Yoga is well known for being one of the best ways to address stress. Regular practice has been shown to lower both blood pressure and heart rate as well increasing feelings of calm and engendering a sense of wellbeing. This month I caught up with local yoga teacher Lesley Doveton.
Lesley runs a number of different classes in various locations near Uxbridge and if you’ve always liked the idea of trying yoga but never quite got round to it (or felt a bit intimated by it), one of Lesley’s gentle or general classes might be a great place to start. She also offers one to one tuition if you prefer the privacy of practising in your own home.
Lesley first got into yoga in the 1970s when she was in her late teens and would attend classes with her mum, best friend and best friend’s mum. After giving birth to her first daughter thirty years’ ago she started attending classes regularly and hasn’t stopped since. She trained formally as a yoga teacher in the 1990’s and has been helping people discover how yoga can make a positive impact to their lives since then. She has a big following in the Uxbridge area and many of my patients swear by the restorative powers of her classes.
The latest addition to Lesley’s classes is a ‘Breathe and Relax” class. Lesley’s reason for starting this class was that she felt that regardless whether people do yoga or not, everyone should learn how to breathe properly so they can experience the health benefits it can bring. Lesley tells me she once came across a quote which said “control your breathing, control your life” which really resonated with her (in fact, she found that controlled breathing really helped whilst giving birth to her second daughter). Lesley also talks about how different types of breathing can bring different health benefits - for example, a cooling breath can be very useful in addressing menopausal symptoms like hot flashes. She also explains how learning to breathe with your whole body can really help to calm the body and mind - the prefect antidote to our busy, stressed out lives. So, if you’re still feeling intimidated by a proper yoga class, a breathe and relax class might be the perfect place to start!
You can find more information about all of Lesley’s classes (and her plans for launching some new year courses) on her website: www.lesleydovetonyoga.com