More than a retreat, this is your journey

Reflections on International Yoga Day.

On June 21st, the world celebrated the 2nd annual U.N. International Yoga Day with events across the globe.

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Valentina Parmigiani (center), teaching at IYD 2016

Our Azulfit dream team of Emma, Valentina, Jamie and Liz made their way from Scotland, Italy, and Fuerteventura respectively to celebrate at Alexandra’s Palace’s day of celebrations in London and join in this important reminder of the role yoga plays in the wellbeing of people from every country of the world.

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Azulfit dream team Emma, Valentina, Liz, Jamie

Since that day just a week ago, big decisions have now been made with regards to the future of Europe … everyone has an opinion and at times like this it’s easy to focus on what divides us rather than what joins us together.

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Peace and sunshine with Jamie.

Whether you’re in or out, or sat as a bystander, is not necessarily important, but how we all choose to move forward from now is.

All politics aside, here at Azulfit we believe in a dialogue of peace, love and compassion and with that Emma shares her experience of what it meant to participate in a truly global day.

By Emma Malarkey

“International Yoga Day, London 2016.  It seems now like a dreamy haze in my mind, the multi- coloured leggings, the mass of Virabhadrasanas reaching into the sunny sky and  the sweet smell of masala chai being brewed from the vendors.

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Emma offering adjustments during her IYD class

Before the yoga madness began I stood quietly at the Azulfit stall early that sunny Sunday morning and watched as Yogis and Yoginis began to filter through the gates.  I was very much aware that I was teaching in the first slot of the day, the butterflies in my stomach fluttered as a constant reminder of that fact.  But I somehow felt a sense of calm amongst the excitement reminding myself that the aim of the day was to share, to connect and grow and most of all have fun.   This became my mantra, my way to stay connected to the earth and bring my focus onto my practice.

As I entered my teaching area, I felt a warming in my heart to see people choosing to attend my class, some familiar faces and past students had travelled to be part of this day and of course I stood with many new, smiling and eager faces in front of me.  I rolled out my mat, made my introduction and welcomes to the first class of the day and reminded everyone of our intention for our practice. We connected first to our body, then to our breathe as I silently repeated my mantra.

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Photo by Andrew Prod

From the first movement with breathe, I lost myself in the flow and 30 minutes later everyone was in savasana under the sun, birds chirping in the trees above with a sense of union in the air.  It was in this moment I paused to breathe and take in the energy.  I felt very thankful not only to be a part of this day, but also to be teaching and sharing which is what drives me to do what I do.

With our final Namaste we had broken the seal into a full day of Yoga-ness and from this point on flowed from class to class, enjoying, learning, connecting, growing.  In the midst of a chaotic London, there we were.  Taking time for ourselves to reconnect and breathe together.”

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Valentina in full flow at IYD 2016, photo by Andrew Prod

Just feel the love people… that’s all.

Om Shanti.

Jamie Isaac teaching under the sunny London skies, IYD 2016

For more amazing pictures of IYD, visit Andrew Prod Photography: http://www.andrewprod.com/international-yoga-day-london/

About the author – Emma Malarkey

Emma originally came to us from Scotland for a six-month period. She was such a popular instructor that we asked her to stay and happily she agreed, having been won over by island life and the friendly Azulfit team! Clients have been known to return to the island, just for Emma’s classes and her unique and supportive style.

Emma practises and studies yoga extensively in India and attends further training around the globe, experiencing various styles and schools including traditional hatha, tantra, Mysore ashtanga, sivananda, iyengar, hatha vinyasa, and more modern forms such as yin yoga and bikram. She teaches in the UK, Central America and in Europe between teaching for Azulfit, in order to further her experience and her personal journey with yoga.

Gaining inspiration from her varied experience, Emma has developed her own personal style for teaching. She enjoys leading a dynamic flow classes, with a strong vinyasa influence.

Emma’s experience, kind and engaging manner and enthusiastic nature make her classes challenging, varied and lots of fun.

 

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In categories: Beginner's mind Interviews Personal development Philosophy Uncategorised Yoga
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