Yoga and Arthritis

Posted by September 26, 2019

Arthritis can be a pretty tough problem that can affect anyone. This article will show you a simple and effective way of dealing with it.

What Is Arthritis?

Arthritis is commonly recognized as joint pain and stiffness. Two of the most frequent types of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid disease. Both of these types are causing your tissue to break down, which leads to annoying pains. The truth is that arthritis gets worse and worse as time goes by; if it isn’t treated the pains will bother you more and more. So, if you want to get rid of these incredibly boring and annoying pains that arthritis causes, you might want to start immediately.

Keep in mind that what I will be talking about here can also help you prevent arthritis from happening, in the first place. So, if you are completely healthy you might also want to consider trying this method, just as a method of precaution. So, what is this method that can be good not only for getting rid of arthritis but for your general health as well?

Can Yoga Help You With Arthritis?

Yoga is a way of connecting your mind and body. It is effective in strengthening both of those fields. So yes, you can think of yoga like of a sport. Many people make the mistake of thinking that yoga is only suitable for women and that yoga isn’t a challenge at all. Wrong! Yoga consists of movements that may bring you many, many different benefits. In that list of benefits you may also find strength.

I agree, yoga can’t bring you all of those muscles that you wanted, but bear with me! Yoga can bring you so much more. You can use yoga as an add-on to your training methods. It has been proven in a very thorough medical study that yoga is an effective way of solving arthritis. Doctors either advise yoga as a full and only therapy for beating arthritis, or in combination with something else. Either way, people have been solving their arthritis problems with yoga for decades now.

There was another study conducted on a group of people with severe cases of arthritis. They were practicing yoga for 8 weeks, two times a week. They were also advised to do yoga at home when they can. After those 8 weeks the results were astonishing as many benefits of yoga came to the surface.

On top of all this, yoga doesn’t take much of your time. If you are busy with work or have other activities you want to attend, you can definitely combine them with yoga as 30 minutes are often enough for a decent yoga practice. The previously mentioned research had its patients do yoga for 50 minutes, and they were under severe arthritis pain.

The final verdict

Well, I hope you have got enough information in order to make up your mind and start doing yoga. The benefits are clear and the rest is up on you. Find a suitable class that you can join or learn through the internet.

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Yoga with Weights

Posted by July 26, 2019

Practicing yoga with weights makes for a mighty workout and a great way to strengthen the upper body. To combine weights and yoga, you will need a couple of dumbbell weights. You don’t want your weights to be too heavy because you will be holding them for an extended period of times. A set of 5-pound weights is more than enough.

Instructions On How To Use Yoga Weights

Once you have your weights, place at the side of your yoga mat. Hop on your mat and do a few basic yoga stretches to wake up and heat the body. Begin breathing deep and slow, relaxing face, and gaze. 

Balancing Table Pose With Weights

  • For the first pose, come to tabletop pose, on all fours. Roll the arms forward and back to warm up the shoulders and activate your arms full range of motion. 
  • From tabletop pose, reach for your dumbbell with the right hand. 
  • Extend your left leg up and back. Roll the left thigh downwards and make sure your hips are lined up. Point the toes down. 
  • Reach your right arm straight out, holding the weight, in front of you to counter the extended leg in back. 
  • Inhale and extend the limbs away from the body.
  • As you exhale, pull elbow and the knee in together and pull the dumbbell in close towards you. 
  • Repeat on the same side three more times. So inhale and lift, exhale round and contract. 
  • Then, place the weights down on the floor.
  • Reach your right arm around to the back of the mat. Catch hold of your foot (if you want to loop a yoga strap to assist in reaching the foot you can). Press the foot into the palm of your hands. It helps stretch the spine and the quadriceps muscles. 
  • Release the leg down. Curve your upper back in cat pose. Then return to a neutral tabletop pose. 
  • Repeat the sequence with the weights on the opposite side in which the left arm extends with the weight and the right leg extends straight back. 

Chair Pose With Weights

  • Fold-down into standing forward bending pose. 
  • Bring your feet inwards, so that your big toes touch each other, and the heels about an inch apart. 
  • Grab ahold of your weights. Bend the knees, drop the hips, and reach your arms overhead. Biceps along with the ears. Bend your knees as much as you can. 
  • Inhale to lift and stretch slightly up. 
  • Exhale, bend the elbows. Squeeze your shoulder blades behind you. 
  • Inhale, re-extend the arms up. Exhale to bend. 
  • Repeat the arms rise motion three more times. 
  • Then, fold forward and carefully drop the weights down. Relax your neck. 
  • Lift your back halfway up (flat back position). 
  • Exhale, fingertips to the floor and stretch into a low lunge with the knee on the floor, arms raised overhead. Repeat on the other side. 

After practicing chair pose and balancing tabletop pose, you will have strengthened the body in a short amount of time. Enjoy!

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Yoga hiking has not been the talk of the town yet. Most people would think of yoga as something that you can do at home, at the gym, or in any private area. To most people, yoga is considered an indoor activity. However, you can take yoga to the next level by combining it with hiking. But what kind of outfit is perfect for performing both hiking and yoga at the same time? We have come up with 7 reasons why compression leggings are good for hiking yoga.


  • Good For Blood Circulation

When it comes to performing a heavy activity like hiking, you will need comfortable clothes. For the most part, with yoga, you can easily put on something and still be able to practice the poses easily. As long as you make sure that the yoga outfits you are wearing are not too bulky, you should be fine. When hiking, you need clothes that help in maintaining your body’s regular circulation. Thus, the reason why compression garments are a good choice. They help in relieving body pain, circulation problems, and edema.


  • Improve Performance

Since you will be hiking and doing yoga at the same time, wearing a pair of compression pants will improve your performance. For example, lower-leg compression sleeves are said to be able to improve one’s endurance during running. In the long run, the health benefits of wearing compression garments are huge.


  • Reduced Muscle Fatigue

By the time you reach your final hiking destination while hiking, you will want energy leftover to perform yoga. Thus, reducing your muscle fatigue is one of the top needs when it comes to wearing any workout clothes for women and men. Your typical yoga legging won’t be able to do this unless it is specifically designed to do so. Therefore, it is also one of the reasons why you should opt for these pants.


  • Offers Comfort

What’s better than having a pair of compression pants that offer both health benefits and comfort? The reason why most runners choose to wear them during practice is because of the comfort they provide. 

  • Helps with Recovery

If you are prone to suffering from muscle soreness while performing heavy activities, it is really recommended for you to wear compression pants. It is because they assist in recovering your muscle from those strenuous activities. When performing hiking yoga, you will not only be focusing on the hiking part itself but also the yoga poses. Luckily, any compression leggings women and men can wear will bring benefits to the recovery process.

It is advised to wear the right pants when it comes to yoga hiking. Because of the pressure during hiking, your body might be exhausted once you reach your final destination. Wearing the correct compression pants will allow you to do both activities at once with ease. After all, yoga is said to be relaxing and allows your body to feel entirely in the state of calmness.

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Yoga for Better Sleep

Posted by March 16, 2019

Yoga serves many purposes in our lives; it serves as an exercise, it strengthens and calms the mind, it can help us wake up in the morning, and it can also help lull us to sleep. Not only will it give us a better sleep, allowing for us to wake up feeling refreshed and ready to start the day, but it is also convenient as we can practice it in the comfort of our own bed. 

You can use many of the poses that you already practice during your daily routine and apply them to your nighttime ritual. As a result, any build-up of stress throughout the day will be reduced, tension will be released from your body, and your mind will finally be still. 

Follow some of these tips to allow yourself a restful sleep and to bring about a sense of peace to your nighttime routine. Get yourself ready for bed and get ready for some soothing zzz’s. 

Atmosphere

The right environment is a critical element of setting yourself up for a great sleep. Feel free to add in some candles, incense, and even a lavender spray or sleep mask to help create a place of peace. Use whatever that makes you feel ready to fall asleep. If you do choose to use candles for your perfect atmosphere, remember to blow them out before you fall asleep, or select the battery-operated candles to take away one less worry on your mind. 

Select Your Poses And Intention

Choose poses that are easy on your body, provide great relaxation, and help ease tension within your body. Some great poses that are easy to accomplish on your bed are: 

  • Legs on the wall (or headboard)
  • Seated forward fold
  • Folded pigeon
  • Child’s pose 
  • Reclined twist

Once you have completed your poses, the last pose you should end with is as always, the Corpse Pose, or Savasana

An intention is a great way to set yourself up for success. There is no wrong intention to pick for your sequence. I like to include my gratitude for the day, my hope for a restful sleep, and my expectation of waking up refreshed. 

Following Along With A Sequence

As your bedtime yoga shouldn’t be too long of a sequence, you will want to take into consideration that each pose is meant to be held for a few minutes; so, choose your course accordingly. It is perfectly acceptable only to select five key poses and hold each one for three minutes, to give yourself a total of around 15 minutes. 

If you are unsure how to set this up, some applications can be downloaded on your devices to help guide you through a bedtime sequence. You may even find videos online, but make sure to set your screen to night time viewing to lessen any interference with your melatonin levels. 

Extra Tips

A great way to begin your yoga bedtime sequence is with some reflective thinking followed with some mediation. It is a great way to get your mind ready to shut off for the night. 

Breathing in yoga is an integral part; the same can be said for breathing during a nighttime sequence. Try a breathing technique known as 4-7-8, which requires you to breathe in through your nose for a count of 4, hold onto your breath for a count of 7, and then out for a final count of 8. It may take a bit to build up to being able to do this, but it is worthwhile to try. 

Combining yoga with your bedtime routine is a great way to ensure a better sleep; and for you to wake up feeling rejuvenated and ready to take on the day. Do what works best for you, play around with it, and get ready to drift off into a peaceful slumber. 

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That closet, you know the one, yeah, the one that is stuffed full of a huge variety of yoga wear. It is okay, many people have it, even some people who do not practice yoga any more. You can get a lot more wear out of them by adding your yoga clothing to stylish outfits you can wear anywhere. Dressing up yoga pants, shirts, and even whole yoga outfits can be a simple way to get more from your clothes.

Yoga Pants

Many yoga pants can be passed off as great pants in the office or just out shopping. First, let’s dress up a pair of yoga pants that have a legging cut. Like any other type of leggings, a nice sweater is going to pair well. Other long dress shirts will go well too, and unlike actual leggings, you are not going to have to worry about your pants being see through. This means you can get away with shirts that do not come all the way down to mid-thigh.

Wide-leg yoga pants are also a great piece for everyday wear, if you pair it with the right shirt. A nice shirt that hugs your curves is going to work nicely. Together, you can have a quick, easy, and comfortable outfit that looks awesome.

Yoga Shirts

Shirts that are designed for yoga come in so many different cuts, styles, and patterns. With this amount of variety, it is easy to find something that goes great with a simple pair of jeans. If you are looking for something more business casual, many yoga shirts can go well with a pair of dress pants. A colorful print yoga shirt, with a solid pair of dress pants, topped off with a blazer can pass as being business wear in a number of different offices. Do not let it clothing being classified as yoga wear stop you from using it to create stylish outfits.

Dressing-up Entire Yoga Outfits

You can combine both of the above steps and create great looking outfits entirely out of yoga wear. You know you look good at the studio in it, adding a little bit more can finish it up well for other locations. Take the classic yoga legging, and pair it with a great flowy yoga tank. Great for the studio, now just spice it up with some accessories, and you are ready to take on the rest of the world. Add a scarf and some earrings to make the whole look come together. A stunning pair of shoes can also turn any yoga outfit into an ensemble to wear on the town.

To close up, the important part is to remember that being yoga wear does not make an article of clothing any less awesome. These are pieces of clothing that can easily be added into your day to day wardrobe. It is quite easy to use these pieces, and mix them up, to create styles that are comfortable, look great, and rock your yoga wear wherever you would like.

 

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The words “yoga retreat” usually conjures up images of exotic locales, but the United States has a lot to offer too. If you’ve ever had any interest in attending a yoga retreat but you don’t have the time or money to spend on a weeklong yoga retreat outside of the country, consider trying one in your own backyard. Yoga retreats can be found all over the country, in almost every state, but finding the right one for you depends on what kind of yoga retreat you are looking for.

No matter what yoga retreat you end up escaping to, the benefits will be the same. Attending a yoga retreat will help take your yoga practice to the next level, gain a new perspective by visiting a new place, provide you with the right environment for meditation, and help you relax and de-stress. Plus you’ll have healthy food provided to you without having to put in any work and you can digitally detox, create new habits, make new friends, and step away from home long enough to start appreciating it again.

Here are 5 of the best yoga retreats in the US for your next vacation:

White Lotus Foundation Retreat Center, Santa Barbara, CA

The White Lotus retreat center was founded in 1983 by Ganga White, one of the country’s most well-known yogis, and has served as a gathering place for devoted yogis for decades. The campus sits in the mountains overlooking Santa Barbara with a view of the Pacific Ocean in the other direction. At the White Lotus, you’ll feel close to nature while saluting the sun surrounded by mountains and sea. Retreats are offered year-round with scheduled activities like daily yoga, hiking, silent meditation, swimming, and gourmet vegetarian meals.

Omega Institute, Rhinebeck, NY 

The Omega Institute is set on 250 sprawling acres in the breathtaking Hudson Valley. The nonprofit center devoted to well-being offers rigorous and restorative yoga workshops as well as wellness vacations. Retreats are available spring through fall with daily classes in yoga, tai chi, movement, and meditation.

Big Sky Yoga Retreats, Bozeman, MT

Big Sky Yoga Retreats is located an hour north of Yellowstone National Park and is surrounded by lush green forests, snow-capped mountains, and refreshing waterfalls. This yoga retreat center is best known for its offerings of a blend of yoga and horseback riding. All levels of yoga are accommodated, and the retreats offer two yoga sessions per day including lessons in restorative and vinyasa flow yoga. Escape to this yoga retreat to enjoy starlit nights, a mountain-themed cuisine, and a superb wine list.

Sedona Mago Retreat, Sedona, AZ

The Sedona Mago Retreat center is perfect for stressed-out vacationers who want to enjoy the 163-acres of red rock formations, Native American ruins, majestic mountains, and lush green gardens. Sedona Mago allows you to escape from the hustle and bustle of modern life and enjoy specially curated programs for holistic healing like Stress to Strength. Additional offerings include yoga classes, chakra readings, meditation classes, and mindful breathing.

Kalani, Pāhoa, HI

If the mainland United States doesn’t interest you, then escape to Kalani, a yoga retreat center located on 120 acres of Hawaii’s Big Island. Founded by Joel Tan, the yoga center is nestled between the tropical jungle and the Pacific Ocean and includes rich offerings in exploring Hawaiian culture. One of the largest yoga retreat centers in the region, Kalani offers more than 50 classes per week in a dozen styles of yoga.

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Mala Beads

Posted by January 4, 2018

Yoga can be very physically demanding. However, the hardest part of yoga derives from the mental ability to meditate rather than the physical capabilities of the body. Even the most practiced yogis have a hard time clearing their minds in order to get the most out of a yoga practice. The true benefits of yoga do not only strive from the movements of the body but also from the meditation of the mind. Mala beads are a beautiful addition to yoga practitioners because they help aid in the mental aspect of the practice.

Mala beads show a devotion to the yoga practice. They consist of 108 beads with the addition of a guru bead that is specifically used for meditation and prayer. These mala beads include gemstones that expel certain energies and are sacred to the yoga practice. The reasoning behind the 108 beads is derived from Hinduism. 108 is considered a sacred number in the Hindu religion. 1 representing your own highest truth, 0 representing emptiness in spiritual practice, and 8 representing infinity and timelessness. The mala is a representation of whatever the wearer wants it to be.

Different gemstones add different energies and meanings to a mala. Two examples of gemstones used in mala beads are jade and turquoise. Jade is used to bring relaxation and prosperity to the practice. Traditionally, jade has been used to bring good luck to those that wear it. Turquoise is another power gemstone to use in a mala. It is used to bring healing to the practice by repairing both physical and mental injuries. Turquoise is also used to aid the wearer in warding off negative influences. The type of gemstone chosen by the practitioner is connected to what they wish to achieve during their practices.

Mala beads are very simple to use. To use mala beads for meditation, you must first choose a comfortable spot to sit with your spine straight and eyes closed. After finding a comfortable position, a few deep breaths should be taken to center and align yourself. A mantra can be used here and chanted aloud or repeated silently.

  1. The mala beads should be held within your right hand, draped between your middle and index fingers.
  2. Begin at the guru bead and use your thumb to count each of the 108 smaller beads until you reach the guru bead again.
  3. If you want to meditate more after circling back to the guru bead, simply count the beads again in the opposite direction.

Clarity and calmness can be extremely hard to achieve but are a necessity in both meditation and yoga practices. Mala beads are a great way to achieve this clarity and calmness by counting the beads during meditation or simply wearing it during yoga practice. The gemstones also are beneficial in adding more to the mala beads with their specific energies. Mala beads can also be used outside of meditation and yoga. It is becoming more common for people to wear their mala beads as a necklace or bracelet on a regular basis. This helps people to keep their affirmations and alignment throughout daily routines.

However, some people see mala beads as very sacred and keep their beads in their sacred place. Mala beads kept in sacred places offer a beautiful energy and add unique texture and color to space. Each mala is special and should always be chosen for the specific needs and wants of the wearer. The right mala can bring a wonderful sense of energy to meditation and yoga practice and help the wearer grow physically and spiritually.

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