WHAT IS YOGA?
Yoga is the connection of the body, mind and breath through a series of guided poses and sequences. The word Yoga comes from the Sanskrit language and it means to unite, or to yoke. The physical practice of yoga encourages increased body awareness while also improving strength, flexibility and balance. There are many types of yoga, each with different focuses and benefits, however most revolve around the central idea of connecting the body, mind and breath.
WHY SHOULD I DO YOGA?
Why shouldn’t you do yoga?! Yoga is a unique form of exercise with many benefits to the body and mind. Yoga increases flexibility and muscle strength while decreasing anxiety, stress, and the risk for injury. It’s an integral addition to any exercise program because of its unique ability to offer cardiovascular benefits, maintain or lose weight, and detoxify the body while being approachable to any and all body types and ages. Yoga has been practiced for thousands of years all over the world and it continues to gain popularity today. And since there are so many different styles to choose from, it never gets old!
I’M NOT FLEXIBLE. CAN I DO YOGA?
Absolutely! In fact, you are the perfect candidate for yoga. Give it a try and over time you will notice that yoga helps you to become more flexible. Everybody is different, so never feel the need to practice poses exactly like the teachers: they are only there as a guide, and their own personal experiences with yoga are different from yours or anyone else’s. Listen to your body, don’t force yourself, and stay within your limits. Also, like any other exercise program, please consult your doctor before beginning to practice yoga.
WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ON DEMAND CLASSES AND LIVE CLASSES?
Yoga on demand is an extensive library of pre-recorded yoga videos that can be accessed anytime that fits your schedule. I’ve designed, filmed, edited, and curated all of these classes for a well-rounded at home yoga practice. You can use the videos according to your convenience and energy level. Live classes are offered 5 days a week and can be taken from the comfort of your own home, or anywhere you are! Begin or grow your home practice with a more interactive experience and a wonderful, fun community. Make new friends, tell jokes, and talk about life! Prior to class, you will have the opportunity to ask for tips on modifications or for a specific stretch. Regardless of the format you choose, my classes will guide you through intelligent, effective sequences designed with an increased awareness of anatomy, structure, and how the body functions. You’ll get more flexible, stronger, build lean muscle, improve your cardio conditioning, and deepen the mind-body connection.
WHAT DOES ‘ASANA’ MEAN ?
Asana is the term used to describe any pose that’s practiced in yoga. There are many different asanas, ranging from simple, relaxing poses which can be held by yogis at all levels of ability, to complex poses which push the body to its limits. The word asana is Sanskrit for “comfortable seat”. The idea behind this is that in every yoga posture or asana, we ideally want to find peace or a sense of calm, even when it is physically challenging. This takes practice, but don’t let it discourage you! Most yoga classes and practices are composed of a few different sequences of asanas. It is said that there are thousands of asanas across all the different styles of yoga!
WHAT IS ‘VINYASA’ YOGA ?
Vinyasa is the movement between poses in yoga, typically accompanied by mindful breathing. A practice moving through a series of asanas can be referred to as Vinyasa or Vinyasa flow. The sanskrit definition of Vinyasa is roughly translated as “to place in a purposeful way,” meaning the sequence of movements are placed together for a seamless flow. The movements, coordinated with the breath, bring the body and mind in sync.
WHAT IS HIIT AND WHY SHOULD I TRY IT?
HIIT or High Intensity Interval Training is physical training that combines periods of intense exercise that increases your heart rate quickly with short bouts of rest in between sequences. HIIT burns calories quickly during class AND for a few hours after. It increases metabolism and tones the entire body. All of my HIIT programming is written by me and is original; the workouts change each week and you won’t see the same one twice! Variety is key to an effective and fun workout. The exercises that you’ll see in classes are a blend of full body functional movements, gymnastic core training, plyometric moves, and bodyweight strengthening techniques. My HIIT classes do not require any equipment besides a smile on your face. If you aren’t smiling before the class, you will be by the time it ends!
WHAT IS SLOW FLOW YOGA?
Slow Flow is a good way to take it down a notch and unwind from your week. We flow through calming asanas in slower paced sequences to balance the yin and yang energies, calm the nervous system, relieve stress, and reduce tension.
HOW DO I BOOK A LIVE ONLINE CLASS?
HOW DO I SUBSCRIBE TO A VIDEO LIBRARY?
I’M INTIMIDATED BY LIVE ONLINE CLASSES. WHAT ARE THEY LIKE?
Please don’t be intimidated! My main goal in these classes is your comfort and happiness. I work hard to create and maintain a family-like energy that is welcoming and non-judgmental. Our community is full of genuinely kind and compassionate folks, each with their own stories of what brought them to yoga. We would really love to have you! When you sign up for a live online class with me, you will be sent a Zoom link via email. All you need to do to join class is click the link. Prior to class beginning, we greet each other and you’ll have time to ask any questions that you may have. When class starts, you can decide to leave your video on or turn it off so others won’t see you. You will also be muted. The end of class is left open-ended so you can leave or stay and chat a while.
WHAT DO I NEED TO PRACTICE YOGA?
Wear loose fitting, comfortable clothing, kick off your shoes and practice on a surface with some grip. Yoga mats are ideal, as they have a grippy texture which helps prevent sliding. Some yoga practitioners prefer to have props such as yoga blocks or a rolled up towel to help with getting deeper into poses, or to preserve alignment. If you choose to use them, keep them near your practicing space so you can grab them during class.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I PRACTICE YOGA?
Consistency is key. Some people prefer to take 2-3 one hour long classes per week and some thrive on 10-15 minutes every day. As you get stronger and more comfortable with the physical aspects of your practice, you may find that you want to practice for longer, or add more classes to your schedule. I offer scheduled live Zoom classes as well as a video library that you can access any time, day or night. Just find a time that works for you and schedule your classes so you don’t forget. Also, remember to give yourself some leeway about your routine. Aim for a consistent practice, but don’t beat yourself up if you have trouble sticking to it in the beginning. Be patient with yourself. Yoga will always be here for you, and the point of practicing is to feel better, not worse!
DO I HAVE TO GET IN SHAPE BEFORE I START YOGA?
Absolutely not! Yoga is a wonderful way to get into shape while listening to your own body and learning your own boundaries. Yoga is available to ANYONE regardless of fitness level, age, weight, gender, or race. We all come to the mat with different bodies, but the benefits of yoga are universal.
HOW WILL I KNOW IF I AM OVERDOING IT?
Once you start a regular yoga practice, it can be very tempting to push yourself beyond your limits. Overtraining in any form of exercise can lead to injuries, fatigue, and a much longer recovery time. Listen to your body. If your joints are achy or your muscles and bones are sore, it is time to take a break. Some soreness is normal and will occur in everyone, but you shouldn’t be in pain. Recovery is just as important as physical exercise when you’re trying to improve your fitness level. Remember that at the end of the day, yoga is about caring for yourself. Treat your body well and respect it, and it will do the same for you!
WHAT IF I CAN’T TOUCH MY TOES?
A very common misconception is that you should be flexible before ever setting foot on a mat. That’s like saying you have to get in shape before you join a gym – it doesn’t make sense! Yoga is perfect for the inflexible person, and folding like a panini is not a prerequisite. The whole point of practicing yoga is to address this very issue. By practicing regularly, you’ll gain flexibility. You will be touching your toes before you know it. I never pressure my students to get to a certain depth or point in a pose, and I always offer modifications for the poses we do in class, so that you can be safe, have fun, and not get hurt.
DO I NEED TO KNOW YOGA TERMS TO TAKE CLASS?
Nope! Knowing the pose names will come naturally over time. In my classes, I guide you step by step through each pose, with lots of verbal cues to make sure you’re safe and that you understand. I also demonstrate so that you can see a visual representation so that there isn’t any confusion. Don’t let terminology be the reason you are apprehensive towards yoga! Maybe you tried a class or video in the past and the teacher cued asanas (poses) by using the Sanskrit title, or maybe he or she used the English translation but didn’t explain how to get into the pose. I promise I won’t do that to you! My goal is to make yoga approachable and enjoyable for everyone.
CAN I LOSE WEIGHT DOING YOGA?
Increasing physical activity is helpful and in most cases necessary if you want to lose weight. Regular yoga practice is a great thing to incorporate into your weight loss plans. Yoga helps to burn calories and increase the heart rate while also building muscle, which leads to even more calorie burn even after your workout. In the vast majority of my classes, your muscles are working the entire time. My teaching style focuses on engaging muscle groups while stretching – this creates more mobility and more strength at the same time. If you take my classes you will improve your balance, stability, muscle tone, endurance, and more. Yoga is unique because not only does it help burn calories, but also teaches you to be more in touch with your body on and off the mat.
DO I HAVE TO BE A VEGETARIAN TO PRACTICE YOGA?
You do not need to have any specific belief system to be a yogi. One of the biggest benefits of yoga is getting to know yourself better, and trusting yourself to make the best personal decisions for you. There are many reasons people choose how and whether or not to eat meat; the yoga tradition is just one of them. Hindu belief emphasizes non-violence (“Ahimsa” in Sanskrit), and this belief applies to all living things. This may be why you’ve heard all yogis are vegetarians, but that is not true. The most important thing is that you are taking care of yourself and valuing your own health and well-being.
WHO IS CLAUDE?
Claude..The Squirrel, The Myth, The Legend Claude is my incredibly sweet and very special little squirrel! I rescued him on March 26th, 2020 at 6 weeks old. He had been orphaned by a neighbor’s dog, and as he had begun to starve, he had fallen from his nest to seek food. Wildlife rehab centers were closed due to Covid, so I took him home to nurse him back to health. I had no idea what a huge role he would play in my life! This tiny baby changed everything for me. I immediately fell in love with Claude and spent almost all of my time outside of work caring for and spending time with him. Baby squirrels are joyful, smart, picky, fragile, and loving. It was a tremendous amount of work and LOVE to raise him up into a big strong boy. Claude also became a regular performer during my online yoga classes; he could be seen scampering around and climbing on me the whole time I taught class. A little yogi squirrel! He definitely earned his seat as the official mascot of our yoga community. By mid-summer, he had grown strong, smart and confident, and his instincts were developed enough for him to go off to squirrel college. I wanted nothing more than to keep him close to me forever, but I knew that little wild animals deserve freedom, and I wanted Claude to be a happy little squirrel. The whole point of rescuing this baby was to give him as good of a chance at a happy life as I could. So I let him go and find his squirrel life! As soon as Claude was released into his wild surroundings, I began visiting his new neighborhood daily. I installed squirrel feeding and water stations so that Claude and his squirrel friends can have healthy yummy treats at their disposal anytime they want. Claude and I still spend time together almost every day, when I go to visit. He comes to eat snacks from my hand, and I enjoy watching him do all his squirrel activities. If you ever have the opportunity to befriend a squirrel, I highly recommend it! They are curious, highly intelligent, and playful little friends. And there is simply nothing like having a squirrel love and trust you. You can follow Claude on Instagram and learn more about him at @claudethesquirrel.
AM I TOO OLD TO DO YOGA?
You’re never too old to start practicing yoga. There is no age requirement, and everyone can benefit from it! Studies have shown that practicing yoga regularly can strengthen bones, lower blood pressure, improve balance, and reduce anxiety. Yoga at any age comes with countless benefits.
DO I HAVE TO WEAR YOGA PANTS OR TIGHT CLOTHES?
Wear whatever makes you comfortable! What you wear to yoga class is your personal choice. Some people wear tight leggings but there is no set yoga dress code. If you can access a full range of motion, what you’re wearing is perfect!
DO I HAVE TO KNOW HOW TO MEDITATE TO DO YOGA?
Some yoga classes and styles include a meditation practice and some do not. You don’t have to be a seasoned meditator to practice yoga. In certain classes, I may lead us collectively through short meditations, but this will be a guided experience. In every class, we end with “Savasana”, or corpse pose. This is a great time to explore relaxation with attention & intention, and may serve as your first step into meditation.
WHEN SHOULD I PRACTICE YOGA?
This is entirely up to you, however it’s wise to avoid eating 2-3 hours beforehand. You will be twisting, bending and sometimes turning upside down – things that are not very comfortable with a full tummy. Some people enjoy early morning sessions to start their day, yoga before lunch to beat the afternoon slump, or a relaxing class just before bed. It is recommended to practice yoga as consistently as possible.
WHAT IF I WANT TO CANCEL MY LIVE CLASS SUBSCRIPTION?
Sometimes life takes over and you need to take a break from regularly scheduled live classes. If you want to cancel your subscription, just [************* what do they do ************]