Terre Pruitt's Blog

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

  • I teach Nia, yoga and stretch! SIX group classes a week!

    Nia: Tues and Thurs at 9 am, Fri at 10:15 am

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

    Stretch: Thurs at 10:15 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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Posts Tagged ‘relaxing pose’

A Time For You To Relax

Posted by terrepruitt on August 6, 2018

It is funny how time is. It might seem like you just saw a friend a couple of months ago, but it turns out to be a year or two. You might think you just got your nails done – because they look good still, but it has been three weeks. You might think you just saw a movie, but it turns out it have been years. The same kind of thing bleeds into writing a blog, at least for me. Sometimes I think I want to write about a topic and I think, “I just wrote about that.” Then when I look it up it was years ago. Or the really funny ones to me are when I can’t even find that I posted about it at all! I have been wanting to write again about shavasana, but I was thinking I had just written a post about it. But it turns out I posted about it four years ago. That is so amazing to me because I can hear and see the person (the one I mentioned in the post) talking to me. Anyway, I wanted to say some additional things about shavasana.

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 ClassesLet me alert you to the fact that if you come to my one of my classes, I always reserve time for shavasana. I like to start it at 10 minutes before the class ends. I like to give students about eight minutes. I consider shavasana a very important part of a class. I think of it as a sacred time. It is part of the yoga practice. It is part of the yoga routine. Just as much as all of the other poses, shavasana is about you, the student, and your body. Just like the prior portion of the class it could be the only time in my students’ day where they really are just doing something for themselves. There is nothing to be thinking of and no movement to be made. It is all about relaxation.

I feel it is very important to have this time in the day. Especially with the busy-ness of society. Just taking about 8 minutes to do nothing can help with so much.

Since I whole-heartedly consider this time to be sacred I ask anyone that has to leave before the class is over to leave before shavasana starts. The best way to go, if you have to leave, is to gather your stuff as quickly and quietly as you can and go. None of us mind putting away any props that were used (we only have chairs available) because the remaining students want to get on with their relaxation. When someone leaves – and there are times it is necessary – it kind of changes the atmosphere in the room so the sooner the departure the better so we can get back to the calm.

I usually talk for three to five minutes, slowly having the students focus on relaxation from toe to head. Then they just relax as the music plays. This is the time where the body is allowed to enjoy the sensation – even on an unconscious level – of the poses they just practiced. It allows the body time to adjust before it rushes back into the go-go-go. It is the same for the mind. Shavasana is time and space for the mind to rest. That doesn’t mean that thoughts won’t crop up, but it is the time where you are allowed to just give thoughts a nod and a little push, so they go away and you focus back on your body and your breath. This is the time when you can also take a break from emotions or just let them flow. Also a time when your spirit gets to rest and relax. No need to exercise anything but stillness.

I know it is so difficult for some people in the beginning, but just like with any practice it gets to be something one can do.  And just like all poses some days you may be “better” at it than others.  It is all great, because it is all part of the practice.  The important part – at least to me – is to not skip it.

What are your thoughts on shavasana?  Do you like it?  Do you not like it?

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

Legs Up The Wall Pose

Posted by terrepruitt on May 14, 2015

There are poses and moves that I love to do that I don’t get to do in my classes.  Some of the poses or moves require a wall.  While there are walls in the venues where I teach, they are not always accessible.  Some walls have mirrors and most venues ask people to NOT TOUCH the mirrors.  Some walls have chalkboard, white boards, cork boards, and other types of boards where announcements are hung.  It is not feasible to use the walls with the boards, because we would be touching and possibly damaging the announcements.  And some walls have cabinets and sinks, so that doesn’t work.  Some walls aren’t really WALLS at all, but they are windows, that is almost the same as mirrors in that we shouldn’t be pushing on them and putting our hand prints all over them.  And for some poses it wouldn’t just be hand prints — it just wouldn’t work.  Some walls have ballet barres attached to them so they wouldn’t work for the poses or movements.  And some walls just have too much stuff in front of them to be used.  So in the majority of the classes I teach we don’t use the walls, which is a bummer.  One pose that I have been doing a lot lately on my own is a great one, but it requires a wall.  The name is actually “Legs up the Wall Pose” or the relaxed version of Viparita Karani.

Basically for this pose you lie down on your back with your buttocks up against the wall and your legs straight up on the wall.  The benefits of this pose touted by practitioners of yoga are many.  Including calming the mind, easing anxiety and stress, relieving tired feet and tired lower legs.

According to Yoga Journal:

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose,  Nia at the San Jose Community Centers, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex City of San Jose, San Jose Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo“good for most everything that ails you, including:

Anxiety
Arthritis
Digestive problems
Headache
High and low blood pressure
Insomnia
Migraine
Mild depression
Respiratory ailments
Urinary disorders
Varicose veins
Menstrual cramps
Premenstrual syndrome
Menopause”

I find that I am comfortable in this position for about 15 minutes.  If I am going to stay in this position longer than 15 minutes I like to lie on something, like a folded towel.  I place the folded towel under the lowest part of my back.

This is a relaxing position and should feel very comfortable, so adjust your body in order for it to be comfortable for you.  That could mean moving your body away from the wall, so your buttocks are not touching it.  Move as far away as you need to in order to relax and still be in the pose.  Or it could mean using a bolster under your buttocks and lower back or a towel under your lower buttocks.  Move and adjust yourself and any prop you are using to find something relaxing and comfortable for you.  You may even want to put a rolled towel or something under the arch of your neck for support.  Stay in this position as long as you are comfortable.  Be aware of your feet and any sensation you may have.  I usually roll out of the pose when my feet get tingly.

In some styles of yoga Viparita Karani is done with the legs in the air and a support device or your hands supporting your lower back with elbows bent.  This version gives you the benefit of the legs being higher than your heart, but it is not as relaxing and restful as with your legs against the wall.

If you are in good health and cleared to do yoga and inversions, I would recommend this pose.  It is great for relaxation.  I have been doing it before I go to bed.

Are you familiar with this pose?  Have you ever tried this pose?

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