Yoga in the Boardroom at Mama Youth Project
Here’s me having fantastic fun giving my Yoga in the Boardroom workshop to the latest Mama Youth Project Trainees. Based at the Sky TV studios and offices in Isleworth, I had 15 enthusiastic trainees for the class. I think only one had done yoga before but they all threw themselves into it with great aplomb!
I love to meet young people who are as passionate about the media industry as I was 25 years ago when I started (and still am!). So, to be able to teach them yoga tricks to help with stress, confidence and the personal impact was amazing.
Mama Youth trains young people from under-represented backgrounds who dream of being in the media industry. Young people between 18-25 get trained up with the kind of TV skills and experience they need to secure long-term employment.
On their What’s UP TV Training programme, students get trained in production management, TV research, camera operating, sound recording or editing on an actual series. It’s invaluable, hands-on experience that they can use when they leave and talk about in interviews.
So far almost 500 young people have completed training at Mama Youth since it began in 2007. And over 80% find jobs in media after training.
I met the trainees towards the end of their 14 weeks of training when they were all about to set off on careers in the TV industry with placements at BBC starting next week. To send them on their way, I taught them how to use breath to feel powerfully calm, how to strike powerful postures for confidence and impact and exercises to de-stress and relax physically and mentally.
Here we are doing Tree pose which is a famous balance in yoga. It’s a great one to do because you don’t need a lot of space, it calms you down and helps you focus inwardly rather on the hustle-bustle of what’s going on around you. You have to concentrate to be able to do it too so just doing it becomes like a mini-meditation.
To do it:
Place your weight on one foot. Make sure you are really grounded on that foot and using all four corners of the foot for balance.
Pick up the other leg and bend the knee.
Place the foot from the bent knee either against your ankle (heel above the ankle, ball of the foot on the ground) OR flat against the calf OR, if your balance is good, on your thigh ABOVE the knee joint. Avoid putting your foot on your knee joint.
Suck in your belly and core for strength (this really helps balance)
Focus your eyes on a spot in front of you that isn’t moving OR on the tip of your nose.
Inhale and raise your arms overhead (these are the branches of the tree) and put your thumbs and first fingers together and hold.
If you’d like your ‘branches’ to sway, sway your arms from side to side.
Don’t worry if you wobble, this is really you exercising your stabilising muscles and, don’t forget, all trees move in the wind!
When you are ready, release the pose and repeat on the other side.
Remember to breathe throughout!!!
Check out the amazing work Mama Youth Project does at MamaYouth.org.uk
Thank you Cristina Ciobanu Director of Operations, MamaYouth for inviting me and see you again next time!