Our teachers have some great life hacks and habits so we decided to quiz Joo Teoh for his. After you’ve read this article you will be inspired to take to your mat more often as well as find five minutes a day just for you.
Daily ingredient? Five minutes each day – what to do for you?
Meditate. Or do something which makes me hyper-aware of where I am and what is going on within me and around me. It may be sitting or standing or watching my tea brew or looking at one of my orchids or watching bamboos blowing in the breeze or watching the clouds roll by. Stay doing one thing and one thing alone for 5 minutes each day.
Favourite way to detox?
I have two favourite detoxing habits: every day, spend 3 minutes brushing your skin. Skin brushing is hugely therapeutic. It clears the dead cells from the largest human organ – the skin! – and it brings blood to the skin.
My other favourite detox is a juice fast. Twice a year. Once in spring and once in autumn. Only green vegetable juice and plenty of water for 5 days at least. If you’re feeling particularly motivated to detox, start with 5 days of only raw vegan diet, then 5 days of only green juice and water, then transition back over 5 days of the raw vegan diet.
How you fell in love with qigong:
Although Chinese medicine, Taichi and Qigong were always a part of my life, growing up in Malaysia, it wasn’t until I met Cameron Tukapua, a magnificent kiwi woman, on a retreat in Beijing did I realise the power of the practice. Studying with Matthew Cohen for the last ten years has only deepened my appreciation for the healing power of Qigong. Over the past five years, my own practice has skewed more towards Qigong and I blend Qigong into yoga classes as often as I can because they are such powerful complementary practices.
Top tip for creating a habit:
Don’t think. Just get on your mat every day. Even if you just get on the mat and lie there for 15 mins before you move, you’re on your mat! You’re already over the biggest hurdle to cultivating a regular practice!
What motivates you to move more?
My dogs. They are a joy and inspiration. I love how they shake off any stress or compression in three simple moves: shaking out their spine, an upward stretch, and a downward stretch. Now, if only humans were willing to relax into each stressful moment as easily, the world would be a much happier place.
If you weren’t a qigong teacher what would you like to be?
I never set out to be a Qigong or yoga teacher. Nor did I ever think I would become an acupuncturist. Life has led me here and I am so fulfilled with where the journey is taking me. There is so much to learn and share and practice and teach. I have no idea what else I would rather do!
In Tweet length why you practice?
Practice is magic. Who doesn’t want magic in their life every day?
Essential qigong accessory – and where did you get yours?
A sense of humour. I get mine from my Dogs.
Which guru would you like to sit on a mountain with?
My guru, Cameron Tukapua.
Places to practice – your top five places you have or would?
I’m happy to practice anywhere as long as I’m facing the sun!
Last book you read?
501 French Verbs – I’m still reading it! I am moving to France next year to start work on La Scellerie, the retreat centre my husband and I are opening in Normandy. So, I’m focusing on French verbs which are useful for motivating builders! So far, I am relying on the powers of the verbs venir (to come) and manger (to eat)…