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The Hugger Mugger Yoga Blog

  • Shoulderstand - Save Your Neck with Yoga Blankets

    Shoulderstand on Yoga Blankets

    How Using Yoga Blankets in Shoulderstand Can Save Your Neck
    Looking to see the world from a new perspective? Going upside-down is one way to shift your point of view—literally.

    Inverted yoga poses are perfect for cultivating fertile creative ground in the body/mind. In addition to their many physical benefits, inversions are said to allow us to see with new eyes. When we turn upside down, the world looks different. The world hasn’t fundamentally changed of course; it is our relationship with it that has changed. This shift opens us to new perspectives, the foundation...

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  • Yoga Gifts For Every Body and Every Budget

    Yoga gifts for every body and every budget

     Our Guide to Choosing Perfect Yoga Gifts
    Looking for a gift for your favorite yogi? We’ve created gift guides with suggestions for beginners, teachers, men who practice yoga, meditators, yogis who travel, and those who love hot yoga. There’s even a guide with gifts that every yogi would love to receive.

    Here’s a handy guide to gifts by price.
    Gifts under $15
    Sometimes it’s the little things that make a big difference. A strap to bridge the gap when you can’t quite reach your toes. Grippy Toe Sox to keep you steady in poses...

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  • How to Choose the Best Yoga Mat for Your Practice

    So Many Choices

    How to Choose the Perfect Yoga Mat
    Before the late 1980s, there was no such thing as a yoga mat. The small but dedicated population who practiced yoga cobbled together an array of towels, blankets and foam pads for practice, but mostly we used whatever surface was available. Back then there were very few dedicated yoga studios. We practiced in church basements, YWCAs, gyms and school classrooms—where we had to move desks to clear a space. We practiced on linoleum, vinyl, concrete, wood, carpet—you name it.

    It was rustic, to say the least. So when Angela...

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  • Advanced Yoga — with Yoga Props

    How Using Yoga Props Deepens Practice
    Not too long ago, 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 debunks the notion by giving examples of ways experienced yogis use them move more deeply into practice.

    To this, I say, “Amen.”

    Some of my students have been attending my classes since...

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  • Yoga Poetry - Almost Gone

    Yoga Poetry
    Almost Gone
    The sun calls one last word in its rusting voice,

    then leans to the west, sweetening its tune

    by forgetting the melody. The taste of light

    lingers in the sudden cooling of breath,

    the slim branch of a twisted tree over the horizon

    where one crow waits for the shadows

    the moon will throw over the brome field

    two turns of the wheel back in time.

     

    The stand of cedars wakes with a start.

    The dry ground loosens its new cracks

    and tilts rocks for the snakes to emerge.

    The wind moves on, nothing to see here,

    while the dark in the dark quiets its old hands.

     

    What’s gone seems like...

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  • How Aligning the Chakras and Yoga Can Change Your Practice and Your Life

    Anodea Judith on the Relationship Between Chakras and Yoga Practice
    Since first learning about the chakras in the 1970s, Anodea Judith has made teaching them her life’s work. Her first book Wheels of Life (1987, revised 1999: Llewellyn Worldwide) has sold more than 250,000 copies and been translated into 15 languages, with a number of best-selling books to follow. She calls them portals between the inner and outer worlds that provide a template for transformation and a map to manifest the lives we want to live. Jodi Mardesich recently spoke with her via Skype.

    How did you come in to this line of work?

    I came in through...

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  • Supta Baddhakonasana: Rest and Digest

    Pushkin Instructing Supta Baddhakonasana

    Supta 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 muted light of its more oblique rays. Consciously or subconsciously, we often mourn the seeming loss of summer’s vitality. But it’s the time of letting...

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  • Urdhva Mukha Prasarita Padottanasana

    Urdhva 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 around the sun and the moon’s orbit around us. It is partly responsible for the tides. Yes, there are some who get to play around in anti-gravity environments, and there are yogis...

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  • Yoga Strap: Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana

    Using 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 fantastic.

    All too often though, in UHP we’re working so hard to grasp the foot with our hand that we end up contracting inward rather than expanding outward. If our hamstrings and...

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  • Another Way of Looking at Body Positive Yoga

    Body 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 way: It is through our practice of asana, at those times when we lose the struggle and become the asana, that we see into our true nature, the undefined spaciousness that connects...

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