Aesthetic vs. Functional Yoga: Finding Your Path on the Mat
Hello, Yoga Friends!
In our colorful world of yoga, there are many paths to explore. Today, let's chat about two distinct approaches: aesthetic yoga and functional yoga. As a middle-aged, queer, alignment-focused yoga teacher, I see beauty in both but also recognize their unique differences. So, grab your mat, and let's dive into what sets these two apart.
Aesthetic Yoga: The Art of the Pose
Aesthetic yoga is like the yoga you often see in magazines or on social media. It's visually stunning, with perfect poses and picturesque backgrounds.
Focus on Form:
Aesthetic yoga emphasizes the external appearance of yoga poses. It’s about achieving that picture-perfect pose that looks like a work of art.
Challenges and Considerations:
While it's beautiful to look at, this approach can sometimes lead us to push our bodies beyond their comfortable limits. It might also lead to comparing ourselves with others, which isn’t what yoga is truly about.
Who Might Enjoy It:
If you’re someone who loves the challenge of mastering complex poses and enjoys the visual aspect of yoga, aesthetic yoga might resonate with you.
Functional Yoga: The Body’s Wisdom
Functional yoga, on the other hand, is all about how your body feels in a pose rather than how it looks.
Alignment and Sensation:
This approach focuses on alignment and the internal experience of yoga. It’s about understanding and respecting your body’s unique structure and needs.
Benefits and Safety:
Functional yoga reduces the risk of injury and is incredibly inclusive. Whether you’re young, old, athletic, or new to exercise, functional yoga adapts to you.
Who Might Enjoy It:
If you're more interested in the health benefits of yoga, how it feels in your body, and personal growth, functional yoga might be your path.
The Middle Ground
The beauty of yoga is that it's not a one-size-fits-all practice. You might find yourself drawn to the artistic expression of aesthetic yoga one day and the body-awareness focus of functional yoga the next.
Listening to Your Body:
The key is to listen to your body. It’s okay to admire the beauty of a perfect pose, but it’s also important to honor your body’s limits and needs.
A Personal Journey:
Yoga is a personal journey, and your practice can be as unique as you are. Whether you lean towards aesthetic, functional, or a mix of both, what matters most is that your practice brings you joy, health, and peace.
In the end, whether you choose aesthetic yoga, functional yoga, or a little bit of both, remember that the heart of yoga is self-discovery and self-care. It’s a practice that invites us to explore and embrace our unique selves, on and off the mat.
So, dear yogis, I encourage you to explore, experiment, and find the style (or styles) that resonate with you. And most importantly, have fun with your practice!
Your Yoga Guide on this Journey
Exploring the Diverse World of Yoga: A Style for Every Soul
Hey Yoga Enthusiasts,
As someone who's spent years breathing, stretching, and living the yoga life, I've come to appreciate the rich tapestry of styles that yoga offers. Each style is like a different color, adding depth and beauty to the yoga world. Today, I want to take you on a tour of these various styles, especially through the lens of someone who loves alignment and anatomy. So, grab your mat, and let's explore together!
1. Hatha Yoga: The Foundation Stone
What It Is: Hatha is often considered the mother of modern yoga. It's a slow-paced practice focusing on basic postures and breathing.
Why It's Great: Perfect for beginners, Hatha is a fantastic way to get acquainted with yoga poses and breathing techniques. It’s also a wonderful way to understand alignment and how your body moves in each pose.
2. Vinyasa Yoga: Flow and Let Go
What It Is: Vinyasa means “to place in a special way.” It's about flowing from one pose to another, synchronized with your breath.
Why It's Great: If you're someone who loves a little rhythm and dynamic movement in your practice, Vinyasa is your go-to. It's also a great way to understand how the body moves in a sequence and how poses can seamlessly transition into one another.
3. Ashtanga Yoga: The Power Player
What It Is: Ashtanga is a rigorous style of yoga that follows a specific sequence of postures and is linked by breath.
Why It's Great: It’s challenging and requires discipline, making it perfect for those who enjoy a more structured practice. As an alignment and anatomy enthusiast, I love how Ashtanga teaches precision in poses.
4. Iyengar Yoga: The Detail Detective
What It Is: Iyengar is all about precision and detail in alignment. Props like yoga blocks and straps are often used to perfect poses.
Why It's Great: If you’re like me and geek out on getting every little alignment detail just right, Iyengar will be your playground. It’s also fantastic for understanding the anatomy behind each pose.
5. Bikram Yoga (Now referred to as Hot 26): The Hotshot
What It Is: Bikram consists of a specific series of 26 postures and two breathing exercises, practiced in a room heated to about 105°F.
Why It's Great: For those who love a good sweat and a consistent routine, Bikram can be quite rewarding. It’s also a good way to explore how heat affects muscle flexibility and alignment.
6. Yin Yoga: The Deep Diver
What It Is: Yin focuses on passive stretches, with poses held for longer periods.
Why It's Great: If you’re looking to dive deep into the connective tissues and joints, Yin is a beautiful practice. It’s also a perfect style to complement the anatomy knowledge as it gives you time to feel and understand each stretch deeply.
7. Restorative Yoga: The Gentle Embrace
What It Is: Restorative yoga is all about relaxation. Poses are held for several minutes, often with the support of props.
Why It's Great: Perfect for winding down and letting go, Restorative yoga is also an excellent opportunity to understand the body’s relaxation response and how alignment can aid in releasing tension.
8. Kundalini Yoga: The Energy Alchemist
What It Is: Kundalini focuses on awakening and channeling the kundalini energy through the body. It involves dynamic movements, breathwork, and chanting.
Why It's Great: For those interested in the energetic and spiritual aspect of yoga, Kundalini can be a transformative experience. It’s also fascinating to see how energy flow interacts with physical alignment and anatomy.
9. Power Yoga: The Strength Builder
What It Is: An offshoot of Ashtanga, Power Yoga is a vigorous, fitness-based approach to Vinyasa-style yoga.
Why It's Great: If building strength and endurance is your goal, Power Yoga is your ally. It’s also a brilliant way to explore how muscle groups work together in dynamic movements and poses.
10. Chair Yoga: The Accessible Friend
What It Is: Chair yoga modifies traditional yoga poses so that they can be done while seated, making yoga accessible to everyone.
Why It's Great: Chair Yoga is wonderful for those with mobility issues or for practicing yoga at the office. It teaches us how alignment can be adapted to different body types and abilities.
The beauty of yoga lies in its diversity. Each style offers something unique, and yet, they all share the common thread of connecting mind, body, and spirit. As someone who loves the nitty-gritty details of alignment and anatomy, I find every style has its way of revealing more about our incredible bodies.
No matter which style you choose, remember, it's all about your personal journey. Explore, experiment, and most importantly, have fun with it!
Until Next Time,
Keep exploring, keep learning, and stay aligned with your yoga practice.
Meditation: Letting It Happen, One Breath at a Time
Hey Lovely People,
Today, let's chat about something near and dear to my heart: meditation. I often hear folks say, "I'm doing meditation," but here's a little secret – meditation isn't really something you 'do'. It's more like something that 'happens' to you, like falling asleep. You set the stage, get comfy, and let it happen. As a middle-aged, queer yoga teacher, I've seen so many people, from all walks of life, discover the magic of just letting meditation happen. And guess what? You can too!
Meditation: More Than Just Sitting Still
First off, let’s bust a myth: meditation isn't just sitting in silence with your legs crossed and trying to empty your mind. It's about being present, noticing your thoughts (they're totally normal, by the way), and then bringing your attention back to something like your breath or a sound.
The cool thing about meditation is that it’s like giving your brain a little vacation. All day, our minds are like busy bees, buzzing from one thought to another. Meditation is the time when we tell our busy bees to take a break and just chill.
Benefits: Why Meditation is Your Friend
Meditation is amazing at helping to lower stress. It’s like telling your body, “Hey, it’s okay to relax now.”
Hello, Good Sleep!
Having trouble sleeping? Meditation can be like a gentle lullaby for your mind, helping you drift off to dreamland more easily.
Focus Like a Laser Beam
Regular meditation can help you focus better in your day-to-day life. It’s like training your brain to stay on one channel instead of flipping through a hundred!
Emotional Rollercoaster? Not Anymore!
Meditation can help smooth out those emotional ups and downs. It’s like having an inner cushion that softens life’s bumpy rides.
“But I’m Bad at Meditation!” – Nope, You’re Not!
I hear this a lot: “I tried meditating, but I’m just bad at it.” Here’s a little truth bomb – there’s no such thing as being bad at meditation. If your mind wanders (which it will, trust me), that's not failing. That’s just your brain doing brain stuff. The magic is in noticing that and bringing your focus back. It’s like a bicep curl for your brain.
Consistency is Key: Keep Showing Up
Meditation is a practice, and like anything else, it gets more familiar the more you do it. It's not about having a perfect, thought-free session every time. It’s about showing up, again and again, even if it’s just for a few minutes. Think of it like watering a plant. A little bit every day goes a long way.
Creating Your Meditation Space
Find a comfy spot where you can sit or lie down without too many distractions. You don’t need anything fancy – a chair, cushion, or even your bed works. Set a timer for however long you want to meditate. Even five minutes is a great start!
Then, just focus on your breath, a word, or a sound. When your mind wanders (and it will – that’s okay!), gently bring your attention back. That's it! You're meditating!
Remember: It’s a Journey
Meditation is a journey, not a destination. It’s about the experience, not the outcome. Each time you meditate, you’re taking a step towards a calmer, more centered you. And the best part? Everyone can meditate – it's totally inclusive.
Join Our Meditation Circle
If you’re curious about meditation or looking for some friendly guidance, come join one of our meditation sessions. We’re all about creating a kind, caring, and chill space where everyone can explore meditation at their own pace. I have lots of sessions on YouTube or try an immersive experience with Frik-Shuhn's 50 hour Meditation & Pranayama Training.
Until Next Time, Keep breathing and smiling, and remember, meditation is about letting it happen, one breath at a time.
Your Chill Meditation Guide, Colynn
Unveiling Peace: How Yoga Nidra Helps Release Trauma
Introduction: In the quest for inner peace and healing, Yoga Nidra emerges as a powerful tool, especially for those grappling with trauma. At Frik-Shuhn Yoga, we've seen firsthand how this ancient practice can transform lives. Let's delve into the world of Yoga Nidra and its profound impact on trauma release.
Yoga Nidra and Trauma Release:
Understanding Yoga Nidra:
Yoga Nidra, or yogic sleep, is a state of conscious deep relaxation. It's more than just a relaxation technique; it's a meditative journey through our layers of self.
The Role of Koshas in Healing:
In Yoga Nidra, we explore the five koshas (layers) of our being: the physical body, energy body, mental body, wisdom body, and bliss body. This exploration helps in identifying and releasing deeply held traumas, often residing beyond the reach of our everyday consciousness.
Yoga Nidra for PTSD:
A Newer Approach to Treatment:
Traditional PTSD treatments often rely on verbal processing, which can be challenging. Yoga Nidra offers a non-verbal, body-centered approach, allowing individuals to access and release trauma without the need for re-telling or re-living traumatic experiences.
The Science Behind It:
Research shows that Yoga Nidra can help recalibrate the nervous system, reducing symptoms of PTSD such as anxiety, insomnia, and depression.
Benefits of Yoga Nidra:
Physical and Mental Relaxation:
Yoga Nidra promotes deep relaxation of the body and mind, reducing stress and enhancing overall well-being.
The practice provides a safe space for emotional release, which is crucial for those who have experienced trauma.
Accessible and Inclusive:
Yoga Nidra is accessible to everyone, regardless of physical ability or experience with yoga.
Frik-Shuhn Yoga's 50-Hour Yoga Nidra Training:
Deepen Your Understanding:
Our comprehensive 50-hour Yoga Nidra Training is designed to equip you with the knowledge and skills to guide others in this transformative practice.
Conclusion: Yoga Nidra is more than just a relaxation technique; it's a journey to self-healing and peace. Through the gentle exploration of our inner layers, we can release trauma and find a state of serenity that resonates in all aspects of our lives.
Discover the Power of Yoga Nidra: Ready to explore the transformative power of Yoga Nidra? Join us at Frik-Shuhn Yoga for an immersive 50-hour training that will change not only how you teach but how you live. Click here to embark on this journey.
Yoga's Not Just for Show: Why Feeling Beats Looking Good
Let's chat about something near and dear to my heart (and my yoga mat): the difference between making yoga look good and making it feel good. You've probably seen those picture-perfect yoga poses on Instagram, right? That's aesthetic yoga for you. But here in our cozy yoga corner, we're all about functional yoga. It's less about impressing others and more about connecting with yourself.
Aesthetic Yoga: Looks Good on Camera, But...
Aesthetic yoga is like those glossy magazine photos – stunning, but not always real. It's about hitting poses that look great, sure, but they might not feel great. And that's a problem.
Ever felt like you're not 'doing yoga right' because you can't twist yourself into a pretzel? Yeah, that's the downside of chasing those picture-perfect poses.
When Your Body Says 'Nope':
Pushing your body into a pose it's screaming 'no' to? Ouch. That's when yoga stops being yoga and starts being a competition – and not the fun kind.
Functional Yoga: Where Feeling Good is the New Looking Good
Alignment Over Appearance:
Here’s the deal with functional yoga – it’s all about how you feel in a pose, not how you look. It's about listening to your body, finding your alignment, and saying, “Hey, body, you’re the boss.”
And guess what? It's for every body. Tall, short, big, small – if you've got a body, you're good to go.
No Injuries, Just Bliss:
By focusing on how poses feel, we're taking care of our bodies, reducing injury risks, and actually enjoying our practice. It's like giving your body a high-five.
Real Talk from Your Yoga Buddy:
Been There, Felt That:
Ever been in a class, trying a pose, and it just feels plain wrong? But everyone else is doing it, so you grit your teeth and bear it? Been there, done that. Not fun.
In our world, if a pose feels off, we change it. We adapt. Because yoga is about feeling good, not just looking good.
Feeling It, Not Forcing It:
In our classes, it’s all about tuning in to what your body’s saying. We make poses work for us, not the other way around. It’s pretty liberating, actually.
Wrapping Up: So, there you have it. Yoga doesn’t have to be a fashion show. It's about feeling grounded, connected, and, honestly, just not giving a hoot about what others think. It's your practice, your rules.
Come Feel Good with Us: If you’re into feeling great and taking care of your body (while having a bit of fun), drop by for a class. Let’s focus on what feels right, together.
Stay Bendy (Or Not), Your Yoga Pal
Rolling Out the Welcome Mat: Yoga for Every Body
Hey There, Yoga Family,
Let's chat about something that's been on my mind a lot lately. You know, yoga is supposed to be about balance, acceptance, and peace. But, let's be real – sometimes, it feels like you've got to be a thin, flexible, young, and typically white gal to fit in. I'm here to shake that up a bit.
Why Yoga Needs a Reality Check
You've seen it, right? Those picture-perfect yoga studios with their Instagram-worthy poses. It's like yoga turned into a competition for who can be the most zen while rocking Lululemon. Here's the thing – I'm a queer, bigger-bodied person, and I've been in those rooms where I felt like I stuck out like a sore thumb. Not cool.
Talking the Talk, But Not Walking the Walk
Ever been to a class where the instructor's words felt more like a script for a fitness model shoot than a real-life yoga session? Yeah, me too. Sometimes it feels like they're teaching from a place of ego rather than empathy. I've heard instructions and comments that made me think, "Who are you actually talking to?" Because it sure wasn't me or half of the folks in the room.
Flipping the Script on Yoga Spaces
So, here's my approach – let's make yoga chill again. In my classes and retreats, everyone's welcome. I mean it. Queer, straight, big, small, young, old, injured, Olympian – you get the picture. Yoga is about connecting with yourself, and how can you do that if you don't feel welcome in the first place?
Keeping It Real
In my world, yoga is less about hitting that perfect pose and more about feeling good in your skin. I use language that's for everyone, offer modifications for every body type, and keep things light. A little humor goes a long way, especially when you're trying to twist your body like a pretzel (which, by the way, is totally optional).
The Proof Is in the Pudding
I've seen what happens when you open the doors wide. People come in, they relax, they smile, and they connect – not just with yoga but with each other. That's the magic. That's the yoga I fell in love with, and that's what I'm here to share.
Join the Fam
If you're tired of feeling like you don't belong in the yoga world, I've got you. Come to my class, hit up one of my retreats, or just drop me a message. Let's make yoga what it was always meant to be – a place for every one of us.
Stay Bendy (Or Not),
Exploring the Depths of the Soul: The Transformative Power of Past Life Regressions
Exploring the Depths of the Soul: The Transformative Power of Past Life Regressions
In the realm of spiritual exploration and personal development, past life regression emerges as a profound technique that delves into the mysterious corridors of the human soul. This practice, often enveloped in mysticism and curiosity, seeks to unveil the hidden narratives of our past incarnations, offering a unique perspective on our current life's journey.
The Essence of Past Life Regression
Past life regression is rooted in the concept of reincarnation, an ancient belief prevalent in numerous cultures and religions. It posits that the soul is eternal, transcending time and physical form, and undergoes a cycle of rebirths. This process of reincarnation allows the soul to evolve through diverse experiences across different lifetimes.
The technique of past life regression typically involves a therapist guiding an individual into a hypnotic state. In this relaxed and focused state of consciousness, the individual is able to access memories and experiences believed to be from past lives. These recollections can be vivid and detailed, often evoking strong emotional responses.
The Therapeutic Potential
The transformative power of past life regression lies in its potential to unearth the deep-seated origins of present-day challenges. Emotional blockages, unexplained fears, and recurring patterns of behavior may find their roots in experiences from past lives. By bringing these to light, individuals can gain profound insights into their current life's struggles, fostering a deeper understanding of their personality, relationships, and life purpose.
Moreover, past life regression can offer a sense of closure or healing. Reliving past experiences and understanding their impact can lead to emotional release and resolution, allowing individuals to move forward with greater clarity and peace.
A Journey of Self-Discovery
Past life regression is not just about uncovering past traumas or resolving present issues. It's a journey of self-discovery, providing a unique opportunity to explore the soul's journey across time. Individuals often discover strengths, talents, and qualities they possessed in past lives, which can be incredibly empowering. This revelation can instill a sense of continuity and purpose, reinforcing the belief in the soul's enduring nature.
The Skeptic's Viewpoint
Despite its popularity, past life regression is not without its critics. Skeptics argue that the memories retrieved during regression are not genuine recollections but rather constructs of the imagination, influenced by cultural and psychological factors. Critics also point out the lack of scientific evidence supporting the existence of past lives.
However, proponents of past life regression argue that the therapeutic benefits and personal transformations experienced by individuals cannot be disregarded. Whether these memories are real or symbolic, they contend, the healing and insights they facilitate are what truly matter.
A Path to Spiritual Enlightenment
For those on a spiritual path, past life regression offers more than just psychological benefits; it's a gateway to spiritual enlightenment. By understanding the soul's journey over multiple lifetimes, individuals can cultivate a deeper sense of compassion, empathy, and interconnectedness with the universe. It encourages a broader perspective on life's challenges, promoting acceptance and a sense of harmony with the natural cycle of life and death.
Past life regression remains a fascinating and polarizing topic in the realms of psychology and spirituality. Its transformative power, however, is indisputable for many who have undergone the experience. Whether viewed as a therapeutic tool, a means for self-discovery, or a path to spiritual enlightenment, past life regression continues to intrigue and inspire, offering a unique lens through which we can explore the depths of the soul.
Certainly! Here's an additional excerpt to include in the blog post, incorporating information about Frik-Shuhn Yoga's Past Life Regression Facilitator Training:
Frik-Shuhn Yoga's Past Life Regression Facilitator Training
For those intrigued by the transformative power of past life regression and interested in exploring this practice both personally and professionally, Frik-Shuhn Yoga offers an exceptional Past Life Regression Facilitator Training program. This comprehensive course is designed to equip individuals with the skills and knowledge needed to guide others through past life regression sessions effectively and compassionately.
Frik-Shuhn Yoga, known for their holistic approach to wellness and spiritual development, has developed a curriculum that blends theoretical understanding with practical application. The training delves deep into the principles of reincarnation, techniques of hypnotic regression, and methods for facilitating a safe and supportive environment for clients. Participants will learn how to help others access past life memories, interpret these experiences, and integrate the insights gained into their current life for healing and growth.
What sets Frik-Shuhn Yoga's program apart is its commitment to ensuring that facilitators are not just technically proficient but also emotionally and spiritually prepared to handle the profound experiences that often emerge during past life regressions. The training emphasizes the development of empathy, intuition, and ethical responsibility, ensuring that facilitators are equipped to offer a deeply transformative experience for their clients.
The program is suitable for both beginners and experienced practitioners in the field of spiritual and therapeutic work. Upon completion, participants will be certified as Past Life Regression Facilitators, enabling them to offer this powerful service in their professional practice.
For those feeling called to embark on this path, either for personal exploration or to assist others in their journey of self-discovery and healing, Frik-Shuhn Yoga's Past Life Regression Facilitator Training is an excellent opportunity. To learn more about the program and to register, you can visit their website through the following link: Frik-Shuhn Yoga's Past Life Regression Training.
This training not only offers a chance to deepen your understanding of the soul's journey but also opens the door to becoming a guide for others in their quest for self-awareness and spiritual enlightenment. It's an invitation to be part of a transformative process that can have a profound impact on the lives of those you work with, fostering healing, growth, and a deeper connection with the timeless journey of the soul.
Today I Ate an Ant
Mar.6 - Journal Entry
Summer Vosburgh is travelling today. My thoughts go to her. Sitting here with no internet, I just trust. Funny how it happened, seems perfect. AND scary. Denise is gone and my neighbours leave tonight. Some nerves happening for me about being alone. Again, more of what I need. :O
Mar.10 - Journal Entry
Forest dance. Hmmmm. What can I say about ceremonial fire dancing in the forest from midnight until sun rise? Can I not get into it because I invited someone in? Hmmmm.
I think back to when I said yes to this, to forest dance. I had no idea what it was or what would happen. When I got here, my initial thought was, what the fuck did I sign up for? I tried to blame Kylie Judge & Leah Barsher, but they wouldn't let me get away with that. I was like, what did you get me into & Kylie was like, dude - I remember suggesting it and you said yes before I even finished my sentence... so what did you get yourself into. LOL.
What this brings up for me is this interesting relationship we hold with fear and with trying to make everything perfect. If Iknew what Forest Dance was, I would not have gone AND even in going, I was uncomfortable and can't quite tell you if I loved it, but the experience was one of the best experiences of my life. I am so glad I said yes. Big lessons.
The people and community are amazing and the lessons rich in every person I experienced. Some insight: What would it be like to be in a body that doesn't really reflect who you are, but yet still does so fully? Like on a big level? When I think of stretch marks or the things I have hated on my body, it feels like it has become something I have just grasped onto to hate myself. The insights so beautiful, this place incredibly healing, conversations so deep.
What comes up so fully for me is expectation, appreciation, gratefulness, faith, and love. My interactions with others are showing me more about people and the the types of people I am currently attracting, which is so great in addition to those already in my life <3 I hold the intention to continue to attract more in this mindset, more that hold deep lessons and connection, more that can help me to guide myself even further.
PS - Today I ate an ant.
Mar.1 - Journal Entry
Yesterday was a day of insights. I did over 8 hours of yoga. Over 3.5 hours of physical asana & 2.5 hours of dancing and then ended with an astral projection meditation. What I recognized was more worth issues around the actions I have been taking in my personal & professional life. I see the impact that it has on me vibrationally to be with a person that has a partner. AND without anger, I see the way they are using me to feel better about themselves by bringing me into their entanglement.
I see how not being number 1 or the one or the next main interest is a cop out for me. I don't have to put myself out there. I can always blame any rejection on outside circumstances & yet... it decreases and impacts my self worth even more because I am the other. I am allowing myself to be used. I have been doing it unconsciously - aware that there may be another person involved in this energetic exchange, but putting that responsibility on the person I am with. My friend Denise pointed out though, that if we are all one and I am skirting the responsibility of finding out this person has a partner or if I am aware that there is another... this impacts us all... Deeply! We are to raise each other up, not tear each other down.
Today I take responsibility... AND I see my worth.