Namaste Tribe: Meet Allison

Each week for the next few weeks we will be highlighting on of our incredible Namaste tribe members! With so many inspiring, passionate folks working at Namaste we felt it was a crime to keep their shining personalities from the rest of the world.

Meet Front Desk Staffer: Allison Jones

Who are you?
My name is Allison and I am originally from Florida.

How long have you been with Namaste?
I have been with Namaste for just over 3 months!

What is your favorite style of yoga?
My favorite style of yoga is Bhakti.

Any big dreams you are close to actualizing?
I recently finished my Masters in Counseling Psychology and a mentorship with an Intuitive/Shamanic Healer. Right now I’m working to start my own intuitive healing practice, and it’s very exciting!

What are you involved with outside the studio?
I host a weekly hip hop radio show.

What is your favorite thing about the Bay Area?
The people, the forests, and the fog.


AllisonProfileAAs a student of bhakti yoga, Allison comes to Namaste with an open heart and a love of service. Allison is a recent graduate of the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology and is drawn to spiritual and creative practices that facilitate the healing of past trauma. Allison is currently studying Intuitive Healing with her mentor and also helps run a grief-support non-profit (thedinnerparty.org). On her days off Allison can usually be found hiking in the Oakland hills or road-tripping to nearby hot springs or swimming holes.

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A Note on Yoga for Grief

by Ken Breniman

Grief is a multifaceted response to loss, particularly to the loss of someone or something, who has passed away, to which a bond or affection was formed. Although conventionally focused on the emotional response to loss, it also has physical, cognitive, behavioral, social, spiritual, and philosophical dimensions. Source: Wikipedia 

I am very honored to be offering the Yoga for Grief: Healing Hearts/Healing Bodies gathering at Namaste Berkeley on Saturday, December 17th. I have been offering this workshop for the past six years throughout the Bay Area and have learned so much from the participants.

In the ancient story of “Kisa Gotami and the Mustard Seed”, Ms. Gotami realizes some form of loss has touched everyone. Over my years of leading grief healing sessions, I have realized this continues to be a truth in our modern-day society. In my experience, I have come to understand the main difference with societies understanding of grief today is how grief is quickly pathologized and so often grieving persons can feel isolated and not understood. Historically, the process of grieving has gone through many evolutionary changes due to pressure individuals receive to handle a loss in a way that is culturally acceptable.

The practice of embalming, which became standard in the funerary business around the turn of the 20th century, further dissociated us from death. Funerary directors, like doctors, became authority figures and took over the mourning process, while embalming changed how the body felt, looked, and smelled. “It’s amazing how we can block out the truth of death,” says Frank Ostaseski, who founded Zen Hospice in 1987 and the Metta Institute in 2004,  which are based in Northern California and offer educational programs about death, dying, and mourning. . “If you are surrounded by a family or a culture that says, ‘Don’t talk or think about it,’ it can hinder our capacity to acknowledge the loss.” – Excerpt from Grief is Good

My hope is that my workshop and other gatherings for the bereaved can help to normalize the grieving process. The gathering is here to provide space and create a supportive community setting for each person to show up with all their feelings and memories. Once individuals feel comfortable enough to recognize the feelings of loss we move into being able to tap into the healing powers of a yoga practice that is specifically modified to address many of the aspects of grief.

Please remember that if you are experiencing loss whether it is from early childhood or more recent, that grief can easily get stored in the body. And also remember that the human heart grieves all different types of loss. Never feel that somehow what you are grieving is ‘lesser than’ or doesn’t deserve healing. Loss can include the death of a person, death of a pet, a life transition such as a break up, a divorce, losing a job or moving. Many past participants have come to mourn the loss of a healthy happy childhood. The gathering is open to anyone who is experiencing any loss. In addition to yoga, breathwork and relaxation practices, there is also an optional ear acupuncture session offered at the end of the workshop during an extended Yoga Nidra.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about the upcoming workshop or are interested in learning more about healthy grieving.


KenProfileAKen has practiced yoga for over 10 years and became certified with Yoga Alliance as a RYT-200 after graduating from Yoga Tree’s Yoga Teacher Training program in 2006. Yoga Alliance has recognized him as a ERYT-200/RYT-500 as he completed his Yoga Therapy training at Ananda Seva Mission in July 2010.   Ken is very excited to be joining the Namaste family.

In his classes, Ken provides eclectic non-denominational Hatha yoga guidance, honoring a variety of traditions, such as Iyengar alignment principles, invigorating Kudalini Kriya, and playful Acroyoga-inspired partner work.  He invites you to embrace SIMPLICITY, PATIENCE and COMPASSION as you deepen your practice and your connection with your true Self. Ken offers Yoga Therapy workshops on a variety of topics such as restorative yoga, grief, relationships, stress management and coping with chronic illness.  In addition to yoga, Ken also serves as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, clinical supervisor and a private practice yoga therapist in the Bay Area. Daniel Quinn and Paulo Coelho are among his favorite authors.

His life work of service is inspired by Ram Dass’ words:  “We are all just walking each other hOMe.”

Please visit Ken’s website at www.kenbreniman.com  or email him at kjbreniman@gmail.

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3 Reasons Yoga is Perfect Birth Prep

Preparing to give birth is an incredibly exciting and complex time. At Namaste, we are fortunate to have a thriving community of prenatal and postnatal mommies who continue to gather to celebrate the gift of life and the beauty of yoga. We love finding new ways to help our moms relax and flourish during this period of growth whether it is through our Prep for Birth workshops or creating a sacred space like our Namaste Lounge. Here are our top three reasons why yoga is our most recommended resource when preparing for birth:

Movement

Gentle movement and exercise are important during pregnancy. Many soon to be moms will realize that the exercise routine they had previous to becoming pregnant may no longer work with their new bodies. Yoga is a soft, nurturing way for pregnant women to become re-familiarized with their evolving bodies, increase overall vitality, and enhance both relaxation and mindfulness tools that can prove helpful in the delivery room. Yoga’s intimate way of achieving both exercise and personal connection to this special time in life is a gift which benefits include a boosted immune system, quicker recovery, and better sleep.

Connection

Whether it is a women’s first birth or not, having a new baby can bring up a lot of emotions, questions, and concerns. Having a strong community for support can be a lifesaver for new mothers. Prenatal yoga is a perfect way for women to connect with other like-minded mommies in the neighborhood. Having a community provides new moms with information that is tried and true. A strong network of prenatal and postnatal moms creates a forum where women can learn from each other and share what birth prep techniques have worked and which have not. Having more first-hand knowledge allows for the first time mothers to feel at ease and less fearful of the birthing process.

Love

Love is such a huge part of the birthing experience. Self-love, new love for the baby, compassion and love for your partner and support group all are important for creating a healthy, happy atmosphere for baby’s birth. Yoga teaches how to let go of judgement and criticism and instead practice compassion for ourself and others. Prenatal yoga is optimal for keeping this compassion in the forefront. With a growing and changing body, it is easy for women to sometimes feel not as great as they did pre-pregnancy. Hormonal changes can lead to erratic thoughts, and achy muscles may leave women feeling worn out. A regular yoga practice is a gentle reminder to be kinder to one’s self and to continue to cultivate love and appreciation.

Mae_Amelia


 

Weekly Prenatal Class Schedule:  Berkeley | Oakland

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Kameko's Traditional Herbal Chai

Fall is here and we are not waiting a second longer to start indulging in delicious vata pacifying, soul soothing, autumn inspired meals! Up first on our menu, Namaste teacher and Ayurvedic practitioner Kameko Shibata’s Traditional Herbal Chai recipe:

Traditional Herbal Chai

Begin by boiling the green cardamon pods until they look full and bloated. You can reboil with fresh water and the same spices for several days in 3-4 qt. of fresh water (grab a big pot!)

Chai TeaIngredients:
3 cinnamon sticks
2-3 TBSP green cardamom pods, whole coriander seeds
1 TBSP whole black pepper
1 TBSP fennel seed -optional- for summer and digestive support
tons of grated ginger
2 star anise (optional)
traditionally assam black tea was added at the end, milk and sugar (jaggery)

Chai Tea

Enjoy as a sweet morning drink or afternoon pick-me-up. Send us your pictures of your homemade chai by tagging us on instagram  at @ilovenamaste using the hashtag #MyChai!


Kameko

Check out Kameko’s upcoming Fall Ayurvedic Cleanse at Namaste! Begins this Saturday, October 4.

WELLNESS TREATMENTS WITH KAMEKO: Kameko Shibata combines her passion for ayurvedic medicine, bodywork and yoga into a comprehensive healing modality that empowers people to heal themselves. She received her Ayurvedic Practioner certification from the Dhyana Center of Health Sciences, where she went on to complete over 1,000 hours in a 2-year internship under her teacher, DeAnna Batdorff.

Kameko’s healing hours: Saturdays 10:15am – 2pm
Please check out : 
www.kamekoarts.com

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20

Kameko’s Traditional Herbal Chai

Fall is here and we are not waiting a second longer to start indulging in delicious vata pacifying, soul soothing, autumn inspired meals! Up first on our menu, Namaste teacher and Ayurvedic practitioner Kameko Shibata’s Traditional Herbal Chai recipe:

Traditional Herbal Chai

Begin by boiling the green cardamon pods until they look full and bloated. You can reboil with fresh water and the same spices for several days in 3-4 qt. of fresh water (grab a big pot!)

Chai TeaIngredients:
3 cinnamon sticks
2-3 TBSP green cardamom pods, whole coriander seeds
1 TBSP whole black pepper
1 TBSP fennel seed -optional- for summer and digestive support
tons of grated ginger
2 star anise (optional)
traditionally assam black tea was added at the end, milk and sugar (jaggery)

Chai Tea

Enjoy as a sweet morning drink or afternoon pick-me-up. Send us your pictures of your homemade chai by tagging us on instagram  at @ilovenamaste using the hashtag #MyChai!


Kameko

Check out Kameko’s upcoming Fall Ayurvedic Cleanse at Namaste! Begins this Saturday, October 4.

WELLNESS TREATMENTS WITH KAMEKO: Kameko Shibata combines her passion for ayurvedic medicine, bodywork and yoga into a comprehensive healing modality that empowers people to heal themselves. She received her Ayurvedic Practioner certification from the Dhyana Center of Health Sciences, where she went on to complete over 1,000 hours in a 2-year internship under her teacher, DeAnna Batdorff.

Kameko’s healing hours: Saturdays 10:15am – 2pm
Please check out : 
www.kamekoarts.com

Please follow and like us:
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