Monday, August 1, 2016

July pose : side crow

parsva bakasana
How to do it:
1. Starting with your feet together, bend your knees deeply sitting back on your heels (come onto the balls of your feet)
2. Staying focused with your balance, bring your left elbow to the outside of your right knee. Place both of your hands flat on the floor shoulder-width apart.
3. Keep your left elbow hugging close to your right knee as you begin to lift the hips and shift them slightly to the left
4. Gaze forward and start to bend your elbows to a 90 degree angle (thing chaturanga arms) as you lift your feet off the ground.
5. Keep extending your heart forward, shoulders back, and press down through your palms.

Hold for 5 deep breaths, then slowly lower your feet and repeat on the other side.

Benefits:

  • Strengthens the arms, wrists and shoulders
  • Improves balance and focus
  • Tones the belly 

Thursday, June 30, 2016

june pose: cow face

Gomukhasana 
How to do it:
1. Start sitting down with your legs extended out in front of you
2. Bend your right knee over your left and bring your foot to the outside of your left hip. Then place your left foot to the outside of your right hip, stacking both of your knees
3. Sit evenly on both sitting bones.
4. Raise your right arm in the air and bend your elbow placing the palm of your hand below your neck.
5. Rotate your left arm behind you, palm facing away from you and try to clasp both right and left fingers together. (modification: use a strap)
6. Firm your shoulder blades against your back ribs and lift your chest.

Stay and breathe deeply for one minute. Then release and switch legs and arms. 

Benefits:

  • Stretches the hips, shoulders, ankles, armpits and chest. 
  • Lengthens and opens both sides of the body. 
  • Helps maintain good posture. 




Tuesday, May 31, 2016

may pose: lizard (dog optional)

Utthan Pristhasana
How to do it:
1. Start in a lunge with your right foot forward.
2. Bring both hands on the inside of your right foot, then start to walk your right foot out towards the edge of your mat (keeping your foot pointing forward)
3. Keep the length in your spine and reach your heart forward
4. Stay strong with your back leg and push back through your right heel.

*variations: back knee can come to the ground and bring hands or forearms to a block

Stay for 5-10 breaths and switch sides

Benefits:

  • Stretches and opens the hips
  • Strengthens the legs
  • Improves flexibility 

Friday, April 8, 2016

april 8, 2016 - international kids' yoga day!

Today marks the first annual kids' yoga day! I've been so blessed over the years to meet and teach so many wonderful children and this is a tribute to them.

This month I teamed up with Savvy Sassy Moms to bring awareness to parents and teachers to incorporate yoga into their child's life.

Take a moment and do your favourite pose with your little ones :)

Namaste xo

 
 
 

Thursday, March 31, 2016

march pose: low lunge quad stretch

anjaneyasana variation
How to do it:
1. Start standing at the top of your mat with your hands on your hips.
2. Step your left foot back, coming into a lunge with your right knee stacked directly over your right ankle
3. Bring your hands to the ground and drop your left knee down
4. Reach back with your left hand to grab your left foot. To modify, you may use a strap. For support, you can place a towel/blanket under your left knee.
5. To go deeper, reach both hands to your left foot and come upright.

Keep a steady gaze forward, breathe deeply and hold for 5-10 breaths.
Switch sides

Benefits:

  • Stretches your quadriceps
  • Releases tension in your hips
  • Strengthens your knees 


Friday, February 26, 2016

february pose: office lunge

alanasana variation
Our offices just went through major renovations and our desks are now programmable 'work center" stations which allow them to move up and down to the height we desire. This is great for the yogini like me since I like to be moving all the time! Sitting all day in a chair can cause a lot of strain on the body especially the low back, neck and shoulders. If you have the time, get up often and move your legs.

Here is a twist on a lunge:


How to do it:
1. Start standing in mountain pose.
2. Bring your hands to your hips and step back with your left foot coming into a lunge
3. Bend your right knee until it stacks directly over your ankle.
4. Keep your back leg strong, pushing back through your heel and lift up from your thigh
5. Engage your core, relax the shoulders and breathe deeply in and out through your nose.


Hold for 5-10 breaths then step your left foot forward and switch legs

Benefits:
  • Better balance and posture
  • Strengthens the legs
  • Improves hip flexibility


Sunday, January 31, 2016

january pose: one-legged chaturanga

How to do it:

1. Start in plank. Bring your shoulders stacked right over your wrists and push back through your heels.
2. Reach the crown of your head forward and keep one straight line with your body. 
3. On an inhale, raise your right leg keeping your hips squared. 
4. As you exhale, shift forward and lower down halfway to a four-limbed staff pose (chaturanga)

Hug your elbows close to your side body, stay connected to your core and breathe deeply. You may lower down all the way onto your belly or push back up to plank. Repeat with your left leg. 

Benefits:
  • Strengthens arms, shoulders and legs
  • Develops core stability 
  • Teaches proper alignment and prepares you for inversions and arm balances