This post goes out to all my yoga junkies who love to shop for anything yoga! I came across Yoga Rat as I was driving down Pico Blvd in West Los Angeles and made a mental note to check it out. I finally went in today and discovered that Yoga Rat isn't just the next "trendy" active-lifestyle brand; it's also the first yoga product outlet store I've ever seen. What does this mean??? Affordable yoga clothing and accessories made from non-toxic materials! Isn't it every yogi's fantasy to put his or her best "toe" forward while staying on budget and without squandering on the environment? Ahhhh, solace in shopping, Yes please! As the holiday season quickly approaches forget about purchasing yoga gear as gifts at an overpriced yoga studio where a single block can cost up to $20! Compare this with a yoga block from Yoga Rat at $11.99.
Yoga Rat is especially kind to certified yoga instructors! Whether you own a studio and/or teach, whether you practice yoga at a studio or in the privacy of your home take advantage of the 10% discount for ALL first time customers. Prepare for a friendly greeting from Wendell or Dave as you enter the space and don't forget to mention that you are a yoga professional (if you really are one...ASTEYA) and the friendly duo will throw in some free goodies.
Tuesday, 29 November 2011
Many thanks to those of you who attended my workshop yesterday on Getting Grounded at the beautiful Shakti Sanctuary in Palos Verdes. I am so excited to say that I will be teaching there now. The class schedule is to be determined; however, I am officially accepting new clients for privates and semi-privates at this AMAZING space. Please contact me for more information if you are interested in getting your yoga on with me in this stunning setting. I can say with utmost certainty and authenticity that practicing in an environment like Shakti Sanctuary will take your yoga practice to the next level allowing the benefits of your practice to fully soak into every cell of your being.
Check out my bio on the Shakti Sanctuary website.
See you in Down Dog!
Monday, 03 October 2011
Sometimes as a dancer I get tired of wearing leotards and tights all the time.. I am always on the lookout for cool gear I can rehearse in that's comfortable, breathable and flattering of course! ALO is my new favorite brand of yoga/dancewear. I love what the name ALO stands for: Air, Land, Ocean. ALO's minimal impact on the environment gives me piece of mind so I wear it proudly (and I look pretty damn good in it!)
A Few Awesome Pieces In Action...Love the material and fit!
Cross Neck Tank in Magenta/Pink Lady, sold at BeeBliss.
The thumb holes in the hoodie are great for cold weather and just looks really cool. Makes your arms longer & leaner
Studio Contrast Waist Pant (W5007R), sold at Online Shoes.
Wednesday, 14 September 2011
Every yogi needs a mat to practice on, so why not get a cool one like this one? The Trainer Mat by Trainer Brands is the first yoga mat of its kind with 28 illustrated instructional drawings of yoga poses printed directly on the surface. This is great for a beginner and for those trying to establish a regular home practice.
Other Trainer Brands products include stretch/yoga mats with printed instructional drawings for stretches and excercises for golf, maternity, aquatic sports, stretching, pilates, weight loss, etc... printed right on the mat. Trainer Brands also makes gym balls and foam rollers with printed instructional drawings on how to use these gym toys. Best Idea EVER!!!!
The only drawback I see to the Trainer Mats is its lack of grip. If you practice vinyasa or hot yoga where you sweat profusely, you need to put a towel down or a Yogitoes Skidless Mat Towel down. Trainer Brands might consider tapping into this market and use their creative and informative approach for a Trainer Skidless mat with instructional diagrams drawn on the skidless mat.
Wednesday, 07 September 2011
This past weekend I went to the IDEA Fitness Expo at the Los Angeles Convention Center with a couple girlfriends and we had a blast! So many awesome products (and so many bizzare ones also). If you are a fitness professional or even a fitness enthusiast, (and especially if you are single) I highly recommend visiting the next Fitness Expo!
Tuesday, 16 August 2011
Lately I've been on a CorePower Yoga® binge. The initial reason I visited the studio was to inquire about teaching positions; however, I enjoyed the class and ambiance enough to accept the studio’s offer for new students for one week of free yoga. After one week, I signed up for a one month unlimited yoga membership for $99.00. If you are a yoga junkie like me, the monthly membership makes great economic sense, especially when you compare this offer with competing studios that charge twice as much for a monthly membership.The calm allure and immaculate conditions of the CorePower Yoga® facilities are irresistible to the contemporary urban yogi or yogini. CorePower Yoga® class style combines the Ashtanga and Vinyasa methods. Classes range from 60 to 95 minutes conducted in a heated studio with humidity. The more advanced classes are a little hotter, but have no fear because it feels incredible when they turn up the heat! This approach is entirely different than Bikram in that the heat never exceeds 100 degrees, humidifiers are also used in the yoga studios and the instructors incorporate philosophical and meditative elements into the class curriculum.
Friday, 12 August 2011
Prana-whata? Yea, that was my first thought when I heard the word pranayama for the very first time. Prana is the Sandskrit word for “vital life” and is understood as the life force energy that resides within each and every one of us. Pranic energy is that which sustains all life and does so through breath. Yama, the first limb of Patanjali’s eight-limbed yogic path, relates to our attitudes towards the outside world. Therefore, pranayama is the way in which we exercise control over this life force energy. The benefits of pranayama or breath retention are vast. Studies have shown that a regular pranayama practice has profound effects the nervous system in addition to the physical body. A daily pranayama practice can lower blood pressure, ease tension and stress by eliciting the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for the relaxation response.
Who has time these days to sit cross-legged on a yoga mat for an hour each day? No one! No problem. It’s not the amount of time you practice pranayama that matters, it’s the quality and the consistency of your practice. How do you practice pranayama if you’ve never done it before? It’s as easy as these three steps:
Monday, 02 May 2011
If you practice vinyasa yoga or any other physically demanding activity it's crucial to find a good bodyworker. At home, I try to do as much as I can on my own to roll out the kinks and muscle adhesions using a foam roller and other toys, but there's no comparison for getting some great bodywork. I found an amazing bodyworker at Yoga Tree in San Francisco and his name is V. Yes, V. Just V. It was quite possibly the best massage I've ever had in that not only was the pressure deep enough but V also incorporated techniques like stretching and working on the back of my body while I was lying face up! I've never experienced bodywork in this way before and it was really incredible because the weight of my own body aided V in getting deep into the bound up muscle tissue in and around my low back, gluteus maximus and gluteus minimus. On top of V's technical mastery he radiated a healing and spiritual vibe that was very comforting. Being able to "hold space" in an intimate practice like bodywork or yoga is imperative because people can and do feel vulnerable underneath that little cloth separating all of them from the bodyworker and outside world. I was also impressed with how thorough V was in his work. V left no muscle unturned so to speak and because he was so thorough time seemed to slow down, which is great when you’re getting bodywork! I thought the massage was almost done but in actuality we had about another 10-15 minutes to go. I appreciate the thoughtfulness of V informing me that there was only 10 minutes left so if there's anything specific I want worked we still had enough time. Overall, a fantastic experience
Tuesday, 22 March 2011
To follow up on yesterday's rant discussing mediocrity amongst yoga instructors I'm so pleased that the recommendation from my Los Angeles based mentor Annie Carpenter was a fantastic one! I went to the same Yoga Tree in San Francisco located in the Mission District on Valencia Street and was blown away by the dynamic, heartfelt and precise instruction of Les Leventhal. What a difference a day makes... even if you come to the same place. It’s quite possible that the instructor from the all-level vinyasa class from yesterday (who will continue to remain nameless) is the one bad egg from the dozen. I did a bit of chit chatting with Les after class, giving him a big hello from Annie. Les mentioned that I wasn't the only ballet dancer in his class on this particular evening. I didn’t really think anything of it until I went into the ladies room to change when I thought I caught a glimpse of Muriel Maffre standing right in front of me. Indeed it was her! How small the world is! Ms. Maffre taught my professional ballet class at LINES the day before. Ms. Maffre was one of my idols growing up. This woman is incredible to say the least. Ms. Maffre is a talking and walking piece of art. She is tall, long and more refined than Loius XIV at one of his ballet de cours. I approached Ms. Maffre and like a retard asked if it was really her. I expressed my awe and then she left.
This whole experience left me with a deep sense of gratitude and an understanding that we are all connected in this world. Despite what city you live in, what yoga studio you frequent, there’s a ripple effect that results from all of our conscious and unconscious actions. This experience serves as a reminder that there is indeed something much larger than our human minds are equipped to comprehend...something vibrational if you will…something that joins all us eggs into one cardboard container.
Saturday, 15 January 2011
This past Monday I went to see Jesse Rice, a neuromuscular healer at a local Gyrotonics® studio. Mr. Rice developed and coined his technique the Rice Release Technique.™ This technique is a form of active release technique or ART. Mr. Rice finds the line of fascia along an injured limb or trunk and finds the area where there's excess tension...i.e. where there's locked energy or tension. Then he will manually enter the area... and let me tell you it hurts...at first, but after a few seconds the pain subsides and Mr. Rice moves up along the line of fascia to find the next tension point and employs the same technique. Mr. Rice explained it to me this way...let's say you get into a car accident and you lose a limb. You may not even realize it until you are already in the ambulance because you are in shock. The brain shuts off the pain signals to that limb. The Rice Release Technique™ works with the same part of the brain that interrupts pain signals to the injured area by manually locating them and what Mr. Rice calls "turning them off." The relief as experienced by the client is longer lasting as opposed to the temporary relief after a deep tissue massage, which could irritate the surrounding tissues more and cause more inflammation. This experience really made me think a lot about how closely related the mind and the body are. The body and mind are interdependent for their optimal functionality.
To learn more about Rice Release Technique™ and Jesse Rice CLICK HERE and scroll down to Jesse Rice's bio.
Thursday, 16 December 2010
FEEL CENTERED AND POWERFUL!!!!!
A couple weeks ago I was watching a Boston Celtics game with one of my friends who is a die-hard Celtics fan. As the camera panned in on the benched players I saw good ole Shaquille O'Neal sitting on the bench amongst his fellow Bostonians basketball bros and I noticed a tiny bracelet around his huge wrist. Was he trying to make a fashion statement? As I poked fun of at the failed fashion attempt, my friend Mariah pointed out that the bracelet around Shaq's wrist was one of those magnetic bracelets that's suppose to help regulate your balance, strength and power. Being the skeptic that I am, I scoffed but my other friend and my boyfriend chimed in. Mike admits that high intensity athletics aren't exactly his forte; but even he tried one of those bracelets and noticed an immediate difference when golfing or exercising. Mike continued to explain that many athletes wear this bracelet. Frankly, Mike and Mariah were both surprised that I was totally unaware of this approach to better balance and power. Curiosity sparked, my insatiable desire to better my craft led me to investigate further the next day. I went to my local physical therapy store and purchased one. I have worn the bracelet for about a week and a half and definitely noticed a difference. I can tell my balance is better and my overall body awareness is much better also. It’s almost as if a Divine hand comes out of no where and nudges me back onto my leg when I should’ve fallen off of pointe during a balance or a pirouette. My movement patterns are more efficient and I fatigue less. I am more physically and mentally centered when I wear it. I am "with it." I even notice a difference in my yoga practice when I wear the bracelet. I only wear it when I work. On the days I tried not wearing it to work I just felt regular. (yawn)
Check out the Power Balance bracelet I bought (see image above) isn't metallic. The way it works is the hologram on it resonates with and reacts with my own field of energy. The bracelet doesn't have to actually be touching your body to work, but it does need to be no more than three inches away from your body in order for you to soak in its benefits. They come in all different colors and sizes from XS to I'm assuming XXXL for someone like Shaq! No, this is not a paid endorsement of any given product. It is my own personal experience with this product that I believe is worth sharing. So maybe the awkwardly tall and brutish Shaq and the delicate little ballerina do have one thing in common: better balance, strength and power derived from what we perceive as a thin plastic bracelet with a hologram.
Tuesday, 30 November 2010