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Yoga, health, wellness, and recipes from YogaDownload.com


6 Reasons to Add Yoga to Your Strength Training
6 Reasons to Add Yoga to Your Strength Training
Yoga is well known as a calming and relaxing practice, so if your fitness goals are more performance and aesthetically based, you might have dismissed yoga as not being useful to you. There is a common misconception that yoga is purely for those looking for spiritual or relaxing exercise practice. However, more and more gyms, studios and trainers are incorporating yoga into their everyday fitness practice, as it’s a great exercise to add to your regime to see results. Yoga is a very important part of strength training. When used in combination with other more high impact exercises, yoga can help you to increase your endurance, increase your strength, improve your posture and technique, and improve your balance as well as your flexibility. Adding yoga to your strength training will help you achieve your peak performance, as well as calm your mind and improve your mental balance. Still need convincing? Here’s our top reasons why you should add yoga to your strength training. 1. Increased Flexibility

3 Common Myths about Ganja Yoga
3 Common Myths about Ganja Yoga
Cannabis-enhanced yoga is a thing. Whether popping up in classes across the country, being mentioned alongside other forms of athleticism in articles about CBD-fuelled fitness, or made into fashion with weed-themed yoga leggings, the pairing of the ancient practice and healing plant has become quite the conversation topic in yoga studios across the country. Many people are enjoying the anti-inflammatory, relaxation, and creative benefits of cannabis on yoga. As the first moderner to offer public enhanced-yoga practice, I am so happy to see the marriage of humanity’s oldest methods for relaxation and spiritual insight gain momentum and increased acceptance. Ten years ago, when I started offering a yogic setting for people to get high and do yoga, I googled and found no other mention of the two, other than Chris Bennett’s insightful writing on the history of yoga and cannabis in ancient spiritual practice in India. We’ve come a long way baby! (five thousand years or more, to be exact...).

Practicing Yoga at Night or Morning - Which is Right for You?
Practicing Yoga at Night or Morning - Which is Right for You?
Practicing yoga at night or morning- which is right for you? Yoga, like any exercise, gives you the greatest benefits when you regularly incorporate it into your routine. However you might be wondering which is better, yoga in the morning or the evening. With yoga and getting into a regular practice, it’s important to practice at the time that is best to you. There’s no perfect time that suits absolutely everyone the same, but there’s one golden rule - find a time where there’s no distractions between you and your yoga mat. Whatever time of day is the time that you’ll be the least distracted is the best time of day for you to practice - regardless of whether it’s in the morning or in the evening. Try to practice when you are still feeling awake however!

8 Ways Yoga Improves Your Sex Life
8 Ways Yoga Improves Your Sex Life
Is it true that doing yoga can really improve the quality of your sex life? Of course! If you practice yoga regularly, you have probably already seen this for yourself. Just do not know exactly how yoga does it. Here are 8 amazing ways how with the help of yoga you can improve the quality of intimate life. 1. Yoga Improves Stamina Yoga increases stamina over time. If you practice yoga regularly, your body gradually becomes accustomed to physical activity. In the long run, you become more resilient. The higher the stamina, the more successful you are in bed. 2. Yoga Develops Flexibility

7 Mental Benefits of Yoga
7 Mental Benefits of Yoga
Yoga has a great many physical benefits, and mental too, but an aspect of yoga that can be overlooked in our modern day is the spiritual benefits. Yoga helps with happy living by giving us a way to unite our bodies, minds and breath, letting us connect to our inner selves. This is the spiritual aspect of yoga. There are many spiritual benefits of yoga, but here are a few that you can take into your life off the mat, and help you connect with your spiritual side. 1. Mindfulness

15 Common Mistakes Yogis Make
15 Common Mistakes Yogis Make
Yoga is a beautiful discipline, and yogis are beautiful students and teachers. But, all too often, we forget sometimes that the practice that unites teacher and student can be muddled by what yoga was created for in the first place: the control of our ego. Whether as a student or a teacher, we must understand that yoga is not only a sacred activity upheld by prestige and respect, but that it is, ultimately, an invitation to forgive ourselves and love others while we still have them in this short, short life. We highlight below 15 common mistakes yogis make. May you be blessed enough to acknowledge them and pass this knowledge on for others to benefit. 1. Judging yourself

8 Reasons Why Flexibility is Important for Your Body
8 Reasons Why Flexibility is Important for Your Body
Flexibility is the capability of your body to achieve its full range of motion. It’s needed in most day-to-day activities, even the simplest ones such as bending and walking. If you’re flexible, your muscles remain mobile. We take flexibility for granted when we’re we’re younger, but as we age, our muscles will naturally lose strength, and we might notice ourselves become less supple and more stiff. This can affect our range of movement, especially around the joints. This can have the effect of stiffness in the muscles and joints. This loss of tissue elasticity causes our bodies to tighten and we lose that flexibility. The key reason that we lose flexibility, and we become more at risk of aches and pains is from not being active. This can lead to more permanent issues such as bad posture and lack of muscle function. Keeping flexible is important to avoid this and to keep us in good health and fitness.

Benefits of Hip Openers in Yoga
Benefits of Hip Openers in Yoga
Hip-opener poses and asanas are some of the most popular and requested types. They bring release to areas of tightness that many people suffer from. As there are over 20 muscles that work across the hips, such as adductors in the inner thighs, abductors in the outer thighs, hip flexors and lateral rotators, it’s important to give these a good stretch. Any movement that stretches these muscles is a hip opener, but there are certain poses that give these a deeper release. If you have tight hips, it not only can affect your ability to get into certain yoga poses but can also affect your day to day life.

Happy and Healthy Hips: Unpack Your Saddlebags!
Happy and Healthy Hips: Unpack Your Saddlebags!
This week, it’s time to unpack those saddlebags and release the heaviness and stress weighing you down and impeding your emotions. It takes a lot of work to create the tight hips many of us are experiencing these days. Almost everything we do in our daily lives create tension: from sedentary activities like sitting at a desk and driving to running or even simple everyday stress. We accumulate unprocessed emotions in our hips and we’ve all got one or maybe fifty of those, right? Let’s unpack them. When your hips are both open and strong, you have a balanced center of gravity and are able to maintain not just a healthy spine, but also a happy heart and mind. Physically, your pelvis houses several ligaments and muscles.

Everything You Need To Know About Vinyasa Yoga
Everything You Need To Know About Vinyasa Yoga
Vinyasa Yoga is one of the most practiced styles worldwide, indeed, according to a survey by the Yoga Journal, it is the most popular style amongst yogis. So, why is it that there seems to be some confusion about what Vinyasa is? Is it a style? A sequence? Or is it just a technique? And what exactly does it mean when a teacher says “take a Vinyasa”? Catch your breath before you keep reading, you’re going to need it to go with the Vinyasa Flow and clearly understand this unique style of yoga. To begin with, there are several definitions of the word itself. Some sources affirm it means “connection”; others translate it from Sanskrit as “to place in a special way”; and there are those who say it’s just “flow”. With this in mind, it’s not surprising the broad usage of the term Vinyasa.

10 Tips to Master Hard Yoga Poses at Home
10 Tips to Master Hard Yoga Poses at Home
Practicing yoga at home is a great way to get some exercise in if you can’t make it to a class. All you need is a mat! However, if you’re trying to master some tricky yoga poses and you just can’t get over that hurdle, being on your own can be a hindrance. Here’s our top 8 tips for practicing and mastering hard yoga poses at home. 1. Create the right space Having a dedicated space for yoga will make practicing at home so much easier. Try to find a space to unroll your matt that’s quiet and peaceful, with plenty of space around to move your body freely. Remove any obstacles if needed. Try to find an empty wall that you can use as a prop for poses that require a bit of extra support. Maybe you’d like to light a candle to make the atmosphere even more relaxing and inviting.

Yoga & Alternative Medicine: A Perfect Combination for Vitality
Yoga & Alternative Medicine: A Perfect Combination for Vitality
You can do this without the use of potentially harmful pharmaceutical drugs or invasive treatments. By combining your regular yoga sessions with alternative medicine, you can get even more benefit from your yoga practice. Here are three forms of alernative medicine that can increase quality of health and vitality for brand new and experienced yogi's! Acupuncture & Yoga

Why Yoga Helps You Trust Your Intuition
Why Yoga Helps You Trust Your Intuition
Have you ever gone against your own intuition? How did that work out for you? Have you ever felt so numb to your internal signals that you didn’t even sense what your intuition is communicating to you? Or have you ever consciously overthrown your own intuition and gut instincts for your desire to be loved and accepted? Maybe you overrode your intuition hoping to prove that you were a perfect match for a partner, a job, a community, rather than sensing and questioning if the relationship, job, or community was a good match for you. Please remember there is nothing to prove in love and acceptance, and that true love and acceptance must begin within. We must start with ourselves and trust our intution, which starts on the inside. Yoga reminds us that the actual external experience is a reflection of our inner resonance. Yoga states that we will continue to attract experiences to bring awareness to any unconscious patterns that keep us from true connection, trust and joy.

5 Powerful Fusion Yoga Hybrid Workouts to Try
5 Powerful Fusion Yoga Hybrid Workouts to Try
You can get into your best shape by combining yoga with other fitness workouts and routines. Yoga hybrid workouts have become all the range as of late, as an active lifestyle is becoming more and more popular. As it’s becoming more apparent the benefits a regular yoga practice can give you, there’s more ways to incorporate it into your regular workout. Here are some ways you can combine yoga poses with other fitness methods, to get into the best shape you can and move in more ways! If you’re adding a few moves to your regular workout, or adding some weights or dance moves into your yoga practice, there’s a yoga hybrid out there for you. Mixing it up can increase your endurance, strength, and most of all make your practice fun. Here are five unique fusion yoga forms, that are worth giving a try! Anti Gravity Yoga If you’ve ever fancied yourself a bit of an acrobat, aerial yoga is the hybrid for you.

A Beginner's Guide to Ashtanga Yoga
A Beginner's Guide to Ashtanga Yoga
This week we highlight the incredible practice of Ashtanga yoga. Ashtanga yoga is a modern rigorous, disciplined, and traditional style of yoga. It is comprised of 8 limbs, with asana (the physical yoga pose limb), being a set sequence of standing and seated postures, that create inner heat, refine your focus, and challenge you physically, while keeping a single pointed focus. Basic Ashtanga sequences are well-rounded, and also feature many forward bends, the most inward facing family of yoga poses, where we meet ourselves. If you're feeling stagnant in your practice and want to take it to the next level, or feel you're craving some consistency in your yoga practice (and maybe life), give Ashtanga a try. You might find these practices are ones you can return to over and over again, as no matter how many times you practice the Ashtanga sequence, there is benefit, power, and progress. Enjoy the challenge and power of Ashtanga yoga this week, with four unique takes and versions of this transformative and powerfully simple style of yoga.

9 Benefits of Yoga for Athletes
9 Benefits of Yoga for Athletes
Yoga is a key practice not just on it’s own, but to compliment other activities and sports. Many professional sporting teams and athletes use yoga practice to compliment their training, or include it as a key part of it. If you play sports regularly, trying yoga can boost your performance in a wide range of ways. Yoga will improve your physical and mental state, letting you push yourself to your limit in your training. Yoga can also balance out strength and development that can become imbalanced if you just practice one type of sport. This can also help reduce injury. Push away any thoughts of yoga just being about flexibility and contorting your body - yoga helps your muscles grow and works parts of your body that are underused in most people’s daily life. It also helps you stretch out any areas of tightness or pain. Here’s some of the benefits practicing yoga can have for athletes.

5 Olympic Athletes Who Do Yoga
5 Olympic Athletes Who Do Yoga
Even though yoga is not considered an Olympic sport, at least not yet, the reality is that it already is a big part of the Olympics. Yoga is a fundamental component of the workout routine of many athletes who are striving for gold during these summer games, and it might very well be one of the key factors for them to finish on top of the podium. It’s no secret that yoga is a great complement for other physical activities. Some even think every athlete should do yoga (Link: http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-4806/Why-Every-Athlete-Should-Do-Yoga.html) to increase strength, balance, flexibility and mental control. That’s why it comes as no surprise that more and more competitors are taking advantage of the benefits it brings to their discipline. From elastic gymnasts, to big rugby players, they are all bringing the lessons learned on the mat to their respective sports.

The Benefits of Warrior Poses
The Benefits of Warrior Poses
The series of warrior poses are the foundations of a strong and solid practice of asana. Warrior poses are among the most common poses in yoga practice, and help with balance, stance and hip opening. Warrior poses are great for nearly every type of body and skill level, are easy for beginners to get to grips with, while still being a great pose for building up strength, confidence, and feeling like, well a warrior! As we do warrior poses more and more often, it’s easy to forget the benefits they can give our minds and bodies. We’ve taken a look at some of the common variants of warrior pose, and the benefits these can give you. Warrior 1 Warrior 1 is a pose that will give you more flexibility in your hips, strengthen and tone your legs when practiced often.

5 Tips for Taking Those Perfect Yoga Photos
5 Tips for Taking Those Perfect Yoga Photos
Yoga is the perfectly balanced embodiment of strength and grace. Each yoga pose is an achievement and, like any other milestone, deserves to be celebrated. And what better place to share the achievements of your yoga journey than through photos, whether you share them with your friends on social media, or just to enjoy yourself? Whether you’re just starting out with your yoga practice or already an advanced practitioner, you know that even the simplest yoga poses require a ton of work. When taking a photo of your yoga poses, the ultimate goal is to make it look effortless and beautiful. Here are five ways you can create the perfect yoga photo for your Instagram, teaching portfolio, or just for fun! 1. Pick a pose and shoot in burst mode

The Psychological Benefits of Yoga
The Psychological Benefits of Yoga
We all know that practicing yoga can have great physical health benefits, but it can also benefit your psychological and mental health state. There’s no denying the high that you get after a successful yoga class or practice, and that zen-like state of feeling calm, grounded and centered. Yoga is a great practice if you’ve been feeling down, negative, or scattered with your thoughts. Practicing yoga has a way of subsiding those negative emotions, bringing you into a state of calm and peace. Yoga also helps you feel a connection to your body, and helps you become more aware of any thoughts, emotions and physical feelings around your mind and body. This sensation of mindfulness can help improve our emotional health, and lead into a calm state. The psychological benefits of yoga have lead to the practice being regarded as a great practice for those suffering from stress, anxiety, and other mental health problems. Yoga changes your brain.

8 Advanced Yoga Poses to Work Towards
8 Advanced Yoga Poses to Work Towards
Feeling a little unchallenged by your yoga practice? Perhaps you’re finding that you can do each pose without struggle, and you’re finding it all a little tedious. It’s time to shake up your practice! With yoga there’s always more advanced variations, or different ways to change up your routine. While you might have seen some advanced yoga poses and instantly thought you’d never achieve them, if you’re finding yourself in a yoga rut, giving yourself a more difficult pose to aim for is a great way to bring some purpose back into your practice. Here’s our run down of some trickier poses to aim for, whether you’re a master yogi, or a relative beginner. 1. Eka Hasta Vrksasana - One Handed Tree Pose

10 Ways Yoga Can Help Productivity
10 Ways Yoga Can Help Productivity
While we hear a lot about how yoga is great for winding down and relaxation, you may not know that yoga can help productivity. Yes, yoga is a great escape from our busy working lives, but there are many ways that practicing yoga can help us get more work done, increase concentration and send your productivity levels soaring. Here’s 10 ways yoga can help productivity at work. Yoga Relieves Stress Stress is one of the major factors that can affect your health and work productivity. When we’re feeling stressed we sleep less, any illnesses or physical conditions can be exacerbated, and our mental health suffers too.

The 7 Scariest Yoga Poses for Halloween
The 7 Scariest Yoga Poses for Halloween
It’s the season to be spooky, even in your yoga practice! The good news is, you can get the heebie jeebies right from the mat. Some of your favorite asanas are inspired by some rather haunting ideas. Don’t be surprised - yoga is about the balance of opposites: solar and lunar, hold and release, and of course, light and darkness. So we’ve put together a sequence of the creepiest, crawliest postures to get you exploring your spooky side. Here are the 7 scariest yoga poses to get you in the mood for Halloween! 1. Cat Pose: arch, hiss and strike fear into the heart of the superstitiously inclined.

Everything You Need To Know About Yin Yoga
Everything You Need To Know About Yin Yoga
If you haven’t tried Yin Yoga the classic “what are you waiting for?!” question comes to mind. Yin Yoga can be described as a treat to the body, a slowly moving meditation, a way to connect with what’s really going on internally. When I do a lot of cardio and strength training workouts, Yin Yoga is my sanctuary. If I am not that active, Yin Yoga is a relaxing time where I can check in with how my body is feeling. So, what exactly is Yin Yoga? Let's take a look at this unique and healing practice! Yin Yoga is influenced by the philosophies of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Yin poses are created with the intent to improve the flow of chi, the subtle and invisibly energy that some believe run through the meridian pathways in the body. Whenever there is an excess or lack of chi, the body is said to become unbalanced. Yin poses are working with meridian lines to help circulate chi throughout the body and release stagnant energy to help the body function optimally.

5 Tips How to Do a Handstand & the Benefits
5 Tips How to Do a Handstand & the Benefits
Handstand is a pose that might seem unattainable or impossible at first sight. However, with persistence, technique, and patience, anyone can learn how to do a handstand with time. Learning to engage the shoulders, core, and arms properly, will increase and build steadiness over time. From there, handstand becomes easier to refine. They key, in practicing and integrating these simple tips, is patience. Anyone who takes the time and is patient, can learn how to do a handstand, regardless of how hard it may seem in the beginning. Here are 5 simple and concise tips for learning how to do a handstand: