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Journey Pages, The Hugger Mugger Yoga Blog

Advanced Yoga — with Yoga Props

posted by Charlotte Bell on November 18, 2014 |

yoga propsHow Using Yoga Props Deepens Practice Early last week, yoga made it into The Wall Street Journal. The article, titled “In Yoga, Blocks and Straps Get More Respect,” plugs yoga props as a way for anyone, including experienced practitioners, to deepen their practice while maintaining integrity. While acknowledging the mainstream misconception that many yogis see props as “crutches” to use until you can do the poses without them, the author

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Supta Baddhakonasana: Rest and Digest

posted by Charlotte Bell on November 10, 2014 |

supta baddhakonasanaSupta Baddhakonasana:  Rest and Digest As daylight hours wane, all living things naturally turn inward. Autumn is the time of inward and downward flow. In autumn, we hunker down, settle into our roots, and let go of what is no longer needed. As trees release of their leaves and plants turn brown and brittle, we also let go of the high-energy vibrancy of the sun’s radiance, in favor of the

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Urdhva Mukha Prasarita Padottanasana

posted by Charlotte Bell on November 6, 2014 |

urdhva mukha prasarita padottanasanaUrdhva Mukha Prasarita Padottanasana: Hugging the Earth I’d like to propose an inevitability to accompany death and taxes: gravity. In fact it’s arguable that gravity is more consistently inevitable than taxes, because there are ways to get around paying taxes if you can afford it. None of us escapes gravity. Gravity is responsible for keeping us from floating off the surface of the Earth. It is also responsible Earth’s orbit

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Yoga Strap: Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana

posted by Charlotte Bell on November 3, 2014 |

yoga propsUsing a Yoga Strap in Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana (UHP) is one of a class of poses my students call “flying poses.” Flying poses are the ones that feel as if they’re expanding your body to its outer reaches. When you’re practicing UHP, or any of the other flying poses, you may even feel that your body is on the barest edge of spontaneously taking flight. It feels

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Another Way of Looking at Body Positive Yoga

posted by Charlotte Bell on October 28, 2014 |

body positive yogaBody Positive Yoga – Why Yoga Really is All About the Body “It is through the body that everything comes to the mind. It is through and with your body that you have to reach realization of being a spark of divinity. How can we neglect the temple of the spirit?” — B.K.S. Iyengar (Sparks of Divinity, Rodmell Press) When I first read this quote years ago I interpreted this

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Using a Yoga Block: Trikonasana

posted by Charlotte Bell on October 21, 2014 |

yoga blocksUsing a Yoga Block in Trikonasana If you look at the shape of Trikonasana (Triangle Pose) it’s easy to see that a whole lot of what feels great about it is its expansion and openness. But sometimes when we reach what we think is our “fullest expression” of Triangle, we find it becomes hard to breathe freely, or we may feel collapsed or contracted, especially in the front of the

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Hanumanasana: Take a Flying Leap

posted by Charlotte Bell on October 14, 2014 |

hanumanasanaHanumanasana: Take a Flying Leap A while back, I recounted the story of Anjaneya, a child prodigy—part monkey, godson of the wind god Vayu, and reincarnation of Shiva—that got himself into trouble for making a giant leap for the sun without the sun god’s permission. Long story short, Anjaneya was not only absolved of his crime, after some wrangling with the sun god, but even elevated to god status. Dubbed

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Body-Positive Yoga: The Aging Yoga Body

posted by Charlotte Bell on October 1, 2014 |

Body-positive yoga is gaining ground. As we start to welcome all shapes, sizes, races and genders, here's a plug for celebrating our aging bodies too.

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How Yoga Can Change your Habits

posted by Charlotte Bell on September 24, 2014 |

change your habitsHow Yoga Can Change Your Habits When I first began practicing asana back in 1982, my intention was to regain my natural flexibility. Years of hiking, biking and not stretching had tightened me up, and I felt a need to balance my strength. I’d always been curious about the mental dimension of yoga, even though I had no idea what it was. So I found a hatha yoga class and

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The Mixed-Level Class Conundrum

posted by Charlotte Bell on September 16, 2014 |

mixed-level classHow to Keep Everyone Safe and Happy in a Mixed-Level Class (Hint: There’s no easy answer.) Last weekend began the first segment of a teacher training I’ve been coteaching for the past three years. It’s always fun to meet the new trainees and to hear inspiring stories about how Yoga practice has changed their lives. During the last class of the weekend, we asked them to share with us what

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