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What is Yin Yoga: Part II

What is Yin Yoga

The Forest When I was a kid my parents would occasionally take my sister and I camping or for hikes in the woods. I remember making up stories in my head about the various places we’d see; a clearing, many dead or dying trees, an overlook or valley. The stories would include fairies or elves or thieves. Creatures who made …

What is Yin Yoga: Part I

The first thing you should know about Yin is that it is a cool practice. Cool as in really happening but also cool as in temperature. In fact, much of the practice depends on the commitment the student has to not warming and lubricating the joints and tissues. When I first started practicing Yin I found this very frustrating. I …

Role of Pain

Mandy Ryle Yoga

I recently read an article about the role of pain in the popular style of yoga, Astanga, popularized by Pattabi Jois. This style of yoga is the grandfather of the Vinyasa that I teach, but the strict Astanga style often gets a bad rap because of it’s dogmatic rigidity and the frequency of injury among its practitioners. The author of …

Where the Magic Happens

Where the Magic Happens

My passion as a teacher of asana and yoga in general, is the breath. This has not changed in all of the years I’ve been teaching despite the many incarnations my style has taken. Maybe it comes from my 16 years spent as a professional musician and teacher of singing. I’ve loved the mechanics of breath and the usefulness of …

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Living Yoga…

In a culture that is obsessed with transformation I worry that living one’s yoga has become synonymous with some sort of necessary life fix.  I for one will continue to practice yoga in this New Year, and in subsequent New Years not because yoga teaches us that we need to be fixed, but because it teaches us that we are …

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Mistakes were made

We took risks, we knew we took them.  Things have come out against us.  We have no cause for complaint.  Robert Frost As I write this a key is laying on the table near me.  This key symbolizes a chance for me and the culmination of a great deal of hard work done and yet to be done.  When it …

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The Dark Side of Yoga

This post is a response to an article published in the NY Times Magazine, Jan 5,2012, How Yoga Can Wreck Your Body. I’ve been reading an important text about yoga called “Light on Yoga” by B.K.S. Iyengar.  This is one of those books that as a teacher of yoga you really feel like you “should” read.  It’s called the “Bible” …

New Grooves: Exploring Samskaras

Happy New Year Dear Yogis.  This is such an exciting time of year for me.  I love the symbolic renewal of a New Year, and all of the possibilities it suggests.  I think others must feel this way too since so many resolve to do something big and grand and so closely held.  A New Years resolution is like admitting …

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How to do Yoga with a fork in your hand

Some might call me crazy, but I think that the practice of yoga is essentially hedonistic.  For years when I practiced yoga I did it for the pay off at the end.  I suffered through the pain and mild boredom for the feeling of calm gratification I would achieve as I laid in savasana.  Slowly though my attitude began to …

Practice Worth

A mudra for reaffirming your worthiness

My intention for this month is to own my experiences on the mat and in all parts of my life.  This practice reminds you of your inherent worth.  I love to take Bhumisparsha mudra when I’m feeling invincible, a fleeting thing for sure.  It’s also nice when I am needing a little encouragement.  Try it out, it takes less than a minute: …