You are the driver…

Dear Practitioners

Having received a parking ticket at Langford Friday evening for forgetting to display ‘time arrived’ (ouch!) it got me thinking on the whole parking and driving to Yoga practice thing again.  Soon we will be back at our home on Rue De Funchal and we would like to bring your kind attention to a couple of things in relation to how you access your Yoga class.  Most studios around the world wouldn’t get involved with such stuff; after all Yoga instructors are not the general contractors for practitioners life; they are just the Yoga instructor; it is up to the student how they go about it; our role is facilitating Yoga practice after all; but at YM we feel a little bit differently about the time immediately surrounding your experience (the journey to and from class) and I will explain why hereafter.

We are part of a small community and our students wellbeing is primary; we do not want your journey to/from class to be a source of anxiety for you and we think it helps if we just draw minds/attention of those who drive to a few factors that can make the difference of ensuring a stress free beginning to practice; if you engage with it mentally/adapt where you need to, it might make ALL the difference.

Driving: Please be mindful; the speed limits around town centre area has changed since we have been away from Rue De Funchal; Please be aware of the new 20mph limits close to the studio/parking.

Traffic & Parking: We had even written a poem in the past! {click drivingtips4usYogis}. Driving, traffic and parking in St Helier is a problem these days. People HAVE to factor TIME of travel and time to find parking in to their journey to Yoga class; This has to happen but we cannot help drivers on this front.

We have been at our town location for 8 years next month 7 days a week. We are highly alert to the change in ‘parking available’ circumstances that have occurred in the last 2 years.  Parking spaces have been disappearing (it has felt like by stealth sometimes). We have been writing to ‘various’ departments over this time about this problem; more recently being ignored (my last 2 emails asking when the ‘parking standards’ consultation that was due to be issued in January 2019 is coming out; have not received any response).  Obviously we are concerned about what our business can expect car park pressure wise for its future.  We are unsure if the vitality of our business or our end of town is going to be sufficiently supported by a car park that meets needs as this area develops (and it is developing) and more and more residences are being built (or commercial premises being converted to homes) without parking around here.

The States went on a lot in their parking needs document of 2013 about their aims to reduce car traffic and increase other travel modes; We do not believe that the reduction of spaces around town over last 6 years was matched by use of more sustainable transport modes. i.e. States have certainly stayed on track reducing spaces given over to car parking but are ahead of their reducing car traffic so these two aims were not ‘in line’. Maybe being ahead on one was a tactic to try to force the other but that does not help all the small business operating around our end of town and besides I don’t think it has worked! People are not going to stop owning cars overnight and start using buses and bikes and the population is not going to decrease.

OBVIOUSLY WE ARE AWARE THAT ‘PARKING NEEDS’ AND ‘CLIMATE CRISES’ ARE A CONFLICT.  Personally, we are TOTALLY ON BOARD with the need for urgent response/action to the climate crises that is facing our planet.  Less cars and less polluting cars and using public transportation more and cycling/walking has got to be part of the solution AND IT NEEDS TO HAPPEN QUICKLY.  Absolutely parts of the population need to get fitter; another States concern and reason to want more people cycling/walking.  St Helier isn’t Amsterdam where they have been organized on this front for decades (the infrastructure design and the flatness of the landscape being conducive to creating a culture of ‘no cars’ there).  Our local government had decades of being made aware of the issues and yet (like the rest of the world) only responding now.  BUT we think that Jersey’s gov’t needs to be really careful that it doesn’t suck the life out of St Helier with knee jerk reactions to this crisis. Right now ‘tho everything is moving to a critical point; finally those in authority appear to be taking climate change seriously and I presume they are working in the background revising that overdue ‘parking standards’ consultation (probably why they haven’t responded to me) to meet standards set and their commitments recently made re zero carbon emissions.  A combination of people changing habits and government making strong/right decisions is what has to happen but with no sign of the parking standards document I fear dealing with it has been kicked into the long grass or worse ignored because they just don’t know what to do (well. I don’t know what the status of it is, do I?)

In the meantime whilst they are ‘parlez’ing about it please please the few that drive please consider your driving/parking logistics in relation to your Yoga practice from your perspective, how it affects you, how you can get to class safely, stress free and on time. We have these same (sometimes unexpected) traffic and parking problems ourselves.  We know what it is like and we know how we have had to adapt to factor in the ‘sometimes unexpected’ to make sure we are always safely at the studio on time for practitioners.  We are sympathetic but please, if you are a driver and you book to come to class terms still apply and we are waiting for you. Drive safely.  You need to know in advance whether your journey is going to work for you and that booking that you made.

Om Om Om You Are The Driver



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