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First he thought it would be impossible – and now he's hooked

 

Yoga classes at Living Colours Diving Resort

Living Colours hosted our first Scuba-Yoga Retreat. For me it seemed an obviouse combination - yoga and diving. Breathing and living. Or so I thought.

Having not touched my toes for some time I had heard that yoga could help. Signing up for the yoga classes taught by Cynthia I thought they would be a lot of sitting around in different poses whilst hyperventilating. I was right. Only in the fact that Cynthia was gonna be the guru, everything else I thought I knew about yoga was wrong and I got my first taste at 05:30 for some sunrise meditation. That's right 05:30.

The morning meditation lasted around 15 minutes and the first one was guided. Its amazing to me how many thoughts I had to silence to clear my head and meditate, only to find that another thought had sneaked into my brain while pushing others out. But after a few minutes of guided meditation I was getting closer, my breathing slowed and I enjoyed the sunrise, remember it's 05:30.

 

Yoga and diving are great together

After the meditation we moved onto the “yoga that the photos look like”.  This again was priority on breathing and moving your body into different poses.  Hungry dog, crazy baby, cat pulling its legs, and many more that I forget the names.  After a while beads of sweat were forming and I realized my second misconception about yoga, it's bloody hard work. Also as soon as I moved my ample body into one pose I was ordered into another, and another, and another. Glansing around everyone else seemed to be grasping the poses with less persperation than myself, almost looking like a mirror image of the person next to them. Army flashbacks continued as our Sgt aka Guru ordered us into more poses  until thankfully moving slowly into the sitting position, you know the one with your legs crossed looking like a dreadlocked sweaty buddah. And with a slow and dramatically loud exhale it was over.

After the morning physical episode I approached the afternoon session with caution. The afternoon session was a yin yoga, or was it zen? Well names are not important what is important was the positions we got ourselves into were more of very long stretches, pulling joints and muscles  I haven't felt for years if not at all. Moving into positions and holding them for minutes (until Cynthia's iphone went “ping”), stiffeling a groan as my boddy moved out of them. This yoga style enabled my breathing to be easier to control and more time to get my position correct, with some assistance sometimes. Until after an hour of twisting grunting, pulling and breathing the final “ping” sounded and we moved into the sweaty buddah position.

The day before the yoga started I was thinking of ways to get out of it, after the first days yoga I was hooked! You couldn't drag me away from attending a session, even to the point when we took one 05:30 session away and replaced it with a longer afternoon session, I missed my morning meditation and sunrise. Being able to touch my toes was one thing, increased mobility and absence of back pain was amazing. Now booking my own holiday I have one thing in mind. YOGA.  

Al

Pictures: Kari Minkkinen, Heini Härsilä

Yin yoga and diving at Living Colours Diving Resort