We asked Marina Gan about how acupuncture can be beneficial to a yoga practice. This is what she had to say:
-Acupuncture helps to remove blockages in your energy, allowing it to circulate more freely. This will give you more space to work with in your body and more mobility in your postures.
– Acupuncture helps you to be a better observer of your body. As a result you are able to work into your postures more mindfully and deepen your practice.
– Acupuncture helps calm the mind and ground your energy, which supports the very foundation of your yoga practice; being present.
– Acupuncture helps you to shed what is no longer serving and experience greater lightness. You can then bring this lightness into your practice and cultivate greater joy and gratitude.
– Practicing yoga keeps you agile and free at the level of structure. This prepares you to more deeply receive these benefits of acupuncture, which works by moving energy that runs along structure.
Marina is offering a workshop on September 14th that will be offering a gentle ear acupuncture treatment at the end! Click here to enroll!!!
Life is marvelous sober. How can I say with love and care that drugs and alcohol mixed with yoga is not yoga? I have noticed a proliferation of drinking and pot smoking in relation to the yoga practice. Mixing intoxication with the practice, especially as yoga teachers, will do a disservice to yourself and your students. It denies what yoga is about. Life is wonderful straight. My teachers have always reminded me that yoga is about the truth, about reality as it is. When we begin to celebrate our yoga experiences with beer and pot what are we teaching? What are we sharing? One of my favorite stories from Yogananda is about his guru’s teachings on the effect of being high in relation to the practice. He says it makes us suitable only to help the animals. What he meant is that when we get intoxicated to relax and connect with others, we never learn to open that part of ourselves without the drug. When we become addicted to intoxicants to relax, we find it difficult to deal with other people while sober. We end up in the forest where there are no troublesome people only animals. We want to help ourselves and other people. Patanjali says that some herbs can open the door to recognize the self but after the door is open, we must come back to the truth of what is, the sober reality of who we are. This is where the work begins. The physical effects of drinking and smoking are detrimental; the effects on the mind are slow but surely as debilitating. I am asking that you live in moderation. As yogis we live as wholesome examples, not too high, not too low, just the middle me.
Sri Dharma Mittra’s presence at Charm City Yoga Fest (August 22-24 in Monkton, MD) is an amazing opportunity and honor to our yoga community. During the last five years, I have had the privilege and fortune to learn from Sir Dharma and during this time have taken his 500hr and 800hr teacher training courses. The following are some things I’ve learned from my personal experience and from teachings I’ve received from Sri Dharma himself.
1. Respect the Teachings:
Do what the teacher says (unless it doesn’t feel OK.) Some of the postures Dharma Mittra (and other teachers from other linages) teachers are not done in the same way as other styles of yoga. For example, Dharma’s downward facing dog. Even though it’s natural for me now to do Dharma’s style of down dog, when I’m in an Ashtanga class or Vinyasa class or any class other than Dharma’s I do the down dog and all the postures how they are prescribed. Don’t assume the way you have been taught is “right” or “wrong”; it’s just different. This goes for any class with any teacher- even if it’s the teacher’s first day. Good students are receptive to all ways and forms.
2. Copy the Teacher:
Sri Dharma tells many stories of his guru and how he learned from his guru by copying him. Sit how the teacher sits, put your hands in the same way as the teacher during mediation & breathing, watch and copy how the teacher moves into yoga postures, ect. Eventually you will gain the teacher’s steadiness and insight.
3. Don’t Move… until the Teacher says so:
This takes discipline. Unless you are in pain, stay in the pose without moving until the teacher says to move- even if you have been in Warrior II for more than 10 breaths. Also, resist the urge to do other variations unless the teacher offers them. If you practice under these guidelines you will soon gain mental and physical strength.
4. Be Receptive:
If you are not sure about the knowledge being imparted by the teacher, do not doubt- instead be receptive to the possibility and then over time check it out for yourself. Be willing to accept that even if something doesn’t make sense or connect with you, doesn’t mean it’s false or won’t be a good fit for someone else.
5. Remove your Expectations:
It is common for us to expect something miraculous from a “famous” and/or well respected teacher- especially if you are searching for something. These expectations often lead to disappointment. Being in the presence of a renowned teacher or guru is an honor. The wisdom they have cannot be imparted or received during one class. The first class is a starting point, and then keep going until there is nothing else to learn.
I’m fairly confident that if you can follow these guidelines in your routine yoga classes you will be amazed at your progress in all aspects of your practice. Namaste.
Sarah Cook is one of the fantastic Charm City Yoga Teachers teaching at Charm City Yoga Fest. We caught up with her to ask a couple questions about the festival
The logo of Charm City Yoga is none other than Ganesha, the remover of obstacles. If you notice his trunk is pointing to the left and this is a common depiction of Ganesha, but why? As it relates to Ganesha: his trunk sweeping left is grabbing a laddu (a sweet ball of flower and sugar) which symbolizes a lunar (cool as opposed to warm) representation of ida nadi in our bodies. Nadis are the channels by which energy flows through the subtle body. Ida controls the mental process of the body. Ganesha is, by reaching for the laddu, granting us access to the fruit or the sweets of our work and more specifically our practice in the material world. So next time you walk into your favorite CCY location, you’ll know what Ganesh is reaching for.
Charm City Yoga Fest is getting closer and closer. We thought you should get a chance to meet the fantastic guest teachers spending a fun-filled weekend with us. This week we would love for you to become acquainted with Mimi Reiger.
From her Web site:
Mimi Rieger, E-RYT has been practicing yoga since 1998 and has been teaching for over ten years. Her physical journey began with ballet at the age of four through her teens and progressed to martial arts and yoga in her twenties to the present day. Mimi is passionate about her wellness exploration and her teaching encourages others to seek their most powerful and evolved selves. Through the practice of yoga and the evolution of the mind/body connection, students will find a greater sense of self and confidence on the mat by taking their physical practice to the next level.
Mimi is registered through Yoga Alliance and received her yoga certification in 2003 at the Ashtanga Yoga Center in Washington, DC. In 2005, she became the first certified Budokon® teacher in the area and is the Regional Director of Budokon® Yoga for Budokon® International. In 2009, she received her Progressive Ashtanga Yoga certification and in 2010 received her Rocket Vinyasa Yoga certification both under David Kyle.
Mimi teaches with a strong yet practical manner encouraging students to push forward, explore and progress past existing practices and barriers in their physical paths. Mimi teaches a variety of classes; all are based on powerful, dynamic movement with creativity and compassion at the helm. Students can expect a full body practice incorporating Sun Salutations, a strong standing series, balances, twists, core work, a seated series and inversions. Full body connectivity is paramount in Mimi’s teaching as she invites students to find balance and build strength as they flow through thoughtful, graceful transitions. Classes are based on the Ashtanga Yoga series with a strong alignment foundation and offer students more advanced variations and postures as they progress through their practice. All students are welcome and each practioner will work at their own level.
A constant seeker, Mimi is consistently studying with her teachers and traveling to trainings, intensives, and retreats to further her knowledge of yoga and her passionate wellness journey.
Learn more at her website!
Welcome to Baltimore’s award winning yoga studios! At Charm City Yoga you will find yoga classes to suit all levels, from beginner to advanced, with a variety of styles, from Asthanga to Vinyasa Flow. If you are new to our studios then we invite you to try our Introductory Month of Unlimited Yoga for just $30.
- 5 Ways That Acupuncture Supports Your Yoga Practice:
- An Interview With Zoe Mai From The Sanskrit Institue
- “Just the Middle Me” by Kim Manfredi
- Stephanie Weikert: Make Peace With Stress
- Martha McAlpine: 3 Questions About Yoga Fest
- Allison Korycki: 3 Questions About Yoga Fest!
- Gabrielle Sulc’s 5 Tips on How to Practice with a Master Teacher
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