If you’ve ever tried to meditate and found it hard to concentrate on nothing or boring to just sit around, you are not alone. Meditation is difficult – even for people who do it regularly. But it’s worth the struggle considering people who meditate tend to have better health outcomes. That said, if you’re trying to add meditation into your routine, it doesn’t have to be as intimidating as it sounds. Here are some simple tips to help meditation seem more manageable. Continue reading
As a student, nothing beats the feeling of falling into final rest after a really intense yoga practice. Even if the practice wasn’t THAT intense, final rest still feels great. Again, as a student, I usually want nothing more than to lay there for a long time (usually longer than the instructor thinks is adequate). Why? Because it’s relaxing. I get to soak up the benefits of my practice. (Read more about why students love final rest here.) Continue reading
Few things give you the same feeling as laying on your back after an hour of strenuous physical activity. At the end of each and every yoga practice, you get that sensation. We may not practice Warrior I or Bridge or Crow every class, but we certainly do make time for final rest. It’s during this time that we get to absorb the benefits from our practice. Continue reading
Whether you’ve been practicing yoga for years or you’re just starting out, it’s important to remember that yoga is a journey. It’s a twisting a winding road that sometimes leads us to unexpected places – places we never imagined. On this journey, it’s quite possible that what used to work for your body may not work anymore or the reason you originally started practicing is no longer your main concern.
There are many poses in yoga that are designed to invigorate the body and mind. Many poses awaken the body so practitioners can make that mind-body connection through vigorously physical movements. While many poses and sequences of poses can help with this awakening, there are others that are designed specifically to allow the body and the mind to begin to quiet and calm down. It is in these poses that we create sequences for bedtime yoga. Continue reading
If you’ve enjoyed a yoga practice at MunA Yoga, you’ve noticed that we always offer our students access to essential oils at the beginning of class. A few people have asked the big question: Why?
Using different essential oils during a class can be a wonderful way to enhance a yoga practice by stimulating the senses even further. Here are a few different scents you can use to add depth to your yoga practice.
- Peppermint. If you’re want to awaken your mind, breath and muscles, peppermint is the essential oil for you. Use peppermint on sore muscles to allow more blood to flow to those regions. As a precaution, don’t rub peppermint near sensitive areas of the body (including around the eyes or too high up the inner thighs) as this will cause a burning sensation and other irritation.
- Lavender. Opposite to peppermint, lavender oil calms the mind with its light, floral scent. Use this essential oil to allow both your mind and body to become more relaxed as you practice.
- Eucalyptus. This essential oil acts as a natural decongestant and is perfect for reaching maximum breathing during your practice. Because our breath is so vital, being able to inhale and exhale completely is important to any practice. If you find it difficult to achieve these deep breaths, this oil can help you.
If you’ve never tried using essential oils in your yoga practice, don’t be intimidated to try. Depending on your mood and your body, you may want to experiment with a few different oils to find the one, two, three or more that work best for you. If you’d like to learn more about essential oils, contact us today!
(Do you want to know how to apply essential oils during your practice? Here’s a blog post all about the three different ways to add aromatherapy to yoga.)
So you want to supplement your yoga practice with essential oils; that’s great! They can be a great way to add depth and awareness by making the sense of smell more prominent. There are three main ways to incorporate aromatherapy into a yoga practice.
- Diffusion. To diffuse an essential oil, add a few drops of essential oil to water. You can buy a diffuser that can help maximize the oil’s circulation, or you can simply heat the water in a pan before adding it to a bowl with a bit of the precious oil. The steam from the water will then diffuse the oils.
- Misting. Creating your own mist is a great way to cover a lot of area quickly and efficiently. As an added bonus, misting a mat or room can help clean and deodorize. To make your own, combine 10-20 drops of your favorite scent(s) into half a cup of water. After it’s mixed, pour into a spray bottle and enjoy!
- Massaging. For more direct contact, rub the essential oils into your skin. We recommend the wrists, neck and temples for most essential oils. This will give you the most intense benefits, including opening up the breathing passageways, soothing sore muscles and stimulating the mind.
Discover what adding essential oils into your practice can do for you! If you try one of these methods and don’t like it, give essential oils another chance. Try a second or third method before disregarding aromatherapy completely. Maybe massaging the essential oil directly on your skin is too strong, make your own mist instead or attempt to diffuse. And with so many different essential oils to try, your possibilities are endless.
(To answer even more of your essential oil questions, be on the lookout next week. We’ll talk about which essential oils to use in order to maximize the senses and enhance your practice even further.)