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Yoga in Daily Life

//Yoga in Daily Life

Too many muscles spoil the stretch

"Too many cooks spoil the broth Similarly, Too many muscles spoil the stretch" When we are in Veerabhadra asana, the instructor often tells us to balance on both the legs and feel the stretch in the calves and quads. But, more often than not, we are busy adjusting the thighs and engaging the core. Thus, isolation is lost and when too many muscles are used, the effectiveness of the stretch is reduced. The asanas work the best, when.... Be mindful about the set of muscles being stretched and keep the other muscles relaxed. Focus on one set of muscles at a time. Dont hold your breath during a stretch, as this will tense your muscles. Instead, you need to relax by exhaling longer than inhaling. Hold each asana for 30 seconds. Let the muscle lengthen slowly—don’t force it. Do repetitions of the asana everyday as this strengthens and lengthens the muscles. Did you know, injuries occur more often when you are coming out of an asana. Thus, avoid bouncing back after staying in an asana. Learn to relax the set of muscles that are not being used. Asanas are most effective when the mind, body and breath work in unison. "Sthira Sukha Asana," in every asana, it is important to be comfortable and stable and let the magic begin. :) Long term improvements of the body include a happier spirit, toned muscles, better digestion, and a deeper love for your body. Yoga is an ideal practice for that looking to better their bodies and lives, and no one is happier to teach you the techniques than your local yoga instructor or fellow yogi. Iti Jain

Know your asana- USHTRASANA

Ushtrasana or the camel pose is a backbend which also opens the heart centre.  Ushtrasana is like a camel travelling through the Sahara, requiring stamina, endurance, and a commitment to inner awareness. What is so special about Ushtrasana? This asana improves the blood circulation in the abdominal region. Thus, improves the digestion. Also, the pose strengthens the lower back while opening the heart center. Therefore, Ushtrasana helps us physically and emotionally!! Chakra-wise The camel pose stimulates the Manipura Chakra which allows us to have control over our thoughts and emotional responses, set healthy boundaries, and be at peace with ourselves. Its physical association is with digestive function. Benefits of Ushtrasana Strong and flexible spine - Backbends help in restoring the natural flexibility of the spine. With consistent practice, the back becomes strong and agile. Opens the chest and shoulders - As the digital era requires us sitting in front of computers. Ushtrasana opens the shoulders and relieves stress from them. Tones us the abdomen - As the abdomen is pushed outwards, the obliques are stretched. Thereby, this helps in toning the muscles around the stomach. Improved digestion - As the blood circulation improves in the abdomen, the organs function optimally leading to better digestion. Stress relief -  Our minds often follow our bodies, so by increasing the flexibility in your spine.We relieve the tension in the neck, back, and shoulders. This helps in relaxing the body and mind! :) Emotional balance - As the chest is opened, the energy in the heart center is stimulated. This helps in balancing the emotions and feelings. Thus, we feel more peaceful and centered. Extroversion in personality - As the heart center opens, it is easier for a person to express oneself and [...]

Using Diaphragmatic breathing in Yoga

Breathing is an essential part of yoga. We begin with deep breaths, sync our breaths with the movements in Surya namaskar, take deeper breaths while holding our posture and focus on the breath in yoga nidra too!! Wow, thats a lot of breathing. Yoga uses "Diaphragmatic breathing"  or commonly called "yogic breathing." Colloquially its called "Belly Breath." What is Diaphragmatic breathing? Diaphragmatic breathing or deep breathing, is breathing that is done by contracting the diaphragm, a muscle located horizontally between the thoracic cavity and abdominal cavity. Air enters the lungs and the chest rises and the belly expands during this type of breathing. Myths Busted 1) Just because the stomach rises, does not mean the stomach is being filled with air.  As the diaphragm expands the belly expands. 2) A lot of people, ask why not use lungs which have been created for breathing. In chest breathing or thoracic breathing, we draw in the minimal breath into the lungs, without using the diaphragm. Thus, the lungs do not get a chance to draw in the optimal amount of oxygen. Benefits of Diaphragmatic Breathing Relieves stress Deep breathing helps in better relaxation. Diaphragmatic breathing stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, which evokes the feeling of relaxation. Supplies more oxygen This healthy breathing pattern also increases the oxygen delivery to the cells. It also stimulates the blood flow and enhances the nourishment of the brain and muscles. Improves our concentration It is logical that if we decrease the stress levels, our minds get clearer and it is much easier to focus. If you practice meditation or visualization, always start with this breathing technique – it will calm the mind and evoke a positive feeling of connection between the mind and body. Increases our lung capacity Most of us are [...]

By | October 16th, 2017|Knowledge Articles, Pranayam, Yoga in Daily Life|0 Comments

6 Yoga Myths Busted!!

Yoga Myths When people start thinking about yoga there are lots of thoughts/preconceived notions running in the mind. I’m sure it does for everybody, before they start. Some folks have asked me if Yoga is only for flexible people? yoga can de-stress you, but lose weight…??? Busting the common yoga myths Yoga is sneakily religious Yoga did originate from India and we have a rich background for close to 5000 years. But this does not means, it is a part of Hinduism or Buddhism. Yoga is as secular as it is. It is a life science and majority of studios and teachers default it to a practice that is focused on wellbeing. Yoga is for flexible people When I saw Neetu (yoga teacher) in the 1st class, I wondered, how on earth would I even do all the suryanamaskars………leave alone asanas. It seemed like an unsurmountable task for me. But now we all know and understand that Yoga helps one get more flexible. But, more importantly yoga helps, one find more flexibility in the mind. This makes us more loving, tolerant and flexible towards life situations. Yoga and weight-loss? The goal of yoga is not weight loss. But you’d anyway lose weight due to the asana and surya namaskars. The first Patanjali sutra explains this beautifully – "Yogaś chitta-vṛtti-nirodhaḥ" Yoga is the union, balance, harmonious state of mind; bridging the different aspects of life. Yogis are vegetarians No! Some yogis try to practice ahimsa of the yamas from eight-limbed path of Patanjali Yoga. But not all practitioners are vegetarians.  Yoga is for relaxation only Normally people ask me how I lost weight/maintain my weight. When I tell them it is Yoga . They are surprised as their idea of yoga [...]

Yoga cures for Thyroid

Thyroid is a much talked about condition. Let's spend some time to quickly understand what can help you recover from it, by using Yoga. Thyroid and Yoga This gland is located in the neck region and releases the thyroxin hormone which helps in body metabolism. Thyroid can be of 2 types - Hyper and Hypo thyroidism. We meet many people who ask us for specific asanas to heal. While you focus on those asanas more, you also need to work on your complete body. We cannot just exercise one part of our body/organ. If you are focusing on specific asanas, do it post suryanamaskars under proper guidance. Below are some Thyroid focusing asanas to start with, before you do that, do have a word with the Yoga teacher.  Yoga practices to help with Thyroid Jalandhar Bandha: In every Total Yoga class we do Bandhas as we believethey are very effective energy locks. Jalandhar bandha is also known as the chin lock and stimulates the thyroid glands. It also works on the Vishuddhi Chakra! Sarvangasana: Popularly called the Shoulder stand - Sarvangasana is an important pose to stimulate the thyroid gland and control thyroxin. In this pose there is reverse blood flow working on your skin, face, head and throat of course!  Halasana: Most often,from Sarvangasana we move slowly to Halasana. In this pose compression is on the neck and it stimulates thyroid glands. Sirshasana: Sirshasana is one of the finest Yoga poses! Also called as the head stand it acts directly on the thyroid glands, helping to balance the metabolic functions. Matsyasana: This is generally the last asana in practice. In this asana you take the form of Fish, hence matsyasana. This asana provides adequate stretch to the thyroid [...]

Know your asana- DHANURASANA

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