Timothy McCall, MD, guest blogger How does yoga work? Why is a system that has been used for more than 5,000 years still flourishing? Where do science and spirituality meet? In this article, medical doctor and yoga practitioner Timothy McCall explains how the millenia-old practice of yoga creates sustainable positive change. Although medical knowledge is [...]
What is it about summer and books? Like kale and quinoa, they just go together. Dreamy weather plus slowing down equals perfect conditions for lazy afternoons spent reading on a beach or by a lake, or lounging in a favorite chair while the sun casts leafy shadows across the room. Ahhh. To accompany you along [...]
An excerpt from the guide “Dynamic Language and Heart Opening Themes” on Danny Arguetty’s website: Nourish Your Light. When we, as teachers, use varied language, creative words, and clear instructions, there is a more complete quality to the practice at hand. Our language supports students in remaining more present to their own internal experience while [...]
Samantha Cullen, guest blogger So you’ve fallen for someone. In the brief time you’ve been placed in his presence everything seems to glow. He’s this other version of yourself and he somehow amplifies what makes being alive so exciting. The thing is, this someone is not yours to have. So what to do when this [...]
With the current buzz around yoga injuries, it’s a good time to revisit the concept of the edge, a core component of Kripalu Yoga. The edge is that precise place in a posture where the body finds its optimal stretch and the mind is fully present. Pushing too far brings strain to the body and [...]
How does yoga impact our lives? Its purpose, benefits, and significance tend to evolve as our practice changes and as we grow, age, and learn. We asked nine yogis from different decades of life what yoga means to them. 30s: Kathryn Budig, teacher of a weekly online class at yogaglo.com and on faculty at YogaWorks [...]
In this piece, Stephen Cope, Director of Kripalu’s Institute for Extraordinary Living, investigates how and why practices like yoga and meditation create a sense of well-being and ease.
Recently, I was talking on the phone with my friend Sandy, who had just gone through an unexpected relationship meltdown. Her partner, Tim, she said, had suddenly developed “intimacy issues” and had fled the relationship “like a rat off a sinking ship.”
For an hour or so, we talked about the difficulties of her situation. She expressed her sense of disorientation and sadness. Toward the end, she said something interesting: “Thank God I have my yoga practice.” I could feel the gratitude in her voice. “It’s a little island of sanity. Like coming home. That hour between 7:00 and 8:00 a.m. has become the most important hour of my day.”
Amy Weintraub, MFA, E-RYT 500, is the author of the books Yoga for Depression and Yoga Skills for Therapists, and creator of the award-winning DVD series LifeForce Yoga to Beat the Blues. Founder of the LifeForce Yoga® Healing Institute, she offers professional trainings in LifeForce Yoga for Mood Management, and speaks at medical and psychological conferences internationally. www.yogafordepression.com
Q Describe what you do in 15 words or less.
A I inspire others to use yoga practices to remove whatever blocks them from knowing their true nature.
Q Tell us about a turning point in your life.
A I came to my first yoga teacher training at Kripalu in 1992 to deepen my own sadhana. I left with a passion to share with others the practice that had literally saved my life and had slowly helped me live a life free of medication for depression.
Q What do you love about teaching?
Yoga and Ayurveda are two “sister” practices that originated in India thousands of years ago. Now, a lot of us are familiar with yoga, and have experienced firsthand—through postures, breathwork, and self-inquiry—its profound benefits. Yet many of us are not as familiar with Ayurveda. We might have heard about it in conjunction with yoga, but are not quite sure how, exactly. In her R&R retreat workshop Yoga and Ayurveda, Senior Kripalu Yoga teacher Jurian Hughes points out that yoga means union in Sanskrit, and a definition of Ayurveda is the wisdom of life. Explored together, these complementary practices can offer us transformative tools that foster greater health and vitality. And as Jurian also explains, integrating Ayurvedic principles into your yoga practice can create a deeper, richer experience on the mat that you can take with you off the mat as well.
“Ayurveda isn’t a one-size-fits-all philosophy,” Jurian says. “We’re constantly in flux throughout the day: our energy level and our mood, for example, are different first thing in the morning than they are at noon.” Ayurveda, then, is a personalized, intuitive health philosophy. According to Ayurvedic principles, each of us has a unique constitution governed by our physical and emotional makeup, as well as our lifestyle—the foods we eat, what time we go to sleep. These constitutions are called doshas, and they are linked to the elements. The doshas are vata (air and ether), pitta (fire and water), and kapha (earth and water).