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Entries related to: yin-yang-yoga

How to Go On Retreat Without Leaving Home

This summer has kicked off a rare opportunity for some big downtime in my life. My only goal for the summer has been to get enough rest, eat wonderful food, practice yoga and spend time enjoying life. Unplugging from daily responsibilities for a little while has been a healthy reminder for me why retreats are so important.  Although I haven't been on a formal extended retreat for well over a year, I could spend hours discussing the value of such an adventure. Most people don't create the time and space to dive in head first to a long retreat because they require a commitment that seems intimidating to a first timer. While I recommend regular retreats for any yogi seeking deeper meaning in their life, today I want to share some ways you can simply get your feet wet. 
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Yang Yoga Playlist: Summer and Celebration

Aquin Yoga is about to turn one! There are a few goodies planned in celebration this week, but today my gift to you is another Yang Yoga playlist to get you moving on and off your mat. Summer always feels like a time to celebrate life and all the wonder this world has to offer. I hope you have as much fun practicing to these tunes as I have. 
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Myths and Mistakes To Avoid When A Yogi Is Sick

Disclaimer: For anyone who has expressed care and concern towards me in the past few months, I thank you. I appreciate the support I have received during this ongoing health struggle and in no way intend to make you second guess the thoughtful and loving treatment I have received. This is not directed at anyone in particular, it is merely a general critique of the cultural norms I have noticed while dealing with my health issues. To everyone who has reached out, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
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How to Blow Your Mind (and Learn Crow) in 3 Minutes

Over the holidays I went to an event put on by the Loft Sessions in Boston. While hanging out and catching up with friends there, I found myself as part of a trio discussing yoga. One of my friends was telling me about his favourite class at South Boston Yoga but remarked at how difficult some of the arm balances can be. The person in question is a full foot taller than me and a strong guy so I was curious as to what pose in particular he found so challenging. He explained that he had been unable to do Crow pose but that most of the people in the class could—even the tiny women like me. I very emphatically told him that in fact he could do it and there was no reason why not. He countered with the argument that he had been working on it for a long time and it just wasn't happening. Finally and offhandedly I said "I can teach you that pose in 3 minutes and I promise you, you will be able to do it." At that, the third in our party kindly made me put my money where my mouth is and pulled us into a side room off the main party to give it a shot. In just three minutes I had explained, demonstrated and stood back to watch my friend take flight into crow pose for the very first time.
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S#*T Bad Yogi’s Do

I have been teaching yoga for over 10 years and recently, it has been my privilege to work with new teachers as they learn how to guide classes. As instructors, we have an amazing job working with wonderful people. But every so often someone walks in the door (seemingly voluntarily) who doesn’t seem to want to be there at all. There is debate as to how to treat a disruptive, unresponsive or downright negative student in class.  Some teachers take the “my way or the highway” approach, while others either ignore the offender or resort to “do whatever you want to do” language. When this power struggle happens, it is important for the instructor to know where they stand so today, I want to share my thoughts about teaching with fellow instructors and offer a few tips on etiquette to all the students out there.  The Down Right Difficult Student For Teachers: New age-iness would tell us that when a difficult student comes into your class room, they have been sent to teach you to look within. Are you expecting too much of your students, too little? Are you teaching the level and style that is actually advertised in that time slot? These are valid things to investigate to be sure. However it would be fairly narcissistic to assume that everyone who wandered into a drop-in class with a bad attitude was there with something to teach you. Some people are just not that nice or socially appropriate…plain and simple. I have been teaching for enough time now, that when someone is out-and-out rude or disrespectful, I either ask them to leave my class or don't give them the time of day. Sadly, the people who have the more disruptive ego trips during class have usually been practicing yoga asana for at least a few years and therefore, think they know what yoga really is. Here is the thing, any real Yogi knows not to take their own garbage out on another human being (especially staff or teachers at a studio who have devoted their life and livelihood to sharing the practice with others).  Tips for Students: Remember, ninety percent of instructors are standing at the front of the room to guide you through a practice designed to make you feel better. You may not love every moment of every class or appreciate every style out there, but if you are able to be open (even just a little bit) there is probably some gem you can pick up.
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Yin & Yang: "Self Care" That Both Nurtures AND Inspires

When I hear the phrase “self-care”, all I used to think about was warm baths or buying myself flowers. But as anyone who works alongside other human beings knows, self-care means so much more. Today I want to explore its Yin and Yang nature. One dimension of self-care is the more traditional version (the warm baths and flowers route). This is considered the Yin form as it is nurturing and enveloping. Yin self-care is what the person who loves you most in the world does for you when you are having a rough day or feeling sick, encircling you with warm fuzzies.  Another aspect of self-care is the Yang dimension. It’s the type of care that a coach or mentor might deliver. It is positivity that pushes you forward and doesn’t let you hold back your potential. Yang self-care doesn’t let you eat cookie dough on the sofa while you watch your favourite childhood movie for the millionth time—it gets you off your butt and out to the gym or to yoga.
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