June Meditation Challenge & Mala Making Workshop

THIRTY DAY
PRACTICE
here you’re committing to making meditation a part of your life for the next 30 days. Yay you! Meditation may seem daunting, but you can’t do it wrong, our guide will give you many options to try to see what fits for you, you can follow it or not. The “best” one, is the one that “works” for you; many paths, one intention – to notice yourself. Sounds simple enough right?

TIPS

  • Practice at approximately the same time everyday.
    Morning is a great time – as there are generally fewer things to get in your way – (fewer BBQs, kids, patio drinks to distract) And those are the hours you have most control over (you can always wake up earlier)
  • Create a space; an area you will sit to do your meditation. Clear and clean the space, set it up with intention.
    This can be as elaborate or simple as you wish. It can simply be a spot or a pillow on the floor or a chair. You may also wish to create a little space or “altar” where you can place things consistent with what you want to create in your life – (like a 3D manifestation of a dream) photos, sacred items, keepsakes, flowers, crystals, a candle… anything really – don’t overthink it.
  • Start small 3-5 minutes. If you’re new to meditation starting with “guided” meditations (listed later) is a great way to start.

There are so many different ways to meditate and types of meditation. In the following “guide” we will introduce several that work for us and we believe are a great starting point. Take what you like, move on if it’s not working for you! Or just do your own thing.
DAY 1-10 
Guided Meditations:
Headspace (an app, free) has a great series of 10 meditations to get you started. (the icon is a white background with orange circle). It’s very basic, perfect for beginners, will walk you through everything step by step. Each is 10 minutes in length.

Lululemon has a series of meditations on the music site soundcloud:
https://soundcloud.com/lululemon-athletica-1
Their “One week Meditation Challenge” is a great place to start. There are 7 on there. Another great series of 7 on that site is called “Awaken Your Potential Chakra Meditations”. The lengths range from approximately 5-10 mintues.
The Chopra Center has a number of guided meditations of various lengths and themes ranging from 5-25 minutes. http://www.chopra.com/ccl/guided-meditations

You may wish to explore them all and see what resonates.
DAY 11-17

Keep exploring guided mediation. Try one of the meditations written on the handout you received in studio. Try an “unguided” meditation – set a timer, 5-10 minutes is a great goal. Different things you can focus on to keep you present: the flame of a candle. Counting the lengths of your breaths. Remember, you’re not trying to do anything or go anywhere. Just notice.

JUNE 17th:
Mala Making Workshop with Purple Lotus @ BYB!
sign up in studio. Spots limited.

JUNE 20th:
Full Moon Group Meditation (Optional… and awesome, after the 730pm class approx 30min)

DAY 18-24
Mantra Meditation:
Traditionally a teacher will select a specific mantra for you based on what he or she feels you need to work on. We don’t live in that guru- disciple relationship here in the west – students are encouraged to notice which mantras they feel drawn to – one may sound pleasing or healing for you. It may be in Sanskrit or English. It may be one word or a sentence. Choose one and try and stick with it – the repetition is important. Words carry within them the seeds of creation and are a powerful force for bringing into existence that which you desire. Mantras help us grow in inner peace, belief and connection to Self, channel positive thinking and manifest it into reality
Here are some simple, widely used Mantras:

OM – is the sound that Eastern lore holds was made at the time of creation

I AM – “I am,” which is powerful in itself, or you can say, “I am strong,” or choose another positive attribute. This way, you concentrate on the characteristics you seek to develop.

SOHAM – is the sound that you make when you breathe, according to Swami Jnaneshvara Bharati. As air comes into and out of your body, it sounds like two syllables “so” and “ham”. This is the easiest mantra for beginners on this list, and a great way to become aware of your breathing and practice focusing on it because Soham requires no chanting, just deep, conscious breathing.

A POSTIVE WORD OR SENTENCE OF YOUR CHOICE – A name, an attribute you would like to have or a positive word.

Some may wish to choose words or sentences from Holy texts.

Your mantra can be said out loud or in your head. If you are in a place where you cannot repeat the mantra out loud, then repeating it in your mind will be just as beneficial. If you repeat the mantra out loud, allow your body to feel the vibrations of your spoken voice. The mantra carries power through your body in this way. If you are repeating the mantra in your head, allow the mantra to consume the entirety of your thoughts. When you repeat it through your mind you may also want to imagine the mantra flowing through the entire body.

Begin your session with:

  • observing a minute of silence with closed eyes
  • start chanting the mantra gently for 10-15 minutes (if you have a mala, you can use it to keep track and chant it 108 times J
  • finish by sitting still for a couple of minutes with no chanting toward the end

 

DAY 25-30
Yogis Choice! Choose what feels good or what is working for you! Congratulations on making this a daily practice!

When Did Becoming a Senior Girl Become Uncool?!

Yoga Competition

Jumbo Shrimp. Only Choice, Bitter Sweet. And then we have Yoga Competition. Two words when put together to produce a relatively new event in Ontario, created some eyebrow raising conversations. Yoga Competition?

According to people I’ve spoken with, these two words simply don’t go together. “Yoga”, they tell me, “is a personal journey”. To which I agree. “Where does competition fit into the equation?” I’ve been asked as individuals try to make sense of this pretty ugly combination.

I began googling, attempting to make sense of a tradition that has been around for 100’s if not 1000’s of years. I stopped at “Oxymoron”, — a figure of speech in which two opposite ideas are joined to create an effect. Yoga Competition. An oxymoron, (according to literarydevices.net), may produce a dramatic effect but does not make sense.

A Yoga Competition sounded appealing for several reasons. I am an avid student, with no aspiration to teach, but a desire to learn. However, at this stage in life, I don’t rush to add the dis to my comfort zone. A goal, like a Yoga Competition could be exactly what I needed to push me into uncharted territory. I bumped up my classes and explored different modalities and even jumped on a plane to Ireland for a week to learn from a woman who trained yoga competitors.

At home and abroad, I practiced alongside some very bendy, extremely strong women. I wondered what my practice would have looked like, if I too had discovered yoga in my 20’s or 30’s. Not daunted, (haha, liar! Yes I was), but I continued, with each of my seven grandchildren surrounding me for support. I struggled through crow and peacock, powered by imagining their faces, wanting to set an example—, reciting you’re a grandmother of 7, you’re a grandmother of 7, when all I could do was lift my feet a mere ¼ inch off the ground. Picture this next statement like a Mercer Meyer book title …“I Was So Proud” the first time I was able to lower into Chaturanga without my knees touching down before my chest, and yes, did I mentally high fived myself.

As the day of competition drew closer, my insides jiggled with fear. I heard through the grapevine people were dropping out for various life reasons and the numbers were dwindling. This suited me fine. I even stopped by the front desk to mention it wouldn’t hurt my feelings if the entire event was canceled. I positioned it as though I would take one for the team. To which I received a resounding “we can’t do that”.

Had I been paying closer attention, I would have realized this local event held at my home studio was actually the regional competition for the province of Ontario. Cancelling was not an option.

Then two days before the event I received a text from Meghan Huehn, Bikram Yoga Barrie owner. She asked me if I wanted to be in the Women’s or Senior Women’s category, 55 plus. Whhat, there’s a Senior Women’s? I truly believe that due to a regular yoga practice, the mirror has been kinder to me. However, according to my birth certificate, I qualified as a senior. Yes. I am a grandmother of 7. Yes. I am bendy in a sort- of- way. Yes. I can do postures better from a seated position, rather than standing. Yes. Put me in coach-what’s the rest of that song? I’m ready to face the day.

My Yoga Competitionmay produce a dramatic effect but does not make sense

 

  • Having selected the right category I arrived on stage with self-assurance.
  • For the first time in 30 years, I did the splits in April.
  • This 3 minute demonstration was my dance. No more regret about being unable to perform as a child.
  • History was made- I became the first Ontario Senior Women’s Champion
  • I fondly remembered high school and being a Junior Girl, admiring and yearning to be one of the Senior Girls. Through this competition, younger people were hesitant to refer to me as a Senior. I’ve pondered many times since, when did being a senior girl/women stop being something to aspire to? A title that would have people feel hesitant in referring to? I didn’t have to wonder long, as the messaging is every where. We women are encouraged to eradicate our facial lines with creams, surgeries and fillers, thereby erasing our history. How did we allow ourselves to believe being a senior wasn’t “cool”. Not that I want my grey hair to show—a girl has her limits. I am reminded to embrace who and where I am today. I recognize through the gift of time, it’s a hard won place. Whether “the place” is standing on a yoga stage, or putting one foot in front of the other –there is no competition, only an opportunity to celebrate who we are in that moment of time.
  • Show up. My mind didn’t even imagine the Provincials when I began practicing four years ago. And now I’m given to understand it could be the Nationals, maybe even the Worlds!

Thank you to the entire BYB community for always supporting me. I may have graced the stage, but I certainly did not arrive alone! Namaste.

A note about fear, our new schedule and living on purpose.

Thank you for being part of our community at BYB. I truly feel as though it is a community and not just a space people come and go. I see the connections formed between people, the layers of armor people carry come off, a sense of home and ownership.
I love that.
It is absolutely what I set out to create.
This space has never been about me. It has always been about serving others, sharing this practice to help people feel better physically and mentally (which brings me so much joy.. so it’s a little about me). With 4 years under our belt we decided it was time to expand our offerings in the hopes of serving more people, providing a more well rounded yoga education and inviting more people into this great community we’ve created together.

I have agonized over changing things because:
1) change is hard and scary (even if it is for the best)
2) I didn’t want to upset anyone (I care deeply about everyone that practices here)

Upon evaluating these “reasons” for not moving forward, I realized that they are rooted in fear and not in possibility. They focus on what I don’t want, not what I truly desire (to reach more people with this powerful yoga and community).
I don’t want to live my life from a place of fear and scarcity. I don’t want to give all my power away and allow other people to dictate my choices. I want to live what I teach – and that is to be on fire about what I want; to have faith in what I love; to follow and believe what is true in my heart.

I realize that I may have taken away a class that you regularly attended. For that I am truly sorry. I don’t want to take your yoga away. Some people have come to talk to me about it – and I love that. It’s important to me that you feel comfortable sharing your thoughts and opinions with me -you are the reason we are here.

I’m not perfect. I absolutely make mistakes. This might be one, but I had to try it. As a studio our goals include increasing our reach to help improve more people’s lives and we’ve seen changing the schedule to be a step in that direction. I wish we could offer all the yogas at all the times of day – (a secret dream of mine is to build up another storey and add another yoga room) but it is not something we can do right now. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we move through this transition and please talk to me in person or email (meghan@bikramyogabarrie.com) if you have any concerns, comments, opinions, feedback, or just want to say hi!

Spring is here. It is a season of growth, light, hope and new beginnings. Shed the old thought patterns and habits that have been holding you back and get ready to step into the new, stop living from fear, focusing on what you don’t want and start BEING who you want to be… then you will start having and doing all the things you dream of.
Fear is a liar.
With all the love, and gratitude, Meghan.

Complimentary Yoga ALL Weekend!

We’re giving you 11 classes and 2 days to decide that you love us, and you’ve never felt better!
Whether you’re new to yoga or a seasoned yogi, these classes are for you!

Finding the right spot that serves your body, mind and soul is sometimes hard, there’s ALOT out there! We want to make it easy. Come try our classes, meet our staff, feel the community vibe all on US!

Saturday January 23rd

8:00am-9:00am Bikram HOT Yoga

9:30am-10:30am YIN

11:00am – 12:30pm Vinyasa

1:00pm – 2:00pm Strength & Conditioning

2:30pm-3:30pm Intermediate Class (experienced yogis only)

4:30pm – 6:00pm Mash up (a fusion of our most popular classes)

 

Sunday January 24th

8:00am – 9:30am Vinyasa

10:00am -11:30am Bikram Hot Yoga

4:30pm – 6:00pm Bikram Hot Yoga

6:30pm – 8pm YIN

Full class descriptions from our schedule page.

Questions? Contact us – info@bikramyogabarrie.com or talk to a human 705-725-8331

Come see what the hype’s about! We promise you’ll leave sweatier, happier and healthier than you came!

FALL YOGA CHALLENGE

Want to practice more yoga? Need some help committing?!
Join our Fall yoga challenge and challenge yourself to practicing 4 times a week or everyday… it’s your choice for this challenge.
Set a goal for yourself and we and the community will help you achieve it!!!

Starts: Monday, November 19th

We made this challenge BINGO! Themed… who doesn’t like Bingo!?!?
You will be given a bingo card filled with different challenges to work toward throughout the month, whilst working toward whatever goal you set for yourself. As you complete a square on your card, the front desk staff will stamp it.

How to win: Filling your card in different ways qualifies you to win small prizes throughout and BIG prizes at the end of the challenge.

The Awesome Prizes:

  • A BREVILLE PRO JUICER!!
  • ORGANIC PRODUCE DELIVERED TO YOUR DOOR
  • $25 GIFT CERTIFICATE TO THE STUDIO

And the ultimate prize of feeling amazing, accomplishing a challenge and being around great people!

 

With over $400 in prizes to be won throughout the month, what are you waiting for !? Sign up here , or in studio and join the fun, our community and the race to a card that will redefine your practice!!

BUDDY CHALLENGE

Sweating with my omies

The infamous 30 Day Challenge is back this Spring!! But we’ve switched it up a bit.
You may wonder… what could possibly be better than doing 30 classes in 30 days?? Doing it with a buddy of course!!
Our next 30 day challenge starts April 12th and for the first time it’s a Buddy Challenge! So sign up with a partner, create a team name, and do the challenge together! You can split up the challenge between you, the split doesn’t have to be equal either, one partner can pull more weight than another (each do 15 classes, 20 and 10, 29 and 1… you get it) as long as your team completes 30 classes in 30 days. Feeling hardcore? Need some serious change, then for sure each commit to 30 in 30. It’s up to you!

Reasons to do the challenge:
– Motivation to practice more (your teammate is counting on YOU!)
– A sweet limited edition tank top
– 15% off at the boutique (during the challenge)
– Large amounts of fun with your friend(s)

We finish off the 30 days with a Social gathering, complete with rewards for kicking a$# at the challenge.
So bring your (team) spirit and the heat.

 

The cost is $60 per team (plus your unlimited yoga pass)
Don’t have an unlimited pass?? Get one month unlimited for $99 (save $51 bucks!!)

 

So sign up now & have fun sweating with your omies!

A Farewell From Siobhan

A Farewell from Siobhan
To the students of Bikram Yoga Barrie & my fellow practitioners,

BYB is the most special of places, a space I will always be proud to call my yoga “home”. In the winter of 2012, just as Magical Meghan was opening her doors, I was in spiritual and emotional distress. On one unsuspecting night, I entered the doors of BYB and never looked back. It wasn’t easy, and in the beginning I loathed everything about that damn torture chamber. Constant encouragement, commitment to practice and a total surrender of myself – I wasn’t breaking down anymore, I started to break through. I completed a 30?day challenge and began to see myself clearly. I trained and competed in a yoga competition. I met the most amazing, brilliant and shiny people. I felt like I was a part of something. Anxiety was gone, I was sleeping through the night and for the first time in years I felt connected to myself. I decided that I needed to share this amazing gift of 26+2 with others.

In the spring of 2013 I left my job, my place and my people. I went to LA and trained in a big ass sweat box with some other 400 aspiring yogis. More break throughs, more surrendering and more clarity. It was the toughest and hardest thing I have ever done in my life, and often times I’m asked, “Would you do it again?”, my reply, “Absolutely f$&king not!”. It was the most rewarding and fulfilling time of my life. One night after a extra long and killer class, I lay on my mat and felt complete joy. The true kind, the type of joy that isn’t immediately followed with guilt. I got shiny. My heart got bigger. I felt prepared and equipped to share this beautiful practice with others.

Teaching this practice is only a small fraction of the joy at BYB. The real joy is being among the students and teachers that bring to life the space. Being here and guiding you through the practice, seeing the transformations and work you do has been a true privilege and honour. It is with a bit of a heavy heart that I tell you that I am leaving BYB. The decision was not an easy one, but as many of you know I lead a double working life! I have been offered an amazing job with a great company in Toronto, which I will be starting in mid?April. This practice, the work I do in that damn room and the love and support of the people in my life have lead to my greatest potential. Of course, I will miss you all terribly and will be back often to practice and occasionally rock it out on that podium!

Lastly, I want you all to know how much appreciate each and every one of you. My life is extra special because of you. Teachers rarely disclose how difficult things in their own lives can be, please know that I feel more love and energy while teaching than you can imagine. Often times your sweaty little faces have carried me through some really difficult times – thank you! I mentioned Magical Meghan at the beginning, just get close and you’ll feel it! I never imagined the power of a single person so set on love and passion for what she does. I am grateful to her, she saved me and does the same for so many of you. Meghan, I don’t say this lightly, you are a Guru with the truest and greatest of hearts.

I hope you’ll all join me for my final class on Wednesday, April 8th at 530p.

Love, Siobhan

How Yoga Changed My Life: the KMAC edition

My name is Kevin McCormick, I am the “Canadian Member and Industry Relationship Manager” for SME (The society of Manufacturing Engineers) Barrie Bikram Yoga has changed my life! One year ago, I would never have thought a team of yoga instructors could teach me so much. My physical, mental and spiritual health has benefited enormously within a short span of time.

I was introduced to Barrie Bikram Yoga by a very close family friend at a time when I was physically struggling with the battle wounds of being a very active and competitive person. My life time injuries include; 7 knee surgeries, broken back, broken ribs, various other broken bones and a torn bicep. I suffer from arthritis in my knees, and severe tendonitis in my elbows. When I first started at the Barrie Bikram Yoga studio, I could barely kneel down on my knees, let alone touch my rear to my ankles in sitting Japanese style. Due to pain and inflammation in my knees, I had pretty much given up running as it was way too painful. I can remember my first Bikram Yoga session, with the talented Siobhan, being very welcoming and warm. It was like I had come home. By practising at Barrie Bikram Yoga, I have become more flexible, able to control pain in my body from years of abuse, and have returned to sports I had given up because of the poor shape my body was in. My Chronic back pain had pretty much disappeared; my knees had never felt better. At one point I had thought I would never run again, but after a couple months of Bikram Yoga I found myself able to run 10k at a whim with no serious pain in my knees. I was running on a regular basis again. My tendonitis has pretty much disappeared and my back pain is relatively nothing. I was beginning to feel like I was 20yrs younger.

Although I struggled with some postures, I am always encouraged by Meghan and her amazing staff. Emotional support is never lacking at Barrie Bikram Yoga. I have learned that fulfillment is a journey that never ends and is about continually improving your body, mind and spirit. I have completed two 30 day challenges with Barrie Bikram Yoga and the differences in my body were quite evident. My confidence level was at an all-time high!!! I had regained my body and advanced my positive emotional self.

On December 23rd, 2014, two days before Christmas, I was told I had testicular cancer and on December 26th, they were going to operate. Needless to say I was very scared, confused and my spiritual beliefs were questioned. (This wasn’t supposed to happen to me!!!???) I went through a plethora of different emotions while dealing with the news, how the heck was I going to tell my children and family, how would I tell my friends. One of the hardest things I have ever done in my life was having the discussion with my children about being told I had Cancer. It was one of the most emotional things I have ever had to go through.

I was told that 2-3 weeks post-surgery may allow return of regular activity, yet even week three saw me doing very little from an activity perspective. As my body was healing from the surgery I was very tired and exhausted both physically and mentally. I felt my body deteriorate from a very healthy and active body (due to yoga) to a body where muscle atrophy was setting in and I gained 15lbs. After surgery, I felt for the first time, even after all my injuries over the years that my body was starting to fail me. I had very little energy, was sleeping 14-16 hours a day, and was physically unable to do any exercising as I healed. I really felt my mental state start to deteriorate as well; I really struggled not to let depression take over my mind. I really had to force myself to get up and get moving, even if it was just getting out of bed and going up and down stairs. All the time, I knew I had to get back to Bikram Yoga. My first time back was at about week five post-surgery. My muscle definition, flexibility, strength (both mentally and physically) had left me…All I knew was I needed to get back to yoga. Before Cancer, I used Yoga to strengthen my body, improve my flexibility so I could perform better at other sports. After Cancer, I realized the most important aspect of yoga in my opinion is to improve mental and spiritual health. Not that I was all that flexible and strong before Cancer but my body was certainly nowhere near where I once was 5 weeks earlier. As I realized I could not perform even close to where I was 5 weeks earlier, I realized the importance of mental determination, overcoming fear, weakness and doubt was critical. The Barrie Bikram Yoga studio instructors are world class and teach by using real life examples to help us overcome the obstacles in front of us. Their ability to communicate during class at a level that everyone can gain from is uncanny. Each instructor uses a unique style to motivate and communicate. From these instructors and their methods I learned how to dig deep mentally and spiritually to overcome my weaknesses physically. Something I had never had to do because at this point my battle was Mental and spiritual to recover Physical.

I have been back to yoga for about 4 weeks and can feel my confidence coming back daily as I struggle to get back to where I was physically. I learned From Barrie Bikram yoga that being fit physically is not enough…you need to test your body physically, challenge your mind mentally, come to peace spiritually and that no matter what level you are at, you can always be challenged. I have realized that yoga will always be a part of my life and with the help of Barrie Bikram yoga Studio I plan to improve myself physically, mentally and spiritually. For this I will always be grateful to Barrie Bikram Yoga Studio.

Special thanks to Meghan, Siobhan, Jorge, Rebekah, Aki and all the other teachers along the way. Sometimes in life we never get feedback regarding the positive things we do for people. I want you to understand how much you have helped me and the others heal on our journey through life. I will always be grateful for your help and support. What you do makes a difference.

YOGA SPORTS CLUB (YSC)

Want to advance your practice?
Ever wonder what is beyond the 26 & 2 we practice in class?
We practice those postures every week because of their amazing therapeutic value, BUT there are tons more yoga postures out there and if you are curious about expanding your practice, trying out some more “advanced” postures and going on stage to demonstrate them at our annual “yoga competition” then… join us in the yoga sports club!

We will meet Saturdays at 10am starting March 21st.
Our yoga demonstration will be late April or early May

YSC is for EVERYBODY! No need to be super flexible or “advanced” only thing required is a positive attitude and a willingness to work hard!
Please sign yourself in on Mind Body so we have an idea of numbers.
The club is free for any members of the studio.

Thanks!

Any questions can be directed to meghan@bikramyogabarrie.com
Here are some links to the required and optional advanced postures, ENJOY!

http://i.yogasportsfederation.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/4-ADULT-AND-SENIOR-DIVISION-OPTIONAL-ROUTINE.pdf

http://i.yogasportsfederation.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/5-APPROVED-OPTIONAL-POSTURES.pdf

KIDS YOGA in Barrie

Starting: March 20th
Fridays 4:15-5:15pm
Ages: 5-12

A fun, focused kids yoga class. Room is warm (Not Hot)
Kids will learn some of the 26 postures from our adult yoga class, and will explore additional “advanced” postures.
They may sign up to participate in a demonstration on stage in front of our studio community.

sign up teal

5 class session: $50
Drop in: $15

This is our video from last year’s demonstration. It’s sped up (just incase that wasn’t obvious) ENJOY!

For more information or questions email meghan@bikramyogabarrie.com