Tag Archives: yoga

Power of Finding your Own Tune

With all of the cold, dry air this time of year, you can find sinus relief in a very unexpected remedy – humming.  Studies have found that humming daily can increase airflow between nasal cavities and prevent the inflammation that creates sinus infections.

As a yogini and enthusiastic “ohmer”, I have find the vibrational effects of chanting ohm or other mantras have always helped to clear the sinuses, relieve pressure, and open up spaces throughout the body.   Scientists are beginning to confirm the many health benefits of a chanting practice, specifically in creating the the space for a quiet mind and awakened spiritual energy.

But even if it’s not a chanting practice, say even singing a favorite Otis Redding tune, provide the opportunity to uplift and transcend constraining narratives of the mind.  When finding your own tune, whether that is humming, singing, or chanting- you can know that like many things that lift your spirits and are good for the soul, it it good for you.

Exciting BellySatva Updates!

So here we are, the official end of summer. For me it’s always such a bittersweet time of year because I’m never quite prepared to say goodbye to summer days.  However, I find that fall seems to arrive exactly when I need it, providing the space to settle in and savor. 

This summer I have been working on a number of projects, and it seems like now I am finally beginning to see all of these efforts materialize into something tangible.

Professionally, BellySatva is taking shape as I join an inspiring team of holistic health practitioners under Pekoe Acupunture.  Spearheaded by locally renowned acupunturist Nicole Mires. Pekoe is not only literally expanding into a larger space to accommodate its growing client base, but it is expanding the scope of its services to meet their needs. The new location will have a lovely waiting and reception area, four treatment rooms for massage, acupuncture, holistic health and nutritional coaching, Thai yoga therapy, community treatments, transformational life coaching, private and semi private yoga classes, meditation, Tai Qi martial arts, workshops, and more! I will begin to hold office hours twice a week at Pekoe, providing health and nutrition coaching, Thai yoga therapy, and private yoga services.

My teaching schedule will become more structured as I begin teaching regular classes weekly at Epic Yoga, an exciting new yoga studio that master DC yoga instructor and powerhouse Emma Saal is  opening in October in the heart of Dupont Circle.  Stay tuned for scheduling.
In another exciting venture, I will join my friend and incredible artist and healer Heather Lundy in the lauch of her central Virginia-based studio, The Nest, offeringdynamic workshops in yoga and nutrition

Additionally, I will teach children yoga in four after-school enrichment programs throughout the DC metropolitan area withClifton Enrichments.

On a personal note, my wedding is coming up next week (AH!).  Perhaps one of the most time-consuming projects I have taken on in the past couple months, I am excited that it is all underway and I am on the cusp of this new phase in my life.
Please enjoy the contents of this months’s newsletter, including new workshops, an essential health and beauty tip straight from the locally-celebrated Beauty Buff, Avantika Wagle, and my recipe for the ultimate grillable veggie burger, which took me all dang summer to master.
Be well and much love.

Going Back to Middle School

Recently I began teaching yoga to inner-city middle school kids four days a week with Higher Achievment (HA), a DC-based enrichment program that prepares middle school kids from underserved backgrounds to pursue college education.  When I took on this assignment, I must say I was anxious.

I’d been apprentice teaching children’s yoga for some time now, but usually in more priveledged elementary school classrooms.  Teaching kids was difficult at first.  Any sign of fear or weakness, the kids sniffed it out and ate me alive.
Now here I was not only going back into middle school – the time in our lives most of us want to forget – but working in one of the nation’s most notorious school districts with kids who may, as my mentor Edie cautioned me, perceive me as “a skinny white girl from a well-to-do background” and resent me.  I recalled scenes from the HBO series The Wire that ventured into Baltimore schools where teachers struggled to prevent violent outbreaks in the classroom, let alone get through a lesson plan.
I went into the program prepared for battle, conjuring up my best no-nonsense gym teacher persona, ready to establish my authority.  I was pleasantly surprised however to see how eager my kids were to show off what they already knew about yoga and learn more.  They also took well to responsibility- never had to tell them more than once to roll up their mats and place them away neatly after class.
Following the pillars of the HA curriculum, I pushed my kids to find their power and their voice as leaders in their community. It started first with asking them to demonstrate postures and lead their classmates in how to get there.  Then I started teaching them sun salutations and prompted them to lead their classmates through the sequences. “Stand tall and proud,” I instructed, “and speak from your belly.”
It was during these exercises that I realized how shy my kids truly were. Typically, the kids would have no problem finding their voice as they snickered or rabble-roused in the background while I or another student was speaking.  But these same kids who were wise-asses and whiners on the sidelines, when given the floor and asked to lead activities, would shrink into themselves, whispering instructions under their breath, and second-guessing their authority.
It was baffling to me, but ultimately, I knew the pattern all too well.  When I was at my corporate job, it was easy for me to bitch about office policies that made no sense, or the lack of upward mobility, or any other common workplace grievance.  Now I am self-employed and I find myself failing to step up to the challenges of establishing my own business- shy to get myself out there as an authority on issues of health and wellness and frustrated with new media marketing. Now that I have the floor with the mike on, I find myself throwing blocks in my own way, second-guessing and shrinking away when I feel challenged and overwhelmed.
In that way I find myself honoring my kids, knowing that we’re on this path to self-realization together.  While I empower them to be leaders in their communities, I am inspired to step up to challenges in my own life.
That said, I am finally pursuing my website makeover by contracting it out, teaching more visibly at my home studio Flow Yoga Center, and slowly befriending new media. Stay tuned for these updates and more.  Until then,
please visit the BellySatva facebook page and *like* me ;-)!
As always would love to hear from you.
Much love.