Last weekend was very special for me – my heart’s desire came true and I hosted my first Yoga series on the beach of Marbella with the help of the local Yoga studio and vegan cafe “The Farmacy”.
I am very happy that – since I only had 4 days in Marbella – the Farmacy’s owner Roya was open for my own ideas and suggested I’d do my thing. I had so many ideas for my thing, Pranayoga: meditation, chakra work, sunrise/sunset, Yoga philosophy, Ayurveda, …
And I managed to get most of my ideas into the four times 90 minute sessions! I created meaningful sessions started with singing the Gayatri Mantra and a 20 minute guided meditation in the morning, in the evening closed by the same ritual – giving the students the opportunity to dive deeper into Yoga philosophy. And I focused each session on one chakra and element, working ourselves through the lower chakras. I decided to start with the heart chakra (Anahata) to open my students’ hearts for our group energy and the following sessions, then continuing with the root chakra (Muladhara) and the next chakras (Swadisthana and Manipura).
For Anahata Chakra, I planned a Yin-oriented sequence with focus on stretching and opening chest/shoulders and hips. My intention was to make it as easy as possible for my students to sit and meditate for 20 minutes, since for most of them it was probably the first time in their life. By opening chest and shoulders, they could feel their heart energy which gives direct access to higher energies. So the energetic part was covered, and it was for the physical part of having to sit still in a cross-legged position that I included some hip openers.
In the first morning session, we started off with a Muladhara chakra meditation and intensified our perception on the lower back of our spine by tensing and relaxing the muscles of the anus. Then we gently started waking up our bodies with energizing Pranayama (Kapalabhati) followed by grounding asanas like the tree pose (Vrksasana) and a Yang-based asana flow sequence with core strengthening exercises like forearm push ups.
In the evening, I wanted my students to get into a flow and feel their Swadisthana chakra to connect to their gut feeling. So I chose to work with belly breathing and Mulabhanda during alternate nostril breathing in the Pranayama part and included some matching asanas like an intense side stretch (Parsvottanasana) and the spinal twist pose (Ardha Matsyendrasana).
On Sunday morning, we were lucky to have a beautiful sunset and we used the sun to spark our inner fire. By activating Manipura chakra with Kapalabhati, we could use the created heat to initiate a powerful transformation. I used the guided meditation to help my students to set an intention for developing a certain aspect of their personality. The asana part was the most challenging one in the series and I used a lot of twists to make everyone sweat.
After each of the sessions, we went swimming in the ocean and cleaned ourselves energetically. It was a wonderful experience for me and my students, and their feedback made me enormously happy. One student told me that she had a great weekend thanks to me and that it has been a great learning experience for her. She also thanked me for the exercises I gave her for her shoulder and my wake up exercises. Another one finally got into meditation and experienced the light-headed feeling of it for the first time.