Posts Tagged ‘Yoga at ZEA’

Fall Travels 2012

October 17, 2012

Yoga At Zea — Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

This was my second visit to www.yogaatzea.com.my which is situated on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur, or “KL” as it is commonly known.

Steamy, tropical, and surrounded by vast palm tree plantations, KL is a multicultural community, the majority of the people being Chinese, closely followed by the Muslim and Indian populations. Similar to Singapore, these three cultures live, work and observe their own religions and traditions, happily and peacefully, alongside of each other.

KL is a lively, bustling, and happy  place. I shopped for a Hello Kitty iPhone case and was taught by my hosts and their families to eat local delicacies at the Petaling Street night-market. It is also an affluent and  firmly established modern city.

Hello Kitty!

Dhanurasana

Ustrasana

Supta Padangustasana II

Setubandasana

The children’s class:

Being joyful!

Cat pose

Resources on teaching yoga to children:

  • Yogashastra Tome 1 by teachers of Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute and Light on Yoga Research Trust
  • Yogashastra Tome 2 by teachers of Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute and Light on Yoga Research Trust

Goodbye to Yoga at Zea — Zoe Kok, Anita Frisk, Bobby Clennell and Edison Tan Choon Tian

Next stop — Shelly Yoga, Taipei

In Taipei I was mesmerized by the swarming motorbikes in the city, but then calmed when I took a break in New Beitou a little town in the mountains, which was complete with hiking trails, hot springs and a Starbucks.

Inside “101”, the world’s second tallest building, a mall offers acres of high-end shopping: Burberry, Prada and Gucci, to name but a few, were all buzzing with activity. But the night markets are where Taipei comes alive. As the sun goes down, the streets come alive as thousands of people descend on the markets and alleyways for some of the best food and cheapest thrills that can be found in Asia. The same, quick stepping, fashionably dressed young people who flood these markets, are also taking to yoga in a big way.

My host Shelly teaches Iyengar Yoga at her studio Shelly Yoga, which is situated in the heart of Taipei. The students here were excitedly preparing for their first trip to study at the Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute (RIMYI), Pune.

The Priciples of Alignment

Urdhva Mukha Svanasana

Prepping for Pincha Myorasana

Parigasana (variation)

Dwi Pada Viparita Dandasana with Crossed Bolsters

Kapotasana with a chair

Last stop — The Iyengar Yoga Institute of China

The city of Guangzhou has a population of 6.7 million and has a history of more than 2,800 years. It ranks first in China in the number of restaurants and tea–houses, and is famous for it’s food including a wide range of delicate pastries. I still miss the food, especially the delicious moon cakes, which are eaten at the beginning of the fall season (and which the students showered me with to bring back to New York).

Lion dance

The elegant and spacious Iyengar Yoga Institute of China has been built and equiped since B.K.S. Iyengar visited China with the Yoga Summit, just three months previous. The main studio has 25 sets of wall ropes (enough for 25 students) and the two other good-sized yoga studios are also similarly well equipped with ropes. This Institute also has a large office, a large reception area, and a hard working staff. The moment that you step into this place, you feel the dedication to and the respect for the Iyengar method.

Uttitha Padangustasana

Sirsasana on the ropes

Urdha Dhanurasana with a rope and blocks

Urdha Dhanurasana at the trestler

Parsva Hasta Padasana at the trestler

Uttanasana to the side

China was so much fun! The energy of the place is palpable and there is a feeling that anything can be achieved. A public lecture, where I spoke and demonstrated on why women should practice ‘women’s yoga’ was organized quickly and efficiently and was complete with background music, cameras, lights, raffles, an Iyengar yoga backdrop, a podium and a rapt audience of around 300.

Adho Mukha Svanasana with head on block

Urdhva Hastasana (head up)

Padangustasana (head down)

Uttitha Padangustasana II

Kapotasana with chair

Badha Konasana

Chatoosh Padasana — the Principles of Alignment

These are early days for Iyengar Yoga in China, and my hosts at the Institute — Chen Zhiyong and Niki Su are keen to show the Chinese yoga community at large something of this method. I agreed to model for a set of photos showing some of the uses of props. Here is a small selection from that photo shoot:

Pincha Myorasana

Ardha Chandrasana

Pincha Myorasana with the Dwi Pada Viparita Dandasana bench

Badha Konasana in Rope Sirsasana

© 2012 Bobby Clennell.

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Southeast Asia Workshops

July 24, 2011

Raffles Hotel

Many thanks to Sandrine Laborde for hosting me, and to the students who made me feel so welcome at Iyengar Yoga Singapore in June. Teaching this three- day workshop gave me a window into the harmonious and multi cultural society of Singapore, which is made up of equal parts Chinese, Indian and Malayan ethnicities. I taught a mix of women’s yoga and general classes. Wherever you are in the world, if you are an Iyengar yoga studio, there is a common language and shared aspirations. But despite the familiar environment (similar props, ropes, the Patanjali chant) the students here were particularly warm and receptive making this a unique and special experience for me.

Sandrine’s studio overlooks the Singapore River

Third from left in back row, Sandrine Loborde.

Teaching for Yoga At ZEA my hosts, Edison Tan Choon Tian, Anita Frisk and Zoe Kok took me to their city Kuala Lumpur, and took me to their hearts. The workshop was well attended, at times we had over 45 students in a class. Four of the students on this workshop flew in from Australia, and two more from Taiwan. I think these pictures speak for themselves. The students were irrepressible and fun bubbled over continually during the classes. They were a joy to teach; equal parts intense focus and laughter, the students were hungry for knowledge and paid strict attention, but the atmosphere was also upbeat.

Pre-Natal Yoga.

Many books were signed…

Front row, Edison Tan Choon Tian, Zoe Kok, and Anita Frisk, founding members of Yoga at ZEA

Anita Frisk, Edison Tan Choon Tian, Bobby Clennell, and Zoe Kok

© 2011 Bobby Clennell.

Photos from Kuala Lumpur © Yoga at ZEA. All rights reserved.