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


A Brief History of Yoga
A Brief History of Yoga
Millions of people across the world practice yoga everyday, and it’s becoming a constantly evolving and changing practice that has integrated into the modern world. But what is the history of yoga, and how has it shaped our modern day practice? Yoga’s extensive 5,000 year old history is rich, intertwining with religion, philosophy and exercise, and as such, there are a few theories about the origin of the practice. Some people suggest that the origins of yoga stem from a Bronze age civilization called the Indus Valley Civilization, from northwest South Asia, while others believe yoga was around when the ideas of Hinduism and Buddhism were taking shape. There were many different periods of yoga, and they have all shaped our modern practice today. The first of these is the Vedic Period. This was the wra when the Vedas, which are four ancient scriptures, were created. These holy writings were created by Brahmans, ancient indian priests, and are a collection of hymns that actually contain the oldest known teachings about yoga that are still available today. The Sanskrit word ‘Yuj’, which is the root of the word ‘yoga’, first appeared in one of the Vedas.

Happy 14th Birthday YogaDownload!
Happy 14th Birthday YogaDownload!
While 2020 may be the year many people around the globe discovered the joy of practicing online yoga at home, YogaDownload.com is celebrating 14 years of being a pioneer in the online yoga space. Founder, Jamie Kent first created YogaDownload.com with audio yoga classes designed to reach students who couldn’t make it to a studio. Whether the barrier was location or cost or time, her vision was to share yoga with the world by providing world-class teachers, affordability, and ease of use. If you’ve been with us from the beginning or just discovered how life-changing practicing on your own terms can be, thank you for being here!

20 Top-Rated YogaDownload Classes of All Time
20 Top-Rated YogaDownload Classes of All Time
This week, we are thrilled to celebrate the 14th year of YogaDownload.com. This site and community would not be continuing to grow if it wasn't for all of you showing up regularly on your mat, from all over the world for the past 14 years! Thank for you showing up for yourself, and also supporting this global community and resource of online yoga in the process. As part of our celebration, here is the list of the 20 top-rated classes of all time! We've produced over 1700+ classes since our inception 14 years ago. Your honest ratings and reviews over the years have helped us to continue creating classes you want, based on your valuable feedback.

Tomato and Nectarine Gazpacho
Tomato and Nectarine Gazpacho
In today’s soup, the sweet nectarines meet up with ripe homegrown tomatoes. It may seem a bit strange at first – especially with the onion in the mix, but I promise – it is so so so delicious! As there is no real cooking involved, all the ingredients must be at their best ripeness. During the wintertime in Estonia, where I live, this kind of soup would be impossible to enjoy as the store-bought winter tomatoes taste like plastic. So at the moment, I am enjoying as much fresh produce as possible. This recipe here is one of those where it is not important to follow the ingredients' exact amounts. I give you a recipe, but feel free to play around – if you only have 5 tomatoes, go with 5. If you have 3 nectarines waiting to be used up – use them here. The same with seasoning – just make sure to taste the soup after the first seasoning and decide if you may like a little more vinegar or little more salt. With seasoning, I recommend adding a little at the time as it is easy to add in more, but once you add too much, it is not possible to remove the extra seasoning.

Insight & Inspire Sessions: Iana Velez Publisher of NY Yoga Life Magazine
Insight & Inspire Sessions: Iana Velez Publisher of NY Yoga Life Magazine
The Insight & Inspire interview series feature different people who are bringing ideas to life and sharing something with the world that they are passionate about, whether it's through teaching yoga, creating a business, doing work in their community, creating art, hosting events, bringing to life new wellness products, or more. These interviews highlight real people who have brought ideas to life and give real-life insight and inspiration on their processes and journey. This session is with the Publish & Editor-in-Cief of NY Yoga Life magazine, Iana Velez. What are you passionate about sharing with the world? Why does this motivate you?

New Moon & Astrology Forecast: October 2020
New Moon & Astrology Forecast: October 2020
This New Moon is heavily imbued with Virgo energy and comes into pedigree with Mars and Mercury in retrograde. The New Moon is working to unfold a level of moksha-liberation within the personality and in relation to spirituality that is tethered to the material world. It is within the unseen, and is asking you to go beyond the ego constructs. On August 15th we had a celestial dharmic-purpose alignment, to align one to their inner gifts and create greater unity collectively and individually. During September and October the planets have been working to unfold these layers. The layers that mask your inner gifts, the delusion of separateness, and the ways in which we held ourselves away from one another and our truth.

Vinyasa Flow with Electronic Music: Dance Party!
Vinyasa Flow with Electronic Music: Dance Party!
We don’t know about you, but it’s been a hot minute since we went out dancing! With 2020 keeping us close to home and dance parties closed down, we are itching for something different. This week we’re thrilled to share 4 new Electronic Music Session classes from some global record labels that will complement your practice and allow you to find your flow on a deeper level. We’re ready to synchronize our breath to our movement and add another element to our customary practices. Vinyasa Flow yoga and electronic music can be perfect partners in your quest to dance with your breath, quiet your mind, and soothe your soul. Vinyasa means to place in a special or sacred way and is an excellent way to build strength, balance, flexibility, and connection. This style of yoga focuses on linking breath and movement to create a moving meditation, which often feels like a powerful dance. Vinyasa Flow classes are varied and creative and each one is as unique as each instructor’s individual style and sequencing. Settling into the rhythm and flow helps you find harmony within yourself and with the world around you.

Peppermint & Blackcurrant Cake Roll
Peppermint & Blackcurrant Cake Roll
As you probably know by now, then most of my recipes are extremely simple and seldom require a precise measuring, but here is one exception. Baking is a science, and this is the only type of cooking where not following the exact amounts can have catastrophic results. Believe me – I am the type of cook who loves playing around and changing up at least half of the ingredients, also when baking, and let’s just say that all of the changes do not work ☺ So follow the given amounts here, please. I originally planned to make a regular round cake with the same ingredients, but as I wanted to take the cake to a friend's place, carrying around a roll seemed more comfortable. And it was! To make the roll more interesting, I wanted to make a green base. I have baked a peppermint cake before, but as it was too strong in mint the last time, I decided to reduce the amount this time. I am very happy with the taste this time, but the result is not as bright green as I would have liked so that I will add a little spinach for extra greenness for the next time.

7 Tips on Picking the Right Yoga Teacher Training for You
7 Tips on Picking the Right Yoga Teacher Training for You
Ok. So you’ve finally decided to do a yoga teacher training. Now comes the big decision - which one to choose? There are thousands of teacher trainings out there today, and in a world of increasing choice, the decision is more difficult. How do you choose a Yoga Teacher Training? Here’s a step-by-step guide:

Honor the Lunar Cycle with Moon Bathing
Honor the Lunar Cycle with Moon Bathing
The moon is an intoxicating symbol of nature’s rhythm. Its cycle of phases, from which all cycles of life from birth to death emerge, have been revered by cultures across the globe from time immemorial. This gentle cycle of waxing and waning is said to nourish and protect all that is sacred on Earth. Such rhythms of nature have a profound impact on our lives, and our physical and emotional cycles are perpetually impacted by them. The lunar cycle is particularly influential because the moon rules the flow of water, both on the planet and within us. Since around sixty percent of our bodies are made up of water, the moon has a powerful effect on our physical form, as well as our thoughts, emotions and dreams.

Heal Your Shoulders, Neck, & Upper Back: 2-Week Program
Heal Your Shoulders, Neck, & Upper Back: 2-Week Program
It’s safe to say that we’ve all experienced pain in our shoulders, neck, and upper back at some point. Tension in your shoulders and neck is one of the most common complaints with just about everyone! Whether you spent too much time in front of the computer or slept wrong and woke up with a crick in your neck, having pain in your upper body can truly ruin your day. The physical causes can develop from heredity, injuries or accidents, or poor posture. But for many of us, the manifestation of pain in this area of the body stems from issues beyond skin deep. We’ve got an amazing new program to address these issues and prevent further discomfort. The variety of classes over the next two weeks will not only help you relieve stress and tension in your physical body, but dig beneath the surface into your emotional and mental states. The root of the problem is often predominantly emotional and upper back issues often relate to experiencing a lack of emotional support from significant people in your life.

Nightshade-Free Curry
Nightshade-Free Curry
One of the core tenets of the Conscious Cleanse is removing common inflammatory foods from our eating rotation for 2 weeks to allow our systems to detox and find underlying food sensitivities. Tomatoes fall under the category of nightshades, so during our 14-day cleanse, we keep them off our plates because they can cause inflammation. Just like many people are sensitive to gluten, dairy, soy, and other common allergens, some people have a reaction from eating nightshades, including tomatoes.

Perfectionism On & Off the Yoga Mat
Perfectionism On & Off the Yoga Mat
Do you long to perform better on your yoga mat? Maybe you’ve seen an impressive peacock pose on Instagram and feel shameful that your pose doesn’t look nearly that graceful? Well, I know the feeling; I’ve been there, too. But listen up, y’all. Contrary to popular belief, yoga is NOT about how flexible you are, your cute leggings, or your ability to stand on one hand. Everybody is built differently, and in an ideal world, each pose would be specifically instructed to fit each body. For example, the shape of my particular hip sockets will never ever – not even after twenty MORE years of practicing yoga – allow me to come into a safe lotus pose. And currently, my massage practice takes all I’ve got out from my wrists and leaves nothing else for arm balances.

8 Reasons Why Yoga is Good for Children
8 Reasons Why Yoga is Good for Children
Adults undoubtedly have busy lives these days, but our kids also do. School all day, after-school activities and homework, friend and family time and weekend plans! Practicing yoga is good for adults with stressful lives, and it can also benefit kids for all the same reasons. We all know that yoga can help to relieve stress and anxiety, improve your sleep, and mood, as well as keep you fit. Yoga can also teach your kids to be mindful, which is important to teach at a young age. It’s important to teach our kids ways to handle stress in their lives - which will help them as they grow into adulthood.

Yoga for Kids
Yoga for Kids
How old were you when you started practicing yoga? If you began as an adult, you know how transformational yoga can be in all aspects of your life. Maybe you stepped onto the mat when you were a child, and if you did––lucky you! Yoga offers a myriad of benefits for your mind, body, and spirit, and for many of us is what helps keep us balanced in our lives. During 2020, many children are home instead of in school and need all the gifts yoga has to offer more than ever. Just as yoga helps develop strength, flexibility, balance, and equanimity for adults, it also offers vital tools for children to live healthier happier lives. One of the primary ways yoga helps children is by encouraging self-love and self-acceptance. Yoga teaches kids more about their own bodies and minds. One of yoga’s messages is to remind us we are all different, yet perfect as we are. If children understand that whatever shape or size they are is acceptable, they may avoid body image pressures that inundate us. If children can learn to love themselves from a young age, they are better equipped to handle all the negative messages society can present to them.

Quick & Creative Sushi Bowl
Quick & Creative Sushi Bowl
Sometimes it happens that you have been planning to cook a particular recipe for days, but once you get to cooking it, you find out that one of the main ingredients is missing! This is what happened with my plan to make sushi today. The missing ingredient was nori sheets, and as I realized I am all out of those only when the rice was already cooking, I got creative and made sushi bowls instead! No nori needed here, and even if I say so myself, the result was even better than the sushi would have been. I never add edamame or wakame to my sushi, but they worked amazingly as the toppings for this bowl.

10 Valuable Benefits of Yoga Proven by Scientific Studies
10 Valuable Benefits of Yoga Proven by Scientific Studies
Have doubts about the effectiveness of yoga on your overall health? Here are 10 amazing benefits of yoga that are supported by scientific studies. The practice of yoga has existed on this planet for a long time. It was developed by the Indus-Saraswati civilization in India nearly 5,000 years ago. Yoga was acknowledged by the UN, and the world celebrates International Yoga Day on June 21 every year. It is now practiced nearly all over the world for its positive effects on the individual’s well-being. But does science support the effectiveness of this millennia-old practice? Well, for years, a lot of people have questioned the effectiveness of yoga practices, and their suspicion was justifiable. If someone tells you that certain lifestyle changes can fix a chronic illness that medication cannot, you are supposed to be surprised! However, researchers have found significant pieces of evidence that support several powerful benefits that yoga has to offer. Here are 10 evidence-based benefits of yoga, proven by science.

7 Essential Yoga Poses for a Strong Core
7 Essential Yoga Poses for a Strong Core
In order to build a strong core, you need to work a variety of muscles, all the way from your hips to shoulders. The core does not just refer to your abs. It refers to the different muscles that run the length of your torso. There are great yoga techniques that can be done in order to build your core muscles. Not only do they help to make you more fit. They also increase your will power, stamina, and overall quality of life. Here are 7 Essential Yoga Postures for a Strong Core:

5 Reasons to Practice Yoga First Thing in the Morning:
5 Reasons to Practice Yoga First Thing in the Morning:
Just one small positive thought in the morning can change your whole day. -Dalai Lama Any time is a great time for yoga, as long as you can fit your practice into your busy life. Sometimes, despite the best intentions, your day can run away from you. Work and personal matters can take precedence and suddenly, it is bedtime and you didn’t step onto your yoga mat. Here are 5 reasons why practicing yoga first thing in the morning can set you up for your best day.

Roasted Carrot & Chickpea Arugula Salad
Roasted Carrot & Chickpea Arugula Salad
We often get asked for tips to help with meal prep and sticking to your clean-eating goals, so we decided to start a series of blogs with tips to help you thrive in your new clean-eating life! Today we’re focusing on how optimal refrigerator organization can simplify your meal prep. One of the most common things we hear from people all the time is, “I don’t have enough time to make healthy food.” We totally understand! Many of us have this idea that grabbing food from a restaurant or salad bar will be quicker than eating at home.

Surround Yourself with People Who Fill You Up with Happiness
Surround Yourself with People Who Fill You Up with Happiness
Surround yourself you people who top you up. Fill your friendship bag with the people who are there in an instant when you need them. The people who you laugh the loudest with and those that you laugh along, with even when they are laughing at you! The friends who make you realise and feel just how special you are.

Yin Yoga for Peacefulness
Yin Yoga for Peacefulness
Peace can become a lens through which you see the world. Be it. Live it. Radiate it out. Peace is an inside job. —Wayne Dyer September 21st is International Day of Peace and an excellent reminder that to find peace, it is imperative to create it from the inside out. One of the greatest lessons yoga teaches us is how tuning into our minds, hearts, and bodies helps us polish the lens through which we view the world. Our perspective is key and even if we aren’t in control of external events, we can gain control of our thoughts and emotions.

Tips and Ideas for Healthy Habits at Home
Tips and Ideas for Healthy Habits at Home
A nutritious diet and plenty of exercise can undoubtedly promote good health, but what about the daily habits you practice at home? From your everyday routine to getting the proper sleep, there are several things you can do to promote and enjoy a healthy lifestyle. It's said that good habits begin at home, and this is absolutely true whether it relates to your career, your relationships, or your physical health. Read on to discover some things you can do to start practicing smarter, healthier habits while at home. Why Healthy Habits are Important

Quick Chanterelle & Zucchini Pasta
Quick Chanterelle & Zucchini Pasta
This simple pasta dish takes a maximum of 20 minutes from start to finish – basically, just the time you need to boil the whole wheat pasta once you need to bring the water to boil. I usually always prepare pasta from scratch. Yes, it does take a little time, but for me, rolling out pasta is therapeutic, and I don't mind taking the extra time. However, I also always have a packet of dried whole-wheat pasta in the cupboard. We are enjoying beautiful weather right now in Estonia, where I live. It makes sense to spend all these beautiful days outside, so what better time to save time on cooking!

Insight & Inspire Sessions: Interview with The Founders of Moon Bath
Insight & Inspire Sessions: Interview with The Founders of Moon Bath
The Insight & Inspire interview series feature different people who are sharing something with the world that they are passionate about, whether it's through teaching yoga, a business or product, putting on events, doing work in their community, or more. These interviews highlight real people who have brought ideas to life and give real-life insight and inspiration on their processes and journey. This session is with the founders of Moonbath, Sierra Brashear & Dakota Hill. How did Moon Bath come to be?