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I Love Yoga Nidra

Published on October 9, 2014 by in Meditation, Yoga

I Love Yoga Nidra

Plain and simple.

I made it through the self-imposed “30 Yoga Nidras in 30 Days” challenge without missing one day.  Having practiced yoga regularly for over 14 years, I can say that this is the very first meditation practice that I have done daily, and since the benefits of more energy, mental clarity, and bursts of creativity continue to unfold, I have to ask myself,  ”Why did you wait so long?”   Intellectually, through studying Yoga Nidra, and experientially, through sporadic practice, I have known its power.  However, 30 days in a row has taken this “knowing” to a whole new level!

If you are not familiar with Yoga Nidra, specifically Satyananda Yoga Nidra™, it is a guided meditation practices that first and foremost fully relaxes and rejuvenates both body and mind.  It has been shown that with regular practice that when the body and mind are relaxed and quiet then deeper levels of transformation in ones personality can take place.

My students have listened to me go on and on about the challenge and benefits of the practice in general, and that, coupled with some gentle chiding, I have managed to get at least one student to take the challenge and quite a few more to begin to practice Yoga Nidra regularly outside of class time.  I think that some are beginning to believe me.  I can see it on their faces.

Since I finished the 30 day challenge a few days ago I have continued to practice and plan to do so daily because honestly, I am afraid to stop.  It really has been that good.

Sure, life isn’t perfect every moment but I am noticing that there are more perfect moments.  Life seems to be getting easier too. Easier in that it seems that I am inconvenienced less, things seem to be going my way more often,  not to mention the random people smiling at me.  Really, I am getting smiled at more.  Seems like magic.  But most likely it is my attitude and the energy I am carrying around with me.

“You get what you give” I guess.

I have been given so much through the Satyananda tradition and I am doing what I can to pass on what I have learned to others.

So today I am giving you a Yoga Nidra practice .

So you can love it too.

 

 

 

 
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DOSTS-Days On Skates This Summer

Published on September 25, 2014 by in Fitness

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In the words of Seals & Croft (yes, I am that old and kind of a hippy) “Summer breeze makes me feel fine…”

But as usual, it has come and gone way too fast.

As always, I am sad to see it  go but I can say that when it came to skating, I certainly made the most out of this summer.

From the beginning to the end I managed 32 DOSTS (Days On Skates This Summer).  For someone who usually laments about not making enough time to skate, I can finally say that I skated as much as I wanted to.  Keeping a pair of skates by the door at home and one in my car, I was always ready when the opportunity presented itself, and by my calculations, it was just about 1 out of 3 days!

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It has been such a pleasure to skate from “wherever” knowing that while I am doing it I am not only having a chance to explore “my world” in a unique way, but that I am also getting an unparalleled workout on my hips, glutes, and thighs. Sure, I could go to the gym and do bunch of squats and nautilus for similar results but why would I want to do that when skating does the same thing with fresh air and much better view!

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My favorite skates this summer by far have been with my daughter.  Visiting friends, getting ice cream,  joining in a parade, or just skating with no destination in mind, I am completely impressed with her ability to negotiate the sidewalks and streets.  Since a  majority of her skating  has been in the confines of an ice rink it is amazing how easily she has transferred her ability to defy gravity on ice blades to defying gravity on 8 wheels!

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Although the weather is starting to turn and  I will have to wait another 9 months for the “Sweet days of summer.. .”   I am still hopeful to accumulate some DOSTF (Days On Skates This Fall).  So far, so good as I am 2 out of 4 days!

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A special thanks to my good friend and skating instructor Franc Pirc from Slovenia who served as my DOSTS inspiration!  Dreaming of a seaside skate with you soon!

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30 Yoga Nidras in 30 days

Shavasana Beach
We have finished the second week of classes at Cleveland State University and the yoga classes I am teaching this semester are in full swing. My experience this week has been “Watch for what you wish for” in that I gave up all health/wellness and other physical education classes at the university to concentrate on teaching only yoga and skating.  So this semester I am teaching 9 hours a week of yoga in 2 days;  4 hours of back to back classes on Monday and 5 hours of back to back classes on Wednesday. As I said, “Watch what you wish for.”

Group of Students During  Yoga Nidra

While it is pretty intense teaching so  many classes in a row,  I cannot help but feel a tremendous sense of gratitude for being given this opportunity. The classes are full, the students are eager to learn, and I am fortunate to be an ambassador of yoga to so many.  Knowing that this is a very big responsibility; representing the Satyananda lineage, my obligation to the university, etc. I understand that to successfully meet my obligations, I need to keep up with my own practice.  If that suffers, my delivery will suffer, and so will my students.

Hence the “30 Yoga Nidras in 30 days” challenge that I am self imposing.

There are different guided mediations that are called “yoga nidra” out there, but the one that I will be doing is specific to the Satyanada tradition.

Satyananda Yoga Nidra™ is a guided meditation practice devised by Sri Swami Satyananda Saraswati. It is a systematic practice that guides the practitioner into a state of complete physical and mental rest.  It is often called “physic sleep” because the body rests fully, the mind rests, but the practitioner stays conscious throughout, unlike normal sleep where we are unconscious.

Among numerous benefits, it is believed that 20 minutes of this practice is worth about 2 hours of sleep! For those of you who are like the 100 college students, faculty, and staff that take my classes, you are most likely sleep deprived.  If  this is true for you,  then this practices is a “must do” and it is why I include it in my lesson plans a minimum of once per week for each class.

When it comes to being a yoga teacher it is important to practice what you preach.  So I have decided that yoga nidra will be my constant.  I have practiced yoga nidra regularly for over 14 years, but have never practiced daily, and certainly not 30 days in a  row.

You can join in with this challenge by going to the following link Yoga Nidra Downloads and scroll down the page and you will find a few Yoga Nidra recordings as well as other breathing and meditation exercises.  You can also find additional recordings through the Atma Center.

In our hectic fast paced lives we truly need to carve out time daily to relax our body and mind.  It is a “must do” for me, it will be a “must do” for my classes (at least once per week!)  and should be a “must do” for you!

Experience the physical and mental benefits of yoga nidra by starting today!

Let me know how it is going by checking in on the Mobile Yoga Workout page on Facebook.

Hari Om Tat Sat

 
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