Yin Yoga Sequence – Low Back Relief!

It’s Monday … how about some yin?

I hope you are doing well today! I am coming out of a very busy work season and am grateful to be sharing with you all again today.

If you didn’t see on my Facebook page already, soon I will be launching some mini-workshops on the topic of teaching / practicing yin yoga. If you’d like to be added to my email list to be notified of these workshops, please click here! 

After many days and long hours at my desk – my low back is a total wreck! So, I wanted to share a new sequence with you today that can help provide relief for low back tension and pain. Energetically, this part of our body holds much of our frustration and anxiety. If you feel these things surfacing during the practice, focus on a deep flow of breath. Repeating mantra: inhale: “be” exhale “still” to come back to center.

Here’s a playlist for your practice!

Supported Bridge Pose (3 min) – Set yourself up on your back and slide the block under your sacrum in the lower spine. You can keep the knees bent or extend the legs straight. Allow your body to fully release into the support the block provides and enjoy this deep release for the lumbar vertebrae.

Butterfly (5 min) – Gently remove the block from the low back and return to the ground in a reclined position. Bend the knees and roll onto one side in a fetal position, feeling the effects of the supported pose your body was just in. Press your way up to seated and position yourself so your knees drop out and the feet come together. Support yourself with props as needed (ie. bolster in lap, blanket under hips, etc.) and begin to fold down. The upper back and neck can round if that is comfortable for you.

Caterpillar (3 min) – Slowly rise up from butterfly pose and begin to extend the legs straight in front of you. Invite movement and release into the legs and hips in whatever motion feels appropriate. When you feel settled, begin to fold yourself toward your extended legs, again using props where you feel they will benefit your pose for today.

Sphinx / Seal (5 min) – Rise out of your fold and give yourself a moment to rest with the head above the heart, then gently make your way to the belly. Prop yourself onto the forearms so the elbows are right beneath or just in front of the shoulders. Legs extend straight back behind you, glutes soft. Head can stay lifted or you can drop it to hang forward or rest it onto a block. Intensify this pose by adding a bolster under the forearms. In the last minute or two, if you’d like even more sensation, take the palms wide and press the elbows off of the floor for seal pose.

Half Frog (1 min) to Supine Twist (3 min) – Lower back down to the belly. Feel free to bend the knees and windshield wiper the feet side to side for a moment. Drop the legs down to the earth once more, cactus the elbows as you turn the gaze to the left, and gently slide the inner left leg up the side of the mat for half frog. Remain here for 6 deep and nourishing breaths (about one minute).

When ready, begin to extend the right arm forward and roll yourself onto the right side body, head resting on the arm. Gently open up into a supine twist eventually allowing the head to roll off the arm toward the space behind you. Breath deeply, but calmly into the rotation occurring naturally in the spine. Trust gravity and your breath to do all the work here.

*repeat half frog and supine twist on other side*

Banana (3 min each side) – From your twist on the second side, roll onto your back. Begin to stretch out long, taking the arms overhead and legs forward. Walk the feet over to the right, crossing the left ankle over the right if you’d like. Stay here, or begin to wiggle the upper body over toward the right side as well. Feel the left side body growing longer with each and every round of breath. After 3 minutes, move to the other side.

Pigeon / Swan Pose (5 min) – From your back, rock and roll gently up to a table top position. Slide the left knee toward the left wrist and walk the foot over toward the right side of the mat. Scoot the right leg back and utilize props wherever you feel wobbly here or need extra cushion. Take your time as you fold forward, eventually landing in a position where you can breathe and embrace the effects of the pose. After 5 minutes, complete this pose on the other side.

Hero / Saddle Pose (3 min) – From a table top position, uncurl the toes open your heels wider than your hips. Gently come back to a comfortable seat. Start by sitting higher on a prop and then lower down to the right amount of sensation for you slowly. You can stay upright or gently begin to recline toward the space behind you onto a prop or to the floor. If you feel a pinch in the low back, elevate your hips and scoot the cushion of your butt forward to lengthen the lumbar spine.

Legs up the Wall (8 min) / Savasana – Gently rise out of saddle and roll the hips to one side to extend the legs out in front of you. Shake and stretch them out to release the pose and then make your way to a wall for savasana. I like to keep my hips on the ground and close to the wall, but you can also elevate your hips to a bolster/blanket or take any comfortable resting position that works best for you.

namaste!

Be Still Tanks are BACK!

Be-Still.jpg

Good afternoon, yogis!

I hope your day is going well and that you are taking some yin-like moments for yourself. I’m getting geared up to lead my  workshop immersion on “Understanding + Teaching Yin Yoga” this weekend. It’s going to be fabulous!

If you’d like to host me at your local studio to lead this workshop, you can contact me directly for pricing and availability.

The more I teach yoga, the more I have realized that it is extremely important to be a well-rounded instructor in the practice of yoga. There’s so much of the practice that is focused on the yang side of things, especially with the increase in popularity of the pretzel-like “how’d you even do that?!” type of poses you see spread across the internet. And though I love vinyasa and the feeling of strength and complicated poses, my body and mind crave the balance and the simplicity that the yin practice offers. Yin has even infused itself into HOW I approach my flow practice and has allowed me insight on how to “Be Still” even when the practice is chaotic. It’s from my yin practice that has helped me tap into my ability to BE STILL with myself so that I can truly look inward and to BE STILL before God so that I can truly look upward.

I wanted to share with you that I designed this shirt as a way to raise scholarship money for students to be able to attend my workshop that are in a tough financial spot. If you’d like a tank/tee and to support a future attendee of Understanding + Teaching Yin Yoga, FILL OUT THIS FORM and I will send you an invoice. The tanks are both $25 plus shipping costs or free local pick-up.

Orders are due by Monday, May 21st!

Love you all!

Yin Yoga Video + Written Sequence for the Stomach Meridian

Hey yin friends!

I’m excited to let you know I am finally getting caught up on things and have uploaded a new  yin yoga class + guided meditation to my Youtube channel. The class works to stimulate the stomach meridian line. The stomach is connected our self-confidence and intuition so it’s important that we give it some attention! I finished this class and had me some lemon ginger tea since ginger is known to settle the stomach.

Anyway, enjoy the class. I wrote out the poses below so you have them in written form as well. If you are available May 19-20, my “Understanding + Teaching Yin Yoga” weekend immersion is coming up! Would be honored to have you at my studio for this special event. LEARN MORE!

Childs Pose (3 min)

Sphinx (3 min)

Half Frog (1 min each side)

Cat / Cow stretches (1 min)

Half Puppy / Melted Heart (2 min)

Threaded Needle (in childs) (1 min)

Stomach Revolving Twist (3 min)

*repeat half puppy through stomach revolving twist on other sides*

Wipers (1 min)

Butterfly (4 min)

Supported Bridge (2 min)

Reclined Hero / Saddle (3 min)

Savasana (5 min)

Feel free to pause the video if you want longer in each of these. There is a guided meditation at the end of the video. I will be leading a yin class and meditation tomorrow at 12pm central on my Twitch channel. Would love to have you join me! We can even talk yin happenings and questions if you’d like to chat.

Understanding + Teaching Yin Yoga

Hey yinsters!

If you haven’t already heard, I’m offering my “Understanding + Teaching Yin Yoga” workshop again this year MAY 19-20! This 2-day event is an  10-hour workshop that will delve into the history and purpose of yin yoga, how to practice yin, asanas of yin, sequencing techniques, and understanding the energy body in relation to the yin practice. It’s going to be a jam-packed weekend that will hopefully help you feel more equipped and mindful as you practice as well as teach yin yoga.

As I often mention in my posts, I am passionate about Yin Yoga because stillness is a desperate need in our world. Yin teaches our bodies and minds to observe what is before we react. It’s a wonderful gift.

YY Workshop PROMOS 2018-04

SIGN UP: https://goo.gl/ky2gT5

DATES: May 19-20 at Inspire Yoga: Highland Village,TX

Yoga instructors and yin yoga practitioners are welcome to attend.

DAY 1 – MAY 19 – 12:30-5:30pm
– History of yin
– Purpose of yin
– How to practice yin yoga
– Energy Body
– FULL BODY Yin Yoga Practice

DAY 2 – MAY 20 – 12:30-5:30pm
– Overview of postures
– Class Structure & Sequencing
– Breathing techniques
– HEART OPENING Yin Yoga Practice

Tuition
Full Training | $235 / $240*
*Yoga Alliance certificate available upon request at checkout (choose the option that includes a certificate)

One Day only | $125
(Day one is recommended for practitioners looking to learn more about the practice and purpose of yin yoga)


Instructor Nancy Nelson is a Yoga Alliance registered Continuing Education Provider (YACEP) certified at the E200/500 hour level. Yoga Teachers may qualify for up to 10 hours of Yoga Alliance continuing education credits with successful completion of this course.

Thrive Program | Now Available ONLINE!

Hey friends!

I’m really excited to announce that I now have my Thrive Program available in an ONLINE format! This has been a dream of mine for those of you who can’t participate locally. Now you can still enjoy the goodness of this 4-week body, mind and spirit RESET! This program has brought about so much change and restoration for me personally as well as here in my local community and I’m excited to see it spread its wings! Here’s what you can expect from the online Thrive Program…

  • DATES: You’ll participate alongside the group that I’m leading in-person April 6th – May 5th
  • VIDEOS: Access to 4 recorded yin yoga practices, 2 flow practices and 4 weekly meetings with yours truly. I will send these to you each week so you can get everything you need to know for the week’s theme and get to practice yoga with that theme.
  • FOOD: Reset your diet and your life with the CLEAN Program. I have done this clean eating program every year since 2011 and it’s a wonderful reset for the body as well as the mind. Let’s restore our happy relationship with food and Self! You will notice they have kits on their website for purchase. While you are welcome to order those if you’d like, I usually buy my supplements and protein powder locally. I will be happy to include a meal plan if you’d like more guidance on what to eat.
  • COMMUNITY: If you desire, you’ll be linked with an accountability partner to connect with throughout the program
  • GUIDANCE: Throughout the program, I will be available for any questions, comments or concerns that you might have in real-time. I will likely create a facebook group for those of you participating from afar to connect with each other.
  • GOODIES: Once you register, you’ll be mailed a welcome kit that will include… The CLEAN book, a Thrive Program journal (most of your introspective work will be derived from this), and some other fun surprises!

The purpose of this workshop is to provide you with a loving community of like-minded individuals as you begin to “cleanse” your body, mind and spirit in hopes of stepping into a new season of refreshment in your life. If you have any questions, please contact me today.

Nancy Nelson is a Yoga Alliance registered Continuing Education Provider (YACEP) certified at the E200/500 hour level. Yoga Teachers may qualify for up to 10 hours of Yoga Alliance continuing education credits with successful completion of this course.


SIGN UP!

{registration for spring 2018 session is now closed}

LIVE Today at 4pm CST! FREE Workshop!

Hey friends!

Happy Friday to each of you. I hope your week is coming to a nice close so we can get this weekend started. I wanted to extend an invitation to you to join me for my FREE WORKSHOP TODAY ON TWITCH at 4pm CST! We will be breaking down Ujjayi “yoga breath” and Sun Salutation A in detail. Sunday afternoon at 1pm CST I will lead a yang/yin fusion class and it’s going to be a full-body stretch/strengthener. Be sure to follow my page if you want to be notified each time I go live! Would love to connect with you all in a more “personal” way 🙂

Here’s a yin sequence and meditation that I led on Wednesday during my mid-week meditation. It was great having those of you that made it tune in for that!

Here’s the breakdown of the sequence…

Childs Pose (2-3 min)

Table top movements. Anything that feels organic. (1 min)

Puppy/Melted Heart Pose (2 min)

Counter: Angry Cat pose (3 breaths)

Wide Legged Dragon (2 min)

Pigeon/Swan Pose (2 min)

Counter: Seated Twist (1 min)

*repeat dragon – twist on the other side*

Supported Bridge (2-3 min)

 

Meditation Mantra

“I am here. I am alive. I am present. I am very truly blessed.”