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OM Yoga and Lifestyle Magazine What is the attraction? It was approximately 12 months ago that I happened upon the first ever copy of OM magazine. The original design being slightly different to how it is now - it has progressed, grown and developed in a short space of time. I resonate with the philosophy of yoga and also like to meditate so the title caught my eye and my imagination immediately. There are a couple of other yoga magazines that I had trialled before so I wondered how this would differ - how could they make it stand out from the crowd? What could they offer me that I couldn't get in any other yoga magazines or books or online? The cover is glossy and attractive - I like the simplicity of the graphics. Unlike regular magazines it keeps the contents to a minimum - this very much appealed as I really don't like a cluttered and overwhelming amount of headlines on a cover. After a brief flick through - as you do when looking at magazines - I made a decision to purchase and I felt rather elated by it. A magazine for someone like me! It felt like a comfortable fit - a new friend. I anticipated an engaging and inspirational read. First impressions... I will base my opinion on the magazine as it stands today - December 2011. This is the issue that I have in front of me and on the cover is the rather beautiful Psalm Isadora who is a yoga teacher. Long dark hair and a toned and slender body she demonstrates - serenely - a twisting pose in seated position. You cannot help but gaze at her. At £3.50 the magazine is priced at the higher end of the market - do the contents and quality of presentation represent this? At quite a nice weight and with the thick and lush cover it feels and looks expensive. There are 114 pages to browse and this for me is an adequate amount - it is achievable and not off putting. I like the formatting on the cover. The title of Om Yoga and lifestyle is creative and unlike any other magazine in this field that I have seen - so it stands out from the others and draws you to it. The Om symbol is nestled inside the O of Om and appears on each page - a nice touch. Along the left hand side are four captions that give you a taste of what is inside and on the right hand side is one highlighted announcement that tells you that an expensive prize may be won if you enter a competition - the prizes in this magazine are often very expensive and unique. Along the bottom is a modest account of four other articles included in the issue - I like the small snapshot as it tempts me in but does not put me off by offering me too much at once. I enjoy a pleasant surprise when I open up the magazine. Overall the first impressions are that this is going to be a great read and I cannot wait to begin. I like your style... This magazine has class and style and more importantly it makes sense. The contents are managed in a way that works for me - it is incredibly well organised but has little surprises occasionally that make me smile. First up is a short message from the editor which is presented beautifully and really sets the tone for the issue - you have an idea of what to expect before you begin. A nicely presented page that contains all contributors is next and I like the fact that you can locate a particular person should you want to know more about them or how to contact them. As you would expect the contents page comes next and this is separated into categories as well as listing page numbers - it is a great concept and works really well. A lot of effort to get things right has paid off big time because this magazine works! What I like best about this magazine is that every page offers something wonderfully unique. Be it a new product that they are showcasing that I have almost always never heard off - this is great because it opens up a whole new world of fabulous companies and products. Reader profiles which are so lovely because you get to see what yoga means to someone else and how it has changed their life - a double page photograph of them in a special place in a yoga pose is inspirational and the write up is just enough and not too much. All of the articles in the magazine are in manageable chunks so that you can pick up the magazine anytime and enjoy a full article - this is brilliant as I like to finish reading once I have begun and I always get new knowledge and inspiration from them. Sometimes an article may be on a topic that I am already gemmed up on but somehow I still learn something new! A different perspective. Each issue will focus on nutrition and remedies for the season that it is representing and this is much appreciated. In this issue the focus is on colds and how yoga can help prevent and cure them. This article made real sense to me - I sat up and took notice. The philosophy is that when you are affected by a cold virus it is your body communicating with you and telling you to 'put the brakes on'. You need to rest, relax and allow your body time to heal. How true this is in today's society - pressure and stress drain us of our energy and deplete the immune system. How often in a day do you get the chance to relax fully? I mean really relax? Another article that I enjoyed reading in this issue was 'feel the fear and do it anyway' once again I resonated with it - it is so true that most people live by reacting to actions and worry about the past or future. This article is concise and informative - I was inspired and empowered after reading it. I absolutely love the recipe section - it is vibrant and captures my imagination. I feel like creating all manner of goodies in the kitchen when I have seen the images and read the easy instructions on these pages. And they do not skimp on this section - there is plenty on offer to experiment with. What impressed me was the calibre of chef that they have published recipes from - one of them is Rose Elliots Pine Nut and Carrot Roast with mushroom sauce! A well respected lady and boy do I fancy having a go at that one! I'll have to adapt it for me as it is vegetarian and I'm vegan but it is great that the magazine offers veggie fayre. They do include some vegan goodies though and one of those is a Frosted Fizz drink which sounds pretty good. A regular feature is a book and DVD section - recommended by the magazine. I like to see what is new and sometimes I have purchased one after seeing it in the magazine. There is always a small set of postures demonstrated and concisely instructed - these are quality pages and very beneficial. I also like the spiritual element to the magazine which will often highlight meditation and how to make a special sacred space in your home. This magazine also has a chakra article that is understandable and easily digested as it is bite sized. This really is great as I get a clear overview of the chakra and all relevant information quick as a flash - it's a snippet of what I already have an understanding off but you are always learning and it is good to refresh the memory. I like the fact that the magazine includes all types of yoga - Kundalini Yoga has been highlighted in the past which was fabulous and quality material and very much appealed to me. Other stand out features are foods that are in season - where they are from, what they are used for, benefits and how to cook with them. Really good as I am introduced to new ones that I can experiment with. This month is - Jerusalem Artichoke! Essential oils are featured too which I found very interesting as there was a DIY section which included carrier oils and safe mixtures for all manner of things including dry skin. You can make your own face serum! I love this magazine. I get pretty excited about the next issue and spend quality time reading it. I am always calm and happy when I have read some part of the magazine. I have a years subscription and it always arrives swiftly and in immaculate condition before it hit's the stores. Sourcing the magazine... Sainsburys Tesco Price £3.50 OR... Subscription via ommagazine.com This is the best option as there are often offers on so that you pay less and get free gifts for joining. You may pay for the year via cheque or online. You get 10 issues per year. Website... www.ommagazine.com Worth a look and you can preview pages of recent issues and order back issues here. Finally... If you like a glossy, quality magazine that is beautifully presented and is formatted in a user friendly way then you may like this one. I totally resonate with all that this magazine offers and just love finding something new and intriguing throughout the pages. It is in bite size chunks and easy to read from cover to cover or flick through and see what takes your fancy. I don't just read it once as I have to keep going back to it for another hit! It has everything and includes OM body, OM mind, OM spirit, OM living, OM actions and OM regulars. I just love it! Mum waits patiently until I am ready to let her have it - that can be a while though! It's a competitive price for a magazine of such quality - presentation, paper and content - it is professionally done but very accessible. A subscription saves you money, guarantees you don't miss an issue and often you will receive a gift - promptly. It's an efficient company. Because of the comprehensive content and how it is presented I find that this magazine offers more to me than its competitors. When I have read other Yoga magazines I have felt like I have enjoyed them but not to the lofty heights that I feel when I am reading this one - it oozes wisdom and spirituality whilst offering extremely beneficial lifestyle advice. I have never been tempted to subscribe to a yoga magazine before this one came along so it has definitely got something that the others lack. It has something for all of its readers and has got it spot on. Well done OM Magazine and Lifestyle - a job well done. Recommended? YES - HIGHLY Rating? FIVE STARS Thank you for reading. Also published on Ciao.