Blog

THE LYMPHATIC SYSTEM

We have all had swollen glands when we were sick. Those glands are lymphatic nodes and when we are sick, they swell.  We may not have heard much about it, these nodes are part of the lymphatic system. It is important because it regulates our immune system by removing damaged cells and other waste from ...

ATTITUDE

This is often the time of year when we review our previous months and look forward to the months ahead. I try to look back over the year and put my disappointments in perspective and to highlight the joys instead. As I was thinking about what I wanted to write in this blog, I decided ...

RESTING LEGS

Tired legs can result from too much walking, standing or exercising, but also can come from too much sitting! So, basically, your legs get tired from almost everything you do all day! Fortunately, there is a simple and easy pose that can make your legs feel better. Viparita Karani, or Legs-Up-the-Wall pose, has wonderful benefits. ...

YOGA YOGA EVERYWHERE

Have you noticed that there are now signs for yoga studios in almost any small strip mall, shopping center, gym, spa, etc.? Since I started practicing yoga more than 40 years ago, I still am constantly amazed at how its popularity has become so mainstream. When car advertisements on TV include yoga poses, this tells ...

KINDERGARTEN YOGA

I love teaching yoga to children of all ages. When I was a special education teacher for emotionally disturbed elementary school kids, my students loved how the yoga we did made them feel! It was such a unique feeling for them! They could relax and let go of so much of their angst. Later, teaching ...

SEATED SUN EXERCISES VIDEO (YouTube)

I wrote about the Seated Sun Exercises in a BLOG in 2013, but I would like to add to it since I now have a YouTube Video that shows how to do them. There are 2 models in the video, both shown seated. One is Theresa, who has MS and is the person for whom ...

MOTHER’S DAY

I am going to visit my mother next week to celebrate Mother’s Day with her. She lives in Arizona in a senior retirement place – of her choosing – and she will be 94 this summer. She loves it there! I have always learned, and continue to learn a lot about aging and life from ...

My Loose Shoulders

My Loose Shoulders In my youth, I was one of those kids who could always do splits, wind my arms around my body, etc. Loose ligaments. It was sort of fun and was probably one of the reasons I was attracted to yoga in my early 20’s. I could grab my elbows behind my back ...

Listening to Your Body

The eternal battle in knowing the difference between what your body is telling you it needs, and what your mind is telling you it wants does not always improve with age. It just changes. Learning to listen to your inner self, the brilliance of your natural, innate self, is not easy. Since early childhood, parents ...

2015

I have been very busy ending 2014 and beginning 2015 and thinking about what to write in this blog. Reflections of a year gone by, goals and plans and hopes for the new year are ever-present at this time, but by now, we are already off and running since the first full work week of ...

It’s Always Better After Yoga…

For many years, after my yoga classes when students would say how great they feel, I have usually replied “It’s always better after yoga!” And we have laughed about how I should make that slogan into a t-shirt! Well, this year, I finally made one for the holidays! Roseanne Harvey invited me to include my ...

SUGAR RUSH AFTER HALLOWEEN

Yesterday was Halloween and there has been and will continue to be, candy everywhere we go! Candy for the anticipated eve, and then left over candy that didn’t get “treated”. So, what does that mean for our bodies? I am not a doctor or nutritionist, but there is enough data that shows how terrible sugar ...

INNER THIGHS AND CORE STABILITY

The concept of core stability has always been important, but lately, it is very popular in most bodywork classes. Yet, the majority of students think that this concept relates to sit-ups and increasing the abdominal muscles. Building these muscles certainly is valuable, along with other trunk muscles, however, it is also important to acknowledge the ...

Cycle of Life

The past few weeks have been very thought-provoking for me.  First, one of the most influential yoga teachers in my life (and in the world) passed away, B.K.S. Iyengar. Second, a new grandson was brought into our family. One passing and one welcoming. There has been an enormous outpouring of comments, recollections, photos, and articles ...

Listening with New Ears

Recently, I have noticed that out of habit, I sometimes find myself not listening to each word when someone I know speaks on a topic that is familiar. I find myself filling in the blanks with my own directions and often it is not until much later that I realize I have not processed the ...

Salutations to the Sun

Throughout history, cultures have had a reverence for the sun, which continues today. As yoga students and teachers, we are certainly reminded daily through our Sun Exercises, or Surya Namaskar, of the power of the sun. Personally, I have always loved and appreciated the basic series as well as the growing sequences of variations. I ...

Relaxing the Psoas

The psoas muscles are a popular topic among yoga teachers these days (and with good reason!) We have come to realize their importance and many of us have begun to recognize how much we have not known all these years! The psoas muscles (one on each side of our bodies) attach at the inner part ...

Relaxation and Stress Reduction for Fibromyalgia

It’s that time of year again when those with fibromyalgia (FM) are recognized and information is given to help promote an understanding of this often debilitating condition.  Last year, around this same time, I wrote a blog on fibromyalgia, since May 12th is National Fibromyalgia Education and Awareness Day.  I have been working with yoga ...

April Fools’ Day

I have been lucky enough to travel to many parts of the world.  For my 60th birthday, my husband and I went to Bhutan.  On April 1st, while there, the local children played silly jokes on us and said, in English, “April Fool!”  It seems this day is a universal day, even in many places ...

Seated Hamstring Stretch

Almost everyone has tight hamstrings. Of course, “tight” is a relative term, and some will appear to be more flexible than others. If you sit all day, the muscles shorten in the flexed position of the knee and hip, and get tight. If you walk or exercise a lot, the muscles are constantly being worked, ...

Yoga Beyond Belief

There are a myriad of yoga books these days, many of which offer valuable information, and others that provide beautiful photos of great bodies in unusual positions. One of my favorite books, Yoga Beyond Belief, is more thought-provoking and insightful than it is visual. It is written by an internationally well-known yoga teacher whom I ...

Resolutions and Yoga in Your Daily Life

This is the time of year for reflection.  We look back over the days of 2013 and think of the ways we made ourselves happy and also the things we did that caused or cause us disappointment.  As a result, we then often tell ourselves that THIS year, 2014, will be different. We will be ...

LYMPHATIC FLOW YOGA SERIES

LYMPHATIC FLOW YOGA SERIES The lymphatic system is part of our immune system and consists of tiny vessels, smaller than arteries and veins, which produce, store and carry white blood cells that fight infection and disease. So problems with the lymphatic system can impair the body’s ability to fight infections. We all should be aware ...

SEATED SUN EXERCISES

A few decades ago, a yoga student and friend of mine with MS told me she missed dancing and moving because she was in a wheelchair. So, I created a seated version of the Sun Exercises for her so she could “flow” and have been teaching it to all of my students ever since. For ...

YOGA for CANCER SURVIVORS

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. During the 14 years I was the Executive Director of Enhancement, Inc. (a nonprofit that worked to improve the quality of life for breast cancer survivors) October was always intense and packed with breast cancer events.  This is still a cause close to my heart, so I thought ...

YOGA for HANDS

My last blog was about toes, and this month I am focusing on hands. They are so important to our daily function, yet we don’t pay much attention to them until they begin to ache or develop arthritis. During much of our day, we use many muscles that hold our hands parallel to our forearms, ...

FOR THE TOES

Toes: far too often we forget about them, yet they are so very important. They are key to balance in your feet, which obviously affects your full body alignment. Babies are born with such perfect little feet and toes. I have a three-year-old grandson whose feet I keep an eye on with great admiration! I ...

THE PELVIS

Most people can locate their own pelvis, but as a teacher, I always make sure to give a clear explanation of its significance, since, surprisingly, many educated adults don’t understand the importance of the pelvis and its location. The word pelvis is from the Latin and means “basin.” This tells us a bit more about ...

THE POWER OF THE BREATH

In Western culture, we really underestimate the value of how our breath relates to our health. In Eastern culture, on the other hand, breathing is thought of as not just anatomical (inhale, exhale) but also as an art. Maybe with the increased popularity of yoga in the West, the awareness of breath as art will ...

SEATED MOUNTAIN POSE

In my last Blog, I talked about fibromyalgia (FM) since the month of May is focused on fibromyalgia education and awareness. I explained that yoga, with its individualized approach, can address many of the symptoms of FM by focusing on alignment, posture, balance, and relaxation techniques. I also noted that, along with certain poses, visualization ...

YOGA for FIBROMYALGIA

May 12th is National Fibromyalgia Education and Awareness Day so fibromyalgia (FM) will be the focus of this blog.  I have been working with yoga students who have FM since 1996*.  This condition exhibits a broad array of symptoms and there is no cure, but yoga has been shown to be of great value in ...

YOGA BASICS for THOSE with SPECIAL NEEDS

I have a classically autistic brother, non-verbal, hand-twirling, but fascinating. From a young age, I have been spending time with children and adults who were autistic, autistic-like, or just different. In the late 1970’s, after I had been teaching yoga for many years, I became a special education teacher and began to share yoga with ...

MY YOGA

The Chinese have a saying “to move is to live” and I like to remind students that it is not a question of who is the most flexible or the strongest but rather whether you are using your body to its fullest. If you are in a wheelchair, it does not mean that your life ...