Daily yoga practice and discipline

Since the day I started to take yoga seriously and realised yoga’s many spiritual and health benefits, I’ve wanted to practise it daily. But the reality of actually having a daily yoga and meditation practice, however, is something I have been wrestling with ever since! It still does not come easy. For most people, trying to fit a new habit, like yoga, into your daily routine for longer than a few weeks is very, very

10 short Yin Yoga classes

If you haven’t yet experienced a Yin class or you love Yin yoga but haven’t much time to practise, try this selection of 30-minute Yin yoga classes. 1. Stimulating Chi flow in the joints – José de Groot Based on a sequence offered by a Shinto priest, who has done scientific research on chi, chakras and meridian pathways, this class gets the joints moving and the energy flowing. 2. Settle down – Anat

Free your fascia

Yummy and slow, winding and unwinding, reaching and stretching…sounds like the perfect yoga practice, yes? In addition to deep core work and lots of balancing postures, these words describe how I have been practicing and teaching the last few years. I also need to add that there is much umming, oohing and deep sighing as well. It just feels SO GOOD to roll around, stretch and free the fascia! Free

What to do when you lose connection with your practice

Our yoga practice helps us focus our mind on our breath, to find stillness. But we live in a world that, on the face of it, does not go hand-in-hand with a yoga practice. Our senses and our monkey minds are stimulated all day with various forms of technology, advertisements and communications. We’re surrounded by alluring material energy that takes an exceptionally strong mind to step away from.  This pull

What I learned from 40 days of practice

In December last year, I aggravated an old groin injury that leaves my movement pretty limited. Even walking and sitting down is challenging, so practising asana (physical yoga postures) is out of the question. Although I don’t have a very strong physical practice of yoga, I do rely mostly on body-based practices to help bring my very erratic, ungrounded, (Vata) mind to some kind of stillness. I’ve learnt from past

Top 10 hands-free yoga classes

These classes are ideal if you have wrist, elbow or shoulder injuries but still want the benefits of an energising Vinyasa flow class. Some will have weight in the forearms while others have no weight in the arms at all. 1. Hands-free yoga flow – Esther Ekhart – 40 mins A strong yoga flow with no Downward Dogs, Planks or Chaturangas. Instead, you’ll practise lots of balancing, leg strengthening and Pranayama and you’ll feel like you had a proper

Yoga’s Instagram Provocateur

You cannot swing a cat (pose) on Instagram without hitting photographs of yoga instructors with perfect figures twisted into perfect shapes, selling essential oils and greeting-card spirituality. Alex Auder is not one of them. Ms. Auder, 48, is something of a yoga auteur, sharing homemade videos that are more performance art than content. In them she satirizes, mocks and sometimes fillets the wellness industry, its relentless marketing and “the commodification

Turning Your Period Upside Down

Some of my yoga teachers are telling me to not go into any “inversions” — any position with my hips over the core of my body — when having my period, to not interrupt the flow. Is there any science supporting or contradicting that? — Simone, Barcelona [Have a question about women’s health? Ask Dr. Gunter yourself.] Short Take No. Tell Me More There is no data to support the

Vision Quest

What would that be? Total blindness? Worse? As it happened, I’d been preparing my entire life for the carnival floor beneath me to fall away. By the time I was 2 years old, my parents had split and placed a continent between themselves. I’d grown up as one of those Gen-X kids of divorce, lobbed between two worlds at the convenience of the parents and the constraints of the courts.

Arm rotation in Downward Facing Dog

Downward Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana) is one of the first yoga poses many people will learn. It’s brilliant for building strength and mobility in the whole body and is neutralising for the spine in between strong twists, forward bends or backbends. Once you get the hang of Downward Dog it can be a wonderful resting pose. However, in Downward Facing Dog it’s quite common for people to roll the shoulders and upper