There are so many alternative methods out there right? Which is great, because it means that as holistic professionals we are doing our job at spreading the word of the benefits of complimentary therapies… These have been developed based on tradition, on research, on experience and even on fads… and I am an honest lady, so here’s a truth, as a qualified yoga instructor and fitness instructor, when I first heard of Face Yoga, I was a little sceptical, I thought it was a craze and not a credible therapy – I was ignorant about it… In fact, I giggled a little and thought “What’s that all about?”
I then began to contort my face, imagining what Face Yoga could possible be… And then I Googled it… of course I did… Why? Because that is what businesswomen working from home do, we Google things because generally we don’t have work colleagues to ask, or a boardroom of executives to discuss important matters such as these with…
And so I switched screens from the client webpage that I was updating, and turned to my trusted colleague Mr Google… For research purposes…
“Wow, so this Face Yoga thing is popular,”
“…the Face Yoga Expert seems sweet,”
“Oh she has even been on a few TV shows.”
New Google search… this time in the cyber direction of YouTube, and I found quite a few videos, even a clip of Danielle Collins, the founder of Face Yoga, explaining to Anne Robinson the youthful and beauty benefits of her method. Ironic, in a good way, and for this reason I already liked Danielle, so much so I decided to contact her, with the view of interviewing her about her method and to shatter the preconceptions I first had about Face Yoga. Although by this point even I was fully aware that the cheeks would not be doing downward facing dog, or the lips wouldn’t be resting in Tadasana (mountain pose) – But I still wanted to find out the whole story behind this method. (You can read about the method on Danielle’s website: The Danielle Collins Face Yoga Method).
Danielle has a warmth about her. She is youthful looking, so a fab advert for her method, and she seemed very humble when we spoke. Obviously, I wanted to find out exactly why Danielle started Face Yoga?
“I was diagnosed with M.E shortly after finishing university, and I was told by doctors that there was no cure, which obviously as a young girl it was difficult to hear that I would have to live with this illness for the rest of my life.”
I asked: Sure, what happened next?
“I was really just determined to find a way to get better, so I started researching stress management, natural nutrition, yoga and complimentary therapies.”
Already it became clear that Danielle’s method was not just another beauty technique promising results, based on a trend… I had to ask… are you better now?
“Yes, thankfully,” she said with a smile, “By applying this new knowledge and these therapies I’d researched, to my daily life, I managed to overcome the illness within two years of being diagnosed.”
That must have been a relief.
“Yes, I felt happier and healthier than ever before. And this was the turning point for me, and I wanted to help others in the same way, whether it was to overcome an illness, getting them to feel good about themselves or looking their very best.”
What was your next step?
“I trained in holistic therapies and began teaching many Yoga classes. I recognised the positive effects on my clients’ bodies and also how yoga relaxed them.”
So where did the face yoga come from?
“Well my clients were asking questions like “my body looks great, but what about my face?” And this got me thinking.”
Danielle then began to research the face and the way it works and investigated age-old techniques from India and China, and subsequently put together The Danielle Collins Face Yoga Method. She has taught this around the world, on television and in the media, and it is the most popular Face Yoga method taught internationally…
What is it all about?
“The Danielle Collins Face Yoga Method is a natural way of looking and feeling younger and healthier with an added sense of relaxation and wellbeing. It is a combination of face exercises, face massage, face acupressure and face relaxation. It also focuses on wellbeing techniques for the mind, body and soul. It is a natural face lift.”
Surely there is a limit to how many exercises you can do with such a small space?
“The main programme has 18 exercises which take 20 minutes to complete, 10 minutes for the upper face and 10 minutes for the lower face. There are also additional techniques, and teachers can include their creative take on the techniques, as long as they are trained and consider health, safety, the principles of the method and anatomy of the face.”
Danielle was glowing with enthusiasm when she talked about her business – maybe this is just another effect of practising Face Yoga regularly?
“I love the fact that the method works of course, and that it is successful, because it organically happened – I was seeing the results and gradually began to build up research and it is now a solid method… And my Face Yoga teachers are from all different walks of life… some have a beauty background, some a fitness, and some have no background in these areas, just an interest in looking and feeling great and sharing the method with others.”
Okay, so I’m a yoga instructor, and I’d probably grasp the concept, but what about those people who’ve mentioned that have never done yoga?
“Face Yoga is for everybody and can be practised anywhere too. Somebody doesn’t have to do other yoga methods in order to enjoy and practise and benefit from Face Yoga.”
What effect does it have?
“Regular practice has anti-ageing effects, helps with reducing lines and wrinkles, lifting and firming, improving skin tone, reducing headaches and eye strain, relaxing tension, giving an energetic appearance to the face and a healthy glow. Face Yoga also gives a holistic feeling of wellbeing which can benefit the mind and body.”
Danielle explained more about the process, and I was starting to really think… why haven’t I practised this before?
There are five aspects to The Danielle Collins Face Yoga Method and here is how they work:
Face Exercise: just as your body needs regular exercise to stay toned and firm, the 57 muscles in the face and neck also need to be exercised. As they become stronger through exercise they are lifted and firmed and the skin attached to the muscles is also lifted and tautened, therefore reducing lines and wrinkles. As the muscles are much smaller than those in the body, it takes a lot less time for them to increase in strength and tone.
Face Massage: by regularly massaging the face using the techniques from The Danielle Collins Face Yoga Method, you will increase the circulation, lymph flow and remove toxins. This will reduce poor skin tone, puffiness and dark circles and allow the skin to look healthier and more youthful. The massage techniques will also increase the collagen and elastin, the natural plumping agents which will mean a firmer and healthier complexion.
Acupressure: this age-old technique works by pressing on certain points on the face. This can increase the flow of the subtle energy or prana in the face. This therefore reduces tension, increases circulation and gives a healthy glow to the skin.
Relaxation: by learning to relax tension in the face this will help to reduce and prevent the deep set lines and wrinkles caused by stress, squinting or grimacing. The Danielle Collins Face Yoga Method allows you to relax the face correctly giving it a more open, youthful look.
Wellbeing: Remember that taking time to do the Wellbeing aspect of The Danielle Collins Face Yoga Method will also do wonders for you overall health and happiness. Taking time to relax, do something for you, and knowing you will look and feel better as a result may mean you also notice yourself feeling calmer and more energised as well as looking younger and healthier. What happens on the inside, radiates on the outside!
What is your philosophy?
“We should all have the opportunity to look and feel the very best we can for our age and to have the tools and knowledge to look after the health of our faces, just like we do with our bodies.”
I like this philosophy too, so much so that I have decided to do the course, and I will let you know how it goes… It will be reviewed as part of HTM’s CPD Courses for 2016… AND for those of you who wish to find out more check out this clip… Oh and have a go yourself.