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I tried Zoom Yoga and here’s what happened...

One of the best ways to become a better tarot reader and alternative therapist, is to try some practices for yourself. In this blog series, I review my favourite experiences with local spiritual and therapeutic businesses.

Today, I review a Yin Yoga Zoom class with Muna Mcadie from Balanced Grace.

One of the biggest challenges during lockdown has been getting enough exercise. Especially because I have been shielding, and until very recently, couldn’t go for walks. It hasn’t helped that chocolate and beer have quickly become part of my staple diet.

I had done face-to-face Yoga Flow and Crystal Bowl Soundbaths with Muna at The Yoga Hut in Meersbrook, Sheffield, so I knew I’d enjoy the block of five Yin Yoga and Crystal Bowl sessions she had created for Zoom.

Just to clarify, a Crystal Bowl Soundbath doesn’t involve lying in a bath tub made of crystals (can you imagine though?), but lying down on the floor, and allowing the soothing sounds of the bowls to wash over you.

“Sound Healing is an ancient form of healing that utilises specific sound frequencies to promote peace, healing, and balance in the mind and body,” Muna explains. “Sound Healing triggers a state of parasympathetic relaxation in the nervous system by drawing the body’s cells into a rhythmic pattern, set by the instruments and Sound Healer.”

Muna had sent the Zoom details in plenty of time and I logged on with ease. I was pleasantly surprised to find I was the only attendee. Her Soundbath events tend to fill up quickly, so I was pretty chuffed to have some one-on-one time.

Muna was cross-legged, with her bowls in various sizes ready to go. She asked how I was feeling, and I told her I was feeling stressed, and that my hips were a bit tight. She acknowledged this, and gave me an overview of the course.

Each session would concentrate on a different element – earth, air, fire, water, metal and wood. For example, water is about going with the flow, whereas earth would be grounding and metal would be stabilising. The bowls would help my body and mind to relax into the postures.

As the weeks went on, she would ask how I was feeling and use the appropriate element for that day. The sessions would start with me laid on my back and Muna saying a short meditation and inviting me to set an intention – which was invariably, to relax!

Then I’d slowly sit up and we would start some movement. There were lots of hip opening exercises. In fact, Yin Yoga is particularly good for joints and the deeper connective tissues. Hunching over a desk for long periods in my home office had not done my neck and shoulders any favours.

Each Yin pose is held for three minutes, which usually feels like an eternity, but Muna’s encouraging words and beautiful crystal bowls gave me something to focus on. There was always a good variety of poses, from challenging forward bends, to easier spinal twists.

Then my favourite time – relaxation. This was a chance to lay down, wrapped in a blanket and go into a deeper meditation. Muna’s voice was soothing and her words were reassuring, as I visualised elemental-themed scenarios.

Once again, she would play the crystal bowls. She would eventually quietly say, “namaste” and leave the Zoom meeting so I could take my time getting up. Which was a nice touch.

I got a lot out of these sessions – mentally, physically and spiritually - and thankfully, we never had any technical issues. Muna has done well to adapt to lockdown. It felt like she was in the room.

And although the restrictions are starting to loosen for fitness classes, I’d happily sign up for the Zoom classes again and exercise from the safety of my home.

To find out more about the sessions Muna has coming up, visit the Balanced Grace website.

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