Yoga

YYoga’s New Site For Your Mobile Device

I love my iPhone…like REALLY love it! Don’t know what I’d do without it. A lot of my friends show similar adoration towards their Blackberry smartphones and Android devices.

One of Vancouver Yoga Review’s favorite group of yoga studios around the lower mainland, YYoga, has just released their own mobile site.

Here’s the info from their site:

Visit www.m.yyoga.ca or go to www.yyoga.ca on your mobile and you will be re-directed to the new YYoga mobile site.

Even better, if you’re an iPhone user, here’s how you can add a YYoga icon to your homescreen. Viewing schedules is now easier and faster than ever on your cell phone!

Step 1: Visit the mobile site.

Step 2: Click the plus symbol on your iPhone (+)

Step 3: Select the option ‘Add to Home Screen’

Step 4: You will be prompted to enter a name for your new icon, call it whatever you want, whatever motivates you!

Step 5: Click add.

That’s it!

Blackberry users can ‘bookmark’ the mobile site by visiting the mobile site, clicking the blackberry options icon (the dots) and selecting “Add Bookmark”.

Don’t forget to also add YYoga to your facebook and twitter so you can follow our updates on your phone.

I just added YYoga Mobile to my iPhone, now you can too!

YYoga Mobile

This new site will make it easier to view the YYoga page on your mobile device so you can stay up to date with their latest news and class schedules.

What’s your favorite mobile device?

Heat it Up!

As an opportunity arose to teach in a Hot Yoga Studio, not Bikram’s; I’m told there is a difference, I decided it was time to try out “hot yoga.” I have to admit, if there wasn’t an opportunity to teach I probably would have continued to actively procrastinate on trying out this style of yoga, for many reasons.

1) I’m not a heat person, don’t like it, it doesn’t like me and chooses to tell me this immediately, so I therefore avoid it as best as I can. Needless to say, summer is not my favourite season!

2) Everything I have heard about Hot Yoga from sweaty people rolling around in their own sweat, to the smells of the floor & the studio itself. I personally think the “smell” of the floor is important, since you get your nose right down there!

North Shore Elements YYoga Infrared Sauna

3) Injuries, having been teaching for awhile now I’ve had lots of students tell me that they injured themselves doing hot yoga, for various reasons of course, but the possibility of getting hurt doing one of the things I love is enough to make me steer clear.

And then, things happen, thoughts change & you go out on a limb & try something you thought you never would. Mind you, I also have the people who have told me all of the opposite points as well, that they LOVE hot yoga & gives them everything & so much more! Just like any yoga practice or anything in life, you have to see for yourself, so off I went.

[Image Source:North Shore Elements YYoga]

The first class was a Saturday morning, as soon as I walked in it was stuffy, another thing I hate is breathing warm air, instantly I had to turn my head around & say give it a shot, maybe you’ll get used to it. The class was fantastic, the heat didn’t like me so much, I spent the next day and a half in bed with a killer migraine, perhaps I didn’t drink enough water before, during or after or perhaps, I was right, my redheaded self doesn’t like the heat. Nevertheless, with believing in giving everything a second chance, I made my way back. The second time with two bottles of water in tow, and an optimistic attitude, with the sweat dripping & the feeling that you are working, I survived through a second class unscathed, no migraine to be seen of woohoo!

However, I haven’t been back since, decided that maybe teaching this “hot yoga” is not the thing for me, with the unknowing if the migraine was a coincidence or the not having one was the coincidence, so at this point I’m completely undecided. But with my Passport to Prana in hand & lots of choices of Hot Yoga and Bikrams to try out, perhaps this is my year to finally decide if I am ready to “Heat it Up!”

How do you feel about Hot Yoga, fan or not?

A Sacred Space

“Sacred: Highly Valued & Important”

I recently visited A Sacred Space on 4th Avenue in Kitsilano, and all I can say is it most certainly lives up to its name. The space is beautiful, absolutely beautiful! You enter through a glorious old antique door, with store front windows that let in a lot of natural light and enhance the beauty of this small studio.

I love small studios, the energy & the atmosphere, especially at Sacred Space, is warm & inviting from the moment you walk in, it feels as if you have been practicing yoga there for years. With hardwood floors and an old radiator in the corner, the space contains so much of its own natural energy. From years & years of people walking along those floorboards, walking past those walls, you can feel the history & the stories of the space as you sit and prepare yourself for class. During the day the windows are covered with thin blinds that still let in a lot of natural light but keep the lookie-loo’s at bay, and in the evening, beautiful, lustourous curtains that don’t let any of that comfort escape from the windows and make it a cozy environment to practice in.

My first class was a Vinyasa Flow on Saturday morning, with Renee, it was a great powerful flow and a wonderful way to start the weekend. I was excited to return Sunday night for the Restorative class with Lindsay, which was the perfect way to end the weekend & prepare yourself for the long week ahead. With the big curtains pulled, the candles lit and the ambiance that the space creates just all on its own, the class was perfect. I left completely and utterly relaxed and it sealed in the notion in my mind that A Sacred Space really is Sacred.

The studio having only been open for the last couple of weeks, lets you take a different look at your practice, no mass amounts of people to distract you but a small contained space where the energy radiates into you. The space has been there for years and has been previously rented out for other activities, Mysore etc, throughout the years but Cindy Shaw’s plan to open it into a yoga studio permanently was the best decision ever.

I cannot wait to return to the wonderful people and this breathtaking space and more fabulous classes that leave you wanting more. There are some great membership deals on, including your first class for only $9.00! Make sure you check it out & let me know what you think!

You make a living by what you get. You make a life by what you give.- Winston Churchill

4-Minute Yoga At Your Desk

If your job requires you to work at a desk for long periods of time, then you might find your back getting stiff throughout the day.

Here is an excellent video by world-renowned yoga instructor, and Gaiam Yoga Club developer, Rodney Yee.

(We were fortunate to take a class from Rodney and his wife, Colleen Saidman, at last year’s Yoga Conference in Vancouver.)

Try the following routine for some instant upper and lower back loosening.

What tips do you have for keeping your body moving at your desk-job?

Treloar Yoga Studio Review

The Studio at Treloar is centrally located on the corner Broadway and Heather, in Vancouver. You can access the studio either via Heather Street or West Broadway. Do sign in at their Physio office located on the 5th floor before you attend your very first class.  A great perk for new guests: you are only charged $5 for your first class at The Studio at Treloar!

After I checked in with reception, I headed downstairs to the Yoga studio and was greeted and graciously welcomed by their Studio Director, Erin Treloar. Erin gave me a bit of background on the Treloar company and I learned that Treloar Physio has been around for and impressive 27 years! Their Yoga Studio is Vancouver’s first physio-based studio offering a variety of Yoga, Pilates and specialized classes.

Their studio is a large, open space that feels expansive, yet intimate at the same time. Lights were dim and candles were lit to create peaceful, calming surroundings. It’s definitely a bonus for physio recipients to be able to come downstairs, after they receive treatment, and participate in specialized yoga classes that accommodate for injuries.

I attended Kat Sovio’s Hatha class on a Tuesday evening. Kat’s not only a Yoga teacher, but she’s also a certified physiotherapist.  Kat‘s class was lovely –  I enjoyed her spoken interludes, especially when she discussed the importance of remaining centered. Be at the center of a ‘spinning wheel’ while all the ‘craziness goes on around you in the universe’. She also referenced Eckhart Tolle, a favorite of mine, and a Vancouver resident! The class began in standing meditation, a nice change from the usual seated cross-legged position, Sukhasana. Each pose flowed nicely together and I left Kat’s class feeling invigorated and limber.

I will mention that the receptionist I dealt with was less than courteous – quite unexpected for a yoga studio. I will give her the benefit-of-the-doubt and assume, based on her attitude and misinformation she provided, that she is new to the business and hasn’t yet had training in proper customer service.

Nevertheless, my overall experience at The Studio at Treloar (thanks to Kat and Erin) was wonderful and I would recommend it to anyone looking for specialized classes and physio-based yoga.

For more information, visit their website: http://www.treloarphysio.com/studio/

Connect with Treloar Studio on Twitter and Facebook!

Yogacara Studio Review

Yogācāra is an intimate studio conveniently located in Kitsilano – on Traflagar & Broadway. I was lucky enough to try out a Hatha class by Christine on Monday of last week. Upon my arrival, I was warmly greeted by Studio Director Helene, who kindly gave me a tour of her lovely studio.

Yogācāra is translated from Sanskrit as “one whose practice is Yoga.” One of their mantras is “Yoga…not about being trendy…just about being!” I feel they have achieved a warm, inviting and authentic space that really is about ‘being’.

Complimentary tea, water and cookies!

They have a 13 mat limit, creating a perfect atmosphere for individualized attention from the yoga teacher. Also, they have a raised platform in which the teacher conducts her class from – great for beginners to see how to properly attempt each pose.

Yogācāra offers delicious teas, snacks and water for guests to partake in, in their front waiting area. This room is also a lovely area to meet and chat with fellow yogis before or after each class.

Choosing to affix large Buddhas on the wall (instead of large mirrors) adds to the peaceful atmosphere of their studio. The studio was also exceptionally clean and tidy, which enhanced the zen ambiance.

Mats are provided, as well as all yoga props – all extremely clean as well (cleaner than any other yoga studio I’ve been to in Vancouver). Even if I’m attending a studio that usually provides mats, I will always bring my own. When I return to Yogācāra, I don’t feel the need to bring my own yoga mat.

Zen Buddha Wall

Zen Buddha Wall

Christine provided an excellent Hatha class. Rain pattered gently on the window, calming music played quietly in the background, and candles flickered softly during the rejuvenating class.  I felt like all my major muscles were properly stretched and left class with such a buzz (calm, yet energized all at the same time) that I would have sworn it was a bright, sun-shiny day outside and not a dull, dreary, rainy one!

Yogācāra just might be my new favorite studio – check them out today http://yogacara.ca/

Private, individual Far Infrared Sauna sessions are offered. Your first session is $15.00. Teaching training is also offered by the studio, click here.

Connect with Yogācāra on Twitter and Facebook.

Yoga, Yoga, Yoga Everywhere!

Like most Yogi’s in Vancouver, I spent the weekend at the Vancouver Yoga Conference. While I only took two classes, the options seemed to be endless, below is some of my thoughts about what the Vancouver Yoga Conference had to offer & what could be improved next year;

  • Friday the Garden classes didn’t start all afternoon & when they did were not per the times scheduled on the listing.
  • Heard from many friends who were taking sessions that sessions were starting or ending late, while not overly surprising for the first day, it is one thing that makes me crazy is when people forget how valuable everybody else’s time is as well.
  • The Trance Dance, having never experienced anything like it before was interesting to say the least, the room was HOT, and I mean HOT, no air conditioning seemed to be on & people stood in the hallway to get a breath of fresh air, stay out there too long there was no hope of getting back into that room, therefore I didn’t make it to the end.
  • Worked at the booth for YogaBC all three days, meeting lots of friendly faces from yoga teachers to students, great opportunity to network.
  • The tradeshow was smaller than I expected and a lot of really expensive solutions, although one of my favorites (even though I didn’t splurge) were the 3 minute Egg, if you missed out on these or didn’t get to try them out, check out this video; Intro to the 3 Minute Egg
  • The tradeshow seemed to pick up on Sunday, perhaps that was the little bit of rain that we had, but was a lot busier Sunday afternoon than it seemed to have been earlier in the weekend.
  • Sat in on two workshops (Intro to Kids Yoga & How to Teach Yin), both fabulous and left me wanting more, more, more.
  • Certificates for Workshops were an additional cost, not really sure why, with the amount of money lots of people spent to attend the yoga conference, the least they could do is “throw in” a certificate for the classes you attended.

In conclusion, having not been able to attend the yoga conference last year, I found this year to be an insightful, fabulous networking opportunity to build relationships & make some new ones. However, living in Vancouver us Yogi’s are VERY lucky, we get the opportunity to experience many different styles, workshops, retreats and events that happen within our yoga community, so the yoga conference is just an added bonus to a yoga community that already offers so much. If you missed out, no worries, like I said there are LOTS of events happening around the yoga community every week, all you gotta do is find them.

What were your thoughts about the Vancouver Yoga Conference? Did you enjoy or does it need some improvements for next year?

Passport To Prana Contest Winners!

Our Passport To Prana contest has closed and we are now ready to announce the 3 lucky winners!

  • Colleen (@ColleenCoplick)
  • Debbie (@debdebbed)
  • Henry (@henryjue)

Congratulations to our winners!

Henry, Debbie and Colleen, please email your mailing addresses to [email protected] and your cards will be sent to you ASAP!

Once you have received your card in the mail, please refer to the website http://passporttoprana.com/home.php for participating studios in and around Vancouver. Also, your card will need to be activated on their website before you attend your first class. Your card will expire on July 31, 2011.

For those interested, there’s still time to purchase a Passport To Prana card on their website ($30).

Thanks to everyone for entering and keep posted on our site for more yoga contests in the future 🙂

Win A Passport To Prana Card!

We blogged about the awesome card last week. Now, Passport to Prana is offering our readers the chance to win 1 of 3 Passport to Prana cards!

How to enter the Passport To Prana contest:

1. Post a comment below.

2. Or, Tweet following on Twitter: @VanYogaReview @PassportToPrana contest: http://bit.ly/baKjGu

3. If you comment AND Tweet, your name will be entered twice into the draw!

Contest ends September 30th at 12:00pm.

Good luck everyone!

Win Free Show Pass To Vancouver Yoga Conference!

The Vancouver Yoga Conference will be taking place September 30 – October 3, 2010. And the Show will be from October 1 – 3, 2010!

SHOW FLOOR ADMISSION IS $15 FOR ALL 3 DAYS AND INCLUDES:

  • Continuous Yoga Classes in the Yoga Garden
  • Continuous Demonstrations, Workshops and Lectures
  • Over 100 Exhibitors to Enhance and Educate you
  • Hundreds of New Products and Trends to Learn About
  • Live, Love, Laugh, Sample, Sip, Shop, Relax, Restore, Rejuvenate

YOGA CONFERENCE:

  • Individual Class Prices range from $46 – $19836
  • Internationally Renowned Faculty
  • 130 Workshops

SHOW HOURS:

Friday October 1, 2010 ~ 4:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Saturday October 2, 2010 ~ 10:00 am – 8:00 pm

Sunday October 3, 2010 ~ 10:00 am – 6 :00 pm

Check out our review from last year’s 2009 Yoga Conference in Vancouver.

LOCATION:

Vancouver Convention Centre – Hall A (Under the Sails)

How to enter to win a FREE SHOW FLOOR ADMISSION PASS:

1. Tweet this: @VanYogaReview Win Free Pass to #Vancouver Yoga Show http://bit.ly/aA4Lae

2. Post comment below (include email address so we can contact the winner).

3. If you tweet and post a comment below, your name will be entered twice into the draw.

Contest ends on Saturday, September 18th at 11:59pm.

Good luck!

For more info about the 2010 Vancouver Yoga Conference & Show, visit their website here.

Yoga Coffee In Vancouver

Yoga coffee, sounds like an oxymoron doesn’t it?! The thought of being jacked up on caffeine and then proceeding to a Yin Yoga class, just seems counter-intuitive.

Searching for a new morning brew, I purchased a bag of Ethical Bean ‘Mellow’ at London Drugs – it was on sale for only $7.99! (Broadway & Yew location has lots in stock.) The packaging includes a picture of a woman in sukhasana:

Mellow Medium Roast
Ommm. Serenity Now. Medium body, nutty aroma and a sweet brightness. Stirring memories of hazelnuts and caramelized sugar.

It actually IS very mellow, and has low acid. Their new bags have a zip-lock seal for freshness. Love this.

Have an iPhone? Download their free app and scan the emark to receive information about the specific beans in the bag you purchased.

The first time I tasted Ethical Bean was at the downtown Costco while they were offering samples of their ‘Lush’ coffee.  I was sold. Ethical Bean roasts their beans right here in Vancouver, BC. Anytime I have a chance to make my purchase Fair Trade, organic and local – I jump on it. This company creates environmental initiatives to help out in our local community and those of their coffee growing partners.

Namaste to Ethical Bean 🙂

Don’t Step On My Yoga Mat

One of my pet-peeves during yoga class is when people occasionally step on my yoga mat. Normally, it doesn’t bother me that much, but when it happens with sweaty feet during a hot yoga class at Bikram’s or West Coast Hot Yoga-it grosses me out!

Here’s an excerpt of a hilarious list of other things you should NOT do during your yoga class:

  1. Cultivate Ujjayi breath that rivals Darth Vader. Did I sign up to have phone sex with you? I don’t think so. I don’t need to feel like I’m on the wrong end of a prank phone call as I attempt to quiet my mind.
  2. Om, Sat Nam, etc. like your life depends on it. A yogi/ni is not made by the volume of his or her chanting. I promise. There’s no door prize for being the loudest Om-er.
  3. Step on the mats of others. If you’re a foodie, think of it as a dinner plate. If you’re religiously or spiritually inclined, imagine those mats are sacred texts. You wouldn’t put your foot in either spot, would you? This kind of disrespect could get you an ass kicking in a place you’d least expect it.

For the rest of Y is for Yogini‘s top 10 list click here.

Tell us your yoga class pet-peeve in the comments below 🙂

Happy Yoga Month

September is Yoga Month! In order to bring awareness to the different styles and the benefits of a yoga practice, September is designated Yoga Month to help build awareness.

Generally these type of awareness building initiatives tend to be only focused on the good ol’ USA, however, there are lots of studios events happening in our own backdoor to help YOU take advantage and celebrate Yoga Month. Listed below are some of the ones I have found:

Here is a clip about the National Yoga Month from 2009, from the founders:

What are you doing to celebrate National Yoga Month, perhaps its a personal 30 Day Challenge for the month of September or taking advantage of some of the FREE yoga listed above or maybe you are hosting your own events to celebrate National Yoga Month, or maybe you are finally taking that friend to experience a yoga class with you, whatever it is; tell us, we want to hear how you are celebrating!

Happy National Yoga Month!

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