Meditation and Mindfulness during COVID-19
How can we find calm inside when our anxiety levels are at an all time high during the coronavirus outbreak? Whether we are juggling homework, home schooling for the first time, or living on our own without distraction, learning simple mindfulness techniques can help relieve stress and anxiety. Here are some helpful meditation and mindfulness […]

How can we find calm inside when our anxiety levels are at an all time high during the coronavirus outbreak?

Whether we are juggling homework, home schooling for the first time, or living on our own without distraction, learning simple mindfulness techniques can help relieve stress and anxiety.

Here are some helpful meditation and mindfulness techniques from our leading health and wellness gurus in Asia:

Meditation to help you open your heart, bringing love and compassion to yourself and to those around you. Rajesh is a resident life improvement mentor at Kamalaya and is available for personal consultations and meditation once Kamalaya reopens.

Kamalaya: positive visualization meditation with Sujay

Sujay is also a wonderful life improvement mentor at Kamalaya, bringing inner peace and joy to health and wellness clients Here take a sweet and vivid visualization journey with Sujay.

Kamalaya: pranayamic breathing and vipassana meditation with Smitha

Take an inner journey to a calmer state of mind with this guided meditation led by Life Enhancement Mentor Smitha Jayakumar at Kamalaya Wellness Sanctuary in Koh Samui. Pranayama, or balanced breathing, is a great way to become aware of breathing and use it to bring calm and balance to life.

Chiva Som has been the leader in health and wellness in Asia for over 25 years. Here, Wellness Sanctuary yoga and meditation instructor Parajmot explains a simple meditation in a 1:37 minute video, perfect for those new to mindfulness techniques.

Chiva Som: Pranayama with Kamlesh

Chiva Som Resident yoga instructor Kamlesh Kumar teaches how to practice Pranayama, or balanced breathing in this short video. Prana means "life force" or "white energy" and Yama means to develop. This ancient technique of alternative nasal breathing expands your chi and allows for more balance and peace. Namaste.

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Considered one of the privileged moments of meditation, dawn before sunrise gently inaugurates a new day. “Known as Amrit Velā, he is naturally conducive to mindfulness and may be the clearest window to discovering peace,” says David Melladew, Amanyara resident master in traditional oriental medicine. Join David on IGTV Instagram of Amanyara

Aman Wisdom: The Power of Breath with Geshe Yong Dong

geshe yong dong
Geshe Yong Dong (courtesy Aman Resorts)
Internationally renowned Bon Tibetan Buddhist, Geshe YongDong (Geshe La) guided exclusive guests of Soul Sanctuaries while staying at Aman Resorts in Asia. Stress and negative emotions are often accompanied by shallow, rapid, and uncontrollable breathing. But by controlling your breathing, you can control how you feel. Geshe YongDong focuses on developing slow, conscious breathing, connecting the breath to the mind so that you can choose how you feel on a daily basis. Follow Aman stations on Instagram and find Geshe La's words of wisdom on IGTV. He also has his own Youtube channel here as well.

We hope you take this opportunity to retire until you can travel to Asia with us again soon.

Healthy and happy

Joanne and the Soul Sanctuaries team


Everyone seems to be a yogi these days, from your BFF to your co-worker to your aunt—heck, even dogs and goats are getting their zen on. But if you have yet to attempt Warrior II or Mountain Pose, taking your first yoga chic can be a little intimidating. What if your hands sweat and you fall off the mat ? What if you hate it ? What if you can’t do a solo. damn. pose ?

Okay, rewind a second—there’s a reason so many people have hopped on a mat over the past few years. ' Yoga is a non-judgmental practice, ' says Claire Ewing, certified yoga instructor and studio digital directeur for CorePower Yoga. It’s is a totally accessible way to unwind and break a sweat, so there’s nothing to worry about before checking out a chic.

But to help you feel a little more comfortable before you say your first ' om ' or ' namaste, ' Ewing has some yoga tips to answer all those questions floating around your head.

When in doubt, Ewing says opt for a vinyasa flow class, ' where you have the opportunity to explore the postures and fundamental principles of yoga. ' These are the types of classes most of your friends probably do, and it’s a great form of yoga for beginners. But oui, it never hurts to check out a couple different genres of classes to see what feels best to you.

' Definitely go for something breathable and easy to move in, ' says Ewing. ' You will work up a sweat, so consider wearing something with moisture-wicking abilities. ' Oh and FYI : Yoga is a no-shoes kind of workout, so don’t worry about sporting your best sneakers addict to class.

Like with any workout, it’s totally a personal preference how much you mazout pre-yoga. But Ewing points out that yoga is a pretty intense workout, and fueling your body properly will help you get the most out of your practice. Keep it light, though, ' I usually start with a protein shake or bar knowing that the classes can physically take you in dynamic directions, ' says Ewing. ( A. k. a. don’t down that massive avo toast right before chic. ) If you’re just having a small pre-workout snack, you can probably do that about 30 minutes beforehand; but wait a full one to two hours before sérieux out after a meal.

She adds that hydrating beforehand is also key, especially if you ever do attempt a heated flow. ' Drink a full glass of water about two hours before class—that way you have something to sweat out and you will feel better during chic. '

' Absolutely ! ' says Ewing. ' A regular yoga practice increases flexibility and strength in your groupes musculaires. It has you work your full range of motion in every joint of your body and build strong and long groupes musculaires. ' ( In fact, vinyasa yoga even made this list of the top calorie-burning workouts. )

This depends on the type of yoga class you take—for example, a slow flow or hatha class may require you to hold a pose for an extended period of time. But in vinyasa, ' it comes down to the intention of how the forme was designed, ' says Ewing. ' For example, balancing poses are held longer to benefit concentration and focus, while transition postures build strength while teaching fluidity in movement. '

For the most part, though, poses are held for three to five breaths during the first round to help them sink into your memory. Then they’re held for a single breath when you repeat the pose, to help amp up the cardio component of yoga.

Don’t stress ! No one expects you to master every pose your first go-round ( or really, ever—it’s a constant learning process ). Your yoga instructor should offer alternatives for pose modifications, especially for the more challenging ones. ' Your breath is key in yoga, if you are losing sight of this, you may want to consider modifying or completely backing off, ' says Ewing. And don’t be afraid to ask your instructor for assistance.

Also, try to avoid comparing yourself to the other yogis in the room—all bodies are unique, and have varied strengths and challenges. Plus, every time you step on the mat, it’s going to feel a little different, ' for both your body and your mind, ' says Ewing. ' If there is one thing you can take away from the classroom, it is learning how to modify and create a practice that is fit for you. '

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