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Preventing Yoga Injury

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Most of us think of Yoga as the solution to our aches and pains but can Yoga be causing you pain? The answer, in short, is yes.

During this interview with Lora Heiner owner and founder of Inhale Yoga, E-RYT500/E-RYT200 with over 4500 hours of teaching experience. Will be talking about her experience getting injured and learning ways to prevent injury during the yoga practice.

So if you are suffering from injuries and are a fitness enthusiast this episode is for you. If you are not suffering from any injuries and are pushing your body to the extreme this episode is for you. Because we only have one body and we need to take care and full responsibility of it. 

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The solution is not to stop exercising but to move in smarter ways. 

Episode Resources

Inhale Yoga and Fitness

Your Body. Your Yoga - Bernie Clark 

Katie Bowman- Nutritious Movement

 

 

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Embracing Not Knowing

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Life has an undertone of uncertainty. We are not given assurance of anything in this world. Yet we resist not knowing, we try and get ground under our feet and view knowledge and certainty as for the most powerful tools we can have.

When I was in high school I started to notice I had no idea what I wanted to do in my life. Most of my friends were going to college to become Doctors, Architects, and Lawyers. Me? Well, it depended on what day of the week you asked me. I wanted to be everything and study none of it.

I felt so much stress around not knowing and this has been a theme in my life and what I see my clients struggling with as well. The uncertainty of birth, motherhood, death or even ordering from a menu. Causes contraction, anxiety, and stress.

So what do we do about it? How do we embrace not knowing? Which is a principle that is deeply rooted in Buddhism.

My experience has been by not judging it or labeling it as something negative. I once told a teacher I wasn’t sure if I should continue studying with her and she answered “that’s ok. You don’t need to know. Just stay with that” I had never heard a positive response to my uncertainty before. The idea that “its ok to not know”, that we don’t need to have an answer to every situation made my heart lighter and eventually allowed me to make a decision from a place of peace and freedom.

This concept of "not knowing" is something I began to admire most in teachers. The idea that a highly knowledgeable person is aware that no amount of knowledge will grant them with all the answers and the humility it takes to recognize it. 

It’s about cultivating don’t know mind as Frank Osterkaski wrote in The five invitations (I highly recommend this book) “This is not encouragement to avoid knowledge. Don’t know mind is one characterized by curiosity, surprise, and wonder. It is receptive, ready to meet whatever shows up as it is. Don’t know mind is an invitation to enter life with fresh eyes, to empty our minds and open our hearts”.

So we open up to the experience as it comes, like children encountering life. We learn more when we don’t know then when we think we know. Because in reality even if we think we know something it might not even be true.

As I personally continue to open myself to the practice of embracing not knowing. I have some changes coming my way. I’m going back to teaching a weekly Pilates/TRX class. I miss the physical practice, teaching in groups has always been a passion of mine. I moved away from this space because I wanted to help people in deeper ways and I’m moving back to this space because I underestimated the power of sweat, laughter and the awareness that comes from the physical practice. I will be teaching at Inhale Yoga in Del Mar Tuesdays at 5:30pm. So if you are in San Diego lets meet!

My Podcast Toolkit for Life will be hosting mostly interviews with incredible teachers some that might not even know are teachers and less of me talking. I want this to be a platform for people that are not necessarily spreading their word around social media to speak up and share their stories and messages. If there is anybody you know that you would like me to interview please, please send them my way.

My newsletters will probably start looking shorter. I don’t enjoy reading long articles so I won’t make you do that either. I will share with you what inspires me and some of the things I write along the way.  

New Moon Circles I’m standing in the “don’t know”. What do you say?

I also have a couple of really exciting projects that I'm working on. I will share with you once everything is settled. 

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Silence is Golden

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I’m trying to find the words to tell you about my experience doing a silent retreat in Denmark. I’m sitting at my computer after many hours traveling wanting to give you every detail of what I learned and realized. A part of me wants to create bullet points and another part of me wants to leave this page blank because I think that would be the only way to convey what it is that I learned. I’m going to start by talking about the silent aspect of the retreat.

I was afraid of silence as I mentioned on the Podcast I consider myself a talker (I mean I host a podcast for love sake) for the same reason I think silence healed me so much. It felt like I didn’t need to hold on to that sense of my identity. I didn’t need to socialize with every person I encountered as I would normally do. When I sat down to eat, I could just eat and be with my food one silent bite at a time. I didn’t need to wake up and tell my friend who was sleeping next to me what a bad night sleep I had. I could keep my complaints all to myself. It was as if a part of who I believe I am switched off for a couple of days along with all my electronics.

My internal dialog didn’t really switch off. I could even dare to say internally it got loud. I could hear the judgment and resistance arise, my storyteller wanting to write and my self-righteousness wanting to help everybody’s posture as they sat in the chairs listening to the teacher.

Maybe they say “Silence is golden” because it shines brighter on whatever is happening on both the inside and the outside.

The best part of the retreat was nothing that was said but what was left unsaid. We had daily exercises where we would gather in small groups and hear each other speak. Normally this is the type of place where I would feel an urge to give advice or comforting words as I saw tears, fear, sadness, and anger emerge.

But I tried to take this time as an opportunity to hold space in my heart for every person that spoke. I felt a type of healing happening not because I was doing anything but because I noticed how we all want to be heard and how silence is at times the most genuine humbling thing we can give each other. In a way listening without judgment is the ultimate act of kindness and the black belt of meditation.

There was specifically an older man with who I felt a connection. I could sense his sadness in my heart so when the session was over I saw him reading a book and went over to try and hug him. When I touched his shoulder he turned around to look at me with a blank stare. I felt intimidated so I smiled and walked away.

The last day when we shared the most important takeaway from the retreat.  When it was his turn to speak he said "One day when I was reading a book feeling under the spell of my thoughts, an angel touched me and smile breaking the spell and making me realize the compassion in people’s hearts and that I can have that compassion with myself" I was about to cry not because somebody thinks I’m an angel haha but because I felt firsthand how healing it can be to hold space for somebody in my heart and how a gentle touch and truly listening can help a person self-heal more than words could ever do.

So I guess that’s the tool for this week. Less of the talking. More of the truly listening. I skipped the podcast aspect of the post in honor of silence

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Accepting many Truths

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One of the things I have been experiencing lately is that there can be more than one way. More than one truth. That what we think is the right way doesn’t make the other way wrong. Let me give you a couple of examples.

Chogyam Rinpoche was a leading Tibetan Buddhist teacher I remember when I first heard about him. A friend was telling me that he was a great teacher but he was openly drinking, doing cocaine and sleeping with some of his students. I felt completely discouraged to read his books or learn more about his brilliant legacy. Recently I did a course and one of the required books was his book “Cutting through Spiritual Materialism” and my view completely shifted. It was not either or. He drank and was a great teacher. Why couldn’t he be both?

I think most of us have a hard time with this concept of accepting many truths. This happens usually when we feel very passionate about something. But what if there is no right or wrong? Just something in between.

Our partners are the best teachers- because we are constantly right and they are constantly wrong and there is only space for one truth in the table.

My husband and I have been talking about having children. He doesn’t want them yet for a number of reasons. All those reasons sounded like excuses to me and what was real for me was the fact that I’m getting older.

I have done a ton of internal work around it. So much so that I can share this with you today. I did Tonglen, the practice of breathing somebodies pain and giving them our love for like a month. Being open to breathe in his reality has shifted and given a depth to our relationships we didn’t have before. I remember once sitting just listening to him talk, which is pretty unusual because as you can imagine I'm the talker and when he finished he hugged me and thanked me so much for listening. I really hadn't listened to him before that day.

 I have created space in my heart for both of us. One of the things he believes is "the world doesn’t need more people, we are very happy and don’t need anything else in the world" and I believe "we are so happy we should share our love and the world needs more good people" (which is what I hope we can make) 

But what if we are both right? As I give this space in my life to hold more than one truth and trust deeply. I’m sure things will settle the way they need to settle and it just doesn't feel as painful anymore. 

So my invitation today is to create space in your hearts and minds were two ideas that might contradict each other can hold a place. Try skipping the labels.

xx

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Wisdom of the Body

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Today’s episode is all about the wisdom of the body and how we can calm our mind by using our body as an instrument.

You will learn:

-          How body movement began for me

-          How to quiet the mind using the body

-          Using the body as a tool for insight and wisdom

-          Getting to know the body to aid the mind.

Practice: Play a song as loud as you wish and start moving your whole body, you can dance, jump or act like a crazy person. Whatever feels good. When the song stops playing, stand and freeze there dropping into your body if something comes up just acknowledge it. Don't try and analyze anything. 

If you try it out send me a comment. Love hearing from you guys. 

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