Connecting with Community!

Connecting with Community!

Really fun Shiva Power class at Kula Yoga yesterday morning!!! I enjoy connecting with this community so much. There’s something really special about a community of like-minded people coming together. We are all helping each other along. Find your tribe. Like attracts like and same attracts same. Your energy affects everyone around you. Let your line shine brightly. Some days you will inspire the person next to you and help lift them up. Some days they will inspire you and help to lift you up. Push yourself to work a little harder and challenge yourself to go a little deeper. Go into the fire and stand your ground. You’re surrounded by friends. You’re surrounded by family. You’re not alone on this journey. Take it one step at a time. Breathe into it. Let’s keep moving forward. Thank you, Kula Yoga for letting me join and be a part of your community. Always grateful to spend time with you. Love sharing the teachings of my teachers and love practicing with you. It’s been a really fun week. Seeing how much some of you have grown so far this year is really exciting. I look forward to seeing you all again soon. Namaste

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Powerful Hip Opening Workshop!

Powerful Hip Opening Workshop!

We had a big hip opening workshop on Saturday at Kula Yoga in Port Orange. Thank you everyone for coming out to explore with me. I really enjoyed practicing with you and sharing some knowledge about how we can work with this area of the body.

Full range of motion in the hips will help protect the low back, the knees, create more balance in the body, and prepare the body to sit comfortably in seated meditation postures for pranayama or meditation practices.

We touched on a lot of additional things in this workshop too — from sequencing, to anatomy, to deeper philosophy and then tying these things all together. I love how each of these workshops goes in different directions depending on who is in the room and what they want to learn and focus on. This was a very open and receptive group and we got to cover a lot. Grateful to all of you for coming! 

This coming Saturday, January 26th, I’m leading another Hip Opening workshop in Orlando at Guruv Yoga. If you missed this week at Kula Yoga and you are in the Orlando area please join me there!

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Shiva Meditation Class at Kula Yoga.

Shiva Meditation Class at Kula Yoga.

Shiva Meditation class this morning at Kula Yoga in Port Orange! Powerful way to start the day.

Pranayama, yoga nidra, and seated meditation.

What is yoga?

The stopping of the movements of the mind. When the mind is quiet, in the stillness, you get to experience the true nature of your Self.

What’s left over in the stillness when for a moment the body, mind, thoughts and ego have disappeared?

You!

Our next Shiva Meditation class is tomorrow night at 5:30pm at Kula Yoga In Port Orange. Last one of the week! Hope to see you there.

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Deepening Backbends.

Deepening Backbends.

Lots of twisting in our warm up last night led us into some deep backbends.

My teacher, Dharma, always says, “3 is the bare minimum, 7 is better, and 10 is the best.” I usually shoot for 10 rounds of backbending in my own practice, and somewhere between 7-10 rounds of backbends in my classes.

The backbends are energizing! They lift us up! They help us to concentrate! And they also teach us to surrender. All of the intensity in the backbends brings your stuff to the surface — and then you get to practice letting it go.

We held a backbend pose recently with Dharma — when I was practicing with him in New York, for almost 40 breaths. At first, I kept fighting and pushing and resisting — but, finally, I just let go. I was still breathing, still in the pose, but not resisting — and something opened up for me. It took that really long hold for me to work through all that stuff that was coming up, all the fear and resistance and fighting. Sometimes you just have to hold the poses longer than you want to.

I love working with students on the full bow pose with the mama Kuka straps. Great work last night and this morning everyone! Thank you for your practice. Hard to make the transition to the full bow — but if you use the different length straps it’s not such a big jump. Over time you can get there. Slowly, one step at a time — and all is coming.

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Hot and Sweaty Shive Power Class in Port Orange

Hot and Sweaty Shive Power Class in Port Orange

Kicked things off at Kula Yoga Port Orange yesterday with a hot and sweaty Shiva Power class. I’ll be back at the Port Orange studio this morning at 9am for a Shiva Meditation class and at New Smyrna tonight at 6pm for a Shiva Power class. Look forward to seeing you there. Thank you to everyone who came to practice yesterday. Such an open and receptive group. 

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A lot of stuff bubbles to the surface when you are in the fire.

A lot of stuff bubbles to the surface when you are in the fire.

This first picture is of a hip flexor stretch that I love. If your hip flexors are tight — your low back is going to suffer when you backbend. Monkey Pose and Hanuman variations are great to open the hip flexors. And variations of Lying Down Kneeling Warrior, like this one — using the block. And the Backbends themselves will open the hip flexors as well. Use your core to stabilize the low back, lengthen the spine, and help the hip flexors release.

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It's all unfolding perfectly.

It's all unfolding perfectly.

Our last day of practice together at Kula Yoga this past weekend! Shiva Yoga® Maha Sadhana — honoring our teachers and celebrating our practice. Lots of partner yoga! What a fun afternoon and way to end a long weekend of practice together. Everybody was tired and sore and still brought such a positive attitude and still practiced really hard. So grateful to this group! I find I rarely am feeling “perfect” when I get on my mat. Something is always sore and I’m often tired. Yoga has taught me to show up anyway and do my best. You can move from darkness to light. It’s just a choice. The conditions will never be perfect. Just show up anyway and do your best and don’t worry about the results. Just breathe into whatever comes your way. And have faith that it’s all unfolding perfectly.

 

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The Camel Pose.

The Camel Pose.

Backbending Workshop! The Camel Pose is a great intermediate backbend. Once your hands can slide down to the soles of your feet, you are definitely ready for the first stage of the Full King Pigeon. Don’t forget to hug your inner thighs in and push them back while you are pushing your hips forward. Engage your core while you push your heart up and try to extend your spine. And make sure not to strain your neck. The cervical spine has lots of flexibility and a huge range of motion. Think about how imbalance leads to more imbalance. We want to stabilize areas that are vulnerable and open areas where there isn’t a lot of movement or full range of motion. 

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