Author: Shelley Lowther

Be the Change

Mahatma Gandhi once said, “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”  People often look outside of themselves for answers to why they are unhappy or are not reaching their goals, and this simple sentiment reminds us that only we are responsible for ourselves.  If we are looking for change, we must understand that change comes from within. October 2nd would be Gandhi’s 241st birthday.  The word Gandhi itself means “Great Soul,” and his birthday seems an appropriate time to honor his vision of the powerful concept of self-change.

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Letting Go

A student recently told me how much yoga has changed her life. She confided that she not only feels physically better, but that she seemed to be handling so many things in her life in a calmer, more efficient manner. She told me that she was able to just let go of so many of the things that usually drove her crazy – that she would close her eyes, breathe, and just let them go.

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The Four Locks & Keys

It is difficult to maintain a regular yoga practice, but even more challenging is taking that practice off the mat and into our daily lives.  How do we do it?  How can we live our yoga? According to Patanjali, a 5th century yogic sage credited with penning the Yoga Sutras, one way we can take our yoga off the mat is through the path to enlightenment.  The word sutra literally means thread, and Patanjali’s guidebook to enlightenment is divided into four portions:  the portion on contemplation, the portion on practice, the portion on accomplishments and the portion on absoluteness.  One of my favorite aphorisms, Sutra 1.33, is known as the Four Locks and Keys.

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Mother Earth

As I look out at a room of pregnant women with their beautiful round bellies, I understand where the concept of Mother Earth was born.  The roundness of the belly, reminiscent of the Earth herself, creates a cocoon within the mother’s body and provides a life-sustaining environment for the baby.  As Mother Earth sustains all life, so do expectant mothers, albeit on a much smaller scale. Yoga can benefit us at all stages of our lives, but there is a special connection that can happen when a mother-to-be practices yoga.  The physical benefits are numerous and obvious. 

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  It is perhaps the most common question a new yoga student has, but may never ask:  “What does Namaste mean and why do people say it in yoga class?” “Nama” means “bow,” “as” means “I,” and “te” means “you,” so, literally, Namaste means “I bow to you.” 

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Real Dudes Do Yoga

Despite reading about the astounding benefits of yoga, many guys are still sitting on the proverbial yoga fence.  I mean, do real dudes do yoga?  Isn’t yoga easy, and just for chicks?  The truth is, yoga can be challenging, difficult and cause you to break into a sweat.  And if you’re brave enough to break out of the box and try a class, it’s not just for girls. Most of the ancient yogis were men.  Yoga has really only opened up to women in the last half of the twentieth century, although most studios in the US today are filled with women.  Yoga is a healthy activity that you can enjoy with your wife or girlfriend. 

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De-Stress for Success

We all have varying degrees of stress in our lives. Regardless of the cause or type, stress can often be an impediment to our general wellness and success.  It can cause depression, anxiety and other serious health issues. We all want to reduce our stress, and we’ve all heard that yoga can help. But how?

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The Yoga Fear Factor

Trying something new can be intimidating.  Going to a yoga class for the first time, where you may be asked to contort yourself into some kind of twisted pretzel can be down right terrifying.  “You want me to do WHAT????” Enter the yoga fear factor.

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Giving Children Balance Through Yoga

You feed your kids a balanced diet, but do you teach them balance in other aspects of their lives?  Have you considered yoga as a way to achieve this? I wish that I had known about yoga when I was a child.  I vaguely remember a very intense moment in first or second grade when I stabbed my math book with a pencil because I did not know how to channel my frustration.  I wish that I’d known then what I know now.

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october, 2021

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