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Journal Post

 "Where women are respected, there god dwells. Where women are disregarded, there all deeds go in vain." - Manusmriti Tomorrow, March 8, is International Women's Day. On this one day we honor the achievements of women around the world. We also recognize the unfathomable violations that women and girls still face to their basic human rights. Please take some time to acknowledge and appreciate the women in your life - mothers, sisters, grandmothers, daughters, yourselves.
During the dog days of summer we're familiar with the usual methods of cooling off: AC, dips in cool lakes, watermelon, and tall glasses of iced tea or lemonade often do the trick.
Yogis, however, use yet another way; and it's one that we doesn't require paying an electricity bill or going on vacation.
We can cool down through our very own breath. That's right, one particular form of yogic breathing, called sitali (pronounced sheet-ah-lee) in Sanskrit, cools down the body when it's feeling overheated, as well as the mind and heart, when fiery emotions like anger and jealousy arise.
Here's how to do it:
Here's a delicious and refreshing summer treat. While it's dairy and sugarfree, it's certainly high in the yum factor.
Peel and freeze very ripe bananas in a plastic freezer bag. (Very ripe banana skins have no green, they have black or brown marks all over, and the stem is brown or snaps back effortessly.) Freeze a minimum of 8 hours. Depending upon your freezer, it may take at least 12 hours.
Place in a food processor, Champion Juicer or Green Star Juicer, using the blank plate. 1 to 2 bananas is a normal serving. If you using a blender or processor, use a little fruit or berry juice.
Learn how seeking constructive criticism from more experienced teachers can improve your teaching skills.
By Sara Avant Stover
At one point several years ago, Elena Brower, Anusara Yoga teacher and owner of New York City's Vira Yoga, received letters of constructive, critical feedback from two of her teachers-both on the same day.
While this initially ignited her inner critic and bruised her selfesteem, she soon came to realize how fortunate she was to have received such wise and attentive care from her trusted mentors.
"It ultimately brought more clarity to my teaching and gave me more respect for my teachers and more trust in myself," Brower says.
Learn how to use your personal challenges to find your authentic voice, fortify your teachings, and inspire your students.
By Sara Avant Stover
Amy Ippoliti, a senior certified Anusara Yoga teacher based in Boulder, Colorado, felt vulnerable and fragile as she attempted to pull herself together to teach in New York City following September 11, 2001.
"Despite my own grief, I tried to acknowledge the pain everyone felt and uplift them in the face of such madness," she says.
Take your seat in style and discover how what you wear affects how you feel and how
others feel about you.By Sara Avant Stover
Whether you buy your yoga wardrobe from WalMart or Lululemon, you can find just the right fashions to suit your size, budget, and mood. As a student, you might search for styles that show off your body or personality, but, as a teacher, there's more to consider. When you step into the seat of the teacher you become a role model. Then what you wear has a greater impact not only on how you feel but also on how others feel, too. The task is to dress in a way that uplifts your words, actions, and spirit in service to your students and your subject matter.
It may seem complicated to manage the needs of parents and their children in a yoga setting, but parent and child classes offer your students moments of calm and connection amid the chaos of parenting.
By Sara Avant Stover
Being a parent doesn't have to mean zero personal time and a slimmed-down social life. Today yoga classes are not just for the super-fit, super-flexible, and super-serious. Anyone and everyone can find a class that suits his or her needs-including parents and children.
Encourage your students to develop a home practice-and
stick with it.By Sara Avant Stover
I moved to Chiang Mai, Thailand, from New York City when I
was 21. I had been practicing yoga for three years, attending
group classes four times a week. When I moved, though,
things changed. Chiang Mai's yoga scene didn't compare to
the abundant supply of classes I had grown so used to in
New York. If I wanted to keep practicing, I had to do it alone.
Forced by circumstance to foster a home practice, my
relationship with yoga quickly deepened and became more
intimate, more connected. Equipped with a solid foundation
Explore the pros and cons of hands-on guidance and learn to use skillful assists to empower
your students.
By Sara Avant Stover
"Come on! Extend, Karl! Don't be so stingy!" exclaimed Sharon Gannon, cofounder of Jivamukti Yoga, to student Karl Straub, as she assisted him in Ardha Chandrasana (Half Moon Pose). Straub, a Jivamukti Yoga teacher himself, as well as a Thai Yoga Bodywork practitioner, recalls the potency of Gannon's assist-one that he revisits every time he practices that
Use your yoga teachings to inspire social change.
Jyotisha: The Yoga of the Cosmos
Interview with Dr. Katyayani Poole, Ph.D
By Sara Avant Stover
She hadn't spoken to her brother in three years. Despite being a dedicated yoga teacher and practitioner and serving as Core Power's Colorado regional manager, Heather Peterson couldn't find the tools to mend this familial divide.
"All of the other work I've done to heal this relationship" she revealed, "are interesting and good, but to understand things from a larger, karmic perspective through Jyotisha (pronounced joe-teesh-ah) helped me to make bigger changes."
Learn how to take the leap from teaching classes to leading workshops. By Sara Avant Stover Are you the kind of teacher who always finds yourself ending class 10 minutes late? Do you know your teaching routine so well that you could almost do it in your sleep? Or do you keep a list of topics that you would  like to develop and share but can't seem to fit into your regular drop-in classes?
GhandiAfter a month of gratitude, it is time to answer the question, What Impact can the practice of Yoga have on the World? In the spirit of giving, we have several Complimentary Pieces of audio for you to help answer this question. Our feature this month is a discussion with Senior Iyengar Yoga Teacher, John Schumacher. John tackles the question, " Can Yoga Save the World?"
, we were taught how to lead a ceremony. This particular ceremony's intention was to let go of grief from this past year; this could be the loss of a loved one, a job, or anything else which you chose to let go. Three days later on the autumnal equinox our cat died and I found myself holding ceremony for 24 hours which concluded with a full moon circle.
I used to feel uncomfortable expressing any acknowledgment of my monthly menstrual cycle to anyone but myself. I know I am not alone in this. Not only do people get squeamish at the thought of blood, but the idea of it coming from "Down There! Good Heavens!" And on top of that we are taught by society to ignore that which makes us part of the Feminine Divine Creative Essence of the Universe. There is immense power in this so we are not encouraged to access it or own it.
As much as we all hate to admit it, summer has wound down. However, as I mentioned last month, the late summer season into Fall are my favorite seasons. I say seasons because Ayurveda, the science of Life or sister science to Yoga, claims there are six seasons. The additional seasons are the late summer/early fall and the late winter/early spring.
AHHH August! August brings the beginning of my favorite season of the year. The summer months are too hot and the winter months are too cold, but the end of summer and early fall are just right. My emotions are more balanced, my physical body feels more comfortable and everything just seems to flow more easily. Being out of balance can be very uncomfortable and unsettling. There are seasons of the year, cycles of the moon, transits in the sky and just periods in our lives that can bring us slightly out of balance. Two of these periods of life are Adolescence and Menopause.
We have now come to the midpoint of the year, the hottest time of the year, the longest days of the year, the peak of the summer. During these transitional times of year, is the ideal time to rest, cleanse, and reflect on where we are and where we see ourselves headed. Read this beautiful post written by iHanuman Yoga Teacher, Sara Avant Stover, which helps us to formulate an action plan for our goals, dreams and passions. We are happy to have accomplished three of our big goals this year.
May is the month we celebrate our mothers. It may seem strange to make that a plural reference, but for someone who lost her birth mother just 2 months before turning 13, I have had to learn what it means to be a mother from a community of women; sisters, aunts, teachers, colleagues and girlfriends.
It is still cold here in Central Virginia. We have had an unusually precipitous Winter. Personally, I enjoy the change of seasons after several years living in a tropical climate in Southeast Asia. This Winter we have been challenged to slow down, go inside, reflect, meditate and truly hibernate. This can be difficult for those of us who prefer the growth of the Spring Season or the Fire of the Summer Season.
BRRR! It sure is cold out. Winter has finally arrived and looks like it is here to stay. Wintertime is a time when we are asked to be particularly smart and intelligent. Why? Because if you are not, you can freeze to death! Now, thankfully, most of us are not likely in a position to freeze to death but we do run the risk of leaking heat into the cold outside and therefore losing precious energy. Our immune systems can be easily taxed so we must preserve our energy to sustain us through the cold months ahead. We are no longer graced by the bounty of the summer harvest, so we must dig into our root cellars and preserved foods to carry us through.
Little Altars EverywhereMy husband and I just returned from our honeymoon in Greece. As a novice traveling in Europe, everything was magnificent. I have been fortunate to have traveled extensively in Southeast Asia and Africa over the last decade and always knew I would explore Europe later in life.
Colorful TurbinsAhhh August! Summer begins to come to a close; a bittersweet feeling. But this also means the cool winds and vibrant colors of Fall are on their way. iHanuman is busy upgrading our website to offer our teachers and students new web features and communication tools, We hope to roll out our new features next month, September, so please stay tuned.
Lord ShivaHappy July Friends! iHanuman has been busy this month working on upgrading our website to offer our teachers and students new web features and communication tools, so we do not have a new feature this month, but we do have 6 new video classes with Anusara Yoga Teachers Betsey Downing, Ph.D and Jaye Martin.
The Courage to Feel, Matthew Sanford on Yoga, Disability, and Mending the Mind - Body Relationship
By Sara Avant Stover
On a cold and misty Sunday afternoon in 1978 Matthew Sanford and his family were driving home from a Thanksgiving weekend in Kansas City, Missouri. Matthew, then thirteen, was asleep in the backseat when their car crossed a bridge, skidded on a patch of ice, and toppled down a steep embankment. Three and half days later, he woke up from a coma to learn that his life as he had known it was over. Both his father and sister were dead and he was paralyzed from the chest down.
Fine tune your approach to Corpse Pose through an exploration of varying teaching philosophies.
By Sara Avant Stover
Don't Forget to PracticeNamaste! As the year comes to a close, we can already feel the potential energy and hope building for the new year. In the spirit of the holidays, iHanuman would like to offer you a few end-of-the-year gifts in hopes of reducing your stress levels!
First DaffodilsNamaste!
Spring is here and feels great as it invigorates our joints, hearts and minds. We begin to move out of hibernation to feel the sun on our skin. Relationships are renewed and it is a great time to set an intention or sankalpa for our practice as we move into the woody growth phase of spring.
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