Integrated Movement: Combining Clinical Somatics and Yoga

One of the questions that students ask me most often is whether or not they should continue their yoga practice while doing Clinical Somatics exercises, and if so, how to go about combining the two practices. I love yoga, and I

Trikonasana, Part 3: Foot Arch Mastery

William Blake said that you can see the world in a grain of sand. Similarly, the fundamental principles you master in one asana are portable to others. With this in mind, let’s look at the key elements for activating your

Uncomfortable in Yoga’s Child’s Pose? Try These Variations

A teacher training graduate writes: When I teach Child’s Pose, I have noticed that some of my students keep their back straight and hips hiked up in the air, almost Downward Facing Dog-like. I’m not sure if this is a

Experience Yoga Here and Now: The Lunacy of Trying to Be Better

When I first heard my teacher talk about “the lunacy of trying to be better,” I was not convinced. Of course, we try to be better, don’t we? If we weren’t trying to be better, then we wouldn’t come to

Yoga for Runners: 4 Tips for Safe and Effective Yoga Practice

Yoga can either be a runner’s best friend or worst enemy, depending on how they approach the practice. When yoga is done safely, mindfully, and effectively, it can offer a variety of benefits to runners. However, without proper guidance, yoga

Shed Those Shoes: Being Barefoot Benefits Brain Development and More

It drove my mother crazy when I went barefoot as a kid. Still does, because I’m in stocking feet in the fall and winter and barefoot the rest of the time! I can’t stand the confinement of shoes. And I’ve

Overcoming Family Rejection: How to Find Strength in Pain

“I don’t like being too looked up at or too looked down on. I prefer meeting in the middle to being worshipped or spat out.” ~ Joni Mitchell Growing up, there were two sides of the kitchen table. On side

Sinus Ease: A Soothing Yoga Sequence for Cold Season

Well, it has started again—with the arrival of winter, my yoga students are sneezing, sniffling, and coughing in class. It’s a clear reminder that we are solidly in the cold, flu and sinus infection season. Can yoga help with this?

Plantar Fasciitis: 6 Ways Yoga Can Bring Relief

The sharp and painful sensations felt at the heel of the foot are the telltale sign of plantar fasciitis. At least three million people in the U.S. alone suffer from this condition. In very simple terms, plantar fasciitis is inflammation

Your Body Clock: Are You in Sync?

Many years ago I had a student who was blind. He came to my afternoon yoga classes regularly and sometimes we got to talking about this and that. One time he mentioned that yoga helped him to keep a very

Embodied Yoga Practice: Returning Home to Your Body

There are many ways in which an embodied practice returns us to ourselves. Whether it is feeling the pulsation of the heart or the passing of the breath, each allows us to recognize where we are right now. Recently I’ve

Yoga Focus and the Wandering Mind

What does it mean to be in a state of yoga? With so much attention given to yoga’s postures, it’s easy to lose sight that yoga is ultimately about the quality and action of our focus, rather than our ability to

Yoga Anatomy 101: Stop Relaxing Your Glutes in Backbends

One cue that has gotten a lot of publicity and perpetuation throughout the yoga world is “relax your glutes” while practicing backbends. While the intention behind this well-meaning cue is noble, the results can actually be the opposite of their

Trikonasana Part 2: Your Sacroiliac Joint

In this post, we will explore Trikonasana (Triangle Pose) with a cue that connects the forward leg psoas with the back leg glutes, thus stabilizing your pelvis. First, take a quick look at the cue from my previous post on co-contracting the

Sensory Motor Amnesia: How Muscle Memory Reinforces Habits—Both Good and Bad

Most people are familiar with the concept of muscle memory. When we repeat a movement, such as swinging a golf club, over and over, the neurons involved in controlling that movement develop increasingly stronger connections. Existing synapses begin to fire more