Yoga is so much more than asana, the physical practice. We incorporate yoga into our everyday lives by acting with compassion, practicing mindfulness in our daily activities, and sharing our knowledge of a more sustainable and responsible world with others. This is the real Yoga. It is Yoga brought to life through our actions, how we speak to one another, and even how we conduct business. Our teacher Bex Tyrer calls this “Yoga Activism”.
Blanka graduated with Akasha 200hr Yoga teacher training in Ubud, Bali, March 2019, and uses Yoga and her work — upcycling tyres and other materials — to bring a positive impact to the world.
Who is Blanka?
Blanka is a Spanish artist and designer who genuinely cares for the planet. Having studied theater and art in her home country, she got awarded a scholarship to study traditional arts in Indonesia. This is where she met her team, and created the ArtCycleBali project. Blanka also graduated from the 200hr Hatha Yoga teacher training at Akasha Yoga Academy, March 2019, and is now assisting during the course, giving adjustments to students. She also gives privates, as well as Yoga classes to women in prison.
What is the ArtCycleBali project?
ArtCycleBali is a boutique in the heart of Ubud, Bali, co-created by Blanka and her team. Together, they make the most beautiful art pieces from upcycled material: earrings, bracelets, bags, wallets, and more. Each piece is 100% zero waste, vegan, hand-crafted with love and mindfulness using upcycled tyres or discarded advertising banners.
Jewelry from Upcycled Tyres Workshop with Akasha Yoga graduates
What is upcycling?
Upcycling is the process of using a product or material that would otherwise be thrown away and turning it into something useful and of a higher value. Examples of upcycling include converting plastic bottles into drip irrigation for your garden, melting down Styrofoam into any moldable product, using old plastic bags to weave into sun hats and hammocks, and using old tyres to create pieces of art. The work done by Blanka and her team has a direct impact on the environment. Indonesia is in the midst of a waste crisis. Waste from both locals and tourists pollutes the rivers and valleys around the islands. With 17000 islands, and around 260 million people, the consumption of plastic and tyres increases on a daily basis. These unfortunately end up either burnt in the landfills, or thrown in the ocean. The petrol in a tyre takes thousands of years to breakdown and old tyres, when filled with rain, create more mosquitoes, thus increasing the spread of diseases. As such, upcycling tyres directly contributes to depollute the planet and our health.
ArtCycleBali is helping reduce waste in Bali. This is such a beautiful example of Yoga Activism that brings awareness to the issues surrounding garbage, and the effect upcycling can have on a community. As practitioners of Yoga, we have a responsibility not only to ourselves, but to all beings on the planet. We have the responsibility to make mindful, conscious decisions through our interactions with others, our food, our transportation choices, and our purchases. By supporting local businesses, we support the environment around us. We are able to positively impact a community by purchasing products that are made with love, care, and upcycled materials um diese jungs herumblättern.
We are so happy to see our graduates producing responsible products and services. Head to artcyclebali.net to see their beautiful creations and their new collection!
About the author:
Lauren is a 500hr Akasha Yoga teacher who graduated with Blanka March 2019. She came back for her 300hr Advanced Yoga teacher training in August 2019 and is now teaching in her home town in California. She wrote this article as part of her work exchange program with Akasha.