The holidays are upon us. It’s a time when the world around us is festive but the body needs more rest. Here are some tips to conserve your energy and enjoy this time of celebration.
1. Go to bed 1 hour earlier each night you are home. That way you will be well rested for the nights you are out celebrating.
2. Make a big pot of soup or stew and roast some root vegetables. Eating nourishing and grounding foods, rather than grabbing what is fast and easy will help you stay healthy and balanced this season.
3. Commit to your yoga practice and get to the mat each day. If you can’t make it to class, here are some short home routines to help get you started.
4. Take a 5-20 minute break each day. Turn off your computer, put down your phone and check out! Dance, draw, put your legs up the wall, have a cup of tea, take a walk, stare into space….
5. Start the day with 2-4 glasses of warm lemon water each day and continue to drink warm fluids throughout the day.
Wishing you a blessed holiday season!
Asana: Ground yourself and build inner and outer strength by practicing wide squat, aka “Goddess Pose.”
• Take a wide stance and turn your toes out
• Be sure your knees and feet point in the same direction
• Reach your feet down into the earth as you bend your knees
• Only lower as far as you can without moving your torso forward
• Breathe and hold until fatigued - then repeat
• Practice until you can lower your thighs and pelvis parallel to the earth
The Planet: Reduce the landfill. Reuse whenever possible, otherwise recycle, compost, or give it to someone who can use it!
Inspiration: ”Perhaps the secret of living well is not in having all the answers but in pursuing unanswerable questions in good company.” Rachel Naomi Remen
Asana: Go to a public yoga class 1-3 times a week. On the days in between practice what you love and one thing that is challenging for you. Share your progress on my Facebook page.
The Planet: Come on out for California Costal Cleanup Day. Join me for free yoga and cleanup on Ocean Beach or help out on another water way near you!
Inspiration: “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” – Harold Whitman
Asana: I have been working on building strength and holding plank is really helping. How long can you hold it? Practice every day and increase by 10 seconds or 2 breaths. Let the community know how you feel by posting on Namastacey Yoga San Francisco!
Inspiration: I am inspired by all of the stories our friend, Jeannie Page is collecting in The Yoga Diaries. Check them out and contribute one of your own!
You know that little ache in your body? The one you have learned to live with and work around in your yoga practice and in other physical activities, that thing you just manage to deal with or rather choose to forget about in your life? Yeah, that one. We all have them; it’s part of being in a body. But do you know what? You don’t have to live with it anymore.
Those little tweaks and aches are messages telling your body that something is out of alignment. Perhaps you are stronger in one area and weaker in another. Maybe you have an old accident or injury, or perhaps even an emotional trauma about which you may have forgotten; a trauma that is still having a residual effect on your body, like when you fell off your bike as a child or your first heartbreak. Perhaps it’s simply the fact that we are asymmetrical beings and we all favor one side versus the other. I know those little ‘workarounds’ all too well. I’ve had a few of them myself and you know what I’ve found? When you clear them, something shifts, a big expansion occurs – Like clouds parting and the sun coming out (cue the harps playing). I know it sounds corny but it’s not far from the truth.
Here’s what I mean: Imagine you are walking down the road and there is a little pebble in your shoe. It’s not too bad so you keep on walking. It’s irritating you but not enough to stop and take off your shoe and empty it out. This activates your nervous system and your entire body begins to compensate for it. Just like the operating system on your computer tells the printer to print or a disc to play, your muscles do what the nervous system tells them to do. That pebble in your shoe becomes the norm: Your whole body organizes around it and adapts; that is the way it recovers.
When you finally take the time to remove the pebble from your shoe greater ease comes over your whole being: the light is brighter, your vision is clearer, and your nervous system relaxes. It’s like updating your operating system. In my experience this can be quite profound.
So how do you get that darn pebble out of your shoe? I am a firm believer in the power of yoga and regular bodywork. Healthy biomechanics in your yoga practice, along with the willingness to take the time to learn alignment and shift how you are using your body in your yoga and in life, is the first step.
In addition, a skilled body worker can assist you in making lasting changes so that the architecture of your structure is supported and aligned. With the help of a body worker, you may in fact discover that the spot where you feel the pain might not actually be the origin of the pain. The root cause of the pain may very well be in another part of your body that is related to and interlinked with the painful spot in a way you might not even imagine.
The benefits of healthy biomechanics and regular bodywork are tremendous: not only will you experience more ease in your body and in your life, but also it is likely that your overall health and well-being will improve. I don’t mean to imply that all your problems will go away, but in my experience when I feel good, I am better equipped to deal with what arises in my life and I am therefore happier overall.
So here’s where you can start: My good friend and respected colleague, Mike Lane, and I are teaching a workshop about how to get that pesky pebble out of your shoe! This workshop is designed for anyone with a body to learn to help themselves when these troublesome moments arise: you sleep funny and your neck has a crick, you pick up something heavy and your lower back goes out, you go on a hike and your knee hurts the next day. We will show you how to work with these therapeutic concerns and many more. And for those of you that are yoga teachers yourselves, this workshop will help you to better assist your students and private clients.
“It isn’t the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it’s the pebble in your shoe.” – Muhammad Ali
Mobilize Your Body: Functional Anatomy
and Yoga Therapy for Yoga Practitioners
Yoga Tree Mission
Find time each day to do a long Downward Dog. Start with 1 minute and work your way to 2 or 3! For me this is like a meditation, it is calming and grounding and helps me center in the middle of a busy day. Let us know how you feel by posting on Namastacey Yoga San Francisco!
Sign the petition to Ban Fracking in California or get involved with another environmental cause to raise awareness.
Check out this photo…
Here is my declaration for the Manifesto Movement of May
With my feet firmly on the ground, I root down into the earth and stand for living in integrity and aligning with my most authentic truth.
With my heart wide open, I stretch up to the sky and open to and trust in the force of life that guides and supports me.
I bow forward and humbly recognize the potential that lies in vulnerability, uncertainty, and change.
I bend backwards and affirm the strength of my spirit and the courage of my heart to rise and soar to new heights.
I turn to the right where I am met with like hearts and am comforted in the power that lies within friends and community.
I turn to the left and find compassion and tolerance for those I do not yet know and whose points of view I do not agree with.
I come back to center and embrace this life. I choose to live fully, to stand in my light, and to offer myself as a guide for others.
Stacey Rosenberg, May 8, 2012
Become part of the movement. Declare what is true for you and post it on Manifesto Movement’s Facebook Page.