Thursday 16 October 2014

Write Up: Prenatal Yoga TTC with Jo by Janice Tan

Prenatal Yoga TTC with Jo ~ 19-21 Sept 2014written by guest blogger, Janice

Nowadays pregnant ladies are more active in exercises compared to earlier days where they were adviced to rest, rest, and just rest. Doctors and specialists also agreed that appropriate exercises are good for women during their pregnancy and labour.

As a Yoga practitioner for many years and also a Yoga instructor, Yoga has became my choice of exercise during my pregnancy. I feel good after my every session of Prenatal Yoga class and so I decided to join the Prenatal TTC to learn more in depth in this specific topic, in order to help myself during the pregnancy journey and also my students' in future.

I chose to attend the TTC by Jo at Surya Yoga because this studio has been having Kids Yoga classes for some time, it gives me a very "motherly" feeling and its serene environment encourages  relaxation.

The intensive 20-hour class covers detailed topics on theory such as the benefits of Prenatal Yoga, safety of practice, what to-do and not to-do. We also had practical / hands-on practice which includes Yoga poses (asanas), breathing (pranayama), massage, adjustments on poses, partner yoga (to be practiced together with husbands or another pregnant friend), and teaching techniques.

There are also more than mentioned in the prepared teaching materials. Jo shared tips on handling challenges, on how to handle problems faced by students, and what to take note when introducing Prenatal Yoga in our teaching or into our studios.

I personally enjoyed the 2 discussion sessions, on the topic of "Changes in different trimesters" and "Teaching sequences for different trimesters and for students with specific health condition". As every pregnancy is different, every teacher has different styles and has different students, the discussion sessions allow us to exchange ideas, and learn from each others' experience.

During the asanas and breathing practice, mothers are exercising their bodies, breathing their breaths together with their babies in the tummy, the bonding is so strong and the feeling is so close and amazing.

And when I know more about Prenatal Yoga, I'm more physically and mentally enjoying the pregnancy process and more prepared for the labour. I'm also feeling that I'm sharing my knowledge and my gratitude with my baby.

I thank Jo for this wonderful training. Her teaching is powerful yet in a soothing and relaxing manner, she is so generous to share her knowledge and experience, in and out of textbox. I'm sure going to learn more from her in future.

Monday 15 September 2014

Heart to Heart Sessions: Pauline Lee

Surya Yoga and Pilates Studio has been conducting prenatal yoga classes for a few years now and we have gotten to meet many wonderful students throughout the years. Many of them, our very own students from the get go (pre-baby bump!). We believe in a little 'cycle of life' so to speak. It's wonderful to see prenatal yoga students come back to do postnatal yoga! Their little ones eventually end up joining us for kids yoga as well! Motherhood is not an easy journey, we hope to if not guide you, but at least provide a soft cushioning along the ride.

So, we had the opportunity to have a heart to heart session with one of our prenatal yoga students, Pauline Lee. We asked her to help us with our Prenatal Yoga Book and she agreed! She's such a good sport. This is how our little session went.

Meet our prenatal yoga student, Pauline Lee

How did you come by Yoga Pauline?

She oozed glowing confidence. She replied with a smile. She started yoga in 2010 after she came back from the Netherlands. She liked yoga because it had a calming effect and helped her find a sense of balance in life. It gave her, she said, awareness of 'living in the present moment' which is now her life philosophy and even business philosophy! Pauline informed us that she was an IT consultant for 8 years and that involved a lot of travelling. It was rewarding financially but she felt, what was important to her personally, at the end of the day was peace, calmness and happiness. As a consultant she uttered, the expectations placed on her were incredibly high. In a way, she was expected to know everything!

Pauline continued by saying that, even when she became pregnant, she continued practicing yoga because that 'balance' was important to her. It was a natural and logical transition to continue with yoga when pregnant. She was actually practicing yoga elsewhere, but left to do prenatal yoga with us.

A few snapshots for our upcoming Prenatal Yoga book

We asked (just for fun), why Surya Yoga and Pilates Studio?

Pauline knew this question was coming. She smiled rather motherly and said that she liked classes with us because our prenatal yoga classes were more focused. It was a smaller group and she liked our homey environment and ambiance. She loved how we were not commercialized and were genuine with our efforts. The added option to join Pilates Therapy classes were a bonus as well, she continued. 

This felt really good! We were really happy to hear this! We gave ourselves a pat on the back (discreetly in our minds) and continued with the little heart to heart session with Pauline.

Jo, conducting a prenatal yoga class

How has pregnancy been so far Pauline? 

She explained that prenatal yoga made her feel physically good. She mentioned that (even with labor 2 weeks away) she is still able to brisk walk and many have commented positively on her posture!

Pauline and Jo (director and founder of Surya Yoga & Pilates Studio and yes, head prenatal yoga instructor)

Brand spanking new classroom 4 for prenatal yoga classes

Surya Yoga & Pilates Studio has expanded! Classroom 4 is just a hop away

Our conversation continued 'off the record' but I think Pauline wouldn't mind us sharing? (Get back to us Pauline! *grin*). We were actually going to head out to get some lunch together. While Jo was getting Jolie (her 5 month little one) ready for a little 'jalan jalan cari makan' activity to Thyme Bakery (just a quick walk from Surya Yoga and Pilates Studio), I asked Pauline a little more about her current endeavors. She handed me her business card. I was expecting to see Pauline Lee - IT Consultant or IT Specialist but to my slight confusion, I saw Pauline Lee - Food Experience Captain!

It turns out, after coming back from the Netherlands, she decided to chase her real passion - food! She is a licensed food tour guide by the ministry of tourism! Her face lit up, she couldn't contain her smiles, she gushed on about her little company - Simply Enak. She hosts Petaling Street 'Heritage Food' walks for locals, expatriates and hungry tourists hoping to get a 'bite of Malaysia'. With passion, she explained that she grew up in Pudu with her mom making the Petaling Street food walk particularly more meaningful. 

Pauline Lee, looking very sweet and vibrant!

Jo finally materialized with Jolie, all bundled up comfortably in a 'baby sling carrier' she got from her confinement center - Bondavilla. We then made our little way, Jo with a smiling baby Jolie, Pauline hand in hand with her partner, and me - with my handy pen and notebook. All in all, it was a good heart to heart session and what better way to polish it off with some food!

Have a great day everyone! ~ Namaste, Elisha

Saturday 19 July 2014

Infant Massage: 10 Reasons to Massage Your Baby

Would You Like To:
  • Form a strong bond of love and trust with your baby?
  • Help your baby sleep better and for longer?
  • Ease your baby’s wind (gas) and colic pain?
  • Relieve your baby’s constipation?
  • Stimulate your baby’s neurological development?
  • Improve your baby’s health and general well-being?
  • Learn to understand your baby’s body language and cues?
  • Attend a relaxing and friendly baby massage class?
  • Meet other parents with babies

Infant massage makes babies feel loved, cherished and respected.

            Infant massage is a traditional art/skill passed down from generation to generation in various cultures such as in India, Africa, and Asia. However, many younger generations are unaware of infant massage and its benefits, or just don't have the time and energy to spend with their precious child.

            In today’s urban, modern society, the whole “working hours” are generally spent at work. Children are left to provide for themselves under another woman’s care. Even housewives are extremely busy running a home, doing housework and errands. It is not surprising that most mothers feel that they have gone through a whole day without some precious moments to spend bonding with their child.

            Infant massage will be a reason for you to have some dedicated bonding moments with your child. It’s about time parents free themselves from the stresses of society and give themselves permission to spend some quality, precious moments with their child through infant massage. Infant massage is not just for mothers, fathers also are highly encouraged to bond with their child by using this method. All you need is a few minutes to focus on bonding with your child!

            This would be a beginning of a healthy lifelong relationship which both parents and child desperately need. The benefits of infant massage far outweigh the cost, and you must invest the time for you and your child.

            Infant massage offers a wonderful experience to both parents and babies where a special time to communicate (verbally and non-verbally) with their babies is created. This communication makes babies feel loved, cherished and respected. Infant massage also gives an opportunity to create a trusting, nurturing and healthy relationship foundation with our children, which will enable them to be a better generation of mothers and fathers themselves. 

 Infant massage creates dedicated bonding moments with your child.

10 More Reasons to Massage Your Baby
  • To do something warm, loving and special with your baby
  • To help your baby sleep better (so you can!)
  • To help relieve constipation and help your baby have regular bowel movements
  • To reduce gas, colic, crying and reflux
  • To help you and your baby relax (a lifelong skill!)
  • To help your baby have a lifelong appreciation of touch and warm relationships
  • To improve your baby’s digestion and absorption of nutrients
  • To help your baby’s cognitive development
  • To learn how to communicate better with your baby
  • To help you and your baby fall in love with each other

Infant massage classes are a fun way to learn how to soothe your baby, relieve tummy upsets, learn to understand your baby’s non-verbal language and much, much more. Our classes are informal, relaxed, and small enough to ensure you get the personal attention you need.

Infant massage is simple, easy to learn and effective! 

Yours truly,
Jashpreet Kaur
Guest MySuryaYogaBaby blogger

Dear Surya Yoga members and blog readers, Jashpreet (Jash) is a certified IAIM practitioner and the founder of Baby Massage with Love in Malaysia. Do visit her website at

Feel free to contact Jash at 0162082442 or email her at Don't hesitate to ask her any questions you might have. She would be delighted to help. Thanks for reading everyone!

~ Namaste

Dates: 19, 26th October, 2, 9, 16th November 2014 (Attendence of all 5 session required)
Time: 10am - 12pm
Course fee: RM350 for Mommy, Daddy and Baby
Location: Surya Yoga, C-1-9, Jalan PJU 1/45 Aman Suria, Damansara 47410, Petaling Jaya 

Send your Name, Email and baby's age to 0162082442 (SMS/Whatsapp)

IAIM Infant Massage Course

Who can attend this course?
Parents with babies below the age of 1. 
*Exception for parents with adopted/fostered children and children with special needs (up to 7 years old)

How long is this course?
• 5 sessions in total, once a week for a duration of 5 weeks.
• Each session would be around 60-90 minutes.

What's provided?
• Infant massage lessons
• Handouts
• A bottle of massage oil (cold pressed vegetable oil)

What parents need to bring?
• Your loving baby
• Extra diapers
• A towel/blanket to put your baby on
• A small pillow (for newborn to a few weeks old babies)
* You may bring anything else you feel necessary for your baby as this course is a baby-led course where you can feel free to change, feed and calm your baby.

What's the cost for this Program (5 sessions)?
• Group Course: RM350 per parent/baby
* Special discounts for twins. 

Fathers are most welcomed to join the sessions with no extra charge. 

Terms and Conditions

Payment must be made by bank transfer after Baby Massage With Love has emailed you a confirmation of your booking. Seats are subject to availability. 

Refunds are not available once the course has started. Cancellation if you cancel your reservation more than one week before the course was to commence we shall refund your money. If we cancel, classes will be made up with a replacement class at a later date. 

Sickness Please do not attend if you are showing signs of stomach upset, contagious disease or if there are any signs of sickness in the family. 

Missed classes Baby Massage With Love understands that you may not be able to attend a class due to sickness or holiday, and although we cannot offer a refund, we will recap the last class each week and you will be given notes. Our costs remain the same regardless of attendance; therefore 48 hours notice is required. 

Safety is at all times our paramount concern. We will not be liable for any loss, damage or injury that may occur whilst attending our classes. 

You are bound to disclose any information regarding your own health relevant to the practice of the class you are attending. You are responsible for all applications of skills you may practice outside the classes both now and in the future.

Safety Guidelines

Parents work with their own baby.When practicing with your baby, never rush or force anything. If you feel stressed or tense, just take a break and come back to the practice later. Always ensure that you feel safe, secure and confident with the way you are holding or working with your baby. Never do anything that you do not feel comfortable with.

If your baby is unwell, it is best not to attend the massage class. Never practice on a distressed baby, or if your baby is limp, pale, has a temperature, or any difficulties breathing. Please seek appropriate medical help. It is not recommended to practice within 24 hours of your baby’s immunization

Tuesday 1 July 2014

Confinement Center 101: Jo's Bonda Villa Experience

Hi there moms, mom's-to-be, dads, dad's-to-be AND of course those that have stumbled upon our little prenatal yoga Surya Yoga blog by chance. I made my way to visit Josephine (or Jo as all of us at Surya Yoga studio affectionately call her) at Bonda Villa, this rather surprisingly homey confinement center in Kota Kemuning.

In truth, the journey to Kota Kemuning from Aman Suria I thought would be difficult, but with my 'waze' on hand, I made the journey and arrived in one piece . This time, I arrived early and my first impression of Bonda Villa? - WHOAH... Nothing about this place screamed 'confinement'. It was this huge bungalow (but I feel I need to call it a mansion to do it justice) with a lovely manicured green lawn.

Lovely quiet location. It's located in a more private housing area.

So, after I handed Jo a little congratulations card that everyone at Surya Yoga signed AND sat down on the comfy huge black sofa and asked her all about Bonda Villa and how they have been treating her. I made a few points below of what she expressed to me.

Jo and Baby Jolie, both doing great (and paparappapa lovin' our card!) Note the McDonalds theme reference *grins*

Interesting stuff about Bonda Villa

Shirley and Christine (co-owners of Bonda Villa and their own unique line of prenatal/postnatal apparel, the first and original - WearHouz) strongly advocate breast feeding. In fact Christine is also a dedicated breast feeding consultant and is always checking up on moms and their little ones in Bonda Villa. Shirley, equally as vibrant ensures that things run smoothly making sure the mommies (max 8) are comfy, happy and are taken care of. Their approach is really hands on and you can see how genuine they are in assisting all the recuperating mommies (including Jo).

Jo, Shirley and the'chef 'Pinky

Not the conventional menu for moms in confinement BUT all ingredients are carefully chosen and picked - anything that will cause discomfort for moms are banned from the kitchen. They may be more conventional, but they hang on to the ones that truly are effective.

The 8 moms at Bonda Villa eat their 5-6 meals together at the dining hall. Moms are definitely not confined to just their rooms. Tons of workshops and activities as well are held at Bonda Villa to keep everyone happy, informed and focused on recuperation and baby care.

Each baby has his/her meal plan book. Every detail is meticulously jotted down. These folks take their job seriously! It goes beyond a 'job', it's a passion!

Two words - Organic. Food - These lucky mommies get the best of the best! They get beautiful 'hormone-free' organic food made with love by Shirley's very own sister. I was around the dining hall during lunch hour, and yes, I would compare Shirley's sister's cooking to a high class fusion restaurant. Even the 'plating' was beautiful! Attention to detail! Jo and all the moms get a set of organic goodies including toiletries when they first enter Bonda Villa. In my opinion, this might be the best welcome gift ever!

Organic product are provided to mommy and baby here !

The lovely and also skilled and certified nurses are on 24 hours 'on call' care - for both mommy and baby. Even the use of diapers is a big no-no unless absolutely required. The use of cloth diapers is preferred - to me, I know them as 'kain lampin'. Diapers (the non-cloth type) as I found out from Jo is not comfy and not breathable.

Confinement lady? Wait, confinement certified nurses! (on call 24 hours)

Worthy of mention, Christine and Shirley's Wear Houz apparel! Just a 'print screen' of their dress collection. Their versatile clothing is for all stages of pregnancy and even postnatal. Comfy, flow-ey, stretchable material with 'discreet access' for breast feeding. From pregnancy to project runway? Christine and Shirley come up with their own designs too!

How loving is the Bonda Villa team?

Baby has rashes? Showing signs of eczema? Both Christine and Shirley and the team of nurses are right on it! Did I mention the 'emergency buttons' they have installed in the resident's rooms? Much like a hospital (or actually airplane flight as well), when the emergency or 'assist me' button is pressed, their room number/location is shown on this huge LED panel in the dining hall (followed by a 'ding ding ding' which I would compare to the usual shopping mall announcement music intro).

Mommy Jo and Baby Jolie (AND the comfy black sofa I was talking about)

Baby Jolie's little jaundice experience

So on with the story, on the fifth day, Jolie showed signs of jaundice. As any mom would be, even if jaundice is not uncommon, Jo panicked at the thought of baby Jolie having to stay in the hospital for photo therapy sessions. The hospital, surprisingly and conveniently nearby, has the machine for it. So there were plans to get baby Jolie to the hospital and Jo made plans with Christine and Shirley that they take her every 2 hours to the hospital for breastfeeding. Naturally not an enjoyable or comfortable experience for a mother in confinement.

This is the part where Jo expressed with much gratitude and emotion that Christine and Shirley actually rented the photo therapy machine from the hospital for baby Jolie! Jolie didn't have to be admitted and Jo got to breastfeed Jolie every 2 hours and still get some well-deserved recuperation time! The nurses, certified and experienced had zero problems helping out with the photo therapy.

Christine and Shirley brought the hospital to Jo! Jo didn't have to make trips to the hospital every 2 hours for breastfeeding. It could have been a very stressful period for both baby and mommy but thankfully the Bonda Villa team went all out to help.

Living room area with little baby cots. All the wee babies tucked in nicely and I imagine, enjoying the lovely soothing music. The place was filled with the 'new baby' smell!

Something about the interior design feels 'just like home'

The bungalow was very spacious and had this hint of 'traditional kampung nature' feel. Lots of nice dark wood around the rooms. Perhaps the term 'traditional kampung' may not sound appealing. Okay, I'll compare it to a fancy resort/spa feel. If you have a look at the list of services they provide, I guess I like the mix of modern and conventional feel to the place. Bonda Villa also provide post natal massages, mandi bunga baths and their intensive list of post natal service.

Postpartum Depression?

Christine and Shirley brought it up in our little heart to heart conversation. Apparently mommies, especially those that have to go through confinement have a very high tendency to develop postpartum depression. It doesn't help that even sometimes, for those at other centers or decide to stay at home, can't get a long with their confinement lady. Sometimes wrong advice is give and wrong information is given too.

O' sweet child of mine...

So the Bonda Villa dynamic duo has a super strong policy of always being around and available at Bonda Villa to lend a ear, shoulder and sometimes, a bowl of lovely desert to turn any frowns upside down. Bonda Villa has so many great activities for the 8 moms which keeps everyone pleasantly distracted and between the post natal massages, treatments and the every two hour breastfeeding, the moms really don't have the time to focus on any sadness brought upon by nasty changes in their hormone levels.

Comfy spacious rooms. 

In the living room is a little clothes line of baby names and mommies. I reckon it's Bonda Villa's version of a 'guest book'. I'm sure many mommies come back (more than 1x!) for the rest of their little litter.

More about Bonda Villa to come! 


Wednesday 11 June 2014

12th July 2014: Upcoming Couples Prenatal Yoga Workshop with Josephine Chan

Please contact us at or contact Josephine Chan at 0162027417 for more information. We look forward to hearing from you.