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i have stared at this blank screen for a while and have not found a gentle, tender way to share this news.

the whole way health & fitness studio is closing. march 31, 2018 is the day.

ideally, i would like to share this news in a personal, face-to-face conversation with every single one of you who come to the studio.  that desire is not feasible.

most of you know that my life has changed quite a bit recently; there are new other  aspects of my day-to-day that I want to spend more time with. closing the studio made the most sense whenever i dared entertain the thought. the last few weeks have brought me to a place of peace with the thought.

the studio has always been about you. about each and every clientfriend friendclient who has created a space for themselves and, in the process, crafted an amazing communal space. i have had the gift and the immense pleasure of being the steward of that space.

i will not say good-bye to the collective energy of the studio quite yet. there are still kettlebells to swing and clubbells to swipe; lebarre class squats to do and so much yummy yoga to practice. there is a final a.m. ready session to grace our early morning alarms.

i look forward to spending sweaty. sweet time with you in these next months.

thank you.

closestudiopic

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i recently spent a few days camping with my partner.

annually we spend 4 or 5 nights at a particular island campground. we head to the northside of up east, to a cozy place called Campbell’s Cove (if you are not familiar with the geographical directional lexicon of prince edward island, you need only know it is island-centric and, though i can say the words, it remains a mystery to me).

DCIM100SPORTour day of arrival was steely gray, blustery and wet. the ocean was churning red waves upon the shore. the clouds were low, dancing a chaos of squalls. it was pretty much perfect.

the next morning dawned drier and slight bit more calm. clouds scampered along the early morning sky and the beach seemed to invite us down for a post-coffee stroll. it was the thrice daily ritual of ours days.

DSCN4624the way the sands allowed the waves to insistently rock ‘n’ roll, build and surrender, as the horizon shifted grey then blue then cloud then sky, seduced me into the landscape. i stopped being there and began projecting myself upon/into this mirific backdrop. the outcroppings of rocks, upon which the waves released, the uptakes of the stiff breezes, the passage of time with the skuddle of clouds . . . i wanted to place myself into this beauty. i wanted to strike a yoga pose on the edge of the ocean and have it captured with the camera so i could put it on my facebook page.

only seconds after this desire came upon me, my awareness of how ego-based the desire was crashed across my mind, much like the surf upon the boulders. and i let it go.

no.

i did not.

let it go.

the next day, on one of those lovely beach strolls, i capitulated to ego and handed the camera to udo. i was heading out onto that outcropping of rocks, there, i said, and i was going to stand in vrksasana – tree pose – and would he please snap a picture.

there was still a stiff breeze arriving on shore from the atlantic ocean  and coupled with some recent inflammation in my knee, a gradual growing into tree was required. there was a measure of challenge to holding the asana under these conditions.  after i had felt one with the universe long enough for it to be captured for social media, i climbed back over the rocks toward him, asking if he had gotten the shot.

no. he did not.

what??!

and so, i repeated the above process. this time he declared his part, solicited as it was, of my ego escapade a photographic success.

DSCN4699

later in the day i had time to check out the pictures. there were a few of me prepping for the pose, which explained the missed shot the first time around. the second time, the frame was zoomed in, so much so that the perspective, of my lovely self in this beautiful seascape, was lost.

all this to say, my ego was defeated. not by me, but by him. he has been my ego-eradicator from the beginning.

these photos. the ones where we place ourselves into landscapes and then share them — often multiple versions of them; the ones where we take multiple shots, looking for angles on our faces, the slant of light, the one that has that feel of serenity or excitement or pensiveness or unawareness or accomplishment. our lashes, our hair, the tilt of our head, the turn of the body, the shadow defining a muscle, that oh-so-horrible duck-face evolution of lips pursed so awkwardly … the entire process, from idea to selection to adding effects to captioning … these are important. they are important as our teachers. they tell us about how attached we are to our egos and give us more stuff to work with.

he recognized my ego and he deflated it. i am so very thankful for his gurudity in my life. i have so much more work to do. i am constantly amused by and curious about it all.

all

I am not this hair, I am not this skin, I am the soul that lies within ~ Rumi

 

 

DCIM100SPORTi step sweet gingerly

on the carpet of wild strawberry blossoms

strewn alongside the driveway

mourning doves scatter as i advance

they lift and spiral outward upward

like the dance of dandelion seeds on the wind

i run awkward

the soles of my feet

have softened in the dewy grass

and have awakened

to the richness of the textures

that is the asphalt

i run solely

my ears fill with the succession of cars passing

and then

they empty of the roar

the kirtan of birdsong rises all around me

and settles venticularly

vibrating

i do not know if it is internal or external

i run blurry

the air sits heavy humid

DCIM100SPORT

DCIM100SPORT

immediately sticky on my skin

my fingers tingle with the coolness of early

the sweet scenty aura

of apple blossoms warms me

and slugs hieroglyph

messages of love I leap over

i run hearty

practice3i unfurl my mat on the deck amidst intoxicants

of barely blossomed lilacs

with just out fragrances

bumbling bees

as they buzz the sound of the universe

morning practice

for_peace

the asphalt warm as it caresses the underbelly of my foot

a gentle south breeze slowly watlzing the laundry on the line

mating and nesting songs being passed in a stand of trees

foliage escaping once tight buds.

running. receiving. rejoicing.

hold fast to the mother

 

runhome

at the end of the run

i am not a runner.

yet every spring, song birds beckon me outside, to be their audience as they are mine. it is the same universal energy which led teenage me to cut high school classes in april and, for a short while in my adult life, led me to believe that ‘spring cleaning’ was actually a thing.

i generally wait until the morning temperatures reach 7°C; the encumberances of cold weather running do not suit me well.

today it was 14°C when i got up. and humid. go time!

the asphalt under foot was warm and the shoulder of the road was spring time soft; so pleasant to run on. the warm breeze from the south, the sweat gathering along my hairline, the birdsong.

running with the mind of meditation.

yoga for cool down.

a great start to friday.

may we all be happy just the way we are.

 

 

 

6am sun

6am sun

i ran outside this morning for the first time since forever.

i did not run far or fast, but i ran fresh, with the heavy morning dew collecting along my hairline, alongside corduroy fields and amidst a veritable symphony of morning song birds.

i was grateful to be there.

the 12 students of chair ytt

the 12 students of chair ytt

the weekend before last, i attended a chair yoga teacher training course. getting to the program was a bit of vehicular adventure, but the mishaps and setbacks were well worth it.

the course was held in the very special space of Fall River Yoga Centre and offered by Julie Palmer of Yoga4All in the Annapolis Valley.  Julie has a depth and breadth of presence, knowledge and skill. the eleven other students in the course brought an abundant diversity to the experience; the centre quickly opened into a sharing, practice, exploring and learning space.

chair yoga is an adaptive form of yoga, well-suited to any body with ambulatory or joint mobility challenges, concerns with balance, and a variety of issues often associated with aging, though not necessarily so.

the course started each day with a master class, in which Julie opened the class with a meditation/centering practice. this was followed by pranayama (breathing exercises) and warm up movements.  seated yoga poses and standing yoga poses followed. and then optional resistance training or hand/finger mobility with neurological patterning, self massage and another meditation. the master classes were all wrapped up, of course, in a luscious silky ribbon of relaxation.

chair yoga, in case you’re wondering, can be plenty challenging if that is where your practice is. it is also a mat/chair time which begins right where you are. (yeah, the cape bretoner in me wanted to say: right where you’re at)

over the weekend, we explored seated yoga postures and standing postures using the chair. there was a good deal of fun and creativity in the room, and all manner of learned lessons and tips from the participants.

a variety of pranayama techniques, hand mudras, and do-in self-massage were shared and learned along with some very fun silly shakers offered up by one of the other students.

issues of concern when working with an older adult population were covered quite well. from hearing to blood pressure, from arthritis to osteoporosis. the information was just meaty enough for someone new/er to working with this population to have confidence in themselves and fingertip access to a fantastic reference source.

i had been eyeing this program for a couple of years now and am so glad i had the opportunity to attend. i’ll be using so much of this in the programming i already offer seniors.

i am grateful to Julie, for creating such a wonderful container for our learning and curiosity and to all the other participants who filled the room with comfort and creative energy.

namaste.

wsu0u1TDtmXqpEuzt2Hroo8kLs6PGX3S8lSWyLz-acEit is just short of 9 years — May 2006 — since i purchased my first set of kettlebells: three fat-handled glossy-painted cold cannon balls with handles. an 8kg, a 12kg, and a 16kg.

and so it began.

from books put out by Dragon Door, i began teaching myself kettlebell movements and began incorporating a bit of kettlebell training with personal training clients.

AKC training clean&snatch circuit 2

Agatsu Certification 2007

in late 2007 i attended my first certification course and learned so much! it was a heady weekend full of sweat, bruises, and total mind engagement. with this, my initial fascination converted into a passion, both to use and to share this unique and effective way of training.

after that first cert, i continued using the kettlebell as part of my personal training repertoire, but i also developed a group fx format with kettlebells which i eventually had opportunity to roll out.

today, january 28th 2015, is the 7th anniversary of the first group kettlebell class i offered.

since then, i have taught kettlebell skills in a group format and led group classes 2975 times.

and because kettlebell training has so many nuances and iterations, i have also since completed 6 additional kettlebell certification programs and attended/audited quite a few other kettlebell trainings, such as workshops and certifications courses.

kettlebell-pics-034the opportunities for learning are endless. there are at least 4 or 5 additional kettlebell certs i’d love to take. if the time is right, some of them will happen. i am happy to leave that to the future.

the kettlebell universe is an interesting and quickly expanding place, filled with all manner of passion, talent, commitment, skillful execution, amazing coaching, and creativity. it engages and pushes limits and evolves. this is what i most love about kettlebell training.

little did i imagine what would come of my fascination with kettlebells when i came upon them in a 2005 magazine spread. (you can read more on that here)

daily i am grateful for how kettlebell training has contributed to my life and that of my family and communities.

thank you to those from whom i have directly learned: Shawn Mozen of Agatsu, Ajamu Bernard and Drew Miller and Stephanie Yankovich of KBell Training Academy, Steve Cotter of Full KOntact Kettlebells, Sharon Shiner SFGII, Jason Dolby and John Buckley of Orange Kettlebell Club. and to the many, many who share top notch on-line resources which have contributed to my knowledge.

and so it continues.

swing a kettlebell

cbyphotoJoin me in this 6 week CLUBBELL YOGA series which I am so pleased to offer at a special one-time-only rate as part of the Island Launch.

This 7 and a half hours of practice for $48 + hst.

Numbers are limited.

Sundays. 8:00am – 9:15am

Contact me at thewholeway@wendychappell.com or call 902.894.8943 for information and/or to register

Clubbell Yoga is a fusion of strength training & yoga, created by Summer Huntington and Scott Sonnon, to improve quality of movement. The practice will help to improve shoulder stability, core strength, single leg balances and vinyasa yoga transitions. Every class focuses on refining alignment and motor patterns, increasing awareness of core and shoulders. You will be empowered to move better.

This fusion of two ancient traditions – clubbell and yoga – will help you strengthen and tone your arms, legs and core in every exercise or pose.

Clubbell Yoga Class Format:
Joint Mobility Vinyasa warm up specific to the Clubbell Yoga Flow for the class
Mini conditioning circuit
Clubbell Yoga Flow
Deep Stretch/Fascia Release/Decompression poses
Savasana

Class is broken down into three phases and will be a wonderful addition to your Sunday morning, your week, your life:
Awaken
Condition
Practice

To learn more, listen to Summer talk about this practice:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NiH2E7PD5EE

beautiful butterycup

beautiful butterycup

i overslept this morning.  my intention was to take a 5 or 5:30am run.  my body needed more sleep than running. mmmmm

when i got up at 6:45, i passed on the run, did some happy chores with the extra time and headed off to the gym to teach classes.

i came home from work a bit earlier than expected.

flowery run 024so, the run happened.

for someone who likes the quiet runs of the  early mornings, the world is an entirely different run in the heat of the late morning sun.

as the breeze fell, waves of heat washed past me. it wasn’t long before my body began to develop a humid microclimate of its own.

the birds were subdued, brief soft calls from high branches. do they nap in the heat?

the asphalt offered a cool, but friendly, shoulder in the short stretches of dappled shade where overhead leaves sang rainstick songs. this in contrast to the warmth the road is holding in places exposed to our accumulating days of hot bright sunshine. a natural inspiration for in-floor heating?

flowery run 018blooms. everywhere! perhaps the sparseness of birdsong and the sun higher in the sky allowed my attention to rest on the corridor of wild, and not so wild, flowers along the route.

winking brown eyed susans overshadowed by the graceful noddings of queen anne’s lace, impossibly statuesque on spindly stalks. white clouds of yarrow snuggled into the yellow buzzy busy-ness of  st. john’s wort. shy fleabane peeking out from under the protective umbrella leaves of hostas. the march of goatweed and tendrilling crown vetch, delightful butter & eggs, abundant clover, laughing lilies. daisies and buttercups and dandelions, oh my.

a wsw wind, the compassionate sister of the churlish outbound breeze, nudged me home as my lower lids gathered and released, with each blink, the salty sting of sweat. my mind free and my bare feet singing a rhythmic song of solitude.

i am thankful for the new perspectives of the run. everyday is another opportunity to soften and open. blooming goodness.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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