Dharana, when yoga changed everything…

Ardha Chandrasana/Half Moon pose There have been a handful of poses that have really progressed me toward dharana, the sixth limb of yoga. Once we have cultivated stillness through asana, pranayama, and pratyahara, we're ready to build concentration. For me, half moon pose is among those that has helped the most with concentration. It's one... Continue Reading →

Just breath and movement

The fifth limb of yoga is Pratyahara, withdrawal of the senses. Like the limbs that come before it, pratyahara can be experienced in a number of ways. The times I’ve heard runner’s talk about hitting their stride reminds me of the way pranayama leads to pratyahara and then dharana. I was never a good runner... Continue Reading →

Pranayama, controlling my breath

As much as the asanas work to improve our understanding of the yamas and niyamas, they do even more for pranayama. Pranayama is breath control and makes up the fourth limb of yoga. Practicing pranayama in the asanas helps us to have it when we need it in life. Like posture, breath controls quite a... Continue Reading →

Learning to be still

Given that the yamas and niyamas generally align with Christian beliefs, it’s no wonder that the asanas are the first limb of yoga that Americans are generally familiar with. The interpretations of these limbs among Americans tend to vary and I could easily see how yogis are considered to be taking ideas like the yamas... Continue Reading →

Niyamas in action

Mermaid pose is my best reminder of the Niyamas. Explanation at the bottom. Theoretically, one moves on from the yamas to the niyamas once they’ve been mastered. The niyamas are the ethical observances that are the second limb of yoga. What really ends up happening is each limb is it’s own practice that falters and... Continue Reading →

Getting into the Yamas

The pose that most embodies the yamas in my practice. I always have to remember to not hurt myself, be honest with myself about it, to not overreach and risk tomorrows progress, to remember that taking care of my body is more important than my desire to get into the pose, and to let go... Continue Reading →

A study of yoga

My notecards to remember the 8 Limbs of Yoga A lot of people roll their eyes when I mention that there’s a lot more to it than stretching or even exercise. The exercise is actually just one little piece of it. I was letting yoga heal me and transform my view of the world well... Continue Reading →

To Balance by Reaching Higher

Yoga isn't about reaching for perfection, but reaching for where you want to be by knowing and accepting where you are.

Chasing the Handstand

Yep, I'm one of those yogis chasing the handstand. But it isn't even about the handstand anymore. It's everything that chasing the handstand does for me. What pose are you chasing?

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