All posts tagged: yoga community

Review: Best Yoga Books (for yoga addicts like you)

I collect two things in life: books and music. And according to my bank account, I apparently go a little overboard with my obsession for both. I am unrepentant. I am without question a book fanatic/literarazzi/reader-of-all-the-things. I don’t know about you, but any location that houses books in a happy place: libraries, used bookstores, Barnes and Noble, that random pop up store down the street, etc etc etc. I’m not kidding when I say I read at least a book or two a week. I will happily turn down social engagements to snuggle up with a my fat cat and a book. HEAVEN IS A PLACE ON EARTH—called my sofaaaaaaaa. Anyway, now that we all know the real reason I’m sometimes a terrible friend (those books aren’t gonna read themselves, people), I wanted to share with you several that I’ve found really beneficial to my yoga practice. Inspirational and philosophical books are pretty easy to come across, but books with a technical focus are often difficult to find. I’ve curated several gems along the way, and they’ve made …

Review of the Dharma Wheel

Yoga falls into that rare exercise category of “no equipment needed.” Other than a mat, all that’s needed is you, yourself, and your open heart. Maybe it’s our complex day to day lives that push us towards making everything more complicated than it needs to be, but sometimes yoga just seems…too simple. Surely I need more gadgets, gizmos a plenty, and at bare minimum some whozits and whatzits galore. (AND YES. I so just referenced The Little Mermaid, thank you fellow nerds and red haired children alike for knowing that.) Back to the point at hand: yoga. I find myself looking for ways to “add on” to my yoga practice. Aren’t there props that I need? Shouldn’t I be investing in more training apps that I may or may not use? I really will do a handstand better if I buy super expensive pants…right? Part of me still feels disbelief at how simple yoga is, and yet how transfiguring it’s proven to be for millions of people, including myself. Now, when I see the random belles …

Give Me All the Upside Downs (Inversions!)

I love inversions. I mean, honestly I’m like a little monkey when it comes to certain asanas. While inversions bring both levity and varity to your flow, they also build upper body strength. This is a major plus, since a great deal of our yoga work is more from the core down.  In addition to being (in my oh so humble opinion) ridiculously fun, inversions have major health benefits.To clarify, an inversion is any asana (pose) where the head is below the heart. Here are just a small handful of the significant health benefits of inversions: 1. Reverses blood flow and improves circulation: this in itself is a huge heart-helper, because the heart spends all day long pumping blood against gravity to get blood to the body’s limbs. By getting yourself upside down, it actually takes strain off the heart. 2. Gives a great boost the the immune system: going upside-down allow lymph to move easily through the lymph nodes, picking up toxins and bacteria and cleaning out the body. The lymph system is an …

(Guest Post) My Beautiful Journey: the Healing Power of Yoga

The Yoga Community is truly an amazing source of inspiration and encouragement. Over and over, I see how people’s lives have been changed for the better by yoga. It’s not specifically the asanas that bring the change, but the healing mentality that comes with the asanas. Yoga allows us to find great inner peace, and a connection to God by clearing a path through our minds and chipping away the parts of us that keep us from fully realizing healing. There are so many powerful stories out there, and I was really moved by my friend KaSandra’s story. She’s an incredibly beautiful, insanely talented yogini. Her body is enviably fit and strong, and can do poses that most people would only dream of trying. To see her now, you would never know that this lovely woman has been through hell and back, and that she nearly killed herself through a severe eating disorder. You wouldn’t guess this, because she brings such strength, soul and the message of grace to her practice today. She is one …

Thankfulness & Other Thoughts

We often talk of gratitude and contentment, but it’s sometimes harder to live out. Out of all the holidays, Thanksgiving is one of my favorites, because it’s dedicated entirely to being thankful for what we have, while realizing contentment despite what we do not have. Thankfulness has nothing to do with the contents of our lives and everything to do with the condition of our hearts. Would you take this challenge with me? Let us practice deep contentment for what we have, keeping our focus off of materialism and turning it towards things much less tangible but more valuable. I also set the intention on and off the mat to nurture my sense of joyful gratitude. Thankfulness is not playing a Pollyanna “Glad Game” and merely finding things to be happy about each day, or ignoring the bad. It is a state of the heart, in which we acknowledge the pain, disappointments, and hard situations we face and say, “Even so, I choose joy. I choose to recognize that nothing is permanent, including this hard time, …