Posts Tagged asana

Sleep Like a Baby… Yoga for Better Sleep

We’ve all heard that getting adequate sleep is crucial to our overall health and well-being. Just one night of insufficient sleep can lead to moodiness, poor mental clarity and focus, and low physical energy. A prolonged pattern of sleep deprivation can even put us at a greater risk for certain diseases and health disorders.

As a new mom, I am more aware than ever of the rejuvenating, restoring bliss that is a good night’s sleep. One way I make the most of the precious hours of sleep I get is to take a few moments before bedtime to practice yoga postures that promote healthy, restful sleep. Here are a few of my favorites that can be done in the comfort of your bed!…

Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclined Bound Angle): This is my absolute favorite! I love this asana as a cool down during my classes, and it is a great way to wind down from your day as well. You can even use the pillows from your bed to enjoy a restorative version of the posture. It not only stretches the hips and groin area, which are areas where many of us hold tightness and tension, but it relaxes the mind and the sympathetic nervous system and promotes balance throughout the entire body. I find that placing one hand on the heart and the other on the abdomen is especially soothing. With the hands in place, focus on the rise and fall of the chest and abdomen as you breathe. And watch yourself drift into deeper and deeper relaxation…
Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend): This asana is very calming for the central nervous system. It reduces anxiety, helping you to unwind. Physically, it stretches nearly all of the back body, from the Achille’s tendon into the upper back. For this reason, allow yourself to ease into the posture and watch the body open as you remain in the forward fold. Again, focus on the breathing for a deeper, more soothing experience of the asana- growing longer and more spacious on the inhale and relaxing and melting on the exhale. You can use pillows for a supported, restorative version, placing them along your legs and folding onto them.
Balasana (Child’s Pose): Child’s pose is commonly known as a resting posture. It is where I instruct my students to go if they need to rest or recenter during class. It has additional benefits, though, including a gentle stretch for the lower back, hips, feet, and ankles and a relaxing effect for the neck and shoulders. Child’s pose is said to balance all seven of the subtle body’s main chakras, or energy centers, and calm the central nervous system. Again, pillows may be used as a prop if your forehead does not comfortably reach to the bed. Place a pillow between your knees and lay over it, turning the head to one side.
Viparita Karani (Legs Up The Wall Pose): This one only works if your bed is against a wall, but it is wonderfully relaxing if you are able to do it. Viparita Karani is essentially a very, very gentle version of shoulderstand. It comes with the benefits of an inversion without the exertion that most inversions require. Having the feet raised allows the bloodflow to move into the upper body, which is deeply rejuvenating. Use a folded blanket under the pelvis. This elevates the heart above the head, moving circulation into the head and helping you to relax.
Reclining Twists: Reclining, or supine, twists are a great way to stretch the back after a long day. The twisting action in the abdomen also aids digestion. If it feels okay for your neck, take your gaze in the opposite direction of the knees. This creates a spiral from the tailbone up to the crown of the head. If you have any neck sensitivity at all, keep your gaze either straight up or toward the same direction as the legs.

So, there you have it, my friends. Move through some or all of these asanas as you prepare for sleep and make the most of those hours you get. Gotta go now… time for a nap!

(Looking to get the gear to take sleepytime to the next level? Check out Casper mattresses… and thanks to them for inspiring this post!)

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New Weekly Class on Monday!

Create a solid foundation for your week with this hour-long yoga practice. A thorough, thoughtful warmup builds to an invigorating vinyasa sequence, with careful attention to breathing, alignment, and mind/body awareness. Finally, as class concludes, a cool down including restorative postures facilitates deep opening, relaxation, and rejuvenation. This class is appropriate for students of all levels of experience.

Hello, yoga lovers! Well, baby man is three months old now, and I am slowly regaining my strength and focus (hello, sleep deprivation!!…). The opportunity has arisen to begin teaching a weekly class on Monday evenings. I hope you will be to drop in and check it out!

Energize and Restore is a new weekly class at Ascension Holistic Healing Center in Bonsall, CA. It is a great little space, adjacent to a new age bookstore and cafe, next to the Bonsall Post Office on Highway 76.

This class will meet on Mondays at 6:30pm for one hour. The drop-in fee is $10, but class packages are also available. You can find more information about those here on Ascension’s website.

I’m so happy to have this opportunity to ease my way back into teaching again now that I am a momma of two. I hope that you join me and support this new adventure!

See you on the mat, my friends!!

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Yoga this week!!

Guess what??… December’s here!!! Can you believe it? We’ve officially arrived in the last month of 2013.

Fortunately, we are blessed and lucky enough here in Southern California to still have favorable weather for yoga at the beach. The last few Sundays have been absolutely gorgeous, and the view can’t be beat. We will be in action at the beach on Thursday at 9am and Sunday at 9:30am. Please bring a mat (and probably a towel for under your mat) if you plan to attend.

And the conditions are always warm and inviting at Black Sheep Yoga in Oceanside. I will be teaching Yoga 101 at Black Sheep on Wednesday at 10am and Sunday at 11am. Join me for an all-levels appropriate class that is built around mindfully practicing basic postures with careful attention given to alignment.

As Jason Crandell points out so astutely in my favorite quote of the week, “The best way to develop advanced postures is to practice simple, accessible postures with exquisite detail, attention and care. Basic poses will compound over time and allow you to do more challenging poses skillfully.” Start building those foundations with me this week, yoga lovers!

See you on the mat!

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Yoga this week!

Hello, friends and yoga lovers!

Another week, another opportunity to rock it on the mat with me! Several opportunities, actually… the first is tomorrow (Wednesday) at 10am at Black Sheep Yoga in Oceanside.

This is the schedule for the week:

♥ Wednesday, 10am – Yoga 101, Black Sheep Yoga
♥ Thursday, 9am – Yoga at the beach, details here
♥ Thursday, 6:30pm – All level flow, Black Sheep Yoga
♥ Friday, 12pm – The Rocket (heated vinyasa), Black Sheep Yoga
♥ Sunday, 9:30am – Yoga at the beach, details here
♥ Sunday, 11am – Yoga 101, Black Sheep Yoga

I hope that your week is off to a great start and that you can join me for a class or two to make it even better… see you on the mat!

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Yoga this week!

It’s November already! The Halloween decorations are down, and the holidays are fast approaching. What better way to stay centered and manage holiday stress than with yoga? Establish your holiday yoga foundation this week with me.

My first class this week will be on Wednesday at 10am at Black Sheep Yoga. I will be teaching Yoga 101, a foundational class with a strong emphasis on alignment.

I will also be teaching the following classes this week at Black Sheep:
♥ The Rocket (heated vinyasa), Friday at noon
♥ All level flow, Friday at 6pm
♥ Yoga 101, Sunday at 11am

…And believe it or not, we are still going strong at the beach! It’s actually supposed to be an overcast 80 degrees on Thursday. There will be an all level class at the beach on Thursday at 9am and Sunday at 9:30am.

That’s a whole lotta of yoga love, yoga lovers! I hope that you will join me for the party!

Happy November, and I’ll see you on the mat.

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Yoga this week!

Happy Tuesday, yoga lovers! I hope your week is off to a good start. Halloween is quickly approaching, but the weather is still beautiful and the skies are still sunny here on the coast. I will be teaching several classes this week- some at the beach and some at Black Sheep Yoga on Coast Highway- drop in for one (or all) of them and take your week to the next level 🙂

I will be at the beach teaching an all-level flow on Thursday at 9am and Sunday at 9:30am.

And I will be at the ever-awesome Black Sheep Yoga for the following classes this week:
-Yoga 101, Wednesday 10-11:15am
-All-level flow, Thursday 6:30-7:45pm
-The Rocket (heated), Friday 12-1pm
-All-level flow, Friday 6-7:15pm
-Yoga 101, Sunday 11-12:30pm

Please check out their website for additional details about location, pricing, etc.

There you have it, my friends. The only thing missing now is… you! See you on the mat!

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Yoga this week!

Happy hump day, yoga lovers!

I’m back in action tomorrow with yoga at the beach at 9am. We’ve been having a great time at the beach and being inspired by the sand and surf. Join us tomorrow morning to give it a try!

I will also be teaching my weekly heated class, The Rocket, at Black Sheep Yoga in Oceanside at noon on Friday. Jump on your mat, work up a sweat, and let go of the week in this hour-long recharge.

And at 6pm on Friday, I will be back at Black Sheep for a full moon yoga happy hour. What’s not to love about that?

Finally, I will be wrapping up the week at Black Sheep on Sunday with Yoga 101 at 11am. We will be taking the week off at Sunday yoga at the beach due to the Life Time Triathlon in Oceanside. Best of luck to all the iron men and women who will be competing!

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Yoga this week!!

We had a rain-out this morning at the beach, but I must admit… I was so, so happy for the rain yesterday. It had been quite a long time since we had had any significant rain here. So, thank you, Mother Nature, for the much needed shower.

As for the rest of the week, you will have several opportunities to rock it yoga-style with me. Tomorrow at noon, I will be teaching my weekly heated class (The Rocket) at Black Sheep Yoga. I believe the class description still says that this is a set sequence class, but you know me… we’ll be getting inspired and going with the flow instead 🙂

I am also teaching an all-levels flow tomorrow night at Black Sheep at 6pm.

And finally, I will be wrapping up the week with 2 classes on Sunday- an all-levels flow at the beach at 9:30am and Yoga 101 at Black Sheep from 11-12:30.

See you on the mat, yoga lovers!

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Yoga this week… new classes!

Hello friends and yoga lovers!

There are some exciting new changes to my teaching schedule beginning this week. Firstly, I have two new weekly classes at Black Sheep Yoga in Oceanside. I will be teaching The Rocket (a heated class) from 12-1 on Fridays and Yoga 101 from 11-12:30 on Sundays. Additionally, I will be subbing an all-levels flow class this week on Friday night (6-7:15). It’s a great space with a wonderful atmosphere. Please drop by if you have never been there and give one of my new classes a go!

Also, I will be teaching at the beach twice this week- Thursday at 9am and Sunday at 9:30am. Please note that the Sunday class has been changed going forward to accommodate the changes in my schedule. It will begin at 9:30 rather than 10, and it will be held at the beach rather than the park. I have gotten such great feedback about the Thursday classes at the beach, and so many of my students who are unable to attend during the week have been asking for a weekend class at the beach. I can’t wait to kick it off this weekend! Hope to see you there…

See you on the mat!

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Yoga this week!!

Yoga break, anyone?!

Who’s in?? I will be teaching tomorrow (Thursday) at 10am and Sunday at 10am.

The theme of the week is getting into those spots where we accumulate tightness and tension and unlock them with a focused, gentle yoga practice. Make it conscious and let it go!

See you on the mat!

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