Release and Energize – Yoga with Lindsey

Greetings fellow and (hopefully) future yoga-doers.
 As with so many things these days, recording a Yoga class and having it “out there” for all to see is new to me, unfamiliar and somewhat scary.
  We all get used to doing things one way, over and over, so that it becomes routine and comfortable.  For me, that comfortable and routine world was teaching Hatha on Tuesday evenings….at the studio…”in person”….nestled snuggly amongst many familiar faces I’d grown to know and love.
However, we are now exploring uncharted waters…and most, if not all of us, have had to bravely dive into something totally unknown.
In person, we can joke and laugh together.
In person, I can quickly and easily modify the class depending on the students, the energy level, the mood.
In person, I can witness human connection and a beautiful feeling of togetherness.
At this point, nobody quite knows exactly when we’ll be able to gather and practice “in person”…. I KNOW that time will come again, but for now, let’s embrace what IS available to us…. even if it’s not what we’re used to.
This class was recorded with love and with all of my fellow yoga students in mind and heart.  It focuses on RELEASING stress, tension and, in particular, expectations.
Enjoy with curiosity & compassion!
Perhaps we’ll meet again for a second video?
To practice with Lindsey click here
Missing you….
Lindsey
Lindsey Lambden

Day 29 of Amber’s 30 days of yoga support

Namaste to you dear one, the light in me sees the light in you

Welcome to day 29 of our 30 days of yoga together.  I hold so much gratitude in my heart for YOU, for accepting my invitation on this journey, and here we are, day 29.  Our time together is certainly not coming to an end, and I sincerely hope you continue to cultivate a daily practice bringing in more of what resonates with YOU.  Perhaps you have given yourself the space to dive into your practice in a new way and perhaps you’ve allowed more time to simply sit in silence and integrate.

“Oh, I’ve had moments, and if I had to do it over again, I’d have more of them.  In fact I’d try to have nothing else.  Just moments, one after another, instead of living so many years ahead of each day.”         

N. Stair, (85 year old woman)

Where ever you are this is a beginning.  The real gift is when we are able to wake up everyday and approach our life with the attitude that today, and this moment, is a beginning.  This is one of the basic fundamental attributes to a  mindfulness based practice and life approach, is to enter every experience as if it was the first time you had ever been there, your breath, movement, relationships, problems, the gift of a meal, the taste of a fresh berry or a square of chocolate, can you allow yourself the opportunity to enter your moment to moment life experience as if it was the first time.  A beginning.

Every day I approach my mat I unroll it with reverence, acknowledging I am being given a fresh opportunity to discover myself.

“If we have ideas about how our practice should unfold, these will often get in the way, preventing us from honoring the phase that is actually with us.

Jack Kornfield

Today we’re going to explore a beautiful posture of strength, control, balance and grace.  This is going to look different for each of us – and it will look different every time you enter the posture. Be sure to hold on to support if you need assistance with balance postures, move softly into the different phases and depths available for you to explore in this shape, you may just hold your foot behind your body, you may just bend your leg at the knee, you may tip just slightly forward, or you may dive right into Natarajasana – dancer, a posture of grace.  Wherever you are is perfect because where ever you are is where you are – you can’t be anywhere else.  I would love for you to be very gentle with your practice today, allow the quality of a beginners mind, and move with curiosity.

To view the practice click here

Thank you for joining me today, it is an honor and a great privilege to be welcomed into your day.

With so much love, till tomorrow

AmberWIN_20200411_08_17_02_Pro

 

 

Day 28 of Amber’s 30 days of yoga support

Sat Naam and Namaste!  Welcome to day 28 of Amber’s 30 days of yoga support during this challenging time.

“I was coming to understand that at its deepest levels, life it not a problem, but a mystery….At one time or another, each of us confronts an experience so powerful, bewildering, joyous, or terrifying that all efforts to see it as a problem are futile.  Each of us reaches the end of reason’s rope…… we can either grip harder and get nowhere, or we can let go, and fall.  For what does mystery ask of us?  Only that we be in its presence, that we fully, consciously hand ourselves over.  That is all, and that is everything.” – Philip Simmons

I am so grateful you are joining me today.

We had a morning today where the wheels definitely fell off!  You know those mornings….or is it just in my family?  I believe we can all relate if we’re being honest, and during this time of “mystery” perhaps the wheels are a little less stable.  Today we took a different approach.  The sun was (and is still radiantly) shining, and we heeded its call.  Putting our bodies in motion with our running shoes on we moved the chaotic energy through us.   Walking, jogging, frogs, dancing – just move, remember it’s all energy and it’s up to us how we use that energy.

When we live with a mindfulness approach to our moment to moment life we can recognize what’s not working and when we’re starting to grip a little harder.  Slowly we allow ourselves the opportunity to make different choices that are truly more in alignment with our evolving selves.

Running shoes off, we decided to create this little practice for YOU.  The sequence we move through today is a simple posture set, but there is a deep wisdom and a gentle but far reaching release available in each of the shapes we will be guiding you through.

As we explore butterfly and camel, we are also subconsciously inviting space into long held stress and memories in the body.  Try to stay present with your breath while you’re here in the postures.  These powerful asana’s help us to release the layers  and the patterns that take up residence in our body, the layers that once served you – but if we reflect and reassess we realize they are no longer helpful.  In this simple practice, we respectfully create space and if you allow yourself time to integrate you may just notice you feel more easeful, and happier as you roll up your mat today.

To view the practice click here

If you’re able this is a beautiful practice to sink into in your backyard, allow the sunshine to energize your body and your soul.

Thank you for being with me today, this is a special little window for me

Remember you’re not alone, we’re all in this together.

With so much love, till tomorrow

Amber (and Noah)

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Photo by EDD Sylvia Nenntwich on Pexels.com

Day 27 Yoga Support with Amber

“That which we constantly affirm becomes true for us” – Louise Hay

Welcome to day 27!! Sat Naam and Namaste!!  When I close my eyes, I see your light shining so brightly!

Thank you for being on this journey with me, my heart is full of gratitude to each of you!

Including today we have 4 more days of daily practices together.  If you choose, you can start back at day 1 for another 30 days, the videos will always be available for you to return to.  I will continue to do a weekly video for you, a little bit of a longer practice to help support you during this time, and when we’re on the other side of this.  This has been a powerful way to connect with each of you, through the gift of our breath and our collective practice.

Today, Can you take a moment and close your eyes, and repeat that simple word, with softness?  Can you simply begin today by repeating today on a wave of nourishing breath.

Try not to focus on the details that haven’t even happened yet, we do that alot – predicting often a negative unraveling of a day that hasn’t even started yet.  We base these predictions on past experience and we feed those feedback loops in our brain often attracting those same experiences to keep happening in a similar way.  I wonder if today could be different, no expectations of how the day will unfold, just softly inviting the day to simply be what it will be, a healthy alternative is to affirm in your mind and simply invite the quality of ease, openness and peace into your day, not with expectation but simply an invitation.  Much of our experience is based on our attitude and how we approach what we are faced with.  This breath, this moment, this day – nothing has to come – invite ease, notice your breath.  Notice how your day unfolds from this place of peace and openness.

Jon Kabat-Zin reminds us that as long as we’re breathing there is more right with us than there is wrong with us, and maybe going even further, rather than focusing on the rightness or wrongness can we just experience breath with gratitude?  Take a few minutes to sit with this…………

In our practice today, we’ll be exploring our hips and releasing through the low back.  We hold alot of physical tension in this part of our bodies, as well as alot of our deep often uncomfortable emotions.  Join me as we move through a stretching sequence that is wonderful for releasing scar tissue in the hips, opening up the joints, releasing the muscles of the buttocks,  and open up the tissues of the lower back.  Moving through these postures can also help us to naturally feel more at ease in our own bodies – physically and emotionally.  I encourage you to move through the sequence with me, and then take some time on your own, taking at least 5 or 6 breaths, if not more,  in each phase of the sequence.

To view the practice click here

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out, I’m here.

Have a beautiful day, and if you’re thoughts start to get ahead of you, can you come back to the breath with kindness and simply repeat today, ease, peace, today.

With so much love, till tomorrow

Amber

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Day 26 Yoga Support with Amber

And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul”  – John Muir

Welcome to day 26 of our 30 days of yoga together.

What a time, presenting a doorway for each of us to dive into a deeper understanding and inner knowing of what we all need to thrive, that looks different for each of us.

I hope you’re finding time everyday to reconnect with that place of ease inside of you, and that you have tools in place to help you arrive there.

Today we spent our morning out in the woods, and were in awe at all the winged beings and their beautiful birdsong.  Our practice today is inspired by the eagle.  A powerful posture, Garudasana in sanskrit.  When we explore Eagle, we can connect with this upward spiral in our inner experience, as the body folds and wraps around itself, directing our energy upwards.  All our precious internal organs receive a flushing of blood as we compress our extremities and breathe in this majestic shape.

Some good questions to ask in this posture are:  Where I am in my life?  How do I need to spread my wings?  How do I need to conserve my energy?  What are the obstacles in my life?  What is being revealed?  Can I face challenges with strength, control and grace? How do I soar in my life?  

As you approach the physical posture, can you be there for a few breaths with that single pointed concentration, maintaining balance?  Please modify the shape in any way your body needs today.

To view the practice click here

Thank you so much for joining me, it is an honor working through these 30 days with you.  Such a powerful project infused with love and compassion for each of us.

Take your time with this posture, slowly entering and releasing out.  Take a little time once you’re finished to sit with the experience – let yourself integrate.

May you feel the expanse of your own wings, and know that you can safely open them.

So much love, till tomorrow

Amber

eagleJohn Muir Quote

Day 25 Amber’s Yoga Support

“Genius is the ability to renew one’s emotions in daily experience”

Paul Cezanne

Welcome to day 25 of Amber’s 30 days of yoga support during this challenging time.

I am SOOOOO grateful you are here today!

How are you getting through this time in this chapter of your life?  What is keeping you lifted, and inspired to get up everyday and start again with so many unknowns?  Are you able to reflect on perhaps what you do know you would like your life to look and feel like when we once again shift into a new normalcy on the other side of this?  Are you able to put the unknowns aside, and instead focus what you do know to be true for you right now.  That is my challenge for you today.

I love the above quote by french artist Cezanne, for if we don’t take time to integrate and renew the experiences of our life then we never actually allow ourselves to grow and truly flourish, into the genuis inside of each of us.

The ways we renew ourselves, on a daily basis, dictate how we thrive in our bodies and our minds.  Today we’ll be exploring a restorative posture, a very powerful restful practice to bring you back to your center.

In the video I offer you a few different suggestions to try, all different approaches to being in legs up the wall.  If your day allows, I encourage you to spend at least 10 – 15 minutes here, give yourself permission to fully experience and integrate this time on your mat (or in your bed).

This particular posture is very healing for our nerves, it’s a wonderful practice for when we’ve been going through a time of stress, or we just feel depleted. It also relieves pressure and heaviness in the legs.  Taking this time is like giving yourself a little gift everyday.

To view the video click here

Thank you for joining me today, you inspire me in so many ways.

The world needs your genius, so please take care of yourself.

With so much love, until tomorrow

Amber

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Photo by Maria Gulyaeva on Pexels.com

Day 23 Yoga Support with Amber

“I wish you mouthfuls of laughter and warm hands and bowls of nourishing soup and starry glittering at the periphery of your eyes as if someone is tapping you gently on the shoulder, whispering a song from your childhood that makes you smile and weep at the same time, in a good way, like when you know who you are.

I wish you a loving letter from an old friend when you least expect it, with words that warm you like small sticks of kindling that catch and smoke and smell of ancient sandalwood forests and the tiny blue birds that sing at night, and a low slung moon, lying on her back, like a bowl of light. “  – Meredith Heller

I came across these words today, and they made me smile.  I hope they do the same for you

Welcome to day 23 of our 30 days of yoga support during a challenging time.  It is an honor to be welcomed into your day, one I don’t take lightly.  Thank you.

I hope you’re doing okay, and that you’re carving out some time to reconnect with nature in the  midst of all of this.  Such a powerful way for us to fill our reserves, by simply walking through the woods, or sitting by a tree or the water.  It always amazes me how relaxed I feel when I take that time.

Today we’ll be exploring a powerful breath practice for your immune system, and your inner vitality.  This breath is called the breath of ten, and it helps to move stagnation through the body, increase your lung capacity, stimulate and support the lymph nodes in your arm pits helping to cleanse and detoxify your breast tissue, your lungs, your thoracic cavity, and it assists in pulling the lymph up from your lower extremities (just to name a few benefits).  This is a potent practice which helps us to be able to better overcome pathogens, bacteria and viruses we encounter.

To view the practice click here

The basic practice:  Sit in a comfortable position with a straight spine (ensure your body is comfortable).  Your elbows are bent and the forearms and hands are relaxed in a clapping position about a foot apart.  Your hands move in and out like you are clapping – inviting a flapping movement at the armpits (pumping fluid through the axillary lymph nodes), your hands do not make contact.  This will make more sense once you watch the video.  Concentrate on the energy between your hands.  Your breath is timed with the  movement of your hands, inhaling with 5 powerful strokes of breath in through your nose, exhale in five powerful strokes out through the mouth.  Try to maintain the rhythm and the movement with the breath.  Start with 3 minutes, and slowly you can increase your time.  Your eyes are closed down and once you settle into the practice allow your internal gaze to fall at the point between your eyes.

Make sure you take some time once you are finished to sit in stillness, sense what is happening inside of you and allow yourself to integrate the practice. This is an important step every time we come to our mats.

I am so grateful you joined me today, and I can’t wait to check in with you again tomorrow.

“The source of a true smile is an awakened mind.  Smiling helps you approach the day with gentleness and understanding” – Thich Nhat Hanh

My love travels with you

Big giant love filled hugs, Amber

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Day 22 Yoga Support with Amber

Welcome to day 22 of our 30 days of yoga support during this challenging time.

I am so grateful you are here.

Today we also honor Earth Day, a day to remember our place and our collective responsibilities to the earth.  I am hopeful you are able to take some time today to connect with nature, and reflect on why it’s important to care. How can you continue to do your part, and perhaps make some changes as we are continuously educated on how  our choices directly and indirectly effect the health of our planet.

We are being guided to deeply consider all of our actions right now.   This is our home, and what we do matters.

“When the animals come to us, Asking for help, 

Will we know what they are saying?

When the plants speak to us, In their delicate, beautiful language,

Will we be able to answer them? 

When the planet herself, Sings to us in our dreams,

Will we be able to wake ourselves, and act?”

– Poet Gary Lawless

When we explore the true roots of our yoga practices we can trace them back to the earth.  The asana’s (postures) and pranayama practices (breathwork) are inspired by the earth.  We can immerse ourselves in the experience of tree as we really connect with our own roots, with mountain as we feel ourselves solid and steady on the earth reaching up towards the sun.  We move through sun salutations honoring the life giving energy of the sun.  We honor the creatures that walk and fly, those we co-inhabit this planet with, the eagle and the cobra.

Allow your practice today to open a gateway to reconnecting with the earth and all the glorious creatures we share this home with.  Feel the pulse of the earth in the pulse and beat of your heart, the flow of breath in your lungs, continuously moving, like the water flowing by.  We learn so much from the wisdom of our natural environment.  The more we give ourselves time to reflect and connect, the more we’re able to truly understand why it’s important to care.

I’m attaching a few video’s for you today

To view today’s’ practice, day 22 click here

I’m attaching a special little gift from the earth here

To revisit our nature based practice exploring tree, on day 3 click here

Thank you for joining me today.

Deep breaths, we’re going to get through this and be stronger on the other side.

Be gentle with yourself, you’re pretty precious

Till tomorrow,

Love Amber

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Day 21 Yoga Support with Amber

Sat Naam and Namaste

Welcome to day 21 of our 30 days of yoga support.

In our lives, change is unavoidable, loss is unavoidable. In the adaptability and ease with which we experience change, lies our happiness and freedom.” Buddha

I am so grateful you are here today.  In the treasure of our practice is where we support ourselves to increase our resilience.  We give ourselves the gift of self love and provide care for our bodies and our minds, we learn acceptance, and find that spark of ease and happiness within.

Join me today as we explore some dynamic movements to release the imprint of stress on our bodymind, and support the healthy flow of cerebral spinal fluid (the fluid that supports and nourishes our spinal chord and our brain). Our sequence today helps to lift our energy and let go of tension.

To view the practice click here

I would encourage you to move through the full sequence, starting with your breath and then exploring cat/cow transitioning into the anahatasana/sphinx to child’s pose/cobra and spending some time in child’s pose to rest.  If child’s pose isn’t’ comfortable for you, then spend a bit of time on your back, give yourself some time to integrate.

These are just suggestions, make sure you explore these movements in a way that makes sense for you TODAY, your practice may look completely different than these suggestions and that is perfect.

My love travels with you, as the snow falls on this spring morning,

I look forward to being with you tomorrow.

Much love

Amber

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Day 20 of Amber’s Yoga Support Challenge

Welcome to day 20 of our 30 day’s of yoga support during this challenging time!

Today we’ll be exploring a powerful stress management practice, called Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR).

This simple technique involves the tensing and relaxing of all of the muscles in your body in a sequential order.   By tensing your muscles before relaxing them, you enable yourself to relax them more thoroughly after you release, letting go of physical and mental tension more effectively.

Dr. Herbert Benson is a pioneer in mind body medicine and was one of the first doctors in the 60’s and 70’s to bring alternative stress management  techniques, including progressive relaxation, into the medical arena.  Research shows that through this technique, as we move tension through the body with the ultimate goal of relaxation, we  also release psychological tension and stress, minimizing our stress reactivity and decreasing our experience of chronic stress.  Trying these practices can help to support many chronic health problems that are caused or exacerbated by stress, which I think we can safely say stress plays a role in all of our health concerns.

We can also let go of those old wounds, the stories we’re still carrying that no longer serve us.

Did you know that through a daily practice of stress release and management, we build our reserves?  We give our nervous systems a chance to re-calibrate and integrate the experiences of our lives, rather than overloading our bodies and our minds.  We also give ourselves an invitation to return to a state of equilibrium on a daily basis through our practice.

Today we’ll be moving through a shortened version, but you can take up to 30 minutes slowly moving through each part of your body separately and then finishing with a few rounds of full body tension followed by complete relaxation.  You want to make sure you give yourself at least 5 – 10 minutes to rest in the final relaxation state, inviting your awareness to follow the flow of breath, dropping deeper into a restorative place where you heal from.

To view the practice today click here

With regular relaxation breaks, over time your whole self will feel lighter, more easeful and more at home in yourself.

I would like to send out a special message to all the people at Country Haven today, I know we have lost more members of our community.  My heart is with all the families who have lost their loved ones at Country Haven.  My heart is with all the workers that are navigating this scary time.  My heart is with all those we have lost during this virus, sending them love on their journey, praying no more lives will be taken.

Thank you for joining me today, it is an honor to be with you on this journey.

You are so very loved, and cherished.

Thank you also to my husband, Jay Young, for the beautiful musical accompaniment in yesterday, and today’s videos, a little extra hug holding you in your practice.

Till tomorrow

Much love, Amber

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