Q: What is at the heart of Zen Yoga?
'Mindfulness' of both body and mind is at the heart of Zen Yoga, together with alignment and flow of energy in the body.
Q: How is Zen Yoga with The Cat Pose different?
Zen Yoga by The Cat Pose focusses on the gentleness of yoga, teaching muscles to stretch and strengthen in a relaxed state gradually over time. With her own practise as a meditative Buddhist since the age of 16 and experience of working with people with health conditions, May's teaching incorporates aspects of Zen's living mindfulness, meditative Vajrayana visualisation and focus on mantras as well as mudras to achieve an equilibrium of mind, energy and body. It is essentially about awareness and achieving harmony. Listening to your body, being aware of what you need at that very moment and working at a pace right for you.
Q: Is Zen Yoga right for me?
Zen Yoga can be practised by anyone open to achieving a flowing equilibrium of body, energy and mind that is based on the Buddhist school of thought. From beginners to more seasoned yogis, some of our students started Zen Yoga with conditions such as back pain, overactive thyroid, stress, emotional anxiety, ME and even recovery from cancer. As it is particularly effective for those who need a more gentle form of exercise focused on slow stretching, restoration and relaxation in order to build resilience aganist stress, reduce body tension or anxiety, and encourage healing, but at the same time allowing an opportunity to be spiritual and more mindful.
Q: What should I wear for a Zen Yoga class?
Comfortable clothing that will allow you to stretch but not too loose in becoming a hazard to movement. As a safety precaution, you will be requested to remove any loose or dangly jewellery and socks during class.
Q: What will I need to bring to a Zen Yoga class?
Please bring your yoga mat with you! (A blanket for Savasana, or warm clothing to prevent getting cold during yoga and water to keep hydrated)
Q: Can I eat right before a class?
It is advisable to leave a gap of at least 2 hours between eating and class.
Q: Will I need yoga experience to join a Zen Yoga class?
All are welcome to join! At The Cat Pose we believe yoga is a journey that flows and changes to your needs at that present moment in time. Whether you are completely new or a seasoned yogi, you will still benefit in practising the gentleness of Zen Yoga.
Q: What are the possible after effects of a Zen Yoga session by The Cat Pose?
Some of our students have mentioned that a warning of 'not operating heavy machinery and making time for a nap' after The Cat Pose's Zen Yoga should be necessary! As we tend to do some gentle movements with the spine that may activate a detoxing process, we usually advise students to drink plenty of water, avoid caffeine (Cammomile, Pepermint or Nettle teas may be helpful), and make time to rest after the session or try to sleep by 11pm that night.
Q: How best to progress after some sessions with The Cat Pose?
For those wanting to make a further commitment, there are several options to consider:
Start to commit by attending our sessions regularly with a 'Class Pass' or course to learn how to build your own Zen Yoga or mindfulness practice
Investing in a private session tailored to your health needs, aimed at reaching your health goals and progressing in your personal practice
Setting up your own 'Mindfulness' space, starting a meditation practice, and Savasana (relaxation) schedule
Bringing our corporate 'Resilience Training' programme to your work place