Un enfoque holístico para una vida sana
The Spanish statement written above illustrates, “a holistic approach to a healthy life”. This affirmation defines yoga. Yoga is a unified approach to self-development that encompasses physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health and well-being. It transpires as mind and body wholeness. That quote was taken from the website of Yoga Dinamico Mandiram, a yoga studio located in Barcelona.
During spring break, my husband and I had the opportunity to be tourists in Barcelona. Barcelona, the capital of the Spanish region of Catalonia is a tourism heaven. Annually, millions of visitors experience traditional architecture, museums, cathedrals, theaters, medieval history, boutiques, cafés, narrow cobblestone streets and nonstop nightlife. To make the most of our six-day visit, we walked everywhere and hardly slept. From our hotel’s location in Port Olympia through the Parc de la Ciutadella (park) to Placa de Sant Jaume (the historic political heart of the city), through Placa del Rei (the medieval square) and ending each day in Barri Gotic (the oldest part of the city), where we shopped, ate tapas and viewed exquisite art work. As we took in all the historic sites it was very obvious that Spanish/Catalan was the foremost spoken language. Our understanding and ability to speak Spanish was very limited, Hola (hello) was the only word we could communicate effectively. Fortunately for us, English was spoken at our hotel.
After three full days of non-stop touring, my hip muscles were sore, our legs and feet had reached their limit of walking 8 miles per day and we just needed a brief relaxation period to help us get back onto the cobblestone. My husband chose the tub for his feet, and I departed to the concierge to investigate if a yoga studio existed nearby. As a therapeutic yoga specialist, I knew that a yoga class would bring me back to holistic health. Holistic health upholds that all aspects of our physical, social, mental, emotional and spiritual needs should daily be connected into a whole. We had accomplished the mental, social, emotional and spiritual aspects, but the physical had to be implemented.
Carlos, a friendly and most accommodating concierge, searched the internet and found a yoga studio. Carlos called and a woman, Gordana, answered. She spoke Spanish and ENGLISH! I conversed with her and discovered a Hatha Yoga class was beginning at 14:30. (2:30 pm) I had an hour and a half to get there. I couldn’t believe it, I was so excited. It was only 5 miles from our hotel so I knew we could arrive on time. I found my husband (still in the tub) and suggested that we go find the the yoga studio. His initial reaction to another walk was ”absolutely not”, but he thought for a moment and then concluded that if he walked five more miles to drop me off he could then sit down at an outside café, drink a glass of vino, read a magazine and give his feet another hour of freedom. I knew that soon enough we would both have mind AND body well-being.
The Yoga Dinamico Mandiram was located at an intersection near the end of the Las Ramblas area. Las Ramblas is a pedestrian paradise. Consisting of a promenade where strollers rule the neighborhood. As we quickly walked we passed street entertainers, cafés, booths selling inexpensive souvenirs and tourists sitting on benches taking in the crowds of people. We arrived at the site and could not figure out which entrance button to push. Spanish suddenly stressed my body. The class was beginning in 15 minutes. Luckily, next to the building entrance, we found a storekeeper that spoke a little English. She called the studio and like magic we entered. Six flights up in a narrow stairwell a door appeared with the studios’ name. Gordana, the co-founder welcomed us. The studio was beautiful. Hardwood floors, meaningful pictures, and numerous books placed on shelves. A very comfortable environment. My husband took one picture, smiled, and left.
As I entered the yoga room, Gordana gave me a mat. There were three women seated with legs crossed and hands in a Mudra position. I quickly rolled the mat open and parked myself near the top of the mat. Gordana softly began speaking in Spanish. I listened and envisioned that she was telling us to close our eyes, clear your mind for the next hour and breathe. She continued by offering us poses (asana) in Spanish and Sanskrit. Thank g-d for my understanding of Sanskrit. I chose a drishti, (spot, vision for my eyes) on the woman directly in front of me. Because of the Spanish, I was nervous. During the first ten minutes, my head was not clear. I needed to breathe, forget about the drishti, and follow the movements. Gordana’s calm, soothing voice provided a slow paced, gentle flow that created tranquility. She walked around the room and lightly aligned our bodies. At the end of class during our Savasana, she spoke again. Ironically, her dialogue didn’t matter. I understood because I was on the mat. That’s all that matters. My body and mind were rejuvenated. I was grateful to find a studio that promoted holistic health. Gordana’s wisdom defined yoga. As we stretched and sat to conclude our practice, I silently listened to Gordana’s Spanish,
“May the good light in you, see the good light in others”. Namaste.
One more comment…my husband was also re-energized and our sightseeing through Barcelona joyfully continued.
- Therapeutic Yoga for Cancer Survivors – personal insights
- Yoga Nidra for Insomnia (Baba Ramdev’s Video, Yoga Poses and Clinical Trials)
- Interview with Therapeutic Yoga Instructor, Char Grossman [Video]
- Scientific Evidence for the Benefits of Yoga
- 40 Ways Yoga Heals Your Body (Clinical Explanations of Yoga’s Health Benefits)