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5 things I learnt in my first ever yoga class at AmaSer

Hi, my name is Lucy and I have recently moved to beautiful Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica. I heard all about Avani’s yoga center AmaSer, so I decided to come along to one of her Yin & Restore classes on a Tuesday afternoon. The class started just before the sun was beginning to set and the afternoon was turning to dusk.  Here are five things I learnt about yoga! 

 

  1. Yoga is accessible, even to a newbie like me

I would not exactly class myself as a Yogi. I was a little nervous before going to class. What if I obviously stuck out as a rookie, what if I could not hold a posture? Avani made me feel welcome as soon as I entered the class. She begun by explaining the purpose of the class and demonstrated every pose by including a number of variations to make sure you were comfortable and could really connect with how you held your body – without hurting yourself! It was easy to follow and made me feel like I was being cared for, rather than judged.

 

  1. Even a...
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The Vagus Nerve: The Body’s Natural Muscle Relaxer

Stress is one thing that we all are probably very familiar with, no matter what we do or where we are. Everyone has different ways of dealing with stress; some ways can wreak havoc on the body, and others offer a sweet sense of relief. 

Luckily, yoga is one of the best, natural forms of stress relief. Here’s how it works…

Yoga is much more than the physical asana that we bend and twist ourselves into. Pranayama (breath work) is a practice of guiding and controlling the breathe in order to awaken prana (life force) within the body. One of the most commonly used pranayama techniques is called Ujjayi breath, or victorious breath. Ujjayi breath begins to heat the body from the inside, and simulates the sound of the ocean in the top of the palette and the back of the throat. To practice this breath, you can slightly constrict the back of the throat and breath in and out of the nose. Imagine you are fogging up a car window with your breath making a...

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Energy Boost: Balancing the Ida & Pingala Nadis

Last month I wrote about one good reason to roll out of savasana by rolling to your left (high blood pressure, as stated in Anatomy of Hatha Yoga), but there are good reasons for coming out the more traditional way too.

In my own practice, I use the energetic ida and pingala energy lines to guide my exit from the pose and, more universally, to bring balance and integration into other elements of my day and life.

nadi ida & pingala Costa Rica Yoga teacher training

Ida nadi ends at the left nostril and is the lunar, cooling, feminine, yin, introspective energy channel. Pingala nadi ends at the tip of the right nostril and is the solar, masculine, heating, active yang element of the two twinned channels. These channels are said to criss-cross up from the base of the spine intersecting at each chakra.

Knowing about the ida and pingala nadis and their energetic effects, we can consciously harness the energy to bring a deeper state of balance and wholeness into our on- and off-the-mat experience. Throughout each day and night,...

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What Is Functional Yoga?

anatomy functional yoga tips workshops yoga | Posted Aug 16, 2020

What is Functional Yoga? 

Original Piece by Avani | 2016

Functional Yoga is a term you’ll hear a lot around AmaSer, whether dropping in on public yoga classes or living on site for yoga teacher training.   This is a somewhat new term in the field of yoga (considering the loooong history of the practice), though it is certainly not a new idea.  The history of teaching anatomical alignment in the West served a purpose: to standardize the yoga poses in order to spread the study of yoga more effectively…and to more people much more quickly.  Some of the cues for alignment work with a large population of bodies.  And some do not (for example the dreaded: “shin parallel to the top of the mat” cue).  This concept of standardizing is not uniquely Western.  Iyengar Yoga as well as Yoga Works have sought to standardize these cues for decades.

There was a time that yoga was in such high demand that it was difficult for yoga studios...

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