High Vibrations Yoga DVD by Jo Tastula

I’ve been practicing yoga pretty regularly lately with YogaGlo and one of my favorite yoga teachers on the site is Jo Tastula. Besides having a great Australian accent she teaches a pretty darn near perfect vinyasa flow class. I always feel inspired, focused, and in the moment afterwards. Most of her classes on YogaGlo range between 30 and 60 minutes–enough time to get good and sweaty–, but I recently discovered she also has an excellently produced DVD, High Vibrations Yoga, which consists of five short meditations and five sun salutation practices. Any combination of the practices can be completed in less than 20 minutes. Great for those moments when you don’t have a lot of time, but want to reconnect with and realign your body’s energy.

The five practices focus on the concepts of abundance, release, strength, balance, and peace. As the instructions for the DVD state, you should “start where you are. Get still. Listen within, and take a deeply honest survey of how you are feeling,” and then choose one of the meditations and yoga practices for a transformational yoga pick-me-up. In addition to the outstanding yoga instruction, the music is top notch (Lisbeth Scott’s vocals are absolutely mesmerizing) and the scenery of Sequoia National Park is stunning. All in all it’s a great beginning to intermediate yoga practice for those not looking to get really sweaty, but looking for a little inner peace and outer strength.

David Swenson on Change and Personal Growth

“If you want to grow…

…you have to take that step into the unknown…”

Inspiring to listen to David’s insight into personal growth and pushing our limits. Also noticed that David has a new blog section on his website and that he has some new ashtanga yoga posters…SWEET!…totally going to snag one of those.

“Yoga With a View”

Last night while waiting for the Bachelorette finale to pop up on Hulu (don’t judge me…), right there on Hulu’s front page I came across a new yoga series that looks like a great way to get a quick yoga pick-me-up. Many of you will likely be familiar with the yoga instructor — the new Mrs. Alec Baldwin, a.k.a. Hilaria Thomas (@hilariabaldwin) — who has been in the news a lot lately and also teamed up with Plum TV for six episodes of “Yoga with a View” on Hulu.

I’m a huge fan of YogaGlo, but it’s tough to argue with a free, refreshing, and calming way to start and end each day.  Shot on location from spectacular settings, the series provides a convenient and visually stunning way to de-stress and recharge in 20 minutes.

Here’s a little flavor of what to expect:

Daily Yoga Practice — Sometimes Less Is More…

With life constantly on the move and not enough hours in the day, it can be tough to fit in an hour or more of yoga on a consistent basis. Unfortunately, a lot of us talk ourselves out of unrolling the mat if we don’t think we have time for a “long” yoga session. Twenty minutes just doesn’t seem like enough time to make much difference, does it?

I’ll concede that more yoga is usually better, but a lot of us forget that a little yoga every day can still have a dramatic impact on our lives. It’s definitely better than no yoga. Unrolling the mat every day, even for just five minutes, proves that sometimes less is more…

Here are a few resources I’ve used lately to help me get on the mat even when time is short:

  • I’m a huge fan of YogaGlo, which offers unlimited access to streaming yoga classes for the price you would normally pay for a live class or two each month.  When you’re in a time-crunch, YogaGlo has options to sort archived classes according to teacher, style, level, duration and specific use. Makes it super simple to find a 10 minute class when that’s all the time you have. YogaGlo has an excellent lineup of instructors and the videos even stream on your iPhone or iPad so you can practice just about anywhere! Click here to see a sample of a 30 minute morning yoga class by Kathryn Budig.
  • Yoga Journal’s free YouTube page features home practice videos ranging from 15 to 25 minutes–perfect for those days when you need a quick yoga pick-me-up. Lest you procrastinate, here’s a 15 minute practice to get you moving:

The AWOL Yogini by Kelly Morris ~ Wanderlust SPEAKEASY 2011

Video description:

Kelly Morris is the founder and director of The Conquering Lion Yoga Teacher Training Program/NYC. A close student of Geshe Michael Roach and Lama Christie McNally, Kelly’s Conquering Lion Yoga reunites two sacred lineages that were once One: the precious Tibetan Buddhist insights of karma and emptiness with the Indian vinyasa tradition. By practicing both the out vinyasa of breath and the inner vinyasa of intention and aim, an unsurpassed opening in the heart of the aspirant occurs. It is this opening that permits the practice to reach it’s final aim: complete and utter self-transformation, from flesh and blood to being of light, in this lifetime. Kelly teaches that with correct understanding and application of these precious and ancient insights, your life will be transformed from suffering to unlimited joy.

To learn more about Kelly Morris and the Conquering Lion Yoga Teacher Training Program, please visit http://kellymorrisyoga.com/

Meet the Fockers of Wanderlust…SPEAKEASY 2011

Always let yourself wander…
…because life’s most beautiful moments come in the spaces…

Video description:

Come meet the Fockers of Wanderlust! One of the central purposes of Wanderlust is to create community around shared values. Meet the founders of Wanderlust, Jeff Krasno, Schuyler Grant and Sean Hoess, to discuss how to grow this community and define its values. Hear about the inspiration behind Wanderlust from Yoga to Yoda and share your ideas on how to evolve the event.

Wanderlust was created by three friends with a long and deep relationship: the 20+ year husband and wife duo of Jeff Krasno and Schuyler Grant, and their mutual friend (and Jeff’s business partner of a decade), Sean Hoess. We all met back in college during the dark ages of the late 80s. Long before Wanderlust existed, we loved to throw a good party and that hasn’t changed much.

But Wanderlust is more than a party. While it’s a great time, from the beginning we wanted to infuse it with meaning. We saw an opportunity to create an event that is fun but also based on a series of underlying ideals. We hoped to create a unique event where attendees were actually participants, an event where people left feeling better than when they came, an event that could be – at the very least – a good time and – at the most — personally transformative.

Finding a clear and concise purpose is a process both for a business and an individual. It’s very hard to distill & it can change. For Wanderlust, our core purpose is to create community around shared values. It has been incredibly gratifying to see such a large community growing around the pillars of mindful living – yoga, the arts, personal spirituality, environmentalism, organics and conscious consumerism – and to know that Wanderlust is becoming a central gathering point for this community.

The cauldron of talent at Wanderlust never ceases to amaze us and while we continue to seek out diverse and gifted artists, teachers, speakers and leaders — it often feels like the festival is being equally shaped by the talent of its participants. The scholars, buskers, acroyogis, hoopers, and artists that have organically integrated into the event have created the kind of exchange of ideas and energy that could never be replicated by any traditional festival or concert experience.

Wanderlust continues to evolve to include a broader range of experiences, including hiking, biking, running and other outdoor activities, a more diverse array of lectures, expanded food and wine events, movement and burlesque workshops, and even a community garden project. Wherever possible, these new activities will involve interaction and interactivity, so our attendees can learn and create as part of the event.

Wanderlust 2012 will be bigger and better than ever. There’s a lot to do, and many more locations at which to do it. We hope you can come take advantage of all of it, but don’t plan too hard. Always let yourself wander, because life’s most beautiful moments come in the spaces.

Please visit www.wanderlustfestival.com to learn more about the lineup for 2012!

Yoga Blossoms in NYC

[Click video to view on YogaJournal.com…who isn’t a fan of yoga in the wild jungles of New York?…]

(Nearly) Everyone Loves Random Acts of Airport Yoga

With the San Francisco Airport’s new Yoga Room splashing into the news this week, we take the opportunity to highlight random acts of yoga occurring in airports across the world. Clearly, airports and spontaneous yoga demonstrations were made for each other.
First off, here’s kirtan chantress extraordinaire, Ragani, and her band members making good use of their time in the Charlotte airport on the way home from a trip…

Next, a group of traveling yoginis, clearly inspired by Ragani’s amazing balancing act, attempt a world record for most yoginis striking a pose on an automatic walkway at the same time…I think they win…

A few tips on how to turn a delayed flight into the next great opportunity to impress your fellow travelers with a perfectly executed handstand…

Here we have handstand splits (2:30 into the clip)…glad no one got hurt…need I say more…

Have a “sore bum” from the long flight? Give these stretches a try…

I wonder if you have to get a permit for a synchronized yoga demonstration like this…

Finally, the last few clips are from folks who might be just as happy as the rest of the yoga world if the Yoga Room concept really takes off in airports…

Gentle Flow Yoga with Kathryn Budig

If you’re under the weather today or just needing a little more relaxed yoga session, this gentle flow yoga practice on Yoga Journal’s Youtube channel should do the trick. Gets the body moving a little bit, without too many sustained inversions.

Video description:

This Gentle Yoga Flow practice is accessible to all levels. There is a primary focus on hip opening, gentle lunging and twisting. This sequence is ideal for the beginning yoga student or regular yogi who wants to tone it down for the day. For this practice you will need two blocks and your strap. Feel free to use this practice anytime you’re looking for a little revitalization. Visit http://www.yogajournal.com for more videos.

Hank Gets a Little Yoga Treatment from Yogi Victor on King of the Hill

I know this clip’s a little old, but I love the heck out of this scene from King of the Hill. While Yogi Victor (Johnny Depp) is quite the crude yoga teacher, he clearly has Hank’s best interests at heart… Who knows, Hank might even learn how to “breath through his feet” once he gets a tank-top. Talk about some great lines…

Hank walks into class:

Hank: Uh, hello, I was wondering if yoga could help my back because it hurts like all…

Yogi Victor: Let me tell you a story. Once I was like you–skeptical, near-sighted, paunchy–then I met a special friend. This glorious friend took me to places I thought I’d never…

Hank: Eh, excuse me, is this one of those stories where this special friend of yours turns out to be yoga?

Yogi Victor: What time do you evacuate your bowels?

Hank: What?

Yogi Victor:  There’s only one right answer! Between 4 and 6 in the morning.

Hank: Well this was a great way to spend a lunch hour…

Yogi Victor: Lunch is one of the worst things you can do to yourself!

At Hank’s disability hearing (where Yogi Victor is apparently his key witness):

Board member: Mr. Hill, this guy is not helping your case.

Hank: Exactly, let me ask you, what healthy person would voluntarily spend five minutes with this joker? If I wasn’t in horrible pain wouldn’t I have kicked this guys ass?

Board: Hmmmm…, yeah…, we find for Hank Hill. Congratulations.

Yogi Victor: Why are you rewarding this man for abandoning the yoga way!?! Look at him. He’s clinched from his back muscles down to his inner eye…

Any other T.V. shows out there with great yoga scenes?

Daily Sun Salutation Yoga Practice: Surya Namaskar A & B

Video description:

This is an 18 minute Surya Namaskar or Sun Salutation follow-along practice. It’s a great way to wake up in the morning, or to end your day. While there are modifications for beginners, poses are not described in great detail so if you are brand new to yoga, you may fare better with a more tutorial-like video. This video is practice oriented, with 5 repetitions of Surya Namaskar A and 5 of Surya Namaskar B. While these sequences are taken from the Ashtanga tradition, Forrest Yoga modifications have been given for a few of the asanas, including lengthening the back of your neck at all times in order to reduce neck and upper back pain which I find sometimes accumulates from lots of sun salutes. 

My name is Shiva Reinhardt and I am a yoga teacher at the Blue Lotus Healing Arts Center in Ruidoso, NM. Our website is http://www.ruidosodayspa.com

Music from http://www.magnatune.com under the Creative Commons license: Artist: Hans Christian, Album: Rumi Symphony, Song: Divine Love

The Ultimate Sexy Yoga Battle

“It’s Not Sexy, It’s Yoga” vs. “It’s Not Fitness, It’s Life”

Surely by now you’ve seen the original, if not minorly scandalous Equinox yoga video, featuring Briohny Smyth. Well, it’s a great week for the yoga world now that humorist Michael A. Stusser (“The Dead Guy Interviews”) takes his yoga skills to the next level with a spot on parody of the original.

The Parody…


The Original…

[Read more…]

Krishna Das ~ Chants of a Lifetime: Searching for a Heart of Gold (Wanderlust SPEAKEASY 2011)

As a long-time fan of Krishna Das, I really enjoyed hearing some of his story…

Join Krishna Das (acknowledged as the Chant Master of American Yoga by the New York Times) as he shares how he entered into the practice of chanting and what it means to him today, as well as his relationship with Maharaj-ji.

Layering traditional Hindu kirtan with instantly accessible melodies and modern instrumentation, Krishna Das has been called yoga’s “rock star.” With a remarkably soulful voice that touches the deepest chord in even the most casual listener, Krishna Das — known to friends, family, and fans as simply KD — has taken the call-and-response chanting out of yoga centers and into concert halls, becoming a worldwide icon and the best-selling chant artist of all time, with over 300,000 records sold.

KD spent the late ’60’s traveling across the country as a student of Ram Dass, and in August 1970, he finally made the journey to India, which led him to Ram Dass’ own beloved guru, Neem Karoli Baba, known to most as Maharaj-ji.

Given the name Krishna Das, KD began to chant as part of following the path of Bhakti yoga — the yoga of devotion.

After two and a half years with Maharaj-ji, returned to USA – alas, six months after his return, word came that Maharaj-ji had died.

He took solace in music, finding peace and strength in both his Bhakti yoga practice as well as in such heroes as Ray Charles, Van Morrison, Steely Dan, and Bruce Springsteen (whom he laughingly calls “the Bodhisattva of New Jersey”). KD also co-founded Triloka Records, a California-based label specializing in world music, releasing such  artists as Jai Uttal, sarod virtuoso Ali Akbar Khan, and legendary jazz musician/composer Jackie McLean.

In 1994, KD started leading chant at Jivamukti Yoga Center, NYC, with an ever-growing audience of yoga students which has led to chant with people all around the world.

Since 1996 KD has recorded 14 albums including his latest ones ‘Heart as Wide as the World” and ‘Chants of a Lifetime’ (book + CD).

“The chanting just hits you and you want to be a part of it,” KD promises. “That’s the point of this whole thing. That’s what cuts through all the ‘stuff’. You get lit up. You don’t have to know what it means.”

Leslie Kaminoff Shares His Two Cents on Whether Yoga Will Wreck Your Body

Here’s the cover of the soon to be released book whose author recently set the yoga community’s tail on fire  with his New York Time’s article, “How Yoga Can Wreck Your Body.”

While I’ll reserve my response until I read the book, I thought I’d share Leslie Kaminoff’s video response to the article:

Leslie Kaminoff is the author of Yoga Anatomy, 2nd Edition.

Shiva Rea on Yoga Energy Activism – Wanderlust SPEAKEASY 2011

Shiva Rea addresses the Speakeasy attendees in Squaw Valley (2011) regarding Yoga Energy Activism: how we can regenerate our energy linking our heart, body, home and ecology.

Shiva Rea, M.A. is a yogini firekeeper, sacred activist, global adventurer and leading innovator in the evolution of prana flow yoga, transformational vinyasa flow integrating the tantric bhakti roots of yoga, Krishnamacharya’s teachings and a universal, quantum approach to the body. Shiva is known for bringing the roots of yoga alive for modern practitioners in creative, dynamic and life-transforming ways and for offering the synthesis form of prana flow out in the world. Shiva is the creator of Prana Flow Yoga, Yogadventure Retreats, Yoga Trance Dance for Life, Moving Activism for 1,008,000 Trees, the worldwide Global Mala Project, Yogini Conferences and E2: The Evolutionary Edge Tour. She writes for Yoga Journal, Yoga Plus Joyful Living, is the author of award-winning CD’s and DVD’s, and contributor to many publications and features.

For more information on Shiva Rea and her teaching schedule, please visit: http://shivarea.com/

For more information on the Global Mala Project, please visit: http://yogamonth.org/globalmala/


Lululemon’s ‘Ready to Get Its Yoga On…”

I don’t own a single piece of Lululemon clothing (not out of principle or anything like that…not really sure why…), but I do enjoy a little bit of yoga humor…

HAPPY NEW YEAR and thanks for making 2011 Daily Cup of Yoga’s most amazing year ever!

Rod Stryker on the Yoga of Fulfillment – Wanderlust SPEAKEASY 2011

The ancient tradition of tantra yoga is the ultimate science of fulfillment. Illuminating both the path of self-knowledge and the path of becoming the person you were meant to be, the teachings provide a roadmap to uncover your soul’s call to greatness and to unlock your capacity to achieve it. In this lecture Rod discusses his new book, The Four Desires and outlines the keys to fulfilling your worldly and spiritual potential, achieving your ultimate destiny, the science of transforming thought into form, and the keys to finding and fulfilling your dharma.

Rod Stryker is the founder of ParaYoga and widely considered one of the country’s leading yoga and meditation teachers. He has taught yoga for nearly 30 years and leads retreats, workshops, and trainings worldwide.

For more info please visit: www.rodstryker.com.

Seane Corn on Embodying Spiritual Activism – Wanderlust SPEAKEASY 2011

Seane Corn shares a candid heart-to-heart with the SPEAKEASY audience assembled in Stratton, VT in June of 2011, where she spoke of her life as a yogi, from just discovering yoga, to where her heart has led her to today… as a seeker, student, teacher and ultimately, a servant. Hear first-hand about her work on and off the mat, her projects, the integration of the yoga practice- into the mystery of life, and how listening to intuition and choosing to give her life over to Spirit has rewarded her with the richest and most joyful gifts ever imagined.

Seane Corn is an internationally renowned Vinyasa Flow Yoga Teacher and spiritual activist. Featured in commercials, magazines and named the “National Yoga Ambassador” for YouthAIDS in 2005, Seane now utilizes her national platform to bring awareness to the HIV/AIDS crisis. Since 2007, she has been training leaders of activism through her co-founded organization Off the Mat Into the World®. Seane has spent time in India, Cambodia and Africa working with prostitutes and street children, teaching yoga, providing support for child labor and educating people about HIV/AIDS prevention. Seane is also co-founder of the Seva Challenge Humanitarian Tours, encouraging yoga teachers to get involved in fund and awareness raising efforts across the globe. Her award winning DVD’s are available through Gaiam and Yoga Journal, and most recently “Detox Flow Yoga” from Sounds True.

Learn more about Seane at http://www.seanecorn.com/.

You can explore her work with Off The Mat Into The World at http://www.offthematintotheworld.org/.

Lori Deschene on Authentic Connections In a Connected World – Wanderlust SPEAKEASY 2011

Tiny Buddha” founder, Lori Deschene, explores how social media can either help or hinder us in forming meaningful, authentic connections.

Lori Deschene is the founder of Tiny Buddha, a community blog that publishes tips and stories about letting go of pain and embracing happiness. In addition to sharing her own struggles and insights and encouraging others to do the same, she also offers daily wisdom quotes through @tinybuddha on Twitter and the Tiny Buddha Facebook page. In an increasingly disconnected, information-overloaded world, Tiny Buddha has emerged as a place for authentic connection—where everyone has the same authority to share what they’ve learned and how they apply it. With nearly 1 million views per month, Tiny Buddha is quickly growing into one of the most popular inspirational sites on the web.

You can discover more at http://tinybuddha.com/ and follow her at @tinybuddha.

Detox Flow Yoga Class With Clara Roberts-Oss

Check out Clara’s website at http://www.pixieyoga.net/
Music by Amrita at  http://www.amritamusic.net/