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The Hugger Mugger Yoga Blog

  • Shore Up Your Bridge Pose with a Yoga Block

    Restorative Bridge Pose with a Yoga Block

    Setubandhasana (Bridge Pose) is an all-around beneficial pose for counteracting the most prevalent poses we practice in our daily lives. You know the ones: hunching over a desk or a steering wheel, slouching in comfy chairs.

    Most of what we do every day involves flexing our hip joints and leaning forward, which shortens the front body and weakens the back body. When practiced actively, Bridge Pose is an acc…continue reading

  • How Do You Find a Yoga Mentor?

    What is a Yoga Mentor?

    A few weeks ago I got to revisit the retreat center that became my spiritual home in 1986. I don’t remember how many retreats I’ve attended there, but I do remember there were some 10-day, a 21-day and four 30-day silent retreats. In addition I’ve sat a five-day and at least three seven-day retreats. I’ve also spent up to a dozen weekends there in retreat.

    You’ve probably never heard of the place. It’s called The …continue reading

  • Meatless Monday: Waffles for Dinner

    Meatless Monday: Savory Corn Waffles with Salsa, Guacamole and Feta

    The unseasonably warm fall has been a boon to my tomato patch. Most years, tomatoes stop ripening toward the end of September. This year, with daytime temps in the 80s, my tomatoes are still ripening. This means that they’re still wonderful raw.

    Yesterday I decided to make fresh salsa and fresh guacamole with my fresh tomatoes. I wanted the salsa and guacamole to be part of a din…continue reading

  • Yoga Blocks 3 Ways

    3 Great Ways to Use Yoga Blocks

    Yoga Blocks are one of the most essential tools in yoga practice. They give support, keep our joints aligned and allow us to breathe freely. Yoga Blocks were originally developed by B.K.S. Iyengar, who was well known for his insistence on alignment integrity. The three dimensions of standard-sized Yoga Blocks (4" x 6" x 9") were determined by Mr. Iyengar to offer the best choices for stability and versatility.

    Hugger…continue reading

  • Meatless Monday: Quinoa Salad with Zucchini and Herbs

    Meatless Monday: Protein-Rich Quinoa Salad

    Food always tastes better when you’re paying attention. Such was the case when I was on a silent mindfulness meditation retreat a couple weeks ago. The dinners at The Last Resort retreat center are stellar. They’re cooked with joy and served with love by Abhilasha Keays, whose culinary talents just keep blossoming.

    One of the new recipes that Abhilasha shared on the recent retreat is a quinoa salad wit…continue reading

  • How to Choose the Best Yoga Blocks

    Bamboo Yoga Block (top), Recycled Foam Yoga Block (left), 4-Inch Foam Yoga Block (right)
    Choose the Yoga Blocks that Fit Your Yoga Practice

    The first time I used Yoga Blocks 30-some years ago I can’t say I loved the experience. The blocks were very heavy—solid pine—and had sharp edges that dug into my skin. They were also very slippery. The chances of dropping them on toes—and causing significant damage—were high. Plus my ego resisted us…continue reading

  • Meatless Monday: Piquant Panzanella

    Meatless Monday: Be Creative with Panzanella Salad

    For several summers in a row, I’ve attended meditation retreats at Spirit Rock Meditation Center. It is always a joy—a “coming home”—for me to be able to sit, walk and be in silence for a week or two. In addition to the joy of practice, I seem to have lucked out on practicing in places where the meals are stellar. I often come home from retreats at both The Last Resort and Spirit Rock wi…continue reading

  • Just Sitting

    Just Sitting

    Our lives are so busy, so rushed. Sometimes it’s hard to find a moment to sit still.

    It’s one of the reasons that I love yoga. The moment I unroll my mat and sit down, the strains of my day seem to melt away. (Writing in my journal provides the same sanctuary from the daily rush of life.)

    But sometimes just sitting isn’t easy.

    Even though I’ve set my foundation and closed my eyes, my thoughts may keep racing, speeding ahead to wh…continue reading

  • Meatless Monday: Best Fresh Tomato and Ravioli Salad Ever

    Meatless Monday: Ravioli and Tomato Salad with Masses of Basil

    After a week away from my tomato garden—on a seven-day silent Insight Meditation retreat—I’m back to feverishly harvesting my back yard abundance. I did a major harvest before I left, so that the retreat center’s fabulous cook could add garden-fresh tomatoes and herbs to her creations. It was fun seeing my tomatoes, basil, mint and Italian parsley show up in meals throughout th…continue reading

  • Yoga Strap: Open Your Shoulders in Gomukhasana

    Use a Yoga Strap for a Great Shoulder Opening

    Gomukhasana (Cow Face Pose) is a staple in my morning yoga classes. Years ago, several of my students made up unflattering names for it—Cow Pie, Mad Cow, etc.—because it was so challenging for them. Now those same Cow Face naysayers have turned into Cow Face converts, even sometimes giving up a bit of their Savasana to do it if I don’t offer it in class.

    Gomukhasana is quite complex. It’s classi…continue reading

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