Yoga Journal - November 2013 USA

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November 2013

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Yoga Journal - November 2013 USA

  1. 1. REVITALIZE YOUR PRACTICE (AND YOUR LIFE) JOU R NA L HOW TO UNWIND BUILD POWER IN YOUR CORE AT NIGHT & WAKE UP REFRESHED A BETTER WAY TO STRETCH YOUR HAMSTRINGS HOW YOGA HELPS IN A CRISIS plus 8 POSES FOR A HAPPY, HEALTHY PREGNANCY Nov 2013 / Display until Nov 26, 2013 YOGAJOURNAL.COM
  2. 2. contents NOVEMBER 2013 on the cover 65 | Revitalize your practice (and your life) 56 | Build power in your core 68 | How to unwind at night & wake up refreshed 44 | A better way to stretch your hamstrings 53 | How yoga helps in a crisis 74 | 8 poses for a happy, healthy pregnancy features 68 | DAY & NIGHT India’s ancient system of medicine offers simple practices you can do to balance your energy and boost your health. by Shannon Sexton 74 | BABY LOVE Prenatal yoga can prepare your mind, body, and spirit for motherhood. cover credits model: Jennifer Lane; stylist: Lyn Heineken; hair/makeup: Erin Lee Smith/Aubri Balk Inc; top: Prana; capris: Elisabetta Rogiani; photography: David Martinez TRINETTE REED AND CHRIS GRAMLY by Jessica Berger Gross
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  4. 4. contents N ovem b er 20 1 3 44 35 yoga lifestyle practice 17 | OM 44 | BASICS Bringing your practice to life Head-of-the-knee pose Learn Practice courage on your mat; ease to extend your spine while stretching commuting stiffness; interview with your back body in Janu Sirsasana. Michael Franti; naturally sweet cranberry by Nikki Costello 56 | MASTER CLASS 28 | BEAUTY Shape shifter Let the ebb and flow Squeaky clean Outfit a luxurious soak of your breath help you find your way in the tub with eco-friendly materials. into this challenging forward bend. 35 | EATING WISELY 24 by Annie Carpenter inspiration Fearless feast Even for confident 65 | HOME PRACTICE cooks, Thanksgiving dinner can be the WITH CLAIRE MISSINGHAM 53 | LIVING YOGA most anxiety-provoking meal of the Free flow Shake things up with a Ultimate practice Yoga promises to free us year. Yoga can help. by Chrissy Carter practice that lets you see your habits from suffering—even the kind that comes from in a whole new light. life’s most difficult experiences. 82 | REVIEWS by Kate Holcombe New books, CDs, and DVDs, featuring an interview with yogi and kirtan artist 100 | YOGA SCENE Krishna Das; plus a guide to finding yoga Grand stand A reader puts down roots on the wisdom to live by at work, Rodney Yee’s rim of the Grand Canyon. by Shannon Costello new DVD, and mantra music by The Hanumen and Wah!. 65 in every issue 10 | EDITOR’S LETTER 98 | LIVING WELL 14 | LETTERS 4 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M 94 | YOGA PAGES 12 | CONTRIBUTORS 99 | CLASSIFIEDS NOVEMBER 2013 CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: DAVID MARTINEZ; SHERI GIBLIN; ERIC AUDRAS/GETTY IMAGES; MICHAEL WINOKUR sauce recipe, and more.
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  6. 6. JOIN US ONLINE yogajournal.com ASKED ON FACEBOOK Q: What are your kids’ favorite poses? A: My child loves poses we can do together like double Down Dog and Lizard on a Rock. He also loves any inversion, and Warrior because he feels like a Jedi! Robbie Michelle Short A: My kids love the asana, but their best bit is Savasana and relaxation at the end, to my surprise! Pia Mydear A: All three of my kids do excel- lent Wheel Poses, much better than their old man. Michael Kennedy the family that practices together Kids take to yoga like ducks to water. Want to introduce the practice to your brood? Learn how at yogajournal.com/family A: My 3-year-old does yoga with me almost daily. She loves Tree Pose and is getting better every day. Her little sister even tries, too. BACKSTAGE PASS ON A ROLL For a mash-up of articles, inspiration, video, and more, follow YJ’s Tumblr! yogajournal.tumblr.com 6 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M Check out the action behind the scenes as we put together this issue of the magazine. instagram.com/yogajournal FOLLOW US NOVEMBER 2013 CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: DEBRA McCLINTON; JESSICA ABELSON (3); RORY EARNSHAW Good stuff! Catherine Schmidt
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  8. 8. The supreme clean Charity Ferreira acting editor in chief Charli Ornett creative director EDITORIAL managing editor Jennifer Rodrigue senior editors Philip Armour, Andrea Ferretti, Lauren Ladoceour, Carmel Wroth contributing medical editor Timothy McCall, MD copy editors Christopher Dare, Alicia Eckley, Elizabeth Kennedy proofreader Lesley Bruynesteyn researchers Sarah Drew, John Maas contributing editors Nikki Costello, Jason Crandell, Hillari Dowdle, Kate Holcombe, Sally Kempton, Richard Rosen ART art director Alisha Petro associate art director Dwayne Carter contributing designers Robin Briskin, Monica Lee PRODUCTION & TABLET EDITIONS creative services director Jane Tarver senior digital specialist Paige Ferguson-Tritt advertising booking and traffic manager Tracy Phelps color specialist Carol Rossi DIGITAL director, web operations Ken Coffelt executive online editor Kelle Walsh associate online editor Jessica Abelson contributing online editor Erica Rodefer Winters senior web developer James Kafader web production assistant Allison Blake online editorial intern Kristen Williams CONFERENCES conference director Elana Maggal senior conference manager Renée LaRose associate conference manager Alden Conant conference sponsorship liaison Kiara McBain conference marketing manager Meagan Dobson INTERNATIONAL EDITIONS director of international licensing Dayna Macy of participants in a clinical study agreed DHC Deep Cleansing Oil worked better at removing complexion makeup than a leading cleanser. Remove what other cleansers leave behind. Dirt, makeup and excess oil dissolve completely. Made with olive oil: Gentle and effective. Patricia B. Fox general manager Bill Harper vice president, group publisher GENERAL ADVERTISING associate publisher Lisa Wolford (415) 591-0601 online sales planner Ene Siong (415) 591-0660 northwest sales director Kathleen Craven (415) 380-9642 east coast sales Al Berman (516) 766-2122 midwest sales Kathi Magee (414) 897-0377 detroit sales Colleen Maiorana (248) 546-2222 southern california sales Gloria Biscardi (310) 356-2247 southwest sales Tanya Scribner (940) 387-7711 YOGA, MEDIA & DIRECT RESPONSE ADVERTISING east coast account manager Wesleigh Roeca (415) 591-0602 west coast account manager Tina Hou (415) 591-0603 marketplace and classifieds Lauren Castagna (415) 434-6296 MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS marketing director Haley Brockmeier (415) 591-0726 senior marketing manager John Robles (415) 434-6292 marketing & promotions coordinator Rachel Van Buskirk (415) 591-0722 senior marketing designer Anne Mellinger junior marketing designer Elissa Park director of corporate communications Dayna Macy CONSUMER MARKETING group circulation director Barbara Besser group circulation manager Daryl Marco e-commerce director Sara Tresslar director of partnerships/web marketing Debbie Kane group new business manager Kathleen Donahue circulation analyst Michael Alexander ACCOUNTING & ADMINISTRATION vice president of information technology Nelson Saenz information technology consultant Kirk Thompson information technology help desk technician Tej Virk office manager Amy Metry office assistant Jessica Abelson accounting & billing Yolanda Campanotto (800) 443-4974, ext. 705 publisher’s assistant; market research Lori Rodriguez publisher emeritus John B. Abbott EDITORIAL OFFICES 475 Sansome Street, Suite 850, San Francisco, CA 94111 phone (415) 591-0555 fax (415) 591-0733 subscription customer service (800) 600-9642 yogajournal.com CHAIRMAN & CEO Efrem Zimbalist III PRESIDENT & COO Andrew W. Clurman SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT & CFO Brian Sellstrom SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, OPERATIONS Patricia B. Fox VICE PRESIDENT, CONTROLLER Joseph Cohen VICE PRESIDENT, RESEARCH Kristy Kaus © CRUZ BAY PUBLISHING, INC. DHCcare.com 800.DHC.CARE (342.2273) NOVEMBER 2013
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  10. 10. editor’s letter Kelle Wals h crowd-sharing Practicing in a community can multiply the joy—and benefits—of yoga. IT’S A BIT OF A PARADOX: Yoga is an individual practice whose ultimate goal is intimacy with the Self. And yet, many of us are drawn to seek the company of others who share our passion for the practice. The feeling we get from being part of a community, or kula, is an important part of why many of us embrace yoga. French yogis celebrate community in a practice for peace. Events like Solstice Times Square, a day of yoga attended by more than 8,000 people this year, bear this out. So does the growth of yoga lifestyle clothing company Lolë’s series of practice-for-peace events called White Yoga, in which participants come together to do yoga, wearing white as a symbol of their intention to cultivate peace within and carry it out into the world. I witnessed this firsthand when I attended the final event of 2013 this September in Paris. The event, held at the Grand Palais des Champs-Elysées, drew 4,000 Parisians—young and old, men and women, entire families even—who came out for a practice led by Colleen Saidman Yee along with well-known Canadian and French yoga instructors. Accompanied by the Opéra de Paris string players, it was a beautiful and moving experience. As we chanted our final “Oms,” goosebumps climbing up my arms, I had no doubt that the sense of peace that filled the hall would indeed go with each of us when we left. And when I asked my neighbors, in fragmented French, why they had come, the answer was immediate: “Pour faire du yoga dans ce lieu avec tous ces gens bien sur!” To do yoga here, with all of these people, of course. we may be experiencing a time when the kind of deep satsang the sages referred to—the wise company that we have historically associated only with enlightened teachers—may be available in any group of practitioners who are willing to be true to their intention to grow toward a truly awake, Self-less, or God-centered state.” Community doesn’t get much better than that. ✤ Let us know where you find strength in numbers at letters@yogajournal.com. 1 0 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M NOVEMBER 2013 LOLËWOMEN/OMBELINE LEGENDRE As Sally Kempton once wrote in Yoga Journal ’s Wisdom column, “I suspect that
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  12. 12. contributors How do you shake things up when you’re in a rut? I look for ways to change or challenge my perspective; taking a new route to work, trying a new yoga class, or cooking something I’ve never made before. Inversions help too. They literally turn my world upside-down. New York City-based yoga teacher CHRISSY CARTER wrote “Fearless Renew your mind, body, & spirit on a journey to true wellness. Enjoy the Ranchʼs 3,000-acre sanctuary for life-enhancing health, superb cuisine, an array of classes from our fitness professionals (including 15 weekly yoga classes), as well as top visiting yoga teachers: NOVEMBER 9-16 Veera Sanjana, M.S., M.S.W | Gentle Yoga DECEMBER 21-28 Phyllis Pilgrim and Irene Borger Yoga and Writing DECEMBER 24-JANUARY 4 Leslie Kaminoff An Introduction to Breath-Centered Yoga Feast” (page 35). We try to discover what we feel passionate about and let that guide us. We don’t limit ourselves to only shooting one thing; we love shooting a range of subjects. Following our passion this way keeps us from getting stuck. San Francisco Bay Area photographers TRINETTE REED AND CHRIS GRAMLY photographed “Ayurveda Day and Night” (page 68). JANUARY 18-25, 2014 Phyllis Pilgrim and Elana Rosenbaum Yoga and Everyday Mindfulness MARCH 1-8, 2014 Larry Payne Prime of Life Yoga VOTED “WORLD’S BEST DESTINATION SPA” (Travel+Leisure magazine ReadersÕ Polls 2010, 2011 & 2013) 87 7-440-7 7 78 www.rancholapuer ta.com I have an identical twin sister who is a great yoga teacher! When I’m feeling uninspired, I just visit my sister Ann. Sometimes we practice in her home studio. Sometimes I attend one of her classes. Every time I need a little yoga boost, she gives me what I need. JANE AUSTIN, the founder of Mama Tree Prenatal Yoga School in San Francisco, created the prenatal sequence on page 74. 1 2 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M NOVEMBER 2013 FROM TOP: MELINA HAMMER; TRINETTE AND CHRIS; MARY AUSTIN JANUARY 4-11, 2014 Stacy McCarthy |Yoga
  13. 13. talk to us AU G U ST 20 1 3 Thank you so much for welcoming me home with “Passage to India” (August ’13). I had just come back from my first trip to India and retrieved two months of piled-up mail when I found the latest copy of Yoga Journal. In the article, you point out the importance of setting an intention for your trip, but I say go without any intention or expectation, especially if you are planning your first pilgrimage there. Embrace every moment and encounter with an open mind, and drop any thoughts like, “It should be….” Thank you for the inspiration and beautiful photos! SAC H I A I DA , CA N M O R E , A L B E RTA When I read “Movable Feast” ( June ’13), I fell in love with the idea of practicing yoga at a local farm and then eating fresh food, but couldn’t find anything similar near my Midwest home. So I contacted my favorite outdoor yoga instructor and a colleague’s family who owns a strawberry farm, and we created Yoga & Brunch at Berryville Farm on June 23. I prepared a light, nutritious meal for everyone to enjoy after their hour of healing yoga. The participants fell in love with the concept as much as I had, so we are planning another event at an apple orchard for the fall. Thank you for the inspiration! I am writing to thank you for including male representation in your photos. I teach yoga to kindergarteners. In June my students created posters with pictures of themselves in their favorite yoga poses. They also included pictures of adult men and women that I had cut out from past issues of Yoga Journal. It was exciting to hear the children exclaim, “I’m going to do this pose when I grow up!” I think it’s important that boys see pictures of strong, healthy men doing yoga, since yoga is perceived by some as a women’s activity. Thank you for helping me show young children that yoga will help them become healthy adults. M A R I E C RYSTA L KU E N Y, L E E A N N E S P O STO, H A M I LTO N , O N TA R I O R AC I N E , W I S CO N S I N M I C H A E L M AC LO C H L A I N N I love Yoga Journal and have been reading it for many years. However, I was very disappointed in your review of Kino MacGregor’s new book, where the reviewer describes her as “short and compact” as opposed to “long, lean yoga goddesses.” Short and compact? Perhaps “petite and strong” would have been more apt. I expect more from you! SY D N EY, AU ST R A L I A E M M A L I N DA H L , STO C K H O L M , SW E D E N I’ve been reading your magazine for years and love it for its insights and wisdom. I have found lately that the magazine has become more feminine in look and content, and as a male yoga practitioner I feel left out. Where have the male and genderneutral stories gone? twitter.com /yoga_journal 1 4 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M facebook.com /yogajournal What do you think about hot yoga? Warm is hot enough for me! CA N D I BA R BAG A L LO DAV I S, V I A FAC E B O O K Love it! Practice at least twice a week in a hot yoga class. S H E R RY R I C H MO N D P E E KS, V I A FAC E B O O K I sweat enough in a regular yoga class. C L A R I S SA BA N DA , V I A FAC E B O O K I really enjoy hot yoga. I just make sure I drink water before, during, and after. I like to sweat because I think it helps detox. I think the heat loosens up my body too. ST E V E S H A R P E , V I A FAC E B O O K adjective alert gender balance ALL STEAMED UP letters@yoga journal.com It’s bull. In a real yoga class, you warm-up your own body through asana. B E N JA M I N B E E L E R, V I A FAC E B O O K The exercise instructions and advice presented in this magazine are designed for people who are in good health and physically fit. They are not intended to substitute for medical counseling. The creators, producers, participants, and distributors of Yoga Journal disclaim any liability for loss or injury in connection with the exercises shown or the instruction and advice expressed herein. NOVEMBER 2013 FROM TOP LEFT: ARTI AGARWAL/GETTY; JENAY MARTIN/ANJENAYA IMAGERY; JENNIFER MARTINÉ inspired eating
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  15. 15. om bringing your practice to life In the choice to let go of your known way of being, the whole world is revealed to your new eyes.” Danna Faulds I JUKKA RAPO/GETTY IMAGES From the poem “Allow,” published in Go In and In: Poems from the Heart of Yoga NOVEMBER 2013 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M 1 7
  16. 16. om TAKE THE PLUNGE Practice courage on your mat, the better to face risks in your life. Our bravest moments are often the times we feel terrified, painfully vulnerable, and unsure of what might happen next—and yet we act. There is nothing particularly brave about doing something you’re not afraid of or that has a known outcome. It’s when you’re scared that you need courage. It takes courage to allow yourself to be vulnerable and exposed to the unknown, to risk failure, criticism, and rejection. 1 8 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M Why go through that? Because all that really matters in life requires courage. Falling in love. Saying you are sorry. Being with a grieving friend. Sharing your art. Telling the truth. There is no guaranteed safe road to creativity or to intimacy, no risk-free route to integrity or to love. The only way to get there is by the exposed path along the edge of the cliff—where there is always a risk of falling or fail- ing, and where it is difficult to defend yourself from attack. The only way to take that path is with courage. And courage is not just the purview of a lucky few (the big, the strong, the rich, or the young). It’s innate in all of us. We are born vulnerable and with the courage to remain so. But life teaches us to protect ourselves from the unknown, to avoid rejection and failure. And so we forget how to be brave. New Zealand yoga teacher and human rights activist Marianne Elliott is the author of Zen Under Fire, a memoir about her life working as a United Nations peacekeeper in Afghanistan. NOVEMBER 2013 JESSIE JEAN/GETTY IMAGES ESSAY Fortunately, yoga can help you remember. My practice shows me where I’m tense and then how to see past the tension to the fear that often lies behind it; yoga teaches me to trust my breath and my body enough to let go of that protective tension. Yoga reminds me how to take risks, and to honestly answer questions such as “What am I really feeling?” Yoga teaches me to stay where I am, to draw strength and courage from my breath, my body, the ground beneath my feet, and the people with whom I practice. These are the same tools we all need to hold steady when life gets scary. When I step up to speak at a conference, for example, I know that I have tools—like breathing and grounding through my feet— that will help me speak honestly despite my fear. The willingness to practice at all is a form of bravery. Practice courage in these small ways on the mat and it will be there for you when you need it most.
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  18. 18. om STAYING HUMAN Yogi and musician Michael Franti is championing a new cause: a foundation using the power of music to uplift the terminally ill. He’s getting the word out while on tour promoting the eighth studio album from Michael Franti and Spearhead, All People. YJ What’s the connection between music and doing good in the world? MF The first time I performed in a prison, I learned that those guys didn’t want to hear songs about oppression. They wanted music about missing their girlfriends; they wanted to laugh and dance and clap. I had the same experience in Iraq: People wanted music to help them transcend the pain of war. There’s a healing power in music that’s greater than arguments for social change. YJ Was music the birth of your social consciousness? MF When I first started making music, I loved reggae. It’s music you can dance to 2 0 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M Michael Franti, 47, has been practicing yoga since 2001. that also talks about the human struggle. Our school [the University of San Francisco] had investments in South Africa, and a group of us wanted them to divest. I started to write poems about that. Then some friends and I started playing found objects—junk in abandoned lots, metal, and whatever was lying around—and reciting poetry. As I grew, I learned of the power of melody and how it can move emotions across languages. YJ Did yoga influence your new album, All People? MF Since I started my yoga practice in 2001, it’s influenced every aspect of my life, especially my music. This record is a celebration of diversity. One of the things I’ve learned through my yoga practice is to quiet my judgmental mind and be open to new experiences and people from different cultures and different walks of life. All the music on this record was listened to as I was doing my morning yoga practice. Once I would record a song, I would listen to it as I practiced. I wanted to write songs that were inspiring about life, and these songs have been, I guess I could say, tried and tested on my own yoga mat. YJ What else has your yoga practice taught you? MF One of my favorite teachers is Sharon Gannon from Jivamukti. In one of the first classes I ever took, she asked, “How can you tell how deep your yoga practice has become?” People gave all kinds of answers, suggesting really hard poses and being able to hold them for a long time. But she said, “No. The way you can tell is if you say what you mean, and you mean what you say.” That really hit me. And that’s what I am trying to do—find the words and the courage to say them. At the end of the day, yoga is the teacher. If you do the practice, you learn about yourself. P H I L I P A R M O U R NOVEMBER 2013 LAUREN DUKOFF YOGA JOURNAL Tell us about your new foundation. MICHAEL FRANTI It’s called Do It for the Love (doitforthelove.org). It’s like a Make-aWish Foundation for music, where people with serious and life-threatening illnesses can write to us and ask to come to shows by their favorite bands, anyone from Jack Johnson to Metallica to—Michael Franti. We work to get these music lovers to shows to experience the real healing power of music.
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  20. 20. om UNWIND YOUR COMMUTE road warriors Long hours in the driver’s seat take a toll, whether you’re commuting to work or driving a taxi all day. That’s why Andrew Vollo and Klee Walsh, a pair of New York City cabbies and yoga teachers, offer yoga classes for taxi drivers. “Cab drivers sit all day and are under so much stress,” explains Walsh, who completed his 200-hour teacher training in vinyasa yoga in 2010. “As part of my teaching training, I was encouraged to donate yoga to a group that needed it. As a driver, I knew firsthand how much cabbies could benefit.” Walsh and Vollo teach a gentle flowing practice in their weekly, predominantly male, 60-minute Taxi Yoga class at LaGuardia Community College. They eschew chanting and spirituality in favor of breathing and stretching. “These guys are used to putting on a direction signal and having something happen, so we emphasize results,” says Vollo. “Once they try it, they can’t believe how much better they feel.” To survive his own 12-hour shifts, Walsh practices Sama Vritti (equal breath pranayama) in his taxi, which he says is the antidote to road rage. “It becomes a sitting meditation that keeps me relaxed, aware, and rational,” he says. J O E K I TA Yoga classes keep New York City cab drivers from getting bent out of shape. SHOULDER CIRCLES Smoothly bring both shoulders up toward the ears and then roll them forward, down, and back. Inhale as you roll shoulders up, and exhale as you roll them down and back; then reverse direction. SUPINE PELVIC TILTS Lie on your back, knees bent and feet on your mat. Inhaling slowly, tilt the hip points away from the ribs, creating space between the low back and floor. Exhale while tilting hip points toward ribs, pressing your low back into the mat. WRIST CIRCLES With a straight spine, extend arms in front of you. Flex the wrists to alternately point fingers up and down. Then slowly rotate the wrists first clockwise, then counterclockwise. ALTERNATING LEG EXTENSIONS Lie on your back, inhale, and hug the right knee to the chest while extending the left leg on the floor, curling the toes toward you. Exhale and switch legs. Slowly alternate leg positions in conjunction with the breath. THAT’S A WRAP Created by yoga teacher Laura Guccione, the Spinal Support cushion by Yogawrap affixes to any car seat or office chair. It subtly supports the spine, giving you a gentle reminder to sit up straight. “It’s designed to stimulate and train the core muscles into proper alignment,” says Guccione, whose teaching is influenced by Iyengar Yoga. $35, yogawrap.com 2 2 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M NOVEMBER 2013 ILLUSTRATION: GREG CLARKE; PHOTO: DAVID MARTINEZ NEWS & TRENDS Taxi Yoga teacher Klee Walsh offers these simple moves to relieve driver’sseat stiffness.
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  22. 22. om WELLNESS acid test If you suffer from heartburn, adjusting your yoga practice can bring relief. If you’ve ever had butterflies in your stomach before a big presentation or important test, you know what stress can do to the digestive system. In fact, scientists in the emerging field of neurogastroenterology—which studies the connections between brain and gut—call the network of neurons lining the gut the “second brain.” This helps explain why restorative yoga postures, which relieve anxiety and calm body and mind, can be particularly helpful for taming the symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease, also known as GERD. GERD happens when the sphincter at the bottom of the esophagus doesn’t work as it should, allowing stomach contents to leak up into the esophagus, causing irritation. Yoga may help relieve the symptoms, which include the burning sensation in the chest or throat known as heartburn or acid indigestion. If you have heartburn, it’s a good idea to wait at least two hours after a meal before practicing. Vigorous exercise and “crunching” actions can sometimes trigger symptoms in susceptible people; let yoga’s focus on balancing relaxation with effort be your guide. If inversions aggravate your symptoms, substitute a restorative posture like Viparita Karani (Legs-up-the-Wall Pose). And if lying flat on the floor causes discomfort, elevating your head and Try these postures to help ease heartburn. SUPPORTED BOUND ANGLE POSE Use a block to prop a bolster at a 45-degree angle. Sit in front of the bolster and recline back. Bring soles of feet together and open knees out to the sides. Support thighs and knees. Relax arms at your sides. Breathe comfortably for 5–10 minutes. 24 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M LEFT-SIDE-LYING RELAXATION POSE Lying on the right side has been shown to aggravate heartburn, while Ayurveda holds that lying on the left side helps digestion. Lie on your left side with knees comfortably bent. Place support under your head. Breathe for 5–10 minutes. SUPPORTED CHILD’S POSE Stack two or three blankets on a bolster. Kneel in front of the bolster and open knees about hip-width apart. Ease the upper body down onto the bolster, turning your head to one side and relaxing your arms. Breathe comfortably for 5–10 minutes; then turn your head the other way. EXTENDED EXHALATIONS Sit tall, relax, and turn your attention to your breath. Mentally count the length of your inhalations and exhalations, and try to make them equal length. Next, make the exhalation one or two counts longer than the inhalation, or up to twice as long. NOVEMBER 2013 PHOTO: ERIC AUDRAS/GETTY IMAGES; ILLUSTRATIONS: DONNA GRETHEN shoulders with folded blankets can help. CA R O L K R U CO F F
  23. 23. om spiced orange cranberry sauce Makes 6 servings 1 organic orange 1 cup water 12 ounces fresh cranberries 5 Medjool dates, pitted and diced 2 teaspoons fresh minced ginger 1 Zest about half the orange and reserve the zest. Cut the ends off the orange, then cut away the peel and outer membrane of fruit in wide strips. Holding the orange over a bowl to catch the juice, cut between the inner membranes and fruit to release the segments into the bowl. FOOD SUPER BERRY Put healthy cranberries on your holiday menu, without added sugar. 2 In a medium saucepan, bring the water to a boil. Add the orange segments (including any juice), cranberries, dates, and ginger. Reduce the heat and simmer 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until sauce is thick. Stir in the orange zest, and refrigerate until ready to serve. to fall’s naturally sweet fruits and vegetables to balance per cup, cranberries’ role in heart and urinary tract the tartness of cranberries in holiday dishes. “My cook- health is well documented: New research suggests that ing philosophy is to use whole, fresh, seasonal foods, their juice may be as effective as probiotics for main- prepared without a lot of ingredients,” she says. “So I taining good digestive health. Another recent study might sprinkle fresh cranberries over yams or delicata shows that the tannins in cranberries may slow the squash and bake them. Or combine them in a sauce with absorption of carbohydrates, helping to regulate blood apples, pears, or dates, which add sweetness.” sugar. But the tart berries are often paired with a large Lauberth’s date-sweetened cranberry sauce, above, helping of refined sugar to temper their bite, making has just the right balance of sweet and tart, with ginger them something less than a health food. and orange zest for added flavor. Be sure to use an Sonnet Lauberth, a Seattle, Washington-based holis- organic orange, Lauberth says, since you’re consuming tic health coach and the creator of the seasonal food the peel. If you can’t find one, you can omit the zest blog In Sonnet’s Kitchen (insonnetskitchen.com), turns from the recipe. C H A R I T Y F E R R E I R A 26 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M NOVEMBER 2013 PATRICIA GRANLUND/GETTY IMAGES PACKED WITH NEARLY 15 MILLIGRAMS of vitamin C
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  31. 31. eating wisely PHOTOS: SHERI GIBLIN; FOOD STYLIST: ERIN QUON by Chrissy Car ter fearless feast Even for confident cooks, Thanksgiving dinner can be the most anxietyprovoking meal of the year. Yoga can help. IN MY DREAM, I’m sitting on my mat awaiting instructions from a panel of my yoga teachers. I’m at an Iyengar Yoga assessment, for which I’m completely unprepared, and I am terrified. After what seems an eternity, they deliver my task. I’m to carve a Thanksgiving turkey right there on my mat using the props in front of me: a plastic fork and knife. You might say I carry some anxiety about cooking Thanksgiving dinner. »
  32. 32. ea t i ng w isely the turkey wasn’t fully cooked, the side dishes were cold, and I sat down at the table feeling totally defeated. The pressure to replicate the magic of my childhood memories, combined with the fear of failing, turns out to be the perfect recipe for a really bad time. FEAR OF FAILURE maple-roasted brussels sprouts MAKES 6 TO 8 SERVINGS 2 1 ∕4 1 ∕4 2 1 1 ∕2 pounds Brussels sprouts cup balsamic vinegar cup olive oil tablespoons maple syrup teaspoon salt teaspoon pepper 1 Preheat oven to 400°F. Trim the ends of the Brussels sprouts, and remove any bruised outer leaves. Cut in half lengthwise. 2 Place on a baking sheet, and mix well with balsamic vinegar, olive oil, maple syrup, salt, and pepper. 3 Spread out into a single layer, and roast for 30 to 35 minutes, stirring once or twice, until soft and caramelized. 3 6 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M I can still smell my mother’s kitchen on Thanksgiving morning. The fragrance of her homemade pies mixed with the aroma of the turkey roasting in the oven created an air of anticipation that could be felt throughout the house. My sister and I would watch the Thanksgiving Day parade on TV in our pajamas and would periodically be called into the kitchen to help my mother stir a pot or lick a bowl. The whole day was spent waiting for the moment we were called to the table. By the time dinner was ready, we were practically giddy as we loaded our plates with my mother’s delicious food in the most anticipated meal of the year. Now that the torch of cooking the family’s holiday dinner has passed to me, my anticipation has morphed into a recurring anxiety about living up to my memory of all those Thanksgivings past. Last year, Whether in the kitchen or on the mat, fear is like a big bucket of ice dumped on the spark of adventure. Fear leaves us either too much in our own heads to access our inherent creativity and intuition—or so paralyzed that we convince ourselves we’re not even capable of trying. Fear seduces us into a place of complacency, inviting us to avoid what scares us in favor of dwelling in the comfort of our familiar beliefs. Fear prevents us from making mistakes and gaining the kind of wisdom that arises from taking risks. Patanjali’s classic text, the Yoga Sutra, offers several accessible tools to manage our fears. Foremost among them are practice and detachment. Practice, as outlined in Sutra 1.14, includes three aspects: We must practice for a long time, without break, and in all earnestness. This last one means we have to believe what we’re practicing is actually possible. Sutras 1.15 and 1.16 describe detachment, which essentially means that we understand that our identity is not dependent on our success or failure. This knowledge leads to freedom and a very real connection to the present moment. Which brings me back to Thanksgiving dinner. Once I came to grips with the fact that the truth of who I am does not depend on my producing a flawless meal, my anxiety lifted. Practicing— continuously showing up in the face of real or potential failure—is trusting that the process is the goal. Ultimately, it’s the intention behind my cooking, the effort I’ve devoted to the meal, and the heart I’ve poured into each dish that will make the meal a success. I’ve come to think that a botched attempt at cooking Thanksgiving dinner may actually be another opportunity to continued on page 42; recipes on next page NOVEMBER 2013
  33. 33. ea t i ng w isely sweet potato–ginger soup MAKES 6 TO 8 SERVINGS 3 1 2 1 large sweet potatoes or yams (about 4 pounds) 2-inch piece fresh ginger onions, roughly chopped clove garlic, minced 2 3 1 1∕2 1 1 ∕2 tablespoons olive oil cups vegetable broth cups water teaspoon salt teaspoon pepper 1 Peel sweet potatoes and cut into 1 ∕2-inch cubes. 2 Juice 1 to 3 tablespoons of fresh ginger (you can use a juicer, a grater, or a garlic press). Set aside. 3 Sauté onions and garlic in olive oil over medium heat until translucent, about 10 minutes. Add sweet potatoes and cook, stirring frequently, for another 10 to 15 minutes. 4 Add broth and water, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes or until sweet potatoes are soft. 5 Purée with an immersion blender, or transfer in small batches to a blender and purée until smooth. 6 Add salt and pepper. Stir in 1 tablespoon ginger juice and taste. Add more as desired. 3 8 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M
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  35. 35. eati ng w ise ly Go this far, and you can actually unplug. homemade apple pie Making pie crust is a great way to explore the yogic concepts of practice and detachment. The dough needs to be just the right temperature in order to be rolled out: When it’s too cold it won’t budge; when it’s too warm it gets sticky; when it’s been handled too much it will contract slightly as you roll. I like to have store-bought dough in my refrigerator as a backup. Then I feel invincible—just the attitude you need to make a pie from scratch. MAKES 8 TO 10 SERVINGS FOR PIE CRUST 2 1∕2 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon sugar 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted cold butter, cut in small cubes 1 ∕4–1∕2 cup ice water FOR APPLE FILLING 8 Gala or Golden Delicious apples, peeled and sliced 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 2 ∕3 cup sugar 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1 ∕2 teaspoon nutmeg Pinch of salt 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small cubes FOR EGG WASH 1 egg Splash of milk Our small group adventures in India may not guarantee eternal bliss. But defnitely an incredible curry. 800 970 7299 IntrepidTravel.com 4 0 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M Flour your work area and rolling pin. 6 Roll out one portion of dough, turning it as you go, until you have a circle 11 inches in diameter and 1∕4 inch thick. For easy transfer into the pie dish, roll the dough over the rolling pin, then unroll it into the pie plate, fitting it gently. Roll out the second portion into an 11-inch circle and place onto baking sheet. Refrigerate both while you make the apple filling. 7 Preheat oven to 425°F. Place apples in a bowl. Add flour, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Toss until the apples are well coated. 8 Pour the apple mixture into the pie dish. Scatter the butter over the apples. Lay the circle of dough over the top, and trim off any excess. Crimp the dough together with your fingers so the pie is tightly sealed. You can decorate the edges using the prongs of a fork. Cut 4 slits in the top so steam can escape. 9 In a small bowl, beat egg and milk together with a fork. Brush the top crust evenly with the egg mixture, and place the pie dish on a baking sheet to catch any overflowing juices. 10 Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375°F and bake for another 30 to 35 minutes. The pie will be golden brown. If the crust starts to burn, you can lay a piece of foil over the top. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool before serving. All recipes courtesy of Chrissy Carter. 1 Place flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor. Pulse until combined. 2 Add the butter to the food processor, and pulse until the butter is the size of peas. Do not overpulse. 3 With food processor running, add 1∕4 to 1 ∕2 cup ice-cold water. Stop the processor when the dough starts to pull together but still appears floury. Do not overmix. 4 Divide the dough in half. Form each half into a ball, then flatten out into a disc with the palm of your hand. Wrap each disc with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 20 minutes. 5 Butter the inside of a 9-inch pie dish, and line a baking sheet with waxed paper. NOVEMBER 2013
  36. 36. 1 se ls ly a ve al re le ic nc in i ne Cl d to thio ie ta ud lu st d g oo bl The inside story on detoxification. Glutathione. It’s inside every cell in your body and an essential molecule that protects cells from the damaging effects of oxidative stress and toxins.* Setria® Glutathione is a tripeptide manufactured through a patented fermentation process that can help replenish the body’s reserves that may be depleted as a result of poor diet, stress, pollution and even the natural aging process.* Setria is also pure, vegetarian and allergen-free. If you’re looking for nutritional support to help lighten your body’s toxic load, look for supplements formulated with Setria.* For more information about Setria® visit www.setriaglutathione.com Follow Setria® 1) Enhanced glutathione levels in blood and buccal cells by oral glutathione supplementation. J.P. Richie. Presented at Experimental Biology, April 22, 2013. *These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Look for these fine brands with Setria® Glutathione in their formulations. Setria® is a registered trademark of KYOWA HAKKO BIO CO., LTD. Copyright ©2013 KYOWA HAKKO U.S.A., INC. All Rights Reserved.
  37. 37. Tis Cold Season, Catch... eati ng w ise ly continued from page 36 live your yoga. Some of the best memories are born of the times when nothing goes according to plan—when you’re forced to surrender. It’s often in those moments that you get to know your own resilience and experience a true connection to the moment. One year my apple pie fell apart, and I had no backup plan and a table full of guests awaiting dessert. I decided to scoop out the apple filling and spoon it over some vanilla ice cream. No one knew the difference; in fact, it was a huge hit! It’s often when things fall apart that you realize just how much you limit yourself with your own expectations. Opening yourself up to life often results in experiencing something greater than you could have imagined. SAFETY NET Delicious, berry-flavored Zinc Elderberry Lozenges boost the immune system and soothe the throat. Get the same results with Thera Zinc Throat Spray. Tis Cold Season Don’t Catch Anything Else! Call for free samples 1-800-448-1448 www.QuantumHealth.com point because there was no connection to the approach. It’s the process of getting into the pose, rather than the pose itself, that reveals the nature of the asana. Cooking is the same: True appreciation of a dish comes from a connection to the process that made it. Learn to let go of your expectation that you need to whip up elaborate food just because it’s Thanksgiving and this can free you from the pitfalls of self-inflicted suffering. It’s perfectly okay to opt out of a challenging recipe if it doesn’t feel right. I’ve learned over the years to ease up on myself by swapping out difficult, timeconsuming recipes for simple, foolproof ones, such as incredible, crispy roasted Brussels sprouts with maple syrup and balsamic vinegar (see page 36), which take about five minutes to prepare before you pop them in the oven. Cooking, like yoga, is about connecting to yourself in the moment. Asana instructions such as “stand equally on all four corners of your feet” become useful only when you can feel them in your own body. Similarly, a recipe is only a guide- Taking risks in the kitchen is about listening to the motivations that drive your efforts. If I’m considering a challenging recipe, such as an apple pie with pastry made from scratch, and I can feel myself getting excited about the process, I go for it. I know that no matter how It’s often when things fall it turns out, it will have been worth it because it was my commitment apart that you realize just to the adventure, not the result, how much you limit yourself that inspired me to be daring in the with your own expectations. first place. If, on the other hand, I stare at the recipe with a sense of dread or expectation, or if I’m hoping that the finished product will prove line. Great cooking happens when you something to myself or to others, then listen to your gut, trust your instincts, and I know that no matter how it turns out, make the recipe your own. Use the Sweet Potato-Ginger Soup (see page 38) as a safe I will not enjoy the fruits of my efforts. Practice your yoga in the kitchen by place to experiment and decide for yourtuning into how you feel as you create self how much spice to add. This year, I’m not nervous. I know that your Thanksgiving menu. Anxiety, doubt, and fear can all be felt in the body and are no matter how the meal turns out, the signs that you need to reevaluate your people who matter most in my life will approach. Focus your attention on the celebrate the love and effort I put into our process of executing what you can man- shared experience. I know that what I’ll remember most is the attitude I choose to age to the best of your abilities. In yoga class, when you can’t get into a bring to the kitchen and the wisdom I’ll challenging pose, the practice is to focus gain from opening up and letting go. ✤ on what you can do and then to do it well. Flailing toward an end result will get you Chrissy Carter is a yoga teacher and writer nowhere, and if somehow you arrive in based in New York City. Learn more at the pose by luck, you will have missed the chrissycarter.com. NOVEMBER 2013
  38. 38. by Ni k ki Coste llo basics head-of-the-knee pose janu sirsasana | janu = knee; sirsa = head; asana = posture ▼ “I’M SO INFLEXIBLE I can barely touch my toes.” As a yoga teacher, I hear this again and again. I’ve even seen people spontaneously bend over to reach for their feet to demonstrate their tightness. I try to explain that you don’t have to be flexible when you start practicing yoga: The act of doing yoga helps you build the flexibility and strength you need. Even if you can easily get your hands to your toes in forward-bending poses, that’s not necessarily a good measure of your overall flexibility. What really matters are the actions you take to get them there. If you focus on going deeply into a forward bend, such as the seated forward bend Janu Sirsasana (Head-of-the-Knee Pose), and your hamstrings and glutes are tight, you’ll bend from the spine: The tailbone will tuck under, the upper back will round, and the backs of the knees will pop off the floor. In this case, even though you might still be able to reach your toes, you’d be missing the true benefit of the pose. The goal of a forward bend is not, in fact, to “bend” but instead to fully extend and lengthen your spine while stretching the back of your body—your hamstrings, gluteal muscles, and spinal a deeper stretch After practicing Janu Sirsasana, a one-legged forward bend, you’ll be better prepared for a full, two-legged stretch. Practice the pose several times on each side, and then stretch both legs out and join them in Dandasana (Staff Pose). Reach for both feet and see if you are able to bend forward more easily in Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend). • For detailed instructions on more poses, go to yogajournal.com/poses. watch Fine-tune your practice of Janu Sirsasana with an online video. Find it at yogajournal.com/livemag. 4 4 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M NOVEMBER 2013
  39. 39. LENGTHEN YOUR SPINE BEND YOUR ELBOWS NOVEMBER 2013 FLEX YOUR FOOT YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M 4 5
  40. 40. basi cs muscles—to the extent that’s appropriate for you. Although you don’t want to bend your spine in Janu Sirsasana, there are three joints you do want to bend in the pose: the hips, the knee of the bent leg, and the elbows. Learning to bend in all the right places allows you to create length and extension in the spine. Bending at the hip joints is crucial in any forward bend. It allows the torso to extend forward while the spinal muscles stay relaxed. If your hamstrings and glutes are tight and you feel your tailbone tucking under, sit up on a folded blanket or two. Feel as though you are sitting directly on top of your sitting bones and that your pelvis is tilting forward. Having one knee bent in Janu Sirsasana makes it different from other seated forward bends. The action of bending one leg helps alleviate the pull of tight hamstrings and gluteal muscles on that side of your body. The added mobility allows you to extend the abdomen farther forward. The final bend in the pose is at the elbows. When you clasp your foot (or a strap) and bend your elbows, the pull of the arms helps lift the chest upward, which lengthens the upper spine. And gently pulling the shoulders back helps maintain this extension. Practicing the variations taught here will help you find extension in your spine. In the first variation (see Step 1), focus on balancing your weight evenly on both sitting bones and on stretching your arms upward. Lengthen the sides of the waist equally to lift the spine and tone the abdomen. In the second variation (see Step 2), focus on bending at the hips as you lean forward and hold your foot. Firm your arms to lift your chest and extend it forward as you press the back of your legs to the floor. In the final variation (see Final Pose), lengthen your spine completely from the bottom to the top. Bending your elbows out to the sides allows the chest to further expand and frees the upper spine to move inward toward the heart. 4 6 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M Reach your arms tall and press down through your sitting bones. stretch the sides and lift the spine SET IT UP ❉ Resting your hips on a blanket, sit upright, and extend both legs forward. ❉ Bend the right knee, pressing the heel into the inner right thigh, with the toes touching the inner left thigh. ❉ Keep the left leg straight, resting on the center of the calf with the toes pointing up. REFINE As you inhale, extend the arms up. Bring the arms toward the back of the ears, and then take a deeper, fuller breath to extend the arms completely and lift the torso. Extending the spine and stretching the back body in a seated forward bend can have a calming effect. Practicing these poses can improve digestion and soothe the nervous system. You experience these benefits by practicing a progressive series of actions: stretching and releasing tension in the back of the body, bending at the joints with skill and attention, and Keep both sides of the pelvis in line and distribute your weight evenly on both sitting bones. FINISH Lift the bent-leg side of the torso with a little more effort and attention to ensure that the torso lengthens evenly and that your spine is lifted. Create space in the abdomen by pressing the thighs down as you stretch the arms up. Move your shoulder blades in toward the spine and your abdomen back and up under the ribs. Maintain this position for a few breaths to energize your spine. lengthening the spine before folding forward. When you practice Janu Sirsasana this way, not only will touching your toes become easier, but you’ll be getting the benefits of fully extending your spine and expanding your chest. Nikki Costello is a certified Iyengar Yoga teacher living in New York City. NOVEMBER 2013 PHOTOS: DAVID MARTINEZ; MODEL: JENNIFER LANE; STYLIST: LYN HEINEKEN; HAIR/MAKEUP: RACINE CHRISTENSEN; TOP: ALO; LEGGINGS: ELISABETTA ROGIANI; BLANKET: BAREFOOT YOGA CO. ST E P 1
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  43. 43. basics ST E P 2 Keep lengthening, not rounding, the spine. extend forward to reach the foot SET IT UP ❉ Resting your hips on a blanket, sit upright and extend both legs forward. ❉ Bend the right knee, pressing the heel into the inner right thigh, and letting the toes touch the inner left thigh. ❉ Keep the left leg straight, resting on the center of the calf with the toes pointing up. ❉ Inhale and extend the arms upward. Exhale, and reach forward to hold the left foot with both hands, or loop a strap around the foot. REFINE Pull strongly on the foot, as you press it into your hands or the strap to lift your torso up. Straighten and fully extend both your arms. Press the entire back of your left leg to the floor, from the upper thigh to the back of the heel, while also pressing the right leg downward. FINISH Lift from the waist to the armpits to create equal length on the sides of your body. Move the back ribs in toward the chest and lift the chest even higher. Continue pressing the outer right thigh and knee down and turn from the right side of the waist until your entire torso is facing forward. Hold this variation for several breaths to lengthen the front of the spine and make the back more concave. elements of practice In hatha yoga asanas, the back of the body is referred to as the west (paschim in Sanskrit) and the front of the body as the east (purva). Both sides are given equal importance and reflect balance and harmony in the body. The sun rises in the east, energizing our bodies for the activity of the day, and sets in the west to prepare our bodies for rest and sleep. When you practice forward-bending poses and stretch the back of your body, you will discover that they can help you relax, become quiet, and even sleep better. NOVEMBER 2013 500-hour ayurvedic yoga teacher training Ready to take your yoga teaching to the next level? Gain new skills for guiding groups and offering private sessions tailored to your clients’ needs. Learn how to balance individual constitutions using doshic principles. Discover Ayurvedic techniques for teaching according to the seasons. do what you love kripalu.org/ayurvedaschool 800.848.8702 mission driven, donor supported stockbridge, massachusetts
  44. 44. basics F I N A L P OS E janu sirsasana SET IT UP ❉ Sit upright and extend both legs forward. ❉ Bend the right knee, pressing the heel into the inner right thigh, and letting the toes touch the inner left thigh. ❉ Keep the left leg straight, resting it on the center of the calf with the toes pointing up. ❉ Inhale and extend the arms up. ❉ Exhale and reach forward to hold the left foot with both hands or loop a strap around the foot. REFINE Press both legs down as you lift the waist toward the armpit. Use your inhalation to draw the abdomen back and up while you spread and lift the come home to yourself. chest. Maintain the steady effort of the legs and arms as you exhale and stay in the pose. Inhale again and extend the front of your body forward until the hips fold more deeply. On your exhalation, bend your elbows directly to the sides and broaden the collarbones and chest. Keep the elbows lifted and wide apart. FINISH With each breath lengthen the front of the spine and move the back muscles into the body. Now the knee, hips, shoulders, elbows, and wrists are all bending to support your spine to extend. ✤ Fully extend your spine as you fold forward. Juggling lifeÕs demands can make it challenging to stay centered. To get back to yourself, sometimes you have to take time out. ThatÕs what the Kripalu R&R Retreat is all about. No matter which yoga classes, inspiring workshops, or outdoor activities you choose, it always adds up to the same optimize your pose Explore these modifications of Janu Sirsasana. thing: a happier, healthier you. R&R Retreat come home to yourself. kripalu.org/rr or 800.741.7353 mission driven, donor supported stockbridge, massachusetts To open your hips Move the thigh and knee of your bent leg farther out to the side, while still keeping the outer knee down. To relieve knee pain Place a rolled-up sock or a strap behind the back of your bent knee to make more space for the joint. To lengthen your spine If you can reach your toes with your hands, reach beyond the foot and clasp one wrist with the opposite hand. To quiet the mind Place a blanket or bolster across your shin and rest your head on it. Relax here with even breathing for 2 minutes. NOVEMBER 2013
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  46. 46. Find a yoga teacher Become a yoga teacher Many Paths, One Yoga Alliance yogaalliance.org
  47. 47. living yoga by Ka te Ho lcombe ultimate practice Yoga promises to free us from suffering—even the kind that comes from life’s most difficult experiences. SUBMAN/GETTY IMAGES WHEN PEOPLE ASK ME why I became a yoga teacher, I tell them it’s because I was lucky enough to have been hit by a motorcycle while studying social work in southern India 22 years ago. But that is only part of the story. It is also true that after the accident, my teacher, friend, and mentor, Mary Louise Skelton, a longtime student of yoga master T. Krishnamacharya, took me to see his son, T. K.V. Desikachar, to help me get better. Not only did I recover from my injuries, but my chronic insomnia and headaches also disappeared. But what really inspired me to teach yoga to those who are sick and suffering and make yoga’s tools accessible to others through my work at Healing Yoga Foundation was spending the last three weeks of Mary Louise’s life with her a few years later. It was then, sitting with her each day as she was dying from metastatic breast cancer, that I really “got it.” I had understood how yoga helped me heal after my acci dent and how it could help others with physical issues. I knew that yoga could help one become stronger and more flexible, sleep better, and feel more relaxed. But what astounded me as I sat with Mary Lou each day was how yoga was such a positive support for her, even in the process of dying. Here was a woman in her early sixties who had a loving husband and family, grandchildren, devoted students, and much she still wanted to see and do. She certainly did not want to die. She was also in considerable pain. And yet, knowing her death was imminent, she was not suffering. We had many talks those days—about life, yoga, and how delicious butterscotch was, all the important stuff. In these conNOVEMBER 2013 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M 5 3
  48. 48. l i vi n g yo g a versations, she was so clear, so calm, so present. It was evident to me how much her yoga practice was supporting her in the dying process, and that this was the result of her years of dedicated practice. BEYOND THE BODY Tada drastuh svarupe avasthanam As a result of yoga or sustained, focused attention, the Self or Seer is firmly established in its own form, and we act from a place from our own true, authentic Self. YOGA SUTRA I.3 How is it that yoga can be such a powerful support, even when the body is not able to do asana practice or even to sit to do certain breathing practices? First and foremost, yoga is for the mind, not the body. (Though asana and other practices involving the body can be a useful way to influence and refine the mind, and the body can certainly benefit.) Yoga Sutra 1.3 says that as a result of yoga or sustained, focused attention, the Self or Seer (drastuh) is established (avasthanam) in its own form (svarupe). In other words, by focusing and refining the mind through yoga, you gain clearer perception and learn to distinguish the mind, body, and emotions from your true essence or Self. You come to know that Self and act from that place of the Self, thus reducing your experience of suffering. Tatah pratyakcetanadhigamah api antarayabhavasca Then, the inner conscious is revealed, we come to know the true Self, and our obstacles are reduced. YOGA SUTRA I.29 In Sutra 1.29, Patanjali tells us that as a result of yoga practice (tatah), and specifically the surrender to a higher power (isvara pranidhana), our inner conscious (pratyakcetana) is revealed (adhigamah), and we experience a reduction (abhava) in the obstacles (antaraya) we may face. Patanjali lists nine potential obstacles in the next sutra, beginning with illness 5 4 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M or disease (vyadhi), but tells us that they need be obstacles for us only if the mind is disturbed. If we can connect with the Self, we are less likely to be disturbed and will therefore suffer less. If it sounds simple, it isn’t. It’s one thing to understand Patanjali’s logic and promise of kaivalyam, or independence from suffering. It’s entirely another to practice consistently enough to actually experience it. But this is why we practice. The tools Patanjali offers throughout the Yoga Sutra are designed to help quiet all the distractions of the mind, including patterns and ways of thinking that may be dragging you down. As you go through this process, you begin to know the difference between your fluctuating and impermanent mind, body, and emotions, and something else deep within you. When you recognize the impermanent parts of you as distinct and separate from that steady, quiet, knowing place of your true Self (which Patanjali describes as pure, unchanging, and permanent), you begin to cultivate a greater connection with that authentic Self. From this place of connection, you can observe your emotions and reactions and recognize them as separate from your true nature, valid and painful though they may be. This is the promise of yoga. And while the process of getting there may not be simple, the end result is easy to understand: We feel better. YOGA IN ACTION For the last several years, I have taught yoga as part of the Commonweal Cancer Help Program in Bolinas, California. I work with many people with cancer on these retreats, and I work one-on-one with people with cancer and other lifethreatening illness almost every day in my work at Healing Yoga Foundation. At the start of each retreat, I sit with the participants to give them an orientation to yoga and what we will be practicing together. It is always a diverse group in terms of gender, ages, types of cancers, and stages of disease. Many have done some form of yoga, and all have some idea of what yoga is. Some are concerned they will not be able to “do” the postures. Many are dealing with pain, anxiety, fear, and side effects from treatment. Often their bodies have changed drastically, assaulted by disease, surgery, and treatment, and they cannot do what they used to. “How can I do yoga when I am in pain?” “What is the point?” and many other questions along these lines arise. What I tell them is that while I am trained to adapt the practice we do as a group to each of their individual needs, and will make sure they are safe and comfortable; and while I surely hope to help increase their comfort and reduce their pain and other physical, mental, and emotional symptoms, the real point of what we are doing together is something very different. My real goal, I tell them, is to help empower them with tools and practices they can do anywhere, in any circumstance—waiting in the doctor’s office, getting a scan, receiving a chemo infusion, riding the bus. These practices can quiet the distractions of the mind and help each person connect to that still, deep place within, that resource of wisdom and inner knowing, great resilience and strength, deep joy and peace, and the shining light of one’s own, true authentic Self. Yes, I tell them, the many practices of yoga, including stretching, movement, deep breathing, and meditation can be wonderful in and of themselves, but each is just one of many tools offered by Patanjali to help us reach the real goal of yoga: to distinguish between the mind and the Self, to connect with and act from that place of the Self, and, as a result, to suffer less. I also tell them the story of sitting with Mary Lou each day—about her incredible grace, clarity, and calm, and of seeing yoga work in a way that changed my life forever. No matter what your physical challenges or your time of life, yoga’s tools can help you connect with the Self and face even the most difficult challenges with peace and equanimity. As my teacher, T.K.V. Desikachar, used to tell me that his father, T. Krishnamacharya, would say, “As long as there is breath, we can do yoga.” ✤ Kate Holcombe is the founder and executive director of the Healing Yoga Foundation in San Francisco. Learn more at healingyoga.org. NOVEMBER 2013
  49. 49. master class 1 w it h A nni e Car penter shape shifter Let the ebb and flow of your breath help you find your way into this challenging forward bend. THE FINAL PHASE of Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana (Extended Hand-to-Big-Toe Pose) is a doozy. After five breaths of balancing on one leg with the other leg lifted off the floor at 90 degrees, you forward bend over the lifted leg, bringing your shin toward your nose and nose toward your shin. Is it really possible to do this with a sense of ease and grace? you ask. With practice, it is. It begins, like so many things in yoga, with the breath. The pose requires open hamstrings, strong core muscles, and balance, for sure, but also a palpable understanding of the breath and how it supports transitions into and out of the poses. Practicing this pose with awareness can teach you how using your breath can lead to depth and ease. Try this: Sit tall on a cushion or blanket, and bring attention to your breath. Begin Ujjayi Pranayama (Victorious Breath) with your inhalations and exhalations balanced in length and volume. Then begin to add a short pause after your exhalations. Gradually you’ll notice that as you inhale, the breath moves down, and the front body—from the pubic bone up to the top of your sternum—subtly expands, moving your spine in the direction of a backbend. As you exhale, the spine tends to round as your breath moves up and out. If you continue to breathe like this, you’ll find that the base of your pubic bone moves back at the top of the inhalations and your tailbone gently curls under at the end of your exhalations. If you can comfortably pause after your exhalations, you’ll experience a natural hollowing in your belly and a lift from the base of your pelvis. This natural pattern of breathing is the reason that we exhale when we come into forward bends and inhale as we come out of them. Next, try it on all fours, in Cat-Cow Pose. As you inhale, gaze up, creating a slight backbend. Exhale, and round your spine, drawing your head down and curling your tailbone under. Continue this pattern, and again, try pausing briefly after the exhalations. You’ll observe a natural lift in your belly and a deepening into the round shape without any more effort. » 2 Warm-up your hamstrings and hips while you hollow and lift the belly. 3 Build power in your core as you simultaneously warm up your spine and legs. 4 Set up a strong foundation before you move into the forward-bending phase of the pose. Do yoga with Annie Carpenter at the San Francisco Yoga Journal Conference, January 16–20, 2014! Learn more at yjevents.com. 5 6 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M NOVEMBER 2013 PHOTOS: KATRINE NALEID; MODEL: ANNIE CARPENTER; STYLIST: MICAH BISHOP/ARTIST UNTIED ; HAIR/MAKEUP: RACINE CHRISTENSEN; TOP: PRANA; BOTTOM: ELISABETTA ROGIANI Learn to create an internal lift of the pelvic floor without overworking the abdominals.
  50. 50. Ride the wave of your breath in this version of Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana. NOVEMBER 2013 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M 5 7
  51. 51. ma ster cla ss You’ll use your breath in a similar way to support you in the last phase of Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana. As you inhale, you’ll focus on lengthening your spine; as you exhale, you’ll feel the breath initiate the movement of curling your tailbone under until your spine naturally folds over your leg. As you work dynamically with the breath and pose, you’ll also find your breath capacity increasing. You’ll be able to take a fuller inhalation and really get all the breath out as you exhale. Over time your capacity to pause and retain the breath after both the inhalation and the exhalation will begin to grow as well. Explore inhaling fully and then pause. As you retain the breath, you might sense your pose expand with no more effort. In the pause after the exhalation you’ll feel your belly hollow and, subsequently, a sense of lightness and ease in your body. You might even find yourself naturally moving more deeply into the pose. BEFORE YOU BEGIN Before you do the sequence below, try the breathwork exploration described above. Then come to Tadasana (Mountain Pose) and warm up with a few simple rounds of Surya Namaskar (Sun Salutation). Be sure to sync the breath with each movement. UDDIYANA BANDHA Upward Abdominal Lock Tap into the natural core lift that a complete exhalation brings. Uddiyana is translated as “flying up.” In this posture, you’ll create an internal lift of your pelvic floor and abdominal muscles, which you will sustain by holding the breath. At first you’ll feel as though you are working the abdominal muscles, but you’ll find that as you become more aware of how to use your breath, less physical effort is needed to maintain the lift. Stand with your feet wider than your hips and with your legs and feet slightly rotated open. Inhale, and lift your arms; exhale, bend your knees, and place your hands high on your thighs. Keep pressing your breath out and straighten your arms, grounding your thighs and stabilizing your 5 8 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M torso. When you are completely empty of air, draw your pelvic floor together and up, pull your belly back and up, and hold here for as long as you comfortably can. Then release all of the lifting actions, inhale, and slowly stand. Take a recovery breath and repeat twice more. Over time, you will be able to hold your exhalation longer and feel a greater internal lift. The feeling is deep and exhilarating, as though you were internally reversing the pull of gravity. It is easy to overwork in this bandha; you’ll know you’re getting it right when there’s no hardening or gripping, but rather an updraft of breath and subtle energy. Note: This is a strong, advanced practice and should be practiced on an empty stomach. It is contraindicated if you are pregnant or are on your menstrual cycle. PRASARITA PADOTTANASANA Wide-Legged Standing Forward Bend Create deep flexion in your hips while you release the back of your legs. Stand with your legs about one leg’s distance apart with your feet parallel to each other. Place your hands on your hips. Press your feet down, and lift your arches, firming your legs. Inhale, lift your chest, and gaze up. Exhale, and fold forward and down from your hips. Place your hands on the floor shoulder-width apart. Press through your palms, and keeping your arms straight, inhale to lengthen your spine forward. (If your hips or hamstrings are tight, come to your fingertips.) Exhale, and fold all the way down, placing the crown of your head on the mat (or allow it to hang straight down). Repeat this three more times, dynamically: Inhale, straighten your arms, and lengthen forward; exhale, and fold from your hips, head down. Try a brief pause after your exhalations and observe how your inner body lifts from the base of your pelvic floor toward your crown. Then, keep your head down and hold the pose for five breaths. Keep lifting the arches of your feet and hugging in the tops of your thighs. Sense the elongation of your spine on the inhalations; deepen the fold on the exhalations. Continue to pause briefly after the exhalations and sense a residual internal lift from Uddiyana Bandha. To release the pose, inhale, straighten your arms, and lengthen your spine. Exhale, bring your hands to your hips, and gently lift your belly. Inhale to stand. ARDHA NAVASANA Half Boat Pose, variation Build power in your core. Lie on your back, legs straight, with your feet at a wall. Scoot yourself in toward the wall, walking your feet up the wall about a foot or two. Press the balls of your feet into the wall and firm your legs vigorously. Activate your whole body as though you were doing Tadasana on your back, with your arms reaching toward the wall. Inhale; then as you exhale, press your navel down, rounding your lower back. Curl your tailbone gently up and into your body to help you lift your upper body off the floor. Reach your arms forward and press the balls of your feet into the wall. Inhaling as slowly as you can, roll back down to the mat, keeping your legs firm. Repeat for four cycles: Exhale, and round your spine, lifting up; pause, inhale slowly, and return back to the floor. Keep driving your feet into the wall and rooting the top of your thighbones back into their respective hamstrings on the inhalations. See that you’re lifting from your belly, not your neck. Maintain a long neck by pressing your head back in space. If your neck is tender, you can interlace your hands behind your head and press the head gently into your hands as you come up. On your exhalations hollow the belly back and draw the tailbone in. Then, on your fifth exhalation remain in the pose, breathing as deeply as you can. Try to pause briefly after each exhalation to cultivate the natural internal lift of your pelvic floor and abdominal muscles. It will give you both more depth and ease in the pose. When you’re ready, inhale, slowly release down, and rest. » NOVEMBER 2013
  52. 52. m aste r class UTTHITA HASTA PADANGUSTHASANA Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat Bahamas Expand your horizons Experience the beneÀts of a spiritual practice as you retreat from the stressors of your daily routine and discover a healthier, happier you. Practice yoga on spacious platforms shaded by swaying palms, or facing the Caribbean. Meditate with the sunrise and sunset. Enjoy talks and workshops by world renowned speakers: Swami Swaroopananda Krishna Das Amy Weintraub John Douillard Joe Dispenza Snatam Kaur Russill Paul Stephen Sinatra Gauravani Jai Uttal David Newman Marc Halpern Edwin Bryant Kam Thye Chow Radhanath Swami Roshi Bernie Glassman Rubin Naiman Matthew Fox Vianna Stibal Maya Tiwari Amit Goswami And many others... Yoga Teachers’ Training Courses: Dec 4 - 31, 2013 VE AL IZE U NI TY Jan 4 - 31, 2014 • Feb 3 - Mar 2, 2014 • • May 5 - Jun 1, 2014 Mar 5 - M E D I TAT E S E RV O • • Apr 4 - May 1, 2014 RE EL Apr 1, 2014 IN DIVER SI Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat Bahamas TY 6 0 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M 1.866.446.5934 1.242.363.2902 www.sivanandabahamas.org Extended Hand-to-Big-Toe Pose, preparation Test your balance in this intense hamstring stretch. Begin in Tadasana with your hands on your hips. Take a big inhalation and shift your weight onto your left foot. Exhaling, bring your right leg up, hooking your big toe with the first two fingers and thumb of your right hand. (You may use a strap if you cannot keep your legs straight.) Bring your attention to your left leg: Press down steadily through your foot, and lift the kneecap. Press the top of your thigh back to keep your pelvis upright, not tucked. Now, bring your attention to your right leg: Press through the ball of your big toe, and spread the toes. Draw the kneecap up to straighten the leg. Press the top of the thigh down to keep your pelvis and lower back level. Draw your right arm back into its shoulder socket to square your shoulders and chest to the front. Then move your shoulder blades forward to lift and open your chest and to help you elongate up through the crown of your head. Steady your gaze at the tips of your lifted toes and breathe smoothly and steadily for five cycles. Observe the subtle movements that the breath creates, even as you hold steady in the pose. Release the toe and slowly lower your leg. Repeat on the second side. UTTHITA HASTA PADANGUSTHASANA Extended Hand-to-Big-Toe Pose Unite breath and movement to create ease and depth in this powerful forward bending pose. Begin in Tadasana. Inhale deeply, then exhale, and lift your right leg up for Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana; hook the toe. Take a full inhalation to establish yourself in the pose. Then as you exhale, lift your right leg a little higher as you fold your torso over it. » NOVEBMER 2013
  53. 53. Asana Pranayama Meditation Ayurveda Devotion Community Reflection Philosophy Selfless Service TRAINING TEACHERS SINCE 1978 YOGA TEACHER TRAINING & PROGRAMS Nestled in 355 acres of redwoods overlooking Monterey Bay near Santa Cruz, California. ONGOING Yoga Teacher Training 200 & 500 hour Programs JAN 24 – 29 Going Deeper A focused meditation retreat NOV 5 – 9 & DEC 3 – 7 Prenatal Yoga Teacher Training BEGINS EVERY 3 MONTHS Yoga, Service & Community A residential service learning program DEC 23 – JAN 1 Annual New Year’s Yoga Retreat www.mountmadonna.org/yogajournal 408.846.4064 / ytt@mountmadonna.org 62 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M REACH BEYOND ASANA m aste r class Stay for four cycles of breath. On your inhalations, ground your left foot and root the top of your thigh back as you expand your chest. On your exhalations, lift your right leg and gently round over the leg. Try to pause briefly after the exhalations and sense the hollowing of your belly. On your fifth exhalation remain in the forward bend, breathing as fully as you can. If possible, hold your right wrist with your left hand. Bring your awareness to the subtle shape changes that your breath creates. You should feel a bit more spacious and grounded on the inhalations and experience a lightness and deepening of the pose on the exhalations. If your leg isn’t very high, allow yourself to fold and round more deeply in an effort to bring the nose to the knee. If your leg is higher, the spine will be longer and straighter— either way, let the exhalations bring you in deeper. Try to let go of tension and experience the effortlessness of your internal lift. To come out, inhale, stand tall with your chest opening fully, and exhale as you slowly lower your straight leg to Tadasana. Repeat on your second side. After completing this sequence, move through one final Sun Salutation. First take Urdhva Mukha Svanasana (UpwardFacing Dog Pose) for a few breaths before Adho Mukha Svanasana (DownwardFacing Dog Pose). Then lie on your back. Take an easy reclined twist on both sides and rest in Savasana (Corpse Pose). Finish in a simple seated pose, observing the calm inner focus you’ve created. Working intimately with your breath has many rewards. It hones your attention, allowing you to witness constant change as the breath comes and goes. You’ll sense how each pose affects your breath, and devote yourself to the subtle effects breath has on each pose. You’ll find a lightness in your practice as you replace muscular effort with breath support. And you may find yourself playing with a pose that you thought was beyond your reach, gracefully making your way, riding on the wave of your breath. ✤ Annie Carpenter teaches SmartFlow Yoga classes and teacher trainings at Exhale Center for Sacred Movement in Venice, California. NOVEBMER 2013
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  55. 55. SIGNATURE MIND–BODY WORKSHOP JOURNEY INTO HEALING March 6–9 2014 Omni La Costa Resort & Spa • Carlsbad, CA Featuring Dr. Deepak Chopra & guest luminary Dr. Andrew Weil What Are You Hungry For? JOY OF PURITY AWARENESS ENERGY LIGHTNESS OF SOUL BALANCE Are you ready to explore the ancient healing system of Ayurveda? DEEPAK Chopra, M.D. Experience the Chopra Center’s premiere mind-body health workshop and gain a new perspective on health and healing—one that integrates the latest in scientific knowledge with the wisdom of one of the world’s oldest traditions. Learn to take a systems approach to your health that incorporates meditation, true nourishment, activating your inner pharmacy, and deep emotional and spiritual connection. ANDREW Weil, M.D. When the worlds of modern science and Ayurveda collide, you will find yourself at the center of a spectacular Journey into Healing. Visit chopra.com/journey Or call 888.736.6895 to learn more. CME credits are available. Special ofer available for a limited time!
  56. 56. home practice with Cla ire Miss ingham free flow PHOTOS: MICHAEL WINOKUR; MODEL: JASON BOWMAN; STYLIST: LYN HEINEKEN; GROOMING: VERONICA SJOEN; TOP: OLD NAVY; PANTS: PRANA; BLANKET: BAREFOOT YOGA CO. Shake things up with a practice that lets you see your habits in a whole new light. the practice This vinyasa sequence opens the hips and freshens your perspective by asking you to rethink actions that may be second nature to you in asana practice. For example, you might always clasp your hands with the same fingers on top or do poses on your right side first. The poses in this sequence offer small variations to draw your attention to your habits—and how it feels to change them. NOVEMBER 2013 mind-body benefits key focal points When the teachers at Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram in India want to stimulate ida nadi (the left energy channel along the chakras), they begin standing poses with the left foot forward. If you usually start on your right side, do the opposite, and enjoy the focused, meditative quality ida nadi can bring to practice. When you consciously change a habitual action, it’s natural to feel a moment of discomfort or uncertainty. Be patient with yourself as you move through the poses, and observe any discomfort. Remind yourself that bringing awareness to your habits can open you up to new ways of doing things, on and off your mat. YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M 6 5
  57. 57. home practice w it h C l ai re Mi ssi n g h am 1 SIDDHASANA 2 UTTANASANA BEFORE YOU BEGIN ADEPT’S POSE, VARIATION STANDING FORWARD BEND Take 2 to 4 rounds of Surya Namas- Sit cross-legged with an open chest and tall Stand up with your feet hip-distance apart. kars (Sun Salutations) to warm-up, spine. Interlace your hands. (Remember Interlace your fingers (with the atypical and end in Tadasana (Mountain Pose). which leg is in front and which fingers are fingers on top) behind you. Relax your neck, Take 5 breaths in each of the following on top for later.) Stretch your arms over- fold over your legs, and bring your hands poses, unless otherwise noted. head, and turn your palms up. over. To exit, slowly roll up to standing. 6 VASISTHASANA 7 PRASARITA PADOTTANASANA 8 VATAYANASANA WITH GARUDASANA SIDE PLANK POSE, VARIATION WIDE-LEGGED STANDING FORWARD BEND ARMS HORSE POSE WITH ARMS IN Roll onto the outside of your left foot. Stack Come up to standing, and take a big step EAGLE POSE your hips, and reach your tailbone toward out to the side. Interlace your fingers the Slowly roll up, turn your feet out, and sit your heels. Raise your right arm, and gaze irregular way behind you. Hinge at your low. Raise your arms in front, elbows bent. at your top middle finger. To exit, roll down hips to fold forward, and bring your clasped Cross your right elbow on top of your left, onto your toes, and return the upper hand hands over toward the floor. and wrap your forearms and hands. Gently REPEAT POSES 3 THROUGH 6 ON OTHER SIDE sway your body 6 times. Then switch arms. to mat. Repeat poses 3 to 6 on other side. REPEAT POSES 11 THROUGH 13 ON OTHER SIDE 12 PIGEON POSE 13 REVOLVED PIGEON POSE 14 VIKASITAKAMALASANA Bring your left shin close to parallel to the Bring your right elbow to the outside BLOSSOMING LOTUS POSE front edge of the mat. Press your pelvis of your left knee, palms together in prayer Come to sit with the soles of your feet to- to the floor or to stacked blankets under position, and twist to the left from deep gether. Root your sitting bones down. your left thigh. Square your hips, and lift in your belly. Come out of the twist, and Raise your feet, thread your forearms under your belly. Press your fingertips into the repeat poses 11 to 13 on the other side. your knees, and join thumbs and forefingers floor firmly to expand your chest up. 6 6 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M together. Exit and come back to sitting. NOVEMBER 2013
  58. 58. 3 VIRABHADRASANA I 4 PARIVRTTA PARSVAKONASANA 5 PLANK POSE WARRIOR POSE I REVOLVED SIDE ANGLE POSE, VARIATION Release the twist. Place your palms flat on On an inhalation, step your right foot Exhale, and bring your hands to prayer the mat on either side of your front foot, back into a lunge. With control, turn your position at your chest. Hook your right and step back into Plank Pose. Draw your right heel down and your toes out 45 elbow outside your left knee to come into belly in and lengthen through your spine, degrees. Reach your arms overhead while a twist. Gaze up over your left shoulder. reaching your head forward and extending you lift your chest. your heels back. 9 ARDHA USTRASANA 10 DHANURASANA BOW POSE 11 THREE-LEGGED DOWNWARD-FACING HALF CAMEL POSE Lie on your stomach and reach back to hold DOG POSE Come to kneeling. Draw up and in through onto your inner ankles. Press your belly, Release your ankles, and come down to the your navel. Raise your left arm back, and thighs, and groin into the mat. Feel your mat. Place your palms by your shoulders, place your right hand on the sole of your spine move forward, and contract your ham- and press back into Downward-Facing Dog. right foot. Focus on the length in your strings and glutes. Keep your neck long with Raise your left leg, keeping your hips paral- sides without twisting your hips. Inhale to the gaze gently forward, your thighs firm, lel. Imagine a line from your raised third toe, come up. Then repeat on the other side. and tailbone tucked under. and press it back as you spread your toes. 15 PASCHIMOTTANASANA 16 SIDDHASANA TO FINISH SEATED FORWARD BEND ADEPT’S POSE, VARIATION Lie down on your back, and enjoy Savasana Extend your legs forward on the mat, and Sit cross-legged with clasped hands as you (Corpse Pose) for at least 5 minutes. Feel flex your feet. Take your first two fingers did in pose 1, this time with the opposite leg the belly open and spacious, and aim to around your big toes. Inhale; lift your in front and fingers on top. Raise your arms relax the shoulders, arms, and legs. heart. Exhale, lengthen your spine, and overhead. Breathe, and notice any differ- fold over your legs for 10 breaths. ence from the beginning of your practice. NOVEMBER 2013 YO GAJ O U R N A L .CO M 67
  59. 59. India’s ancient system of medicine offers simple practices you can do to balance your energy and boost your health. IF WAKING UP IS A STRUGGLE, midday finds you crashing, and you’re restless and alert at bedtime, it may be time to reset your clock. According to Ayurveda, yoga’s 5,000-year-old sister science, one of the keys to good health and feeling great all day long is living in tune with nature’s cycles. Literally and energetically, that means rising and setting with the sun. To help you align your system more closely with the cycles of nature, Ayurvedic tradition recommends a routine of morning and nighttime practices collectively known as dinacharya. These rituals are designed to give you calm, focused, sustainable energy to support meditation, yoga, and everything you do throughout the day. “When I do my dinacharya, there’s a sense that I’m taking really good care of me,” says Kathryn Templeton, founder of the Himalayan Institute’s Ayurvedic yoga specialist training program and an Ayurvedic practitioner in New Haven, Connecticut. “My ability to meditate, teach, parent, and practice feels steadier and easier. And I experience more peace of mind.” To get back in sync, make over your daily routine with the simple Ayurvedic practices on the following pages. The morning practices are cleansing and energizing; they’ll infuse you with a calm sense of presence. The evening ones will help you wind down for a restful sleep. Movement, such as yoga asana, and meditation are also essential to dinacharya. Consider incorporating asana before breakfast and meditation in the morning and evening. Choose one or two of these practices to start, and after a week, take note of your energy level and mood. Then add a few more and repeat the observation process. Over time, these practices may become as routine as brushing your teeth. by Shannon Sexton photography by Trinette Reed & Chris Gramly

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