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Blog Archives: January 2015 — December 2015

Peaceful Practices for a Smooth Thanksgiving

November 23, 2015
Staci Brindle
Thanksgiving is fast approaching, and as we get closer to the date of marathon cooking and eating,  it is easy for tension to build. Friends, family, food and festivities can offer an opportunity for blissful gatherings, but can also induce a sense of chaos.  Strike the right balance by planning ahead, nourishing yourself, and taking time to soothe your mind and soul. In order to avoid falling into the pit of Thanksgiving overwhelm, follow these simple tips: Plan ahead. In the days before Thanksgiving, check off as many to-dos as possible....

Why Use a Mala?

October 26, 2015
“Malas are important tools of both worship and healing. When we use a mala with our mantra recitation, the power of the mantra enters into the beads of the mala, which become energized at a subtle level. The more often we use them, the greater their power becomes. The mala gathers and magnifies the power of the mantra forming a sphere of energy and protection around us.” ~ David Frawley     Malas have become a popular tool in the yoga world these days. The reason is not just because they are beautiful to wear, but because they really ...

An Unassuming, Profound Man: David Swenson

October 14, 2015
Libby Cox
You wouldn't know it if you met him randomly on the street or at the grocery store, or even if he walked into your yoga center to take a drop-in class, but David Swenson is kind of a big deal. Ever personable, funny and understated, David is a teacher's teacher. I have an old story I like to tell about him, to illustrate his kind heart and sweet demeanor, which underlie the visible accomplishments of a lifetime of practice. When I first started working at Yoga Yoga North, David came in to take a led Ashtanga primary series class. I ...

Be In Your Own Field - My Experience at A Women’s Retreat with Jenn Wooten & Angie Knight

October 14, 2015
Fanny Priest
Whenever, in the course of a visualization exercise or in a yoga nidra practice, I am asked to imagine a safe space that feels like home, I always picture an open field, calm and peaceful, surrounded by trees. And, this time last year,  when I arrived at the Margaret Austin Center for my first weekend women’s retreat with Jenn Wooten and Angie Knight, I saw before me and recognized the field of my lucid dreams. And it was every bit as beautiful as I’d imagined. I’d waited for years to attend this retreat:  difficult years of childbearing ...

Move Into the Fall Season with Grace and Balance

October 07, 2015
Clarissa Smith
The seasons have officially changed from Summer to Fall, a predominantly Vata time of year. The Fall season and Vata dosha share the qualities of dry, light, cold, rough, mobile or windy, subtle, and clear. Because the qualities that are arising externally are also arising within, keeping the system in balance through these changes is important. If we do not adjust accordingly, the Vata energy within can accumulate, enter the circulatory system, and result in imbalances. Some of those imbalances can manifest as dry lips and skin, excessive ...

Write, and All is Coming: Yoga and the Creative Self

September 25, 2015
Susan Somers-Willet
When I practice yoga, I often find myself having a conversation with dead poets. When the instructor at the head of the class says, “Let go of your thoughts about the day,” I think of William Wordsworth intoning, “The world is too much with us.” Entering a restorative pose, I hear the echo of Walt Whitman’s invitation to “lean and loafe at my ease.” When I ask my own yoga students to mindfully transition to the next pose, I silently impart the blessing of Lucille Clifton: “may you in your innocence / sail through this to that.” Call me ...

Cooking Together for Yogis: Integrating Ayurveda

August 27, 2015
Chef Andrew Hecht
My journey connecting food and yoga has been an unexpected one. Growing up, I never would have imagined myself teaching plant-based, health-supportive cooking and Ayurveda to yoga practitioners. My family was a middle-of-the-spectrum American family and it wasn’t until I went to college that I even began to hear of yoga. Of course, at the time, I held the common misconception that yoga is all about exercising and becoming more flexible. But, one of the things we find through Yoga and Ayurveda is that everything is personal. It was after a 5 ...

What is it About Larry Payne?

August 20, 2015
Sarah Frances Reinsch
I have to admit, when I first started writing this blog about Larry Payne, I didn’t know much about him except that he is the co-author of my Yoga Therapy textbook, Yoga Therapy and Integrative Medicine. Upon my research of Larry,  learned that  L.A. Times named Larry “One of America’s most respected Yoga teachers”. This is quite the statement, so what is it about Larry? Larry Payne, Ph.D. E-RYT500, YTRX, is an accomplished Doctor and Yogi with a Master’s degree and Doctorate in fitness education with an emphasis in Hatha Yoga from ...

Happy Birthday Yogi Bhajan!

August 20, 2015
On August 26th, we will celebrate what would have been Yogi Bhajan's 86th birthday. The master of Kundalini Yoga, Yogi Bhajan guided and inspired the original founders of Yoga Yoga to become teachers, open a yoga center, and train hundreds of teachers. Whether you have ever been to a Kundalini Yoga class or not at Yoga Yoga, it is because of Yogi Bhajan and his teachings that there is a Yoga Yoga. See our video from last year's Birthday Celebration! What was so special about this teacher and his connection with us? I remember the ...

Yoga and Astrology

August 11, 2015
Yoga and astrology are the oldest knowledge systems developed by the human mind and they show up universally throughout all cultures. Yet it is in the Vedas, or the ancient wisdom of India, that yoga and astrology have enjoyed their most intimate and sophisticated association. Both were practiced side by side by the ancient seers or rishis of India. To practice yoga without astrology or astrology without yoga was simply incomprehensible to the masters of Vedic thought. To be a great astrologer, one needed to be a good yogi and to progress ...

Why Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training?

August 11, 2015
Yoga changes you. It is guaranteed. People notice these changes, sometimes before you do, and they will want to know how it is that you are a 
different person. And you tell them – it’s the yoga. All yoga is powerfully transformational. Yet it has been said that practicing Kundalini Yoga for one year accomplishes what it may take 22 years for other yoga styles to achieve. Perhaps that is so, but one thing is certain - if yoga changes you and Kundalini Yoga really changes you then Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training absolutely, positively, and ...

Cooking Together for Yogis: The Practice of Food and Yoga

July 29, 2015
Lori Johnson
Yoga Yoga Teacher Training, in partnership with The Natural Epicurean, is excited to offer a unique and innovative new program which combines the principles of Ayurveda-based cooking and Yoga into one learning experience intended to foster self-inquiry and deep personal transformation. This program includes lectures, discussion, and experiential learning. Class time will be divided between yoga practice at Yoga Yoga Westgate and hands-on time in our educational kitchen at The Natural Epicurean spent perfecting your cooking skills. You will ...

The Founder's Circle 10 Year Anniversary

July 29, 2015
Joel Reese
When we opened our Northwest studio on Burnet Lane in 2005, we wanted the students who had helped us grow from a one room studio into the largest locally owned studio in Austin. We wanted to share our mutual commitment with our students that allowed them to have a deeper, longer-lasting, and more impactful practice. We created the Founder's Circle: a special membership only offered once a year and only to 108 students. Students were able to bring a friend and share the joy of yoga with those they love, to study deeper with teachers, and ...

Punk Rock Yoga

May 04, 2015
Joel Reese
Friday, August 28 - Sunday, August 30 Yoga Yoga Westgate Raghunath weaves in his more than 20 years of practicing and living like a yogi to demonstrate 'the yogi's paradigm of reality.' His gift is to take the esoteric yoga philosophy of ancient India, which he studied for over 6 years in an ashram as a celibate bramachari (monk), and make it accessible and practical for the contemporary world. He does this eloquently with enthusiasm, humor, song and passionate devotion. Though students may come initially for his strong ...