Uplifting Yoga for Winter Days [VIDEO]

uplifting yoga for winter days

 

If you are in the Northern Hemisphere, you probably can feel the shorter days affecting you? I know I can. Up here in the Northwest Territories it’s dark when I wake up and dark again by 4pm. Winter can sometimes have negative effects leading us to fear its arrival. However, winter can also be an opportunity to slow down, embrace being creative and connect with yin and kapha energies.

This short (10 min) winter yoga flow is for people for whom the darkness is scary and an unwelcome season in their life. For people who want to know how to channel or harness the winter energy. For people who want to let go of the past and move into the new year and the new light with new energy and new vision for their life.

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Hope you enjoy!

xoxo

Krystal

 

Tips for Your First Yoga Class

Curious about yoga but afraid to try it out?

I will be offering a new round of my Empowerment Yoga for Beginners class, starting April 19th, and I know that yoga can be intimating if you’ve never tried it before. However, yoga is a beautiful practice that can be beneficial to your overall health. Here are a few tips for your first yoga class to ensure that your experience as a beginner is as smooth, beautiful and healing as can be!

Short version - yoga tipsTip 1: Be an earlybird

We all have our zone of comfort and arriving early to       meet with the teacher, set yourself up, and pick your favourite spot, will help you begin your first class from a more relaxed place.

Tip 2: Dress for comfort

Speaking of comfort, you want to wear clothes that you feel comfortable in and that will also allow you to move your body. Dressing in layers is a great idea because, depending on the style and flow of the class, you may be warmer or cooler. Most classes end with a pose called Savasana, where you will be laying on the floor in a relaxed state for a few minutes, and you don’t want to miss out on the bliss that is Savasana by being chilly.

Tip 3: It’s about Practice, not Perfection

Please do not worry about what the other students’ poses look like or even how the teacher appears in the pose. Every body is different and every body has different needs. Always practice in a way that is minimizing your risk for injury while maximizing the benefits of yoga. One of my favourite things to remind students about is that we always adapt the poses for our body’s needs rather than trying to adapt our body to the pose. Yoga is a practice not a state of perfection.

Tip 4: Choose wisely

How do you know how to adapt a pose? Look for a teacher who will offer modifications for any needs you might have like an injury, illness or life stage. This goes back to 1 – Be an earlybird so that you can discuss any needs or concerns with your teacher. It’s also a great idea to check out the different styles of yoga offered where you live online beforehand so that you can make an informed choice. Not all styles of yoga are the same so you want to choose the best one for your needs.

Tip 5: The 8 limbs of Yoga

Most classes focus on the physical aspect of yoga, asana, or poses. In truth, asana is just one of the eight limbs of yoga, which also include guidance for everyday life, breathwork and meditation. Asana was primarily developed to allow the yogis to sit in meditation for longer periods of time. So I invite you again to let go of worrying about how “perfect” your poses are, and maybe notice more what is happening in your mind during your asana practice. How we show up for yoga is how we show up for life.

Tip 6: “I really regret going to yoga” said no one EVER!

Yoga is an incredible practice offering so many benefits to our bodies, minds and spirits when it is practiced safely and with awareness.

I hope this guide helps you to feel ready to start your own yoga journey and I hope to see you on a yoga mat soon! You can register for my upcoming beginner class here.

Love,

Krystal

E-BOOK: SPRING BREAK YOGA GAMES FOR KIDS!

Kids yoga gamesClick here to access your free E-book!

For many of you, it will be week two of Spring Break with the kids home. In honour of this time that can leave parents wondering what to do with all that time at home, I am offering you my “4 Yoga-based Games to Play with Your Kids E-book” – 4 Yoga-based Games including, Balloon Breathing, The Gardening Game, Blind Balance Challenge and Boat Relaxation (audio).

I would love to see some photos of you and your little ones playing together. Please feel free to share any photos and let me know what you think.

Happy Spring Break!
Krystal

The Emily Jean" title="Guest post by Emily Jean: Why I’m never exercising again!">

The Emily Jean

 

The Emily Jean

 

Exercise might as well be a 4­-letter-­word in my book. And as much as I love to cuss, that word really makes my skin crawl. It ranks right up there with “moist” ­- which as all my friends know, is only referred to as “the M word.”

For me, exercise was always done to one extreme or another. Just like dieting & bingeing. Exercising meant 6 days/week barre workouts, 2-­hour cardio sessions, 1/2 marathon training or Crossfit WOD’s where I got so dizzy I couldn’t actually walk. OR, the backlash of exhaustion, frustration and disgust with myself where you’d find me curled up on the couch with a book.

Exercise was never done for FUN. Only for weight loss. For shrinking my body to something it wasn’t naturally. And when I finally got exhausted by one obsessive exercise, I’d realize I was miserable, give the gym a big middle finger and crawl back to my couch no matter how close I seemed to be to the illusive “thigh gap” I thought I needed.

Utterly defeated.

Until I’d wake up again from another food & fiction­-reading binge to berate myself for my disgustingness and repeat the whole damn thing again.

Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

Restrict. Binge. Repent.

Exercise was always BFF’s with dieting. So when I broke up with dieting, I broke up with exercise. For a bit it sort of looked like another couch ­binge­fest, but something had shifted. Instead of waking up in a blind panic of self-­hatred, convinced

I MUST CHANGE MY BODY NOW!

I woke up with a different mindset. Just as I had in finding balance with food.

Now that I’d made the decision to choose foods from a place of self-­love versus deprivation and self­hatred, what if I did the same for the way I moved my body?

It started slowly, just stepping away from computer work for a break and instead of going to the kitchen, I’d head outside for walk.

Around the same time I started going to yoga classes regularly. The thought of yoga being “exercise” wasn’t even there. Yoga was just MOVEMENT. It was quiet, it was ME time. I wasn’t there to “tone my abs” or squat my way to a better booty. I was just there to move. To see what would happen.

What happened was pretty freaking awesome.

Without even realizing it, my body started being capable of things I’d never even considered. My arms got stronger, all of a sudden down-­dog actually was the “resting pose” those damn instructors kept going on about.

And then? Well then all of a sudden a headstand became my favorite way to start the day, or bust me out of a crap­-mood.

And instead of quantifying every class by how many calories I must have burned, I tuned into how my body and my mind felt after class.

Tired. Alive. Thankful.

Now the question each day becomes, “How do I want to move today? What will make me feel more alive, more IN MY BODY?’

Right now it looks like a lot of walking, some short runs when I have a bunch of pent up energy, occasional biking, and yoga nearly every day.

The difference now is that this movement, this connection to my body is me treating myself with LOVE. It’s not “exercise” it’s movement. The distinction has made all the difference for me, and comes from a place of FUN.

No psychotic boot-­camp-­Barbie yelling at me to get my ass “bikini ready,” or crazed WOD-­heads bonding over the fact that their legs gave out on them when they walked to their car.

Nuh uh, no more. And it’s kinda great.

~ * ~

 

So what’s your relationship to “the E word”? Have you found a way to move from a place of love instead of forcing yourself to need to change?

Share your experience in the comments and let me know what works for you or where you struggle to make this a part of your body and life-love adventure!

Emily Jean is a Certified Holistic Health Coach who specializes in working with women to heal their broken relationships with food, movement & their bodies. Together she helps them create balance throughout their lives, so they can start living and loving life RIGHT NOW instead of “when I lose 15lbs.”

Emily would like to invite any of Krystal’s followers to contact her at hello{at}theemilyjean{dot}com to inquire about a FREE PowerSoul Session. If you are tired of the constant diet roller coaster, looking for balance in food & movement so you can finally LOVE your body and your life, be sure to get in touch with her!