Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

  • I teach Nia, yoga and stretch!

    Nia: Thurs at 9 am

    Yin Yoga: Mons at 11:30 am

    Gentle Yoga: Tues at 10:30 am and Thurs at 6:00 pm

    Stretch: Thurs at 10:30 am

    Please see my website for details! I sub for the City of San Jose and the YMCA so check my website for dates and times!

    I am also available for private Nia / yoga / Personal Training!

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  • My Bloggey Past

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Four Tattvas For Yin Yoga Practice

Posted by terrepruitt on September 16, 2019

I’ve been preaching about the four principles of a Yin Yoga practice. The Complete Guide to Yin Yoga calls them tattvas and it lists three.  Tattva is Sanskrit and it is said to mean truth or principle. Some say it stands for “thatness” or reality. So we could say that these are four intentions or goals of a Yin Yoga practice.

1) Come into the pose at the appropriate depth.

I was actually taught to come into a pose about 80% of what I can do or could do. So, first of all, there is a difference between what you can do in a 30 second hold and what you can do in a three to five minute hold. Start in a pose at 80% of what you can do and hold. Then see how it goes. There is always time to go further into the pose. Often time there is “sinking” or “relaxing” into a pose and if you started out at that 100% mark there would be no room to sink and relax. So starting out at about 80% gives you room to lengthen into it.

2) Resolve to be still.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit, City of San Jose Exercise Classes, Cambrian Yoga & Cardio Dance, CYCD, Yin YogaIt is such a challenge to be still. Sometimes movement might not even come because there is discomfort we might just feel the NEED to move our hair, adjust our clothes, or examine that spot/lint/crumb on our pants/leg/mat. But the change comes from the stillness. The Qi moves when there is relaxation in the muscles and there isn’t something – a muscle contraction – blocking it. So resolve to be still, this does not include the sinking or relaxing into a pose. What I have experienced and what I see is that just happens and is almost imperceptible if not something that the participant is not even that aware is happening.  It is the actually moving around that you don’t want to do.

3) Hold for a time.

Since the tissue we are working with is not elastic and it really won’t stretch in the same way a muscle can be stretched it needs time to change and “lengthen”. Again, most of that sinking from relaxation doesn’t even come until after the one minute mark so the longer you can hold the more time the tissue will have to change.

4) Play your edge.

This comes after the “appropriate depth” idea. Once you have come into a pose at the 80% of what you can do, you want to push the boundary. That does not mean push into a pose that just means allow your body to sink into or relax into it until you are sure you can’t go any more. That doesn’t even mean go to you 100%, necessarily, it could . . . but it just depends. Remember every time we come to the mat it is different. There are days that we know we shouldn’t be doing what we consider to our 100% and then there are days that we are convinced we can do 110%. So that edge, that 100% is constantly changing and we can play that edge every time. That is where we affect the change.

So these are four principles that I learned that should be applied every time we come to the mat for a Yin Yoga Practice.  Starting at 80% will allow us space to sink/relax and give the body a change to lengthen.  Staying still will allow the Qi to flow.  Holding the pose give our bodies the time it needs for us to sink/relax and the Qi to flow.  And playing that edge ensures we will allow for change.

Do you have any tattvas you bring to you mat when doing Yin Yoga? 

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Blue Kitty

Posted by terrepruitt on September 13, 2019

My friend went on vacation and brought this back for me.  I love it.  It is blue – plus – and it is a kitty – BIG plus.  I have it on my table where I see it often.  I wanted to share it with you for my Friday Photo today.  I probably should have shared a picture of my black cat since it is Friday the 13th!

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Rhythmic Breathing Health Helper

Posted by terrepruitt on September 11, 2019

I’ve written several posts about pranayama, the fourth limb of yoga, the practice or control (yama) of life force (prana), basically breathing techniques or exercises. I’ve posted about Dirgha or 3 Part Breath, Samavrtti or Equal Breath, Ujjayi or Victorious Breath/Ocean Breath, and Sitali or Cooling Breath. In those posts I have mentioned that I believe that all of us are familiar with the idea that you can take a breath to calm down or to slow down. I believe that most of us understand that a breath can do those things. Well, I am thinking there are other studies and papers out there that talk about how breath can help with physical changes, but I recently made note of very small study done in 2001 by a group of professors and physicians in Italy. Their report concluded that “Rhythm formulas that involve breathing at six breaths per minute induce favourable psychological and possibly physiological effects.”

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The report mentions reciting Ave Maria in Latin, yoga chants, or the rosary. These recitations caused a rhythmic breathing that equaled six breaths per minute. And 10 second breaths or six breaths per minute were the key to a consistent heart rate variability and baroreflex sensitivity.

A consistent heart rate variability can be a sign of good health as could baroreflex sensitivity. The heart rate variability/HRV is “a measure of the variation in time between each heartbeat”1. The baroreflex is “(or baroreceptor reflex) is one of the body’s homeostatic mechanisms that helps to maintain blood pressure at nearly constant levels.”2

So, this is just another small confirmation that pranayamas can help counter the stress we all face every day.  The specific type of breathing that is consistent and rhythmic allowing for a ten second/6-breath-per-minute breath.  You could do a 4-1-4-1 Samavrtti type of pranayama, where you inhale for 4 seconds, hold for 1, exhale for 4, and hold for one.  That would total 10 seconds.  Or you could do that same type of count with the Ujjayi breath.

The report just acts as a guide to possibly help one decide on a length of breath.  Just another tool to help us in our yoga practice or our daily lives.

Do you ever find yourself taking a calming breath?  Do you ever use breathing techniques?  Is pranayama part of your yoga practice?

1-https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/heart-rate-variability-new-way-track-well-2017112212789

2-https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baroreflex

 

Posted in Yoga/PiYo/Pilates | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Short Straws

Posted by terrepruitt on September 9, 2019

Every once in a while I like to have a cocktail and usually cocktails include ice . . . at least the one I drink.  (Hubby’s Moscow Mule)  But I don’t like to drink out of the glass and have the ice get on my lip or smash into my face. I like to use straws. Well, I have A STRAW. I think it was long, but I cut it to fit our copper mugs. I have been using it for over a year. I decided I wanted to get some reusable straws to that I don’t have to keep using the same ONE STRAW. I had been looking at them, but then it occurred to me that I don’t want a long straw, I wanted a short ones. So I jumped on good ol’ Amazon recently and bought some.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit, City of San Jose Exercise Classes, Cambrian Yoga & Cardio Dance, CYCD, Yin YogaI was not really paying attention to what I was buying because they were pretty affordable so I just ordered them. I hadn’t seen the listing show that it came with a brush as did a lot of the other ones, so I was very pleasantly surprised when I read the box when it arrived and it said it included a brush. I also hadn’t seen that the bottoms were angled . . . also a big plus.

Well, so far we have used them once and we both liked them. See, normally my husband doesn’t even get a straw because we have ONE STRAW, but now we have enough for him to use one, too. He was rather happy about that. And I think he really enjoyed drinking his cocktail via straw.

He was pleasantly surprised that it was sturdy enough to use as a stirrer. It really turned out to be necessary because we were sprinkling powdered ginger into our drinks.  We weren’t drinking Moscow Mules at the time.

Anyway . . . I am just sharing another purchase that turned out really good so far. Granted, we have only used them once. So we will see how they hold up.

They are not the prettiest of colors, but . . . I wasn’t really concerned about that. I was looking at length and material. I wanted to be able to put it in the dishwasher and these are able to be run through.

Do you prefer to use a straw when drinking a drink with ice?  Do you have straws at home?

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Vineyard And Rolling Hills

Posted by terrepruitt on September 6, 2019

I recently took a trip with my friends to visit a friend that has relocated to another state. We have known each other since Junior High School. One of the days we were there we decided to check out a winery since Oregon is really on the map when it comes to wine. We visited this beautiful place.

Oregon winery landscape is worthy of a Friday Photo spot, don’t you think?

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Twelve Principal Sinew Meridians

Posted by terrepruitt on September 4, 2019

I was looking over my Yin Yoga posts recently and I see that in my first one I mention that my training focused on the twelve principal sinew meridians. In subsequent post I split up the sinew meridians into categories: legs, arms, yin, yang, I even describe their points of origination or jing well points, but I never list them all in one post. To briefly clarify, the sinew meridians are different from the primary meridians as they are along the periphery or surface of the body. They are not as deep as the primary meridians and they are more of an area instead of an “exact” channel, so they are more easily targeted by Yin Yoga. They are not necessarily used for acupuncture because with acupuncture there is need for more precision. I can’t speak for you, but I find myself wanting to see a list so that is what this post is.

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Small Intestine (Yang)
Heart (Yin)
Triple Heater (Yang)
Pericardium (Yin)
Large Intestine (Yang)
Lung (Yin)

Bladder (Yang)
Gall Bladder (Yang)
Stomach (Yang)
Liver (Yin)
Spleen (Yin)
Kidney (Yin)

 

 

 

The first six are arm meridians and the last six are leg meridians.

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As I mentioned I have several posts regarding twelve principal sinew meridians:

Jing Well Points Of The Feet

Yin Leg Meridians

Yang Leg Meridians

Jing Well Points Of The Hands

Yin Arm Sinew Meridians

Yang Arm Sinew Meridians

I know it is possible to compile a list from my various posts, but it makes more sense to me to have a post with a list.

Have you had an opportunity to try Yin Yoga?

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Perhaps You Know This Carpet

Posted by terrepruitt on August 30, 2019

I should have posted this when I took it, but I didn’t.

A shot of my feet and a “famous” carpet for today’s Friday Photo.

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HELP! Which Emoji Do I Use?

Posted by terrepruitt on August 28, 2019

Do you use emojis? Frankly I am afraid to! I don’t know what half of them mean and sometimes the meaning that is assigned to them is just way off target, in my opinion. I don’t actually text that many people and so I really don’t have that many opportunities to use them – thank God! – but sometimes even then I use them wrong. My most used emoji is the kissing face with a heart*

Face Blowing a Kiss on Apple iOS 12.2 because I primarily only text with people I love; my husband, my niece, three or four of my friends.  I just recently noticed it was winking and promptly forgot that it was.

And, just a side note, what is up with that “FREQUENTLY USED”? I can use an emoji once OR . . . . or really not even USE it, just click on it to see what it is or click on it accidentally and not even send it and it still appears on my “FREQUENTLY USED”. That bugs me because then it takes the place of one I do use, but maybe not “”FREQUENTLY” and then I have to go searching for it again.

Ok, back to the emojis themselves. I recently read a post where there was

Hugging Face on Apple iOS 12.2

 

and

Kissing Face on Apple iOS 12.2

and someone wrote “why the hug and kiss emojis?” I was surprised, I really thought the first one was Jazz Hands and that is how I use it. And you might wonder how one uses Jazz Hands in a conversation . . . well, I can’t really explain that, but I do! So case in point as to why I am afraid to use emojis. I think a lot of them are not what I think they are.

Before I started typing this I did a search to see if the first one was a hug, I found 25 Secret Second Meanings of These Popular Emojis and it said

Open Hands on Apple iOS 12.2is a hug. Again, not sure I would have used X as a hug. But then again those are the SECRET SECOND MEANINGS. I just type HUG or HUGS (or hug or hugs) since I don’t know the correct emoji. I didn’t even read all of the explanations in that article because I don’t see myself needing to know the SECRET meanings.

Ah . . . .looking at the other results; here it is Emojipedia. Now I can use emoji safely. I knew there was a site that would steer me in the right directions I just haven’t looked it up before.

What about you? Do you use emojis?  What do you use the most? Are you going to use emojipedia to see if you are using them “correctly”?  Do you have your own meaning for any of them?

*which I just learned was blowing a kiss, I always use it as I love you and I am kissing you!

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Roasted Parsnips “Fries”

Posted by terrepruitt on August 26, 2019

It will not come as a surprise to many of you that I roasted parsnips. I mean, if you have read any of my recipes you know that I pretty much roast all my veggies. One way I do it is I cut them into strips and call them “fries”. I know, they are not fries as they are not fried, but they are so good and they kinda look like fries, I want to call them that. Sometimes a recipe is something you can use as an idea to make a dish of your own or it is just a guide because you have to figure things out a little bit with your particular oven or even with the specific produce you purchased. Not sure if you have ever thought of making parsnips “fries”, but let me tell you, they are sooooo good roasted. They are odd because they are slightly sweet yet they have a little (teeny-tiny) kick to them.

I have received them in the organic produce box where they were pretty small. And then also when they were larger. The key is to try to cut them to be the same size so they cook evenly. So as with all things they are different sizes so you will probably need to adjust the baking time to suit your desired crispness.

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3 parsnips
olive oil
Season salt

Cut the parsnips into “French fried sized” strips. Spread the “fries” out on a parchment-paper lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with olive oil and seasoned salt. Then turn the oven onto 450° F. Put the pan in the oven and bake for 12 minutes. Take the pan out of the oven, mix up the “fries” and sprinkle with more olive oil and season salt. Then put back in the oven for another 15 minutes.

Here is where you will need to decide if they are done or toss them on the pan and put them back in. Some of them may be done and some may not. Sometimes I remove the done ones (of whatever I am cooking) and put the rest back in the oven. You decide.

When they are done, just serve them with whatever dipping sauce you would like. We don’t dip them. We like them as they are.

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Do you like parsnips? How do you cook them?

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Pink Clouds

Posted by terrepruitt on August 23, 2019

Every once in a while the clouds and the sky get painted. When it happens I usually see a handful of friends post pictures of the clouds and sky. It is a reminder we are all looking up at the same sky.

Here is a shot I wanted to share for my Friday Photo.

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