My Yoga Day at Burton Manor

I’ve tried the yoga DVD’s and felt too shy to go to a yoga class as a ‘beginner’ (a bad experience at a tai chi class instilled fear in me!) so while searching for personal yoga teachers in the Chester area I came across the Burton Manor website, advertising a Yoga Day with a local yoga teacher, Justine (

After showing some of the girls I work with, four of us paid our fees in the new year and looked forward to our day of ‘relaxation and pampering’.

We ranged from a little limber to totally inflexible (me in the latter!) and the first confusion came with burton manor rear 3a 150x150 My Yoga Day at Burton Manorwhat to wear! Looking at the girl on the picture that came with my yoga mat I thought I would copy her style,cropped joggers and a vest top – with a hoody if I got cold and some flat canvas plimsoles, knowing most of the day would be bear foot. We were advised to bring a jumper/blanket and socks for the relaxation part of the day, which we all did.

Finally the day arrived and we were all up and ready to go on time (which for one of our party was miraculous!) and off we went with our satnav pointing us (hopefully) in the direction of Burton Manor!

Burton Manor is lovely, an old country house used for all sorts of local events and classes, there were also classes going on for Quilting, Indian Head Massage and something internety! The grounds are lovely and had it not been raining it would have been lovely to wander around the grounds to walk off our hefty lunch!

Luckily the day began with physical exercise (leaving the relaxation part of the day to after lunch) and after a brief, around the group introduction we began learning some ‘desk yoga’. I was really impressed with the consultation part of the class, after completing forms to say if we had any physical problems the teacher was quick to go through and match up names to forms so I felt in safe hands!

After a brief, around the group introduction we began with an introduction to yoga so we had a good idea about the background to it and what we would be doing during the day. We then learnt some desk yoga moves which was a great way to ease us in, as well as being uyoga 2 150x150 My Yoga Day at Burton Manorseful generally day to day. Simple face massaging techniques and hand and arm stretching, which have been re-used since! After a short tea break we moved on to an hour and a half session of yoga. The time went so quickly! I was worried about my postures and if I was doing it right, but the teacher moved around the class to correct any positions so you soon got a feel for what was right and wrong. These moves I have been able to repeat at home with the use of the hand outs given and its really easy to pick up and do.

Lunch was next – a rather heavy Sunday dinner (which I must say was delicious!) so I was glad to being doing relaxation afterwards! One of us asked for seconds (this was not allowed – but worth a try!) and with a choice of apple crumble or dime bar cake for pudding that soon made up for no seconds!

Once we were suitably full we made our way back to the room for our relaxation afternoon, where we learnt breathing techniques, counting techniques (which is much harder than you think!) and a bit more about yoga itself. We were also asked to write on a piece of paper Past, Present and Future. We then sat for a few minuets just thinking and we had to note which category our thoughts fell into. I’ve never realised before how many of my thoughts are ‘future’ thoughts. We were then asked during the relaxation to think about the word ‘now’ to focus on it to remind us to focus on what’s happening now, rather than dwelling on the past or focusing on the future.

We then had 15 mins of breathing techniques and then a meditation session. Being asked to focus on the word ‘NOW’ really helped. We were then asked to focus on a statement beginning with ‘I am…’ I chose ‘I am calm’ and repeated this when my thoughts began to wander to my ‘future’ worries! During the relaxation we focused on our toes, legs, arms and the rest of our bodies to feel them relax and be aware of them. Some fell asleep and there were some tummy rumbles as we digested our big lunches but it was easy to not be distracted by the noises as I focused on my phrase. The 30 minuets of this relaxation passed so quickly I could not believe it when it was over and time to come back to reality!

After a quick mantra, which I thought I would find uncomfortable to take part in but I really didn’t, it was time for the day to end.

Leaving the day, I felt noticeably ‘lighter’ and relaxed. After carrying on the yoga at home I find it great to calm down after a long day and really easy to keep up with.

With Burton Manor closing its a shame that such a lovely venue, which is a perfect fitting for the day, wont be available but hopefully Justine will be having more yoga retreats soon! I would definitely go again!

Thanks Justine (and the girls who joined me!)

February 17, 2011 · by  · in Blog · Tags:

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