Sunday, February 24, 2013

Yoga and Skiing

Today I went skiing for the first time. Yay!!!! This made me wonder if yoga can help you ski better. The article I read about skiing and yoga explains that yoga can help by helping with injury prevention. The article explains that skiing can be very hard on your knees. This is because your knees absorb most of the impact from terrain on downhills runs. The knees take even more of the force if your gluteus, quadriceps, and back muscles are weak because these are the muscles that provide the power for skiing. In order to reduce the stress to knees, you can do poses that lengthen and strengthen the four sides of your upper leg. The article also explains that skiers need to have an awareness of their core and center, like in yoga. This allows a skier to turn efficiently and have quick reactions to unexpected situations.
Certain yoga poses can also help with proper ski form. For example, when skiing, your feet should be shoulder-width apart like in Mountain Pose, your knees should be in line with your toes like in Chair Pose, and your shoulders should be dropped/relaxed like Tadasana.
This article has been very helpful and I am going to try these tips for injury prevention and ski form next time I go skiing!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Yoga and Strength Training

For my blog this week, I read an article explaining the debate between practicing yoga and strength training. The article explains that when you want to build muscle strength and mass, strength training is better. This is because when you practice yoga, you are limited to your own body weight. When you practice strength training, you can increase the amount of weight you use. Strength training is also better for preventing bone loss by practicing resistance training that helps bones become stronger by causing the muscles and tenons to pull on the bones. This stimulates the bone cells to produce more bone. Overall, the article explains that neither practice is better for overall fitness. The best thing to do is combine the practices. Strength training will strengthen the body and boost your metabolism while yoga will keep your body flexible and keep your mind calm.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Yin Yoga

Last week in class we did yin yoga. It was a very interesting experience. I felt as if it was a mix between meditation and holding yoga poses. I really like the experience and now want to learn more about yin yoga, so more my blog this week I read an article explaining the basic concepts of this practice.
Yin Yoga is a meditative approach to yoga that focuses on accessing deeper tissues, like the connective tissues and fascia. It also focuses on areas in the body where there are joints, like the hips and spine. When we did yin yoga in class the other day, we focused on stretching out the hips. I had not realized how tight my hips were until we held these positions. I have been doing a couple of the positions we did in class at home this past week in order to become more flexible in my hips.
The article explains how this practice allows you to become more intimate with your emotions and sensations. This practice also helps you learn to accept what is happening in life because it makes you sit still in uncomfortable positions for long periods of times. Doing this asks you to learn to accept what is in that given moment.
After learning more about Yin Yoga, I am even more interested in it and plan to practice it more outside of class.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Yoga for Your Feet

Throughout my life if have suffered from foot problem that ranged from plantar fasciitis to tendinitis. For my blog this week, I have found an article explaining how yoga can help with these types of foot pain. The article explains that yoga can help strengthen the muscles in your feet and help heal  inflammation.
The article also explains some techniques to use when your are doing yoga in order to decrease foot pain. These include, working the toes, making sure to be square and to distribute your weight across your feet, and make sure to do poses that stretch and strengthen your feet. Theses poses include downward-facing dog and hero pose with the toes tucked under.
Overall this was a very interesting article. I am looking forward to trying some of these techniques to see if they help with my foot pain.