Entries Tagged as 'Trainings and Workshops'

2.2.2013

Jivamukti Workshop: Transitions, Jumpbacks, Jump ups, & Jumping Through

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I attended my first Jivamukti Yoga workshop today with Jessica Stickler, 800 hour Advanced Certified Jivamukti Teacher.  Jessica teaches at Jivamukti Yoga School New York City. I completely enjoyed her energy and instruction.  The Art of Transitions workshop held  at Dana Hot Yoga focused on the “tricky, elusive, yet ubiquitous art of ‘jumpbacks’, ‘jump ups’ and jumping through.” teaching yoga practitioners techniques to refine and strengthen their jumps.  It challenged me, I learned a lot and it was loads of fun.  What I find amazing about so many asana based yoga workshops is that they always break you out of your comfort zone and you always learn something new.  They challenge your body physically and also challenge you so deeply in the mind.  Practicing breaking out of my comfort zone, focusing and pushing through challenges on my mat has definitely impacted how I am able to handle being outside my comfort zone and dealing with challenges off my mat in daily life.  It’s also influenced both my business and my personal life.

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In the workshop we covered the importance of bandhas along with the ujjayi breath and how they directly influence your jump backs, jump throughs and jump ups…especially mula bandha.  It was awesome that nearly everything we did was new to me. What’s incredible about yoga is that you are aways capable of growing and learning more. You never “master” yoga.  I was amazed by new methods to use blocks and how they affected and improved postures and sequences.  Remove the idea from your head that blocks only make postures easier. Have you tried chatarunga dandasana with two blocks?  Have you held downward facing dog squeezing a block between your thighs and have you jumped from downward facing down through your arms into tabletop? Have you stepped forward into a lunge from downward facing dog hovering your foot above the mat before gently placing it down?  (sigh, my arms are sore thinking about it) Do it….then call me and let me know whatcha think.  It is NOT easy.

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Jessica also went through techniques and exercises to strengthen arms, wrists and core to make jumping and transitions possible.  A key component to transitions is a strong core. Someone asked a question about body structure and how it plays a roll in what we’re capable of.  Jessica wisely noted that while a particular body structure may be a challenge in a particular posture or transition, it is not a limitation. Transitions are often challenging just as transitions in daily life, but with a strong foundation and mind we are capable of moving through these transitions. I am grateful for today’s experience and opportunity and look forward to incorporating these new transitions into my practice.

2.1.2013

Photo of the Day

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Jessica Stickler is an 800 hour Advanced Certified Jivamukti Teacher. She teaches full time at Jivamukti Yoga School in New York City.  I am super excited to attend my first Jivamukti yoga workshop with her tomorrow at Dana Hot Yoga.  The workshop is on The Art of Transitions, focusing on the “tricky, elusive, yet ubiquitous art of ‘jumpbacks’, ‘jump ups’ and jumping through.” Sounds challenging and super fun!

1.12.2013

Sequencology Methodology: The art of hands-on assisting at Pure Yoga NYC

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My favorite adjustments to receive are child’s pose, revolved crescent lunge, revolved triangle, revolved chair, pigeon, frog, downward facing dog, and savasana.

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I took the shortest trip ever to NYC yesterday to attend Sequencology Methodology, with Lori McAlister. The training at Pure Yoga East was a hands-on assisting and adjustments training. It was well worth the trip and I learned an exceptional amount.  Plus, it was a lot of fun.

What is hands-on adjustments or assisting your students and why do we do it?  It can be as simple as verbal cues to hands on adjustments to assist the student’s alignment, posture and enhance the practice.   For example, perhaps you can’t quite square your hips in revolved triangle. Your instructor will assist you in stacking your hips, and you’ll notice the difference and how much better you’re able to feel in this pose. When a student is ready physical assists may also be applied to move your body deeper into a pose and enhance a posture… plus they feel really good.

Proper adjustments and assisting requires training and practice.  Assisting requires learning how to use your hands in an appropriate way and confidently knowing how to adjust the body. When learning a new adjustment, it’s important to take trainings and practice with a yoga-friend who can give you feedback on things such as pressure, the placing of your hands on the body and how it feels. In hands-on trainings we learn how to apply to appropriate touch and how to to be professional and respectful. We generally place the palms of the hands rather than fingers and apply a firm confident touch. We may even ask the student permission in certain adjustments or let them know what we are doing as we adjust them. In order to assist it’s essential that the instructor goes in confidently on each assist as your energy directly transfers to your student.  If you are unsure or not confident with the assist, the student will feel this.  The instructor must establish a level of trust and respect with the students in order to perform certain adjustments.

A couple basic points I’ll include incase I want to reference them again later.

  • Body language is a big indicator of whether or not people will be receptive to an adjustment. Watch the student as you approach them and decide whether a verbal cue or physical assist is appropriate.  Learning to read your students is essential with adjustments.
  • New Students Allow let them see other students adjusted first. Start with verbal cues or a simple “feel good” adjustment like Child’s Pose until they become comfortable with your touch and you feel confident adjusting them.  Use a verbal as you are adjusting the new student.
  • Advanced Students Remember advanced students can seriously benefit from adjustments as can fellow teachers taking your class.  As a yoga instructor I seriously love adjustments, especially when I am in a posture where my alignment feels challenged or I feel I can go deeper.  Advanced students and yoga teachers usually love adjustments!
  • Breathe Match your breath (“inhale – lengthen”, “exhale – soften”) with your student as you adjust them.  Inhale…prepare, Exhale…apply the proper assist or adjustment.
  • Communicate with your student through eye contact or asking them how the pressure feels in deepening poses.
11.6.2012

49 days and counting… (now exactly 40 days!)

Aweeeee! I received this beautiful card from Kathy today.  Kathy’s coming with us on the Belize Yoga Adventure Renewal Retreat in exactly 40 days!

So excited to see everyone soon!

XO Keli

7.11.2012

Teaching Yoga at Teach For America

my yoga buddy Anni <3

Volunteering at Teach For America at Temple University with one of my best yoga buds Anni.  Yesterday was a blast, I love volunteer yoga teaching and the 2012 Corps Members seemed to really enjoy and appreciate the break in their intensive training. Congrats to the 2012 Corps Members!!

6.20.2012

Solstice in Times Square: Athleta Mind Over Madness Yoga

My tickets to Solstice in Times Square:  Athleta Mind Over Madness Yoga 

Forecast:  ”New York City, NY – Becoming hotter…”

Sunny Hi 94°RealFeel® 106°

It’s here!!  I’m on my way to New York City on Summer Solstice for Athleta’s Mind Over Madness Yoga in TIMES SQUARE celebration!  Today is the longest day of the year and to celebrate there will be  FREE OUTDOOR YOGA CLASSES from 7:30am to 8:30pm on the longest day of the year.

Check out the Full Schedule of EventsS and Live Streaming Video from TIMES SQUARE.  

I’m on the 8:00am bus from Philadelphia and arrive Port Authority NYC at 10:10am. The following are the classes I’ll be taking in Times Square.  SO EXCITED FOR MY DAY IN NYC!

12:30pm-2:00pm – Rajashree Choudhury (Bikram, all levels welcome)

Rajashree is a five-time winner of the All-India Yoga Championship. Her special focus has been on the emotional side of yoga and how yoga balances the energy of the human body and impacts not only disease, but also affects the body/mind/soul connection which constitutes vibrant health. She helped her husband (Bikram Choudhury) create the highly successful Teacher Training program after more than ten years of teaching yoga in

the United States. She also has founded the USA Yoga Federation, a non-profit organization formed to facilitate her goal of yoga ultimately being accepted as an Olympic Sport. Rajashree is also involved in many charitable endeavors. “As a child in Kolkata, I first practiced yoga in a children’s park on the grass, in the sun, with people passing by. I remembered this when I was asked to teach a Bikram Yoga class at the summer solstice event. Hatha is often translated as the union of sun and the moon, similar to the concepts of yang and yin in Asian and Chinese philosophy. The summer solstice is a wonderful time to celebrate the physical and spiritual health benefits of Yoga. I am proud to be part of this event in Times Square as a Bikram Yoga teacher”.

3:30pm-4:45pm – Douglass Stewart (Founders Flow – all levels welcome)

Douglass Stewart for instructor page

As creeks flow to streams and streams flow to rivers and rivers flow to the expanse of the ocean, each one of us at some point recognizes that we are flowing towards the Absolute. The paths are varied with peaks and valleys. Nevertheless, we learn to navigate with great skill when we practice yoga. Finding the most appropriate current can bring great joy. Come flow with me in this methodical, even paced, for all levels yoga class. Meet your limitations with grace and be absorbed into the great expanse of the Universal. Douglass Stewart is a yoga instructor at  the ISHTA Yoga Center and at Yogaworks. He is also the co-founder of Summer Solstice in Times Square:  Mind over Madness Yoga.

 7:00pm – 8:30pm – Dana Flynn (all levels Welcome)

Dana Flynn

Recognized throughout the yoga community as a true “teacher’s teacher,” Dana Flynn brings an ecstatic expression of movement, music and community to her practice and her students, as the co-founder of Laughing Lotus Yoga Centers and Lotus Flow Yoga. The former stockbroker, restaurateur and MTV personality turned a life in the limelight into a spiritual transformation, studying with legendary yogis: Jivamukti’s Sharon Gannon in New York and master teacher Rodney Yee in California. Fiercely innovative and independent, Dana honors and knows well the ancient traditions and codified asana systems of the yogic practice. During her many years of study, she “wanted to explore what it meant to move like herself. That was my greatest longing.”  Dana and Co-Founder Jasmine Tarkeshi channeled over 6 years of organic movement experimentation into the creation of the Laughing Lotus Yoga Center and Lotus Flow Yoga. Lotus Flow Yoga, is infused with a dynamic Dervish-like energy of dance, song and joyous revelry. “It is fresh, inspired and alive.”  With studios located in Manhattan’s Flatiron District and in San Francisco’s Mission District, Laughing Lotus is now home to more than just a studio; it’s a diverse community of creative, spirited, and playful yogis; a school for teachers and where you’ll find Dana Flynn, the “Janis Joplin of Yoga.”  Dana has appeared in The New York Times, Yoga Journal and on Good Morning America and the TODAY Show.

6.12.2012

Drexel Ladies Yoga Class! Special Thank You!

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Our 9 week yoga semester with Drexel University ladies came to an end this evening. All five of the ladies were so dedicated and excited about their practice and it filled me with joy to see them each week.  I can only imagine how busy their lives are between school, studying, work, and outside activities and it makes me so happy they set aside every Monday evening from 8-9:00pm to take time for themselves by doing something so powerful for the mind and body.  They are all such beautiful women inside and out, and they taught me so much throughout weeks together.  I can’t believe 9 weeks went by so fast.  These special ladies made me look forward to every Monday, it was the highlight to beginning my week.  I’m going to miss our class but thankful I know I will stay in touch with all of them as they’ve all become special to me.  Thank you Drexel ladies for an AMAZING opportunity, this was truly an incredible experience to share with you.

Spelling “Fire and Water” (wish we had the whole group tonight for pictures, but happy I will see you all again!)

The ladies who were at class this evening were so kind to fill out anonymous comment cards where I asked them to be honest in what they enjoyed and/or didn’t care for.  It is important for me to learn from students what they benefit from and what they enjoy most.  Here’s what they provided me.  Thanks again ladies!

3.19.2012

Thai Yoga Massage Workshop Experience!

 

Malik and I Thai Yoga Massage (deep stretch)

Timing is everything!  A couple weeks ago I posted on Facebook that the next certification training I’m interested in taking is TRX Suspension.  I was also considering mentioning  my interest in Thai Yoga Massage training too.  After searching thai yoga massage trainings for two days a workshop in Philadelphia I received an email from BikramPhiladelphia who is offering a Thai Yoga Massage workshop this weekend!  The workshop was taught by Julie and Jill who just returned from training in Thailand!   It was so much fun to take this workshop with these girls and learn about the practice and benefits of thai yoga massage.  Malik and I both agreed the stretching techniques were as awesome as the massage techniques.  I LOVED the technique in the black and white picture below.

Thai yoga massage improves circulation, releases mental and emotional stress, helps boost the immune system, and involves therapeutic stretches which relaxes tense muscles.   It is a great compliment to my current trainings and field of practice.

Malik doing one of my favoriate thai massage moves to me

The workshop invite read  “Thai Yoga Massage is a tradition that dates back to the time of the Buddha and is said the be the physical expression of the Buddhist term ‘Metta’ which means ‘Loving Kindness.’ By teaching presence through contact, we will practice ways we can interact with one another physically to release and relax tension from head to toe.”

The workshop is being held at BikramPhiladelphia was at 1520 Sansom Sunday March 18 .  I was so happy to take this workshop with one of my favorite yogis Malik.  I always enjoy doing yoga, workshops and special events with him.   Thai yoga massage workshop with Jill and Julie two ladies was an awesome experience.

 

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2.28.2012

Yoga Peach Celebrates 3 Year of Yoga!

February 28, 2009 Three Years Ago TODAY–my first week practicing yoga (read explanation of this picture below)

September 2011-Two and a half years later

This week I celebrate three years practicing yoga. Yes, it was just three years ago I discovered the joy of yoga and the incredible amount of changes physically, mentally, and emotionally that have transformed through yoga.  I’ve been so fortunate to connect with the amazing yoga community both locally in Philadelphia and worldwide thanks to the internet.  I’ve made so many friends through Yoga Peach Facebook that I’m very grateful for.  Thank you all for your support, encouragement, wisdom and friendship.  Three years ago when I decided to commit to five days of yoga I remember judging the practice and even making fun of yoga!  The first picture above is actually me at a party making jokes about yoga postures after my first few classes.  No one would have guessed that I would continue on and transform so much through the practice of yoga.  I’ve become a yoga instructor teaching Power, Vinyasa, and Prenatal Yoga, which lead me to become a Professional Birth Doula, all of which I am incredibly passionate about.  You never know where yoga will lead you, but I promise you it will lead you to discover some very wonderful and special things in your life.

I could write pages telling you how yoga has influenced and changed my life but I’ll spare you the long version and summarize my journey as briefly as possible.  Most of us know, yoga is so much more than exercise.  Yes, I’ve become slimmer, stronger, developed definition, and am nearly two sizes smaller through yoga.  I rarely eat out of emotions and never thought that was possible.  Like many new to yoga the physical aspect was perhaps my top objective when first introducing myself to the practice.  I remember thinking “If Jennifer Aniston swears by it to stay fit,  I’ve got to give this a go!”  Even more important than the actual physical changes I’ve experienced through regular yoga is the more positive body image I’ve developed.  This is something I had struggled with for many years and it’s amazing the huge and complete difference in just a few years.  Beyond physical fitness and weight management, I was curious to immerse myself into the practice of yoga to learn more, to explore the different types of yoga, and learn what exactly this “mind-body connection” meant that I heard so much about.  It’s not about how we look on the outside that counts you’ll discover through yoga.

Yoga continues to teach me how to listen, how to breathe, how to respond verses react.  Every time we make the effort to show up on our mat, yoga makes us confront challenges in our every day life.   Yoga teaches me how to connect the breath to the mind and how to connect the mind to the body.  If we can learn to really control the breathe, we develop the ability to control the mind and then the body.  Yoga helps me look even deeper at what’s most important in life, how to relax and calm the nervous system, yoga teaches me to accept the imperfections in myself and others, yoga teaches me to love myself and reminds me to find joy in simple moments.  Yoga assists me in being very best I can be each day.  Yoga makes me smile, yoga helps me feel more grounded, and YOGA MAKES ME HAPPY AND MORE AT EASE EVERY DAY.

I do not know where yoga will continue to lead me, but I am excited to discover!


9.8.2011

8 Week Break: Two Things I “Gave Up” for Two Months

photo via  myspace.com/notvtoday

July 8, two months ago today, I decided to take a break and temporarily “give up” two thing.  One was easy, one took some getting used to.  The first thing I removed from my routine was TV.  The last day I watched TV was July 7.  I’m not a huge TV junkie but admit I used to have it on as background noise every evening while I worked.  I often didn’t even pay attention to what program was on, it was just extra noise.  I found it quite easy the past two months with no tv and almost never even thought about it.  I read what’s going on in the new online and don’t really have shows that I follow.  (Well, Amazing Race but fortunately that was not on the past two months!)  Only a few times did I wonder what was going on with the Bachelorette since I had started the series and people were posting updates about it on Facebook.  I figured if I had time to actually sit down and watch TV that I probably should be doing something else with my time.

Photo taken of me in July at Power Yoga Works

The second thing I removed from my normal routine:  THE GYM! Yes, the gym!   I was a gym addict!  It was part of my everyday routine which I craved.   I canceled my gym membership July 8 and haven’t stepped foot into a cardio or weight class or on an exercise machine in 8 full weeks.  Well, small fib… one morning I ended up starting  my day next to a handsome man on the eliptical machine in my building for a very leisure 30 minute workout.   Other than that I seriously have not done any cardio or weights.   I spent the summer in Power Yoga Teacher Training and taking power yoga classes through the first week of August.  It was difficult mentally giving up the gym at first, then I realized how awesome I felt from just the challenge physically and mentally from power yoga.  For the past 8 weeks I haven’t done more than 3-4 90 minute power yoga classes a week.  (I’d love to start doing it 5-6 days a week!) But wait, there’s more: I’ve lost weight, my clothes are roomier, and I am more toned than when I was doing my weight classes at the gym.  It’s incredible what you can do to your body using your own body weight.   So what did I eat?  I already eat very healthy as you can tell by my recipes and posts but you probably won’t believe me if I tell you I added bagels into my diet weekly, and sometimes multiple days a week.  Yes, I said BAGELS.  I never used to eat bagels and the past two months I’ve really enjoyed them!  This was my favorite way to enjoy bagels when I had it it served as breakfast and lunch.

MY BAGEL OBSESSION

I even recall having pizza, chinese, pad thai, and even some chocolate during these weeks too which I never used to eat.   I’m not promoting doing yoga and eating poorly though.  I am simply making note that while overall I ate healthy I certainly had my days of eating induldging too and still lost weight.  It goes to show “all in moderation” sure is true.

For anyone that knows me this is a huge accomplishment for me to not go to a gym for 8 weeks.  I think this is the longest I’ve gone without a gym workout since teenage years.  I felt great physically and mentally all summer with just the  yoga.  I never would have imagined this years ago.   Before giving up the gym for the past eight weeks I was going to the gym every day for one to two hardcore cardio or weight classes.  I do look forward to getting back to the gym soon though and mixing in my old routines with my power yoga practice.

If you haven’t tried power yoga I highly recommend you give it a chance.  You’ll sweat more than you ever have in a gym class, I promise.  You’ll also build strength, tone up, increase your flexibility, DETOX your mind and body.  Think the heat in power yoga is not for you?  Try a regular Vinyasa flow class, they are a great total body workout too.

Just incase you’re wondering how on earth I could have toned up and lost weight doing power yoga and none of my regular gym workouts, here’s just a few of the many Benefits of Power Yoga.

-Power Yoga increases muscle strength, builds and tones the muscles, increase flexibility, improve concentration, and promotes weight loss.
-Power yoga flushes out toxins as well as cleanses the system.
-improves concentration, burns loads of calories, and improves lean muscle tissue.
-Power yoga also improves core strength as it exercises your back and stomach muscles.
-develops healthy posture as well as cure old and new injuries.
-Power yoga increases the circulation of blood which results in healthy & glowing skin.
-It boosts immune system & mental clarity as well as decreases pains triggered by stress.
-It enhances joint flexibility, stamina, lung volume, metabolic rate, physical endurance and heart efficiency.
-Power Yoga reduces stiffness from the body
-Power yoga teaches you to connect the breath to movements, decreases stress, tension and relax the mind and body.
-Power Yoga helps enhance the athlete’s performance. It has shown extreme benefits for cyclists, golfers, football players, basketball players, runners, swimmer and weight lifters.
-It increases your ability to focus.
-Power Yoga is a full body workout. It tones and works every muscle unlike most workouts using only a small group of specific muscles.

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