7.31.2008

Green Yoga

It seems like green has reached a tipping point. I hear this word so often lately. What is "green"? Well, grass is green, and so are trees. So it has something to do with nature, hmmm. I like nature, really I love it. Since I was a little kid living by a lake outside of town, it has been delightful. Tadpoles, crawdads, skeletons and petri dishes peppered my childhood. Most people do love it, don't they? Unfortunately some children today are losing touch with backyards rapidly, some even fear the great outdoors. Richard Louv writes about this distressing trend in his book, Last Child in the Woods.
As I contemplate my garden outside, I think of those pesky mosquitos and how I wish they weren't biting me. But that is the point, isn't it, that every part of nature has a niche, and therefore has value. We can't decide what stays and goes. These elfin arthropods feed a lot of birds and spiders, which help control other insect populations. So, what can we really do to preserve and protect our green lady? Reuse, reinvent, recycle, recreate, reap the benefits of mother nature without harming her. Are you wondering what this has to do with yoga yet?
Well, quite a bit actually, according to Georg and Brenda Feuerstein. They wrote the book, Green Yoga. In fact, there is an entire Green Yoga Association. Their description in the link is a fascinating analogy between yoga and the earth itself. This reminds me of the biology-based theory that treats the world as a living being, most commonly known as The Gaia Hypothesis. It was first introduced by James Lovelock (an independent research scientist who had done work at NASA) in the 60s. This is a thought provoking idea that has support world-wide.
Honestly, what I can say in my experience is that yoga is a method that builds respect and trust, in and out. We must listen to our body, as we honor and accept what it can handle. Someone that has done a headstand (or several other poses as well) knows this delicate line that exists in yoga, between exertion and simplicity. Much like this, we can realize the world exists in such a fragile balance. It seems to follow that trust and respect will serve to strengthen earth, and a lack of listening will do the opposite.
If you're interested in Kansas City's local movement, you should definitely check out the newly renovated Sandstone Amphitheatre. They have torn out the seats so every concert-goer is on the same page. The folks out there are recycling, rewarding carpooling, and have a slew of other ideas to make it eco-friendly. I plan to enjoy this green glow as we watch a concert there coming up in August. I hope you'll check it out too!
~~Kat



7.27.2008

gone til September

Hello everyone, I hope this message finds you well. September is just around the corner and with it comes the beginning of the academic year. You may not know that September is National Honey Month. You can check our information about honey here. In addition, it would be a lovely time to make a visit to your favorite local farmer's market, or perhaps an herb shop. Missouri has a wonderful place to try if you're considering a weekend trip - Jim Long's Herb Shop. I will be teaching yoga in September, probably in a couple of places and locations. If you're interested in joining, just send me an email at klmarchin@hotmail.com. We will be meeting either Mondays or Wednesdays at Barefoot Fitness Studio, and Tuesdays at Jiva Studio.

7.25.2008

September Yoga Class

I am writing to see if you are interested in participating in a weekly yoga class, starting the second week in September. I am Level 1 Certified through YogaFit as an instructor (www.yogafit.com). I will be taking Level 2 and Prenatal classes coming up in September so I will have some new and exciting poses for you!

The class would meet either Monday or Wednesday evenings, from 6:30 to 7:30 pm and the location is the Barefoot Fitness Studio, located in Prairie Village, KS. It is near 75th and Mission. Emily Morris is the owner of this house/studio, where she has created a wonderful yoga space. You can check out her blog at: http://emily-morris.blogspot.com and see pictures of the studio there. The cost would be 40 dollars. Please let me know if you are interested, and if so, which night would be best, Monday or Wednesday. Please share if you have any suggestions, questions or comments. No previous yoga experience necessary! This class would continue on a monthly basis, depending on interest.

7.20.2008

What is Yoga?

Most people have heard of yoga, and have formed an idea of what they think it is. One yoga expert (Judith Hanson Lasater) shares her views about yoga and potential benefits here:

For Beginners:
The Benefits of Yoga Practice

There is an old story in the ancient literature of India about a student attempting in vain to describe the taste of a mango. Listening to the futile words, the teacher shakes his head, smiles, and picking up a ripe luscious mango, bites into it. Writing about the benefits of hatha yoga is a little like this. If you practice poses, breathing and relaxation, no words are necessary because you "have tasted the mango." If you haven't tried a yoga class, words are probably not powerful enough by themselves to convince you. Experience, as the wise tell us, is the only true teacher.

While there has been some scientific documentation of the benefits of yoga, what is more important to consider about yoga are the responses of those who have practiced. Virtually without variation, yoga students will tell you that they feel better after a class, more relaxed, more centered. Students often report that headaches, back pain, anxiety, menstrual cramps and stress have changed or vanished. In more rare cases, students who have been trying to have a baby find they get good news at the doctor's office, others claim that the hip pain of decades' duration has vanished. Some people say they sleep through the night regularly for the first time in their lives. In more than one case, students have banished carpal tunnel syndrome, avoided surgery and generally found new balance and harmony in their lives. Whether these beneficial changes are related to an overall improvement in health and well-being or are due to a specific yoga pose, these healthy changes are deeply appreciated by yoga students.


What can you expect when you start to practice yoga? First, you will probably notice an increase in overall flexibility; your muscles will gradually begin to release tension and tightness. Where else does "tension" live in our bodies but in our muscles? When your muscles relax, as they do during a massage or after taking a yoga class, this muscular relaxation will be interpreted as a generalized reduction in tension and mental stress. Additionally, you may even find that you can bend over and touch the floor with your knees straight, which the average 30-year-old cannot do!


I'm curious about what you all feel are the benefits you have received from yoga. Feel free to post your comments here!
~~Kat

7.18.2008

Summer Sparkler!

Wow! It's been a while since I've visited Blog-Landia. Are you still out there my friends?? Now I'm a mom times two!! Can you be...