Showing posts from June, 2009

Gentle Yoga

How many times do we focus so intently on something that we absorb tension into the body? We might be typing, painting, knitting, carrying bags, or maybe just having a tough conversation. I think this happens all the time and often without us even realizing it.

What is gentle yoga? Well our usual weekly class is a practice of Hatha Yoga, with a vinyasa (and flowing) component as well. In gentle yoga, the pace of class can slow down, leading to a very thoughtful approach to the postures, and perhaps a chance to work on our alignment, both mentally and physically. We may flow less, and hold each asana for more breaths.

Especially during the hot summer season, you may wish to work on stilling your energy, and cooling ourselves down through more respect given to the yin aspect of yoga is possible. The calmness, steady breathing, and peace of holding still in space and time should not be underestimated. This practice can energize us without overheating, and sooth us into letting go of any t…

Ahimsa and DAD

In yoga, most of us start with exposure to the asanas, the actual physical poses and postures that we move through during class. Interestingly, if you continue to explore yoga, you arrive at a place where you discover some of the philosophy behind it, and this can be so fascinating as we move through life and try to understand the complex and at times difficult experiences we are having.

Some of the yamas have particularly been bubbling to the surface of my mind in the last few days, as I go through the extremely difficult experience of losing my dad. One of these is ahimsa and thinking of all the yamas, I think my dad reminds me of this concept most. This word means the absense of cruelty and the strong force of compassion. It can mean "pure love" and selfless service. He was very compassionate, and I always felt that while he was very strong, his spirit had such a gentle component. He could barely bear to hear any of us talk about a scratch or scrape without wincing, our pa…

Super Superfoods

Steven G. Pratt, MD and Kathy Matthews have coauthored a wonderful book, Superfoods, Rx. Click on the title to visit their wonderful web page, which lists 25 different Superfoods, the list is growing! The unique and unifying factor to these foods is that they can help to prevent or reverse aging and related diseases (according to research), and are simultaneously nutrient rich and mostly low calorie. Each has its own special properties and niche in our health. We probably can't eat them all every day and that's okay! Just pick your favorites and add them in as a healthy snack or meal as often as you can. Your body and mind will thank you! (Especially for that dark chocolate ;) )

The superfoods include:
Dark Chocolate
Dried SuperFruits
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Low Fat Yogurt
Wild Salmon


Recent Reflections

Just a few random thoughts from me recently about life and yoga. Honestly life is so unexpected. A good person I know from college is very sick. One friend of mine is getting married, moving across the country and starting grad school - so many lovely things all at once! Another friend recently took the time off work to lunch with her dear grandmother who is now going through some really serious health issues. A woman I work with helped her mom through surgery, though it was fine, and now some complications are arising. It really just underlines something I really have learned well in my life, but forget from time to time. If there's something you really wanna do, plan it now. Buy and wear that swimsuit, make that call, whatever it is, don't wait too long. Tomorrow is farther away that we expect sometimes, in fact, things change and then it's out of our grasp for good.

Today I listened to a lecture by an engineer. Yoga has really increased my awareness of not only my own br…

Yoga Mamas say: "Stand UP!"

Turns out, moms know best when it comes to our spines! Here are some thoughts about posture, and how to work on improving ours ours. In particular many of us tend to round our shoulders forward, and our head moves forward as well, putting extra pressure on the upper back and the muscles there. Thanks to YogaJournal and Julie Gudmestad for the following information! For the entire article, click here!
Better Posture 101 Your mom was right: You'll look better and feel great if you stop slouching and stand up straight. Yoga can help you do just that—in a way that honors your spine's natural curves. Here's a guide to assessing and improving your posture. By Julie Gudmestad POSTURE PRINCIPLES To create great alignment for your body, I recommend a three-part strategy. First, build awareness by assessing your posture and your lifestyle. Next, create a yoga prescription for your specific postural problem by incorporating a few simple poses into your regular practice. Fin…

The sixth month is here!

June. One of the most promising months of the year, in more ways than one! In the northern hemisphere, June contains the most longest days of sunlight. So slather on that sunscreen and let's go outside! The birth stone is a pearl, and the flower is a rose. Does any other month smell so sweet?

The name June (Juno) comes from Hera, the Goddess of Marriage and Households, so this is a lovely time to notice many wedding occurring. From gardens to churches to Vegas, the numbers of unions are high this month! There are many fun celebration days in June, so read below to find a few that you might enjoy this week! This is courtesy of author Susan Wittig Albert via her monthly newsletter, All About Thyme!

June is National Iced Tea Month (Drink up!!)June 2: Today is the feast day of St. Elmo, the patron saint of sailors. June 3: St. Morand's Day, patron saint of vintners, wine growers, wine makers. June 4: Hug Your Cat Day. Somewhere, a cat is waiting for a hug. Don't disappoint her…