Posts Tagged ‘yoga’

Headstands… totally do-able


…with practice.

In class I usually will offer a headstand or two but I’ve found that some people might shy away from this pose. Salamba Sirsasana (Sanskrit name) offers many benefits that can help your body and mind. (I do want to point on that if you are pregnant,  have high blood pressure, or glaucoma headstand might not be the best option for you.)

Support headstands can be best achieved by starting in dolphin, with your forearms on the mat and hands interlaced. Once you have walked your feet in as close to your head as you can, bring you legs together, engage your core, and slowly bring both feet up together. Here are some key things to remember in headstand: 1- more pressure should be on your arms and shoulders then on your neck and head. 2-allowing your breath to flow freely is always recommended and 3- have fun, don’t take headstand too serious and smile.

Yoga Journal has a good breakdown of all things headstand at their web page.

Falling is a part of yoga too, so don’t be discouraged or frustrated, all things come in time and with practice!

I wanted to thank everyone on Facebook for “liking” my status on Zobha‘s page. Thanks to everyone I will be heading to the Yoga Journal Conference and taking some AMAZING classes with great teachers. I cannot wait to share it with everyone!

Namaste.

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the Edge.


I’m sure you’ve heard teachers say don’t go past your edge, or meet your edge, or something about an edge…. but what the hell is your ‘edge’?
Your edge is the spot that you feel like your doing something different but your not stepping over the boundary into a free fall to Hurtville. Your breath might be a bit shallower and your strength will usually be challenged. This is an opportunity to improve your practice, but it also comes with the hard part…stepping back. Inner reflection can allow yourself to take the ego out the the pose and come back to your mat with awareness; stepping back and knowing you have taken care of yourself, mind and body.

 

For example, when your in your side plank, hips high off the ground, attempting to lift your top leg and your starting to feel pain in your wrist, you’re at your edge and might want to take a variation to the pose.
I feel most people might not want to do this though. Your starting to feel the pain but not the good ‘i’m strengthening my muscles’ pain, but ‘I’m tearing joints’ pain You might think that by pushing through the pain no one in class will think you can’t do the asana or its only 5 more breaths…..
A strong sense if self will let your body know when you should back off that edge (please don’t jump) and keep yourself safe so you can come back to the next class!

And keep in mind, everyone is in class for different reason and its usually not to look at you! Yoga can offer so many benefits for those who are willing to both put the time and effort in, while (most importantly) looking inward to become better aware of your sense of self.

Yes I know he’s sayin ‘ledge’ but once I thought of the song I just couldn’t get it out of my head!

New Bedford has it all!


Moby Dick's Tale!

This week New Bedford was named one of 2011 Dozen Distinctive Destinations! Vote for NB HERE!

They mention all the awesome things that are available to us in the area, but here is a list of cool things that you may or may not be aware of that just adds to the splendor of New Bedford!

Overhead Arts: Aerial Circus classes right in our own city! http://overheadarts.net

New Bedford Half Marathon: Right around the corner and also Downtown NB Inc. does the Restaurant Run the same day! newbedfordhalfmarathon.com

aHA! Night: FREE arts & culture event which takes place the 2nd Thursday of every month in Downtown NB. ahanewbedford.org

And of COURSE; yoga!

You can always come visit me! or here is some other studios that are in New Bedford:

In love and Light Yoga http://www.inloveandlightyoga.com

Anjali Yoga and Wellness http://www.anjaliyogaandwellness.com

I know there are yoga classes held at most gyms as well. There are also LOADS of teachers and more studios in the area but for now I’m sticking to the New Bedford Theme.

Feel free to contact me if you know of anymore cool things and I’ll be sure to list them!

Yoga style #2… Vinyasa


Let’s dive into the wonderful world of Vinyasa yoga!

Vinyasa is sequential movement that interlinks postures to form a continuous flow. It creates a movement meditation that reveals all forms as being impermanent and for this reason are not held on to.

Most yoga styles focus on the breath and this style just takes this idea and uses it in a flow to create a practice. A vinyasa sequence would be something like a Sun Salutation.  Here is a video that I found that explains in depth a sun salutation. [howcast url=’http://www.howcast.com/videos/249-How-To-Do-a-Basic-Sun-Salutation’ height=’240′ width=’360′] The guy might be a little too touchy, but his narration is good and detailed.

Following your breath to the movement is beneficial for many reasons. It can be used to reduce stress, improve lung capacity, and so much more, but that’s a whole new post. For now just follow your breath and hope to see you on the mat.

Namaste.

Yoga Benefit!


Hey yogis,
We are putting together a yoga class/benefit for The Hoyt Foundation! Here is the information:

Yoga for a Cause

Please join us in raising awareness and donations for Team Hoyt!

The Hoyt Foundation strives to help those who are physically disabled become active members of

the community.

February 5th, 2011 10:30 AM (2 sessions if first fills)

At Synergy Physical Therapy. (Route 6 in Fairhaven, behind Mermaids)

$10 Donation (minimum), please sign up by contacting:

Lindsay Wilkinson @  LindsayLWilkinson@gmail.com

Pam Teves @ southcoastyoga@gmail.com

Dressing up….


…for yoga.

So there are a huge amount of ‘yoga apparel’ companies out there and every turn there seems to be a new company starting but are these clothes really necessary to practice? Not at all (but definitely great to support local business!)

I’ve had many people ask me what they should wear to class, men and women, so here are a couple of things to keep in mind when taking a class:

1- Downward dogs are putting you almost upside-down. A tight(er) fitting shirt, or a simple tuck could avoid an awkward flashing or strange maneuver to fix it.

2- Leg lifts, lunges, and splits can all be part of class, if you going to wear shorts keep in mind the length and also if they are loose-fitting (a weird pose might just create a straight shot up your shorts) It might be comfortable to wear a spandex type of shorts or if that is not comfortable, maybe a looser fitting pair over them.

3- Socks aren’t necessary and actually might be a bad idea if it is causing slipping on your mat. If you really want to wear socks, there are some available with grip on the bottom to help you hold poses.

Mostly, just be comfortable and able to move freely! If you feel weird without any accessories don’t forget your [reusable] water bottle and, or course, your mat!

Theory


Many people do yoga and don’t realize the long-standing traditions that are associated with it. Depending on the type of yoga that you choose to participate with there are backgrounds to reach a  deeper practice. Overall there  are some basic that are part of all yoga practices.

The Yamas and Niyamas are part of Patanjali’s yoga sutras of Ashtanga yoga. Yoga sutras are one of the fundamental texts that this yoga stems from. The yamas are ways that you try to live your life outwards. And the Niyamas are inward disciplines that one can use to create a better sense of self. There are a total of ten of these Yamas and Niyamas. Below is the list of all of them and their definitions:

Yama:   Precepts of Social Discipline

    Ahimsa — Non-violence.   Not harming other people or other sentient beings.   Not harming oneself or environment.

Satya — Truthfulness.  Not intending to deceive others in our thoughts, as well as our words and actions

    Asteya — Non-stealing.   Not taking that which is not given.

    Brahmacarya — Using your life force meaningfully.   The spirit of this precept is conservation of energy for the purpose of spiritual practice.   This includes not only sexual restraint, but protecting our energy for instance by avoiding endless chattering with no clear purpose.

    Aparigraha — Abstention from greed.     Not coveting that which is not ours.   Avoidance of unnecessary acquisition of objects not essential to maintaining life or spiritual study.

    Niyama:   Precepts of individual Discipline

    Sauca — Cleanliness.   Not only external cleanliness of the body, but attending to internal cleanliness such as avoiding the impurities of anger and egoism.   Moderation in diet.

    Santosa — Contentment.   Not spiritual complacency, but acceptance of the external situation we are allotted in this life.

    Tapas — Perserverance.   Deep commitment to our yoga practice.

    Svadhyaya — Self-study.   Spiritual self-education.

Isvara pranidhana — Surrender of the self to God.   Acknowledgment that there is a higher principle in the universe than one’s own small self.  Modesty.   Humility.

Next time you practice think of one of these ideas and use it on your practice and then work on using it off your mat. But how do all of these relate to practicing yoga? Well not all of them do, so choose one that does. For example: Aparigraha – Not coveting that which is not ours. This can be done during practice by not looking at others practicing and wanting to have a practice like theirs, but taking others out of your practice you bring the attention back to yourself.
This is just one lesson in yoga, but hopefully you can use it in your practice and become more comfortable with yourself on and off the mat.

Namaste!