Friday
Sep222017

Xandra Fischer - Just start and keep going!

 

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Xandra Fischer. I'm an artist and work with fabrics. I make yoga products like bags for the mats and eye pillows. I do garments, home decor and textile art. The gallery work is art quils. I use things like batiques and hand dyes and I put them together in sort of abstract ways. I have two seperate lives - I've got the gallery work and then the boutique with gift items.

 Where are you from?

Originally I was born in Mexico and brought up in South America but came to Grenada as a child when I was 12 years old. Grenada has been my home off and on probably for the past 30-40 years.

How long have you been practicing yoga for?

I took my first class when I was 20 years old. Actually in Grenada is where I got interested in yoga. I was on of the few people that had even heard of it or did it then. So I actually was an instructor in a very, very simple way. There was a handful of women and some of them are still doing yoga. When I left Grenada I started taking classes. So I would say on and off since I was 20 years old. I took breaks when I got pregnant and had children. And then I somehow got hooked into the jazzercise thing. Everyone was doing it and you couldn't escape that. Then yoga came back. And ever since yoga came back I've been very regular with it. 

What draws you to Yoga and inspires you to continue?

I suppose since the beginning - since I was 20 - I was already inspired by the flexibility, the spiritual aspect and the strengthening. Now it's the mudras - that's a part of yoga. I've just been very involved with the eovlution of yoga. In the States and California there are always just wonderful classes. There I learned a lot in all the different styles. But basically for myself it keeps me healthy, in shape and flexible. Especially at my age because balance is very important and you don't want to fall. Yoga keeps me centered and calm. It's a really good way for me to deal with the stress of daily life. I hardly ever get sick. And I'm fortunate that whatever I do have is really minor. 

How does yoga influence your life off the mat?

It keeps me centered, calm. Trying to think things through and not jump to conclusions. Being kind, loving, open. Being physically in shape. Because what I have to do requires that I'm physically in good shape... I manage my apartments, my 94 year old mother, my husband and home. And still have the energy to do much more. I wake up at 5:30am, work and can pretty much function throughout the day. Though I do take a nap in the afternoon and that's when I stop to do even another meditation. I meditate twice a day. So the yoga off the mat is extremely important for me.

What’s your favorite yoga pose and why?

Child's pose on the wall intuitively came to me because it's not something we do a lot. I suppose there is something about feeling the full stretch from my tailbone to the tips of my fingers. Going into an inversion and feeling the blood going to the brain. The position feels emotionally calming.

What advice would you give to someone who’s getting into their first yoga class?

There are so many things - the muscular, the spiritual, the mind, the organs, the energy and so much more. If I only had to recommend one thing... One piece comes to mind: Just start and keep going!

If you could practice yoga in one unique place, where would it be and why?

It would be right here. Because this space is just the perfect space for me spiritually. The instruction is fabulous. Malaika is fabulous. I would recommend this studio and I don't want to take away from the other studios. But for me this just is a very special studio. 

Saturday
Jul012017

Vivien Radix - You don't have to be flexible to try yoga

 

Who are you and what do you do?  

I am Vivien Radix - a partly retired person. I still do administrative work at the Chamber of Commerce. I've always seem to have ended up in administrative positions eventhough I didn't study that. I studied international relations in St. Augustine after doing my first degree in Jamaica. 

Where are you from? 

I was born in England but left there as a very small child and went to Trinidad.

 

How long have you been practicing yoga for?

 

I've been practicing yoga for five years. Prior to that I did pilates. Prior to that I did Tai Qi. And prior to that I was doing airobics when everybody was doing airobics. 

What draws you to Yoga and inspires you to continue?

Well I realized that had problems with my spine and my back. I needed something that would stretch it out and align my spine. So I found that pilates ws very helpful with that. But then my pilates instructor left and needed to find something else to help with that. The first class I came to was a special workshop here for the back and neck and that's how I came to you all here at the studio. So that's why I need it. I like to take a break just for a couple days in between. I'm not like some people who can do it every day. I do try to do a little bit of stretching at home but I'm not discplined enough. I need to have a class setting.  

 

How does yoga influence your life off the mat?

 

Well it makes me aware of my posture. I had a bad back because of my posture. So now I'm more aware of how I stand and how I sit. I try not to sit too long I get up and move when I sit too long. I'm not really into to the cebrebral part very much. I mean I can but it's more a physical thing for me. Though the relaxation part of it is really good.
 

 

What’s your favorite yoga pose and why?
 

This is one of the favorite poses. I think I have found that its may be how my muscles and body are build that allows me to go down and do this pose relatively easily. I find I can go down quite well to do it, which is one of the reasons why I like it. And it gives my a nice stretch with the wide legs. Some poses take more of an effort and this one feels effortless.
 


What advice would you give to someone who’s getting into their first yoga class?

 

Well definitely try it! I think it defnitely helps anybody. It doesn't matter if they're flexible or not flexible. If you're not felxible it's going to help you become more flexible and loosen you up. It's definitely something to try.

 

If you could practice yoga in one unique place, where would it be and why?

I think it would have to be somewhere with a 360 degree view. Somewhere up like Fort Frederick so you're getting a breeze from all directions and any direction you look you've got a nice view.

Thursday
Jun012017

Neisha La Touche - Yoga is my space for self-love

Photo credit: Kevin Davis Photography

 

Who are you and what do you do?  

 My name is Neisha La Touche - I am a Fashion & Costume Designer, Stylist, Marketing Consultant and an all rounded creative professional.

 

How long have you been practicing yoga for?

I've been practicing yoga for two years. Wow! It has been quite a journey, having started due to a back injury in 2015.

What draws you to Yoga and inspires you to continue?

Yoga is a safe haven for me, where I can relax, be myself and find relief for my aches. The guided meditation sessions with Malaika are the best. With her soothing voice, she allows us to get into these spaces and block or sometimes focus on the sounds around, or she'll guide us through specific thoughts that calms the mind, body and soul. It's definitely a way to release, then invite energy back into our daily duties.


How does yoga influence your life off the mat?

As a creative person, my mind is always on the go and sometimes anxiety sets in when trying to develop a concept or complete a project. This is where the techniques and meditation excersies learned within class is applied to my daily routines. Even with any chronic pain, I've learnt the 'at-home' excercises to best help with that... when having trouble sleeping - legs up the wall is my go-to thing. Yoga has played a pertinent part in my life since I begun, and I'm now trying to learn a little bit more on the terms used, poses, etc. This is not just a class for me, but now part of my being. 
 

 

What’s your favorite yoga pose and why?
I love (almost) everything... but more so the poses that give me relief. I also like to challenge myself with the difficult ones, especially on the Great Yoga Wall. Hence why I've chosen Revolved Downward-Facing Dog. It gives a good stretch!
 


What advice would you give to someone who’s getting into their first yoga class?

I would advise to keep an open mind, because society sometimes gives this idea that yoga is not a good thing, it's not religious?! And they make it so controversial. To me its not just coming to exercise, but a place to escape and release the daily stresses of life. As Malaika rightfully terms it "a space for self love".

 

If you could practice yoga in one unique place, where would it be and why?

Ohh my... I think somewhere outside with a lot of natural breeze *laughs*... I love the studio but sometimes I would love to explore practicing in new spaces... Anything that is full of bliss, nature... like the beach, rainforest, some place on top of a rock.

Monday
May012017

Suzanne Paparo - yoga reminds me of being a little kid!

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Suzanne, I'm orginally from New York. But I pretty much grew up in the Midwest in Illinois. I've been in Grenada for 20 years.

How long have you been practicing yoga for?

I've been practicing yoga for nearly two years.

What draws you to Yoga and inspires you to continue?

The peacefulnes, the relaxation and it stretches me out, which is really good.


How does yoga influence your life off the mat?

 I think it gives me a little more peace in my life and more relaxation. I don't deal with things quite as hastily as I used to and a little more calm.

What’s your favorite yoga pose and why?
The wheel is my favorite. I don't know why... I guess it reminds me of being a little kid!

What advice would you give to someone who’s getting into their first yoga class?

Take it easy - don't assume you can do all the poses perfectly. And it's okay.


If you could practice yoga in one unique place, where would it be and why?

Mhhh oh gosh... on some high mountain somewhere, where nobody is. I don't know the exact place but some high mountain.
Friday
Mar312017

Bernelle Du Bois - How yoga brings calm to her life

 

 

Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Bernelle Du Bois and I'm an Accounts Clerk. That's my job basically from Monday to Friday - eight to four.

How long have you been practicing yoga for?

I have been practicing yoga for probably at least eight years.

What draws you to Yoga and inspires you to continue?

The sciatic nerve - that problem. The idea was to find poses or exercises that could help strengthen the nerves and the lower back. Just to ease of the cramps and the tightness. So I discovered yoga and I stuck to it and it has helped over the last few years. And it has also helped me to relax and calm my thoughts a little after a long day of work.

How does yoga influence your life off the mat?

Off the mat it does help a lot. If I'm having problems sleeping at night I will try a little meditating or legs up the wall. Anything that I can focus on whether it is my breathing, how my toes feel, my fingers feel to distract the thoughts from every day action. You know, what I need to do. What I don't need to do. The to-do-list. So meditating and certain poses again help off the mat for relaxing sake. And it does bring a sense of calm when I do practice it.

What’s your favorite yoga pose and why?
I like and selected eagle pose because it stretches the muscles in the shoulders, which is necessary since tension often builds up in those areas. Also, it tests my ability to balance while stretching the back. Personally, I think it's a combination pose that can be achieved by all yogis once they're comfortable balancing.

What advice would you give to someone who’s getting into their first yoga class?

Don't push it too hard. Don't expect to get it perfect in the first try. You need to gradually find what's comfortable for your body and listen to how your body feels and you will eventually get into the pose. So it's not about getting it perfect the first try. It's just basic and bit by bit you will be better and better at what you do. That would be my advice.


If you could practice yoga in one unique place, where would it be and why?

Oh that would be on the beach or anywhere that has a kind of earthy, flowery garden scene or landscape. That would be the two places - by a beach or a forest. Maybe even by a river. But my most favorite is the beach. I would say my favorite beach is BBC beach because it is usually very calm, there are a lot of trees and a lot of shade, a little bit windy and as I said very calm!