3. Get a change of perspective
When we are out of our ‘normal’ environment it becomes much easier to see things from a different perspective. Those things which seemed too big or overwhelming can now become more clear and can feel more manageable.

 4. Dedicate those positive vibes
When we walk with an awareness of gratitude it can become a powerful act of dedication. When we think about how amazing it is to be able to walk, run, play and get easily from A to B, we can then choose to dedicate that great feeling to others who may be less fortunate than ourselves. We can hope that someone close to us may also feel the beauty of movement today, or that those who are not able to walk will feel some improvement in their health.

Why not give it a try next time you’re ‘pounding the pavement’!

5. Keeping it up…
It’s not necessarily easy to keep up your daily walk… When it gets really busy at work, or you get home late and you are tired, a walk round the block can feel like the last thing in the world you want to do! At these times the best thing is to put on your shoes (without thinking too much!) and just walk out the door!!! You’ll find that once you start – it’s much easier to keep going.

Here are some great ideas about how to integrate your walk into your daily life to get you started!

  1. Park about a mile away from work – then you have to walk there and back again!
  2. Don’t get enough milk… (This is a crafty one to get the other half out the door!)
  3. Have a ‘walk buddy’ – when you are with another person you can help each other to keep up the good habit.
  4. Use the stairs instead of the lift.
  5. Walk the kids to school.
  6. Make it a family habit to go for a stroll after dinner every evening.

 6. Yogic walking?
The literal translation of yoga is: ‘to unite’ and when we walk with awareness we have a wonderful opportunity to be able to connect to nature and our surroundings.

As we allow ourselves to fully enter into the joy of walking we start to experience other potent benefits. For example, it can help us to tap into a more subtle part of ourselves, allowing us to feel more emotionally balanced, physically energised and to enjoy a deep sense of connection to inner self and the world around us. Discover more about yoga and walking at one of our yoga weekend retreats in Snowdonia.

If you are familiar with some of the yoga asanas and sequences, you will also find that to practice them out of doors will bring a added dimension for you to enjoy. Learn some asana in this blog under our ‘posture of the month’ category or visit us at the Dru Yoga Online Studio here.

The Cult of Yoga and Meditation

As a Dru Yoga teacher, I sometimes get asked if yoga is a cult. Yoga students have asked me if they are being brainwashed when they do a deep relaxation or a Dru meditation.

 

Yoga is one of the oldest forms of exercise on the planet, and because it has its origins in India, it can attract suspicion or accusations of being ‘cult-like’. Not everyone likes feeling calm and relaxed, and the fact that some yoga teachers include Sanskrit words or the odd ‘Om’ sessions can raise a few eyebrows from the ultra cynical.

 

When American Yoga teacher Kino MacGregor wrote recently in the Huffington Post that Meditation is in fact a cult and does brain wash, I’m sure that more than just a few eyebrows were raised. However, Kino writes that we need our brains washing because they are dirty – full of negative thoughts. Kino writes:

 

‘The whole spiritual path is a brainwashing. And a deep, thorough brainwashing is exactly what we need. Our thoughts are dirty. We need to wash and clean our thoughts and run them through the tumble dryer to make sure all the stains, dirt and lint are removed.

Think about how many negative thoughts go through your mind on a daily basis. Your mind may be sullied with low self-confidence, anger, frustration, lack of empathy, impatience, anxiety or depression. There are also the repetitive negative thoughts that surface when you least expect them to. These are all stains on the fabric of consciousness, and these thoughts need to be washed out.’

 

So our Dru Yoga and meditation practice can be a way of purifying those negative thoughts, painful memories and self-doubts which can bring us so much mental misery. I personally find that just ten minutes of practice a day keeps my thoughts clear and positive and I make sure I include Dru Yoga’s Energy Block Releases, The Sun Sequence, a few moments of meditation and a deep relaxation – after that – my mind feels completely washed clean and I’m ready to have a great day!

 

Read Kino’s original article here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kino-macgregor/meditation_b_2979013.html

Find out more about Dru Yoga and Meditation here: http://www.druworldwide.com/yoga