Lime House Yoga studio is 100 percent a 'wow' venue. Set a short way back from the wild stretch of coastline between St Agnes & Newquay, the building radiates openness and light. You can tell that a lot of love, inspiration and hard graft have gone into the creation of this beautiful space, and it's an absolute pleasure to be welcomed in.
I visited for an 'Innovation in the Wilds' networking event which is part of the University of Exeter's Future Focus project.
The concept is that networking and innovation can happen more authentically in natural spaces and that in offices and boardrooms. My work at Strength in Feathers totally subscribes to this philosophy, and I can't wait for the next one at The Wave in Bristol. These are funded by the European Regional Development Fund meaning they are free to local businesses like us, which is even better.
Settling into the space and enjoying the view, we were joined by Jock who told us a little of Lime House's story and led a playful practice for our group. His knowledge and dedication to yoga is palpable, and I really enjoyed the holistic description of yoga as so much more than just flexibility and 'twisting your body into pretzel shapes'.
Grounding us with breathwork and a 'proper' seated posture, Jock spoke about the ancient texts of yoga and the emphasis on clearing tension in the body - not so that we can move more - but so that we can sit still more comfortably.
Each time we experience pain or discomfort in the body, it's a distraction from the mindfulness or meditation that we are trying to practice, as well as a constant drain on our energy.
I am a terrible fidgiter and have to work really hard to sit, stand or lie still. My breathwork practice helps enormously with this, using longer exhales to down-regulate my nervous system and relax into stillness.
By extending my exhales to be longer than my inhales, I really feel my whole system slowing down and 'landing' into the space I'm in. I use this technique a lot, both in stressful situations, and when I'm 'buzzing' in a good way but want to bring myself back to calm.
You can also use this technique the other way around, increasing inhales to 'wake up' and get going if you're in a very restful state. Breathpod videos explain this really well!
Our hour of yoga included a build up of sun salutations and learning some flows, as well as focusing our attention directly on specific parts of the body, such as our feet. Jock had us try lifting up just our middle three toes - an excellent practice for mind-body connection as well as foot muscle dexterity.
I really enjoyed the playfulness of this session, as well as the detail and storytelling about where some of the names of poses come from. I'm very familiar with my restorative shavasanas (surely the best bit of yoga!?) and had heard it translated as 'corpse pose', but didn't know that the Sanskrit name also references the Hindu god Shiva - an ancient yogic guru.
Lying back into my shavasana, I also clocked the hooks on the ceiling for the aerial yoga which is regularly run at Lime House - I'll definitely be back for this! There was such a warm sense of community at the studio, and I'm hoping to make it to their summer fete and solstice evening, as well as hopefully some Wim Hof workshops in the future.