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Meet Your Kula: Krystal Prout

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 more. Meet our Prajñā Yogi, Krystal […]

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Yoga Symbols and Why They Compel Us So Very Much

What’s the first thing you think when you see someone wearing a t-shirt featuring an OM? “That human digs yoga.” “They are probably an open-minded sort.” “I’m going to ask her where she practices yoga.” “Am I OMing correctly?” Essentially, yoga symbols have meaning to us because we feel a deep and profound love for yoga and want to express it Symbols have always been a potent way to announce devotion, support, and reverence. They tell the world an important piece of our identity and values. Religious people often wear a piece of jewelry announcing their membership, such as a cross or Star of David. The yin/yang symbol holds strong meaning in Taoism and represents the pursuit of balance and wholeness. It also stands for the beginning point for change. In Native American culture, the bull skull is symbolic of offering protection from the natural elements. It also stands for strength, courage, and leadership. Yoga symbols have grown wildly popular. If you actively observe this, you’ll find them everywhere from jewelry, clothing, tattoos, pillows, paintings and sculptures, hell, even nail polish decals. The Om is probably the most recognizable and popular. I decided to count the number of Om yoga symbols I […]

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2 Highly Effective Breath Practices to Minimize Stress & Anxiety

It really is all about the breath Every time I think otherwise, I’m again proven wrong. And I enjoy being wrong about this. It’s comforting to be reminded and really accept that the breath is paramount and everything else has the job of supplementing the effectiveness of breath. Don’t believe me? Think of the hardest pose you can effectively (most of the time) execute. Okay, now go practice it with a determined commitment to your breath. How did it go? Pretty damn well, I’m betting. Sit with that. Breath practices and movement equal excellent outcomes. Next, try the posture while holding your breath. What’s the verdict? Did you kind of want to pass out a little from the awfulness of it? Yeah, been there. Been there too many times. And I know I’ll be there again. I can’t quite seem to remember to prioritize breath practices each and every single time. If we know a specific resource makes all the difference, why would we ever decide not to utilize it? There are quite a few theories on why breath practices are not as much of a priority as they should be: We are habitual folks. All of us. We get […]

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3 Mind Blowing Kundalini Yoga Benefits: Scratching the Surface of this Miraculous Practice

I was a skeptic. I’d heard all about how magical and transformative Kundalini yoga is, but somehow never felt compelled to give it a go. Since I’m a writer and believe in writing from experience, I decided to finally take a Kundalini class. It knocked me sideways and shocked my system. I have never left a yoga class or any other experience with such a lightness and giddy sense I’d stumbled into something that would irrevocably change my whole perspective on how I cope with and experience life. Kundalini yoga really is that deep And now I get why people often have trouble explaining Kundalini yoga. How do you find the words to label something that touches you on levels you’ve never quite located before? I’m very new at this, so perhaps the effects don’t land quite so intensely after a while. Although, talking to others after class leads me to believe I’m not alone in my excitement. They too are thrilled they’ve found this practice and want to share it with as many other people as they can compel to try it. Kundalini yoga basics First, a brief primer about Kundalini, or ‘The Yoga of Awareness’. There are no […]

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Sitting Poses Give You A Lotta Bang for Your Buck in a Yoga Practice

Tis true, sitting poses are the most versatile Nobody needs to get up in arms defending standing poses, arm balances, balance postures, and inversions. I didn’t say they were the best. I said they are the most adaptable and accessible. I’m also not arguing about if they should be called seated or sitting poses. They are the same and it’s a preference. When I broke my leg in an ATV accident 4 years ago, sitting poses were my very best friend and savior from insanity. Sounds dramatic, but when you teach yoga for a living and practice daily, having options are vital when you can’t walk or stand without crutches. That’s when I first discovered Here’s a short list of the many ways sitting poses can offer a well-rounded practice: You can work hard or hardly. I absolutely love that it’s a choice in sitting poses. And no one knows except for you how much you are choosing to chill or that you’re busting ass. That’s pretty delicious. If you have a foot, ankle, tibia, fibula, or knee injury, you can still do sitting poses. You can work your core and allow the injury to heal. You can engage your quadriceps […]

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Which of The Most Popular Types of Yoga Is the Best Fit For You?

There are so many types of yoga, it can feel beyond overwhelming You gotta love how many interpretations there are and all of the various ways we can enjoy and explore yoga. I was really blown away as a new student when I began to delve into just how many schools, styles, and types of yoga there were to choose from. I took the trial and error approach before landing on Vinyasa as my jam. Luckily we don’t have to choose just one style. But most of us determine a preference and pursue it with fervent ardor. Below is a list of the most popular types of yoga and the pertinent deets you need to know.   7 types of yoga commonly loved and practiced Ashtanga Yoga Ashtanga technically falls under the umbrella of Vinyasa, but it’s a set series of postures broken down into primary series, second series, and four advanced series. A set series means you’ll do the sequence in the same order every single time.  Ashtanga centers around the sun salutations and it’s a rigorous physical practice. Ashtanga-lovers are often equated to the Type-A personality as lovers of discipline, hard work, and perfectionism.  The further a practitioner gets into […]

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Yoga Music That Will Move You in All the Ways (Song Suggestions Included)

How does one define yoga music? In my humble opinion, ‘one’ does not. Yoga music is any music you want to practice to. At home, you have every option. If you love Stevie Wonder, David Bowie, and have even been known to rock it out to Led Zepplin, super duper, crank it up. If it gets you on your mat and helps you harmonize your breath, then it’s most def yoga music. When sequencing music for a yoga class, it’s a little more important to consider the tastes of many. I’ve threatened to teach a class entirely to a Beastie Boys soundtrack, but as of yet, it’s just a threat. Choose the music you love that’s conducive to movement without being distracting. The music has to arch just as a class does. If you begin your classes with gentle poses and you’re moving slowly, the music needs to reflect this, obvi. When you’re working towards a more dynamic phase, it’s helpful if the music is a bit more upbeat with a faster tempo. Creating yoga music playlists is an art form enjoyed by many But that doesn’t mean it’s simple. I always wind up putting a clunker on the first […]

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Why Vinyasa Yoga is the One for Me

I tried Bikram yoga first. I liked how I felt after, but hated every second of it during the practice. I knew that exploring other styles was an imperative part of my investigation into the overwhelming world of yoga. Next was Ashtanga yoga. I gave it a go, really tried to fall in love. I fell in like, but we were not meant to be life partners. And then, I walked into my first vinyasa yoga class. Oh my. Vinyasa yoga is my true love Every single thing about vinyasa yoga spoke seductive, loving truths. I had a seasoned, dynamic, and creative teacher. That really helps, obviously. She wove a technicolor tapestry of flows that seamlessly connected. Feeling that sense of yoga being a dance with intelligent sequencing and enchanting music that made my breath feel as if it were singing along. The excitement I felt floating out of that class was a thrill I still carry to this day. And I know it will never go away. Because the lure of variety beckons, I’ll stray from vinyasa yoga, but I always come back Shiny and new is enticing. Watching an advanced Ashtanga practitioner will take your breath away. When seemingly impossible feats […]

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All The Reasons Yogi Surprise Helps You Achieve the Practice You Really Need

Yogi Surprise exists to propel your practice It’s our singular dharma. All of us here at Yogi Surprise are deeply passionate about assisting you in enjoying the practice you want, need, and crave to discover on a daily basis. And because our practice does change, we need various things to keep us focused and motivated. We’re different every single day. Actually, if we want to get truly real, every single minute we are shifting. So our practice must reflect this and each carefully curated item included in a yogi surprise box is aimed towards not just improving your practice experience but enabling you to understand yourself, your goals, and what motivates you to both achieve and just simply be. Yogi surprise is your toolbox We all need one. Do you remember the first time you ever learned about the yamas and niyamas? I recall vividly thinking, “Where have these simple yet so inherently necessary concepts for living been all of my life?” It changed me. Effective and strong tools do that. Does a crystal have that kind of intrinsic power? It does if it provokes and steers you in the direction of positive thinking and growth. Variety is everything and discovery […]

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Why Restorative Yoga is The Practice We All Need the Most

Let’s break down what restorative yoga really means Restoration means “the act of returning something to a former and improved condition”.  It’s what each of us needs to be in full command of our lives and selves. When our sense of contentment and well-being are feeling off-kilter, it’s time to address what we’ve been ignoring. Restorative yoga is a highly effective way to do this. In a restorative yoga class, there are lots of bolsters, blankets, eye pillows, sandbags, and other props that help each of us to receive an assist as we approach each posture with ease and a gentle intention. Typically postures are held for several minutes so the practitioner can fully receive the benefits and dive deep into a relaxed state. Postures include hip openers, shoulder and hamstring stretches and gentle releases for the spine and shoulders. We are a culture that is highly focused on achievement. For many of us being busy brings us a sense of productivity. But y’all, it’s a false belief. We absolutely have to slow down. When we ignore all of the obvious signs we need rest, relaxation, and to do basically nothing, we pay the price. We get ill. We get […]

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