Great Digestion


This week of thanksgiving brought a theme designed for great digestion. In our flow, we nourished ourselves with strength, balance and we wrung ourselves out with lots of twists.

We set up for great digestion, so we could digest food, people, experiences, cooking, shopping, irritating relatives, crowds, traveling or whatever students needed :)

The idea was to be so wrung out at the end of class that any frustrations or worries would leave your body & mind. Our twists were interwoven with some core, free time for an inversion or pose of choice, Goddess pose with arms overhead thinking of something you’re grateful for and receiving it with open arms, crow pose, partner squat, tree with a twist, and our apex arm balancing, twist: side crow. Students connected, laughed and breathed away any anxiety or tension. We closed with pigeon, a backbend and a partner upavista konasana with a twist.

I am thankful for each and every one of you, Lynn

Purpose & Aparigraha


Class last week had the theme of purpose and aparigraha. Aparigraha is a sanskrit word from the 8 limbs of yoga. It’s from the yamas and niyamas, which are values and habits that are the backdrop/philosophy behind the yoga practice. Aparigraha is a yama that means non-greed, non-grasping, non-clinging. Through the energy of non-grasping, we sought our unique purpose for the day. The asana practice included poses with resolve.

Students deepened their breath while I read a few words about aparigraha: Yoga is about creating space in the body and mind. When we do a posture, we strive to find our edge, stop a moment, and use the breath to determine if we can go further or if “where we are” is enough for today. When we detach from the messages of our bodies, such as pain, and continue to push forth, we are no longer expanding, but rather contracting and suffering. We are practicing greed. If our intention is to create space, an openness to Grace, then we lessen our needs and wants for things to fill us up. We are in a state of abundance and we are practicing aparigraha.

Students set their intentions and then we did our first hasta mudra, a hand gesture in which the elbows are bent and the palms face the sky. It’s a gesture of non-grasping, of opening ourselves to the moment and to exploring our unique purpose for the day. As students took the shape of hasta mudra, I spoke of allowing the hands to transmit a balanced energy of giving and receiving. I asked students to take a moment to connect fully with themselves and their surroundings, and to say this phrase to themselves: “I open to explore my unique purpose today”.

We moved into a warming flow, held plank for a full minute, weaved in a few more hasta mudras. Students took free time for an inversion of their choice that connected them to a sense of resolve or purpose. Yogis continued to connect to their power, purpose and core in warrior 2, triangle, and half moon with the top foot at the wall to create deep strength and support and maybe a moment of lifting both hands in prayer or a shoulder stretch behind the back. Tree pose revealed our strong foundation and how very present we can be, not needing anything else. A favorite was prasarita padottanasana into parsva konasana. We returned to our resolve in warrior 1 and turned it into flight in warrior 3. Students breathing and quality of attention was amazing.

I want to credit my teacher Amy Ippoliti in the photo and my mentor, Mary Lynn Fitton, for her beautiful teachings on the 8 limbs of yoga. Deep bow, Lynn

Happy Quads


This week the theme was happy quads. As we strengthened and stretched the quadricep muscles this week, the hope was to release the hips and make them happy, too.

We explored poses to strengthen the quads which in turn helped us feel safe and contained and supported and strong! Stretching the quads helped relieve tightness and bring in a spacious, more open feeling. Tightness in the low back or IT bands is often caused by quad tightness. When we stretch the quads, it helps us feel calm and stabilized in the mind, body and nervous system. This class focused on support and release for the quads, in addition to some twists, balancing poses, partner squats and backbends.

We started in hero pose (virasana). This kneeling pose is a light stretch for the quads and students often sit on a block or blanket to find a comfortable range of stretch. After establishing ujjayi breath and thoughtful intentions, we joined in one big Om to open class. Warming and strengthening sun salutes led us into quad strengthening standing poses. Chapasana was added to half moon pose. Students bravely held “Z” pose for a full minute of deep strength.

We took to the wall for “King Arthur” pose. This pose gets deeper into your Vastus Lateralis, the largest and most powerful muscle that forms the quadriceps and is often the cause of IT band tightness. King Arthur is an awkward pose to get into, but once you’re there, you may find it stretches deeper into the quad than many other poses. Everyone was game and found their place at the wall and used blocks under their hands when needed. Kapingalasana was our apex challenge. Students went into side plank and attempted to catch their top foot, look down, press their hips forward and balance on one arm while doing a thigh stretch. Playfulness balanced out desperation :) Students rested in childs pose when they needed and took extra vinyasas when they needed more fire. We finished with bow pose on our belly. A pose that frees the quads and opens the back. A deep, quiet savasana sealed in the practice. On a personal note, I was very sore after teaching this class for 3 days in a row. I took a day off and then my quads felt very open. So, short term soreness will turn into long term freedom. Namaste, Lynn

Repetition and Artistry

This week the theme was repetition and artistry. Sometimes repetition might seem boring or dull. But repetition has another side. In its familiarity, it can be soothing, comforting and even free the mind. When we don’t have to concentrate so hard on learning something for the first time, space can open up in the mind and allow for observations and learning. The artistry is your own personal expression that you add to the poses. So when we repeated poses, yogis may have craved to feel what it felt like to do the pose over in a similar way, or on the second round, they may have wanted to modify within the repetition with their own arm or leg variation.

Class opened with a few words I wrote about artistry that I read to students while they connected with their ujjiyi breath. They began moving breath through the spine in cat and cow and into warming sun salutations. They repeated a few extra surya namaskar As in which they could modify with their choice of backbend. Two repetitions of classic surya namaskar B were followed by side plank and into some standing sequences. Those sequences were repeated twice and started with the placeholder of warrior 2 and flowed into “no hands” exalted warrior into “no hands” parsva konasana. Partner squat allowed for a friendly break greeting a neighbor, and then into two rounds of triangle followed by two rounds of tree.

Yogis emanated steadiness in breath and footing, and the energy seemed more focused on the second round of a pose. They ventured into watery spiders for the hips, onward to pigeon, two backbends and closing with two supine twists. In savasana, yogis pictured themselves as a field of flowers. Their breath the sunshine and water. As they visualized sinking into the soil & imagining all those petals unfolding, I encouraged them to feel deeper into the diamond-like light in the center of their being and to let their nervous system relax into the subtle glow. I thank my teacher, MC Yogi, for inspiration in those closing words. To our yoga community…. namaste, Lynn




This week’s theme was balance. We looked at balance in a broader, deeper way. Not in such a precise or fussy way.

The word balance can sometimes be overused. I’m not sure we’re ever in perfect balance or if that’s even the goal. I think we’re always ebbing and flowing, pulsating in and out of balance. We know when we feel that stable contentment, and we feel when we’ve gotten too scattered or off center.

I asked students this week to think about balance beyond the traditional standing on 1 leg poses. We did practice some balancing poses, W3 in particular. However, students were invited to think about balance in the hips, shoulders, front to back, side to side, effort with effortlessness, inhales balanced with exhales, and any other way the word made sense to them. Balance might be an extra childs pose or a longer, deeper hold in a challenging asana. As students set their intentions, I encouraged them to let the concept of balance soak into their breath, their intentions, the fabric of their being.

Requests were taken for any pose a student felt would bring their body & mind into alignment. Dancer and camel were favorites. Poses included cresent with a side bend, some core work in side plank on forearms, crow, messy dog, triangle to half moon to revolved half moon, and a variety of work in Warrior 3. Each class varied a bit. We did W3 at the wall with blocks under our hands, with our hands pressing against the wall, alone in the middle of the room, and a crowd favorite was warrior 3 in rows holding each others shoulders! In a couple classes we added Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana as we stood in rows and held each other’s heels. Class rounded out with pigeon, camel variations and alternate nostril breathing to balance the two sides of the brain. Thanks for your dedication.

Namaste, Lynn