Sunday, December 31, 2017

On the 7th Day of Christmas

On the 7th Day of Christmas, SWIM with the swans!  Lying on your belly, squeeze the muscles in the lower body and upper body to raise the body into the shape of a smile.  Keep the neck long, face towards the ground. You can stretch the arms forward or reach back, arms parallel to the body.  This posture strengthens the muscles in the back, bum, legs, and arms.  It stretches the shoulders, chest, belly, and thighs.  It also improves posture, stimulates abdominal organs, and helps relieve stress.  Have a good swim on the 7th Day of Christmas! #zipaDEE12Days

Saturday, December 30, 2017

On the 6th Day of Christmas

On the 6th Day of Christmas, instead of "geese a laying" how about you lay down and take a load off your feet?  Sidle your hips up to a wall or tree, then twist and use the wall or tree to support your legs.  The benefits of resting this way:

reduce edema in legs and feet
relieve tired leg muscles
calm the nervous system
quiet the mind
improve focus and concentration
shift perspective
reverse the effects of gravity on the whole system
help regulate blood pressure
help improve digestion
aid arthritis, anxiety, headaches, insomnia, mild depression, varicose veins, menstrual cramps, PMS, menopausal symptoms
stretch hamstrings, front torso, and back of neck
keep yourself young and vital, enjoy anti-aging effects
relieve mild backache
improve problems of eyes and ears

How can you afford NOT to invest a few moments of the day with your "legs up the wall?!"  Happy 6th Day of Christmas!  #zipaDEE12Days

Friday, December 29, 2017

On the 5th Day of Christmas

This is a yoga sequence, several yoga postures knitted together.  This particular one is a "Sun A."  It is my favorite.  It includes folding, strengthening, back bending~it is a balancing combination of postures!  When you breathe in on a move and breathe out on the next, you calm yourself if you're revved up or energize if you're sluggish. Here's a version of "moving like the sun" you can do in a chair:   Five Golden Rings on the 5th Day of Christmas will help you SHINE!! #zipaDEE12Days

Thursday, December 28, 2017

On the 4th Day of Christmas

FOUR Birds at the Beach
Heron Pose stretches the hamstring of the extended leg.  You can deepen the stretch by pulling the leg and torso closer together.  The down leg is bent and tucked in close to the body, the heel of the foot near your bum.  The down leg may be extended out in front of you if the bending and tucking feels too much like a pretzel!

FLY STRONG like a bird of prey!  Standing strong on one leg, balance, and hold the second leg out behind like tail feathers.  Your arms are the wings and can be to the side, front or back.  Hold your hips square, squeeze your tummy while your belly button reaches for the ground.  Improve your balance and posture while strengthening your ankles, legs, muscles of the back, abdomen and shoulders.

Balancing on one leg, squeeze the tummy muscles and lift the opposite knee, keeping the foot flexed and strong.  Cactus your arms to help with balance.  You are a water bird!  Combine this with the previous pose, go back and forth between the two to strengthen and challenge your balance skills!

Your pigeon can be PROUD or SLEEPING!  You can also turn the pigeon upside down and "thread the needle" to stretch the hip.  Try variations of this hip opening posture:

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

On the 3rd Day of Christmas

On the 3rd Day of Christmas, celebrate THREE!  Be a TRIANGLE with three sides and three corners!  Stand like your feet are balancing on railroad tracks, then take one toe out to the side.  Lift arms into a letter "T," then breathe in.  As you exhale, push the arm over the extended toe and cartwheel towards the toe, reaching the other arm high as you reach low. You should feel a line of energy from fingertip to fingertip.  You can take the legs wider, reach lower, but the idea is to open and expand the chest. This standing posture is strengthening and stretching knees, ankles, hips, legs, core, shoulders, and back, creating balance, relieving stress.  Happy 3rd Day of Christmas! #zipaDee12Days

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

On the 2nd Day of Christmas

On the 2nd Day of Christmas, not two turtle doves . . . just one TURTLE!
Kurmasana or TORTOISE pose in yoga is a deep forward fold.  In general, forward folds calm the body.  In addition, kurmasana also "shuts out sensory distractions."  In B.K.S. Iyengar's Light on Yoga, he also describes the posture as "toning the spine, activating the abdominal organs, and keeping one energetic and healthy."  The idea is this posture helps you feel refreshed like a good nap would.  Keep in mind that postures look different depending on the body working the pose!  Tent your knees and place your hands between your feet.  Maybe work your hands under your knees, reaching behind you!  Your back becomes the shell of the tortoise or "turtle."  Happy 2nd Day of Christmas! #zipaDee12Days 

Monday, December 25, 2017

On the 1st Day of Christmas

On the 1st Day of Christmas, try to be the Christmas Tree! Feel the ground with one foot, really "grow roots" into the earth, and kickstand the other by the ankle or balance it on your calf or thigh. Press the palms together with thumbs to heart, or grow your ornament-filled branches high. Turn on the LIGHTS by turning the corners of your mouth toward your ears!! Happy 1st Day of Christmas!  #zipaDee12Days

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Holiday Yoga Fun

Wrapping up 2017, living"Happily Every After," with Holiday Songs and Stories!

Move with Mrs. Broam and Groove with the Grinch:

Include ALL reindeer in your games, no matter the color of noses!
Rudolph and the Bullies:

Arthur is WORRIED. He's WORRIED he hasn't been good enough for Santa to deliver toys?!  He's WORRIED his handwriting is illegible . . . maybe Santa can't read his letter?  He's WORRIED Santa might not be able to weather the weather at the South Pole? 

How 'bout a PENGUIN RACE, Arthur?  That'll help you with your WORRIES:

Put your "legs up the wall" when you are "pint-sized, pressurized, personal predicament!"  No more "manufracturing?!" You'll be back to manufacturing.

In the New Year, join us for To Infinity and BEYOND Yoga for an “OUT-of-this-WORLD” beginning to 2018:

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Mrs. Broam!

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Ivan, the Shopping Mall Gorilla

We explored the true story of Ivan, the Shopping Mall Gorilla today!

Ivan was transferred to Zoo Atlanta after 27 years in isolation.  We pretended to be animals in the zoo.  We were giraffes, birds, and monkeys.

We also explored postures in Christiane Engel's ABC Yoga~

Here is rainbow with two ends:

Here is a whale breeching!

We shared Thich Nhat Hanh's A Handful of Quiet too.  
In The One and Only Ivan by Karen Applegate, Ivan thinks, "Gorillas are patient like stones.  Humans not so much."  This meditation helped us to be more patient, calm, strong, happy and FREE~

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Deep in the 100 Acre Wood

We had some fun with Winnie the Pooh and Friends today!  We breathed like bees, and we breathed like Rabbit.  We stretched and strengthened like Pooh, Owl, Tigger, and Eeyore.  We pretended to be trees in the 100 Acre Wood.

We practiced being some other elements of nature too.  
Here's EARTH illustrated in the mountain posture.

Then we were WATER flowing as we moved arms up and over and down to a forward fold.

We built FIRE when holding our planks for a ENTIRE MINUTE!!  You can sing the song about Winnie the Pooh one time all the way through, repeat the refrain and that's about a minute.
"Deep in the 100 Acre Wood where Christopher Robin plays,
You'll find the enchanted neighborhood of Christopher's childhood days!"

We breathed in and out in Downward Facing Dog.  This posture builds strength and flexibilty.

Folding the body may calm your body!

Here's Kanga and Little Roo--bouncing, bouncing, bouncing, bouncing -- fun , fun, fun, fun, fun!!

 We slowed down as bears walking to take a rest!
Namaste, Yogi Friends!

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Thanks, Pisgah Peeps!

I really was SURPRISED!
Thanks for coming to Pisgah on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving even though we didn't have a yoga class scheduled!!

I LOVED the birthday card:


I will thoroughly enjoy buying books with the gift card!

Thank you! Thank you!  I honor the place in you that is love, truth, light, and peace~

Sunday, November 19, 2017

A Pourquoi Tale

We explored a Navajo legend this week!  This explanatory tale shares why confusion and chaos abound.  I loved the element of patience (or lack thereof) included.
While listening to the story about stars, we created some with white chalk on black construction paper.

We warmed our bodies for movement by breathing our back down and up, moving from a "cow" . . . 

to a "cat!"

When we move like the sunshine, our closest star, we hold our bodies strong in a plank position.  

We breathe our arms high over our heads as the sun rises too!

First Woman carefully places stars in the night sky to communicate the laws to people . . . 

but Coyote is impatient and scatters all the stars so the people don't know or understand the laws and there is much confusion.

We explore the night sky further with "balancing half moon" posture!

Twisting helps us wrap our yoga practice with a posture and counter posture . . . 

then we REST!

We end our yoga practice with the Namaste song!  
Yoga helps our world be more balanced and less confusing!  
Yoga helps us approach every day with a little more patience.  

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Down the Rabbit Hole . . .

On Wednesday, 11/8, we'll travel down a rabbit hole for an adventure in WONDERLAND!  Just as Alice's adventure involves challenging, perplexing and amusing elements, so will our yoga practice.  Come and share a "happy, ever after" ending to 2017!