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Meet Your Kula: Mel Douglas

  Meet Your Kula: Mel Douglas Part of what makes us so unique are the amazing members of our Yogi community, our kula. Each month, we’ll feature one member of our yogi community, chat with them about their practice, learn more about what draws them to yoga, and get to know each other a little […]

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This Election Day Is Also “Take Yourself On” Day

Did you know there is a national fried scallops day? Umhmm, it was October 2nd. Put it on your calendar for next year if you’re upset you missed it. There’s also a national hermit day, name your car day, and get funky day. What does that even look like? I haven’t filed the paperwork or anything yet, but if there can be a national fluffernutter day, then there most certainly should be a day for us to unilaterally proclaim our desire to improve how we live, love, think, and behave. Join me in celebrating “take yourself on” today Election day seems like a damn good choice to celebrate this both nationally and internationally. We are constantly influencing everyone around us in both tiny and giant ways. When you show up for a packed yoga class at the last minute, and someone is thoughtful enough to move their mat to make room for you, it changes your entire outlook on your practice. No improvement or effort is too small. Yesterday, a man opened a door for me. He was walking in the same direction and hurried ahead so he could open the next one too. “I guess today is ‘I open […]

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The Hot Yoga Debate: Is It Actually Good for You?

Hot Yoga is the practice of yoga in a heated room. It’s typically practiced in heat that is 100 degrees or higher. If you just said, “Yikes, no f’ing way could I do that,” I’m with you. I’ve tried many times and finally landed smack dab on not for me. But there are many who absolutely live for it and there are legit reasons why. Let’s discuss. Facts about Hot Yoga Hot Yoga, aside from happening in an extremely heated room, is often thought of interchangeably with Bikram Yoga. This is a common mistake. The high temperature is the defining component, not the sequence. Many styles of yoga utilize high heat to accompany the style. These include Baptist Yoga, Barkan Method, and Modo Yoga. Reasons for practicing in a very heated room Advocates of Hot Yoga feel very strongly about the remarkable benefits they’ve personally derived from practicing in the extreme heat and sweating profusely while doing yoga. They describe it as life-changing. Here are the main hard-core benefits if this practice is something you’re either currently enjoying or interested in trying: It’s mentally challenging. If you’ve never tried it, the only way to find out for sure if it’s right […]

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Sacral Chakra Affirmations & Exercises to Enhance Your Sex Life

Would you like a better sex life? Who wouldn’t, right? It’s really about finding the best way for each of us individually to connect with what inspires and excites us. And we all know that our sex drive comes from a deeply emotional place. Even when we want to deny that and insist it’s more primal or purely physical, sex is about connection. Connecting to our emotions are how we do that. Gratitude for having a body that functions and can move in sexual ways is another time-tested strategy. And communication is everything. Sacral chakra affirmations can only help us discover our sexuality in more profound ways. Important deets about the sacral chakra It’s the second chakra. It lives right above the root chakra and it builds on that strong foundation. It’s Sanskrit name is Svadhisthana and it means “your own place”. This is where you own yourself and all that makes you who you are. The sacral chakra’s function is emotional connection and pleasure. Roar. We need to value doing things purely for pleasure in a more meaningful way. Sacral chakra affirmations remind us it’s not only okay to feel good, it’s imperative. Balancing the sacral chakra provides a greater […]

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Yoga Class Themes That Land Without Beating People Over The Head

I’ve been quite guilty of this. A themed yoga class turns a practice into a deeply personal experience. You’ll carry it with you and continue to revisit the offering long after you’ve left the studio and gone about your day. If the message is one we’re receptive to hearing, that’s usually enough to hit us hard and insist on further contemplation. Themed yoga classes offer us a wonderful way to continue our practice long after we’ve rolled up our mats This one time, in yoga class, the teacher came in and asked each of us to reach into a basket with our eyes closed and take an item from within. I was so excited until I retrieved my item and saw it was a plastic car. One of those old matchbox racer types. It didn’t land right away, but once the instructor gave his dharma talk, it hit me like a wheel barrel full of bricks. I had somewhere I needed to go and something very specific to do. The whole class was about looking for signs. And they’re everywhere if we’re receptive. The woman on my right had a knitting needle placed at the top of her mat. The dude to […]

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3 Truths Proving Gratitude is the Answer You’re Ignoring

We are all very well aware that gratitude needs to be a dominant force. But when shit goes down, and we’re in the throes of anger, frustration, and feeling a lack of control, gratitude is typically the last place we go. Even though it’s very difficult to remember saying thank you in the face of adversity helps, it’s exactly what we need to train ourselves to do. When we suffer, gratitude is the answer Think back to the last time you felt sadness. For most of us, it’s a daily thing. Even if it’s minor, we suffer over things both large and tiny. It’s not hard to get worked up. Traffic pisses everyone off to varying degrees. Saying hello to someone you pass on the street who doesn’t respond doesn’t feel good. Emailing a client who gets back to you but doesn’t answer any of your carefully crafted questions is annoying. Trying an arm balance in yoga class and landing flat on your face sucks. Even though at the end of the day these occurrences are small potatoes, at the moment, they bother us. Gratitude is the last thing on our minds. Saying thank you holds all kinds of power Let’s […]

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Self-Massage Benefits and Handling Delicate Trigger Points

I’d put getting a trigger points massage right up there with oysters and champaign for dinner. It’s extremely necessary to lead a happy life and be in optimal health. There’s nothing to argue here. If you can swing it, go get yourself a professional massage once a month. If that’s not in the budget, perhaps you have a willing partner or friend who’s game to quid pro quo with you. When none of this is feasible, you’ve always got yourself to rely on. And self-massage has loads of benefits, so we should be doing that anyway on the reg. There are trigger points lurking, waiting for you to find them They’re not hidden. They’re just not always obvious. The excitement lives inside the self-discovery of what feels insanely good to you. It’s also pertinent information to know what’s really irritable in your body and how to handle those delicate spots. Do you like it when someone tickles your arm? A lot of people love it.  I dislike it so much it makes my hair grow in different directions. Trigger points are different for each of us. So we need and deserve to spend some time in self-exploration. What exactly are […]

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Use An Oil Cleansing Method to Put Your Best Face Forward

I swear to you, washing your face with oil makes a whole lotta sense. If you’ve never tried an oil cleansing method, I’m really excited for you right now I was skeptical too. Very. But those who recommended using oil cleansing versus soap and water sure as hell had really nice skin. Trust the people who have the skin you want. Like attracts like It was only about ten years ago that this concept introduced itself to me. The law of attraction is that like attracts like. I had grown up with the opposites attract ideology. When we question what we know to be true, we can consider doing things differently and with gusto. Reasons using an oil cleansing method will improve your skin It’s a fact that oil dissolves oil. If you have oily skin, that means there is an overproduction of oil. To mitigate this, using the right oils depending on your skin’s needs can effectively clear up an abundance of oil, blackheads, acne, dry skin, you name it. Balance. By using natural oils to clean your face combats the oils your body produces that have become stuck. Dissolving these oils will create a healthy balance in your skin. […]

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How Often Should You Do Yoga? The Most Common Questions Asked and Answered

How often should you do yoga? Which yoga mat should I buy? How long will it take for my hamstrings to become more open? Should I do handstands if I’ve had a rotator cuff injury? The inquiry never stops, nor should it. Ask and question everything. There’s only circumstantial evidence that curiosity killed the cat. Curiosity is what it’s all about. If you have a question about yoga, chances are that many others have the same inquiry I’ve been teaching yoga for coming up on 13 years now. Primarily, I teach Vinyasa Yoga. But I’ve also spent time teaching Hatha, Yin, and Restorative. Below are the most common questions I’ve received over the years. The answers are based in both fact and opinion, so take it all with a big bag of salt. And keep that curiosity muscle flexed. How often should you do yoga? Daily. Keep in mind that your practice should reflect your goals, health, injury accommodation, and any other needs. Many swear by daily meditation. This can certainly be viewed as a yoga practice. If you believe the concept that your practice is your life, then practicing with every action you take, every word you speak and choice […]

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Practicing Yoga for Hip Pain and the Power of Backing Off

Some of us just are not all that talented at resting. If you’re an active sort and have trouble keeping still, then being told to rest might feel like a punishment. Since the joints of the hips are so large, sometimes they require more rest than we want to give them. But they will keep asking. And often, it will show up in the form of a demand. Practicing yoga for hip pain can help depending on what’s actually going on And just because I really love stating the obvious (and I’m so damn good at it), yoga instructors are not doctors. They can’t tell you why your hip hurts. Only an x-ray and qualified medical professional can help you out with that. However, if you’re not ready to go that route, trying rest may be your best bet. See where that takes you. Not interested? Then go see a professional so you know what you’re dealing with. Less is often more I promise. It feels like those words are spilling out of my mouth on the regular as of late. The very deepest place you can go is not necessarily the most optimal for you. If you’re always reaching […]

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