Yoga as Medicine

This is a great way to start a series of articles I will be writing on Yoga & Exercise as medicine. One of the biggest hurdles we yogi’s have is getting people  to understand what Yoga Therapists actually do and how beneficial yoga can be.  And the key is getting Insurance companies to endorse yoga the same way it does other complementary care modalities such as massage therapy and chiropractic care. Well it looks like the insurance companies will have to sit up and take notice now, listen as  Mark Bertolini, chairman and CEO at Aetna Ins talks about using Yoga as a means to over come pain when conventional medicine wasn’t working. Please read this article & watch the video and pass it on to all the CEO’s and esp to the corporate wellness directors out there. Lets get the word out about the importance of Yoga and in bringing Yoga to the work place.

Here is a quick link to the video interview


And here is the full article.

Oh Shanti


We’ve come a long way baby

Yes that’s a Fisher Price kids cassette recorder. In 2005 I was living in Nashville and getting ready to move back to Chattanooga. At one of my very last classes in Nashville a student of mine, Beverly, asked if I would mind if she recorded the class so she could practice after I had gone, it was very sweet and of course I said yes. I was thinking she would bring a tape recorder to class or a digital recorder even, so I thought I would teach from the front of the room and not stray too far from her device. So I was totally surprised when she comes to class and takes this child’s recorder out of her gym bag and said she couldn’t find her ‘real’ recorder. Everyone rolled with laughter as I walked around class, teaching, while trying to hold the recorder in one hand and the bright red plastic microphone in the other. All the time trying to teach and talk without using my hands. What I would give to hear that recording after all these years. Beverly, if your listening …….
Well we have come a long way baby, and to be honest I don’t know if my kids ever had a Fisher Price recorder, but I do have a very cool digital bad boy recorder and so I have recorded a short meditation for you to link to. It’s my gift to you so you can listen anytime you need a break.
 You should be able to open this file below and listen right away, I say ‘should’ because I am new to  ‘cloud hosting’ so lets hope this works, so sit back, enjoy and relax. 
 If you have ‘Media Player’ click on the title… OR  to play directly from the site click the url 🙂
Relaxing Marble Meditation or click the link below

Here a Yogi, there a Yogi, everywhere a Yogi!

I love New Year  yes I know its already March, but the “new to yoga” crowd has been going strong this year and doesn’t show any signs of slowing down! If you’ve been hanging out at gym, fitness center or yoga studios for a while then you know what new year means for those of us that work there. Busy Busy Busy! The holidays are over and folks schedules are getting back to normal so they start coming back to classes on a regular basis. And then there are those that spent the holidays pigging out and slacking off  “Guilty as charged”.

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The’re back too.  And of course there are all those wonderful New year’s resolutioners (yes thats a word). So classes are kicking it, crazy full and lovely! So I thought I might give you a few tips on how to navigate a crazy full yoga room.

Classes have been so full, I can barely walk around without knocking over a water bottle or kicking a yoga block across your mat.  It does make moving around the room more interesting.  That said, it is good to know what to expect so here are a few pointers.

  • Don’t worry if your mat is 6 -8 inches from your neighbors, look at it this way you’re making new friends, your breathing each others air so you better learn to like each other.
  • Stagger your mats, you a little more forward, them a little back. Create space.
  • Be aware of your mat neighbors.  I do try to keep the use of lateral movements to a minimum in close quarters, but still be open to modifying your practice with smaller movements.  Sometimes less really is more.
  • Keep with you only what you need – blocks, straps and a blanket should do it.  If you want to have water, make sure its in a non breakable bottle with a lid.
  • Have fun.  The more people in the room, the more energy.  All this energy can lift your practice to unexpected heights.
  • If you are new to Yoga in general, remember you don’t have to “do” everything, just because your mat neighbor puts his/her foot in some interesting places doesn’t mean you have to.
  • Speaking of feet in crazy places, if you are gifted and can put your foot in interesting places (i.e Flip dog) keep in mind you might be invading someones space. Sometimes lees is more.
  • Oh and if you wear classes and sometimes take them off during class, put them somewhere they wont get stepped on, on the edge of your mat, I have been known to tuck mine down my top, they get icky but not broken and in savasana, lay them on your chest or belly.

And last ‘Be prepared to share”…space, breath, air and Yogi toys. Sometimes where you practice may not enough blocks/blankets/bolsters ect to go around. Someone may need ‘it’ more than you.


DSC_0504 Bhakti Fest

These have to be pic’s of the worlds biggest yoga class ever 🙂 WOW

Om Shanti