I always new there was something very special about Baby Yoga. I had experienced this first hand as a mother as well as witnessing the emotional and mental support it offers to the families that visit the studio.
However I hadn't yet worked out exactly what was making the sessions so nourishing. Untill........ the 8th limb of yoga reached out and gave me a fist bump....not literally but metaphorically. As I said goodbye to my Baby Yoga class I knew something very special had just happened. There was a real buzz in the air because, I had just found my answer.....
So what are the 8 limbs of Yoga?
For the sake of this blog let's call the 'limbs', branches. Imagine that to reach the top of a tree you need to climb 8 branches. When you reach the top you can find a little something called 'enlightenment'. Now this word sounds rather major, but it doesn't have to be viewed in this way. Let's break it down to mean, finding a truth, an answer or even taking a little stepping stone towards the bigger picture.
Lots of parents that come to Baby Yoga are really very keen to enroll on the YOGI+ courses that follow. It's a lovely compliment that mothers want to come back, but i've realised it's much more than a compliment. It's the 8 limbs of yoga that have been at work. You see, during a session we explore some or all of the 8 limbs. Sometimes we are conscious of this and sometimes it is just a natural flow that occurs. I want to help parents to find the peace and magic that they experience in the studio at home and I believe that becoming aware of the 8 limbs can be a step closer to achieving this.
Here is a little break down of what they are and how they apply to baby yoga;
1.Yama - Ethical standards
Translated to Baby Yoga: Respecting parenting choices and differences and respecting your baby through loving communication.
2. Niyama - Relaxation
Translated to Baby Yoga: developing your own personal practices, or making a habit of taking contemplative walks....finding relaxation (with your baby or alone). I previously wrote a blog about 'Mind Space'.....check it out as it can really help with this first branch on the tree...http://colettemillar.wixsite.com/happinessisapancake/single-post/2016/03/24/Fashion-For-Overstimulation
3. Asanas - postures
Translated to Baby Yoga: the postures that we gently and loveling move our babies and ourselves into.
4. Pranayama - Breath control
Translated to Baby Yoga: Learning how to control our breathing to induce a calm and relaxed mind and body. We also explore how to naturally help babies experience deeper calm breathing.
5. Pratyahara - directing attention internally offering the opportunity to step back and take a look at ourselves.
Translated to Baby Yoga: Bringing calmness and love to motherhood. Allowing mothers the time and space to bring everything back to love.
6. Dharana - practice of concentration, which precedes meditation, we learn how to slow down the thinking process by concentrating on a single mental object
Translated to Baby Yoga: Yoga focuses on a single mental object. In Baby Yoga we are focusing on the physical and mental as we focus all our attention upon our babies.
7. Dhyana - Meditation
Translated to Baby Yoga: At the end of each session we go into relaxation and mothers are able to explore a meditative story with their baby (all accessible online for home use as well).
8. Samadhi - enlightenment......
Translated to Baby Yoga: Finding your mama flow and nurturing it so that you are able to feel confident in your parenting choices and your Mama Flow.
''We also might give some thought to the fact that this ultimate stage of yoga—enlightenment—can neither be bought nor possessed. It can only be experienced' - The Yoga Journal
Like Yoga, Baby Yoga will give you what you put in. So you can choose whether you tune into the spiritual side or not.
Please get in touch if you have any questions about Baby Yoga or wold like to book onto a course.