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Yoga Wellness with Coka from The Yoga Tribe and Chloe Steens

what does natural wellness mean to you?

Part one of our Yoga Wellness feature.

Natural wellness - what does it mean to you? Is it something you prioritise every day?

For us, natural wellness is a whole body, whole mind, whole life experience, and it’s something that is intrinsically part of our lives each day.

It’s a belief system… embracing imperfection, breathing through the stressful times, making sure that we’re conscious of what we put into our bodies through all our senses, but also ensuring there is an equilibrium by allowing a few things that are a little less virtuous...

Sheryl’s favourite treat is a glass of Deutz, and Paul adores his Cuban cigars. Its about balance..!

We’ve caught up with four beautiful people who practise yoga as part of their everyday wellness rituals – each person seeing it from a different perspective and embracing it in various ways, but all believing in its healing and balancing benefits.

This is the first of two blogs that focus on these people and how Yoga and mindfulness fit with their lifestyles.

In this blog, part one of our Yoga for wellness feature, we meet Chloe Steens - wife of Ben Steens - the son of Steens Honey owners Paul and Sheryl. Chloe is a natural midwife and mum of three beautiful children.

And Coka, who is the owner of The Yoga Tribe – a New Zealand based company whose core is centred around the beliefs and practises of yoga as a way of life.

Keep reading to see how these two wonderful people celebrate mindfulness and yoga as part of their daily life, and how they ensure their belief in natural wellness extends beyond physical practises to ensure they are living a life that exudes health, wellness.. and balance.

In our second blog, we introduce Hannah, owner of HANR Yoga, and Matte - a professional dancer.

 

COKA KLUG

Owner of @yogatribeofficial  |  www.yogatribeofficial.com

With a love and passion for Yoga that spans over 20 years and being a graphic designer, the practice of Yoga had me envisioning my mat as a blank canvas to look at every day of my practice for years. I always saw it as an opportunity to inspire myself & others through art. Therefore YogaTribe®️’s original designed yoga mat was born differently... instead of looking for a good design to sell and make money from it, I closed my eyes and went into a deep state of meditation, and asked myself what would add to my experience and what could I receive from this canvas if it could exist as a silent communication between us.

The designs came to me within 5 minutes, it was clear and it felt right. It was the energy within the images and the peace that I could feel in my heart, the one I could visualize practicing on is the one I felt the need to share with others, to connect them to their practice too. I knew then if it makes me feel this way, there will be a Tribe out there who can resonate with a similar frequency. This is why we love to say our products have SOUL. Behind each carefully designed and selected product there is an intention that goes beyond functionality.

I am a dreamer, an artist, the architecture of my own reality... a characteristic that not always plays in our favour when doing business, but I believe in miracles and the power of our minds to create. I see no obstacles, only an invitation to play, to end up laughing to what once might have brought tears, to expand & to enjoy every moment of this gift called life. REMEMBERING where we came from and where we are going, the answer should always be LOVE.

Gratitude is the gift that allows me to keep going and I believe it's the simplest and most powerful tool of happiness. I want people to remember too, that this life is a constant "invitation to participate", therefore we must take ownership of our actions and creations, it's challenging but so rewarding, all is asked from you it to SIMPLY DO YOUR BEST, the rest is giving. Come play with us, connect, and be part of our tribe.

WHAT DOES THE PRACTISE OF YOGA MEAN TO YOU?

The practise of yoga is an “innersize” instead of an exercise, it’s a lifestyle. A devotion to honour your body and mind as a vessel of your soul.

 

HOW DOES YOGA FIT INTO YOUR DAILY WELLNESS ROUTINE?

It's in everything I do.

 

HOW DID YOU LEARN THE YOGA TECHNIQUES YOU PRACTISE?

I got introduced to yoga when I was 18 with a strong practise of ashtanga yoga. It wasn’t until 15 years later that I learned that yoga was way more than a physical practise. That is when I trained to become a yoga teacher.

 

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE YOGA POSE AND WHY?

Tadasana – Mountain pose. It’s not only my favourite to practise but also to teach as it’s a simple pose where you get to feel the blessing of being able to stand tall, standing your ground, with nothing being asked of you. You can fully let go and be present in your presence, allowing the structure of your skeleton to hold you firm.

 

WHAT ELSE DO YOU DO IN YOUR DAILY LIFE TO ENSURE YOU STAY HEALTHY AND BALANCED?

I drink a warm lemon drink every morning to alkalise my body, I stop as often as I need to consciously breathe and be grateful for whatever is in front of me and I stop often to just listen to my body, my heart to see what is required to see if I need food, rest, to move to dance….

 

DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR YOGA BEGINNERS WHO ARE WANTING TO START ADDING IT TO THEIR WELLNESS ROUTINE?

Dedicate 5 minutes of your day to move consciously, whatever your body is asking you to do. Be your own guru and if you do any asana/posture don’t worry about accomplishment, focus on the feeling of the posture not the accomplishment of it.

 

WHAT DO YOU DO BEFORE OR AFTER YOUR YOGA SESSION TO ENSURE YOU FEEL COMFORTABLE AND MAINTAIN THE BENEFITS THROUGHOUT THE DAY?

Drink water.

 

IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE YOU WOULD LIKE TO ADD?

My biggest desire is that people understand that yoga is beyond Asanas.

 

CHLOE STEENS

Midwife, mum of three, and wife of Ben Steens | @chloesteens

Hey, I’m Chloe. I am the wife to my soul mate, and childhood lover Ben Steens, we’ve been together since I was 13, married at 21 and we both just celebrated turning 30! 

We have 3 wonderful, wild spirited children all birthed drug free in the comfort of our own home. 

We are so very blessed to be living our dream life, nestled at the top of the Papamoa hills, surrounded by mother earth and all her glory. 

I am passionate about holistic health, plant based and alternative medicine. 

I love learning more about the human mind, and the mind body connection and the interconnection of all things.

I am also a midwife of 9 years, I am on call majority of my life which can be overwhelming at times. I am passionate about Homebirth, and love working with women and their families, guiding and supporting them to have the most empowering birth experiences possible. 

WHAT DOES THE PRACTISE OF YOGA MEAN TO YOU?

Yoga for me is the practice of coming into embodiment through movement, breath and attention.

Yoga helps me get out of my head and into my body. It’s harder for the mind to be busy thinking when your body is busy focusing on breathing moving and feeling.

Yoga in its original intentional way was always an embodied practice, one that is directly experienced as a journey towards experiencing a greater sense of awareness and expanded consciousness.   

Yoga helps me feel more relaxed, grounded and present, it brings me back into alignment, I always feel more centred and balanced after yoga.

 

HOW DOES YOGA FIT INTO YOUR DAILY WELLNESS ROUTINE?

I make time for yoga 2-3 times a week, yoga definitely isn’t as relaxing with 3 loud busy kids around, so when I do have childfree quiet time, I prioritize yoga over washing and housework. Those things can always wait. 

There isn’t always going to be the perfect time for an hour of yoga, but I can always incorporate it into my everyday life , even if I’m just waiting for something to cook or if I have a few minutes spare here and there, I make a conscious effort to do some simple stretching and bring an increased awareness to my breath, even if it’s just 5 or 10 minutes, it almost instantly makes me feel better, and sure beats mindless time spent sitting scrolling through social media etc. 

 

HOW DID YOU LEARN THE YOGA TECHNIQUES YOU PRACTISE?

I’ve dabbled in yoga off and on since I was about 10yrs old when my mum would take me along to local classes. I have learned from a handful of instructors, books and yogi friends and family members over the years. 

 

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE YOGA POSE AND WHY?

I would have to say Cat-Cow pose is my fav, It is a gentle flow between two poses that warms the body up and brings flexibility to the spine. It stretches the back and the neck, and softly stimulates and strengthens the abdominal muscles and organs. It is also great at opening the chest, encouraging the breath to become slow and deep.

 
The spinal movement of the two poses stimulates the kidneys and adrenal glands, and also helps in strengthening pelvic floor muscles. I find Cat-Cow pose amazing for relieving stress and calming the mind.

 

WHAT ELSE DO YOU DO IN YOUR DAILY LIFE TO ENSURE YOU STAY HEALTHY AND BALANCED?

  • Spend time barefoot in nature daily.
  • Sun gaze, Moon gaze, Star gaze.
  • Meditate.
  • Practice gratitude daily.
  • Journal.
  • Eat Whole Foods and avoid processed foods, artificial colours, flavours and preservatives.
  • Eat a balanced diet.

DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR YOGA BEGINNERS WHO ARE WANTING TO START ADDING IT TO THEIR WELLNESS ROUTINE?

Yes, do it, just make a start, yoga is literally for everyone, all ages, all sizes, all flexibility levels. You will never regret incorporating yoga into your life. Even the smallest step in the direction of the body brings us closer to joy, peace and healing.

WHAT DO YOU DO BEFORE OR AFTER YOUR YOGA SESSION TO ENSURE YOU FEEL COMFORTABLE AND MAINTAIN THE BENEFITS THROUGHOUT THE DAY?

I like to tidy my stretching space before I start, I always light an incense and play music .
At the end of a yoga session I like to spend 10 minutes in a meditation pose.

 

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