Each time I sit down to write for the blog, I secretly hope that something I write will spark an interest in yoga for someone who has not yet given it a try, or deepen the understanding and commitment of someone who already practices yoga. This time, I am not going to do that. In fact, I am not going to say anything at all, preferring instead to let yoga speak for itself.
So don’t take it from me, but do take a moment to check out this partial list of benefits that you can derive from the practice of yoga. (Check the internet if you wish to find many, many more.)
Ready? Here we go:
Yoga helps you “on the inside” by improving your circulation and respiratory rate, increasing cardiovascular endurance, improving gastrointestinal functions, and strengthening the immune system. It also makes the metabolic system work better, which helps with weight management.
“On the outside”, yoga can help you improve your posture, increase your physical strength and flexibility, elevate your energy level while maintaining a sense of calm, improve you sleep patterns, and help your balance.
And last but not least, yoga can improve your mood, reduce your stress level, help you control anxiety and depression, help you achieve a greater sense of self-confidence and emotional stability, and improve your memory, attention span and ability to concentrate.
(And I will add that you do not have to bend yourself into a pretzel to achieve any of that!!)
I could go on and on and on, as those of you who know me – and those of you who know about the benefits of yoga – can attest. And while everyone would agree that all of these things are “good for us”, there is one more benefit I must include, although you may not find it in the medical journals – yoga is a whole lot of fun.
The practice of yoga has been around for thousands of years. Want to know why? The answer is simple: practicing yoga makes you feel better, on the inside and on the outside.
If you’d like to feel better, then give yoga a try. Visit our website for a list of classes for beginners, come try one, and find out for yourself….
“What would you do if you weren’t afraid?”
As many of you know, I am an avid reader and somewhere in my readings I encountered that phrase and have often pondered its application in my own life when I am having to choose between a number of options. (It was an especially relevant concept when I was contemplating leaving the corporate world and opening a yoga studio!)
Many of our actions are motivated by fear, and that’s not always a bad thing. For example, fear of injury keeps us from running into traffic and fear of pain keeps us from placing a hand on a hot burner. But does fear also put the brakes on the exploration of new activities that could be beneficial to us? Like going to your first yoga class? Or an asana (yoga pose) not yet tried because it looks too hard? Or a pose not attempted without the benefit of a familiar prop? Yes, all too often, when it comes to trying new things, fear motivates us to avoid, stop, or simply remain in the proverbial shallow end of the pool.
One dictionary defines fear as “a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, whether the threat is real or imagined.” How true. But “impending” danger is not the reality of the present moment, and an “imagined” threat may never materialize.
Now I do not advocate throwing all caution to the wind and running willy-nilly into potentially harmful situations, but I do think there is value in sorting through our personal fears and determining whether those fears act as safe-guards that protect us from harm or roadblocks to a more vibrant future. So whether you are considering taking a yoga class for the very first time, or pondering an advanced arm balance that you have been avoiding, ask fear to step aside so you can give it a try. You might be in for a very pleasant surprise.
Don’t miss this chance to study with one of the top yoga teachers and physical therapists in the country. Julie has been teaching at Sunrise Yoga annually since 2012, usually with a focus on anatomy. This year Julie offers an asana workshop with anatomy sprinkled in. The focus will be on the hips and pelvis on Saturday and the upper back and shoulders on Sunday. She will progressively build the content from the ground up, integrating the principles of alignment and injury prevention into the sequence. The learning environment will be supportive and we always have fun!
For students with at least one year yoga experience and no active injuries.
Saturday, March 21: 10 am – 1 pm & 3 pm – 5 pm
Sunday, March 22: 10 am – 1 pm & 3 pm – 5 pm
Total Workshop = $200
Individual Morning Session = $65
Individual Afternoon Session = $50
Julie Gudmestad is a certified Iyengar yoga teacher and a practicing physical therapist from Portland, Oregon. She is the author of the “Anatomy of a Yogi” column in the “Yoga Journal Magazine”. Teaching yoga and conducting workshops throughout the US, Canada and Europe since 1975, Julie integrates her knowledge of the body into the structure of the yoga poses, creating a unique teaching style. Her past workshops have been extremely popular and we are delighted to welcome her back to Sunrise Yoga.
To register for individual sessions or for the full weekend, go to our Events page
Cancellation Policy: If you cancel at least 7 days prior to the workshop, you may receive a full refund minus a 20% administration fee. There are no refunds for cancellations made less than 7 days prior unless your space is filled (if it is filled, you will receive a full refund minus a 20% administration fee). No refunds are available for no-shows. Refunds are given by check and may take up to two weeks.
Many of the headaches that we experience are caused by muscle tension in our backs, necks and shoulders. An article in Yoga Journal shares 13 poses that can help prevent and alleviate tension headaches:
Intense Side Stretch (arms)
Eagle Pose (arms)
Cow Face (arms)
Simple Seated Twist
Reclining Bound Angle Pose
Supported Child’s Pose
Supported Forward Bend
Supported Half Forward Bend
Downward Dog Pose
Legs Up the Wall Pose
For details on the poses and step-by-step instructions on how to do them, find the article at this link: