A heartfelt thank you
to everyone for their
kind words and friendship
along the way.
You may be interested to read these clients’ reflections, so gratefully received over these past years, illustrating the depth of their yoga experience.
They speak of the calming and soothing qualities of a consistent yoga practice, and the nurturing and joyous aspects of the tours and retreats.
Gain a deeper insight into the world according to Cool, Calm & Collected.
Almost 10 years ago I was introduced to Yoga by my dear friend Annemaree Rowley of Cool Calm and Collected.
At that point in my life I was tittering on the edge of a total meltdown. Like most high achievers believing being time poor, constantly tired, under duress and always working towards an impossible deadline was a sign of success. I remember putting a line through a full diary each evening with a sigh of relief - I had managed to get through another day – thank god. What a way to live your life, stumbling from one self-imposed crisis to another.
And then I was so very fortunate to have the opportunity to spend time with Annemaree and to, under her guidance, immerse myself in daily Yoga. Not todays commercially branded Yoga, but, as I like to refer to it : the real deal - Hatha Yoga, call it slow Yoga, call it classical, it changed my life.
Annemaree gently and wisely guided me to look at my life force and how I was spending it. I am still amazed that she was able to get me to slow down, to breath and to embrace the rewards of a dedicated Yoga practice. The moment when I was able to combine the physical postures with the philosophy of Yoga made me feel very calm, very quiet and very content.
I will admit that in the beginning it did not just happen. I found the physical practice achievable, but breathing long slow breaths near impossible, a monkey mind that would not turn off and to let go of my ego – what ego? The postures looked good!
Annemaree’s extensive knowledge and gentle consistent challenging guidance helped me work on this and the rewards have changed my life. I am so much calmer, I don’t react easily and I certainly don’t sweat the small stuff. I find I am much better able to parent with a measured, consistent approach ( I have 3 teenage boys) and now I even like them.
Physically I sleep better, my appetite is good, I maintain a healthy weight while enjoying good food ( and the occasional glass of red) and the strength and flexibility of the postures help to keep me energized.
Yoga is part of my daily life and I cannot imagine my life without it.
I have been blessed to travel the world and on many occasions with Annemaree where I have immersed myself in Yoga on her amazing Yoga tours and retreats.
Yoga has helped me to put my priorities in order and to lift my level of consciousness, to detach from life’s negatives and the superficial and the mercenary. To accept what we cannot change, to let go of the thoughts and habits we no longer need.
In Yoga we set a Sankalpa – (an intention) mine is to leave the practice happy and content.
Is there any better intension than to be happy and content with your life?
Thank you Annemaree for sharing, guiding and encouraging me to develop my practice. Yoga has made my life much more relaxed, tranquil and composed – I suppose really more Cool Calm & Collected.
Rubies & Roses - Rajasthan & Beyond, India, 2013
Hi Annemaree, thanks again for organising such a fantastic trip.
I always feel in a much better space after spending time with you which reflects your insight, postive energy and incredible selflessness and giving spirit.
The “Cool, Calm & Collected” meditation sessions opened my eyes to the many benefits of deep relaxation. Not only does it improve your quality of life in being able to deal with life’s stresses, it allows you to take on more and be happy!! When you are relaxed and happy you start to see the many positives in the world that you normally pass by.
Annemaree is a very special person with very special gifts and I highly recommend her meditation and relaxation classes to all.
Land of 1000 Smiles - Kerala, India 2011
The Cool Calm and Collected Kerala trip is the experience of a lifetime.
I returned feeling a sense of wellness that resulted from an assault on the senses: unforgettable scenery, vibrant culture, amazing hospitality, warm hosts, fresh and tasty food, envigorating yoga, and exceptional friendship amongst our group.
I would love to go back and do the whole trip again.
Thank you I have received my CD & love it! I enrolled with The Paleo Way & have completed the course & apart from the weight loss, I have also really enjoyed the benefits of the meditations. I listen to them every night just before bed & have found they help me to relax & assisted me in staying focused during the long days I work.
Thank's again from a big fan.
Land of 1000 Smiles - Kerala, India 2011
Exhale.... the inhale will take care of itself!
I had the privilege of attending the 'Land of 1000 Smiles' - Kerala, India 2011 and it has touched me ever since.
As a mother, spouse, business owner and operator, there is very little time in my life to “just be me”. It was a huge indulgence for me to take a few weeks away from responsibility to escape into another world, but it was well worth it.
I met Annemaree on a marketing course many years ago, and at that time could see she was a person that lived by her ethos (something I greatly admire). Although we had little face to face contact in the intervening years, her newsletter was a refreshing “breath” for me each month it arrived, so I stayed subscribed. Needless to say when I actually decided to go, my expectations of the trip and Annemaree herself were high. I was not disappointed in any way!
I have travelled to India in the past, but feel Kerala is the best of India I have seen. The lush vegetation, beautiful backwaters, fabulous food, magnificent accommodation, to die for massages and oh so friendly people are memories I will treasure forever. Little reminders come up in my daily life since I have returned, and I am transported back to a place and time that is special. In this environment of sensory overload, it was amazing how relaxed I became.
Of course this had much to do with the gentle morning yoga and meditation under the expert guidance of Annemaree. She is a model of calm and nurturing, as she adapts the classes based on the needs of her students, and she is so perceptive at reading people! The benefits took about a week to materialise, but after that I felt amazing.
I had no qualms about travelling alone on this tour as I knew there would be other “likeminded” travellers/yoga enthusiasts. The fabulous ladies I did meet were an absolute hoot - we laughed our way around Kerala and created lifelong memories.
I see Annemaree each week now for a yoga class, trying hard not to allow the chaos of daily life undo the benefits of a trip I will always remember. Sincere thanks Annemaree.
Yoga Sessions, Meditation Courses & 'Santimarga' CD
I was given a gift certificate for Annemaree’s yoga and meditation classes eight years ago and have been addicted to them ever since. Annemaree’s classes are as restorative for the mind as they are for the body. After one of her classes all of the small, unimportant issues/stressors are back in perspective and I can focus on enjoying the good stuff.
Annemaree herself is one of the most caring, thoughtful and peaceful people I have ever met. Her classes radiate this and that’s exactly how I feel when I leave them - radiating peace and happiness.
I am a 73 year old lawyer who over many years has played many and varied sports, some at a high level. I have also experienced great stress in my life with a busy career and also revolving around the mental illness of one of my sons. Added to this was the serious illness and death of my wife who was the most decent and supportive human being I have met on my journey through life.
I was introduced to Yoga 15 years ago by my late wife. I attended only to support her as I had a misconception there was something a bit sissy about Yoga and that blokes who went were likely to engage in knitting or basket weaving in their spare time.
How wrong was I. I have found Yoga to be not only a strenuous form of exercise albeit in a gentle way but also one that has developed in me great flexibility as well as muscular strength. Added to this I find a good Yoga session brings about a great feeling of mental, spiritual and physical well being....far in excess of anything I ever experienced during my active sporting years.
Over the last 15 years I have practised Yoga under many teachers in many countries. To date I have found Annemaree Rowley's classes to be amongst the best. They are very well planned and structured. I leave her classes feeling every muscle has been gently challenged and also carry with me a feeling of mild euphoria and a general feeling of good health. I would say without reservation that my Yoga has better equipped me to deal with the stress that has blocked my path at times.
I’ve been practicing yoga for almost 4 years now and couldn’t imagine my life without it.
After searching lots of yoga studio’s websites for a beginners class, I came across Annemaree’s website.
The look of her site and her words regarding yoga and the uncertainties some people have when wanting to start resonated with me.
Upon meeting her I felt truly welcomed and that I wasn’t just another warm body on a mat, but someone who she wanted to get to know and share yoga with. I always tell people that her voice is so calming and warm, it immediately puts me at ease and I can relax and just follow her instructions.
She guides you into the poses with simple instructions and not just their names, helping limit that uncomfortable feeling of not knowing what you’re supposed to be doing. If someone has a request for postures that will help alleviate a certain pain, she has no problem doing so.
I always leave her classes feeling relaxed, having found peace for at least 1.5hrs, as well as having an understanding of what the poses do for the body. I’m so glad I came across her website 4 years ago and that I’ve had the opportunity to meet and learn from such a genuine, caring and openhearted person.
I remember first inquiring about yoga classes with Annemaree back in 2009 and telling her "I just want to learn to breathe properly - I feel like I am never breathing properly." I know that sounds absurd since we all know how to breathe from the moment we are born. But as we grow older and our lives are filled with more stress, anxiety and pressure, our quality of breathing (as well as health) diminishes. I mean, when was the last time you took a long deep breath right from the stomach and really enjoyed the sensation of re-energizing yourself and feel your stress melt away?
Right from the start, going to yoga class was like going to my safe haven away from the mobile, email and computer. It's so easy to become addicted to the (relaxed) high you get after a class as well as how clear and positive your mind becomes. It's also great to see how quickly our body and mind improve when we nurture and nourish them with yoga and meditation (and it's is so satisfying when you can finally conquer a new yoga position!).
For me, Annemaree's yoga class has helped me in my own time address the way I was living my life and how off- balance it was. I would walk into class highly strung and stressed and walk out transformed. I was always surprised at the contrast and decided enough was enough - it was time to focus on how to make my everyday life feel like a yoga class. Life is too short to work 24/7 in an unsatisfying stressful job. So for me this has meant a career change. It hasn't been easy but because of meditation and Annemaree's teachings I am now learning to listen to my heart and intuition and I now know I am following the right path for me. I vow never to go back to my old lifestyle as it was just a dead end.
Whether you are looking for a healthier lifestyle, ways to relax and de-stress or even feel a bit lost, I urge you to give yoga a go and stick with it because while the transformation may not be immediate, after a while you will begin to notice changes in your body and the way you see things. Over the two years I have been a student, I have loved seeing how flexible I have become. But more importantly these classes have helped me uncover what I truly want in life. Yoga and meditation will always be in my life. Thank you Annemaree.
As a complete beginner, I had tried to establish a (daily) Yoga practice so many times that I had decided that the discipline just wasn't for me. However, after starting to train with Annemaree in Hatha Yoga almost by accident, (I accepted a one month free trial offer to participate in a new multi-discipline clinic), I soon found out that here was a style that I could enjoy and make progress with. To my pleasant surprise I achieved significant results in health and flexibility without feeling that I was 'busting a gut' to do so. The classes were well structured to push you only as far as you wanted to go and the combination of gentle stretching and relaxation at the end left my mind clear and my body fresh and energetic. It was not long before I found myself going because I felt I 'needed to go' rather than feeling that I 'ought to go'. I strongly recommend this teacher and this style to anyone who is new to the discipline and interested in finding out what it's about; or anyone who has trained in Yoga before but has not achieved what they were hoping to.
Just wanted to say thank you for what you do. As a guy I took up yoga reluctantly after a back injury from many years of cycling and the rotating door of the physio.
Beginning yoga as a man can be quite intimidating and I originally practiced independently with very little guidance.
Since being introduced to you, Annemaree, I have found your approach refreshing and adaptable with the initial focus being to provide a physically challenging practice without the more spiritual and meditative aspects of yoga.
As and when I have expressed a desire to broaden my knowledge you have introduced many different techniques to enhance my understanding of yoga.
The results speak for themselves as I have stopped seeing the physio, feel physically stronger and a lot less stressed from the daily grind of life. You have improved my quality of life through your practical approach to teaching, thank-you!