YOGA in the mountains

Gabi reveals the secret of relaxing in an active way

“Everyday we put a lot of effort to keep our body dynamic and tonic, but we often forget to train our mind.. it needs some stretching, too, like every other muscle. Personally, I always tried to balance the everyday stress combining sport and relaxing.” Gabi, hiking guide and yoga guru at the Schneeberg hotel, lights up as she speaks. The truth is, in a way, she is always bright. We managed to have her secret revealed: “the fresh mountain air, the herbs’ good smell, the sun on my skin, the energy of the alpine panorama of the Ridnaun Valley: all of this already helps in reaching the wellbeing. Adding the yoga, an activity which dates back to 500 b.C., I can reach my balance in the best way: the starting exercises involve breathing, to loosen the tension; the physical exercises or position (asana) allow me to regain strength and energy. Yoga, whose roots are found in India, is first of all a philosophy based on the olimo, that is to say: a 360° benefit, it helps to reduce one’s stress, promotes the physical wellbeing and the ability to concentrate; it also boosts the vitality. It may sound strange but yoga can be for everybody: just think that the babies unconsciously do such movements in the womb; moreover, there are no age limits. However – and I always tell the participants before starting the lesson – you should never go beyond your limits, just stay in your own comfort zone. For the same reason it is important to practice these movements only if one feels secure. I always check among the participants if there are pregnant ladies, if anybody suffers from slipped disc, has knees problems or has underwent surgery in the recent time. I also ask if anyone has already some yoga experience. I always try to adapt to every situation; my suggestion is generally to wear comfy and sporty, if it is colder to put a jacket on. There is no perfect lesson, however, it would be best to stay silent for the first ten minutes. After the breathing exercises comes the opening mantra. If there is little time, I usually ask my guests if they have any preferences, if they prefer to practice the sun salutation before doing some asana or to go directly to stretching- relaxing exercises. I am very flexible and I can easily adapt, maybe as a consequence of practicing yoga. Remember: a mind which can expand will be more creative, loving, calm and productive.

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