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  • 5 Yoga Poses For Stress & Anxiety

     

    Stress is something that affects us all. In fact, we need a bit of stress in our lives to help evolve, grow, gain perspective and stay motivated. But when we’re overloaded with stress (hello, 2017), it can become overwhelming and detrimental. Ultimately, too much stress affects our mental, emotional and physical wellbeing, which is why making time to practice yoga is so important.

    Yoga provides the perfect tools to help us deal with stress. Below, you’ll find some key poses to help relieve anxiety and allow you to move through your day with more mindfulness and peace:

    Sesa O'Connor

    1. Child’s Pose (Balasana)

    This pose has an immediate calming effect. It allows the mind to turn inward away from distractions.

    • Come to a kneeling position, with knees wide and big toes together.
    • Place a bolster between your thighs, then fold forward from the hips and rest your chest down.
    • Rest head on the floor or on a block, with arms stretched out in front.

    2. Crocodile (Makrasana)

    This position allows for a deep connection with your own breath, helping to turn the mind inwards.

    • Lay on your belly.
    • Make a pillow with your hands and rest your head upon them.
    • Keep your legs out straight behind you, with feet turned outwards.
    • Focus on the breath down into the belly. Feel it pressing the floor as you inhale and soften back on the exhalation.

    3. Reclining Bound Angle (Supta baddha konasana)

    The detrimental effects of stress often occur because we’re holding onto unnecessary thoughts or feelings. This pose teaches us how to let go.

    • Lay on your back, place the soles of the feet together and knees resting apart.
    • A bolster can be placed underneath from the lower back up to the back of the head.
    • Extra support can also be placed under the thighs.

    4. Legs Up The Wall (Viparita Karani)

    This inverted position is instantly calming and introverting.

    • Sit with the side of your pelvis against the wall.
    • As you lay down, pivot legs to swing up the wall so your spine is lengthening away from it.
    • A bolster or low block can be placed under the back of the pelvis for more comfort.

    5. Savasana

    The ultimate stress-relieving pose!

    • Lay on your back, with the spine in a straight line.
    • Let feet and legs roll out from each other, and arms rolled out from the sides of the body.
    • Tuck the chin slightly towards the chest. A bolster or blanket can be placed under the knees to relieve tightness in the lower back.
    • Now, just breathe normally and relax.

    PRACTICE ON

  • 8 Steps to Creating the Ultimate Home Yoga Practice

    Developing a home yoga routine can be daunting. Finding the time and space to show up on your mat each day is challenging, especially when you're used to the structure of an in-person yoga class.

     

    But learning how to practice yoga at home allows you the space to really listen to your body and its needs, without the temptation of playing a comparison game with neighboring yogis.

     

    More often than not, the biggest hurdle is simply showing up. The remaining steps? We’ve outlined them below to help get you started. Practice On.

     

     

    1. Get Online

    Make use of the many resources out there. Online yoga classes are a great way to get started on your home yoga journey, providing just enough structure and routine to build up confidence to “go it alone”. And with a range of different lengths, styles and levels to choose from, there’s always a class to fit your needs.

     

    1. Create the Right Space

    Creating an inspiring space for your practice is crucial. Find somewhere open and clutter-free that creates a feeling of ‘space’. Outfit that space with props that make you feel comfortable and supported. We love blankets and blocks for home practices.

     

    1. Find Your Soul Mat

    The cornerstone of your practice should be a mat that suits your needs and personal style. We love our PRO mats, especially the PRO Squared (if you can fit it!) Confused on which mat is best for you? Take our quiz!

     

    1. Be Selfish

    Take the time to tap into how you’re feeling. No two practices are going to be the same. Some days, you’ll want a stronger, longer practice; others, you might just want to do a few Sun Salutations and lie in Savasana.  Allow yourself the flexibility to feel what you and your body really need.

     

    1. Welcome The Resistance

    Resistance is part of life. Embrace it, rather than punishing yourself with it. The most important thing is that you make it to the mat, whether it’s for 5 minutes or 50 minutes. Respect and appreciate where you’re at in your practice.

     

    1. Start Small

    It can take a while for a new commitment to turn into a habit. Respect that, and start with just a few minutes, working up to a longer practice when it feels comfortable.

     

    1. Phone = Off

    This is YOUR time, and don’t let anyone or anything take it from you. If you're joining Yogaia classes from your phone, make sure to turn off all notifications so your class doesn't get interrupted.

    1. Forgive, Forget & Carry On

    Falling off the wagon is normal – so don’t beat yourself up about it! Just be sure to get right back on and reward yourself that you did.

    PRACTICE ON

  • project:OM Artist Spotlight – Taking Back Control with David Allen

     

     

    Meet David Allen, a tattoo artist and painter known for his work tattooing over the scars left behind by mastectomies of breast cancer survivors. We sat down to discuss his partnership with project:OM.

    Why did you want to become a tattoo artist?

    I like the one-on-one aspect where I can spend time with a client, whether that be two hours or five. And I can deliver art that caters directly to the person.

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  • A Pioneer of project:OM - Danni Pomplun

    Danni Pomplun | The Manduka BlogAs a cancer survivor, Danni was one of the first ambassadors to join the project:OM movement. He is a 500-hr Registered Yoga Instructor and a member of the teacher training faculty at Yoga Tree in San Francisco. Danni credits yoga with opening his eyes to a world of positive opportunities.

    Helping others and having fun doing it – that’s the stuff this project:OM ambassador thrives on. Join us as we sit with San Francisco based yoga teacher, Danni Pomplun, to talk about his love of helping others while paving the way for project:OM ambassadors.

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  • What do yoga and Wrestlemania have to do with each other? Everything, especially when it's for a great cause.

    project:OM Pre-Wrestlemania Event | The Manduka Blog

    If you haven’t heard yet, our project:OM event to benefit Susan G. Komen is taking place May 12-14 and it’s all about bringing many different people together for a great cause…one million people, to be exact. But when we launched project:OM last month, we never imagined that one of our biggest yoga supporters would end up being…the WWE.

    But when you think deeper, it does make sense: We all believe in the power of yoga, health and wellness to heal our bodies, minds and spirits. Susan G. Komen has seen that spirit manifested in countless heroic breast cancer survivors, WWE harnesses the power of yoga to keep their Superstars healthy and fit, and we at Manduka? Well, our love for yoga is a given.

    So the three organizations joined up Saturday, April 1 in Orlando, FL to host a pre-Wrestlemania yoga event with E! News Host Maria Menounos and 2017 WWE Hall of Fame Inductee and certified yoga instructor Diamond Dallas Page (DDP). And it was epic.

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  • project:OM Spotlight - Schooled in Yoga with Sarah Herrington

    project:OM Spotlight - Getting Schooled in Yoga with Sarah Herrington | The Manduka Blog

    Loyola Marymount University (LMU) will host project:OM’s Los Angeles marquee event, on May 13th, 2017.

    Powering through poses and searching for inner peace is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Yoga. Manduka Ambassador, Program Adminstrator of Yoga Studies at LMU and instructor, Sarah Herrington, shares with us what it means to offer one of the only master’s degree programs in Yoga Studies in the world, and what project:OM means to her.

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  • Survivor Story: Jennifer Winther

    We recently announced project:OM, a mindful movement to drive positive change at an epic level. The inaugural event will be held May 12-14th, 2017 and will unite One Million in the world's largest yoga class to benefit Susan G. Komen®. Manduka Ambassador and breast cancer survivor, Jennifer Winther, shares how her yoga studio became her sanctuary during chemotherapy treatment. 

    Breast Cancer Survivor Jennifer Winther Practicing Yoga

    When did you first learn you had breast cancer?

    I was diagnosed on March 25th, 2011. At the time, my son was in kindergarten, just starting spring break, and my daughter was in pre-school. My mother had been diagnosed with colon cancer when she was around the same age as I was. She died within a year, so it was a terrifying diagnosis. Continue reading

  • 4 Postures to Prepare for Splits

    Manduka Ambassador, Sara Quiriconi, shares four poses to prepare for full splits. Practice alongside Sara in her project:OM online classes. To learn more about joining Sara as one of the One Million to battle breast cancer, visit projectOM.com

    Sara Quiriconi | The Manduka Blog

    Props Needed: Two Manduka Blocks and one yoga mat. (My home practice go-to is The Black Mat PRO for the ultimate knee padding when working on those half splits and lunges). 

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