The Power of Mountain Pose

Early in my yoga career, I attended a class In which the instructor spent 10-15 minutes on Mountain Pose, or Tadasana in Sanskrit.  I recall being immersed in it at the time, and puzzled later.  How could standing on one’s own two feet be so complicated?  I also recall being amused – and bemused – that Mountain Pose even had a name as a distinct pose.  And teachers seemed to think it had to be practiced!

I thought I “got it” ...

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Classes this Week

Dear Colleagues in yoga  –

I’m back from vacation, but just barely! I particularly enjoyed the North Carolina Arboretum in Asheville, where the Mountain Laurel was in full bloom.

In the L1 and L2 classes, we’ll practice twists and chest-opening poses – it’s good for the innards. Neck and shoulders is the focus for the Thursday afternoon “thera” class.

Here’s the schedule:

  • Tuesday, Branches Yoga, 2424 Drayton, 9:30-11:00 am, L2
  • Tuesday, Branches Yoga, 2424 Drayton, 11:30 am – 12:45 pm, L1/Gentle
  • Wednesday, ...
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Subtlety in standing poses… It’s a healing thing!

It’s the first week of May…and time for standing poses.  We keep returning to them; they are our familiar friends that help us build strength and stability.

This past few days in Denver, participating in a Low Back Workshop sponsored by the Iyengar Yoga National Association U.S. (IYNAUS), I experienced unexpected subtleties in standing poses.  A masterful and incredibly skilled teacher, Manouso Manos, shared his knowledge and skills from years of observing and working with the Iyengars in the medical classes ...

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Restorative classes this week

Hi all –

  • Restorative classes this week!
  • Regular schedule for Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday classes in Savannah and Hilton Head.
  • Gayle Caporale and Patte Ranney are teaching the Special Topic (therapeutic) classes this week at Island Yoga:  Yoga for Osteoporosis at 1:00 pm Monday (Gayle) and 1:00 pm Thursday (Patte).
  • Lisa Waas is coming to Branches Yoga on June 13, 2:00-4:30 pm, to give a nifty workshop on backs and backbending.  Lisa is fun, energetic, dedicated, and a skilled teacher.  Click to the link ...
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The Pune Cycle and Backbends

Dear fellow Sadakhas (practitioners, students)

Every month, Iyengar yoga classes all over the world follow a similar cycle of study.  It’s called the “Pune” or “India” cycle, named after Pune, India, the location of the Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute, or RIMYI.  The cycle defines a different area focus for practice each week, as follows:

  1. Standing  poses
  2. Forward bends
  3. Backbends
  4. Restorative poses and pranayama

During each week a variety of poses are practiced, but there’s an emphasis or focus on one family of poses.  In this ...

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Symmetry and Balance

Dear Friends and Colleagues in Yoga –

The eye is drawn to symmetry and balance. This is one of my favorite photos from a class at Ganesha’s Place (now closed). Even though each pair of legs is a little different in shape and length, there is symmetry around the vertical lines defined by gravity. The floor provides a firm, even surface for the spine and head. My breath slows and becomes more even just looking at these practitioners in Viparita Karani ...

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Branches Yoga

Transitions and Change

March-April is a time of transition and change. It’s delightful, it’s exciting…but transitions and change can also be a strain on the mind and body. Then we must listen carefully, noticing when we need more rest, some moments of quiet, or perhaps we need to move physically. My yoga colleague and friend Chris O’Brien said in her blog this week that “…Yoga…teaches me to listen more to my body and heart than to my mind/ego when it comes to decision making.”

Any yoga ...

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Jann Boyer Yoga

Awareness in Yoga

“Awareness must be like the rays of the sun, extending everywhere, illuminating all.”  BKS Iyengar

This week in classes we’ll explore a well-rounded asana practice – some standing poses, seated poses, twists, maybe even a revolved pose or two, and some back extensions  (plus – of course – inversions in the Level 2 classes).  Sometimes we delve into a certain pose, discussing various ways to approach it.  Other times, it’s useful to keep a steadier pace and a quieter, more introspective ...

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Springtime and Snow Cupcakes

These Johnny Jump-Ups looked so brave and cheerful at my sister’s house in Texas – it was a promise of Spring.  And here we are, just a week later, feeling the warmth of that promise in the air.  March is a month of change, and activities being to pick up.  Two of those are affecting the class schedule this week:

  • In light of the St Patrick’s Day celebrations in Savannah – which is quite a party, I understand – ...
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Jann Boyer Yoga

The strong, silent type

Last week in Texas there was snow.  In March.  In the early morning, looking out from the front porch at my mother’s house, the trees were outlined sharply against the white snow, and it was quiet.  A few inches of snow is small stuff to those in more northerly parts of the country, but with the underlying ice, it brought activity to a halt in north Texas. The roads were quiet, the fields were silent.  It was lovely.

This week in ...

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