I became a yoga teacher about 7 years ago because I knew that I needed an exercise that I would LOVE to do or I wouldn’t be committed to doing it at all. I, like many other Americans, would stay in the couch potato position, losing my health as I got older rather than becoming stronger and healthier.
I fell in love with yoga because not only did my body become strong, so did my focus and my mental state. It challenged every part of me to begin to think and act differently as well. I became more conscious and aware of life around me. I felt more in-tune with my body and more of a connection to my own life.
Here are some of the benefits of yoga:
Increased flexibility and balance
Increased muscle strength and tone
Improved respiration, energy and vitality
Maintaining a balanced metabolism
Cardio and circulatory health
Improved athletic performance
Protection from injury
Mental clarity and focus
Taps out of the fight and flight mode and keeps your body in the calm and relaxed state
Makes you happier
Makes you feel better
Creates longevity and overall wellness and much more!
Summer begins a trend to stay INSIDE because it’s so hot in Phoenix. The great thing about yoga is that it even helps with our mindsets about the heat!
The yogic philosophy teaches gratitude in all things and teaches a positive lifestyle and mindset rather than complaining and finding the negatives in our lives.
It’s like a whole body/mind makeover.
When you come to a class and things are weighing you down in life, you will leave with a whole different mindset and feel a sense of renewal and restoration in your body and mind. You’ll be so glad you came and like my other students you will find yourself saying: “ This was just what I needed!”
I begin my GENTLE classes (Fridays 8:30- 9:45 am) with a deep breathing and grounding excessive where we begin to focus in on the sensations of our breath expanding our lung capacity. We focus in on the sensations of our body, allowing thoughts to come and go while focusing on the breath.
Then, we begin to warm up the body with some gentle stretches, learning to listen and take cues from our own body rather than fighting against it. Then, we move into some more heat building poses to create heat and energy in the body so that our muscles are challenged gently and begin building strength and stability. Lastly, we come to a cool down portion where we slow it down, moving into a pace that still is working the muscles but is also causing them once more to relax. Lastly, we have our final pose which is lying on the floor for at least 5-6 minutes, which is the hardest pose for some because that is when we aren’t working at all except to allow our body to feel and take notice of all that it is experiencing.
On Wednesdays @6:15-7:30 pm, we have a Yoga Nidra Class. NIDRA means SLEEP. A Yoga Nidra class is one hour but the benefits are as if you had a 3-hour deep REM sleep though you are conscious. This class is a small portion of stretching and then for at least 45 minutes we are lying down on the floor in a guided meditation. People leave this class feeling so refreshed and energized at the same time. Most cannot believe they went to that deep of a relaxation state and mental clarity and other great physical and emotional results take place. My students love it and keep coming back every week.
Each class is a small fee of $10 per student. I also am a Massage Therapist and provide private Yoga and Yoga Nidra sessions in the office.
By Teri Undreiner, Certified Massage Therapist and Yoga Instructor