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The Hugger Mugger Yoga Blog

Celebrate The Journey

  • Protect Your Wrists in Chaturanga

    I remember the first time I was able to hold myself up in Chaturanga Dandasana. After spending a year struggling with lifting my body off the floor, it was truly thrilling. Later on, I can remember being amazed that I could make it through 108 jump-through sun salutations without crashing and burning.

    Now, 30-some years later, I still practice it, but I’m much more focused on quality than quantity.

    The thrill of Chaturanga does not come without possible pitfalls. Chronic wrist pain has emerged as a common yoga-related injury. Chaturanga requires that our wrists support a significant percentage...

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  • The Hugger Mugger Catalog: A History

    Back in 1986, when Sara Chambers founded Hugger Mugger Yoga Products, she couldn’t have predicted its future. From its humble beginnings of a single strap and pair of shorts, the company has cultivated a worldwide community.

    In order to build that community, Sara knew she had to get the word out. Back then, the flagship for any mail-order business was their catalog. But how to begin?

    Sara and I knew each other from public classes she attended and I assisted. At the time, my day job was as a darkroom technician for a photographer, Butch Adams. Sara enlisted...

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  • Meatless Monday: Warm Kale Salad

    What do you do with a burgeoning bounty of backyard kale as autumn arrives? Of course, there are many wonderful ways to cook kale. But when you have a LOT of it, and it’s fresh and tender, kale salad is the best.

    While I love raw foods in the summer, when it gets cooler, they don’t provide the internal heat my body needs. So today’s kale salad uses a hot cider vinaigrette to wilt the kale slightly, and make the salad more warming.

    I prefer Tuscan kale (aka Lacinato kale) for salads—not just because it is abundant in...

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  • A Quality Life Community: Yogic Service for Cancer Survivors

    Yoga for Cancer Survivors at Sundance Resort

    October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. From now until December 31st, your Hugger Mugger purchases will benefit A Quality Life Community (QLC). Founded as a resource for cancer survivors and their families, QLC provides complementary support—including free yoga classes at six different Utah locations. The organization’s founder, Amy Conn, sent us the message below, sharing her experience as a cancer survivor and her inspiration to found this wonderful organization:

    by Amy Conn

    A Quality Life Community celebrates our cancer survivors every day, but in October we...

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  • Meatless Monday: Vegan Pesto

    The basil harvest is an annual marker for me. It means that the garden is winding down. There’s still a bounty of kale, tomatoes and herbs, but I’m turning toward preserving what’s left.

    For some reason, basil does really well in my yard. I pretty much always have enough to make three or four batches of pesto. And that’s saying a lot, because it takes a hefty amount of basil to make a single batch.

    But that’s okay. Pesto has such an intense, concentrated flavor that very little is needed in any recipe to make a lasting impression.

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  • Writing Yoga: Empty Mat, Empty Page

    Before I begin, the emptiness seems so vast, and my thoughts and actions seem so small, so insignificant, that they hardly seem worth pursuing.

    Where should I begin? With cat and dog tilts? Mountain pose? Forward bends?

    And what should I write? Can I describe the discomfort? The emptiness? The insignificance of these actions?

    Amazingly, though, once I step on the mat or open my journal, these fears evaporate, and the emptiness disappears, too, no longer a vast vacuum waiting to swallow me up.

    Instead, I find myself excited by the prospect of discovering something new...

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  • Celebrate Pumpkin Seeds!

    Which came first: the pumpkin or the pumpkin seed?

    It’s one of those great mysteries we may never be able to answer. What we do know is that in terms of receiving national honors, National Pumpkin Seed Day (today) precedes National Pumpkin Day, which we’ll celebrate every year on October 26th.

    We also know that pumpkins and their seeds have been around a long time. Native to the Americas, the oldest evidence of pumpkin-related seeds were found in Mexico, and date back to somewhere between 7000 and 5500 BCE.
    Eat Your Pumpkin Seeds!
    In addition, we know that...

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  • Meatless Monday: Preserved Lemon

    One of the delights of attending retreats is the opportunity to taste new, healthy food at every meal. While I love to cook, I also enjoy being surprised. Last summer my favorite new ingredient that appeared in all sorts of main and side dishes was a traditional North African condiment: preserved lemon.

    Preserved lemons are simple to make. The main challenge is to remain patient. Like most pickled condiments, they take a while to mature. You can buy lemons already preserved at Middle Eastern grocery stores or online, but they’re usually not organic. While I was initially anxious to...

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  • Zafu and Zabuton: The Meditation Combination

    How you support your body in sitting meditation can make all the difference between feeling agitated and edgy or feeling calm and relaxed. The traditional combination of Zafu and Zabuton is the most popular, time-tested support for sitting practice.

    Sitting on a Zafu gives your hips extra height, allowing your pelvis to tilt forward and your spine to maintain its natural curves. When your spine is in its natural curves, it supports itself. There’s then no need to use muscular energy to sit up straight. When you have to exert a lot of effort just to maintain your posture...

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  • Tapas Travel Mat: Take Your Practice Anywhere

    Last summer, we published a blog on yoga practice for road trips. When you drive, you can easily pack your essentials without having to focus too much on bulk and weight. Air travel is a whole different animal.

    With ever-increasing baggage restrictions we need to be judicious about what we decide to take with us and what we have to leave behind. Bulky items take up precious space in our roller bags. All too often, our yoga mat has to stay at home.

    Back in the ’90s, some traveling yogis requested that we design a packable yoga mat...

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