Tag Archives: Health

Is your Yoga teacher for real?!

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As many people have probably already read, the New  York Times published an article about the dangers of Yoga called How Yoga can wreck your body. Now, when I read this I was quite honestly upset because in the few months that I have been seriously trying to embrace all aspects of Yoga, I have seen a vast improvement in my mood, flexibility and over all feeling of well-being. But I also have an advantage over some people who might be trying Yoga for the first time as their first serious work out plan. I have been a dancer and I still consider myself an athlete. I was a pole vaulter in high school and college. This even made me become very away of my body placement and allowed me to learn and LISTEN to what my body was telling me. After all if my arm placements was wrong or if I was a half second off on an approach things could have gone horribly wrong.

But then I started thinking about people like my mother who are looking to get into shape and think that a lower level Yoga class could be the way for them to start stretching and getting their bodies going. People like my mother may not realize they are going to far too fast. They might not pick  up on certain sensations or feeling their body is sending that are clear warning signs for injury. And many of today’s Yoga instructors for large Gym chains (if they are not volunteering from outside studios) may not have the training or the desire to help all levels of students. Yoga is not a one sized fits all kind of thing; just like many people would not get up and say I am going to learn how to Pole vault today. But America has made it so main stream and lost the actual teaching and theories behind why they do the poses or the importance of breathing and I feel that is why we see a spike in Yoga related injury.

Today (when I was looking around the internet clearly not studying like I should have been doing) I came across another article that I think would be a good read for Yogis at ALL levels who are not teaching themselves. The Huffington post published an article called 5 ways to tell if your Yoga teacher has a clue. It provided clear warning signs that your instructor has no idea what they are talking about. In this type of environment a new Yoga practitioner is the most at risk to injure themselves. So please share this article with friends neighbors or anyone you know who is interested in taking up Yoga. For example, This video really says it all; you know something is up if this girl is teaching your class:

Now if you are more advanced you can still injure your self but again its like any sport you take up. Remember to listen to what your body is telling you and don’t fight into a pose. Accept where your body is in that moment of your practice and don’t fight it.

I also want to say that there are many great yoga teachers out there who amazing and I have encountered some at large gyms that were great. But the fact is, sometimes you need to really question your teacher and if they are a true Yoga teacher they will love your questions about the practice and love to teach you modifications etc.

Have a great weekend!

-Jess

Lavender- A natural way to help relax

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Even in my first semester of pharmacy school, we were starting to learn about the benefits of natural products as well as the traditional pills you are used to getting from your pharmacist. This is exactly the kind of education I was looking to get and one of the main reasons I wanted to go this school (there is a full herb garden out side…)

Anyway as I head back to school in a few days, I want to find ways to help keep  my stress down. Obviously the  Yoga is going to be a HUGE help but sometimes with three exams, work and internships I need some help getting to sleep. We learned that Lavender contains a compound that acts in the same way Xanax would (obviously not as intensely but a similar smaller effect). Here are some other benefits that I found on organicfacts.net:

Nervous System: Lavender essential oil has a calming scent which makes it an excellent tonic for the nerves. Therefore, it helps in treating migraines, headaches, anxiety, depression, nervous tension and emotional stress. The refreshing aroma removes nervous exhaustion and restlessness and increases mental activity.

Sleep: Lavender essential oil induces sleep and hence it is often recommended for insomnia.

Pain Relief: Lavender essential oil is also an excellent remedy for various types of pains including those caused by sore muscles, tense muscles, muscular aches, rheumatism, sprains, backache and lumbago. A regular massage with lavender oil provides relief from pain in the joints.

Urine Flow: Lavender essential oil is good for urinary disorders as it stimulates urine production. It helps in restoring hormonal balance and reduces cystitis or inflammation of the urinary bladder. It also reduces any associated cramps.

Respiratory Disorders: Lavender oil is extensively used for various respiratory problems including throat infections, flu, cough, cold, asthma, sinus congestion, bronchitis, whooping cough, laryngitis, and tonsillitis. The oil is either used in the form of vapor or applied on the skin of neck, chest and back. It is also added in many vaporizers and inhalers used for cold and coughs.

Hair Care: Lavender essential oil is useful for the hair care as it can be very effective on lice and lice eggs or nits.

Blood Circulation: Lavender essential oil is also good for improving blood circulation in the body. It also lowers blood pressure and is used for hypertension.

Digestion: Lavender oil is useful for digestion as it increases the mobility of the intestine. The oil also stimulates the production of gastric juices and bile and thus aids in treating indigestion, stomach pain, colic, flatulence, vomiting and diarrhea.

Immunity: Regular use of lavender essential oil provides resistance to diseases.

Skin Care: The health benefits of lavender oil for the skin can be attributed to its antiseptic and antifungal properties. It is used to treat various skin disorders such as acne, wrinkles, psoriasis, and other inflammations. It heals wounds, cuts, burns, and sunburns rapidly as it aids in the formation of scar tissues. Lavender oil is added to chamomile to treat eczema.

Check out the link on the side for info about other organic products as well!

 

 

Chakra test- Are you balanced and open?

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I know I started taking Yoga classes because I felt lost and needed something to keep me on track health wise and spiritually. I wondered into a class one Monday at my studio in VA and was surprised to find out that it was a Chakra class.

Now I knew that being 25, moving to a new town and starting a new program in school I was completely unbalanced and just a total mess physically and spiritually. Like most of us i didn’t know how to go about fixing it. This classes opened my eyes to a possibly fix to the unbalanced body and spirit i was living with.

There are 7 major Chakras which are junction points between the consciousness and the body, located on the body’s axis. The word Chakra  is derived from the Sanskrit word for wheel and the Chakras are thought to be force centers or whirls of energy radiating from certain points on the physical body. It is thought that every organ and gland in the body is connected to a specific Chakra and they were the basis for many different parts of eastern medicine. The emotions are also connected to specific Chakras.

When all the Chakras are “open” they are considered to be working well together and in harmony with the spirit. When one is under active others become over active to compensate and then you feel an unbalance and discomfort.

So naturally I started thinking that most of Chakras were out of whack somehow. I was able to find this online test (I don’t know exactly how accurate it would be but it seemed to get me pretty good) and I wanted to share it with you guys too!

Take this free chakra test to find out how open each of your seven chakras is.

After you take the test and figure out where you stand with your Chakra’s it is best to try to open them from the root Chakra (the bottom) up. So check back with me for ways to balance each Chakra. I will try to do one a day for the next few days but I can’t promise 🙂

Namaste!