Monday, November 24, 2014

Serenity of the Soul

"Where there is peace and meditation,
 there is neither anxiety nor doubt."
- ST. Francis of Assisi
(c.1181 - 1226)

Sunday, November 23, 2014

2015 Winter Schedule for PLN Yoga Studio in Prince Albert and Christopher Lake


Just a thank you for a wonderful and busy fall session. Still a few weeks to go but wanted to post the winter classes that will start in the new year.

This upcoming winter I will continue to attend workshops and teacher training courses as well as start some great online anatomy courses for yoga! So, looks like will be another busy and exciting year for PLN Yoga Studio.

If you are interested in any of the classes or would like more information please contact me.

306-982-2737 or 306-981-4703
or by email

Please note that I forgot to change dates for the Wednesday classes.
Wednesday classes run from January 7th to April 1st, 2015.

Pamela Nelson

Monday, November 17, 2014

Virabradrasana II - Warrior II

Virabradrasana II or Warrior II is a strong standing pose  that helps build stamina and will power while aligning the spine.
Mr. Iyengar wrote that this pose can help relieves stiffness in the shoulders and back, tones up the ankles and knees and cures stiffness of the neck.

I started with some photos of the pose showing the variations first.
Below that is a video of a pose.

Start in Tadasana (mountain pose).
Then place the back (left) foot at the wall to give support to the back leg. 
Step the front leg out about 4 feet from the back foot.
Raise the arms parallel to the floor, left hand at the wall for support and to gently push into to release the shoulders down the back.
Cut the right leg out 90 degrees, aligning the front heel with the instep of the back foot.

As you press into the back foot, keeping it straight, bend the front knee to 90 degrees.  Keep the shin, knee and thigh in alignment by moving the knee towards the little toe side.  Gaze over the front hand keeping the breath smooth and steady.
Variation II - have a chair and foam pad
In this variation you can stay in the pose a bit longer.  The chair allows the legs to stretch more, creates width in the pelvis and lift and open the chest.
With the seat of the chair facing in place the chair at the right side of the mat.
Then step the right leg through the chair.
Turn the right leg out 90 degrees as did in pose above.
Bend the right knee to 90 degrees. Use the back rest of the chair to keep the upper body lifting up.
The chair seat supports the right buttock.
Press firmly into the back foot, keep the leg straight by tightening the knee.
Raise the arms parallel to the floor. Turn the head to look over the front hand.

 If a bit taller use the foam block on the seat of the chair.
This is Virabradrasana II in quicktime.  Fun to watch.
 Part I
This is my first attempt at uploading a video to my blog.
Even though only about a minute and a half I had to divide the pose into two short videos.
I will try and figure out how to upload all as one video for the next one.
 Part II
Pamela Nelson

Friday, November 14, 2014

Mindfulness Must Be Engaged

Thich Nhat Hanh wrote in his book, Peace is Every Step, that mindfulness must be engaged.

He wrote about how when living in Vietnam during the war that he and the other monks living at the monastery had to decide if they stayed practicing in the monasteries or leave to go help the people that were suffering. 

They decided to do both.  They went out to help people, and did so with mindfulness.

He called it engaged Buddhism.  Meaning that mindfulness must be engaged, one must be present in the moment to see and act compassionately.

Thich Nhat Hanh writes that "we must be aware of the real problems of the world. Then, with mindfulness, we will know what to do and what not to do to be of help."

Begin by "maintaining awareness in breathing and practice smiling, even in difficult situations."
Then people, animals and plants will benefit.

He ends with asking, "Are you massaging our Mother Earth every time your foot touches her?  Are you planting seeds of joy and peace? "

Peace is Every Step

"Shall we continue our journey?"
With love and gratitude for Thich Nhat Hanh,
Pamela Nelson

Monday, November 10, 2014

Bringing Yoga to Life - Donna Farhi

Bringing Yoga to Life - The Everyday Practice of Enlightened Living
By Donna Farhi

Donna Farhi has been practicing yoga for over 35 years, teaching all over the world and has not only written many books but has also been an asana columnist for Yoga Journal and Yoga International.

Bringing Yoga to Life is divided into three parts gently helping to explain the importance of yoga and a daily practice on and off the mat.  Donna writes that "the greater purpose of a formal yoga practice, however, is to apply the acute attentiveness we learn on the mat to all aspects of our everyday life so that this unitive awareness filters through our relationships, our work, and our play.

This book does not describe yoga poses and how to do them, but helps one explore their true motivation for practicing yoga.  Donna explains "in finding this true motivation, you open the way toward clarifying your intention so that you can use the life you have been given joyfully and for the benefit of others.  More important, you will be able to recognize if you are using your yoga practice to look at your life or escape from it." 
I found this statement very profound because I know I have used my yoga practice both ways and just getting on the mat has been a struggle at times. Finding clear intention is the key.

But as Donna is able to write so eloquently that "the point of practicing asanas is to become sensitive, attuned, and adaptable." and not to just practice advanced poses, but advanced practice which brings us closer to recognizing our true self.

A great book to inspire one to continue on the yogic path.  I hope you will find out for yourself too. :)

Here is a link to Donna's website and other books and information that might interest you.
Pamela Nelson

Friday, November 7, 2014

Schedule UPdate

Yoga Schedule UPdate:

New Saturday Session starts November 8th!
9:15-10:15am - Iyengar Flow
10:30-11:45 am - AM All Levels

Still a few spots left and time to register!

No scheduled classes week of November 10th to14th except for Wednesday November 12th noon class.

Noon Thursday class November 20th, 27th and December 4th - 12:05-12:55pm
Contact me to register.

Winter schedule will be out soon!  If you are a group looking for a yoga class in the upcoming year or for a special event please contact me for availability.

Pamela Nelson - Certified Iyengar Yoga Instructor

Certification Mark