Home Yoga Practice Tips - Downward Dog and Dust Bunnies

A cluttered pile of books, dust bunnies and dirt collected on the floor, or, in those instances when I practiced in my kitchen, cabinets that were unspeakably dirty. Inevitably, I would decide that these distractions were unbearable and I would do enough cleaning that I felt more relaxed. From there, I would return to downward dog and breathe a sigh of relief.  But I would simultaneously feel a bit defeated that I had been distracted from my practice.

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Yoga Practice as Process - Setu Bhandasana (Bridge Pose)

While the held variation of this pose is typically called Setu Bandhasana, the Vinyasa for this pose is called Dwi Pada Pitham, two-legged table pose. The many variations one can choose with regards to foot and arm placement will be explored in future posts. For now, try starting with the feet at a comfortable width apart with the heels placed approximately under the knee and the arms alongside the body.  Once you have the feet in place, give yourself the opportunity to take a few breaths to feel the connection between your body with the floor.

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Yoga Foundations – Creating a Sustainable Practice

What then forms the foundation of a Yoga practice? Though the answer can vary, I have found that a sustainable Yoga practice is supported by proper movement mechanics, awareness of the breath, and a philosophical orientation that considers the relationship between ease and effort. These three concepts have become the bedrock of my own approach to yoga, and have made my personal practice has become both more rewarding and interesting.

 

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Letting Go in Yoga

Yoga is not about staying the same and repeating the patterns of thought and movement that do not encourage our continued growth. To a large measure, it is about change, finding the softest part of our being in the most uncomfortable of situations and fundamentally altering the way we interact with the world at large. This transformation happens at its own pace, typically with fits and starts. But with consistent and prolonged practice it occurs, and perhaps then we slowly, but more fully, begin to embody and honor our highest ideals.

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Creating Cohesion Between Spiritual Practice and Parenting

While I was fortunate enough to have some great advice and association of a loving Sadhu along with the moments of clarity that followed, the hard work of integrating this advice into my life fully had hardly begun. In the weeks and months that followed I began to notice that my ideals for spiritual life and family life were falling short of where I would like them to be in practice, with perhaps the biggest challenge being how to accommodate an intelligent, willful three year old and the full range of his age-appropriate, boundary-testing behaviors.

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