Barefoot Yoga’s Inspiring Teacher of the Month:
Michelle Kronenberg

February 11, 2014

Michelle Kronenberg

Our yoga teacher of the month is Michelle Kronenberg.

I was so fortunate to meet Michelle back in 1996, while breakfasting at the home of Nagaratna after practicing yoga with Sri K. Pattabhi Jois in Mysore India.  What was most apparent when I met her was her sense of humor.  She was hilarious.  A New Yorker living in LA, and deeply immersed in a yogic journey of discovery.  She was completely in touch with all the humorous elements of her upbringing and her new-aged pursuits, and made fun of herself better than anyone else.  As I got to know Michelle a little better, her dedication to the practice of yoga and meditation was inspiring, as were the many profound insights she had to share.

Almost 20 years later, Michelle is a premier yoga teacher in Malibu, California.  Her passion and commitment to yoga are “the real thing.”  “This is what I do, this is my life,” she says.

Michelle brings a deep and diverse range of knowledge and experience, mixed with lightness and joy – to her classes.  Michelle has an Ivy League education of yoga training and it shows in her teaching.  She lived in India for a year and studied with Pattabhi Jois, the founder of the Ashtanga Vinyasa system of yoga. In Pune, India, she also studied with B.K.S. Iyengar, the creator of the Iyengar system of yoga. Chuck Miller, Maty Ezraty, Erich Schiffman, Lisa Walford and Guru Singh are more notable teachers from whom she has learned. Most recently she spent a month in Italy studying with Donna Holleman, an Iyengar-influenced teacher who has created her own system.

Her classes can be strong and yet incredibly precise. She never teaches the same sequence. “I teach for the moment,” she explains. “I want my students to come away from my class more aware and more centered, sharper and clearer,” she says. Her classes are laced with humor, “just so we don’t get too serious” during the practice.

“I use my practice to sharpen my mind and there is a freedom that comes from that,” she says. “It gives me respite from the unending chatter of the mind. That is what I share in my teaching and that is what I hope people leave my classes with. I hope they take that philosophy off the mat into their lives.”

“My life has been devoted to the path of self-discovery and yoga on so many levels.” She admits that it is not always an easy path, “but it is an amazing reflection for me to see myself and where I am in my life. In order to maintain my centeredness and bring myself back to a place of openness and self love, I use my sitting practice.”

As for her teaching, she notes, “I love to teach. I love the detail. I love seeing people come into their bodies and wake up. As a teacher you can see people start to breathe and feel truly alive. For me, the studying, practicing and teaching of yoga awakens a sense of presence, and the feeling of being present encourages my heart to soften and open,” she says. “When I live from my heart, I feel greater love and compassion for myself and others. My hope is that my students feel this as well.”

Michelle Kronenberg’s yoga schedule.


Lauren’s Pick of the Week:
Diamond Jacquard Yoga Mat Bags

February 6, 2014

My pick of the week is our Diamond Jacquard Yoga Mat Bag. These unique Indian patterned bags are as durable as they are beautiful! Like all of our standard sized yoga mat bags, they are big enough to fit most any yoga mat, with room to spare for a towel, eye pillow, and strap. The Diamond Jacquard Bag is available in either the classic top-loading style or the side-zip duffel style.

Diamond Jacquard Yoga Mat Bag

Visit www.barefootyoga.com to view our complete selection of yoga mat bags, as well as a vast array of other yoga supplies!


Top 6 Ways to Finally Keep that New Year’s Fitness Resolution

February 5, 2014

1. I think you know where I’m going to start with this: Yoga! Integrating yoga and meditation into your New Year’s fitness regime helps in bringing the peace of mind that you can achieve your goals. Even 15 minutes in the morning before a whirlwind Monday can ground and center you for the day ahead.

2. Forgive yourself. Saying it is not as simple as doing it, but forgive yourself. Didn’t make it to that early hot yoga class? Ate a brownie for lunch instead of some healthy fruits and veggies? Don’t sweat it. Learning to take it easy on yourself and enjoying the less healthy stuff in moderation will help you to build the self love and confidence to make those healthier choices because you know you’re worth it.

3. Have fun! Just because you’re trying to be healthier this year (aren’t we all?) doesn’t mean life needs to be stricter or less exciting; in fact, getting exercise, eating well and feeling great should make life more exciting! Pull out your mat and do some sun salutations in the park on the way home from work, take a spontaneous weekend getaway with your girlfriends to that B&B you’ve been dying to go to! Loving the fun and spontaneity of life will make you feel capable of anything, whether it’s going on that getaway or finally getting up for that Ashtanga class.

4. Make your resolution a natural part of daily life. Often New Year’s resolutions fall by the wayside because they aren’t a sustainable part of our daily lives. The key to making them sustainable is naturally integrating them into your life. Find a fitness regime that works for you-something you’ll enjoy and something that isn’t going to add a stressful aspect to your life (yoga anyone?)

5. Want to do it. To me, one of the single most important elements of a successful New Year’s resolution is the drive to do it. If you don’t want to do something, why do it? Every person has different kinds of systems and routines that work for them and finding yours will feel amazing and empowering.

6. You’re not alone. Everyone wants to treat their bodies well and feel great, and for some of us that’s not an easy step to take at first. Remember that you’re not the only one!


Grace’s Pick of the Week
Barefoot Yoga Lotus Zafu

January 31, 2014

My pick of the week is the Barefoot Yoga Lotus Zafu in orange and blue. The lotus symbolizes new beginnings, purity and beauty. The blue lotus in Buddhism represents control of the spirit over one’s material senses. It also symbolizes wisdom and knowledge. Orange symbolizes joy and creativity. There is so much about this zafu that just speaks to me. It evokes the image of monks in their orange robes chanting in a monastery, and the sound of the prayer wheels turning, the smell of incense in the air. The zafu itself would help with your posture in a cross-legged meditation position. It aligns your spine, opening your hips for better breath control.

Barefoot Yoga Lotus Zafu

Check out our complete selection of zafus and other yoga props at www.barefootyoga.com!


Horse Stance

January 28, 2014

Horse Stance

In honor of the Year of the Horse, let’s review the horse stance. Stand with your legs wide apart, feet turned out at a diagonal, and bend your knees. Make sure your knees are tracking over your second toes. Hold your hands at your heart in prayer and keep your back straight and vertical. Keep your pelvis tucked under, making sure it is not sticking out behind you. If your hands are out at your side in ‘cactus’ position, then this pose is sometimes known as Moonflower or Goddess pose. Try lifting your toes, then set them down and lift your heels, alternating between them for a few breaths. This is a great grounding yoga pose.

Horse Stance


Grace’s Pick of the Week:
Sari Pattern Yoga Mat Bags

January 24, 2014

Grace’s Barefoot Yoga product Pick of the Week is our Sari Pattern Yoga Mat Bags: “The Sari Pattern yoga bags come in a variety of beautiful patterns. It has a convenient pocket on the front for small items and a wide shoulder strap for comfort. It is reinforced with a cotton layer on the inside. All Sari Pattern bags are top-loading with draw string closures.”

Sari Pattern Yoga Mat Bags

To browse our wide variety of unique yoga mat bags, visit www.barefootyoga.com!


Barefoot Yoga Hybrid Mat in February 2014 Yoga Journal

January 21, 2014

Yoga Journal - February 2014Barefoot Yoga’s Hybrid Eco Mat was photographed for Yoga Journal’s February 2014 issue, on newsstands now!

Our Hybrid Mats are a great low-cost, eco-friendly alternative to the usual PVC mat. They’re made without any heavy metals or other toxins, and offer a great grip for your practice, at an affordable price!

Visit www.barefootyoga.com to view our complete selection of eco-friendly yoga mats, and keep an eye out for our products in future issues of Yoga Journal!

Barefoot Yoga Hybrid Eco Mat


Grace’s Pick of the Week:
OMgirl Padma Pant

January 16, 2014

Grace’s Pick of the Week is the Padma Pant by OMgirl: “The Padma Pants are easy and comfortable. This 100% cotton vintage loop back fleece pants keep you warm and cozy for those chilly nights. Raw hems allow you to cut the pants to any length for a perfect fit!”

OMgirl Padma Pant

Visit www.barefootyoga.com to browse and buy from our selection of OMgirl yoga clothing!