Yoga with Horses


Yoga with Horses

Practiced by people for more than 5,000 years, yoga helps improve flexibility, muscle tone, blood flow, and oxygen distribution throughout the body. The meditative elements that are included help increase mind and body awareness. As the practice continues to gain global momentum, more and more people are finding innovative ways to include yoga in all elements of their lives, including their relationships with animals.

Linda Guanti, a yoga enthusiast and horse owner in British Columbia, Canada, has found a way to combine her love for yoga and horses through the unique practice of yoga with horses.

“Yoga with horses gives you a way to connect with your horse if you can’t ride,” she says.


Yoga Provides Pain Relief, Improves Flexibility and Athleticism

Linda found traditional yoga several years ago when she was searching for relief from a back injury she suffered following a fall from a horse in her early teens.

“I’d been through years of physiotherapy and painkillers and was still suffering, so I tried including yoga and the benefits were amazing. I had less pain and more flexibility, and as a result, my riding began to improve,” she says.

As Linda’s riding abilities began to improve, …

Yogananda’s The Human Mind: Cities of Thoughts

The speaker in “The Human Mind” declaims from the position of one whose wisdom has given him the ability to choose pleasant, uplifting thoughts, while leaving the “vile-born, unkind” ones behind.

This poem is from the great guru’s soul-inspiring volume of poems, Songs of the Soul . It features five variously rimed quatrains.


First Quatrain: “I love to roam alone, unseen”

The speaker metaphorically refers to cities of the mind and asserts, “I love to roam alone, unseen, / In cities of the human mind.” This statement reminds readers that the mind is a private place in which one can retreat for reflection and also where one can create original ideas for entertainment, education, or enlightenment. This unique quality of the mind is available to every living individual; every human being is born equipped with this remarkable vehicle.

The speaker then reveals that he especially prefers the “streets untrod by crooked thoughts,” which are “vile-born” and “unkind.” The speaker avoids the unholy places where evil lurks, choosing instead the soul-stimulating places that remind him of uplifting and inspiring deeds.


Second Quatrain: “Incognito I wish to wander”

The speaker reminds the reader that within one’s own mind, one is …

Asana Studies: Shoulderstand Pose: Examining the Physical and Philosophical Dimensions of Sarvangasana

This pose is good to insert later in your workout, once your legs and spine have become active. This pose is demanding, and should not be pursued without very strong guidelines or (preferably) an experienced yogi.

Physical Nature of Shoulderstand

The idea behind a Shoulderstand is simple: you invert everything you’ve done in Mountain Pose, up to the shoulders. Your body should extend upwards from the mat, propped up by your hands and pointing at the sky. Do not try Shoulderstand without much more thorough instruction: here is a place to get it on the web if you can’t find a yogi to teach you.

The extent to which your neck should be bent during Shoulderstand is tricky. According to B.K.S. Iyengar, your neck should be at a 90-degree angle with your body, but that assumes you can do so without injury to yourself. It’s most important that you don’t overreach your limits. By approaching discomfort and then taking a step back, you can find out how straight your body should be.

One of the dangers of Shoulderstand is throat tension. You may find that you can feel your pulse very strong in your neck and that you have trouble …

Be Present Here and Now in Yoga: Santosha, Balance and Focus During Yoga Classes

“Now, Here, or Nowhere” is what some yoga instructors might tell you if you drift away from the present moment when you’re in class.

Balance Practice

It can be challenging to stand for the duration of seven or eight breaths (about 30 seconds) in Vrksasana, or Tree Pose (pictured below). Imagine trying to follow these instructions:

  • Stand balanced on one foot.
  • Focus the gaze on a drishti (a single immobile point used to steady the mind).
  • Concentrate on maintaining the posture properly – spiralling the hips open and the raised knee further out and away from the body, using the pressure of the foot on your thigh to keep it up.
  • … and while you’re doing that, try to figure out what you’re going to have for dinner tonight.

One of two things is likely to happen: either you will fall over, or your mind will refuse to leave the present moment (preferably option 2.)

Use the breath to Focus on the present moment

Much of the stress relief available in a regular exercise regimen comes from spending time in the present moment. Most workouts use the breath in synchronization with movement. Weight lifters exhale as they lift their weights …

Yoga that Helps De-stress and Rejuvenate

Yoga that Helps De-stress and Rejuvenate

Everyday, one is exposed to a surge of potential stressors. Meeting deadlines, family pressures, a hectic schedule, and watching the latest tragedy on the news, all send the adrenals in to overdrive. Living in a high-adrenal haze is tough on the body, the mind and the soul.

Yoga is an ideal way to banish stress, ease tension and worries and dispel the gloom. It checks the occurrence of a host of psychosomatic ailments and keeps one energized and cheerful all day.

How Does Yoga Help De-stress?

The Yoga Asanas are great channels to physically work out emotional stress. Focusing on the various poses gives the mind that much-needed holiday. That’s why people feel relaxed and composed after even a 20-minute session of Yoga.

  • The free-flowing and fluid motions of the various Yoga postures help open up the obstructed or blocked Prana (i.e. the vital principle that governs the body). Thus the channels through which the Prana flows get purified.
  • Psychologically, Yoga soothes frayed nerves. The Asanas provide tranquillity and peace by giving the nervous system a chance to rest.
  • A range of psychosomatic and lifestyle disorders can be prevented through a sustained and regular practice of Yoga.

Yoga Asanas to

Ashtanga: Eight Limbs of Yoga Practice

Patanjali’s “Ashtanga” or “eight limbs” of yoga are traditional yogic teachings and practices arranged and documented to form his great work, The Yoga Sutras. In his sutras, Patanjali presents an approach to the ancient system of yoga that is built upon a foundation of social and personal ethics and leads to ultimate liberation of the soul.

Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras and Approach

Patanjali is known as the person who compiled the main axioms of a living yoga tradition. Historically an Ayurvedic doctor, he has also been credited with authoring an Ayurvedic medical text. His systematic approach honors Ayurvedic wisdom in that it presents an empirical path to reaching the highest spiritual goals of yoga, emphasizing healthy social practices as integral to ultimate personal liberation and spiritual freedom.

The system conveys essential teachings and practices of yoga, beginning with the social ethic “Ahimsa” or “not causing harm”. This attitude and lifestyle pillar is an external premise for the deeper yogic practices and higher powers gained through those deeper practices. Considering Ahimsa is a fundamental yogic practice. In order to understand and appreciate the interconnectedness of all things in the universe, an experience of a reduction in harmful practices is required.

An important …

Yoga in Dallas

Whether new to yoga or Dallas, the city’s vibrant, open community offers many styles to explore and helps each individual find his or her own yoga path.

It is often said that everything is big in Texas, and that is certainly the case in Dallas, the city nicknamed the Big D. The yoga community is no exception to the rule. While big hair, oil and shopping are more typically what comes to mind when thinking of the Dallas-Ft. Worth Metroplex, the area is home to a large and vibrant yoga community.

Growth of Yoga in Dallas

Yoga has exploded in Dallas in recent years. According to Ginger Newberg, a 200-hour (HR) Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) who teaches at studios and gyms, the Dallas yoga community has grown tremendously over the past ten years. “We’ve gone from two or three studios in the DFW area to two to three studios within every five square miles in some places,” says Newberg. Part of what’s fueled yoga’s growth is the city’s ability to bring nationally known yoga teachers to Dallas to conduct workshops and other educational programs. The force behind this effort is yoga instructor, Kendall Inman who started Living Yoga Dallas about …