Monday, March 20, 2017

Monday Morning Rambles: Spring "Awakening"...

I had another other blog post planned for today but last night, I was inspired to write about something new.

(Below, I discuss the other topic; but first I want to speak about something that has been on my mind.)

Today is the first day of Spring, which to me signifies rebirth and change. People tend to shy away from the word "change" because it can stir up feelings of fear. But I am here to tell you that change can be good thing, especially when it comes to YOU evolving.

People who have known me for many years sometimes tell me "You have changed so much" as if it is a bad thing or perhaps they bring up something from the past "You used to have such a bad attitude".  I have come to the conclusion that sometimes people don't like when you change because it reminds them that they are stuck in the same place and they want to keep you in a box.  They want you to remain the same because it makes them feel safe.

Screw those people! Change. Evolve. Grow.

We were put here to find what makes us happy and sometimes we need to shake things up to find it. Who you are, does not determine who you will be. On this first day of Spring you have a choice...stay the same or join the rest of nature and begin to grow into the magnificent creature that you were meant to become.


Speaking of evolving, I don't know if you've noticed this but people are starting to live much longer lives and the best part is that most of them are staying active. I see this every day since I am in the health and fitness industry.

This weekend we had a Senior Yoga workshop at the Ashram which really intrigued me. The class was taught by Pat, who graduated from my school as well. Fun fact, this morning I discovered that my neighbor attends her classes at her senior center. We are all connected.

When working with seniors you need to take into account some issues that they may suffer from such as, Osteoporosis, Joint issues (example flexibility or arthritis), Center of Gravity, Loss of Balance, just to name a few...

On Saturday we did various Asanas. First we executed them without any modifications so that we can sense what we feel in the poses. We then performed the Asana with some adjustments to make it suitable for the senior population and we tried to recreate the same feelings that we felt prior.  We also did two vinyasa flows on the chair, the first was a warrior flow and the second was a balance flow. I currently have a couple of clients that are seniors and I know first hand that balance is definitely something that they struggle with.

One more thing that I loved was when we incorporated Tai Chi into our practice. I have always been fascinated by Tai Chi; it's mind blowing, how you can feel this ball of energy between your hands when you shift your body from one side to another.

We also did "tapping" which is something that I have been doing for a few years to cope with my anxiety.

I am not sure if I will be teaching seniors any time soon but I do know that I will be teaching for a loooooong time so all these will be very useful in the future.

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Monday, March 13, 2017

Monday Morning Rambles: Speak To Your Body Through Asanas...

This weekend, I went on a little road trip with my classmates to Farmingdale, Long Island to attend a Liya Workshop which was taught by our Anatomy Teacher, Janine (aka "the body whisperer").

The Workshop "How Yoga Enhances Communication Among the Body’s Systems" focused on how asanas can bring together harmony and communication between the mind, body, and spirit.

As always Janine taught us so much so I decided to make a list of the highlights to share with you:
  • When we listen to our body, it will guide us correctly
  • Our body works likes a Mandala "Each person's life is like a mandala - a vast, limitless circle. We stand in the center of our own circle, and everything we see, hear, and think forms the mandala of our life" - Pema Chodron
  • Proper alignment is key to distributing forces
  • Fascia is another way for the body to communicate in the body; to keep it healthy, you need to stretch it. When it gets "stuck" it becomes hard to break it up because it is mostly made of collagen 
  • Some poses that help the nervous system are tripod, rabbit, headstand
  • When we come from our heart, the ego can't be involved
  • The practice of Pranayama, breathes new life into every single cell of your body 
  • Twists are beneficial for someone who is suffering from diabetes
  • Disease is created by an imbalance in the mind, body, and spirit
  • Meditation improves the quality of your health "What you think, you become" and is a great tool for people who suffer from depression (I agree!)
Speaking of depression, one thing stuck out to me from the lecture. Janine spoke about how our body can give us signs of someones ailments and she said that sometimes a person who has rounded shoulders, it can be sign of depression since the heart is not open. I suffer from depression and I suffer from scoliosis which rounds my back a little so it made me wonder if this could be one of the causes.

I find it "funny" that the asanas which are beneficial for my scoliosis are back bends, which are heart openers and ironically theses are the poses that are the hardest for me.

Hmmm there goes that whole mind, body, and spirit connection.

After the workshop, some of my classmates and other members of the Yogashakti family went to grab dinner at a local Mexican restaurant. Nothing opens up your heart like good people and lots and lots of laughter...

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Thursday, March 9, 2017

A Day Without A Woman ...

I don't usually post during the middle of the week but I wanted to take a moment to speak about my experience yesterday and what it meant to me to be part of this movement. At first, I felt guilty that I had to work but then I remembered "Hey you are empowering women, which is what today is all about". 

After meeting with clients, I reached out to a couple of friends and my sister to see who wanted to join me and head into the city. Thankfully my friend Tara was planning on going as well so we went together. It actually worked out pretty great since we both weren't able to attend the Women's March a couple of months ago because we started our 500 classes that day and I remember us saying that the next time, "WE WILL BE THERE". 

First we headed to Central Park for the afternoon rally and then we all marched together to Trump International Hotel...the crowd was small but we were loud! We chanted and made our voices heard. Every time that someone would enter the establishment we would chant "Boycott Trump" or "NY Hates Trump" as well as other things but I will keep this PG rated. I am sure that there must be a picture of me floating around the internet with my middle fingers pointed straight up

We then headed over to Washington Square Park for the rally at 4 PM...we arrived early to secure a good spot. We enjoyed a band playing music while we soaked up the sun and watched strangers coming together to dance. It was a beautiful moment.

While we were sitting there, I was approached by a Spanish news channel to comment on the events of the day but I kindly declined because I didn't want to embarrass myself with my "spanglish".  (I did see myself on the news, dancing ha)

The rally began a little after four and the energy was amazing. The speakers all had different stories to tell, different struggles to share but we were all there for one purpose, for WOMEN. An older lady standing near us, reminded us that when she was our age, women needed permission to open up their own bank account. 

I am not blind to the fact that we were all there because right now things are scary in our country but I have to be honest, all I felt yesterday was love and pride. Love for all these women who stood up and spoke their truth and Pride to be part of this community that will not silently stand in the corner while our rights are taken away. We are here and you WILL see us. 

Check out my video below where I speak more about my experience as well as sharing a couple of videos that I captured...


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