Yoga and Art: A Natural Partnership

February 28, 2014

If you’re in the Bay Area and feeling the need for a little extra culture this weekend, or better yet, the need for culture and yoga, you’re in luck! Head down to the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco and check out their new exhibit Yoga: The Art of Transformation. This show covers centuries of yoga practice and philosophy from the 2nd to the 20th centuries. The collection comes from 25 museums and private collectors from U.S., Europe and India. It features artwork, sculptures, print and film among its many highlights.

This could probably go unsaid, but I highly recommend hopping on a train, plane, or automobile (preferably a bike or a bus though) and checking it out. It’s amazing to see how relevant yoga has become in the modern hustle and bustle of our society today, and the revered place it has retained in our culture. It is touted as the “world’s first major art exhibition about yoga”, and I think that says it all.

Yoga: The Art of Transformation opens February 21st and runs until May 25th.

Yoga: The Art of Transformation

To purchase yoga supplies for your own transformation, visit www.barefootyoga.com!


Lauren’s Pick of the Week:
Men’s Practice Tank by PrAna

February 27, 2014

My pick of the week is the men’s Throttle Tank by PrAna. More than just your basic workout tank, this functional top is also fashionable and eco-friendly. The Throttle Tank’s organic cotton and poly blend will keep you centered and cool, while the variable-width horizontal stripes make this a stylish choice for the yoga studio or gym.

Throttle Tank by PrAnaThrottle Tank by PrAna

Visit www.barefootyoga.com for our full selection of men’s yoga clothing, including new Spring clothing from PrAna!


OMgirl’s Spring Collection Has Arrived!

February 26, 2014

OMgirl’s Spring 2014 clothing collection has arrived, and is available to browse and buy now! Check out this selection of gorgeous new OMgirl clothing for your spring wardrobe:

For more new OMgirl yoga tops and yoga pants, as well as yoga mats, props and accessories, visit us at www.barefootyoga.com!


5 Ways to Cut Your Stress Down to Size

February 25, 2014

Feeling like you’ve been having “one of those days” since you stepped into the office Monday morning? Can’t seem to catch up with that to-do list? Check out the tips below to get that much needed dose of R&R.

 1.      Deep breathing. It’s known that taking in a few slow, deep breaths through the nose and out through the mouth delivers a calming message to your body and nervous system, curbing anxiety and slowing down heart rate. 

Breathe

 2.      Sleep. Ideally, we should all be getting 7-9 hours of sleep per night, but that isn’t always doable. So instead, my advice is simply to get as much sleep as possible. Stop checking the time, turn the light out and relax. If you’re unable to fall asleep after a half hour or so, make a cup of tea, take a bath, or read a book. Eventually, your body will relax enough to send you off to dreamland. Until then, don’t let not getting enough sleep be what’s keeping you up at night.

Sleep

 3.      Pay attention to yourself, not your stress-induced habits. It’s been a tough day, and you just got into a fight with your significant other or tanked that presentation you’ve been working on for weeks. Now what? Stop and take a breath. When under duress, it becomes incredibly easy to fall back onto self-destructive habits and turn to unhealthy ways of dealing with stress. So just take a moment, and stop. Ask yourself questions like, “If I was content and peaceful right now, would I want this?” and “How will I feel after I eat this piece of cake I’m not hungry for?” If the answers to those questions are “no”, and “bad”, then stop. Take that deep breath and know that your true satisfaction is going to lie in understanding why you’re feeling like indulging in that old pattern of behavior and instead finding the real solution to the problem you’re dealing with.

Stress

 4.      Don’t block the stress. Often when we’re stressed it’s so automatic to go to a place of trying to push the stress away, which never works. I was once told that our feelings are like the ocean; they rise to the top so that they can evaporate and be let go of. I believe it, and I think one of the best things you can do for yourself is simply let yourself feel whatever you need to. Let all that stress and upset in, assess whether there’s a reasonable solution to it (or if you just have to make peace with not having a solution for the time being), and then let it all go.

Meditate

 5.      Yoga! Last but certainly not least, is yoga! Yoga has proven health benefits, including reduced stress, improved physical fitness, and natural management of high blood pressure, anxiety, insomnia, chronic pain, and heart disease. Even setting aside just 10 or 15 minutes to do a few relaxing poses, such as child’s pose or corpse pose can help bring you back to a space of peace and clarity. So remember yogis, don’t sweat the small stuff! Let it go and come back to your peaceful, loving center.

Peace

 

Visit www.barefootyoga.com for yoga and meditation supplies, including zafu meditation cushions and soothing silk eye pillows.


Grace’s Pick of the Week:
Katarina Top by PrAna

February 21, 2014

The Katarina Top by PrAna is made of eco-conscious hemp and cotton with a touch of spandex. Its contoured shape makes for a perfect fit. I especially love the longer back hem. This helps with coverage while doing forward bends!

Katarina Top by PrAnaKatarina Top by PrAna

Check out all of our new PrAna yoga clothing at www.barefootyoga.com!


Lavender in Ayurveda

February 20, 2014

LavenderThe healing properties of lavender have been know to practitioners of Ayurveda for centuries. Especially as an essential oil, it is extremely versatile and has many uses. Here are just a few of lavender’s benefits to both mind and body:

Strengthens the Immune System: Lavender offers a gentle boost to the immune system if you’re starting to feel run-down. The essential oil can be added to a humidifier or applied to the chest to help with respiratory ailments. Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, it can also be infused it into a massage oil for sore muscles.

Aids Sleep and Relaxation: One of the earliest-known beneficial qualities of Lavender is its natural anti-depressant effect. Simply smelling the fragrance of lavender — whether as an essential oil applied to the body, as a bath additive, or diffused into the air — can help to calm the mind and lift the spirits.

Helps Digestion: A few drops of lavender essential oil applied to the abdomen can offer relief from bloating and indigestion.

Soothes Headaches: Lavender has also been widely used in the treatment of headaches. Just open a bottle of lavender oil and inhale its scent for a few moments to relieve a headache. You can also apply it to the temples. Or, for the easiest treatment of all, try relaxing with a lavender scented eye pillow.

 


Yoga and the Seattle Seahawks

February 19, 2014

The Surprising Connection You Might Not Know About!

Russell Wilson July 29, 2013 Photographed by Peter yang

Source: espn.go.com

When I say the word yoga, what does it make you think of? Words that come to my mind are relaxation, energy, and maybe that I really should pick up that new mat I’ve been in desperate need of. A word that generally doesn’t come to mind is football, but after my discovery of this article, detailing the yoga practice of the Seattle Seahawks, that’s changed. With the aggressiveness and intensity football requires, I had never considered that legends like Russell Wilson (pictured above) and Marshawn Lynch need some help getting calm and centered just like the rest of us. But they do, and now I regard football with a somewhat different perspective thinking about them at the Renton training camp site doing chaturangas and Vinyasa flow sequences. Could part of why we brought home that Lombardi trophy be because we played with a good dose of yoga mixed in? I don’t know for sure, but I think the odds are pretty darn good.

Want to know more about the Seahawk yogis? Check out the links below!

And whether you’re limbering up for your health and well-being, or getting in shape for the gridiron, visit www.barefootyoga.com for all your yoga supply needs!


Circle Practice

February 18, 2014

Circle Practice

You may have been to some studios where yogis and yoginis practice in a circle. Traditionally, the teacher is at the ‘head’ of the class and the students look to the teacher. The idea of practicing in a circle is not to put the teacher up on a pedestal to be idolized and exalted. The teacher is there to keep you safe and guide you in your practice.  One should look to oneself for the ultimate teacher and focus inward into what our bodies are telling us. Or alternatively, to the other students who are ‘reflecting’ your practice. We have to be smart and kind to our body, mind and spirit.

For yoga mats and props to help with your own yoga journey, visit www.barefootyoga.com!