Om Yoga Show 2013

Today has been the busiest day I have had in quite a while, as Friday the 25th of October marked the opening of the largest Yoga event in Europe, the Om Yoga Show 2013. Yes, I popped my yoga show cherry! I don't think I have mentioned yet that I am in training to be a yoga teacher myself, so you can see why it was about time I hurried my derriere down there.

After ensuring that my puppy was seen to and picked up for a day of play, as well as several run throughs of my lightning process for energy, I set off for Kensington Olympia Exhibition Centre. To give an idea of how big a deal this show is in the yoga world, the centre's car parks were all full despite me getting there an hour before the place opening, the same can be said for all the local meter bays. Not the start I was hoping for, but always with a plan B at hand, it was off to Westfield to park and then train it over (I knew I could make this work for me somehow later, nudge nudge wink wink)

Luckily for little ol' me I got to waltz in upon arrival as I had won my ticket from the sweet Simi Valecha. She was one of this years exhibitors with her brand Chakra Art.

Simi is a graphic designer and henna artist. These skills inspired the beautiful illustrations on her bespoke products, such as greetings cards, notebooks and wall art. It is her first show too so if you are planning on going this weekend be sure to pop by her stall and say hi.

Simi was not alone in her intricate henna designs. There were two ladies doing body work.

And how gorgeous are these candles...I don't think I could ever burn them!

Hanging upside down seemed to be a bit of a trend!

Swing Fitness had a stall with silk cradles and pulleys that helped you carry out inversions, minus the pressure on your neck and head.

This young lady was having a right giggle of a time in a door frame contraption by Yoga Monkeys. It also wrapped around the waist so that you could dangle upside might be nice to do it as something different in the classroom but as far as daily home practice, I'm not sure it would be for I alone in this one?

The organised workshops made for a much more usual view. This gentleman was taking his class through a Japa (a repetitive and meditative chant) when I arrived and the sound was just magical, as was how infrequently he needed to inhale!

There were 2 workshops (up on the balcony), 6 open classes, such as the ones in my pictures, that every hour showcased different teachers and styles of yoga as well as a lecture area and a children's area. Whichever you choose, one posture you can expect to see a lot of at any yoga show is downward dog; the sanskrit is adho mukha svanasana to those in the know. This class used it as the core asana, given that it is considered a resting pose, so all movements started with it and came back to it.

Everywhere you turn there are people displaying their flexibility through asana work, in a hope to get you near and tell you about their retreats, classes, programs or clothing etc.

Despite being called The Yoga Show, it isn't purely 'yoga class' focused. There were also many brands there that fell into the all-round health and fitness field. I particularly liked these little boxes by Saviour.

As a customer, you just choose the box size, then the frequency of the delivery and wait for Mondays to come around! The Nutritionist was a lovely lady who told me she approves that everything in the box meets the 'Saviour Snack Standard' ie no hydrogenated fats, artificial colours, preservatives etc. I know what you are thinking...isn't this what Graze does? I thought this at first too but then I looked at the sample menu card. Saviour uses individual brands like bounce, kallo or clearspring. Have you ever been in the 'healthy' isle of the supermarket, wondering what actually is good for you? Well this box can do the selecting for you and help you see through the mist of bad products with good advertising to what is actually going to help you on your healthy quest. The company only started out in February so they are still shaping to peoples requirements and are happy to talk about peoples needs and expectations from their product. I can assure you they seemed like a truly super bunch on the stall.

If you like your health goods then there is a veritable feast to enjoy; everything from raw chocolate to spirinula powder concoctions. I, however, was in need of refreshment.

A favourite brand of mine, Yogi Tea, have a super stall near the entrance. Their Stomach Ease tea always works for me but I hadn't yet ventured into their whole range. Here you can sample all the flavours but I highly recommend their chilled cinnamon tea with apple juice, oh my was it tasty!

Moving on from food and drink to shinier things. I have always adored the brand Satya from afar. There is a shop in London but as a country bumpkin I have been an internet browser and hoped that the Yoga Show might mean that I could pick something up with a bit of a discount.

The jewellery is so beautiful. Alas, cheap, it is not. I do understand that quality comes at a price but I must admit it was the ladies working the stall that deterred me more than the sterling. After being told that samples were on the left and therefore half price I was pretty much left whilst they discussed handbags and marathons. I tried asking exactly what prices were, as most didn't have price tags (a huge bugbear of mine), and what stones were what, but either it was too loud or they were too busy so I skulked off slightly saddened that yet again these pretty trinkets alluded me. However all was not lost and joy came in the form of Chakra Ma.

The selection of chakra inspired pieces was beautiful and prices were perfect for a little gift to a friend or something for yourself. That and the ladies were super duper friendly! Everything is 925 Sterling Silver or Gold Vermeil (925 coated in 22k gold). I couldn't make a final decision on a pair of earring so I thought I would walk and consider it. It is my one regret that I didn't make it back before I had to leave and I pray they are there again next year so I can rectify my mistake of not going with my first choice.

A walk around the Mind, Body and Soul section showed me that there really isn't anything you can't do at this place.

A nice massage where you pay what you feel is right at the end.

A 'spiritual haircut'...I wonder how exactly he differs from my hairdresser?

You could also indulge in having a psychic tell you your future, have your aura photographed, palms read or buy some healing herbs. Again, this isn't what I would choose to go for myself but I did enjoy a look around.

Back downstairs, in the main exhibit, I was tempted by some pretty vests and a subscription to the Om Magazine. Each issue is priced at £3.95 but I got a year for £24.95, plus the last two issues for £1 each, PLUS a bag of goodies. I will show my haul at the end. For now it was off to dinner with my little brother and back to Westfield (see, I knew I could make parking there work for me, you didn't think I was just going to go shopping some more did ya?)

I sat down outside with some reading material, spicy nachos and a cola - AKA the perfect Friday treat.

Finally the boy arrived and we moved inside to feast. The interior of Bills really is lovely and the back of the restaurant was all booths and chandeliers.

We had some pitta and crudites with dips (humous and tzatziki) to start. I thought it was brill but typical bloke comment was that there needed to be more bread.

C then chose the burger with bacon and cheese whilst I opted for one of the specials, tortellini with buttered spinach...well it was World Pasta Day (Yes, I will use any excuse)

By this point I may have taken quite a few piccies and my brother was like 'seriously Anni, let me tuck in. I'm hungry. Put the camera down and back away slowly'. So apologies that this is the only one of our dinner.

Nicely full it was time to carry out the elder sibling duties and make sure everyone got home safe. After dropping C off at his pad I made my way back, eagerly awaiting the unpacking of the goods.

These 3 vests came from Azul Yoga & Pilates retreat, where the lovely lady gave me a deal of £45 for the lot. I love the colours and they are so cosy that I am wearing one as I type.

This grey beauty was from Be Love. They also had the softest looking cropped sweatshirts and other vest prints. It was £20.

Lastly my subscription goodie bag.

All of the above came in my £26.95 package. In addition to this we were able to choose 2 books from a lot of 4. Now as one was on smoking and another on detecting and increasing some spiritual aspect of my being that I had never heard of, I knew right away which 2 were for me. I also like a bit of Christian Jessen so it's all good.

Having been to several fashion and food oriented events around London and S/E in the past, I thought I knew what to expect, but the Olympia has never seemed larger or louder. It was a little saddening that it was such a commercial affair. Most things there were quite simply out of any price range I could consider. I just did not expect quite so many stalls with malas and leggings for over £100! (and may I just say at that price I demand that they not be see through, something I was promised but a quick try showed me it was not the case). If you asked 10 people their experience, I'm sure you would get 10 very different answers, but I cannot be the only one who thought it would be a little more...I want to say, about the passion. It may not be the best word for it. At the foodie festivals I have been to there just seems to be so much passion, with everyone wanting to share their experience with you (without a whopping great price tag), you can't help to be sucked in. Maybe it is due to a recession, or maybe I didn't plan my route around the centre well enough to hit the better stalls. Either way, I felt it dampened my experience.

Next time, and there will be a next time, I will ensure I have signed up to some of the guided meditations in advance, as one or two looked superb.

The Om Yoga Show will be at the Olympia Centre for another two days, 26th & 27th October. If anyone has gone today, or plans on going this weekend, and finds something so good they just can't keep it to themselves then please let me know.

OYS 2014, I will be ready for you!


Post a Comment


Twitter Update

LoveOmLife. Powered by Blogger.

Meet The Author

Hi there, I'm Anni. Thank you for visiting my blog LoveOmLife. I hope you had a good read! Hit the Twitter tab up top, or the direct feed to the left, if you want to say hi back. Feel free to leave me a comment if you have some information you feel I should know. Just be sure you leave your blog details at the bottom of any contact so I can have a a good read too. xxx