Hatha Heather

My new best friend: Palo Santo

Palo Santo (Spanish translation, Holy Wood) sales have gone through the roof thanks to my crush on this ceremonial Peruvian / Ecuadorian bark….
…and if you’ve been to one of my classes you’ll recognise the smell.

One of the FTC’s awesome teachers, Nicki Le Masurier, first introduced it to me in a taster class and I fell in love. The curious pine, mint & lemon rich scents hit you like a brick wall, but not only is it great an clearing away less pleasant smells and mosquitos, it also works to cleanse and ground the energies of a room – the perfect opening / closing to a yoga class.


Here’s where I bought my first bundle – www.sacredwoodessence.com

Back to basics, Hatha Heather, Yoga 101

Why Meditate? A topic for newbies


What is Meditation anyway?
A term in sanskrit ‘yoga chitta vritti nirodha’ (found in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras) distills it for me.
Yoga = to yoke, to join, to unite
Chitta = consciousness
Vritti = fluctuations
Nirodha = quietening of

Thanks Pat! Ta daaah – meditation is quieting the fluctuations of the mind and unifying with ones-self.

Why Meditate?
Imagine it as brain training, a practical exercise firstly. An App for the brain in this busy world. Training our ‘monkey-mind’ to sit quietly without thought or judgement, which is a lot trickier than expected. Relatable to training muscles in bodies, which overtime strengthens and tones giving tangible results. By training the mind in this way (regularly sitting in silence) we become more focused, less distracted, more content and stable, less anxious & worried, more accepting, less judgmental – overall… happier.

Secondly, but most importantly, meditation has a spiritual purpose, without religion or dogma, which can be felt from experiencing the practice. It connects us with our true selves, aka the inner divinity, spirit, soul, true essence, Brahman, universal consciousness, the Atman. The ultimate goal of mediation is to turn the attention inwards instead of outward, to become one-pointed in focus, allowing us to become united with our inner peace and infinite wisdom (however it is termed).

If new to this concept, it may be a lot to take in without touching on philosophical debates about the existence of life… a never ending debate for humankind. In short, we have a soul which is infinite, permanent and un-changing and the final goal is to reconnect with it, turning away from the outside world of sense desires, impermanence and change.

How can we fit Meditation into our lives?
We can become rushed and busy in the world, that most of the time we neglect to need to give space and time to ourselves, purely. To give ourselves a good start we need to get rid of the words that lead to excuses, “I’m too busy… I can’t find the time”. It is not a case of finding the time, but more a case of creating & making time. Here’s the start of the internal dialogue to lead us to success.

To meditate for as little as 30 minutes a day (or less) is the minimum of what we need to find a frequent practice. This will enable us to be happier, calmer and more content, allowing the inner peace and wisdom to radiate outward, once stepping out of mediation.

How to meditate?

This will be the next topic. There are many techniques to choose from whether you aline closer with Buddhist, Yoga, Chi Gong or other Eastern Philosophies. I would suggest trying a few to find the one that resonates the most.

My next entry will be for the benefit of people wanting to firstly get acquainted with the practice.

If you’d like to practice with me in real time, I offer free 1/2 an hour guided mediations with all donations going to charity every Monday evening from 6.10pm at For The Core, new yoga studio in Hoxton, London. Book your seat here.

Hatha Heather

Where you’ll find me…

…in a brand new Yoga Shala in Hoxton. The heart of Hackney’s hipster district, London.

Bringing an enthusiastic class to the FTC studio, with a eclectic music mix to each session to set a suitably chilled atmosphere.

Be prepared to jump into the session with vibrant Sun Salutations followed by powerful balances, dynamic twists and elasticated stretches leaving you relaxed and focused. Suitable for all levels and abilities. 

Outside of class I will be around to welcome guests to the FTC, running Meditation on Monday, managing the studio, as well as helping to book you into our ever developing range of classes. 

Want to teach, guest or hold an event then just drop me a line +44 (0)7399 625 982 or email info@forthecore.co.uk

www.forthecore.co.uk / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter

Back to basics, Hatha Heather

Back to basics… Usha Paan (Drink water)

Usha Paana an ancient Indian water therapy and Ayurvedic treatment. Usha means rising of the sun and Paana is to take something liquid.

Every morning, first thing, simply drink 3-4 glasses of water before breakfast and before even brushing your teeth.

Those who have tried it, know it works! So here is a friendly reminder to keep it up or why you should give it a try.

Because it makes you feel electric and the long term effects are endless…

Not only hydrating you, it helps to rid your mouth of the Alkaline build up it’s accumulated during the night (aka morning breath) and kick starts your metabolism by cleaning through your digestive tract. It’s your kidneys best friend. Don’t wait till you have a hang-over to do it, try it everyday.

If you’re one who knows you do not drink enough water, then set yourself up – it’s all about preparation. Every night take a bottle of water to bed. Simply wake up and drink it! Easy right?

The results are instant…

Clearer skin, higher energy levels, it kick starts your metabolism to maintain a healthy body weight and boosts your immune system.

***Pimp your water***

Add lemon, mint or cucumber for extra flavour and make sure it’s drank at room temperature or, even better, lukewarm 😉


Hatha Heather, Music

Music: Trip Hoppy Yoga

Want something different to vibe into your next yoga session?

Testing out a new playlist for a funky, yet relaxing mix of trip hop and mellow electronic  vibes for a medium tempo asana routine, great for dynamic flow or nice deep stretches.

An eclectic mix of genres, it was important for this playlist to have a fluid tempo and atmosphere that doesn’t jump awkwardly making you reach for the volume dial or skip button when in class.

2 hours long and perfect put on shuffle or start to finish.

Have a listen 😀

Hatha Heather

Why Hatha Yoga?

What is Hatha Yoga in a nut shell?
Yoga of the body… healthy body = healthy mind.
Hatha is a general term for most yoga styles we see today. Specifically, it is the original style of Yoga as we know it in westernised society – it harmonises the body & mind through Asanas (yoga poses) and Pranayama (breathing techniques) in preparation for the deeper spiritual practice of Meditation.

Do you have to be spiritual to enjoy Hatha?
No. The best thing about Yoga is that you can be on whatever spiritual path you choose (if any). It’s inclusive and non-discriminatory by its innate nature. Every one can feel the benefits of this practice whether young or old, athletic or rounded. Once finished with a Hatha class you will feel rejuvenated, energised, optimistic, refreshed and all those cuddly adjective words 🙂


Hatha Heather

The journey begins…

How I came into Yoga
Having attended every type of yoga class in London and enjoying the benefits, like many, the reason I attended was purely to focus on my physicality. Wanting to be more bendy, to have the bikini bod, to fit into that ever-shrinking pair of skinny jeans…
Like most of my efforts in exercise for these reasons, every taster class was attended and each was short lived. A fad until I could try the next trendy exercise plan.
Something was missing.

On a journey of a life time starting in Sri Lanka I started reading into Eastern mystic philosophies. Here is where the journey started to get interesting. From reading the Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, years prior, the seed of infinite consciousness was already planted and once immersed in travel, the shackles of work and London life were abolished. Here, I could freely make efforts to further my knowledge through real experience.

At the end of my adventure I went to India, a country that was calling me. I studied a 200hr certified Hatha Yoga course in Goa at Shiva Shakti yoga school, in the river-side jungle, a short stroll from the beach. Here I could quench my thirst for spirituality and philosophy teamed with a devotion to keeping my physical self at its best. Only once all of these elements were aligned could I find a home for Yoga within.