beginner yoga video

  • Fresh Vibes: Illuminate Your Backbends!

    backbends

    Backbends...

    I feel like either you love ‘em or hate ‘em.

    If you’re a backbending junkie, prepare to get high.

    If you consider backbends your nemeses...well, buckle up. They say there’s a thin line between love and hate. So maybe, just maybe, you’ll cross the line.

    • Don't Back Down with Gwen Lawrence This powerful online yoga flow is designed to build strength and stability in the back and core. In this online yoga class, you will challenge the breath and deepen your focus. Enjoy a deep hip-opener at the end to let go of any low back strain. (67 mins.)
    • Expand from Stability: Bow Shaped Balances with Stacey Rosenberg Filmed live at Yoga Tree Hayes, this alignment-based practice is loaded with stabilizing balancing poses and strengthening asymmetrical backbends. Explore atypical ways to find yourself in Ardha Chandrasana (Half Moon Pose) or Vasisthasana (Side Plank) and even Cobra. This practice is challenging and flows through many variations of familiar poses. You will build the stability and focus required for balance and cultivate the strength and opening to create the many variations of bow shaped backbends. Come out with more space to breath and perhaps a little taller. (59 mins.)
    • Open Heart: Yoga for Athletes Short Practice with Sage Rountree In this short, beginner yoga video (designed especially for athletes, but open to all!) you’ll focus on opening the chest and hips. Relax into both supported and active backbends as you address all areas of the chest and shoulders to find greater ease, expansion, and openness through your front body. (30 mins.)
    • Build a Backbend with Stacey Rosenberg Start with simple poses that bring awareness while opening both your back body and the front of your thighs. The sequence progresses by building strength in your middle and upper back and engaging your core to bring you into full wheel pose (urdhva dhanurasana) safely and with integrity. Filmed live at Yoga Tree Hayes, this online yoga video is great for people who already have a backbend practice or for those who want to strengthen their upper back and work toward fuller backbend expressions over time. (59 mins.)

     

    There's plenty more where that came from! For more backbending madness, head over to the YogaVibes studio.

    Image Courtesy of www.zainsaraswatijamal.com

  • How Much Do You Yin Your Yang? by Sigrid Matthews

    yin yoga

    If yoga is supposed to be a balancing or joining of opposites, a good question to pose (pun intended) is: How much of a strong practice do I need? How strong do I need to be? Of course, you can reverse the question: How much of a soft or surrendered practice do I need? How flexible do I need to be? It’s important to evaluate this every once in a while, especially if you’ve been feeling agitated, overwhelmed, stressed, achy, tired, or anxious.

    I recently had a mentoring meeting with a younger teacher who is really starting to take off. We spoke about how building a career (in anything) can lead us into a very masculine/yang place and we can forget the feminine aspect of our work and how we relate to others (this goes for both men and women).

    We get very good at making lists, setting appointments, and writing emails. She wondered why it might be harder to find the feminine and I said, “because it’s elusive, mysterious, and it calls for ‘being’ rather than ‘doing.’” The unconscious feminine aspect was coined by Jung as “anima” and the masculine unconscious as “animus.” Our yoga practice can help us cultivate the “being-ness” physically and we can let that carry over to our emotional and mental states.

    When we get quiet and tune into the feminine side we may get inner promptings, ideas, and encouragement to shift or change or take action. The male unconscious takes direction from the inner female and then executes those inner decisions outwardly in the world. When we only practice vigorous, active, and intense yoga, we can over-stimulate and lose sight and insight of the surrender and softer side of yoga.

    Remember Patanjali’s famous sutra 2.46: Sthira Sukam Asanam. Many teachers translate this to mean steady and sweet, steadfast and good space, balance of effort and surrender. And while we aim for this yin and yang dynamic in every pose and every practice, it may be helpful to pull back completely and devote ourselves to a completely soft, surrendered, and restorative practice.

    Above all, yoga philosophy always teaches us to release the victim and become self-reliant and recognize what might cause future suffering and make adjustments now to avoid pain later on. It’s empowering to practice in a soft, quiet way where you can navigate what’s going on in the body, mind, and heart. For example:

    • Learning simple poses that bring overall ease and better functioning of the healing and immune system.
    • Self-massage techniques to aid in detoxification and elimination.
    • Soothing breath work to encourage a meditative state and the rest and digest response of the parasympathetic nervous system.

    All of this helps us to remember that sometimes it’s okay to let go of the game plan and go with the flow, surrendering to what is right now from a place of strength and tranquility. Take some time exploring active/intentional surrender to create quiet confidence of inner knowing, and the radiance of a person who takes care and time for themselves.

    I bow to the light in you! Shanti.

    To tap into your yin-ness, try Sigrid's online yoga class: Focused Flow Yoga for Digestion, Detoxification, and Insomnia. This yin style restorative practice is wonderful after a hard work out or at the end of the day before bedtime. As a shorter, soothing online yoga sequence, this beginner yoga video combines deeper held yoga poses with some key self-acupressure points to balance the gall bladder, kidney, liver, and spleen meridians to restore harmony in the body. (25 mins.)

    yin yoga

    Image courtesy of www.offthebluemat.com

  • Fresh Vibes: Yoga Basics!

    yoga poses

    Back to the basics!

    If you’re a beginner yogi, here are some starting points to kickoff your journey.

    If you're a seasoned yogi, here some basic flows to build even more strength and intelligence in your practice.

    • Ashtanga Yoga Basics with Joan Hyman Learn the fundamentals of the Ashtanga Yoga system in a slow, safe, and supportive way. Learn the Sun Salutations and the basic standing postures that open up the series. This is a basic Ashtanga Yoga video designed for all levels and anyone interested in Ashtanga. The sequence is taught up to the seated poses and then moves into bridge pose to warm up the shoulders for shoulder stand at the wall, preparing for a simple pranayama to close. Add this sequence to your home practice and take it with you wherever you go! (52 mins.)
    • Yoga Basics: Everyday Class with Darcy Lyon Filmed live at Yoga Tree, this online yoga video is perfect for a morning routine, mid-day refresher or end of day soother. Beginning from the floor, move through a variety of hip openers, standing poses, twists and gentle back-bends. This is a well-rounded practice accessible to all, including yoga newbies, older yogis, or those whose bodies are more stiff. (33 mins.)
    • Ashtanga Yoga Basics: Sun Salutations + Standing Postures with Kino MacGregor This is the perfect place to learn the basics of the Ashtanga Yoga method. The Sun Salutations and standing postures form the fundamental postures and practice of all Ashtanga Yoga students. Kino will lead you through the postures with a focus on healthy alignment and coordination of breath with movement. The Ashtanga Yoga practice is built on three points, known in Sanskrit as the Tristana method. The postures, the breath and the focal point give your mind and body a specific set of instructions to train the body and calm the mind. Use this online yoga practice to build up your Ashtanga Yoga Basics. Be prepared to sweat! (32 mins.)
    • Yoga for Men: Beginners with Joan Hyman This instruction-heavy beginner yoga video is designed for men, but anyone can benefit from this slow-moving, simple flow. Learn the basics, target the hips and shoulders, and gain greater understanding of the language of standing poses. End with light stretching to create balance in the body and mind. (59 mins.)
    • Sun Salutations for Beginners with Allyn Cioban Modified for the beginner, these dynamic movements linked with breath are the essential basics you'll need to know for just about every yoga practice. Master this sequence and you will be prepared to enter any studios' level 1 yoga class. This online yoga class also stands alone, rooted in the 5,000 year old traditions of yoga. You may choose to practice it at home for a wonderful daily dose of yoga asana and pranayama! (42 mins.)

     

  • Strike A Pose: Marichyasana C with Kino MacGregor

    ashtanga yoga

    Named after the sage Marichi (meaning ray of light), this deep, binding hellofa twist arises in the Primary Series of the Ashtanga Yoga method.

    Sure, it looks simple enough.

    But don’t be fooled.

    Marichyasana C poses a BIG challenge. Especially for yoga newbies.

    It’s a shining example of the age-old saying: The greater the challenge, the greater the reward.

    Because this asana overfloweth with rewards.

    Marichyasana C Benefits:

    • cleansing + purifying
    • aids digestion (the twisting action promotes elimination to restore digestive power)
    • opens up the shoulders
    • relieves mild backache and hip discomfort
    • strengthens and stretches the spine
    • tones the waist
    • stimulates and energizes
    • enhances the flow of prana throughout the abdomen, nourishing and massaging the pancreas, kidneys, stomach, small intestines, liver, and gallbladder
    • stretches the intercostals (muscles between the ribs) enhancing the flow of breath in the ribs
    • relieves menstruation discomforts

    To revel in the rewards of this twist, join Ashtanga Yoga instructor Kino MacGregor for a quick online yoga demo breaking down the technical and anatomical foundations of Marichyasana C in the Ashtanga Yoga Primary Series. This free online yoga video features accessible modifications and the use of yoga towel as a prop to facilitate the bind. So, even if you’re a total beginner, you’ll find a good place to work this twist after tuning into Kino's beginner yoga video.

    Oh and some words of warning: 

    Don’t fight your way into it. This is NOT a pose for the overly zealous.

    Move patiently and one day it will come.

    Enjoy the journey!

    marichyasana c

    Image Credit: Marichyasana C by Peters.pipers on Flickr

  • Class Review: Yoga for Runners with Sage Rountree

    The Deets.

    • Filming Location: Carrboro Yoga Company, Carrboro, NC
    • Style: Vinyasa Yoga
    • Intensity: Level 1 = All-levels Beginner Yoga Video
    • Focus: Yoga for Athletes
    • Average Rating: 5/5

    yoga for athletes

    On the teacher.

    Sage Rountree is an endurance sports coach, a highly experienced teacher, and a continuing student of physiology. Her popular yoga classes and workshops for athletes draw students ranging from recreational athletes to Ironman triathletes, Olympians, NBA and NFL players, and NCAA players and coaches, including UNC men's basketball and football. To learn new ways to sharpen, focus, and relax for peak performance, take her online yoga classes!

    On the class.

    After a tough run, this online yoga sequence is the ultimate cool down.

    Specially designed for runners (but appropriate for athletes and all!), this accessible online yoga class offers a post-workout practice to build balance, core strength, and hip flexibility. Don’t be fooled by its beginner-friendly status. This hour-long practice will present a challenge!

    What people are saying.

    • "100% fantastic!"

    yoga for athletes

    For more of Sage’s athletically-focused yoga flows, check out her growing collection of online yoga videos on YogaVibes.

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