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The Hugger Mugger Yoga Blog

  • Why Listening to Your Body Might Not Be Enough

    Listening to Your Body is Important, But So is An Experienced Teacher
    If you practice yoga, you’ve probably heard the entreaty, “Listen to your body.” It’s good, sound advice.

    When you embark on any physical practice, it’s important to know and respect your body’s limits. Those limits can change over time, of course, but tuning in and listening to your body and what it’s trying to communicate to you each time you practice is essential not only to your body’s health, but to the growth of your practice. How else can you really know the effects of an asana?

    As teachers, we can’t...

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  • Meatless Monday: Anna Thomas’s Green Soup

    Meatless Monday: Eat Your Greens!
    Dark, leafy greens are some of the most nutrient-packed foods around. The more you can integrate them into your diet, the better. Here’s an easy recipe that includes a huge amount of greens. Like all soups, the flavors will mellow over time, so make a big batch and enjoy it over a few days.

    Anna Thomas is the author of four cookbooks, including the original Vegetarian Epicure, one of the first gourmet vegetarian books published, back in the 1972. She knows her stuff. As with last week’s vegan chili recipe, feel free to use this recipe as...

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  • InBody Outreach - Yoga for Everybody

    InBody Outreach Provides Yoga for the Community
    “Yoga is for everybody” is not only a generous thought, but a reality many of us try to integrate in to our yoga classes. Many teachers are happy to welcome students of all sizes, ages and flexibility levels to our classes. But what about those who don’t have the means to attend a community class? What about seniors, people in treatment or in lockdown? Sometimes the people with the least access to the vitality and equanimity that yoga can bring are the ones that need it most.

    InBody Outreach shares on-site yoga practice with often-overlooked...

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  • Meatless Monday: Vegan Chili, a Hearty Exploration

    Meatless Monday: Veggie Chili
    Winter is a great time to enjoy hot, hearty foods. A steaming bowl of chili warms you from the inside out.

    The fun thing about chili is that you can play a lot with the recipe. For example, I’ve added things like a few tablespoons of peanut butter; frozen, and then sauteed tofu; sautéed tempeh; a few tablespoons of various sweeteners; extra beans for extra protein; my own frozen, roasted garden tomatoes. You can add diced carrots, potatoes, pasta, quinoa, or whatever else you can think of to add nutrients, texture and flavor.

    The recipe below is my favorite...

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  • Teaching Yoga: It’s a Two-Way Street

    Teaching Yoga is All About Listening
    “Listen to your body” has become a widely disseminated instruction in the yoga world. It’s an important one, a skill that reaches out into life off the mat. But when we tell students to listen to their bodies, we teachers need to remember to listen to our students too. When we listen we create an environment where students feel respected and safe, and we also might learn something in the process.

    About 25 years ago I attended a workshop with a well-known yoga teacher. We were working up to Urdva Dhanurasana (Upward Bow), stretching our quads...

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  • Meatless Monday Recipe: Carrot Soup with Onion Relish

    Meatless Monday Recipe
    Meatless Monday has become de rigueur in many restaurants around the country. In honor of this new tradition, we’re going to feature a favorite meatless recipe each Monday. This week’s Meatless Monday recipe is a tasty carrot soup that’s good on its own, but great with a zesty onion relish. This recipe is vegan (when you use olive oil instead of butter) and gluten free.
    Carrot Soup with Onion Relish
    from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison

    2 Tbs butter, olive oil, or a mixture
    1 onion, thinly sliced
    1 pound carrots, thinly sliced
    1 bay leaf
    2 Tbs chopped parsley
    3 Tbs white rice
    1...

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  • Healthy Yoga Practice - Don’t Stretch Your Joints!

    Some Ligaments of the Hip Joint

    Healthy Yoga Practice:  Don’t Stretch Your Joints!
    For the past few years, I've been on the faculty of the teacher training program at Avenues Yoga Studio in Salt Lake City. Early in the 2013 training, one student who had been teaching in a fitness studio asked a very important question. She explained that one of her female students became unusually flexible prior to ovulation, probably because of the presence of “relaxin,” a hormone that relaxes the ligaments that hold together the various joints in the pelvis—hip joints, sacroiliac joints and pubic symphisis...

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  • How to Practice Ahimsa on the Mat

    Most who practice yoga these days have at least heard of the word ahimsa. We might even have read some of the in-depth literature on it, or practiced incorporating the idea of ahimsa—non-harming—into our lives. Translated as “dynamic peacefulness” by Alistair Shearer, it is arguable that ahimsa is the foundation of the entire practice.

    Ahimsa is the first of the yamas, the first of yoga’s Eight Limbs. In the yoga tradition, the yamas, along with the niyamas (skillful living practices) were introduced to children and practiced before learning asana or pranayama, or the meditative limbs. Coming from a foundation of non-harming...

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  • Get Back to Your Root Vegetables

    Eat Root Vegetables to Take Off the Chill
    In the Northern Hemisphere, January is cold as it gets. If you are like me, you may not have felt truly warm for a very long time. Despite the layers I wear inside my drafty, old house, there’s always a chilly edge that just doesn’t abate—until I remember how to heat myself from the inside.
    Rev Up
    Vigorous movement can help take off the chill. Outdoor activities such as snowshoeing and cross-country skiing will have you peeling off layers. If you live in Utah, these activities have the added advantage of exposing you to blue...

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  • Talasana: Sway Like a Palm Tree

    January signifies new beginnings, a fresh, new, canvas on which to paint our intentions. The new year often inspires a commitment to living a healthier lifestyle, including caring for our bodies, stimulating our minds and seeking new, revitalizing experiences, or experimenting with balancing what we already do with practices that complement our lives.

    The key is patience. Changes, big or small, take time. It takes time to form new habits. While you may feel the urge to jump into your new regimen with both feet, sometimes it’s wise to start by dipping a few toes in first.

    If you’re thinking about starting—or...

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