Transformative Yoga

The love of makeovers is as American as deep-fried Oreos at a country fair. We celebrate the teacher turned self-made millionaire, the former convict turned master chef and the Red Sox after they finally won the World Series. We love novelty almost as much as we love the idea of something, anything, turning into something better.

But much like fried Oreos, sometimes that change can turn the original into something unrecognizable that shouldn’t be consumed at all.

In 2017, it is fair to say that yoga has become the American zeitgeist. Studies show that between 20-37 million Americans are practicing regularly. Undoubtedly, this huge surge in popularity is the concept of yoga in the past few decades.

Sure there is still your standard Iyengar and Ashtanga yoga class. But now there is prenatal yoga, yoga for children, and silent yoga for those who want an enhanced meditative experience.

For the more athletic, there is boxing yoga and yoga for martial arts. For more adventurous, there are other more niche styles of yoga. Such as oguing yoga, amba yoga, rap yoga, stiletto yoga and the ultimate—Polga (Pole dancing and yoga). 

In fact, here is an experiment type the word yoga and any noun you can think of into a search engine. More likely than not, there will be a class for that.

This isn’t altogether a bad thing. “People need yoga…” says Tara Stiles. founder of Strala, a fusion Tai Chi and yoga company. Fonda claims that Stiles makes yoga more and less “esoteric”. Stiles, by the way, is a thin, white, beautiful former model who gained popularity through her Youtube channel. 

As the perfect oppositional counterpart to Strala, there is DDP Yoga. Named for its founder, Diamond Dallas Page, a former professional wrestler. DDP Yoga was originally conceived as Yoga for Regular Guys. Throughout his televised run, Page claims that he was formerly the type of guy who wouldn’t be caught dead doing yoga now professes that his method is different. “not your mamma’s yoga.”

Both styles embrace the physicality but reject the stereotypes that have been arbitrarily forced prior. Ironically, DDP rejects the style that Strala represents: feminine and upscale. Strala rejects the philosophical aspect of yoga. Both forms clearly rebel against the New Age/Hippie/Granola vibe that has haunted yoga since the 60s. Both transformed yoga into another form of weight loss program.

With these styles, students don’t get a chance to stretch their minds past stereotypes and extend into uncomfortable space.

These forms of “yoga” have been dipped into the batter of marketing, deep-fried in capitalism and served to the hungry masses as something familiar—yet brand new

How Chakra Energy Affects Your Mood

What is a Chakra? Sanskrit translates this word into “wheel of light” in English. The idea is that there are many chakras throughout our bodies, with seven that are the main ones. Each chakra is related to our energy and mood.

  • Root Chakra

The root chakra relates to our sense of groundedness and rootedness. It allows us to feel like we belong on earth. If it is in balance, we should feel connected, strong, able to trust, safe, and grounded. If it is out of balance, then our mood can be affected in less than favorable ways. We can feel angry, irritable, worrisome, easily annoyed, and insecure. 

  • Sacral Chakra

The sacral chakra is the center of our reproductive health, sexual energy, and emotion. If it is in balance, we can express and receive a range of emotions, feel compassionate and considerate of others, exhibit kindness, feel connected to others, experience excitement, and be creative. However, if it is out of balance, we could feel fearful and vulnerable in relationships, addicted to substances, anxious, stressed, and regretful. Sacral chakra healing is essential for a proper balance.

  • Solar Plexus

The solar plexus chakra is said to be where we form our personality and cultivate our instincts. If in balance, we should feel whole, self-sufficient, powerful, confident, and assertive. When out of balance, we may feel self-conscious, powerless, and rejected. 

  • Heart Chakra

Moving into the chakras, we come to the heart chakra, which relates to our love, humanity, and spirituality. If in balance, we should feel love, grateful, trusting, accepting, prideful, and empathetic. If it becomes out of balance, our mood may become jealous, bitter, fearful, angry, or envious. 

  • Throat Chakra

The throat chakra is believed to connect us to our true ability to communicate and be accountable for our decisions. When it is in balance, we should experience the ability to communicate and express ourselves freely and also to be able to remain silent when necessary. When our throat chakra is out of balance, it is common to experience fear in speaking our truth due to worries of being judged or rejected.

  • Eye Chakra

The eye chakra is said to be our wisdom center. This is our connection to our intuition. If it is balanced, we should feel clear and focused able to differentiate between truth and falsity. When it becomes out of balance, we may want to reject spirituality feel volatile and lack self-awareness or reflection. Hence, we must consider eye chakra healing as soon as possible.

  • Crown Chakra

The seventh and last chakra is the crown chakra. It is the energy center that is said to connect us to mother earth. It is beyond our ability to understand with our minds. When in balance, we feel the knowingness of our connection to the divine, and we are able to feel calm, trusting, and empowered in this knowing. If it is out of balance, we are likely to feel confusion and even depression. 

Each chakra affects the mood in specific ways. Tune into how your emotions and moods may relate to each of these chakras. They present great opportunities for focused meditation and therapies that use chakra-specific colors, crystals, asana, herbs, and sounds. 

3 Reasons Why a Leotard is Figure-Flattering

Leotards have been making their way to the forefront of modern yoga fashion for quite some time. Yogis realize their immense benefit and comfort in their yoga practices, but they wonder if they could really pull off such a tight and revealing style. Many of them choose to wear the leotards only for home practices to prevent feeling self-conscious among their classmates. However, the benefits of a leotard are numerous and you should be able to feel confident wearing the leotard out and about.

The good news is that a leotard can be very figure-flattering for every body type. Take a closer look at how you might be able to benefit from a leotard in your daily practice.



They come in every shape and style.

Did you think that leotards were a one-size-fits-all item? Fortunately, they come in several different cuts and styles that allow yogis to choose the shape that will work best for them. Whether you have a pear-shaped body or a muscular outline, you can find a leotard that is specifically cut to flatter your body. You can try on multiple shapes and styles to see which one suits you the best. Look for some with sleeves, wider straps, high necklines, and more.

You can choose your length.

One of the primary reasons yogis feel uncomfortable wearing a leotard for yoga practice is because of how high it tends to cut on the groin. You can correct some of this problem by choosing one of the more modern leotards that allow you to choose your own length for the bottom. The traditional cut is always available, but you can often find leotards that come with shorts or full pants on the bottom.

Alternatively, you could test out what works best for you. By wearing a traditional leotard that cuts high on the groin, you could put a pair of shorts or yoga leggings over top of the leotard for fuller coverage.

It provides perfect coverage.

A leotard isn’t going to come up when you bend into a forward fold or fly over your head during an inversion. You can find a lot more peace of mind for attempting difficult poses in a leotard. While this doesn’t necessarily make the leotard figure-flattering, it does prevent you from exposing yourself to your classmates. In many ways, this coverage is a figure-flattering aspect of having a leotard. You can keep your body more hidden and private during yoga class wearing one of these leotards.

Wearing a leotard requires a lot of bravery from most yogis who want to attempt this new trend. It’s possible to find a figure-flattering leotard for every body shape and style using some of these guidelines. Remember that yoga is about loving your body and taking care of it. As long as your leotard makes you feel good and allows you to move through the practice with ease, then it is the perfect fit for you regardless of how it looks.

Perfect Summer Activities


Summer has been on for a while. That’s exactly why you might be running out of ideas of what to do by now. No worries. We’ve got you covered. And none of them is the really conventional kind. Get your cutest workout attire out, these cute capri leggings are my favorite,  slap a decent amount of suns cream on your skin. Don’t forget your face and ears. Pull on your running shoes and let’s go.


It might be hot out so you want to find things that you can either do inside, preferably in a chilled space, or in a park that offers lots of shade and a cool breeze. If you have a bench to yourself there are so many things you can do in terms of plank work, pushups, and jumps. Just get creative with it. You might have the luxury of living close by a mountainous region. Explore. The higher the altitude and the more vegetation offer cool hideouts for you to explore what nature has to offer. If you’re adventurous enough you can try biking trails. There are many bike trails prepared for those who seek adventure. Take advantage of them.

If you’re more into activities that are trending, try paddle boarding. It’s an excellent way to work your core and arms. And, while you’re by the water, you should also go for a swim. It’s a full body workout with no impact on your joints. Plus, your body moves in all directions. Enjoy the experience. And when we’re speaking of predictable activities, exploring new sites by bike is an excellent way to simultaneously get your workout for the day in. Or maybe you’re into yoga in a park. Why not? Take your mat there. Maybe you get a following or at least someone that can snap a photo for your Instagram page for you.

Speaking of best outdoor activities. I grew up with tennis. So, it often becomes a self-explanatory exercise. But, it really is a great way to work all of your body and improve coordination. While we’re speaking of the coordination, think of games you used to play as a kid. Jump rope, hopscotch … even running up and down the stairs. These are all activities that require your whole body and mind to be present. Well, sports in general do, but these are some of the simplest examples and you also see how we start learning coordination skills from a very early age.

And, if nothing good pops to mind, grab a yoga mat, dress in your chicest yoga pants, and a crop top and do a stretching routine. Opening up some space within you will make you feel especially refreshed. For times when you’re super lazy, you can always chill, read a book, and sit in a cross-legged position that stretches your muscles simultaneously. Mindfully repositioning yourself into a pose where your shoulders are back and chest forward sends the signal to your brain that you’re moving and adjusts the spine in a way that instantly makes you feel more confident.

Yoga for Divers

Diving is one of the most fun and intimidating practices that are gaining more popularity these days. Whether you are a newbie in this field or an experienced diver, it is unavoidable and unquestionable that fear still exists. Knowing that our anatomical system isn’t designed to survive underwater, and the thought of all of the deathly creatures that might be wandering around the diving spot, you will surely be swallowed by fear and doubts. However, overcoming these negative thoughts will be rewarded by the underwater world’s magnificent beauty once you conquer them.

Dive into Strength and Consciousness!
Yoga is well-known for its enormous benefits to the body and mind. The physical practice, combined with breathing exercises and meditation, will definitely promote better focus and awareness, a strong physique and a calm mind. All these aspects are very beneficial to divers whose awareness must be heightened all the time to ensure safety.

Breathing Exercises/Pranayama(s)

Breathing exercises are very effective ways to help divers achieve their maximum breathing capacity. When practicing pranayama(s), the slow and controlled breathing does not only relax the mind but also improves the lungs’ oxygen absorption and consumption.

Conscious Breathing. 

When diving deeper into the water, the pressure of the surroundings change. Air compression inside the body occurs and is decompressed as you approach back to the surface. This is where conscious breathing plays a vital role. If you hold breath as you reach the surface, air decompression inside the body can damage your sinuses, lungs and ears. Consciously breathing during dives means less air consumption, and less air consumption means deeper dives.

To practice breathing fully: Begin by sitting in a comfortable position while lengthening your spine. Close your eyes and inhale through the nose. Fill your lungs with air, then, your diaphragm. Exhale as you release the air in your lungs and notice how your chest deflates. Then, release the air in your diaphragm and notice how your belly sinks down. Keep a ratio of 3:3 for a full breath. This means taking 3 seconds to inhale and 3 seconds to release. Practice breathing fully as much as you desire.

Physical Practice/Asana(s)

Like other activities, diving is very physically demanding. This field requires that a person must be physically fit before getting into the waters. Yoga asana(s) or Yoga postures are very effective in increasing the body’s overall strength and well-being, making diving a lot less risky and creating a more fun experience without neglecting safety.

Heart Openers

Camel, Cobra and Sphinx Pose helps to stretch and counter the compression on your back due to the heavy 15-kilogram cylinder you carry around.

To do Sphinx Pose: Lie on your stomach and place your hands near your ribs. Slide back, allowing your forearms to rest on the ground. Remember to keep your spine long and keep your feet together.

Strong quads are a must. Whether it be walking to your boat in full gear or lifting yourself up back to the boat from a dive, strong quads and legs will help distribute the heavyweight throughout the lower extremities to avoid any back injury. Warrior I, Chair Pose and bridge variations will surely improve your quads’ overall strength.

To do Warrior I: Begin in a plank position. Inhale, then, bring your right foot between your hands and turn your left foot out on a 45-degree angle. Stabilize yourself by sending your hips forward, placing your weight on your right foot. Place your hands in prayer and inhale as you reach your arms up, palms pressing against each other. Stay in this pose for 3-5 breaths.


Being at the present moment is vital to both Yoga and scuba diving, to fully absorb the magnificent experience and be consciously elevated. The unification between you and the experience can be achieved through meditation. Heightened awareness, composure under pressure and appreciation of your existence and the wonders in front of you will surely elevate your soul’s emotions and perspectives. Disassociation to the world’s stress and chaos through yoga or diving is a very effective medium of self-realization.

Composure Under Pressure

When experiencing trouble while underwater, remaining calm will surely save you. Panicking will only cause more trouble, injuries, or worst, death. Being composed during these moments and knowing the procedure will keep you safe from any harm. Meditation cultivates calmness which will surely make your diving experience less scary and more fun!

Adding Yoga as a part of your routine is an effective way of boosting your overall health. Practicing Yoga also makes anything a lot less scary and more fun. If you feel any doubt or fear or want to increase your mind and body’s capabilities to improve your diving experience, hop onto the mat and let the transformation begin!

How Tight Hip Flexors Affect Your Backbend


It seems like backbends are one of those things in yoga that people either love or absolutely hate. They seem to be so much fun for people who have naturally bendy spines and are painful and stressful for people who really need to work on them. There are a few factors that contribute to how much “success” you find in your backbends. A lot of people focus solely on their back, but that is not where you should be feeling it if you are doing it in a healthy and sustainable way. In today’s article; we are going to chat about your hip flexors and the role they play in developing an aesthetically pleasing and luxurious backbend.

How to Backbend Safely

Before we get into how to deepen your backbend, it is important to point out a few health-related things. First off, not everyone has the skeletal structure to do dramatic backbends. For some people, it does not matter how much you stretch your stomach muscles, because you will just end up causing compression in your spine. Secondly, I already hinted on this, but be sure that your backbends are stretching your stomach, because that is the main area you should feel it. If you feel it in your back, you should stop. Thirdly, be cautious with your backbends, because an injured back can be very difficult and sometimes impossible to heal.


Tight Hip Flexors Versus Your Backbend

Although a backbend itself is involving the core only, a lot of yoga poses with backbends in them extend all the way through the front of your body. Think about upward facing dog, cobra, camel, and wheel pose; they all extend all the way through the front of your body. Your hip flexors obviously don’t apply to any bends that are solely concerning your back/stomach.

A lot of people forget about the connection between backbends and the entire front part of their body. Some of the yoga backbend poses extend to stretching the front of your foot. If you have tight hip flexors it will be extremely difficult for you to ever get into the more dramatic poses without injuring yourself and pulling yourself out of alignment to get in and out of the pose. Working out the tension in your hips will allow you to really sink even deeper into your backbends and press into your hips a little more. It means that you can get deeper into a backbend without having to put any extra stress on your back.

How to Loosen Tight Hip Flexors

Make sure you really focus on yoga poses concerning your hip flexors. Poses like warrior 1 and dragon pose are all amazing at targeting your hip flexors. Yoga is all about connecting with yourself and functioning as a single being. If you move through your practice with this in mind, it will become natural to want to stretch your hip flexors when performing a backbend. The body is a singular unit. Happy back bending!

My Spring New Moon Detox

It is said that the new moon, as well as the days leading up to the new moon (the waning moon) are the best times to detoxify the body because that is when your body has the highest capacity for ridding of toxins.

That being said, I decided I was going to do a light eating/detox on the coming new moon. My goals were to eat according to the yoga Sattvic diet, while eating less in general.

I marked the date on my calendar, which helped me mentally prepare. It is amazing how much your mental state effects whether you binge on food or not.

The new moon came. My boyfriend was off that day so we decided to do some morning Vinyasa Flow Yoga and Japa meditation (using mala beads). I realized that unless I was calm and centered (through meditation) I wouldn’t be able to maintain my will and sense of peace.

Morning Yoga Session

We set out our mats in our room, grabbed our meditation pillow, mala beads, yoga capris, and our new Tibetan Singing Bowl.

We started and ended the yoga/meditation session with three rings of the Tibetan Singing Bowl, Followed by an Om Chant, said out loud together. As I expected, we felt in the moment and much calmer than when we started.

We chose to do the Sun Salutation yoga sequence, breathing deep and using the Ujjayi breath. We chose a few standing yoga poses, twisting poses, and core focused poses and sequences, ending on the floor in a few stretching poses.

I felt good about treating my body to challenging poses and poses designed to detox such as the twisting poses.


I was on my own with the daily diet plan, because my boyfriend decided that he would “participate next time”…Which, funny enough, by the next day he told me “ya’ know I think I’m going to start eating healthier too”.

For breakfast, I had a Multigrain Blueberry Oatmeal from Trader Joes that I had stuffed away in my kitchen cupboard. I savored some Hot Coffee this time, but if I wanted to challenge my self next time I will probably opt for green tea or hot ginger lemon tea.

I made a point to eat slower and really notice all the qualities of my food. This was a very satisfying way to eat as I noticed certain grains I had literally never saw before, even though I have eaten this oatmeal many times.


I researched smoothie options on Jamba Juices website and figured we could have a smoothie date. The sun was out so we were able to drink our smoothies, get some sun, and spend quality time together. Springtime and smoothies are like a match made in heaven!

My Drink: Apples and Greens Smoothie


For dinner, I wanted to stick to the yoga food guidelines, so I made a small bowl of white basmati rice and some sautéed veggies. We had some curry powder so I threw that in there.

We loved the curry taste so much that we decide to make a curry dish next week! Curry can be great because it doesn’t have a lot of salt and it doesn’t contain garlic and onion, which are both ingredients that agitate your mind according to the yoga diet. I was vegetarian too, a plus for the environment, animals, and mental state!

We ate slowly and savored our meal. We drank mint tea after dinner and went to bed early; perfect new moon detox!

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