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'Yoga is the way to well-being'.

MANEESH BAKSHI

DOHA A HEALTHY mind in a healthy body, or a healthy body due to a healthy mind? Australian-born Valerie Jeremijenko says it matters little, for with yoga you are taking care of both. She is the founder, owner and director of Yama Yoga Studios in Doha and the Yama Yoga Director of teacher training programmes.

She has been practising and teaching yoga since 1991 and opened Yama Yoga studios in November 2009. Valerie is also a writer who has authored the book, 'How we live our Yoga', which was released by Beacon Press in 2001. In October 2013, Valerie and her husband opened their Yama Yoga retreat centre in Bulgaria.

Talking to Qatar Tribune in her studio, Jeremijenko described how yoga was re-invented by the West, where it has been transformed into a physical exercise programme believed to have holistic benefits.

"The hippie movement of the 60s ignited interest in Eastern values, and suddenly, that became the vogue in the West. Many members of cult rock bands such as The Beatles took refuge in the ashrams of Indian gurus. There was a great transfusion of cultures that took place during this time, A[yen] Jeremijenko explained.

Yoga which is an ancient Indian philosophical school attached with spirituality was reinvented in the West at the time when people were interested in a more physical kind of lifestyle. "The yoga that we seen now, is modern postural yoga, which deals with health and well-being, A[yen] she added.

"Penni Kean who teaches yoga at Yam Studio while sharing her experiences said, "At times, students feel they are not flexible enough to learn yoga but invariably it is not the question of difficulty but that of making up of mind to give it a try. A[yen] There are introductory courses for the first timers. "Yoga has been very successful with people who wish to lose weight and there have been students who have lost 30 to 40 pounds after taking up the course, A[yen] said Kean. Regular yoga has improved health of people suffering from medical conditions like hypertension.

Yama Yoga offers over 70 classes a week and employs about 40 trainers at two different locations. There are programmes in yoga, dance and Pilates that are offered to beginners as well as to advanced students. In addition, pre and post-natal yoga and yoga for children is also promoted.

Yam Yoga Studio is registered with Yoga Alliance, an international yoga licensing association and it meets all international standards for yoga teachers training facility. So far it has produced 150 trained yoga instructors.

With growing health awareness and the undisputed benefits of yoga, it will only increase in popularity, as more and more people look for the wellbeing of body and mind.

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Publication:Qatar Tribune (Doha, Qatar)
Geographic Code:7QATA
Date:Mar 13, 2014
Words:475
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