• Yoga for Anxiety: How to Overcome Anxiety with Yoga

    “Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.” —Thich Nhat Hanh

    Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older. If you are one of those people, you know how difficult it can be to live with anxiety. Thankfully, there is a lot of help available, including yoga. In this blog post, we will discuss how yoga can be used to overcome anxiety. We will also provide a 20 minute practice you can do to ease your anxiety.

    What is anxiety and what are the symptoms?

    Anxiety is a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease. It can be mild or severe. People with anxiety may feel restless, have trouble sleeping, and feel like they’re “on edge.”

    Some people with anxiety disorders may avoid certain situations out of fear. Others may experience physical symptoms such as a racing heart, sweating, or dizziness.

    There are different types of anxiety disorders, including:

    – Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)

    – Panic disorder

    – Social anxiety disorder

    – Specific phobias

    – Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)

    Anxiety disorders are common, affecting about 18% of adults in the United States. But only about 37% of people with anxiety disorders receive treatment.

    How yoga can help ease anxiety

    Yoga can be an effective treatment for anxiety. It’s a mind-body practice that combines physical postures, breathing techniques, and meditation.

    A small study found that yoga may help reduce symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Participants practiced yoga for 3 months. They also kept a diary of their anxiety symptoms.

    At the end of the study, the participants who took yoga classes had significantly lower levels of anxiety than those who didn’t take yoga classes.

    The benefits of yoga for people with anxiety

    Yoga has many benefits. It may help to ease anxiety by:

    – Reducing stress

    – Improving sleep

    – Increasing feelings of relaxation

    – Boosting confidence and self-esteem

    – Improving physical fitness

    Yoga may also help to reduce symptoms of other mental health conditions, such as depression.

    A 20-minute yoga practice for anxiety

    This simple yoga practice can be done anywhere, at any time. All you need is a mat or a towel and some comfortable clothing.

    Tips for sticking to a yoga routine when you’re struggling with anxiety

    If you’re struggling with anxiety, it can be difficult to stick to a yoga routine. Here are some tips that may help:

    -Set realistic goals. If you’re just starting out, don’t try to do an hour-long class every day. Start with something manageable, like a 20-minute class, and gradually increase the time as you feel more comfortable.

    -Find a class that’s right for you. There are many different types of yoga, so find one that feels good for your body and mind. If you’re not sure where to start, ask a friend or yoga instructor for recommendations.

    -Make time for yourself. Yoga is supposed to be relaxing, so don’t feel like you have to do it at a certain time or place. If you can’t make it to a class, practice at home or in a quiet spot outdoors.

    -Be patient. It takes time to see results from yoga, so don’t get discouraged if you don’t feel better right away. Stick with it and you will likely see a difference in your anxiety levels over time.

    A word of caution about using yoga to treat anxiety disorders

    If you’re thinking about using yoga to treat your anxiety disorder, I want to offer a word of caution. While yoga can be an effective tool for managing anxiety, it’s important to remember that it’s not a cure-all. Yoga should be used in conjunction with other treatment methods, such as therapy and medication.

    If you’re struggling with anxiety, yoga may be a helpful treatment option. It’s important to find a class that’s right for you and to be patient as you see results. Remember that yoga is not a cure-all, but rather one part of a larger treatment plan.

    Start your Omstars membership today to get expert guidance for your at-home yoga practice.

    By Omstars

    Image by Sofie Zbořilová from Pixabay

  • How Yoga Benefits Your Daily Life

    “Yoga opened my heart up to God, made me feel comfortable in my own skin, and has given me so much peace.” – Kino MacGregor

    When we think of yoga, the first thing that often comes to mind is the physical benefits of the practice. While it’s true that yoga benefits the body, there are also many benefits to be gained from a regular yoga practice that extend far beyond the physical.

    When you make the commitment to the yoga journey, you’ll find that every time you step onto your mat you bring more peace and happiness into your life. This doesn’t mean that your yoga journey will be easy. Most things worth pursuing aren’t, but every moment you spend practicing will train your mind and bring you closer to the inner peace we all crave.

    How does yoga bring inner peace? It does so by teaching us some of the most important lessons in life.

    Yoga teaches us how to overcome difficulty

    When we face challenges in our lives, it can be difficult to see the light at the end of the tunnel. We may feel like we are stuck in a rut and that there is no way out. However, yoga teaches us that difficulties are only temporary and that they can be overcome with time and practice.

    When we practice asanas, we see improvement over time. As we continue in our practice our bodies change, and we find ourselves able to do poses that might have seemed impossible to us when we first started practicing. Yoga gives you concrete examples in your life of difficult things improving over time.

    Through yoga, we learn how to be patient and how to persevere through tough times.

    Yoga also gives us discipline

    It is easy to get caught up in our daily lives and forget about our health and wellbeing. However, when we have a regular yoga practice, we are reminded to take time for ourselves and to focus on our breath and body. Yoga helps us to slow down and to be present in the moment. It is a chance for us to step away from our hectic lives and to focus on our health.

    When we have a regular yoga practice, we are more likely to make healthy choices in other areas of our lives as well. We are more likely to eat healthy foods and to get enough sleep. We are also more likely to be less stressed and to have more energy. The discipline of a daily practice extends into all aspects of our lives.

    Yoga teaches us compassion

    Yoga helps us connect with our breath and our bodies in a way that we may not have been able to do before. It helps us slow down and be present in the moment. And it also teaches us compassion – for ourselves and for others around us.

    When we are present in our yoga practice, we are able to see ourselves more clearly. We see our strengths and weaknesses, and we learn to accept ourselves as we are. This self-acceptance then extends to others around us. We become more compassionate towards those who are struggling because we know what it feels like to struggle ourselves.

    Yoga also helps us to see the interconnectedness of all beings. We realize that we are not alone in this world and that we are all connected. This sense of connection then leads to compassion for others, because we understand that their experiences are similar to our own.

    When we practice yoga regularly, we find that we are more patient, more disciplined, and more compassionate. We become better people because of our practice, and we learn to see the world in a different way. There are many reasons to practice yoga. It the power to change us from the inside out, and that is why it is such a special practice. Try it for yourself and see how it can transform your life.

    Start your Omstars membership today to get expert guidance for your at-home yoga practice.

    By Omstars

    Photo by Mikita Karasiou on Unsplash

  • Yoga for Sleep: An Easy Yoga Practice for Beginners

    Do you have trouble sleeping at night? If so, you’re not alone. Millions of people around the world suffer from insomnia or other sleep disorders. Luckily, there is a simple and natural solution: yoga.

    One of the many benefits of yoga is that it’s a safe and effective way to improve sleep. People who practice regularly have fewer sleep disturbances and fall asleep more easily.

    Yoga helps to relax your mind and body. It reduces stress and anxiety, by lowering your stress hormones and training your mind to focus on the present moment. All of these benefits lead to better sleep.

    Try these types of yoga for sleep :

    Hatha yoga: This type of yoga is slow and gentle, with basic poses. It’s a good choice if you’re new to yoga or looking for a relaxing practice.

    Yin yoga: This type of yoga focuses on passive, longer-held poses. It’s a good choice if you’re looking to wind down before bed.

    Restorative yoga: This type of yoga uses props to support your body in passive poses. It’s a good choice if you’re looking for a deeply relaxing practice.

    Yoga nidra: This type of yoga is also known as “yoga sleep.” It’s a guided meditation that leads you through relaxation and mindfulness techniques.

    This simple beginners yoga practice with Kino is ideal for you to unwind and get ready for sleep.

    Besides doing yoga for sleep, here are some other ways to ensure you’ll get a good rest at night.

    Avoid caffeine and alcohol before bed. Both of these can disrupt your sleep cycle and make it difficult to fall asleep.

    Create a relaxing bedtime routine. This could involve the yoga sequence in this post and reading a book or taking a bath.

    Make sure your bedroom is dark, quiet, and cool. This will create the ideal environment for sleep.

    Turn off harsh overhead lights before bed. Use only dim soft lamp light when you’re winding down to sleep. Doing so will help trigger your brain to produce melatonin.

    Disconnect from electronics before bed. The blue light emitted by screens can interfere with your body’s natural sleep rhythm.

    Add the yoga sequence and tips in this post into your nightly routine and you’ll see an improvement in the quality of your sleep in no time.

    Do you want more yoga classes like this one? Start your Omstars membership today to access daily LIVE classes and more than 4,000 on-demand yoga classes. Sign up today!

  • Yoga Is an Excellent Way to Relieve Stress: Here’s Why

    “Your body exists in the past and your mind exists in the future. In yoga, they come together in the present.” B.K.S.Iyengar

    Are you feeling stressed out? If so, yoga may be the answer for you! Yoga is a great way to relax and destress after a long day. It can help soothe your nervous system and improve your mental health. Scroll down for a yoga for stress relief practice with Kino MacGregor or keep reading to find out how yoga gets rid of your stress and anxiety.

    Yoga lowers stress hormones

    Studies have shown that yoga lowers cortisol (the stress hormone) levels and calms the nervous system. People who practice regularly are happier, calmer, and able to handle stress more easily. Yoga can also help improve your mood and well-being!

    Yoga activates the parasympathetic nervous system

    So, why is yoga so effective at reducing stress? For one, yoga involves deep breathing exercises which activate the parasympathetic nervous system.

    This system is responsible for “rest and digest” functions in the body, such as blood flow to the gut and relaxation. When we’re stressed, our sympathetic nervous system (the “fight or flight” response) is activated. This can lead to shallow breathing, increased heart rate, and tension in the body.

    Yoga helps to activate the parasympathetic nervous system, which helps the body to relax and feel calmer. Additionally, yoga involves movement and stretching, which can help to release physical tension that has built up in the body.

    Stretching boosts your mood

    Additionally, yoga poses (or asanas) stretch and tone the muscles, which can release tension in the body and make you feel better.

    One theory is that when we stretch our muscles, we release endorphins. Endorphins are hormones that have pain-relieving and mood-boosting effects. So, not only does yoga help to relieve physical tension, but it can also boost your mood!

    Yoga grounds you in the present

    Yoga is also a form of mindfulness, which can help to focus the mind and ease anxiety. When we focus on our breath and the present moment, it can help to ground us. Anxiety often comes from ruminating on past events or worrying about the future.

    Mindfulness helps us to focus on the present moment and let go of these worries. This can lead to a sense of calm and peace.

    The best types of yoga for stress relief

    There are many different types of yoga, and all of them can help to reduce stress. However, some yoga styles are more focused on relaxation than others.

    If you’re looking for a yoga class that will help you relax and de-stress, look for one that is labeled “gentle,” “restorative,” or “yin.” These classes tend to be slower-paced and use props such as blankets and bolsters to support the body.

    If you’re new to yoga, it’s a good idea to start with a beginner’s class. This will help you learn the basic poses and get a feel for the practice. Once you’re more comfortable, you can try a more advanced class.

    No matter what type of yoga for stress relief you choose, remember to focus on your breath and move at your own pace. Listen to your body and rest when you need to.

    Practice this short yoga for stress relief sequence with Kino to relax and unwind.

    Do you want more yoga in your life? Sign up for Omstars to get access to daily live classes, on-demand streaming classes, and a supportive yoga community.

    By Omstars

    Photo by Adél Grőber on Unsplash

  • Yoga for Back Pain Relief: An Easy 20 Minute Sequence

    Do you have back pain? You’re not alone. Most of us will suffer from it at some point in our lives. If you’re experiencing back pain now and looking for some relief this short, simple yoga sequence will help release your tense back and get the blood flowing to those muscles again.  You’ll find that this class will not only ease your back pain but will also help you feel good all over and give you a renewed sense of energy.  Scroll down to the bottom of the post to watch the video and practice along with Kino or look at the pictures and read the descriptions to practice on your own.

    Cat Cow Pose

    Let’s start with Cat Cow Pose. To do this pose, start on all fours with your wrists directly below your shoulders and your knees hip-width apart. Inhale as you drop your belly toward the floor and look up. Then exhale as you round your spine upward and tuck in your chin, looking down at your navel. Continue flowing between these two positions. Inhale drop your belly and arch your back and exhale round your spine and tuck your chin. Do this for five breaths.

    Downward Facing Dog

    Adho Mukha Svanasana or Downward Facing Dog helps stretch out tight hamstrings, calves, and Achilles tendons. This pose is one of the most popular in yoga because it feels so good when done correctly!

    Begin in a tabletop position. Place your hands shoulder-width apart and tuck your toes under. Exhale and lift your hips up and back. Keep your head between your arms. Release your heels toward the floor. Try to evenly distribute your weight between your hands and feet.  Hold for five breaths, then release back to tabletop.

    Child’s Pose

    Child’s Pose helps to lengthen and stretch the spine while releasing tension in the neck and shoulders. To perform Child’s Pose start on all fours with your hands directly underneath your shoulders and knees hip-width apart. Slowly lower your hips to your heels. Stretch your arms out in front of you. Stay here for five breaths.

    Low Lunge

    Starting from downward facing dog, step your right foot forward between your hands. Sink your back knee down to the ground. Point your back toe. Lift your ribs up and out of the pelvis. Reach your hands up over your head. Hold for five breaths.

    Sphinx Pose

    Sphinx pose strengthens your back while stretching the muscles in your abdomen and chest. Lie on your stomach. Come up onto your elbows with your forearms on the floor pointing straight out in front of you. Your elbows should be aligned directly beneath your shoulders. Relax your back muscles. Hold for five breaths before releasing.

    Puppy Pose

    Puppy pose helps to stretch and open up the chest, as well as release tension in the lower back. To do puppy pose, start on all fours with your hands directly below your shoulders and your knees hip-width apart. Slide your hands forward on the ground allowing your head to come toward the floor. Keep your hips up and tuck your chin toward your chest. Place your forehead on the floor. Stay here for five breaths.

    Yoga Squat

    Yoga squat releases tense low back muscles. To do the pose, come into a squatting position with your feet wider than your hips. Try to keep your heels on the floor. If you can’t use a rolled-up blanket or towel under your heels to support them. Lengthen through the back. Bring your hand together in prayer position in front of you. Hold the position for five deep steady breaths.

    Reclining Fish Pose with Blocks

    In this version of reclining fish pose, we’ll use blocks to give your back and head support. To do this pose, place one block lengthways in the second position and the other block in the highest position at the top of the first block. You’re setting the blocks up to support your spine and head. Now slowly lie back on the blocks. Bring your arms out to the sides, and relax in the pose for five breaths.

    Constructive Rest

    Lie on your back with your knees bent and the soles of your feet on the floor about hip-width apart. Let your knees fall in toward each other. Place one hand on your chest and one hand on your belly. Notice your breath. Stay here as long as you like and relax.

    Watch the video below with Kino to do the whole practice with her. Remember, always consult with a doctor before starting any new exercise routine. And be sure to modify any of these poses as needed depending on your own individual body and needs. With a little bit of practice, you should start to feel relief from your back pain in no time! Namaste.

     

     

  • 29 Reasons to Start a Yoga Practice

    Yoga is the settling of the mind into silence. When the mind has settled, we are established in our essential nature, which is unbounded Consciousness. Our essential nature is usually overshadowed by the activity of the mind. – Patanjali

    The ancient practice of yoga can be traced back thousands of years. Since its beginnings in northern India, it has spread throughout the world and has morphed into many different styles formed from the ideas of many different gurus, but all of yoga still has something important in common—its benefits.

    No matter how old you are or what kind of physical condition your find yourself in there is a yoga style that suits you. Starting a practice can be a life-changing endeavor that will improve your mental and physical health.

    Here are 29 benefits of yoga to encourage you to start a yoga practice this year.

    Improves sleep

    People who practice yoga regularly report improved quality of sleep. Higher quality sleep helps your body and mind function better throughout the day. People who get a good night’s sleep are more productive and happier.

    Strengthens muscles

    Yoga uses your own body weight to build lean strong muscles at any age. The movements done during a practice activate muscles you may not use regularly in your daily life.

    Increases flexibility

    Getting into all those yoga poses stretches out tight still muscles. Loose flexible muscles are healthy muscles that are less vulnerable to injury.

    Improves mobility

    Mobility is always important but as we age we tend to have issues with mobility and balance that contribute to falling injuries. Older people have some improvements in mobility and balance when they start a regular yoga practice.

    Improves balance

    When you practice yoga, you do balancing postures. These postures don’t just improve balance they also improve foot and ankle strength.

    Decreases depression

    The combination of breathing and movement you do when you practice yoga helps balance hormones and boost the hormones that make you feel good. In turn, this lowers your stress and anxiety helping with depression and general happiness levels.

    Teaches you to live in the present moment

    Yoga is a kind of moving meditation. As you practice you focus on the combination of your movements and breath to stay grounded in the moment.

    Relieves stress and anxiety

    85% of people who practice report that they use yoga for stress relief. It also eases anxiety. Yoga calms the nervous system through the use of deep breathing and movement.

    Motivates you to make other health improvements

    People who practice yoga say that it has motivated them to take further steps to take care of their bodies like eating better and getting additional exercise.

    Eases chronic pain

    The combined benefits of yoga including increased mobility, improved circulation, and decreased inflammation all contribute to relieve chronic pain. Yoga has been found to decrease the pain of conditions like arthritis, low back pain, fibromyalgia, and other chronic pain conditions.

    Improves lung capacity

    Yoga connects your breathing to your movements. Deep controlled breathing is part of the practice and as you continue to practice, you’ll find your breath capacity and your ability to control your breath improve.

    Gives you a sense of inner peace

    Yoga teaches you to use breath to help regulate your emotional state. It also helps you feel a deeper connection between yourself and the world around you.

    Builds confidence

    People who practice yoga have more body confidence. The principles of yoga teach you to accept yourself as you are and not to compare yourself to others.

    Improves your posture

    Yoga stretches and lengthens muscles freeing up vertebrae and giving you the ability to stand up straighter.

    Helps you focus

    People who practice yoga as little as 20 minutes per day report that they are better able to focus when performing other tasks and can remember things more easily.

    Reduces inflammation

    After people practice yoga anti-inflammation markers in their blood decrease and pro-inflammatory markers decrease.

    Helps you get in touch with your body

    The regular practice of movement increases body awareness and helps you get in touch with your body in a healthy way.

    Improves circulation

    The movement of your muscles increases blood flow providing your cells with more life-giving oxygen and helping your feel better physically.

    Gives your immune system a boost

    Lowering your stress hormones boosts your immune system helping your body fight disease more effectively.

    Regulates your energy

    You can use yoga to give you a natural boost when you’re feeling tired and to help you unwind at the end of the day.

    Helps you feel good all over

    People who practice consistently report feeling better after completing a practice.

    Boosts your metabolism

    Regular movement practice boosts your metabolism helping your body burn more energy.

    Improves spine health

    In yoga you move your spine in ways you might not in normal daily life, improving circulation to back muscles and the movement of craniosacral fluid.

    Helps you to get to know yourself

    Coming back to the practice again and again teaches you some important lessons about yourself. As you practice you’ll notice the way you approach your practice mirrors the way you approach life.

    Prevents joint deterioration as you age

    The movement yoga requires keeps your joints naturally lubricated and keeps the blood flowing slowing down the breakdown of your joints as you age.

    Improves bone health

    The weight-bearing and balancing postures help improve bone density.

    Drains your lymphatic system

    Your lymphatic system depends on the movements of your muscles to push lymph throughout your body. The way yoga encourages you to move in ways you normally wouldn’t helps push more lymph through your system.

    Lowers blood pressure

    The calming breathing and movement of yoga calms your nervous system and lowers your blood pressure.

    Gives you a sense of belonging

    Yoga is practiced by people all over the world and there is a community of people who are dedicated to the practice. When you start to practice you become part of that community. Attending yoga classes helps connect you to others.

    By Omstars

    Photo by Elina Fairytale from Pexels

     

     

     

  • Yoga for Stress Relief

    When you’re feeling stressed a gentle restorative class or Yin Yoga class can be just what the doctor ordered. If you are particularly stressed out and you aren’t in a situation where you can do a few yoga poses you can try a short mindful breathing exercise to calm your nervous system and soothe your mind.


    Most of us will feel stress at some point in life, but too much stress can damage your health and even shorten your lifespan. No matter what the root of your stress it’s important to find relief. Yoga can provide stress relief when you need it most. You don’t have to do a full hour of practice to get the stress-relieving benefits of the practice. Taking a few minutes to do a couple of poses can make a big difference by calming your nervous system, relaxing tense muscles, and soothing your busy mind.

    What is yoga?

    Yoga is an ancient Indian practice that increases your physical and mental health. When you practice yoga, you use breath along with movement to deepen your mind-body connection.

    Yoga isn’t reserved for people who are already flexible or in shape. Anyone can do it. Poses can be modified to fit any body type or physical ability. You don’t have to wear fancy yoga clothes or have an expensive yoga mat. You only need a willingness to learn.

    Benefits of Yoga

    Stretching and moving your body is good for your muscles. The human body was meant to move around after all.

    Researchers have been studying yoga for years and have found that when practiced even for a few minutes it can lower stress hormone levels.

    Studies have shown that yoga …

    What to do when you’re stressed…

    When you’re feeling stressed a gentle restorative yoga class or Yin Yoga class can be just what the doctor ordered.

    If you are particularly stressed out and you aren’t in a situation where you can do a few yoga poses you can try this short mindful breathing exercise.

    Sit up straight and breathe deeply through your nose. Be sure to breathe from your diaphragm, letting your belly and then your chest expand with each inhale to fill your lungs to capacity. Then slowly exhale through your nose. As you exhale let your muscles relax. Feel the tension flowing out of your body. Focus your mind on the feeling of the air moving through your nostrils. Take 10 slow steady breaths to calm your mind and body.

    When you are in a space where you can do some yoga this 10-minute practice will relax the tension you’re holding in your body and melt away the stress.

    We live in a hectic world, but with yoga on your side, you have the tools to keep stress at bay and walk through this busy world with a calm and steady mind. If you’re ready to start practicing regularly sign up for a 14-day trial with Omstars and find out how an at-home yoga practice can change your life.

    By Omstars

    Sign up for an Omstars membership to take your yoga practice to the next level.

    Click here to start your 14-day free trial today!

     

    Photo by rishikesh yogpeeth on Unsplash

  • SUP Yoga: Connecting with Self on A Paddle Board

    SUP yoga is a beautiful blend of devotion and meditation. It takes poses from traditional yoga and puts them into a tranquil setting that will calm your mind.

    SUP yoga is a low-intensity, full-body workout that takes you away from distractions. There’s nothing calmer than being out on the water on a board. Doing yoga on a paddle board adds an extra element of challenge to your practice and gives you an opportunity to connect with nature and calm your mind.

    Here’s what you need to get start SUP Yoga:

    1. Flat Paddle Board
    2. Fishing Anchor
    3. Life Jackets
    4. Leash
    5. Waterproof Vest (PFDs)

    Flat Paddle Board

    An inflatable board is preferred for advancing your skill levels on a paddleboard. Choose a board size of more than 35 inches perfect for placing your body. A board with a mount for attaching a camera is perfect for recording all your sessions.

    The length and width of the board matter a lot to practice all types of yogic exercises. A board with a soft surface should be preferred so that you don’t tend to harm your knees and elbows.

    Fishing Anchor

    You will never prefer the idea of moving boards while you are concentrating on practicing yogic positions. An anchor will come in handy in such a situation, just attach it to the board so that it remains tied at one place and prove to be helpful when you want to fix the position of your board and focus on your practice sessions.

    Life Jackets

    A bit out of trend but is the most important gear inside water. You may try your hand at a complex set of exercises which may lead you to face a splash inside the water. Life jackets will be the savior in such a situation but better ace your swimming lessons because it is not wise to risk your life while you are enhancing your skill sets inside water.

    Leash

    Prefer a board with a leash so that when you might fall, your board takes you along. Attach it carefully to the board and while you immerse yourself in the vicinity of natural beauty over the crystal-clear water, a leash acts as a precautionary measure.

    Waterproof Vest (PFDs)

    Prevention is better than cure and you don’t know when your board tends to lose grip and let you face the splash. A waterproof costume that soaks all the water if you face a fall and let you begin your sessions from the same point where you stopped.

    It’s good to be fashionable but with it following safety measures won’t cost much. Spend on high-quality vests which are a boon for acing water skills.

    Handy Tips to Get You Started

    ● A calm and composed spot where you can relinquish to the tranquillity of natural surroundings is a perfect place to get started. A body of water covered with dense trees would be an added advantage in case you want to save your skin from the wrath of intense rays of the sun.

    ● It is never good to start fast even if you are a pro. Practicing on land and in water comes with huge differences. You might go at a fast pace on land but in water and especially on board never increase your pace because moving slowly also helps you to have a pleasant time.

    ● Find a comfort level with your board because until you ace that comfort level you will tend to lose the grip and fall again and again and it will also affect your pace and you will never experience the full the benefit of SUP yoga.

    ● It’s great to be a soloist, but when you are a newbie, it’s not bad to have an expert guiding you. The yogic experts know how to deal with the challenges of practicing on board and if you take help from the expert in initial sessions you might become an expert in the future as well.

    Health Benefits

    The challenges associated with SUP yoga offer added health benefits. It takes hard work and patience to ace this skill. SUP yoga has a calming effect on mental health and also acts as a stress buster.

    Being away from noises and disturbances instills positive energy in your mind. The balancing technique on the board engages your core and promotes flexibility, concentration, and overall health.

    Your breath is important and yoga is beneficial for improving breathing and circulation. I’ve found SUP to be a life-changing experience.

    Five Handy Points for Beginners

    1. Turn off your mobile phones before getting on the board. Don’t keep it at home because you might need it for emergency situations. Keep it on silent mode or fix it on the mount for capturing some good shots so you can relish the experience later on.

    Don’t move back and forth between your phone and practice sessions. Focus on what you have really decided to practice. You can look at your phone later.

    2. Use sunscreen. The rays of the sun can get pretty intense, especially when you’re on the water. You don’t want to burn out there.

    3. While you might plan your sessions on an empty stomach but that’s not a good idea. It might give you nausea but don’t overload yourself with heavy meals either. Take light meals and plenty of water. You can even keep water bottles inside a SUP cooler attached to your board.

    It’s mandatory to hydrate yourself from time to time. Being under the sun for a maximum amount of time makes your body starve for energy and water or glucose water should be on your list.

    4. It is not advisable to practice every yoga pose on the board. Take into consideration the amount of space you have on your board before you plan a yoga sequence to try.

    Don’t put one leg or hand inside water while keeping the other one on the board. All your body will be fixed on the board, so don’t practice exercises that don’t allow your body to remain fixed on the board.

    Here are some poses you can do on a board:

    A. Seated prayer pose (Relaxes the mind, improves circulation, and strengthens the spine)
    B. Plank yoga pose (Strengthens core, heightens metabolism, and reduces back pain)
    C. Downward facing dog pose (Calms brain, strengthens shoulders, arms, and legs; energizes the body)
    D. Child pose (Releases tensions in back, shoulders, chest; strengthens muscles and tendons)
    E. Crescent lunge (strengthens legs, hips, thighs; opens the front body and balances the body)

    5. Practice makes perfect. Before trying your hand at this fantastic activity on the water practice on your board on land. You can take Youtube classes if you are a newcomer or find a teacher. Once you get a hang of it on land you’ll be ready to get in the water.

    This trendy water workout is not only for fitness enthusiasts and surfers. Anyone who wants to give it a try can.

    Conclusion

    Now that you know how to get started you’re ready to experience the calming power of SUP yoga. It is a beautiful blend of devotion, meditation, and expression of power and energy. SUP yoga takes the sequences and positions from traditional yoga and puts them into a different setting. So grab your board, throw your hair in a bun, and just breathe!

    By Kenneth Driscoll

    Kenneth Driscoll is an expert paddleboarding enthusiast and a yoga lover. He loves to find locations for his adventures, and meet new people who have similar passions. He has been working with various outdoor activities and yoga publications online and offline, providing them quality and meticulous content catering to the range of informative articles. He is a fun-loving and ambitious person who likes to grab every opportunity to have an adventurous experience. Currently, he is working in inflatable paddleboard blogs and online publications.

    Photo by Daniel Frank on Unsplash.

    Start your 14-day Free Trial with Omstars Today!

  • Top Three Yin Yoga Postures to Relieve Stress

      Puppy Pose is perfect for stretching out tired shoulders and tight lower back muscles. Supta Baddha Konasana is a therapeutic pose that allows your mind and body to truly relax and heal. Viparita Karani is the ultimate pose for all over stress relief and healing.  

    Puppy Pose

    Puppy Pose is perfect for stretching out tired shoulders and tight lower back muscles. A nice long hold in this asana helps relieve tension in the body and mind. Start off in table top pose and then slowly extend the arms forward. Align the hands as close together as possible. Exhale as you send the top of the forehead towards the ground. Be sure the hips are slightly open and that your body weight is evenly distribute between the hands and legs. Stay for minimum five breaths but up to a few minutes. To deepen the pose, try sending your chest towards the ground instead of your forehead (but avoid pressing too much weight on to the chin).

    Supta Baddha Konasana

    Supta Baddha Konasana is a therapeutic pose that allows your mind and body to truly relax and heal. Start off in Constructive Rest pose with your sacrum resting on the ground. Place two blocks wider than your hips width apart. Exhale as you send your knees outwards and rest your thighs on the blocks. If you need a little extra support for your back, use a bolster under the spine. Close your eyes and breathe deeply. Hold the pose for a minimum of 30 seconds but up to five minutes.

    Viparita Karani

    Viparita Karani is the ultimate pose for all over stress relief and healing. To practice this pose, lie on your back and slowly fold your legs in towards your chest. Extend the legs upwards, engage your quadriceps and point your toes. Relax your shoulders and be sure that your sacrum is pressing into the ground. If it’s uncomfortable to lift the legs in the air, then rest your legs and feet against the wall. Hold for minimum 30 seconds, but up to five minutes. This pose is great for long days of standing, sitting or walking. Viparita Karani calms the nervous systems and helps your body and mind release tension.

    Start your 14-day Free Trial with Omstars Today!

    By Kino MacGregor

    Practice LIVE with Kino MacGregor on Omstars!

    International yoga teacher, Kino MacGregor has over 20 years of experience in Ashtanga yoga & 18 years of experience in Vipassana Meditation. She is one of a select group of people to receive the certification to teach Ashtanga Yoga & practice into the Fifth Series of Ashtanga Yoga. With over 1 million followers on Instagram & over 500,000 subscribers on YouTube & Facebook, she spreads the message of yoga around the world. To Kino, yoga is more than making shapes. It is a daily ritual where people tune deeply into their spiritual center & experience the peace of the Eternal Divine. Her goal is to make the tools of traditional yoga accessible for all different sizes, shapes, ethnicities, & ages. She believes yoga is truly for everyone. Learn more from and connect with Kino on Instagram!

  • Moon Day – March 21st Full Moon

    It brings me great joy to offer you our very first Omstars Moon Day Blog Series! I’m nervous, scared, excited, and all things – but you know what?! I decided that I have to do this for myself and not behave the way my mind would want to. It feels good to shed some new skin, push out of our boundaries and shake up what we’re used to doing.

    T he Full Moon enters Libra Wednesday, March 20 at 9:43 PM EST. It’s a rare and powerful event as the Super Moon and Equinox land on this same day. The Equinox in the sign of Aries is about questioning what’s important to us as we connect to our hearts and co-create our reality. Do we want what we see or do we want something different, maybe new? Open to the real potential of you living your wildest dreams.

    We end a cycle most recently with the Sun moving through Pisces that was finishing, closing, wrapping things up from the previous year making way for this time. It’s a culmination of all the inner-work that is going to manifest socially in our relationships and the world. Libra full moon is a time to bring fairness, balance, and right relationships into our lives. Major life issues may come up for transformation and resolution. Significant aspects of your shadow may emerge to be integrated, loved, or acknowledged. Significant challenges may arise for you to change your trajectory to align you with your highest timeline and potential.

    The super full moon in Libra highlights relationships, with restoring the balance of energy shared and given. Pay attention to what comes up for transformation, healing, and resolution. Ease of opportunity to show you a whole new way to show up in your relationships. How do you balance giving and connecting while taking the time to nurture, uplift and support yourself? Go within your practice (meditation, yoga, outdoors), so you can develop and bring greater love and awareness to all relationships. Through this, there is potential for flourishing connections and for the ones out of balance they may fall away. Use your awareness to observe from a place of non-duality. Recognize where the relationship is giving you opportunities to learn and grow. See where it is mirroring to you something about yourself and how you can expand into your higher divine self.

    This year, the equinox point is conjunct Chiron. This conjunction stands out because it is very close together. Chiron is a symbol of holistic healing. It means that 2019 will be the year of holistic healing. The Northern Equinox conjunct Chiron implies that at a collective and individual level, this year we will have the opportunity to restore our wholeness. No matter what needs healing in your life, in the coming year you have the chance to regain your balance and become whole again finally. In these alignments, an opportunity to access higher realms and dimensions of spirit by an influx of divine crystalline light assisting and supporting you in embodying the next level of your highest divine truth. There is a new potential in how we can live our life. We’ve seen the possibility of what we could do, have, and become. It’s a process of rapid reorganization with what no longer serves us. We will have to go down into the lower world and face what’s in there. We will have to open ourselves to the mysteries of the upper world and embrace the unknown. Yes, the journey will not be easy, but it will be worth it. There is no greater gift than restoring one’s wholeness.

    We are not alone as Chiron is also a symbol for mentors, so you can expect to find a mentor that will steer your life in the right direction. You may also find yourself traveling to holy sites to receive messages and spiritual growth. Emotional maturity and connecting with our hearts will enable us to speak our truth. The true you always existed, and now it wants to be living in your physical character, personality, and actual life. Cosmic Service will be more prevalent to raise the consciousness of humanity.

    Get somewhere with a good view low to the eastern horizon at dusk on March 20th. A pale orange moon will appear due east, and quickly become pale yellow. It’s golden for a few minutes if there are clear skies. If not, you’ll have to wait for 29 days until the next one. That’s half the fun.

    I wish you clear skies and wide eyes!

    By Danielle Hicks

    Danielle Hicks is an adventurer, writer, creator, and explorer of the unknown. RYT-200hr and longtime yoga practitioner, she came to Ashtanga Yoga right before embarking on a year-long van-life journey two years ago. Danielle is on cloud nine as she is an apprentice, assisting, and guiding others in their Mysore style practice at The Yoga Shala in Orlando, Florida. A zany magnetic off-beat intuitive Danielle is learning to share and embrace her side of the inner world. Cultivation of her fruits will be gifts to share as she is on the verge of something new. To read more about Danielle’s journey go here: elfeatheryoga.com @el.feather.yoga