Tag: blissology

Join the EcoKarma Challenges!

Let’s keep plastic out of the ocean.

Challenge #1: Stop Sucking!

Our EcoKarma Challenge number 1 of 4 is to stop sucking.

Literally, every day there are 500 millions straws used per day in the USA alone. How can we reduce that number?  It’s easy—I carry a glass straw in my backpack.

Let’s commit to stop sucking this month!

Challenge #2: Go Topless!

Please share with eco-minded yogis you know and check out our EcoKarma Challenge to see how you can participate, make a change and even win some swag!

What does Core Stability really mean?

Whether you are preparing to hit the ski hills this season, play golf next season, perform fall yard work, or simply are wanting to continue to walk and perform all your household chores with ease and efficiency, it might be helpful to be knowledgeable about the term ‘core’ and how timing of our core contributes to quality of movement whether we are participating in sports or activities of daily living.

The ‘core’ can be interpreted in many ways, depending on who is explaining it. Some leading spine researchers debate that a true ‘core’ even exists (O’Sullivan 2012 interview here). Scientific reviews of high level (level 1) evidence conclude that there is not any one superior exercise for chronic low back pain. The popular belief that core stability exercises are essential to prevent and address back pain is not supported by research (don’t shoot the messenger) (Smith et al 2014). Sure, these exercises may help some people; but not for the reasons we may think. This debate is for another post. That said, we all likely have heard of the ‘inner core’ described as a group of muscles surrounding the trunk and described as a cylinder. The main function of these muscles is said to create spinal stability and control the intra-abdominal pressure (IAP) when the rest of the body is in motion. There are 4 main muscle groups that make up the inner core: Transversus Abdominus (TA), Multifidus (MF), Pelvic Floor muscles (PFM), and the respiratory diaphragm. TA is the deepest abdominal muscle that wraps around your abdomen like a corset, and is connected to tissue surrounding the spine. When TA engages, it assists in increasing the pressure inside the abdomen, which
can be one of many factors that contribute to trunk stability. MF is a deep spinal muscle which makes up the back part of the core. It is a postural muscle that helps keep the spine erect. The PFM’s are the bottom part of the ‘cylinder’ or core. More information about the role of the pelvic floor and the factors that influence its function is here.

The respiratory diaphragm makes up the top part of the cylinder. When all of these muscles engage in a coordinated manner, they help to maintain the pressure in the abdomen which then provides the stability to the spine and pelvis. It is important to note that the timing of these muscle engagements is needed for efficiency of movement and function, which is why I often like to refer to this phenomenon as “core timing” instead of “core stability.” For optimal core function, these muscles will activate in a sophisticated and coordinated during movement and are ideally engaging at a variety of intensities, automatically, throughout all movement, all day! Julie Wiebe, PT, describes the core strategy system as ‘piston science.’ Antony Lo, PT, discusses the refined recruitment that continually changes in response to each task as “tension to task.”

A common misconception is that “strong abdominals protect the spine”. In fact, as described above, the abdominal muscles make up only one part of the core. Furthermore, coordinated ‘timing’ of the engagement of the TA is important and not just the mere ‘strength’. The famous “6-pack” or Rectus Abdominus muscle that many fitness fanatics train is not the muscle we are trying to target here. Instead of engaging TA adequately, you may be using or over-recruiting the Rectus Abdominus (as evident by the abdominals popping out and up) to compensate for the TA that may not be recruiting appropriately.

Core timing or core training can play an important role in any rehabilitation program.  A healthy core means a healthy foundation from which our limbs can move with more power and efficiency. However, can we actually volitionally ‘train’ each muscle to engage in a perfectly timed and refined way? It’s quite a sophisticated and automated system: there is debate on whether or not we can actually cue the timing of the core adequately.  That is also for another post!

For now, I will say that in my clinical experience, cueing breath and ease of movement seems to improve core timing (therefore movement efficiency and performance) more than actually cueing TA, PFM’s or MF to voluntarily ‘engage.’

Brent Anderson, PT, PhD, explains a similar approach, and uses two real-time ultrasounds to illustrate this concept here.

Core timing can be an essential part of any regular workout routine. Whether you enjoy recreational sports, competitive sports, pilates, yoga, or enjoy working out at the gym, addressing your core (through breath) can improve your abilities and enhance your overall performance.

If you experience low back pain, then a visit to your physiotherapist or other trained health care professional would be a good idea. See “Truth About Back Pain” for more info on myths vs truths about back pain and the myth of core stability here.

**This article is not intended to act as medical advice, nor to diagnose or replace your current treatment. Please seek clearance and guidance from your licensed healthcare professional prior to participating in any of the tips, advice, practices or movements mentioned in this article.

By Shelly Prosko, PT, PYT, CPI, Blissology 200-hr YTT graduate
Check out Shelly’s teacher profile to learn more.  

Luke Graeber

Fire only burns as bright as there are flames to continue keeping it alive. Our Blissology Yoga Teacher’s Collective is burning bright and we are so excited to share the first of our Bliss Blogs on some of the amazing spirits and shining lights who are continuing to speak, connect and inspire their Bliss.

 

Name:
Luke Graeber

Where in the world you can find me:
Shanghai, China at Pure Yoga.

What originally drew me to yoga:
I worked as an accountant at that time and Yoga was a way for me to get out of my head and more into my heart. I was instantly drawn to the physical practice and it is what I use still today to keep my body, mind are heart feeling alive.

Blissology to me is…
a supportive community of people that not only share the benefits of Yoga with the world but protect the world they live in.

My life mission is…
to inspire with my practice and empower with my teaching.

The most important thing yoga has taught me is…
the only person that can transform you, is yourself.

When I’m not on the yoga mat, I’m…
taking photos, drinking coffee, reading Iyengar books or playing Acro Yoga.

The cause/project I am most passionate about is…
spreading the benefits of Yoga that has been passed to me through my teachers.

I am learning to…
take Yoga photos. I love capturing people in their full state of awareness.

What I want to teach others (through yoga) is to…
live more in alignment with our true self. Many distractions pull us away from living from this place; Yoga is a way to not only fully understand our true self but to reconnect with our true self through practice.

Most inspiring yoga related experience:
2015 Vancouver Blissology Teacher Training, at that time I just left the corporate world and was looking for my calling. The training was inspiring on many levels but the most inspiring part for me was seeing how Eoin created an environment where people felt safe to deal with any issues they had.

Favorite yoga pose:
Scorpion, I love inverted backbends because they show balance in a practice. The combination of strength, flexibility and balance.

Best way to fuel up after yoga:
Meditate.

Yoga and music are…
a way to realise our true self and also a way to express our true self.

I create community with Blissology by…
creating a connection between people. Each class I do partner work to create this connection. Also share a little bit of my Blissology experience before I teach each class.

I am most grateful for…
the chance to share the benefits that I have received through Yoga with others.

My advice for aspiring yoga teachers:
Don’t wait, when you finish your training teach straight away.

You will feel you will not be ready but that feeling gets stronger the longer you wait, go and share the love!!!

~

Connect with Luke:
Instagram: @lukegraeber
Facebook: Luke Graeber

Linda Cruse

Fire only burns as bright as there are flames to continue keeping it alive. Our Blissology Yoga Teacher’s Collective is burning bright and we are so excited to share the first of our Bliss Blogs on some of the amazing spirits and shining lights who are continuing to speak, connect and inspire their Bliss.

 

Name:
Linda Cruse

Where in the world can we find you? 
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia with a boot full of yoga mats I have been heading out to teach at community halls since my YTT in 2014, it has been a great way to grow as a teacher.  This Spring I will be starting practices at Fit Hot Yoga and Yoga North Hobart to join a collaboration of teachers for different backgrounds, with different styles. I feel very passionate about sharing the Blissology philosophy, what I have learnt from Eoin and my journey, in a space where I have the freedom to share in my own way.

What originally drew me to yoga?
This Canadian guy….and Power Yoga for Happiness

Blissology to me is…
Everything that keeps my energy centres balanced… Love, Yoga, Meditation, Nature, High Prana foods and my Blissology family

My life mission is…
To share the gift of yoga

The most important thing yoga has taught me is…
Yoga has taught me many things… the most important thing is love, being open to give, receive and the freedom to be 100% Linda without fear of judgement.

When I’m not on the yoga mat, I’m…
In the water or my garden and thinking about where my practice will take me next, physically and spiritually

The cause/project I am most passionate about is…
Changing someone’s life through yoga.  The transformation it brings has a ripple effect that I believe is changing the world.

I am learning to…
Accept, forgive, love and live in the present moment.

What I want to teach others (through yoga) is to…
Be patient, accept who you are, your limitations, honor the feedback you receive from your body and love yourself, the rest will come.

Most inspiring yoga related experience?
A student in my practice sharing that yoga has changed her life…

Favorite yoga pose?
At the moment Upha Vishta Konasana. Because it has been one of my best teachers, there have been times when I pushed to find the pose and I hurt myself. There is no rush, we should slow down and listen to our bodies when moving into a pose and be patient, everything comes in time.  When you let go of the fight and be in the pose regardless of the depth, it brings freedom and the acceptance that this is me and that’s ok.

Best way to fuel up after yoga?
Can I say beer?? But seriously, just water and uncomplicated food, anything green.

Yoga and music are…
An opportunity to let go, find freedom and yourself…

I create community with Blissology by…
Sharing a practice that opens the door to yoga on and off your mat, encouraging a connection with nature, kindness to yourself and others and keeping things simple.

I am most grateful for…
Every single breath and recognising how important it is to stay open to love and spiritual growth.

What advice do you have for aspiring yoga teachers?
Be you! Lighten up and have fun…Get out of your head, come into your heart and it’s always ok to fart

~

You can contact Linda at:
veayoga@gmail.com
facebook.com/lindacruse
facebook.com/veayoga