By Ellen S. Gibson
I have come to the borders of sleep,–Edward Thomas (1878-1918) from his poem, “Lights Out”
The unfathomable deep
Forest where all must lose
Their way, however straight,
Or winding, soon or late;
They cannot choose.
My mother died at the end of December. It was not completely unexpected. She was 93 years of age. She lived a long life, a good life, but had been in declining health for some time.
Continue reading Yoga and Grief →
By Ellen S. Gibson
Hope is a thing with feathers-Emily Dickinson
That perches in the soul,
And sings the song without the words
And never stops at all.
Each day I come to the mat, there is the expectation that I will feel better for having practiced yoga. It could be ten uninterrupted minutes or a 45-minute class via Zoom. The amount of time matters less than showing up. Physically, my back may be stiff from too much shoveling. Emotionally, I may be feeling overwhelmed, tense, or anxious. No matter the starting point, when I leave the mat, I am stronger, calmer, and more balanced.
Continue reading Yoga and Hope →
A year ago, I shared a blog about a healthy and well-balanced movement diet. (See July 2018 – How’s your movement diet?) In that blog, I recommended ten movements or activities to consider incorporating into your daily movement diet to optimize your health and life enjoyment. #10 was the recommendation to do plank daily. I did add the caveat that plank may not be for everyone; however, today I am sharing several variations on the traditional high plank that help make it healthy and accessible for nearly everybody!
Continue reading Plankity Plank →
Try breathing like this: exhale … exhale … exhale … exhale again.
How did that go? I’m guessing that you were wondering what happened to the inhale? It is a simple fact that you cannot keep breathing out without breathing in and live to tell about it! Likewise, you cannot live well without balancing the care that you commit to others with the care that you give yourself. Yoga at its core is a self-care practice. As we experience greater balance, harmony, and joy in ourselves through these practices, we are better able to care for the world around us. A win-win for all. (Click here to learn more about yoga self-care practices.)
Continue reading Inhale exhale, In and Out, Give and Take →
Guest Writer: Sophia Maamouri
As we transition from summer to fall, we prepare ourselves for winter. The energy of the plant world is going into the roots. Foliage is drying and turning beautiful colors. Squirrels are busy stealing seeds from the bird feeders and hoarding food to their “storage units.” My goats are fluffing up with their new cashmere undercoat, and the chickens and ducks are molting. Bears are fattening up for hibernation.
Continue reading Transitioning to Winter with Ease →
We all know that our health benefits from moving and being active. Typically movement guidelines for health and fitness address frequency, duration, intensity, and mode. Click here to see the US Government Physical Activity Guidelines. This information is quite informative and offers the opportunity to customize your activities to your needs and interests.
Based on my experience and observations as a Physical Therapist, Yoga Therapist, and a human being living in a human body, I would like to recommend that everyone incorporate the following ten movement nutrients into their daily movement diet. (Please note that if you have a health concern, you should speak with your healthcare provider first.)
Continue reading How’s your movement diet? →
This winter, feed your fire for vigor and vitality.
During the coldest months of the year, it can be tempting to cozy up next to the fire and not venture out again until the weather warms. For many of us, our internal flame of motivation can begin to burn a bit low this a time of year. However, since hibernation is not a natural state for humans it is important that we feed our fire, so that come spring we don’t regret those hours of chillin’ the winter away. The yogic principle of Tapas supports us in cultivating the inner flame that motivates us.
Continue reading Don’t Hibernate, Invigorate! →
Understanding Karma Yoga and Dharma – and practicing these can help you, others, and the world live in a more peaceful and easeful manner.
With so many things happening around the world including natural disasters, global warming, terrorism, racism, and sexism, etc. it is only natural to wonder what you can do to help others who may be in a less fortunate situation than you or to help the earth itself. It can also be natural to doubt your ability, as one person, to make a difference. These questions and doubts are perfectly valid, and the reality is that there are a lot of different things that you can do and that each one of them will probably have little direct impact on these huge issues. However, mindful action – Karma Yoga – moves us toward right action – Dharma – and when we practice our Karma Yoga and follow our Dharma, then each small act begins to contribute to the universal good.
Continue reading Action, Mindful Action, Right Action →
A frequent question from new Yoga students and experienced ones is, “How often should I practice Yoga?” A great question and an interesting one.
Continue reading How often should I practice, It depends →