Taking Care of Mind and Body & Helpful Online Resources
It’s been a long time since last I wrote….
I have had many requests of late. Friends, family, students, all asking for what they can do to nourish themselves in this time of Covid 19. I am honored to be asked, and humbly offer you the following:
There is a glut of information online about how to stay healthy in mind, body and spirit. By this point, we all know to maintain physical distance from one another, keep our bodies and living spaces as clean as we can, eat well, exercise and get fresh air and plenty of rest. To this, I am going to add, that we really don’t need to check the news every hour. I worry that the tendency to do this will only feed our fears and further stress our bodies. Sure, check your news feed in the morning or once some time during the day, but you probably don’t need to do it all day long and especially not right before bed. If you frequent social media sites, check-in with yourself, notice if the time spent there is making you feel calmer and more present, or if it is making you more anxious and stressed. If it is the later, maybe it is time to pick up a book, work on a puzzle, make some art or music or practice yoga or meditation.
I know many of you have asked me to make you a video. I might just do that, but in the interim, there are so many very good offerings out there, I encourage you to explore them.
If you don’t have a home practice, and just want some coaching and guidance and want to feel like you are part of a class, there are numerous online yoga and meditation resources that have been around for years and provide a deep well of information and teachings. Many of these require a paid membership, but in these times, that may be a worthwhile expense. Some of these are free and offer super high quality accessible classes (Veterans Yoga Project and Insight Timer).
These are the ones I tend to return to again and again. Just click on the links to check them out:
In addition, most studios in our area and across the country are now live streaming their classes, as are many master yoga teachers who would normally be hosting large group teacher trainings. Some of these classes are free for the next week or so, some are already fee-based. Most yoga studios and teachers operate on very narrow margins, and as a result of the mandatory closures, they are finding it hard to make ends meet. So taking their classes online enables them to pay their teachers and hopefully re-open their doors once this virus has run its course.
In order to take these live-streamed streamed classes, (practicing with the teacher in real time with the teacher), you will need to click on a link that will take you to a Zoom window in your browser. The process is pretty self-explanatory, but it does require a bit of computer savvy, so do give yourself some time to figure out the technology or you will miss the start of class.
Here are the links for a few of local studios that have been posting classes. I only post these, as I have taken the classes and know the teachers. However, there are many more out there to explore.
Home Practice Essentials:
Before you get started, make sure you have everything you might need near by. Choose how long you want to practice and make a commitment to that. Even 10 minutes a day will make a difference. Get a drink of water or tea. Turn off your phone, ask housemates to join you or at least not interrupt you. Sit down and center yourself before you begin. Remember svasana at the end.
Yes, one of the benefits of going to the studio or gym is that they will have all these wonderful props. Of course you can order your own online, but you can also make do with some common household items.
Yoga Mat – or anything that will keep your feet from sliding out from under you
Straight backed chair – for support and chair-based practice
Yoga Blocks – or books or anything that raises the floor a bit will support your hands
Yoga Straps – or belts, or scarves
Yoga Bolsters – rolled up blankets/towels or pillows or sofa cushions
Yoga Blankets – firm blanket that is not slippery to provide support and comfort
That’s it for now. More to follow soon. If you have online resources you’d like to recommend, please do share. Seems I have and abundance of time these days to practice yoga and meditation.