Yin for Weekend Tonic ~ meet Ellen

Building a connection between like-minded individuals is something we’re passionate about at our yoga studio. “Kula” means community in the ancient and sacred language of Sanskrit. Not only do we provide locals from Hawthorn and Camberwell yoga classes, but we also provide them with a yoga studio where people can connect, share and grow. Our students come from all around the Boroondara area to sweat, play, learn and reach their health and fitness goals. Every day at Kula we come across individuals who have inspired us and continue to help shape our community; we wanted to share their stories with you.

Name: Ellen

Kula: Favourite style of yoga at Kula and why do you practice yoga?

Ellen: I started with Yin and quickly became addicted to the style and the teachers as I rapidly felt the benefits. It was always a relationship in the waiting: even my car registration is by pure chance “YIN” My working days are long and challenging, tenuously balanced with the duties and needs of family, including 2 teenagers.  Somewhere in that hubbub was a personal need to bring mental calmness, clarity and introspection as well as a physical unwinding from the posture of long days at the computer and microscope. Yin provided exactly that.  

Having started there I eventually got the confidence to sample other classes and have tried hot and power after taking some establishing basics classes.  I now love my double with Sharon on Sunday mornings.  She is my weekend tonic!  I have participated in many and various sports historically, as well as had my time as a gym junky.  I’m older (and hopefully wiser) now, and am no longer interested in a trainer driving me to exhaustion.  Following a couple of serious physical injuries I wanted to return to exercise, to improve balance and strength, but where I was the master of my progress and achievement. That’s exactly what appeals about yoga: so many options and no expectations or judgement,  just a sense of positivity about achieving what you can in the moment, on the day, for the week.

 

K: What do you love about Kula Yoga?

E: I love the space, the warmth of lying under the heaters in the large room, the sun streaming though into the small room, the serenity of the music playlist.  I love a cup of lemongrass and ginger tea between classes on a Sunday.  I love that it is so close to home and that I can be there in the quiet of the morning before the world and the house gets going on a weekend.  How could you not love the teachers?  All so individual but all consistently joyful, funny and supportive in their approach. I love it financially: I am a Kula tribe member, and though I have limited opportunities to attend during the week, I get great value for money compared to gym or pilates.

K: Is yoga your main form of exercise, or do you go to the gym, participate in other sports, fitness or activities?

E: Yoga is currently my main exercise although I still play social tennis and aspire to return to golf (maybe in my retirement).  My other passion is singing which includes an evening a week with a small harmony group.  I find this and yoga really complementary for relaxation, mindfulness and for physical breath control.

K: What is the main health goal you are focusing on at the moment?

E: Apart from the mental health benefits, definitely increased flexibility and better balance as a result of increased muscular strength.

K: Apart from Kula, where are your favourite hangouts in the Hawthorn, Camberwell or Boroondara area?

E: I love to shop at Coltivare and indulge in what’s seasonal, enjoy catching up with my sister over coffee at Lights in the Attic after our Saturday class, I have a child addicted to movies and particularly the Lido cinema, have been going to Celadon since we moved into the area 25 years ago and of course can be found at my singing school two evenings a week (Danny Stone Voice Production Ashwood),

K: Why did you choose to take part in the 21 Day Challenge this month?

E: I saw this as formalising my desire to try and control my work hours enough to make room for something else I was enjoying.  I was never going to manage 21 classes as I will be overseas in the last week of the month but the momentum had to start somewhere.  The short meditations, which I must also add to the “what I love list” are a perfect start to my day regardless of whether I get to Kula for a class, and short and sweet enough to slot into unexpected moments of quiet.  Fantastic.

K: What do you love most about the Kula Tribe?

E:This is great value for money even for someone with as little free time as I have.

K: Why did you choose to go on the Kula Yoga Retreat? 

E: Weekends are not always relaxing at home.  Its hard to escape the chores of everyday life and family to get your mind and body back into shape before to returning to the grind on Monday.  Sometimes finding time to fit in classes requires strategy not just enthusiasm.  This was an opportunity to free myself from domestic constraints and indulge more intensively in a simple pleasure with my close girlfriend and beautiful sister, who equally enjoy the benefits of yoga.

 K: Tell us your experience of the Winter Warmer Retreat in Hepburn Springs?

 E: What a worthwhile investment.  Even though we started out mostly as strangers, there was such ease and comfort bonding over the shared experience of yin, flow and the great vegetarian cuisine (thank you Spade to Blade), as well as all the pleasures of the winter countryside and creature comforts of Daylesford (shopping, cafes and galleries).  The accommodation was simple but very comfortable and our hosts were welcoming and interesting to talk to about their rescue of this old resort.  The silent walk through early morning sunshine, the singing bowl and the Hamam were highlights.   Highly recommended for those enjoying their yoga.

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Kula Yoga has a beautiful hot yoga studio on Camberwell Rd, Hawthorn, Melbourne. Kula offers ‘Hot Yoga’ classes for detoxification, dynamic poweryoga ‘Flow Yoga’ as well as a gentle ‘Light Yin Yoga’ option. Beginners through to advanced students are welcome to all classes. Kula also provides prenatal & postnatal yoga classes, and provides Melbourne workplaces with group corporate yoga programs to build employee health, fitness and wellbeing, and school yoga programs. Kula also runs an annual ‘Kula Cruise’ yoga retreat sailing from Bali to Lombok & the Gili Islands. Find out more on our website www.kulayoga.com.au.  Or follow us:

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