10/30/17 Weekly topic: The 2nd limb of Yoga

Eight limbs of yoga

Saucha (Cleanliness/purity)- choice of things as pure food, pure speech, cleanliness of the body inside and out.

Santosha (Contentment)- “Be happy in the moment, that’s enough. Each moment is all we need, not more.” — Mother Teresa

Tapas (Heat, Perseverance)- develop a fire, a heat inside, a burning desire to better ourselves.

Svadhyaya (Study of One’s Self)-When we know ourselves, we can know our needs, and put in place behaviors to fill our needs.

Ishvara pranidhana (Surrender to the Divine)- is acting as best we can, and then relinquishing all attachment to the outcome of our actions, give up our egotistical illusion that we know best.

2/19/18 Week Six: Ajna Chakra (Third Eye)

Ajna Chakra (Third Eye)- Ajna is positioned on the brow in between the eyebrows and slightly above. The third eye is often called the command center and controls how we create and perceive life, art and our environment.  When someone says they have a “gut feeling” about something, we often refer to that as intuition, which is actually coming from the Ajna chakra. The element related with the Thrid Eye Chakra is Light and color connected to Ajna is deep blue.  Signs of excessiveness in our third eye we notice headaches, nightmares, difficulty focusing. Signs of blockages in our third eye include lack of imagination, lack of memory, denial and eye issues.

Poses to assist with blockages include daily meditation with visualization practice and identifying our perception verses our intuition

Poses to assist with excessiveness include daily meditation with focus and intent on pranayama (breath work)

Pose of the week 4/2/14

Side Crow-

Why would I want to do that?

  • Benefits your balance practice
  • Teaches patience
  • Tones back and abs
  • Strengthens wrists and forearms
  • Increases stamina
  • It’s fun and looks neat.


Where do I begin?

  • Side bends and twist to get the spine loose
  • Chair twists with the elbow hooked
  • Pelvic tilts to assist with engaging all parts of the core
  • Chaturanga holds


That’s awesome! How do I do that?

  • Come to class!
  • Start in twisted chair to the left, then shift your weight over to the left side and place both hands on the floor about shoulder distance apart with your elbows bent and squeezing towards one another (your toes are still touching the floor). Next tighten your core and start lean forward to draw your right foot off the floor slowly keeping your balance, then lift your left foot off the floor and draw it towards your right foot. Keep breathing, your head lifted and legs squeezing, weight should be balanced 70% on the right arm under the leg and 30% on the left arm.
  • Practice, practice, practice. This pose is challenging and the more you do it the easier it gets.


Counter poses after side crow?

  • Downward facing dog
  • Forward fold
  • Wrist circles

11/20/17 Weekly Topic: The Fifth Limb of Yoga- Pratyahara

Pratyahara is the withdrawal of the senses.  What does that even mean? You know when someone starts talking to you and you completely zone out, not hearing a word they said, not remembering what was going on in your head, and not seeing anything around you?  That’s almost it, in sorts!  So how do you practice that? I wouldn’t recommend you doing it at work or driving or during any important times, but I would suggest trying it out in small increments starting with 30 seconds and working your way up.

I think the best way to practice Pratyahara is with the eyes closed, and either in easy seated pose or in savasana (corpse pose.) Typically when you are finishing up a yoga class you end in one of these asanas and this is the perfect time to practice it. However, if you are easily distracted, like I am, you may want to practice it at home either when you first get up or just before bed. Once in position, close the eyes and turn your attention and awareness to your body. Notice the rise and fall of your chest, if thoughts try to sneak in take a deep breath and release those thoughts along with the breath, until all you notice is the air flowing in and out of the body. Notice you heart beating, notice your blood flowing through your veins, notice your cells receiving nutrients. Eventually the thought of the smallest molecule in your body floats away and you have that sense of being without senses.

It is common to fall asleep when practicing Pratyahara, if it happens don’t judge yourself and know you achieved Pratyahara for a moment. Concentrating on exactly nothing is a challenging task especially in today’s world of multi-multi tasking. If you do not achieve Pratyahara the first 10 times you try it do not get discouraged or judge yourself, the fact that you are trying to achieve the withdrawal of senses is challenging in itself. Pratyahara helps relieve stress by calming our sympathetic nervous system thus allowing the parasympathetic nervous system to engulf the body becoming deeply relaxed and open to the inner body reflecting to the outside the state of calmness and just being.

Lets zone in to zone out of our senses.