Yoga originated in ancient India more than 4000 years ago. It is a holistic lifestyle practice and philosophy. The exercise component is just one tiny aspect.
In reality, Yoga is about transforming the mind and improving conscious awareness.
A combination of physical movements, meditation and breathing techniques, Yoga assists to create cohesion between mind, body and spirit.
Namaste aspiring Yogi! Welcome to my website.
I'm guessing you're here because you want to feel better generally. Maybe you need to slow down a little; or to nurture (instead of torture!) your body/mind. And, above all, to enjoy a greater sense of calm.
Trust me, I'm hearing you loud and clear. It's what we do, and we do it well. Regular yoga practice can help.
YogaSphere (originally "Enageist Yoga") opened in Port Stephens in 2004 after I relocated from Sydney to Port Stephens.
I am proud to say that YogaSphere is the longest running, dedicated yoga business in The Bay. Also, I am now one of Australia's most experienced yoga teachers, having committed to yoga study and practice in 1997.
My gorgeous home studio is located close to the beach and surrounding bushland at 18 Melaleuca Drive, One Mile. It has a beautiful and peaceful outlook and is only around six minutes drive from Nelson Bay, Salamander Shopping Centre and Anna Bay.
Yoga at YogaSphere. What makes us different?
For as long as I can remember I have been interested in movement, health, mindfulness, fitness and also nutrition. I regularly attended the gym, walked or ran everywhere, dabbled in yoga classes and latin dancing. As well as swimming for fun and extra fitness. When I met my teacher long-term yogi, (scientist and physiotherapist,) Simon Borg-Olivier, in 1997. Then, I quickly became committed to the practice. The benefits I experienced, physically and mentally, were tenfold compared to a life of gym visits, weight-lifting and pounding pavements.
Very quickly I became fitter, stronger and more flexible. Also, I was calmer, happier and sleeping well for the first time ever. (*see my personal bio)
YogaSphere Vinyasa Yoga Sequences Create Somatic Intelligence & Awareness..
Essentially, what we teach and practise is "movement therapy". Vinyasa means "flow" or "fluidity". Or even simply "dynamic exercise". Even if we are relatively still, there there is always physiological activity happening within our body. But, how aware of it are we? This is what we aim to build on with our sequence practises.
For example, even if we are holding a posture in relative stillness, there are subtle applications of "resistance" or "mudra" or "bandha". Sometimes we just observe through physical sensation or emotional reaction. Or even simply a "drishti" point, a particular spot for the eyes to gaze upon. This subtle concentration on particular body areas builds heat and improves blood flow.
It's easy to see why some of us have lost the ability to connect with subtle physical sensation. Our mind is busy. We over-think and overdo. We rarely tune in on a deeper level.
Sometimes we end up sick or in lots of pain seemingly out of the blue. Chances are that perhaps we unwittingly ignore the subtle signals we receive or miss them completely.
Generally speaking, movement patterns and somatic awareness are completely challenged due to lifestyle, stress and tension. So, it's natural then that we pay the price at some stage.
Yoga tailored to suit individuals
YogaSphere yoga sequences take the limitations and structural issues of most 21st century bodies into account. Incorporating proper warm-up techniques and offering modifications where necessary.
All students are encouraged to let go of that natural ingrained desire to compete, with ourselves or others. Our sequences and warm-ups are developed not only to include principles of modern-day exercise physiology, but to counter habitual postural and movement patterning.
Participants work at their chosen level, be it restful, dynamic or somewhere in between. You are the boss!
The invitation is always to inquire within; to engage the "feeling" brain (Enteric NS). This way, we find ourselves flowing intelligently through a sequence in a way that nurtures and rests the mind while strengthening the body.
This is a much more complete and integrated way of moving. It increases range of movement and flexibility without over-stretching. The benefits of this become apparent immediately. Vinyasa-Krama translates to mean something along the lines of "intelligent steps towards a goal".
Yoga is a Process, Stick With It...
Regular Yoga practise becomes so much more than exercise over time. It's an anchor during many of life's trying situations. It is a system of mindfulness which helps us become much better at reframing events in order to manage stress, anxiety and fear.
Yoga helps keep us fitter, stronger and healthier than before. There is ample evidence of this these days.
Yogis are trimmer, less prone to diabetes and other age-onset illnesses such as high blood pressure and osteoporosis. They tend to have DHEA levels (an age-hormone) of people around 12 years younger.
Regular Yogis are supple, strong and have an increased range of movement. They often live longer and /or enjoy better health and fitness as they age than the general population.
If you enjoy sports and/or dancing, guaranteed you can enjoy these things for a lot longer if you add a bit of Yoga as well. If you are in your twenties, thirties, forties or fifties and in pain while you work (and even if you are not in pain...yet...). Yoga can help. Things are far more easily managed once you have Yoga in your life.
Yogasphere is based in Port Stephens, close to Nelson Bay. Our gorgeous dedicated yoga space is located at 18 Melaleuca Drive, One Mile.
Private or Specialist Sessions - by Appointment
Nikki Shilling has an Advanced Diploma Health (Yoga) and has studied Yoga and movement therapy, Ayurvedic lifestyle processes, Anatomy and Physiology, Nutrition and Holistic counselling.
Private sessions, Yoga and Ayurvedic lifestyle programs, Yoga & Movement Therapy, Somatic Awareness, Life Coaching, counselling and general tuition are available by appointment.
One-on-one sessions can be an extremely useful tool for the beginning student and/or for those suffering from particular injuries, conditions or simply feeling a little stuck.
Learning how to manage your health is empowering and saves you $$ in the long run!