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Introduction

I have grown up in Bakersfield California most of my life. I am apart of an amazing family, one of love, faith, and learning. My father was a great provider, and an amazing role model. I have 2 older sisters who regularly showed their sisterly love and protected me when needed. My little brother and I fought typical battles trying to out do the other. We were (and are) a happy family, there was nothing we could not do.

Despite my excellent family, there is an outside world that they cannot protect me from. That world found a way to affect me at an early age. At the age of 7 I had an experience at the hand of a friend that changed me. One that I never told and still struggle with. But because of my family and my faith, I started to heal. I knew that God loved me and I was a Child of God. I found solace in scriptures. But, even with that healing, I sunk into depression that went unnoticed until I was 28.

Growing up I knew I felt unhappy and something was wrong. I often would feel a desi…

Utthita Hasta Padasana/ Parsva Hasta Padasana

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Utthita Hasta Padasana
Expanded Hand Foot Pose Standing Asana

Key Benefits
Strengthens legs and arms How to get into Legs up the Wall
From Tadasana jump your feet 4 to 4 1/2 feet apart and at the same time extend your arms over your feet.  Key Points
Press into the big toe mound and the outer side of the feet, lifting the arches and inner legs. Lift the knee caps and press the top center thighs back as you lengthen the sacrum towards the hamstrings. Extend the torso towards the ceilings and bring the bottom shoulder blades together expanding the chest. Expand the arms from the center of the chest outward and look forward. 

Parsva Hasta Padasana
Side Hand Foot Pose Standing Asana

How to get into Parsva Hasta Padasana
From Utthita Hasta Padasana turn your back foot in slightly and turn your whole front leg  90 degrees.  Key Points
Press into the big toe mound and the outer side of the feet, lifting the arches and inner legs. Lift the knee caps and press the top center thighs of the back leg bac…

Legs up the Wall

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Prasarita Padasana 90 supported
Legs up the Wall  Restorative Pose

Key Benefits
Helps low back painHelps insomniaPrepares legs for inversions How to get into Legs up the Wall
Lay on your side with your hips almost touching a wall and your knees bent towards your chest and your arm straight in line with your ear. Roll onto your back unbend your legs and straighten them along the wall. Your hips should be near the wall.  Key Points
Press the toe mounds towards the ceiling the bring the pinky sides of the feet towards the ground.Extend from the inner groin to the inner heel and roll the thighs together. Press the top center thighs back towards the wall and lift the knee caps towards the thighs. Relax the abdomen and roll the shoulders under opening the chest. 
Modifications:
If the knees bend move away from the wall till the legs are straightUse a chair and bend the knees on the seat of a chair

When to and when not to do yoga

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Yoga is so therapeutic that there is hardly a time to not do yoga. But there is clearly a line, if you have a fever stay off your mat, hydrate and rest. I am reflecting on this as my little ones have been sick these past few weeks.

For just about every other condition do yoga. Some conditions require the assistance and guidance of a more qualified teacher that you will need to seek out, such as cancer patients, pregnancy, rehabilitating an injury, or coming back from a surgery. Take time to look up the most qualified Iyengar Yoga Teacher in your area for these concerns.

But, if you have a cold, sore neck, old injury, or a mental disorder such as depression, get on your yoga mat. Some times that is easier said than done. I can attest to that, it is much more comfy to sit on my couch and read about yoga than to practice when I hurt or when my depression is really acting up, but I have to remind myself that even starting with a 15 minute practice will make me feel better, and hopefully w…

Eka Pada Muktasana and Dwi Pada Muktasana

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Eka Pada Pavana Muktasana
One footed releasing the winds pose Restorative Pose

Key Benefits
helps low back pain How to get into Eka Pada Pavana Muktasana
Lay in Supta Tadasana bring one leg towards your chest and wrap your arm around the shin.Keep the other leg in Supta Tadasana.  Bring both legs to Supta Tadasana and change sides.  Key Points
Relax the groin of the bent leg as you bring it towards the head and relax the foot. Keep the hip moving away from the head. The Supta Tadasana leg is strong and the hamstring is reaching for the ground and the big toe mound is reaching away from the body. 
Modifications:
Take the hands under the shin for a knee injury or use a belt
Dwi Pada Pavana Muktasana
Two Footed Releasing the Winds pose Restorative Pose

Key Benefits
helps low back pain How to get into Dwi Pada Pavana Muktasana
Lay in Supta Tadasana bend the legs and deepen the hip groins into the hip sockets and wrap both arms around the shins, keep as much of the sacrum on the ground as possible. …

Gaze to the past and present

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Today I did a photo shoot with Paula and it brought back so many memories. Memories of Tuesday morning practices with Paula, practices with my babies, doing other promotional shoots for her, and fun shoots with my kids, which means not all of these poses have perfect alignment, but I chose these for the emotions they evoke. I wanted to put up some of my favorite pictures through the years that have been caught on camera.

Daniel came over and sat on me when I was a few months pregnant with Emma 




Paula had a photographer come out and take some pictures for the studio, we ended up having some fun with some poses.



 Daniel loves to sit on my bolster and pretend it is a Train. 
I loved doing headstand while pregnant. 
Carolyn Belko helped me all throughout my pregnancy with Emma. This was one of my favorite poses to be in.

Emma came out practically knowing what yoga props were. 
 We had a makeshift yoga photo session with the two kids one day. There is nothing more fun than playing with the kid…

Virasana

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Virasana
Hero's pose Seated pose



Key Benefits
cures rheumatic pains in kneesrelieves gouthelps achieve shapely arches, ideal for pain in feet, calves and feel for calcaneal spurs and coldness in feetgood for those who work in water or stand for hours on feet and inflammation of blood vesselsdone with ease on cyclecan be done immediately after food and will relieve heaviness in stomach How to get into Virasana
Kneel on floor knees together feet just wider than hip distance lean forward and place head on floor. Take your fingers behind your knees and with your fingers move your calf muscle down your leg towards your ankle and out towards your outer leg as you sit back between your feet.  Key Points

Press all ten toes, the top of the feet, and the shins into the floor as you extend your torso towards the ceiling. Lengthen your thighs towards your knees and move your tailbone into the body. Release the groins down and extend the arms towards the kneesOpen the chest and move the shoulders a…

Exciting News!

Two great announcements!

First I will be holding a free monthly intro to yoga class at Yoga Space on a Saturday. Time and which Saturday is yet to be determined. I will update when we set the class on the schedule.

Secondly, I am going to start creating 30 min Iyengar level 1 and level 2 sequences that you can do from home.

I know how hard it can be to leave your house, especially if you have little kids. I know how hard it can be to pay for a weekly yoga class, especially if you have to pay for a babysitter. I know how frustrating it can be if the only yoga you can take is from a yoga teacher you don't know because that is who teaches at your gym.

I know you want to do yoga.

I know the benefits of yoga. I have read studies, I have witnessed its effects in my life, and I have seen it change others. I want to bring yoga to you.

So starting soon you will grab your mat, maybe a yoga block or two and come do yoga with me!

Until then, enjoy these videos taken by my son of standing pose…