Showing posts from November, 2016

Four Ways Yoga is Not Just About Flexibility

Sometimes you hear that yoga is only for the really flexible or for people who are already in great shape. Of course this isn't true but the media and advertisements do a great job of mostly showing people in really great shape bending themselves into poses that the average person may never achieve. That can lead you to feel that yoga is not for normal people and certainly not for you. I am here to tell you that yoga can be for anyone.

Most people probably hear yoga and think of a fast moving vinyasa or a sweaty hot yoga class filled with Sanskrit words and bendy bodies. The beautiful thing about yoga, that I love, is the fact you can modify a class and participate seated in a chair, lying down in bed, or even slow it down to a pace that is manageable for you. Here are some other types of practice that could be used in creating a balanced practice or practiced on their own.

Restorative Practice: If you're like me and work, have kids, and are stressed all the time you might hea…

The Bodhi Flow

As I've been going through Yoga Teacher Training I have gone back and forth between wanting to practice either following along in a class or video or wanting to just free flow and do whatever felt right for my body at the time. As a parent and full time professional, I can say that some days if I didn't just free flow a few poses before dropping into my evening meditation, I would go days or weeks without practicing yoga. So, for me at this point in my life I do find some value in having the knowledge to tackle the things I need most at that time.

When I have the time and space to participate in a full practice I can tell you it's night and day different. A full practice can provide you with the structure you need to find balance. A well structured practice often has seated poses, standing poses, backbends, and maybe even some inversions. It will ensure you're working both the left and right sides of your body equally and will provide you the adequate time to process y…

Let's Get Physical

If you're the type who's considering yoga for the what it can do for your body here are ten things a regular yoga practice can do for you.
Yoga gives skin a healthy glow by detoxing through sweating, balancing hormones, and boosting the flow of oxygen rich blood to the skin.Yoga strengthens the bones and keeps optimal range of motion through the joints.Yoga strengthens, tones, and lengthens the muscles through movement.Yoga acts as a cleanser of the circulatory system and tones the entire cardiovascular system.Yoga increases overall lung capacity.Yoga stimulates digestion and healthy eliminative function.Yoga can be used to cleanse the GI tract.Yoga is a balancing tonic for glandular flow and stimulates Thyroid function and the Pituitary.Yoga increases nerve energy pathways throughout the body, balances the cerebral-spinal fluids, and releases impingement pressure on nerves.Yoga balances the right and left-brain thinking capacity, increases conscious awareness, and concentratio…

Great Gunas!

If you just saw the title of this post you might have thought to yourself, what in the world does gunas mean? Lucky for you I'm going to share a little about the gunas today!

In yoga terms the gunas are "the three ways that Prakriti (Shakti) manifests herself into the physical." In simple terms as it relates to yoga you can consider the gunas as a way to describe the energy of the poses or series of poses. I really liked this description in my yoga teacher training, YTT, manual "the gunas relate to lines of energy, edges of practice, as well as the struggle and intention in each particular pose."

First up is the guna rajas. Rajas is the forward/backward motion you would experience in a lunge or downward dog. Rajasic movement is dynamic, insistent, and passionate. In yoga it's typically the movement in and out of the poses. Rajasic emotions are anger, willfulness, and manipulation and can include participating in something excessively, often to the point o…

Three Tips for Beginning a Yoga Practice

What do you think of when you hear the word yoga? Does it bring to mind pictures of hipster types in tight yoga pants drinking kale smoothies while bending their bodies in ways that make no sense? Or do you have visions of sweaty hot yoga classes where you're told to chaturanga and you don't even know what that means? Hopefully you hear yoga and think peace, reflection, healing, or another positive description because it can be all those things and more.

I always thought of yoga as a something fun to do because I was pretty flexible and for me it was enjoyable. As I've gotten older I've realized that yoga isn't the most welcoming type of exercise for some people for a variety of reasons so I wanted to share my thoughts on starting a yoga practice. I personally  have taken classes in gym/studio settings, at peoples homes, done videos and online practices, and even taken part in school based community courses. I'm not the expert on all things yoga but these are …

Why Yoga?

Why yoga? Some might say it's the type of thing only tree-hugging, vegan, hipster types do. Others might say it's only for the really fit and flexible. It's even possible some may think yoga is a spiritual practice that conflicts with religion. I want to tell you it could be all of these things but for me it's not.

Yoga for me creates the space where I can accept myself for everything I am. The mistakes. The good times. The bad times. The fit times. The fat times. The smart decisions. The learning opportunities. Everything.
After I had my first baby, Russell, I didn't realize it but I was surrounded by the cloud of postpartum depression. I told myself I was just tired, sleep deprived, and that things would be fine. I had a job. I was making things work. I felt like eventually things would get better. I went so long that I never realized something was wrong until I rediscovered yoga and found things could feel different.

The funny thing is growing up I was always the…

A New Story

WOW! Again, it's been quite a while since I last posted but there will be a fun flurry of activity in the next few weeks as I work to finish up my yoga teacher training. I went into my training really thinking I would knock it out right away and start teaching yoga on the side. I felt I'd work hard and eventually quit working to teach yoga and take care of our kids. Then I got pregnant with Kira and because of a whole lot of change in our lives it felt like that path was no longer the path that was going to serve me and our family.

I've been meditating for 60 days in a row now and this quote came up a couple days ago. It sums up how I feel about how things are changing. On some fronts I feel I was holding on to an ideal from when I first started my yoga teacher training but now I feel the Universe has been taking me on another path.

I've been studying my beautiful yoga manual and remembering all the wonderful things we learned in person and through the videos Syl offe…