Through meditative yoga, you can learn to turn off the noise inside your head and focus on your breathing, an incredibly calming activity. John Denninger, a psychiatrist at Harvard Medical School, has been leading a study on the link between yoga and the reduction of stress and disease on the body. Denninger says that "the kinds of things that happen when you meditate do have effects throughout the body, not just in the brain.” Meditative yoga helps you inject the silence you never knew you needed into your otherwise busy life. Just try not to fall asleep in Shavasana pose (easier said than done!). When you think of exercises that can help you relax, yoga is often the default. This is because yoga is all about remaining calm while maintaining some uncomfortable positions that slowly become more comfortable the longer you practice. Yoga is even a great way to help kids relax, as it can decrease stress and improve attention and behavior, according to a study by Wayne State University. And heck, if yoga can help even children find their calm, then you know that’s powerful stuff! Calming yoga is wonderfully beneficial in clearing the cobwebs from your mind and helping you to find your center. Moving Meditation by Julie Montagu
1. Find Focus and Be Present
When you feel anxious, chances are you've been worrying in circles. This practice will help you shift into a focused state through the use of balancing and standing poses. The goal of this focus is to bring you back to the present moment, dissolving any attachments to fear-based thoughts and busy thinking.
2. Positive Affirmations for Confidence
Positivity goes a long way in helping you to build a happier life. An affirmation is a statement we say to ourselves in order to re-wire our thoughts. Much like exercise, the repetition of positive affirmations can raise our level of feel-good hormones and completely change our mood. In this session Julie will share with you, four of her favourite positive affirmations for greater confidence, self-love and gratitude.
3. 14-Day Yoga Challenge: Yin Yoga for the Back
Today you will be taken through a wonderful and soothing yin yoga class that will help relax and ease tension in your back. By holding poses for prolonged periods you will lengthen your spine, reduce your stress levels, and finish this class feeling rejuvenated and energized.
4. Energizing Vinyasa: Twist and Flow
This vinyasa class is all about twisting through your body and tuning in to your natural ability to detoxify. Use the core of your values to support your path to desire while eliminating the skeptical voices in your head.
5. 5-Minute Meditations: Escape to the Beach
Remember that happy place on the beach from your last vacation? The sun is shining, the sand is warm, and the waves are gently lulling you into relaxation. During this visualization meditation, expert Stacy Conlon will guide you to a sense of calm reminiscent of your favorite private beach spot.
6. Supported Restorative Forward Bends
Restorative yoga takes many forms and in this class Judith Hanson Lasater will guide you through supported forwards bends and meditation. These two elements make a perfect pairing because forward bends lead us naturally and intuitively towards a meditative state. As a result of this practice you'll feel more open and aligned back body.
7. Restorative Yin Practice
Being over stimulated and anxious can cause irritation and imbalance in our body systems. This wonderful yin and restorative yoga class will help nourish your senses and center your energy. Enhance your experience by lighting some candles, rubbing lavender essential oils on your pressure points, and grabbing an eye pillow.
8. Supported Restorative Backbends
This class is all about supported backbends. Bending forward is a large part of our daily routine. We lean forward and sit at the computer facing forward. These restorative poses, guided by Judith Hanson Lasater, will help undo the constant habit of this action to help you relieve tension and reduce pain. Backbends do not need to be strenuous or intense in order to feel the benefits. These poses are more about opening rather than stretching.
9. Body Awareness: 5-Minute Relaxation Technique
For times when you are feeling a little overwhelmed or anxious, this five minute body awareness exercise will bring you back to the present moment and free you from stressful thoughts. This relaxation exercise can be done at any time of day and is most effective when you sit in a chair with your feet firmly on the floor; but find the most comfortable seated position that works for you. Give yourself this little break to feel calm, happy and balanced.
10. Julie's Simple Happiness Pose
For those times when we are feeling not-so-great, practicing an inversion or ‘legs up the wall” pose can be an effective way to increase our energy levels, lower stress and boost our mood . In this session Julie will guide you through her “happiness pose” that she does each day to feel more energized, focused and present.