Aurora de Leeuw
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YOUR 30 SECOND BREAK IS HERE! Busy all day long already? In need of a break? Take these 30 seconds to close your eyes, listen, & relax. You’re awesome 😘! #soundhealing #meditation #yoga #breathwork #crystals #crystalhealing #transformation #besoundful #goodvibes #crystalsingingbowls #soundbaths #soundbath #singingbowl #meditate #yogi #singingbowls #love #soundtherapy #healing #meditatedaily #yogini #koshi #windchime #koshiwind
𓇬 INTUITIVE MOVEMENT 𓇬 How is the flow in your own yoga practice? Do you follow a certain set of asanas (poses)? Or do you do what your body is telling you to do. Moving, without thinking about the movement itself.✨ Do you explore that meditative quality in moving in sync with your intuition; using your concentration to really explore and feel the movement? This is what I felt when doing a moving meditation practice for myself a couple months ago. I wanted to share this with you, but didn't know how to call it. This is when the meditative movement class made its introduction. Meditation without sitting still. Moving in full awareness. Moving your awareness from your eyes, to your thumb and back; moving without thinking, in full concentration, dharana. 🧘🏼♀️ Did you already try out my Meditative Movement class?📿 You can find it in my Yoga On Demand Catalogue (accessible with a membership or 7-day trial on my website, link in bio).✨ 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 ---- #yoga #meditation #yogi #namaste #yogalove #yogainspiration #motivation #mindfulness #inspiration #meditate #yogini #findyouryoga #yogateacher #yoganetherlands #meditativemovement #meditation #healing #health #gratitude #selflove #energy #consciousness #yogaondemand
𓇬 INSTAGRAM VS REALITY: THE YOGA TEACHER EDITION - PART 1𓇬 Yep, it's not all glamour around here. From the outside, you probably see the polished Instagram version of my job as a yoga teacher, including: relaxing yoga classes from my living room, effortless photos, beautiful stories about the places I went to for my different yoga teacher trainings & maybe even the impression that I've got my sh*t together. ✨ But here's the truth – the real life version of what I do and how it truly happens. Starting today with PART 1: relaxing yoga classes from my living room & the effortless photos. 🧘🏼♀️Those relaxing classes from my living room, can be really exhausting. Teaching, talking, breathing & doing the whole practice, while standing on a carpet (which is especially tricky in balance poses) is really intense for my body and my energy level. It took me a while to find a balance between teaching "online", without overdoing it. Finding that balance of my own, was a growing process (I was EXHAUSTED during the first lockdown). I've found that balance now, which was a learning process for sure! 📸The effortless photos have been a personal growing process, in which I had to really step out of my comfort zone and dare to be "crazy" with the camera. Without the amazing connection with the different photographers I've worked with, this would not have been possible. I've started this journey with @aleksandar_celar, who had a great way of making me feel "comfortable", slowly letting me get over this "camera-shyness". It's the photographers, like him, but also like @tati.vanthiel.photography , Rose from @photoshootscotland, @creativeoutburstphotography, @dorin_ciobanu, @mrinalverma & @kulovitse (who shot the pictures that are currently on my website) who helped me to step out of this comfort zone. ‼️[Little PS about the photos: the reason I use filters over the already edited (!) photos, when posting them on my Instagram is all about creating one cohesive style on my social media page. For other purposes (like my website), I always use the photos how they were edited originally by the photographers]‼️ ➡️Any of these things surprise you?
𓇬 What do you need, for your home practice? 𓇬 With the lockdown in full swing (at least here in The Netherlands), you will probably practice more at home (since, well, in person classes are not possible at all at the moment). Soo..., what do you need for your home yoga practice? And how can you get creative with the stuff you already have lying around your house? THIS POST WILL TELL YOU EXACTLY THAT!😀 First of all: ✅ a yogamat A yogamat is maybe your go to prop, if you want to practice yoga at home. It can also be nice to have your own mat to take with you to the studio, once the yoga studios reopen again! If you want more tips on which yoga mats I recommend, check my FAQ highlight: I've made a little IGTV video about which yoga mats I recommend! --- So what else? ✅ Yoga blocks Yoga blocks come in handy in your vinyasa or hatha practice, if you want to give yourself some extra space to do certain poses. In yin, blocks can be really nice to support your body, if the pose feels a bit to much without props. ❓No yoga blocks? -- You can use old books, a pile of magazines, or a stack of pillows (during your yin practice) as well! --- ✅ (Meditation) Pillow A pillow that you can sit upon, if you want to do breathing exercises or you want to meditate. Sitting on top of a pillow, creates more space for the hips, which means the knees can drop down towards the ground even more. This also helps us to release in the pelvic floor, which also relaxes our diaphragm (which makes it easier to breath deeper). ❓A regular pillow will do just fine as well, if you don't have a meditation pillow. A Yoga block can also help you out here 😃. --- For everyone who loves Restorative Yin: ✅ A bolster is an amazing prop to have. But don't worry, a couple of pillows (for example the pillow you sleep upon at night), can do wonders as well. ---- Do you want to know which yoga props I recommend in general? (which materials, shapes etc.?). Check the link in my bio for my "Which Yoga props do I recommend"-video (not sponsored). If you have any questions, don't hesitate to comment below or send me a DM 😉 ⇟⇟
Repost @Ikauros - Flexible Friday --- Did you already enjoy some laughter today? If not (or if you want more of the "laugh"-medicine"), try out this exercise: See if you can find a mirror; loosen your jaw, wiggle your eyebrows & move the corners of your mouth up and down. See if you can make as many funny faces in a short amount of time. Are you having a laugh about all the funny faces already 😏? Tip: this is also really fun to do with a roommate / partner / friend / your neighbour / a complete stranger. --- So why adding this exercise to flexible Friday? Flexibility is not something that we can only relate to our body; it can be all about our mindset as well. Being flexible in trying out new things, funny things, really dorky things! Also: moving the muscles in your face, will create a nice relaxation from staring at that computer screen / (study)book that you are maybe looking at for most of the day. 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 --- #yoga #meditation #yogi #health #yogalife #motivation #yogini #laugh #smile #fun #happiness #humor #laughing #healthy #ikauros
𓇬 Yogic Philosophy Course @uscleiden 𓇬 The lockdown has had a great impact on all the courses & workshops that were planned for you this month. Some of you have asked me, about the Yogic Philosophy Course that was about to start @uscleiden in January. 📚 The good news is that, after the lockdown, this course will be offered still! With a couple of adjustments, because the first two classes were planned to take place during the lockdown. 🥳 Week 1 + 2 & week 3 + 4 of the course will be joined together; meaning that two of the classes will be two hours long instead of one hour. If it turns out that the lockdown is going to stay with us a little longer, additional changes to the schedule will be made (probably changing all the weeks to 2 hour classes).😃 SO THE GOOD NEWS IS, YOU CAN STILL ENROLL FOR THIS COURSE! 🤩 Check the link in my bio! Curious? Check out the full course description here ⇟⇟ --- Yoga consists of more than practicing poses during your favorite yoga-classes. Everything we do throughout the yoga-classes that you are used to, is based upon the ancient principles of Yogic philosophy. In this course we will explore the principles and philosophy behind our yoga-practice; starting with a general overview of the origins of Yoga and the famous eightfold path of Patanjali. If you are looking to deepen your yoga practice in theory as well as in practice, then this course is for you! Adding to your existing yoga practice, we will add some theoretical knowledge. Week 1: General History of Yoga Week 2: Yamas: Ahimsa & Satya Week 3: Yamas: Asteya, Brahmacharya & Aparigraha. Week 4: Niyamas: Saucha & Santosha. Week 5: Niyamas: Tapas, Svadhyaya & Ishvara Pranidhana. Week 6: Asana & Pranayama. Week 7: Pratyahara, Dharana & Dhyana. Week 8: Samadhi - closing the course --- 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 ---- #yoga #meditation #yogi #namaste #yogalove #yogainspiration #motivation #mindfulness #inspiration #meditate #yogini #findyouryoga #yogicphilosophy #sanskrit #yogalife #yogateacher #yogastudent #patanjali #yogacourse #course
𓇬 I'm not gonna lie,.... being a yoga teacher demands high energy 𓇬 Whether it's my brain power (creating new classes, courses, workshops) or my physical power (teaching a lot of (online) classes), one of my secret weapons to create original content & staying tuned in with my students, is keeping my energy high.🔥 So when I'm feeling low energy and I need to "perform", I love to listen to the Sound Baths of @phyllicia.bonanno. She has some amazing (short) Sound baths on her IGTV as well for you to check out 😃. In the end, it is all about finding that balance; high energy has to be balanced by slowing down and taking time to relax & restore.🌙 What about you – what's something you love to boost your energy with? 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 ---- #yoga #meditation #yogi #namaste #yogalove #yogainspiration #motivation #mindfulness #inspiration #meditate #yogini #findyouryoga #soundbath #yogateacher #soundhealing #singingbowls #love #crystalhealing #soundtherapy #balanceyourenergy #singingbowl #fromabusytobalancedmind #highenergy #truthaboutthejob
𓇬 I'm not Flexible, can I do Yoga? 𓇬 YES! Definitely!✅ When I started my yoga journey around 8,5 years ago, I wasn't flexible AT ALL. If I would do a forward fold, I could barely touch my knees (yes, not even kidding).🧘🏼♀️ The first year of doing yoga, it was challenging due to my inflexible body; but BECAUSE I was doing yoga every week (just one class a week), I slowly gained that flexibility and space in my body. It is because of yoga that I gained that flexibility; which literally created more space in my own body.✨ So next time you think: well, I would love to try yoga, but I am not flexible at all, just do it! Try it out!✅ If you are not sure about it, choose a beginners class, or if these classes are not available in your area, my personal recommendations would be Hatha Yoga or Gentle Vinyasa / Gentle flow (if you want an active practice) or Yin (if you are looking for a more relaxing class).🧘 Let the teacher know that you maybe feel a bit anxious about not being that flexible; a good teacher will give options! You can choose whatever suits your body that day!✨ I've taught yoga to really flexible people (and people that were actually to flexible as well), people with flexibility in some parts of their body, and people who didn't have flexibility at all. The beauty is that all our bodies are different, and yoga allows us to explore our own body in its own uniqueness. You can be really flexible in certain poses, where other poses seem impossible; this is what makes your yoga unique!📿 So for all the people out there who are not flexible, I challenge you this year to try out that yoga class you maybe have put off for a long time now! ✨✨✨You 𓇬 are 𓇬 Amazing!✨✨✨ 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 ----- #yoga #meditation #yogi #namaste #yogalove #yogainspiration #motivation #mindfulness #inspiration #meditate #yogini #findyouryoga #yogateacher #vinyasa #yin #asana #vinyasaflow #wellness #health #movement #yogaeveryday #restorativeyoga #hatha #flexible #flexibility #balance #faq #frequentlyaskedquestions
𓇬 20 Day - Transformative Yoga flow Challenge 𓇬 Start 2021 with your own home yoga practice! ✅ 10 minutes per day; ✅ 5 days a week; ✅ 4 weeks in total! The yoga flows are accessible to beginners as well as advanced yogi's! From hamstring stretches to chest openers & shoulder tension relief poses! -- Full description ⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟⇟ Change the way you wake up in the morning! (And create a new morning routine in the process) Do you find it hard to get yourself out of bed in the morning? Do you feel it is difficult to get your energy going once you’re up? Do you want to feel refreshed instead of tired when you start your day? We can change that! How? By joining the 20-day Transformative Morning Flow Challenge! Taking 10 minutes, from Monday to Friday, to start the day with a soft yoga flow. We will wake up the body and dedicate those 10 minutes to some well deserved “me-time”! So how does it work? I know that your schedule is busy, and everyone wakes up at different times. That’s why all the classes are ready for you in the challenge-catalogue! So when you wake up, the practice of the day will be waiting for you! 🤑Price: Members: 7,50 euros ✅ Non-Members: 10 euros ✅ 📹You will keep the access to all the videos! So you can repeat the challenge as many times as you want!
𓇬 Happy New Year 𓇬 I wish you all an amazing (flexible) 2021! Hope to see you soon! With love, Aurora
Winners Announcement YES! The winners of my Birthday Giveaway are announced! 🥳 🎉 The winners of one Month of FREE Yoga are: Instagram & Facebook Raffle: - @_babyxghoul & @raimbow.__ Members Raffle - @christin_kuehner - @paloimpar Email subscribers Raffle - @marcellavandenbergverswijveren - @rosalinvdh Turned out, Marcella was in the box twice, because she was in my email list with two different email addresses (she is a subscriber for quite some time now, so this has nothing to do with this giveaway 😃 ). I did not spot this while transferring my email list, which I turned into the raffle tickets. (Check my IGTV for the full live Raffle)! Thanks to everyone who participated in this raffle! Who knows, shall we do this again next year? 😃 #win #free #giveaways #yoga #yogaeveryday #yogaathome #virtualyogastudio #homepractice #practiceeverywhere #yogaonline #yogateacher #yogaeverywhere #yogabuddies #tagyourfriend #birthdaygiveaway #yogaunlimited #yogagiveaway #raffle #winners #winnersannouncement
𓇬 The "end-of-the-year" post 𓇬 Yep, it is time for that post; that instagram post where I share my reflections on the past year with you & of course, share some of the exciting things that will be happening in 2021. I think I can leave all the "it has been a tough year with all the corona regulations & lockdowns" for what it is; I want to focus on the positive parts that this year has brought me (and hopefully, you as well!). Starting with the not so nice parts however: 🐈 The big thing this year for me, of course, was the sudden passing of Rufus, my amazing white cat that I had adopted several years ago. He was healthy, and the stroke he had came out of nowhere :(. I still miss him, but, on the other hand, it also opened up the opportunity to adopt our new cat, Duke, who had been in the shelter @stevenshage for over a year (where is name was Singha). ❌ Yes, this year has also been difficult in terms of being a business owner, without knowing if I could work (and for how many (paid) hours a week); ✅ But, without everything that has happend with the lockdowns, I would not have opened my own online yogastudio; which already houses over 125 videos in the Yoga on Demand catalogue. ✅ I've finished both my Master degrees this year, although I notice that this is not the first thing I think about when reflecting on this year, since I always imagined that graduating would be this big festive celebration (although the really small one had its charms as well). I'm proud to say that I'm now graduated in both Law as well as Philosophy at @universiteitleiden . ✅ I will be starting a new job for a couple days a week @universiteitleiden from January 1st as well: I will be teaching different courses in (philosophy of) law. ✅ If all goes as planned, I will also start my PhD at the beginning of next year; continuing with research, where my studies come together: criminology, law & philosophy (I will tell you more about this in the future ;) ). ✅ And of course, I moved in with my boyfriend this year, which is also a big part of what made this year amazing. 😘 Thank you for following my journey along the way! Love to hear your "highs" of 2020! ⇟⇟
𓇬Can I lose weight doing Yoga?𓇬 Towards the end of the year, I seem to get this question more often. For example, from people who would like to start with Yoga, because of the New Year's resolutions they have set for themselves. Although I could write about how everyone is perfect, just the way they are, and there is more to the word "weight" (since the weight of muscles & fat, for example, is different), I will stick to answering the question above. However, I will not focus on "calorie"-burn in my answer; yoga is not just a "work-out". Yoga is about changing your mindset, self-reflection, getting to know yourself (and love yourself; which sometimes also means that you maybe want to lose some weight or eat healthier; not because society told you to, but because you feel that it will make YOU happy 😀). ✅Different studies have suggested that doing yoga helps to develop a more mindful relationship with yourself & your behaviour, which makes it easier to resist unhealthy foods and comfort eating. It becomes easier to pick up the signs that your body is giving you, that you've eaten enough. ✅Doing yoga also helps you to sleep better and improves the quality of your sleep; better sleep, is again, associated with creating and maintaining a healthy weight (whatever this means & is too and for you 😉). If you want to improve your sleep overall, I would suggest trying Yoga Nidra! ⏩Long story short: Yes, Yoga can help you with weight loss (and yes, also with that calorie burn if you take "high power" yogaclasses), BUT this is not the goal of doing Yoga. Yoga helps you to understand your body, understand when you are feeling happy & comfortable. It helps you to recognise which foods give you energy, and which foods don't. In the end: there is no such thing as the "perfect" weight. It is about feeling happy in your own body & being able to do all the things you want to do in life 🥳 [If you want to check some academic resources about this subject, check my comment below this post]⇟⇟ -- #yoga #namaste #yogainspiration #motivation #mindfulness #inspiration #yogini #findyouryoga #weightloss #health #healthy #weightlossjourney #exercise #nutrition #healthylifestyle
𓇬 Happy Holidays! 𓇬 Hello beautiful people 💛, I want to wish you an amazing Christmas. I hope that you still have the possibility to spend this Christmas with (some of your) loved ones. We are keeping our Christmas celebrations small this year (in line with the corona-guidelines set by the Dutch government). Although it will be a while before we see each other again, I still hope to see you online every now & then! 🎄 Lots of love, Aurora 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 ---- #yogateacher #christmas #xmas #holidays #love #gifts #gift #holiday #merrychristmas #winter #christmastime #happyholidays #festive #december #shoplocal
𓇬 Dance! 𓇬 Do you ever feel like shaking everything off? Just dancing, being crazy & yet intuitive? I love to give the yogis in my classes the invitation to "shake everything". Especially after difficult or intense yogaposes, where everyone has their "serious" face on, I love to just shake it out, have fun, have a laugh :) Which for me is what yoga is about; don't take it all too seriously! This is one of the reasons that I have put the quote: “Yoga is about having fun. Shaking off what you do not need anymore, to make space for all the amazing stuff you deserve!” at the top of my websites homepage. Did you already, literally, shake off all the stuff you do not need anymore today? If not, do so now! [since your probably holding your phone, scrolling through you instagram-feed and stumbling upon my new post ;)]. I'm going to dance & shake my own body now... Namasté! 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 ---- #yoga #meditation #yogi #namaste #yogalove #yogainspiration #motivation #mindfulness #inspiration #meditate #yogini #findyouryoga #dance #shake #shakeitoff #yogafun #laugh #enjoy #bodymovement
𓇬Question....𓇬 ❓Look around you right now! What is the first thing you notice? 𓇬𓇬𓇬𓇬 ❓The thing that you notice.. is it a positive thought you have about it? Or negative? ❇️If it is positive: look at it again, notice it again, enjoy! If it is negative: ❔what can you do to turn in into a positive thing? ✔️[if the answer is "nothing"; close your eyes, take a couple of deep breaths and invite yourself to let it go, breath it out. If it is negative, but you can't change it, it does not deserve your worries!] 𓇬𓇬𓇬𓇬 Today, I'm appreciating one of the amazing memories from my trip to Norway two years ago; every time we drove a bit further, we were yet again amazed by the beautiful scenery & nature. I enjoy thinking back to this beautiful country & hope to visit it again someday! [@mrinalverma] 𓇬𓇬𓇬𓇬 Let me know what the first thing you noticed was today! It can be something small or big, curious to see your answers :) ⇟⇟
𓇬 How often should I practice yoga? 𓇬 Sometimes I get the question how often someone should practice yoga.. However, I can't give a one-size-fits-all-answer to this question. 𓇬 😃If you are a beginner (so you just started with Yoga or want to start with yoga), I would suggest starting with 1 or 2 classes a week. Why? Because if you dive in and go from zero to 💯, you will probably not continue with the practice for very long; probably quit yoga altogether, because it is too much all at once. Your body needs time in between yogaclasses to adjust to the new movements you're doing & learning. 🧘🏼♀️When I started my yoga journey around 8 / 9 years ago, I started with one hatha class a week and after a while added a yin class to my schedule. Which brings me to: 🤸"What if I'm practicing for a longer period of time already?" Then build it up (if you want to, of course) by just adding one class every few months, until you notice you reach that "comfortable" level of doing your yoga practice, resting & all the amazing stuff you do in your daily life. 𓇬 😟"But what if I can't go to the yoga studio all the time?" Don't worry, you can do a (small) practice at home as well. Maybe following classes from (your own or another) yoga teacher online, or practice the poses you already know & love yourself. 𓇬 🥺"But I don't have one hour or 1,5 hour for each practice" Just practice for as long as you want :) Maybe your practice will be one hour if you join a studio class (or maybe even longer), while your home practice is 10, 20 or 30 minutes. There is no: "you should practice for this amount of time, otherwise it is not a practice"-rule in yoga. Follow your own rhythm! 𓇬 ✅Moral of the story: If you want to practice yoga longterm, build it up slowly. Give your body time to adjust. Create a new "habit" out of going to your yoga practice once or twice a week (and as we all know, creating new habits takes time). How often do you practice yoga? Let me know! x ⇟⇟
𓇬 Enhancing your practice with Mudras 𓇬 If you follow my classes, you probably know that I think "gestures" or Mudras can be a really powerful addition to your meditation or yoga practice. They can help you to move your focus from your thoughts to the experiences of your fingers touching. To just name a few benefits of using mudras in your practice: ✅ mudras increase the flexibility and mobility of your hands, wrists, arms & shoulders; ✅ they can boost your concentration; and on a more "spiritual" level, mudras can help to: ✅ ensure that prana (the subtle energy) can move freely, which will help with keeping your body healthy & your mind balanced. ~ an example of experiencing this subtle energy is when you notice that the temperature in your hands (or other parts of your body) changes when you use the mudras in your practice & invoke the energy accompanied by these mudras. In the picture above, I show you Chin Mudra; which joins the fire element (thumb) & air element (index finger) together. This increases inner peace within the Self. You can experiment with moving the tips of the fingers more against each other or (like in this picture) letting the fingers touch wherever they end up naturally when bringing these two fingers together. Do you enjoy using mudras in your practice? Let me know! ⇟⇟
𓇬 Keep Smiling 𓇬 These days are challenging. Challenging for everyone who is working in healthcare, for everyone who lives alone, for all the small businesses. 2020 has been a rollercoaster for so many people around the world. This year has brought changes, and change can be challenging. It can be scary, induce anxiety. But in the end, we need to do this, including beating Corona, together. As a community, a society; we owe it to each other. Starting today, doing this together by spreading joy. Smile! Even when wearing a mask, your eyes will smile when your mouth does ;). Support your local business, by maybe ordering dinner from one of the closed restaurants and have it delivered to your home (an amazing initiative, a lot of local restaurants in my area are participating in!), follow your favourite (small) business owners, and if possible, support them by investing in the products they do offer. I will keep supporting you in your yoga practice, from my living room to yours. Will you share your smile & yoga practice with me as well? 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 --- #yoga #meditation #yogi #namaste #yogalove #yogainspiration #motivation #mindfulness #inspiration #meditate #yogini #findyouryoga #yogafromhome #yogaonline #buylocal #supportyourlocals #joinme #smile
𓇬Birthday Giveaway!𓇬 Yes! Today I'm already celebrating my 27th birthday. A birthday-party is not possible this year, due to the Corona regulations. However, this does not mean that I'm not celebrating my birthday at all! As the Dutch saying goes: "Wie jarig is, trakteert", meaning I'm treating 6 yogis to a FREE One Month Unlimited membership to my online yogastudio @Aurora_Yoga (www.auroradeleeuw.com). That is 150 euros worth of memberships, I'm giving away for FREE! No strings attached :). So how does it work? --- I will raffle 2 memberships among everyone who is subscribed to my newsletter! (Not yet subscribed? Check the link in my bio). & I will give away 2 memberships to one pair of "yoga buddies". What does this mean? If you would like to get a FREE membership, make sure to comment below + tagging a friend who you think deserves to have a FREE membership as well! If you win a FREE membership, your tagged friend will get one too! Of course, you can tag multiple friends, BUT, please make sure to put one friend per comment (since I will putt all the names in a "lottery bin", & I don't want to choose between your friends haha ;)). & I will raffle 2 memberships among all the current @Aurora_Yoga members! --- I will pick the winner at December 30th! (Talking about New Years resolutions ;) ). All winners will get a DM or email (newsletter subscribers) from me! If you don't receive a message, unfortunately you didn't win the giveaway. This Birthday giveaway will be posted on Instagram, Facebook & mentioned in my Newsletter; I will add up everyone who commented on Instagram & Facebook in the same giveaway group for the "Yoga buddies" giveaway. Do you have a current membership, are you subscribed to my newsletter & do you comment below and tag a friend, than you have 3 times the change of winning! (Same goes for commenting + subscribing to my newsletter, giving you 2 changes instead of one :) ). Note: if you end up to be the winner in one category, you will be excluded from the raffle in the other categories (to make it fair to everyone!).
Repost @Ikauros - Flexible Friday --- Does your lower back need some rest? Do you feel that your ankles and groins can use a stretch? Or that you can use a boost for your digestion? Try Malasana! When we experience a lot of stress in our everyday life, our body reacts to it. Maybe you experience lower back pain, headaches or digestion issues due to the stress you are experiencing, from work, study or other things that are going on in your life. Malasana, or Garland Pose, is a deep "squat" in which we create more space for the hips, the lower back and give a boost to our metabolism. This pose can be really nice after a long day of sitting on a chair. --- So how to do Malasana? Come and stand; place the feet a little bit wider than the hips and turn the toes out slightly. Now, slowly lower your butt down towards the ground. If this means that the heels come off the ground, see if you want to place a folded blanket or towel underneath the heels for extra support. You can experiment with placing the feet a bit wider, or keeping them closer together. To make the pose a bit more restorative, you can put a pillow underneath your butt. Is your neck sensitive or painfull as well? See if you can put your chin on your chest, bringing your hands behind your head. You can take a couple of deep breaths here, before slowly moving out of the pose by lifting the butt up towards the ceiling / sky. Let your upper body hang (into a forward fold), before rolling yourself all the way back up. Note: this pose is not all about flexibility; the pose will look (and feel) different for everyone based on (among other things) the shape of the hip joints (and the ability to externally rotate from the hips). If you feel pain in your knees, please come out of the pose. Don't force yourself to stay in a pose, that does not feel right for your body (note: your body! Not your ego ;) ). If you have any questions, let me know in the comments! ⇟ 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 --- #yoga #meditation #yogi #namaste #yogalove #yogainspiration #motivation #mindfulness #inspiration #meditate #yogini #findyouryoga #asana #malasana #garlandpose
𓇬Moving into Yin energy𓇬 We're slowly moving towards the wintertime here in the Netherlands. The temperature is dropping, the days are getting shorter and darker. Nature is resting. Winter is connected to yin energy (& the water element). We can recognise this yin energy, in the way we go on with our daily lives during the colder months of the year. We tend to be more indoors, slow down since we feel tired more often. If we compare the winter to the summer, you will notice that the summer holds more activity (yang), both in nature as well as in our behaviour (we spend more time outdoors, socialising, staying up late since the days are longer). Do you notice that you adjust your own rhythm to the seasons? Or do you continue in the same fashion throughout the year? ⇟⇟ 𓇬 PS. I took this photo last year in beautiful Scotland, when on our summer holiday.
𓇬 Online presence 𓇬 2020 has been a crazy year for everyone; we have learned how to adapt to a situation that we (hopefully) only experience once in a lifetime. As a yoga teacher, I went from teaching classes, to not teaching at all, to teaching online only, to teaching online & outside classes and back. We don't know what 2021 holds, but I prefer to focus on the positive things the "corona-adjustments" have also brought us. One thing I was never good at, and which took a lot of my time & energy, was social media. Building an online presence is essential, especially if you teach online yoga next to your in person classes. This is why I started figuring out how to create a bigger online (social media) presence, without letting it drain my energy. The different (partial) corona lockdowns have given me the time to figure out how to schedule my instagram, Facebook & YouTube posts. I can now do one thing at the time: either looking for the pictures I want to post, writing captions when I feel inspired & creating a schedule that works for me! Although I'm still learning, and the whole "online world" (including building my website) can still feel a bit overwhelming; I do love the interaction that is slowly growing on these platforms as well. So we can stay connected, even when we can't meet in person as much as we used to. Did you learn a new "skill" or started a new hobby during the corona-lockdowns? Let me know xx ⇟⇟
𓇬 Yogamats I recommend 𓇬 Maybe you are already practicing yoga for a while, maybe you are practicing more and more at home; the time has come: you want to buy a yogamat. But where to begin? Especially during the first Corona - lockdown (in The Netherlands), I got a lot of messages asking about which yogamats I recommend. Although there are a lot of great yogamat brands out there, I personally always buy (and have bought) @Mandukayoga yogamats for my personal practice. (FYI: this post is not sponsored in any way ;) ). A couple months ago, I've made a little video about the yogamats I personally really like (for different kind of practices). You can find the video, called "Which Yogamats do I recommend?" on my IGTV (or check the FAQ highlights above). Are there other yogamat brands you recommend? Let me know! ⇟⇟
𓇬 Stress Relief Series 𓇬 Feeling stressed? Do you have the feeling that your body is hurting after all those "zoom" meetings & sitting on your desk chair for most of the day? Every two weeks a little video (2-3 minutes) is being published to my facebookpage (@auroradeleeuwyoga), in which I explain a short pose / asana movement that you can do if you want to move your body, release some (physical) stress or when you feel you need that moment to check in with yourself. There are already 7 Stress Relief videos online for you to check out! Click the link in bio > Stress Relief Series to try them out! 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 --- #yoga #meditation #yogi #namaste #yogalove #yogainspiration #motivation #mindfulness #inspiration #meditate #yogini #findyouryoga #stressreliefseries #Facebook #facebookseries #yogaseries #yogavideos #minibreak
𓇬Ahimsa𓇬 I've been teaching a course on the "basics" of Yoga asana's at the moment @uscleiden. In this course, a small group of fantastic people is exploring how the poses that are part of surya namaskar A & the classic surya namaskar suit their body. Making personal adjustments, working together, observing how one pose can look so different for all the people in the room. It is amazing to work with all the participants in this course; the atmosphere is relaxed & full of laughter. At a certain point the yogis were practising in groups, working on the poses ardha uttanasana and uttanasana, one of the yogis was about to do the pose so she could get feedback from her fellow yogis. I heard her saying something along the lines of: "yeah, I'm really bad at this, but.." I took the moment to let the whole class know: "You are all amazing, even if a pose is difficult, you will still be awesome in whatever way you do it!" It was a beautiful moment where I think most of us (including me) realised that more than often, we tend to pull ourselves down, because we feel that "others" can do it better, or "we should be better" at certain things. It is an example of what is called "Ahimsa" in yoga; nonviolence. The way we communicate with and towards ourselves, is just as important as the way we communicate with and towards others. By telling yourself you can't do something, or you are "bad" at something, you will hold yourself back; although, especially in yoga, the pose will look and feel exactly right for your body in this moment! Do you notice that you tend to use "violent speech or thoughts" towards yourself that is maybe holding you back in what you are doing or want to achieve? We are all amazing & our mindset can have such a great influence on how we see ourselves. To do of today: give yourself a compliment, because you are amazing! 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 --- #youareawesome #yoga #asanatechnique #positivethinking #ahimsa #nonviolence #love #goddessvibes #trustyourself #anxietyhelp #releasefear #positivethoughts #mantra #yogateacher #yogini
𓇬 Coffee & Yoga 𓇬 I absolutely love a cup of coffee in the morning. I always prefer a Latte Macchiato, since coffee without (almond, oat or (yes) cow) milk does not go well with my stomach. "Back in the days", during my studies @UniversiteitLeiden I could drink quite a lot of coffee - maybe even a bit too much. These days I enjoy one or two coffees a day (and sometimes no coffee at all, especially if I wake up a bit later in the morning). I don't drink coffee before my yoga practice however, since it does not only dehydrates the body, but I also notice that my stomach does not like twists, forward folds & backbends right after enjoying a coffee :). The moral of the story? Be mindful with what you drink (just like you are mindful during you yoga practice), so you can really enjoy that coffee / glass of wine / "insert your guilty pleasure here" What is your guilty pleasure when it comes to food or drinks? Let me know ⇟⇟
𓇬My wrists hurt during Yoga, what can I do?𓇬 A commonly asked question that I get is "Aurora, my wrists hurt during my Yoga practice, what can I do?". Let me share the most common solution with you: it is all about the placement of the hands. -- If you notice that your wrists hurt during the practice, take a look at what your hands are doing in poses like plank or down dog. Are your fingers stretched out? Are the fingers spread out (to create a bigger surface to support yourself)? Do you notice that your hands start to "curl up" (meaning that the fingers move closer together and you are mainly leaning on the sides of your hands and your wrists)? If you notice that it is difficult to spread out the fingers, place your hands a little further away from each other (more towards the side of the mat, so the hands end up in one line with the shoulders). The main reason for the hands curling up, has to do with the anatomy & range of motion in the shoulders. If we place the hands a bit wider, we create more space in the shoulders; meaning that we can place our hands more firmly into the ground without having to move the hands to compensate for the shoulders. Curious about this? Check out the video "Asana Yoga By Aurora" that I filmed for USC Leiden during the first Corona lockdown. You can find the video by clicking the link in my bio >> @Aurora_Yoga x USC Leiden (Free Youtube Classes) -- Do you want to give your wrists a break? Another option is using special yogablocks (made to reduce the angle of your wrists during your yoga practice). It gives more space to your wrists, while you are still able to use all the strength in your hands & arms. You can find these "wrists support" blocks in my online shop. Note, that this advice can help people without a history of wrist injuries. For individual advice, I would always recommend to ask your own yoga teacher in person so he / she can have a look at how you are moving and the range of motion that is available in your wrists already. Please consult your GP or physiotherapist if you have any medical conditions that (you think) may influence your yoga practice.
Repost @Ikauros - Flexible Friday ---- What do you do when feeling overwhelmed? When anxiety is knocking on the door? Maybe someone has suggested to you to try out a yoga class. Since this "would work wonders", when it comes to stress or anxiety. However, maybe you feel that yoga is a step too far, or maybe, you have the feeling that yoga is for the flexible people among us. Did you know, that yoga is actually everywhere around you? Present and with you all day everyday? If you allow yourself to tap into that energy. Yoga is not about creating beautiful postures, being super flexible and strong; it is about your journey towards self-knowledge; including recognising when you feel stressed, overwhelmed, or anxious. All asanas (poses we do in Yoga) are to prepare the body for meditation; not to look amazingly flexible and strong all the time ;). So today, see if you can tune in with your yoga. Sit on a chair, bring your hands in front of your heart, or place them on your lap. Close your eyes.... and breath. Following your breath, how it flows in and out of your body. In and out... slowing your thoughts down... reducing anxiety.... releasing stress.... You are awesome! And you just did yoga ;) Namasté 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 --- #yoga #meditation #yogi #namaste #yogalove #yogainspiration #motivation #mindfulness #inspiration #meditate #yogini #flexiblefriday #lessstress #stressmanagement #reduseanxiety #ikauros #selflove #findyouryoga
𓇬Firing up or Slowing Down𓇬 Both firing up as well as slowing down are equally important. Although both aspects can be found in every yoga class (including yin classes!), the amount of Yin (relaxation) versus Yang (activation) can be different. Sometimes people join my classes, who are already really fired up (active, always "on the go", getting restless when they have nothing to do). Others like to stick to yin classes, not a lot of activity, mostly slowing down. I tend to challenge them: is this the class you really need? Or is this class a class that feels familiar, but is actually holding you back in creating that balance for yourself? I always advise to create a healthy balance between yin & yang, between activation and relaxation. Where this balance is, can be different from season to season, from day to day! If you feel really tired, take it slow, tap into that yin energy that your body is already asking for. If you feel that you have tapped into that yin energy for to long, see if you can find that activation! Maybe even joining a vinyasa class. There are a lot of different ways to move, to activate and to relax. Sticking to the example of choosing a yoga class that suits you: if you feel tired, but in need of movement, join a hatha class or gentle flow instead of a fully powered vinyasa. If you feel you need relaxation, because you have been really active throughout (the past couple of) day(s), join a yin class, or yoga nidra class. Find that class that suits your energy at the moment, meaning, the energy that you need! If you check in with yourself, your body will tell you. And maybe it is not always the answer that you want to hear. ;) 𓇬 What classes do you prefer to do? And how do you create that balance between activation & relaxation? Let me know! x 𓇬 𓇬 𓇬 ---- #yoga #namaste #mindfulness #meditation #yin #yogateacher #yinyogateacher #yogini #yogaeveryday #health #balance #yogi #yoga #yinyoga #vinyasa #hatha #findyourbalance #activationandrelaxation
𓇬Why I started doing Yoga𓇬 I started doing yoga over 8 years ago. I just started my study @leidenuniversity (@leidenlawschool), and told myself that, apart from studying and my student life (that mainly took place @vsl.catena), I had to do some exercise as well. Around that time, a new gym opened its doors at the corner of my street. I started with a regular gym membership at this gym (@newstyleleiden). I did not feel inspired by doing the "fitness" exercises every week, so when they started to offer yogaclasses, I decided to join a hatha yoga class on Saturdays with @ambrevandeberg . The first time I joined, I was convinced that I was dying halfway through the class 😂. Yoga confronted me with the range of movement I had, how stressed out and tense my body was. However, something amazing happend after joining just one class. The physical pain in my neck and back, that I was struggling with for a long time, felt better after the class (and the days that followed). Although that one hour Hatha class felt like hell, I tried to go more often. So every Saturday, from 11:00 till 12:00 I was dying on that yogamat. But afterwards, I enjoyed having less pain throughout the week. Not long after, @lisa.sonder started joining me at the gym & yogaclasses. Going from just joining Hatha, to trying out the new Yin classes... it was the start of an amazing journey. Although yoga started as a physical journey for me, it developed into a physical as well as mental journey. A journey towards more relaxation, going from a busy to a balanced mind. I'm still growing as a yogi, and I'm so excited to find out where this road will take me in the upcoming years! 𓇬 Why (& when) did you start doing yoga? Let me know! #yoga #yogajourney #yogainspiration #yogalife #yogalove #yogadaily #yogapractice #yogi #namaste #yogini #development #whyIstarteddoingyoga
𓇬Why is Savasana Important?𓇬 A question that I get asked every once in a while. Maybe you are one of the people who feels really uncomfortable when lying still in Savasana (the final relaxation) at the end of your yoga class. Maybe you would just love to skip Savasana, and go on with the rest of the day. However, for some reason I always keep telling you that Savasana is the most important pose of your whole entire yoga practice. "If you would just do one pose for the whole entire class, let it be Savasana" I catch myself saying every now and then (when I get this question). So today I will tell you why Savasana is important, and why you should never skip it! --- 1. Savasana helps you to fully release, by bringing about a deep state of rest at the end of your practice. ~ the reason that a lot of people don't feel "relaxed" in this pose, can be because they go on and on and on in everyday life, without taking a moment of "rest" and "stillness". If you notice your thoughts are even louder during Savasana, Savasana could be what you actually really need right now! 2. Savasana gives you time to "reset"; to release remaining tension in the body & to let your breath go back to its natural rhythm. Our body can come back to its neutral position after doing stretches, folds and twists. Which brings me to: 3. Savasana helps you to integrate all the amazing stuff you did during your practice. Since we are mainly activating the sympathetic nervous system during our practice (which means that our heart rate increases, our temperature rises and our breathing tempo increases), Savasana allows us to tap into the parasympathetic nervous system; our heart rate goes down, our muscles and organs get more oxygen and we can breath deeper and slower. Savasana gives us a moment for recovery after action. A balance between action and relaxation, Yang & Yin. We need both! So whatever you do, never, ever skip Savasana ;) #yoga #meditation #yogi #yogalife #namaste #yogateacher #raiseyourvibration #asana #savasana #yoga #FAQ #questionsfromyou #yogaquestions
𓇬Music or Breath?𓇬 Sometimes, when I’m joining a class of one of my colleagues or fellow yoga teachers, I notice this beautiful calm music playing in the background. Even in a vinyasa, the music just elevates the practice in so far that my mind releases the focus on the thoughts, and tunes in with my body again. However… Whenever I’m doing my own practice, or when I’m teaching, I can’t seem to find that flow when using music in the background. Far too often, I notice that the music “breaks” the flow (especially during Vinyasa), which is why I tend to let my classes “flow” & “dance” on the movement of the breath. It gives me space in my teachings to listen to what the class, their bodies, need in this moment. If I’m taking the practice to far (when their bodies get tired, or their energy levels are low that day) or if I should increase the intensity of the practice even more (when the energy is high). I’m really curious about your thoughts about music in a yoga class, does it enhance the stillness in your practice? That turning inwards? Or, do you feel it is distracting? & for my fellow teachers, what do you prefer when you are teaching? Let me know! x — 📸: @kulovitse
𓇬Weekly Newsletter & new skills𓇬 Every week I send out a newsletter with updates about my online classes, courses & masterclasses. These past couple months have been all about learning new skills I didn’t know I would need as a yogateacher. Website software, licenses, marketing, newsletters, improving video quality, microphone skills… I love to learn along the way, and I love to see so many of you trying out the memberships & keeping your yoga practice going!✨ We are in this journey together. Let me know if there is anything I can help you with to keep your yoga practice going! Even if practising in person is not an option at the moment.🙏🏻 Namasté [Read the Newsletter by clicking the Link in my Bio 💕] 📸: @kulovitse
𓇬Restorative Yin & Sound𓇬 Tonight is already the final week of my first ever Restorative Yin & Sound course @uscleiden . Time flies! During eight weeks a lot of beautiful ladies joined me for different Restorative Yin poses to bring more of that relaxation back in their bodies & mind. Finishing the practice with a mini Sound Bath every week. Since this first course was fully booked, I’m going to offer this course again! Starting next week, we will explore different poses & I will show you how to practice with these poses at home (Mister Sticky is here to help! Swipe >>). Grab one of those final spots for this course by registering through @uscleiden 🤩.
𓇬 Grounding & Grief 𓇬 Nature has this powerful ability to help you in times you are in need of healing. To support you in those moments where you feel you’ve lost contact with this strong & grounding energy.✨ Nature, for me, has been (and still is) a strong medicine. The peace & quiet. Just the wind, trees, water & birds. As an introvert, the silence helps me to recharge my battery. Around two years ago I had the pleasure to visit Norway with @mrinalverma . Driving around in the area of Tromsø, we were amazed by the beautiful scenery that was present all around us. With only around 4 hours of daylight each day, we managed to explore the beauty of the fjords & nature Norway had to offer (which @mrinalverma was able to capture beautifully with his camera). After Rufus’ dead last week, I’m now experiencing this connection with nature again. Reclaiming this grounding energy to support me, adding Yin yoga & slow Flow to my practice.🌱✨ What do you do when you need to recharge yourself?✨
𓇬 Rufus 𓇬 Today, I’ve got some less happy news to share with you. Yesterday, a couple hours after my previous post, Rufus, my beautiful cat, passed away. Around 4:30 yesterday afternoon, I heard a intense crying / screaming from my backyard. After rushing to the kitchen door, I found Rufus, paralyzed from the waste down on the doormat in front of the catdoor. My boyfriend and I rushed to the vet, to find that Rufus had suffered a stroke and wasn’t going to recover. He was in a lot of pain, so the best thing to do in that moment was to choose for the option where he would no longer suffer. He died around 45 minutes after I found him on our doormat. I miss this little white fluffball immensely, have cried for most of the evening / night, but know that I did the best thing I could do for him. I miss him, especially when I see his toys, catbeds & so on. He was a real gift, my grumpy beautiful sweet cat. 💕💕💕 Rufus: November 1st 2005 - September 28th 2020
𓇬Charity𓇬 Animals can make a huge difference in how we cope with the struggles that we face. I think I don’t have to tell anyone with a pet, how much these little fluffballs can mean to us :). This is why I want to give back to the charity that has helped me to adopt my own amazing cat, Rufus. This is why, last year & this year, I’ve orginised a yogaclass to raise money for animalshelter @stevenshage . You can support this amazing animal shelter in Leiden too! Check out their webshop for different products that you can buy to support them (including access to a Stevenshage exclusive (online) yogaclass 🤩). Which charities are important to you? Let me know!
𓇬Meditative Movement𓇬 How is your energy level lately? Do you feel like slowing down (yin) or increasing that inner fire (yang)? I notice that I love to meditate through movement lately. The complete focus being on my breath, no distractions, while moving consciously following the rhythm of my breath.✨ To let you share in this experience, I’ve added a meditative movement class to the Yoga on Demand catalogue. I’d love to hear how you experience this different way of creating breath awareness and a moment of meditation for yourself. Swipe right to see the preview of this class (= almost the whole class, reduced from 45 min till just around 30 seconds 𓇬 taking it slow is key). ~ The Yoga on Demand Catalogue (with over 85 classes) is accessible with a @Aurora_Yoga membership. 𓇬 Link in bio for more info.