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Who Am I To Question Jois…?

I know I will be burned at the stake for saying this, but I find the classic Ashtanga Primary Series video led by Sri Pattabhi Jois to some of his most prominent students……well…….sort of cringy. From the tense-shouldered Urdhva Mukha Svanasana to the Chaturanga Dandasanas that are an inch off the floor, from the splayed…

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Ah! The Naïveté of Youth!

When I was but a wee lass in my pre-yoga 20s, I used to wake up at 4am every day to go to the gym before work. Every day, it was the same group of worker-outers. Always the usual suspects. Among us was a man in his early 90s, who not only did an hour…

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You’re Getting Sleepy…Sleeeeeepy….

One thing (if I can possibly name one thing) that everyone is talking about these days is how hard is has been to get a good night’s sleep during the pandemic. A year-and-a-half into all this craziness, that’s a long time to go sleep deprived. Sleep is such an incredibly important part of not just…

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a matter of life or death!

By Shana | January 31, 2016

this is the pose. warrior two. one day–maybe five years ago–we were all in this pose. and something inside of me starting laughing. at myself. at the teacher. and at everyone around me. here we were, a bunch of fully grown adults standing still like statues in some sort of superhero museum, taking it as…

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yoga for butterflies

By Shana | January 6, 2016

it must be pretty comfortable to be a caterpillar. you get to wrap yourself up in a warm, soft cocoon and sleep for ages. pretty much my world’s greatest fantasy. but then…there’s a choice. you can stay cuddled in your comfy cocoon for the rest of your life until you die, or you can wake…

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oh! my!! god!!!

By Shana | November 12, 2015

we’ve all been there. something terrible–or seemingly terrible–happens and we suddenly become very religious. we pray and pray to a god we only really talk to when something terrible (or seemingly terrible) happens. we promise him we will never sin again if he just fixes this one problem. we’ll give 100% of our income to…

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there are no bad decisions…

By Shana | August 22, 2015

when you look back upon your life, there’s a good chance that you can pick out the good decisions from the bad. breaking up with your abusive boyfriend, good. breaking up with the love of your life, bad. leaving a dead-end job, good. leaving a fabulous job for hopes of better, bad. jumping into your…

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because, cecil the lion.

By Shana | July 31, 2015

warning. you may be personally offended by this blog post. sorry. it’s actually time to get off your high lion, step back and truly examine the concept of ahimsa. i have to admit, i have not seen the viral video of a dentist killing cecil the lion. because i’m already a vegan, i feel like…

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i do believe in spooks. i do. i do believe in spooks.

By Shana | May 27, 2015

go ahead and laugh. i cried myself to sleep on saturday night. yeah…that’s not the funny part. i cried myself to sleep because i was afraid of a ghost. see, i was staying at the notoriously haunted fort garry hotel in winnipeg and they put me in the room directly adjacent to the room directly…

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someone call guinness!!!

By Shana | April 29, 2015

well, i did it. i just finished teaching the world’s smallest yoga teacher training in history. three students (and me) in my little home yoga studio. and. it. ROCKED! while other trainings have 20, 30, 50…or more students, i had just three. and everyone kept asking me how it was financially worthwhile…and why didn’t i…

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the urban yoga soundtrack

By Shana | April 20, 2015

home practice. what could be more ideal? nothing but you and the silence of your surroundings. no being subjected to the endless chatter of some talky teacher. no being distracted by the sweaty, smelly masses around you. just you, your mat, and your practice. or, if you’re me…jackhammers. just me, my mat, my practice and…

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how losing control brings control

By Shana | March 8, 2015

i have this one student who gives me what she calls “bonus animal noises” when she feels like she is losing control of a pose. as in, she thinks she’s about to fall out of a handstand and then monkey-like sounds emit from her mouth. that’s the first sign of impending doom. then there is…

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the greedy giver

By Shana | February 16, 2015

aparigraha. non-greed. one of the basic precepts (yamas) of yoga. part of the moral code for living. on the surface, this is an easy one. don’t take what you don’t need, and give what you can. right? well, right-ish. nothing in yoga (or life) is quite that simple. any basically good human being knows that…

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you don’t need a yin practice.

By Shana | January 23, 2015

so, i was working with a student–coincidentally named yin–and she was pontificating the value of a yin practice. her exact words (to the best of my recollection): “i really should start a yin practice, huh?” honestly, my response: no. let me preface this by saying these are my thoughts while i am still (relatively) young…

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you don't need a yin practice.

By Shana | January 23, 2015

so, i was working with a student–coincidentally named yin–and she was pontificating the value of a yin practice. her exact words (to the best of my recollection): “i really should start a yin practice, huh?” honestly, my response: no. let me preface this by saying these are my thoughts while i am still (relatively) young…

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get smart

By Shana | December 25, 2014

’tis the season. christmas. the time of year where i have to explain over and over again why i–a jew–do not celebrate christmas. the conversation usually goes something like this: them: merry christmas. me: thanks, but i’m jewish. i don’t celebrate christmas. 🙂 them: really? why not? me: because i’m jewish. them: but why don’t…

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om sweet om

By Shana | October 29, 2014

so it took me a little while to foster a consistent home practice. a few years really…well, let’s be honest, a decade… for the first few years, i would hunker down for a home practice, do a few sun salutations, a couple of poses, and ten minutes later, i was done. that was the end…

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a simple test to find out if you are ready for level 2/3 yoga classes…

By Shana | October 21, 2014

So, some people think they are ready for a 2/3 yoga class…until they actually take one and the truth becomes readily apparent. Here’s an easy test to determine whether you are 2/3 caliber: Go to a Level 2/3 yoga class. If you can’t wait for the next one, you’re ready. If you can’t bear the…

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how to go to an awesome yoga workshop and get absolutely nothing out of it

By Shana | October 10, 2014

one lovely day many years ago, i was lucky enough to attend an amazing, exclusive, private workshop with a world famous yogi who offered to teach a handful of people how to press into handstand. for a few hours, the group of us pushed and pressed our way through the material. everyone in the room…

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because i said you can…that’s why….

By Shana | August 14, 2014

it’s funny. i mean not ha-ha funny, but funny nonetheless. i work with a lot of special needs yoga students (that’s not the funny part), of every age and every challenge, be it mental, physical, or emotional. most of the time, i make tremendous strides. i’ve had a student come to me in a wheelchair…

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about last night…

By Shana | July 12, 2014

so…about last night. it wasn’t a great night. as some of you know, i am pretty active in pro-israel politics (“pretty active” as in: it’s the single most important thing in my life) and the recent events in israel have been quite unsettling, to say the least. it’s been a few days of conference call…

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the spiritual handstand

By Shana | July 3, 2014

So, here I am minding my own business, taking advantage of the awesome summer sun, practicing on the cliffs in Santa Monica. Runners run by, bikers bike, strollers stroll…and then there’s this one random guy who feels it is very important to take it upon himself, come over to me, yell that “That’s not yoga,…

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my million dollar baby moment

By Shana | June 12, 2014

okay…i’ll admit it’s not the easiest transition in yoga, but honestly, it’s not the hardest one either. in fact, it’s pretty manageable…albeit perhaps a tad bit scary. i’m talking about vrschikasana in adho mukha vrksasana to gandha behrundasana, silly! but of course! oh…sound like sanskrit to you? basically, it’s going from scorpion in a handstand…

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there’s no business like yoga business…and i mean that literally…

By Shana | March 14, 2014

i’ll admit, i’ve been called a lot of things in my day–mostly behind my back–but the one thing that kills me every time is when people (let’s call them yoga instructors) accuse me of being (brace yourself) a businesswoman. usually in the form of “you think this is a business! it’s not! it’s yoga!” oh,…

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