autumn yoga class gratitude

Thanks to everyone who came out to experience yesterday’s Pop Up Yoga session!  We had 8 participants of all levels, most from the town of Swarthmore, with one yogini visiting from NYC.  The weather was perfect:  the sky a beautiful blue, the leaves just starting to turn, and the sun providing a warming influence.  It was great to see new faces, and greet familiar ones in this pastoral setting.

Sunday Yoginis

We started with a breathing intro, some seated warmup, and then moved into our Sun Salutations, both As and Bs.  After that we did the following flows, with vinyasas between most of them and then hitting the other side (with modifications, and using blocks and straps as needed):

  • Warrior 1 / Parsvottanasana (Intense Side Stretch)
  • Warrior 2 / Triangle (Utthita Trikonasana) / Prasarita Paddottanasana (Standing Intense Spread Leg Pose) 
  • Tree (Vrkasana)
  • Utkanasana (Chair Pose) / Navasana (Boat Pose)
  • Dandasana (Staff Pose) / Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend) / Janu Shirsasana (Head to Knee Forward Bend) / Marichyasana C (Seated Spinal Twist)– both sides
  • Lay on back / Hug knees / Reclining big toe (Supta Padangushtasana)
  • High Plank
  • Locust (Salabhasana)  / Knees to chest / Bridge (Setu Banda Savargasana) / Reclining

    spinal twist (Jathara Parivartanasana)

  • Savasana (Corpse Pose)

We were then treated to a breathing exercise conducted by Brian Jeans on the 365 breath technique, which aims to create heart resonance by timing breath with the heartbeat.  Done 3 times a day, 6 breaths per minute, for 5 minutes each session, this breathing exercise can reduce heart rate, blood pressure, and cortisol levels (that’s the stress hormone) by up to 20%!  Basically, you start by finding your heartbeat (could use pulse in wrist or eventually just be able to locate by feeling) – Inhale, counting 1-2-3-4-5 timed with each heartbeat, and then exhale counting 1-2-3-4-5, with a tiny pause between inhale/exhale. Do this for 5 minutes 3x a day – it ends up being around 30 breath cycles each session.  Thank you Brian, for sharing this with us, and for modeling the poses so well.  All in all, it was a wonderful day. Thanks again everyone, and especially Wallace Ayres who showed up early to help!  She provided the installation assistance for my chakra flag and huge smiles of support.