Tips for Daily Mindfulness

June 8, 2015

In the modernized world many of us presently live in, it can be difficult to stay grounded, mindful, and deliberate in our everyday lives. It can seem that there’s always another task to complete, another action to take that feels like it needs to come first before one’s own well-being.

As I’m sure many of us have experienced, this can lead to a loss of ability to match the fast pace we strive for. Taking a few moments to stay grounded and present – and therefore taking a moment for your own self care and health – can manifest a hugely positive result that can also serve as a time and energy saver.

Below are some ways that many find helpful in slowing down, “fueling” up, and going out into the world, and your life, refreshed, content, and calm.

1. Set aside time for your practice

 

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As I’m sure many yogis have experienced, setting aside a specific time for a home or studio practice can be a huge help! It’s all too easy to begin your week with the intention to set aside time for a class or home practice only to find yourself on Friday wondering where the week has gone.

As an observance of self care and mindfulness, try setting a specific day and time (or multiple days and times depending on your schedule) to spend some time on the mat. Whether it’s just a few moments on a Wednesday morning, or traveling to your local studio for a full class twice a week, having a time set specifically for your practice can help your body and mind keep with the intention of truly making it happen.

 

2. Honor your feelings

 

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It can be all too easy to dismiss a physical or mental feeling as unimportant or low priority during times busy with work, family and life in general!

Taking a moment to acknowledge, identify, and honor your feelings can be helpful not only to yourself, but in the energy and intentions you bring to the world around you and those in it.

Simply ask yourself, “Am I hungry? Thirsty? Would my body like a moment to sit and rest?” Then, take care of yourself as best you can! Sure, if you’re right in the middle of work, driving, or any number of things, that can be a bit difficult to act on, but try to do so a best you can, and as soon as possible.

 

3. Get grounded

 

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This can be utilized anytime, anywhere! Whether you’re on the Zafu, in the classroom, or on the go, feel your feet on the ground, the breath in your lungs, and the strength in your body.

If you’re looking for props to help with mindfulness and staying grounded, take a look at our mediation props and yoga mats today! Barefoot Yoga offers a variety of packages, including the Meditation Cushion Package, to an assortment of relaxing props like the classic Silk Eye Pillow and gorgeous Mandala Embroidered Zafu.

When it comes to the real-world props that can help you find your inner zen, we’ve got you covered.

 


5 Perfect Places for Outdoor Yoga This Summer

June 5, 2015

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As the summer starts to heat up, we’re all getting excited about taking our yoga practice out into the sunshine! Practicing in a natural environment can help to heighten your senses and refresh your mind and body, so why not give it a try? Here are some ideas for places to enjoy yoga outdoors…

 

  1. Your own backyard

Feeling a little hesitant about practicing out in public? Give outdoor yoga a trial run in the privacy of your own backyard! You’ll get a feel for the way that the grassy surface affects your balance, and enjoy the benefits of your natural surroundings, while having quick access to any forgotten necessities like your water bottle, an extra towel or sunglasses.

 

  1. The Beach

What could be more soothing than the background sound of the rolling surf? If you’re practicing on the beach, first of all make sure you remember the sunscreen! You’ll want to use either a yoga mat or large blanket, and focus mainly on grounded poses rather than flow, to help avoid getting sand everywhere. The beach is a great place to practice balancing poses, since it offers an extra challenge and really engages your lower leg and ankle muscles. Finally, remember to keep hydrated!

 
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  1. The Park

Whether it’s a tiny city park, a sprawling national forest, or somewhere in between, taking your practice out into the natural world can be a beautiful experience. When the sun is beating down, find a shady spot beneath a tree to save your energy and stay invigorated. If you can find a patch of smooth grass, it’s great to try ditching the mat and literally connecting to the earth with your hands and feet on the ground.

 

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  1. Your Local Museum

Many museums offer yoga classes, either for free or for a small fee. Some, like the Seattle Art Museum have their classes outside. While practicing at the SAM sculpture park, you can enjoy the beauty of nature while taking in the wonderful works of art all around you!

 

  1. Festivals

For a large-scale outdoor yoga experience, check out the yoga festival nearest you! In addition to practicing with some of the world’s great yoga instructors, you’ll be able to enjoy classes about mindfulness, guided meditations, and inspiring kirtan concerts.

 

Check out barefootyoga.com for a wide array of yoga products perfect for both indoors and out!

 


An Interview with Bay Area Yoga Instructor Nasa Mitchell on How She Came to Yoga and How it Changed Her Life

June 1, 2015

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Yoga teacher Nasa Mitchell

Nasa Mitchell (500 RYT) is a Yoga Alliance registered instructor based in California. She is a talented and beloved teacher (and yes, this is straight from her students!)  who has also been a valued Barefoot Yoga customer for years.

BY: What originally brought you to Yoga?

NM: Heritage and Life;

Where I am from, Yoga is about spirituality, mantras and chants. Back then as a child and an adult, I had no idea it was yoga.

As a mother of two sons, living in noisy, fast and busy lifestyle for years, instinctively everything in and out of me telling me to Just Be and Connect With Myself which is yoga.

 

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Practicing with some BFY signature blocks and straps!

 

BY: In your experience, how has Yoga affected your physical and mental being? How has Yoga changed your life?

NM: I am physically and mentally stronger by accepting where I am and who I am. Many of us suffer from perfectionism which does not exist. I am originally one of those people.

Through the practice of yoga I am okay with not being the perfect human being. I am kinder to my body when I am practicing asana practice, more forgiving to my judgmental thoughts and worries that do not feed me and people around me. I am back to “Stepping out of your comfort zone” is totally okay and it can be rewarding.

 

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BY: Is there anything in Yoga (poses, styles) that you would like to explore but haven’t yet?

NM: Yoga study is never ending and there is always something new.

Lately I am more drawn into mantras and pranayamas which prepare us to meditation and healing.

 

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BY: Do you have a favorite place to practice?

NM: As much as I love practicing yoga at our home where it is quiet and sacred, ([although] most of the time it is noisy and messy :-) ) I enjoy practicing yoga off the mat and out of my home by just living in everyday life at a store, in my car, out at my kids’ activities, with my students in the studio.

I believe yoga is in everything and everywhere if we allow it to be.

Want to connect with Nasa? Find her on Facebook here.

Looking for some props of your own to get started? Visit us at Barefoot Yoga today to view our full range of straps, blocks, mats, and more!