Tag Archives: stretching

Yoga for Traveling

If going on a vacation or traveling for work has one major drawback, it’s getting out of the healthy fitness habits we have worked so hard to maintain while at home. Nothing beats taking a trip to the beach or visiting a new city, but by the third day our bodies begin to feel like they have been left behind, neglected, and ultimately not part of the fun.

Being in a different environment, sitting or standing more than usual, wearing brand new work shoes or cheap vacation flip flops can all increase muscular stress on our bodies, especially if we’ve ditched the exercise routine. It is no wonder we often feel as if we need a vacation after a vacation; our bodies are stiff, tired and worn out from skipping our workouts.

Whether you practice yoga regularly or have yet to try it, these pose suggestions will help you at least save your lower back, hips and attitude from going south while you are away from the comforts of a healthy routine at home.


Yogabytes to Reboot Your Booty

Lack in muscle tone, a stiff neck, a couple of aching wrists and two tired eyes are what our modern day life is plagued with as a result of sitting at a computer for hours on end. If you fall into this category, help is on the way. All it takes is a few moments of computer yoga to feel refreshed, revitalized and ready to take on a new assignment. Aches and pains have nothing on you when you practice this simple yet effective routine during long stretches of time on your computer. Be the first to share this with your friends.

Facebook Fanny Firmer

Place both feet flat on the floor, hip width apart. Squeeze your gluteal muscles (a.k.a. your rear) and hold for five deep breaths. Release, and repeat up to ten times. Feel your fanny firm right up as you type about computer yoga in your status update.

Twitter Tummy Tightener

Take a deep breath in and with your exhale draw your lower belly toward your spine. At the very end of your exhale, engage your abdominal muscles just a little bit more, and hold your muscles firm for as long as it takes you to tweet this article!


Yoga for Arthritis

Arthritis is a condition defined by inflammation in one or more joints, coupled with stiffness, soreness and a limited range of motion. According to the Center for Disease Control, arthritis affects nearly 50 million Americans, and that amount is expected to rise. There are over 100 types of arthritis and the causes include but are not limited to obesity, lack of exercise, improper auto immune response, and the overuse of a misaligned joint.

However the painful condition has come about, the treatment and management of it is very important. Doctors recommend that arthritis sufferers get some moderate exercise and eat right to maintain a healthy weight.

Yoga, because it is a non-impact activity, is a very beneficial way to get some moderate exercise. Yoga poses strengthen the muscles surrounding the joints in a gentle way so the rate of progression of arthritis is slowed and moving becomes less painful. As a result, the symptoms of soreness and stiffness are more properly managed.

Read on to learn about a few basic guidelines to adhere to when practicing yoga with arthritis. Always remember to check with your doctor before embarking on a new type of exercise. In addition, speak with your instructor to learn about modifications you might find useful.


Yoga for School Teachers

Teachers are educators, leaders, pseudo parents, heroes, friends and mentors. Their jobs are often thankless, yet teachers are those amazing people that help shape the future of our world.

Being a teacher takes a tremendous amount of commitment, and commitment requires a tremendous amount of energy. Presenting concepts, math equations and scientific theories while continuing to be a positive influence in the classroom can be challenging for the tired and overworked educationalist.

Thankfully, the magic of yoga can come to the rescue to refresh, rejuvenate and inspire before burn out ensues.

Bank a second wind well before you might actually need it with these simple suggestions that can be practiced in the teacher’s lounge or in the classroom.


The Health Benefits of Yoga

It is hard to believe something so delightful and enjoyable has so many good benefits. Stretching, breathing and bending feels great, plus it alleviates many health issues naturally, without the use of modern medicine.

Yoga has been practiced as far back as 5,000 years for the purpose of attaining enlightenment. Today yoga is a widely popular way to reduce stress, increase flexibility and build strength, yet the cosmic element still exists. For some reason, when we practice yoga, we feel happy and content. It doesn’t need an explanation, just the mere enjoyment of rolling out the mat is enough to want to stick with it.

The following is a list of some of the greatest benefits a regular yoga practice provides, for all levels of abilities.


We do not have to be flexible to do yoga; we gain flexibility by doing yoga. With a consistent practice, those tight hamstrings lose their grip on our hips and, as a result, free up tension in our lower backs. A healthy lower back is an asset when we get older and yoga supports this.


Beginner’s Guide to Yogilates

In 1997, certified Pilates instructor Jonathan Urla combined yoga postures and Pilates exercises and named it Yogilates. Louise Solomon created her own blend of both and termed it Yogalates. Whatever you call it, hybrid classes like these are very popular in health clubs and studios across the country.

Yogilates and other hybrid yoga and Pilates workouts are designed for the purpose of gaining the benefits of core work from Pilates while mixing in the breath and flexibility training of yoga. Just as a yoga practice may not target all of the core muscles, a Pilates class may overlook certain stretches that promote a balanced and healthy body. Combining the two introduces a dynamic experience of connecting the breath with a new level of mind and body fitness.


Yoga for Runners Offers Proper Stretching

By Becky Striepe for Care2.com

It seems like running is the hip exercise lately! So many people that I know are lacing up and hitting the road to get in shape. Unfortunately, running can be tough on the body, but a good stretching routine can help balance out the impact from pounding the pavement.

Some exercisers like to stretch before and after a run. If you’re already stretching before you run, keep it up, but if that’s not part of your routine, there’s really no need to stretch before running. Walking for a few blocks before you pick up the pace should warm up your muscles just fine.

Proper stretching is just as important for your health as your workout, and because running is so high impact it’s a good idea to focus even more on stretches to help your body recover. When you run, you impact your hips, knees, calves, ankles, thighs, and feet, and it’s a good idea to give your upper body a good stretch after running, as well as hitting those problem areas. Here are some yoga-inspired stretches to help your body recover from running. (more…)

Stretching is Essential for Runners

To stretch or not to stretch, that really isn’t a valid question for the runner. Perhaps the runner can ask “When should I stretch?” or “How do I stretch?”  but, in my opinion, contemplating whether or not to stretch is a recipe for pain and injury.

The task of running is tremendous for the body. The heart works hard, the muscles work hard, the lungs get one of the best workouts possible during a run. While running is so great for a person’s health, it must be noted that all that work really stresses the body as well. After long runs, my muscles get very tight and sore, proving that they need some extra attention before you run on them again.

Stretching can help loosen up tight muscles and allow for more range of motion. Motion on loose muscle verses tight muscles seems to paint an obvious enough picture as to why runners should stretch. A well stretched and flexible runner has the potential to run faster with less effort or training verses the naughty, non-stretcher who knocks out several intense workouts in a week. That fact alone has inspired me to up my stretching game!


Practice a Stretching Regimen to Increase Flexibility and Reduce Injury

By Terri Hall for Care2.com

Surprising to many, research has yielded mixed findings regarding the health benefits of stretching and increasing flexibility. While there are questions regarding whether or not stretching increases athletic performance, there is general agreement that when done properly, stretching decreases the risk of activity-induced injury.

Flexibility is the range of motion (ROM) around a joint, while stretching is the activity we do to increase that range of motion. Joints have “ideal” ranges of motion which allow the body to move freely while maintaining stability. This ROM differs in each of us depending on the balance of our muscles due to factors such as over- or under-use of a muscle group and injury. So, for example, a cyclist will likely have much tighter hip flexors and hamstrings if they do not stretch adequately because of the repetitious use of the lower body. Likewise, a ballet dancer might have overstretched muscle and loose joints due to years of training from an early age. In either case, both joints that have limited or excessive ROM can contribute to injury due to the lack of stability in those joints. (more…)

Denise Austin’s Prescription for America to Get Energy

How many women do you know who aren’t tired? Work, kids, running a household and usually getting less than eight hours of sleep leaves most American women feeling like we drag our bodies around with us. We crave sleep like we crave chocolate, girls night out and five minutes alone. And of that list, chocolate’s usually the one craving we can quickly and easily satisfy.

Denise Austin, a renowned and beloved fitness expert, wants us all to have more energy, and she’s telling us how to do it in Get Energy! Empower Your Body, Love Your Life, a new book that released January 7, 2011. The book is filled with useful ideas to live a healthier, happier, more energetic life. But, it’s also filled with a lot of ideas that seem common sense on the surface that we tend to forget about.

For instance, good posture. Denise explains that it opens up your lungs and allows you to take deeper breaths. These deeper breaths introduce more oxygen to your body, and this gives you more energy. “If you’re slouched over, your lungs don’t have the capacity to take a good deep breath,” says Denise. “So that’s why sitting up nice and tall, suck in the gut, tighten up your tummy… zip up your abs… and that’s why you get a nice toned tummy.”

We had a chance to talk to Denise about Get Energy! Listen now as she explains the underestimated importance of circulation, how stretching can replace your morning coffee, why a 30-minute workout is just right, and the foods you need to fuel your day.

Continue reading to learn more and win a copy of Get Energy! (more…)