feathersLizzie visited Rebecca at Breathing Tree to complete Day 14 of her third year running Yoga Challenge.

Lizzie takes one yoga class a day throughout the month of January, with a different yoga teacher each day and as many different yoga studios that she can manage to get to. Lizzie is also a few weeks post liver transplant so it’s great for Rebecca and Breathing Tree to be part of her recuperating and rebuilding phase.

Lizzie’s goal is for her to participate in a diversity of classes, to see where she is in her personal practice, and to connect with some new teachers and studios along the way. She has found it to be a good practice not just of yoga on the mat, but also as a practice in patience, withholding judgement, a writing exercise,  and time management.

Here is Lizzie’s blog of her experience.

Day Fourteen, Lizzie’s Yoga Challenge: Transformational Breathing with Rebecca Dennis

I feel as if I may have cheated a little bit on my “yoga” challenge yesterday as I decided to use my Transformational Breath session with Rebecca as my daily ‘class’, but after all, a large part of practicing yoga is about the breath, and I’m still supposed to be ‘taking it easy’. After my liver transplant, as a part of my recovery Rebecca Dennis offered her services to help me find and deepen my breath, which was severely limited as a result of the surgery. I was very grateful, and took her up on the offer as soon as it was possible.

My third session with Rebecca was yesterday at Indaba Yoga Studio, and I arrived feeling tired after a full day of work. The room was dimly lit with a few candles, and a cushioned area on the floor invited me to lie down. As with the first two times, the breath that Rebecca asks for the clients to breath takes a bit of work. It is an open mouthed inhale and exhale, with no lapse in between the in and out. While the breath gets going, she invited my breath into my pelvis and chest with an acupressure touch, and also worked on other areas of the body as I continued to breath such as my legs, shoulders, back and jaw. Several times she asked for me to make sounds on a long exhale, and as the other two times, the breath became somewhat easier towards the end of the session and the time went very quickly. By the end I felt deeply relaxed and calm, like I could have gone on breathing just lying there for hours. The mind really turns off during the session and a quiet place deep within is easily accessible; at least, this has been my experience.

Rebecca is highly gifted at holding a therapeutic space, and she has the right mix of being an encouraging practitioner and an excellent listener. She is honest, yet compassionate with feedback, as impressions come up for her while giving the session. There is no doubt that my breath has become deeper and more balanced as a result of her work and I’m looking forward to seeing her again when I’m a little bit further on with my physical recovery. It was a welcome treat for me yesterday at the end of a busy work day, and prepared me for today’s practice.

For more information please visit Lizzie