Sitting on chairs IS good for you, according to yoga teacher Madeline Diaz Meiners.
The 38-year-old runs her own Mind and Body Yoga business, teaching a variety of forms, including mother and baby sessions, hot yoga and restorative at her studios in Penwortham and Adlington.
She also runs chair yoga lessons every Friday at Park Road Unitarian Chapel Hall, in Chorley, and she is now hoping to extend her reach by adding another class.
She says: “You get just as much, if not more benefit in a chair than you do on a mat.
“This form gets deep into your back and hips.
“It is good for people with hip replacements or dodgy knees as you have the support of the chair.
“It is also making yoga accessible for people with disabilities or for older people.
“But it is for people of any age or ability. I teach an 89-year-old who can bend and touch his toes and there are younger clients.
“Yoga in a chair is also great for people with ME, MS or fibromyalgia.
“It can help people with anxiety or depression.
“A lot of people are full time carers and they come here for respite as they are doing something for themselves.
“The sessions provide a great social arena as a lot of clients meet up for dinner afterwards.
“It is like a little community as people really care for each other.
“I currently teach one yoga in a chair class a week but I want to start another one. I have lost a couple of clients who can no longer make the current time and so I want to branch out to get more people interested to start a second session.”
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Madeline, a mother-of-two, has been running Mind and Body Yoga for five years after becoming interested in the form following her time in Argentina.
She adds: “I lived in Argentina when I was 25.
“My then husband was a musician and worked with a band in Africa.
“As a result, I was involved in a cultural project with the Argentinian government to bring artists from Africa to Argentina.
“I was running a dance and percussion school in Buenos Aires.
“Whilst there I made sure I had one hour a week to myself and I chose to practice yoga.
“It did me so much good and it was my refuge from all the stress of everyday life.
“I suffered with mental health in the past and practicing yoga completely stopped all that.
“I came off my medication and I didn’t have the same anxiety and stress.
“Having developed my skills through personal practice, and learning first-hand the benefits of yoga physically, spiritually and mentally, I discovered this was my true vocation.
“I moved back to the UK when I was 30 to study The Mandala Yoga Ashram in Wales for four years.
“I trained as a satyananda yoga teacher, which is a very gentle, therapeautic-based yoga, working on breathing and relaxation.
“This includes asana (poses), pranayama (breathing), meditation, and yoga Nidra. I teach a wide range of styles, plus mother and baby and pregnancy yoga and even yoga in chairs.
“I came back to Chorley and set up some classes at church halls. This was how chair yoga started in 2015. I opened my first studio, Mind and Body, in Adlington and them I opened Trybe Hot Yoga, in Penwortham.
“Before I lived in Argentina, I lived in Ibiza, selling clothes from Africa. I really liked the place and so I spend four or five months there running retreats. I plan to move over there by 2020.
“I am also opening a studio in Bolton in February, recruiting more staff.”
Chair yoga is £6 a session at Park Road Unitarian Chapel Hall, Chorley, on Fridays 12.30pm until 1.30pm.
For more information on other sessions at Mind and Body Yoga visit www.mindandbodyyoganw.co.uk/timetable/ and www.trybepreston.co.uk/