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Archive for month: November, 2013

Get the Most out of Yoga Class: 5 Easy Tips to Starting an at Home Yoga Practice

November 5, 2013
November 5, 2013

Get the Most out of Yoga Class:
5 Easy Tips to Starting an at Home Yoga Practice
by Lucka Mantra
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When it comes to getting better at any skill, you’ve probably already heard that a little bit of practice every day is more beneficial than a really long session once a week.

If you were taking guitar or French lessons once a week, wouldn’t it make sense to practice your new riffs and scales or vocabulary outside of the lesson setting?

Well, it is the same with yoga classes. Taking home what you learned in your class and practicing it at your own speed is where a lot of the yoga magic happens.

But what if you struggle to find the time or motivation to roll out your mat on a daily basis?  Here are 5 tips that can help you get started:

1)     Schedule it! Practicing around the same time every day will greatly increase the likelihood of creating the habit.
 I like to do my at home yoga practice in the morning after my workout when my body is nice and warmed up. It was kind of painful the first few times that I did this but before long my body – and more importantly, my mind – really did adjust. Schedule a time of day that you will do your routine and stick to it. When it is time, put down whatever you are doing and get started.

2)     Just put on those stretchy pants and get started!
So now you have your yoga time scheduled. But its yoga time and you feel lazy. What do you do? Go put on your stretchy pants; it will help you get in the mood. The hardest part of working out is putting on your workout clothes! My goal is to do 15-20 minutes of yoga on a regular basis, and once I put on my gear and get started I usually get so into it that I keep going for 30-45 minutes.
3)     Do poses that your body loves.
Why not look forward to practicing at home rather than seeing at it like it is something you have to do? By doing poses that you love you help your body feel amazing and it will make you want to do it more often. You can save the more challenging poses to practice at your yoga class where you will have an experienced instructor to guide you.

4)     If you don’t know what to practice, find a sequence that you enjoy and follow it as a starter guide.
There are tons of free resources online. Think of something that you want to work on (my thing right now is the splits) and look up a ‘how to’ video on Youtube. I have also used this morning sequence as a guide to get me started, and then I add other poses as I feel like.

5)     Make a yoga practice calendar.
Every day that you practice mark your calendar with an X and try to sting as many X’s together as possible. This is a technique that Jerry Seinfeld used to motivate himself to write.
Jerry once said, “Just keep at it and the chain will grow longer every day. You’ll like seeing that chain, especially when you get a few weeks under your belt. Your only job next is to not break the chain. Don’t break the chain.”

 

Lucka is a yoga instructor at Wild Woods Yoga and Wellness in Nelson BC.
For more articles visit www.luckamantra.com

Man I love that Sauna!

November 1, 2013
November 1, 2013

sauna_lady_cream_towelYou may or may not know this, but we have an infrared sauna at the studio and I LOVE that thing. I’m pretty sure that I get the most use out of and this is a trend that will most likely continue. But don’t worry, I like to share, so I’ll make sure there’s lots of time for you to use the sauna too…I promise!

I’ve been getting a few common questions about the sauna so while I was sitting in there sweating today I decided I’d come home and answer some of those questions here for you!

1. When should I use the sauna in relation to my yoga class or massage?

If you are having a massage I highly recommend using the sauna before your appointment. It will warm up your tissues and help you to relax before you even get on the massage table, making your massage far more effective and thorough.

If you are heading to a yoga class I’d recommend using the sauna before your class in order to more deeply stretch areas of excess tension, or after your class if you’d like to save the sweatiness for when you’re heading home. Please only go for that deep stretch if you know that your targeting muscle group is actually in need of a serious stretch. The body is prone to imbalances (called upper crossed and lower crossed syndromes) where one set of muscles is overly tight and the opposing set is overly long. The overly long muscle group can feel tight as well, but it does not need to be stretched more. A common occurence of this is in the rhomboid muscles (the muscles between your shoulder blades)…they definitely feel great to be stretched, but in the majority of cases they are in dire need of strengthening…not stretching. And that’s the end of my little rant on not overstretching muscle groups that don’t need it! Remember that adding heat and stretching those groups can equal injury. If you have questions about this let me know or come in during retail hours…I’d be stoked to help you understand it more fully!!

2. How long should I stay in the sauna for?

If it’s your first time in the sauna I’d recommend 20-30 minutes at the most. It’s a good way to judge how your body will be affected by the heat of the sauna. After that, work your way up to sweating in the sauna for up to 40 minutes if it feels right for you. Any dizziness or discomfort indicates that you need to get out of the sauna.

3. What are the benefits of using the sauna?

There are many benefits of using the sauna from relaxation to detoxification. Click HERE to find more details about each of these benefits:

– Detoxification: Eliminate toxins and pollutants from your body
– Burn calories and control weight
– Relax and relieve stress
– Relieve aches and pains
– Build up your immune system
– Strength your cardiovascular system
– Improve skin quality & tone
– Enjoy the benefits of a workout without the pain

4. For what reasons should I not use the sauna?

Current medical history:

  • Pregnant or lactating
  • Dehydration
  • Recent (acute, within 48 hours) joint injury, chronically hot and swollen joints, enclosed infections (either dental, in joints or any other tissue).
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Heat illness (heat cramp/exhaustion/stroke)
  • Medication with a narrow therapeutic index, out of which is life threatening
  • Unstable hypertension
  • Severe hypotension
  • Hemophilia and/or a predisposition to hemorrhage
  • Superficial metallic implants (ie. metal pins, rods, artificial joints or any other surgical implant due to the reflection of infrared rays by these articles

Currently have:

  • Diabetes
    • also use insulin subcutaneous injections
    • also have neuropathy
  • Neuropathy
  • Acute or chronic edema or lymphedema (swelling of the wrists, ankles, etc.)
  • Cholinergic urticaria, acantholytic dermatosis, malaria, severe burns/scarring/heat rash
  • Am attempting to conceive (male or female)
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus
  • Take street/recreational drugs (please circle either past or present) [eg. amphetamines, heroin, cocaine]
  • Take medications which may predispose me to heat illnesses when exposed to heat [eg. sympathomimetics, anticholinergics, tricyclic antidepressants, antihistamines, phenothiazines]
  • Take medication that may reduce perspiration ability [eg. diuretics, barbiturates, ß-blockers]

Read the following carefully before starting an Infrared Sauna session.

Please remember that infrared heat is simply radiant energy in the form of a band of light that radiates heat penetrating the skin to a depth of 1½ inches or more. This radiant heat is efficient because it warms the body internally, not the air. To regulate the temperature of the infrared sauna during use, open the door for cooling.

  • For optimal results, refrain from using the sauna on a full stomach.
  • It is important to remain hydrated. For best results, drink water prior, during and after your sauna session.
  • Do not apply excess body lotion to your body prior to a sauna session.
  • Use at least 3 towels:
    • sit on one folded towel for perspiration absorption and cushioning
    • use another towel on the floor to absorb extra sweat
    • use a third towel to wipe off your body surface sweat
  • At the first sign of a cold or flu, increasing sauna sessions may be beneficial in boosting the immune system and decreasing the reproductive rate of viruses and bacteria.
  • As your body becomes more heat conditioned, you may want to have the sauna session increased to 45 minutes or longer. Please remember to hydrate your system with plenty of water during the full session.

 

I hope this answers some of your questions! If you have more let us know!!

                                          Brittanya

 

To book an appointment call 250-352-5505 or email info@wildwoodswellness.com.