Monthly Archives: January 2017

Weekend Yoga Events I am Attending

This weekend my schedule is jam packed with yoga events! I am blessed to be part of several yoga communities with amazing special occassions.

Last night I went to a special harmonium and mantra workshop at Mandala Yoga. Signa, the owner, led us through the basics of how to play the harmonium, which is a wind instrument that sounds somewhat like an organ. It creates a drone to accompany mantra singing. We learned drone chord progressions for many mantras, and I am excited to incorporate more call-and-response signing to open my classes at Mandala. (I wish I owned a harmonium so I could also do this at school and at Yoga on Yamhill!)
This afternoon I am attending another event at Mandala, a Yoga Nidra class! Nidra is a yoga sleeping meditation. It is very unique and deeply relaxing. It has been a few years since I did yoga nidra, so I can’t wait!
I had also considered going to an Ashtanga workshop at Yoga on Yamhill this morning, but my body needed extra sleep. 

As I continue in the 40 day yoga challenge, I am grateful for yoga events. They help keep my practice fresh and interesting!

New Challenge: 40 Days of Asana!

Good intentions are my specialty. I am exceptional at setting lofty goals for myself. Following through on them is a whole ‘nother story. For years I have mentally beat myself up for not practicing as much nor as often as I think I should. Now, after ten years of practice, I practice most days, but I still lack consistency. At this point, after having recently completed my second 10-day silent Vipassana meditation retreat, I am meditating for at least one hour per day (sometimes split into two smaller segments.) And so I figure this is the perfect time to recommit to my personal yoga practice as well.

My inspiration? Mandala Yoga, one of my absolute favorite places to practice in Portland. I think it’s the most beautiful studio in town, and it specializes in the yoga of sound, with plenty of kirtan and gong opportunities. I also love their focus on Kundalini yoga, a style of yoga that you don’t see too often. Anyhoo, Mandala’s brilliant owner Signa has issued a challenge for us: To practice 40 days in a row! You can sign up for this challenge at the Facebook event page. My personal guidelines for this challenge will be as follows:

–I must practice every day!
–A practice should be at least 15 minutes long. (This is my personal requirement, don’t let even this time limit discourage you from doing the challenge!)
–Physical postures (asana), mantra, and breathing exercises (pranayama) count.

Also, I will be adding this to my current meditation goal of practicing 1 hour of Vipassana meditation per day. (Again, you don’t need to follow this guideline to participate!)

Tomorrow, in my 7am Hatha Flow class at Mandala, I will be presenting students with a simple 20-minute flow they can practice at home in order to participate in the challenge. Here is a picture of that simple practice:

img_20170117_154750.jpg

Written out, that is:

Cow/cat 3x
seated side stretch on each side
seated twist on each side
mountain, fold, 1/2 lift, fold, mountain (I would do this three times as well)
low lunge, crescent lunge, 1/2 splits, warrior 1, warrior 2, reverse warrior, extended side angle, warrior 2, low lunge, 1/2 lift, low lunge into crescent lunge, 1/2 splits, warrior sequence on other side
tree on each side
supine twist
savasana.

Mandala will be hosting a kirtan and potluck 30 days into the challenge, and a celebration at the very end. Whether or not you can attend those events, I invite you to join me in this challenge! I am excited to share the impact this daily sadhana (personal practice) has on my thinking, my body, and my emotions.