Styles of Yoga

Yoga originated in ancient India, and is one of the six orthodox schools of Hindu philosophy. Derived from the Sanskrit word meaning “union”, its primary goal is to help the student achieve union with the divine by way of specific poses (asanas), breath (pranayama), and meditation to achieve a state of spiritual liberation. Though yoga in the Western world focuses on health and fitness, it is important to appreciate yoga’s long history as a vital component of the Hindu philosophical and theological system.
As one of the most popular of natural therapies in the West, there are many types of yoga available for those seeking health and wellness. The following covers the more popular yoga styles in the West, and helps you have a clearer understanding of the basics of each yoga style so that you can choose one which best suits you and your needs.

Hatha
Hatha yoga is a generic title which describes any yoga style, and most yoga classes advertised in the West will be hatha yoga, unless otherwise stated. When a yoga class is advertised as hatha, it usually refers to a slow-paced and gentle introduction to yoga, incorporating basis poses and simple breathing exercises. Before attending a hatha yoga class, it is wise to ask the yoga teacher where he/she trained and what the class will consist of, e.g. yoga poses, pace, meditation and mantras etc. This will help to to decide if the yoga class will be beneficial for you.

Vinyasa
Vinyasa yoga is perhaps the most common for those wanting yoga purely for fitness. This form of yoga combines a sequence of flowing poses with rhythmic breathing, and is designed as an intense body-mind workout. As a generic term for any form of yoga that involves poses synchronised to the breath (where there is a flow as the poses run together), Vinyasa yoga is also used to describe yoga styles that have derived from it, such as Ashtanga and Power Yoga.

Ashtanga
As mentioned, Ashtanga is a form of yoga that has derived from the concept of Vinyasa yoga. It is fast-paced and based on six series of poses that increase in difficulty as each series moves through one to the next without stopping. As there is no time for adjustments, once a series of yogic poses and breathing are underway the student is encouraged to move through the series of movements without stopping, making for an ideal full body work-out that will stimulate and improve circulation and detoxification, and get that heart rate pumping!
Power Yoga
Another form of yoga derived from Vinyasa, Power yoga is a Western product based on the fundamentals of yoga tradition. More likely to be part of a gym curriculum, Power yoga weaves common yoga poses and breathe techniques to a rigorous exercise workout, designed to strengthen the body and promote flexibility. Power yoga is great as part of your training and fitness routine, but rarely addresses the philosophical aspects of yoga.

Bikram yoga
Designed by Bikram Choudhury, this form of yoga is better known for its use of sauna-like conditions to promote detoxification of the body through sweat. Bikram yoga classes are held in studios designed to replicate India’s climate, mimicking a hot and humid temperature. Here students work through a series of 26 traditional yoga poses (usually slow-paced and gentle) as they sweat and, as a result, promote fresh blood and oxygen to circulate throughout the body. This form of yoga is ideal as a detoxifying exercise to boost the immune system.

Sivananda
For those seeking a more philosophical approach to their yoga, Sivananda yoga is based on the philosophy of Swami Sivananda and his five principles:
1. Proper exercise
2. Proper breathing
3. Proper relaxation
4. Proper diet
5. Positive thinking/meditation

Sivananda yoga classes work through twelve basic poses. As a slow-paced form of yoga, the emphasis is on the full exploration of each pose so that the eventual mastering of each pose is achieved as part of an overall philosophical approach.

Iyengar
Iyengar yoga is based on the teaching of B.K.S Iyengar, one of the most influential yogis of all time. This form of yoga focuses on the subtleties of each pose, which are held much longer than traditional forms of yoga. Focussing on the physical alignment of the body in the poses, students are encouraged to attain perfect poses through consistent practice. This is based on the philosophical belief that once the body is in perfect balance by means of mastering each pose, the mind with reflect this balance. In addition, unlike other forms of yoga, Iyengar also uses props such as belts or chairs to accommodate any needs or structural imbalances in the body, which makes it a good option for those with poor mobility.
Anusara
Anusara means “to step into the current of divine will” and is a modern form of yoga created by American John Friend, with its origins derived from Iyengar yoga. Its practice focusses on three key areas:
• Attitude – by opening to grace one can awaken his/her true nature.
• Alignment – integrated awareness of the different
• Action – pose as expression of the heart and inner freedom.
This form of yoga reintroduces traditional Hindi elements of yoga, however is primary health orientated as it focuses on inner and outer body alignment.
Kundalini
Considered the most comprehensive of yogas, Kundalini is derived from the tantra yoga tradition and refers to the flow of energy and consciousness that exists within us. Incorporating poses and dynamic breathing techniques, combined with specific mantra chanting and chakra awakening, Kundalini yoga acts as a holistic philosophy that keeps the body and mind strong and flexible in times of stress and conflict. This yoga style is suited for those wanting a holistic approach to their yoga practice.

There are many other forms of yoga available, with more yoga traditions and styles being introduced into the West every year. Like all things, however, it is best to have a clear idea of what you hope to achieve from yoga and then find a style that best suits that. Happy yoga practicing from Radiant Heart Yoga Woolloongabba, Brisbane.

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Big Bang Education Brings Hands-on Science workshops to Brisbane Schools

Do your children think science is too hard or think it is really boring? Have you observed that they like putting things together or taking things apart? Do they have a lot of questions? Do they like to investigate and look for answers? If one of your answer is “Yes,” then Big Bang Education is just what your child needs! Big Bang Education provides Brisbane science school workshops, OSHC and vacation care programs as well as high energy and entertaining science themed parties.

Big Bang Education science parties will be sure to excite, entertain and also educate everyone involved. From making slime, blowing giant bubbles and eating ice cream made right in front of you using liquid nitrogen, our science parties will create a memorable experience for years to come. All children attending also receive a science party bag with more experiments so fun can continue at home.

Our science school workshops are guaranteed to be fun and educational. All school programs have been specially designed to be run in parallel with the current Australian science curriculum. It is also organized in a way to help teachers achieve necessary results in understanding science. We know how busy teachers are, so a Big Bang Education science program will save you time and effort, and you know that you are getting a program not fits exactly into the curriculum.

There are different programs for each year level, namely, Foundation/Prep, Year 1, Year 2, Year 3, Year 4 and Year Six. Each of the programs includes hands-on activities so that each child can actively participate and personally experience the science behind each activity. There are a maximum of 30 children per session. Each workshop has entertaining activities and is fully-packed with entertaining demonstrations and fun activities. Most of the activities are designed to be individually performed and then the children will share their new knowledge with the whole class.

Here are more details of each year level’s program:

* Foundation/Prep
Basically, the prep program focuses on hands-on workshop where your child investigates movement. The questions how living things move and how their environment plays an important role to their movement can be answered. The program has 60-minute session with follow-up worksheets that should be emailed to the booking teacher.

* Year 1
For students who are enrolled in the Year 1 program, they experience first-hand the exciting science behind sound and light. They are introduced to the basic facts about light and sound including the senses we are using to detect them. They are shown how to manipulate the various characteristics of a sound like pitch and volume. Lastly, they are taught what are the different sources of sound and light around us.

For its hands-on workshop, students are exposed on the different loudness and pitch of various instruments and have experimented with making sounds by using common objects. They also get to know the colours making up sunlight. After the workshop, they make their own UV light detector.

* Year 2
The Year 2 program focuses on how an object’s motion and shape are affected by push and/or pull. This program is very fun while the children explore the different forces that cause push and pull and how these forces causes an object’s shape to change or affect its movements.

In its hands-on workshop, students will learn how can objects float or sink by different forces affecting the objects that are placed in water. Students also investigate how different toys from various cultures move by pushing and pulling. And the students build parachutes to conduct a class experiment in the most important of all pulling forces, gravity.

* Year 3
The Year 3 program fits into both physical and chemical sciences. In this program, students learn the three different states of matter— solid, liquid and gas. They also get to see on how things can change from one state of matter to another. Students start off watching a science show that showcases some of the dramatic and exciting changes of state using liquid nitrogen.

In the hands-on workshop, students learn how heat is produced and how cooling and heating can cause an object to change its state. They are also taught how to use thermometers in order to measure temperature.

* Year 4
For the Year 4 program, students are entertained by the exciting science behind contact forces and non-contact forces. Contact forces include push and pull and friction. Non-contract forces are magnetism and gravity.

The students will be excited to see and learn how forces can affect the movement of objects during the hands-on workshop. They witness the effects of friction on various surfaces and the forces behind the attraction and repulsion of magnets.

*Year 5
For students under Year 5 program, they get to experience an investigation of the properties of light. During its hands-on workshop, students can get a better visual understanding of how light is absorbed by different material and how it is reflected or refracted. Mirrors are used to experiment on directing beams of light. They also get to see different optical illusions.

*Year 6
The Year 6 program is designed to help the students learn more about electricity, with a specific focus on renewable energies such as solar and wind. The workshop is a self-learning investigation of how electrical circuits work and how to create the different kinds of electrical circuit. The workshop includes learning of using light bulbs and switches and of different ways on how to generate electricity.

All of our Brisbane school science workshop programs are mentored by professional and well-experienced science educators who have more than 10 years of teaching experience. Also, all of our programs are catered to meet the criteria of Australia Curriculum science under the categories of physical sciences and chemical sciences..

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“Offers Over” – why not just cut to the chase?

If you’ve browsed realestate.com.au recently, you will have seen lots of properties listed as “offers over”. You might be wondering why we do this rather than just applying a fixed price.

Why we do it?
Ultimately “offers over” exposes more people to your property online, if used the right way —let’s not forget that some 90% of our buyer enquiry comes through these channels.

For buyers, realesate.com.au has set price bands when searching (ie: $400k to $450k and $450-$500k). Generally, we recommend using ‘offers over’ when you’re on the cusp of a search band.

For example, if you are aiming for a price of $460k for your home. We would list it as ‘offers over $450k’ on realesate.com.au – your property will display for buyers browsing the $400-$450k price range as well as those browsing $450-$500k.

This exposes your property to more people and gets more people to your open (people who may not have considered your property before). Even if the price is slightly out of their price range – they showed up! It’s your agent’s job from there!

We recently listed a duplex in Fitzgibbon as “offers over $300k”, a move designed to encourage a larger subset of buyers to visit the property. The home sold for $315k—an impressive figure given that the highest previous sale for a similar home in the area was $290k!

Misuse of ‘offers over’…
In my experience many agents use ‘offers over’ to avoid the uncomfortable price discussion with their owners. It’s a way for them to list the house at what they (the agent) think it’s worth without agreeing on a clear price expectation with the owner.

Can you make an offer under on an ‘offers over’ property?

Our agents will always have a firm price that the owner is expecting. After all, the first question at the open is ‘how much’?

Buyers should have the capacity to buy at or above the price indicator. Although they can open negotiations with a lower price, almost always the property will sell at or above the indicator.

When we don’t use it…
It’s not effective if your price expectation is not in line with the market.

It’s also not as effective if your ‘offers over’ price sits in the middle of a search band. A property listed as “offers over $420k” will only display for buyers searching $400k-450k”. Of course there may be some exceptions here, but this is a common mistake many agents make!

And last but not least, ‘offers over’ pricing is also useful for auctions or when agents are a little unsure on the market value (ie: for a unique property).

So if we recommend “offers over” on your next houses for sale Aspley rest assured and take it in your stride!

To view property Aspley visit our web site. To find out more about Justin Watt, owner of Watt Realty and previous owner of Harcourts Aspley click here.

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Reflections on Life

Life – what is life! Life can be described in many ways and has many facets and interpretations. It presents us with an ongoing stream of experiences of situations, events and interactions of all kinds with other people and our environment.

It is creation in its magnificent splendour – the original bringing into existence of the universe by God.

For humans it is a journey encompassing all the seasons, colour and streams of life’s experiences.

The miracle of new life in any form of creation brings wonder and amazement as we become aware of the intrinsic formation of such an unexplainable divine plan.

For humans there are many rituals and traditions that help celebrate the different seasons and significant moments in life.

A welcoming of a new child might entail a ritual of a Christening or Blessing in the Christian tradition or perhaps a Naming Ceremony for those less religious. In other cultures and belief systems children are welcomed in a variety of ways but none-the-less mostly it is found to be a joyful celebration of the miracle of new birth.

Life can sometimes be brief – the miracle taken back from where it began just as life is beginning – the mystery of why these sad experiences happen not to be explained.

Life changes for humans as the body grows and life is experienced in new ways. Learning takes place as the brain develops and intelligence is gained and used for the betterment of human kind.

At times the human body suffers from physical limitations this being a challenge as strength of spirit and courage come to the fore.

During the seasons of life ritual is shown to be important such as times of celebration when a person reaches the age of eighteen – a time of maturity and starting out as an adult on life’s journey.

Permanency of relationships can be celebrated by the ritual of Marriage as people start a new chapter along the journey called life.

The miracle of new life can emerge again in this relationship of Marriage as a new life is created and welcomed to the world.

As the continuing seasons and cycles of life are observed, life can represent colour as of a rainbow in these seasons of new beginnings, celebrations, changes and endings.

Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet – colours of the rainbow – how symbolic of life’s journey as the rainbow is composed of the entire spectrum of colour from the shortest wavelength violet to the longest wavelength red.

A closing ritual now takes place as the body has accomplished its purpose and the ending of life as humans know it is honoured and the life celebrated as the spirit travels back to the Divine from whence it came.

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This article supplied by Sandra Hill, Brisbane Wedding Celebrant. For more information about Sandra Hill, weddings, renewal of vows and naming ceremonies in Brisbane, please contact Sandra today.

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