As many of us use this time to heal and nourish our minds and bodies, we hope to provide you with the means to rest, restore and care for your wellness in a holistic and effective way. Achieving this solely from the comfort of our homes is likely to be new for most of us, but it is possible to do so. We have turned to the knowledge and experience of our specialist wellness practitioners in the Cotswolds to provide their tips on how we can live a calmer, yogic lifestyle at home.
Akshai Narain - resident yoga and healing practitioner at our Cotswolds Wellness Spa
Akshai was a teaching yogi in the Indian Himalayas before crossing the waters to England. His classes use traditional hatha yoga methods with a focus on breath. Coordination of body and mind is emphasised over speed. He studied business strategy and worked with management consulting firms, but found his true calling in the depths of yoga and wellness. His passion is to sync ageless wisdom with our modern day world.
Akshai’s five ways to live like a yogi
START THE DAY IN STILLNESS: As soon as you wake up in morning, sit in stillness in bed for a few minutes. Take three slow and long breaths whilst inwardly repeating to yourself: “I am physically, mentally and emotionally healthy.” Repeat this mentally three times with full conviction and belief to plant the seed for the day ahead.
CHECK IN WITH YOUR BODY: Ensure you are allocating time to rest in the day. Lie down on a soft surface such as a yoga mat for five minutes in shavasana pose with your arms slightly away from the body, palms facing up. Keep your feet apart so that the thighs are not in contact and your toes are falling out to the sides. Respond to your body and make any physical adjustments so that there is no tension. Once you are comfortable, start a mental scan of each of your body parts. Take your awareness to a part of the body and, without moving it, give a mental instruction for it to relax - if it helps you can voice this command out loud. Start from the head and move along down to the feet. The full practice should take five minutes.
EAT TO NOURISH: Enjoy one meal of the day by yourself - no phones! Be in silence; be with yourself. Focus all of your awareness on the process of eating and chew fully. Pay attention to the food that is entering your body to nourish it.
SEEK CONNECTION: We are social beings and positive connections with other people nourish our soul. If you are living with family or friends, make sure you enjoy one meal of the day with them - phones not allowed. If you are living alone, call a family member or friend each day and talk to them for at least five minutes.
FINISH THE DAY IN PEACE: When you are ready to sleep, sit in bed for few minutes. Take a moment to recollect what happened throughout the day - run through the events in your mind as if you are watching a movie. There is no need to analyse or judge these events consciously: allow the subconscious to do so as you reel them off in your mind’s eye. Take three slow and long breaths and you are ready to sleep.
Equipment that can help to settle the mind and body
It is important to wear comfortable clothing that you can move freely and sit still in. Even if you are meditating at home and don't have to travel to a studio for a guided session, the simple act of changing into more comfortable clothing will prepare your mind for stillness.
Yoga mat or soft surface
Stepping onto a yoga mat can instantly transport you to a place of calm and is the ideal surface on which to practice gentle movement such as yoga or meditation. If you don't have a yoga mat to hand, find a soft surface such as carpet that will comfortably support your body whilst sitting still.
A pillow or bolster
For many of us, our bodies may not be used to sitting in stillness for extended periods of time. Using a pillow or a bolster to elevate the hips when sitting in Sukhasana (cross-legged pose) can provide additional support and comfort whilst adjusting to the new practice.
A scented candle
Scent has the wonderful ability to calm the body and mind. Lighting a candle to gently scent the space where you will be meditating is an effective way to intensify the experience. Light a Bamford Frankincense Candle to encourage easy breathing, diminish feelings of stress and improve concentration and memory.
Laptop with wifi connection
There are a lot of great online resources out there to provide guided meditation and breathing exercises. Our online timetable offers a variety of classes such as yoga, Pilates as well as gentler meditation sessions that can help to calm the mind and body.
Enhance your meditation
Join us for our Virtual Wellness Retreat
Our first ever Virtual Wellness Retreat is designed to help you target four key aspects of your well-being: strength, energy, nourishment and peace. We invite you to join us for a restorative day of connection, relaxation and self-reflection hosted virtually by our team of wellness practitioners from the Cotswolds. Join us on a day-long journey to strengthen your body, unearth healing energy from within, support your immune system through nutrition, and develop peace of mind.