When you are learning new yoga poses, it might be very easy to become cocky about it. After all, you are able to bend your body in ways that none of your friends ever could, and this feels great. Let me just note that it is perfectly acceptable and even normal that it feels great. In fact, it is good to have pride in your body’s strength and ability. Yoga should make you feel graceful and powerful. However, it starts to become an issue when your ego becomes larger than your desire to improve yourself.  Yoga is all about bettering yourself, becoming more at peace with your body and your mind. So when it suddenly becomes all about being able to show off to your friends and family, you lose sight of that. It starts becoming more of a game instead of something serious. Is it bad to want to improve your practice? Absolutely not! However, if you are only doing so to feel better about yourself, it defeats the purpose. Another side to this is if your sense of self becomes so inflated you think that you don’t need to or simply cannot improve anymore. This is also unhealthy, because it gives the unrealistic idea of perfection. Even the best yogi in the world could probably do things to improve his or her practice. So, enjoy yoga and feel joy in your body’s abilities, but don’t let it all go to your head.

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Yoga is fantastic for your body and mind overall, but some of you may have specific goals in mind. Here are some poses that might just help you will some of these goals!

For upper body strength: There are quite a few poses that build strength in your arms. Some of the simpler ones are downward facing dog,  plank, and chaturanga.  Plank is especially a great arm strengthener because there are many different variations of it. Plus, when you combine plank and chaturanga together it becomes a pushup! If you are feeling more advanced, crow pose is a great arm strengthener as well. This pushes you more though because it also requires you to balance!

For lower body strength: Most people probably underestimate what yoga can do for their lower body strength. While it is not likely to build visible muscle, it can absolutely make you stronger. Poses for lower body strength include warrior one and 2, chair pose,  and eagle pose. The two warrior poses are probably the easiest of the bunch, so if you are just starting out try these, and be gentle still. Chair pose when done properly should cause a mild burning in your thighs. Remember it should never, ever be excruciating pain, you should just be able to feel your muscles working.  Eagle pose, like crow pose, is a bit more advanced as it requires you to find a good center of balance.

For balance: Balance is one of the most important elements in yoga, but finding balance can help you outside of your practice as well. Some poses to help you increase your balance are half moon, balancing butterfly, bow (0r dancer),  side plank,  and headstand.  Balancing butterfly is the easiest of these poses, but remember most of them also have modifications. If you can not do a side plank or headstand on your first try, don’t give up! Just keep practicing, and eventually your balance will be right where it needs to be to accomplish the pose.

Hopefully, some of these poses will help you accomplish what your body needs. Remember, yoga as a whole focuses on strength, flexibility, and balance, and there are many more poses out there to help with all of those things.

This epaper is like a mini-magazine for yoga lovers. See here some great yoga teachers, foods, and inspiring places. In this issue you will meet Meredith, a college senior who loves teaching and doing yoga. You’ll get tips on how to eat properly healthy foods to help you feel better and stronger in your yoga practice. You will see some absolutely stunning pictures of yogis doing beautiful poses in beautiful places. Plus, one empty mat where you can hopefully envision yourself! You will also learn about one of the most well known yoga teachers out there. He has helped to make yoga into something for everyone. Isn’t that wonderful? Hopefully this makes you feel blessed and welcome in the yoga world. Go ahead and open up this fun little e-magazine, and see if you like it! I hope it teaches you and inspires you about yoga!

It is a dream of mine that this is the only yoga site you will ever need. However, I know that is unrealistic. There are so many great yoga sites out there, and if this one does not have what you need, one of them is bound to. Here are a few sites and what they are all about!

1. Yoga Journal– Yoga journal is a fantastic and free site, one of my personal favorites. It includes access to free yoga videos, blogs, lifestyle and health advice, and insights. There is no requirement to sign up, but you can sign up for the newsletters and live mag. This site is great if you don’t have access to a class or don’t have the money to go.

2.My Yoga Online– This is the number one yoga website in the world, but slightly less accessible than yoga journal. A membership is required, and to get full access you have to pay. However, if you are serious about yoga it could very well be worth it. This site hosts videos by some of the best yoga teachers.  It also includes workshops and a community for yoga lovers, among many other features.

3. Mindbodygreen– The goal of the site is right in the title. It focuses on the mind, the body, and more natural , or green, health remedies.  The videos on this site focus more on learning about yoga rather than learning yoga. There are many articles about how yoga can strengthen the mind and the body. There are also natural  remedies, which is a neat bonus!

4. YogaDork –  This is more of a light- hearted site for yoga. It still takes yoga seriously of course, but in a fun way. Here you can read about celebrities that love yoga, or a six year old who wrote about how yoga makes his day. If you need a smile, or just want to be reminded how great yoga really is, this is the site for you.

Hopefully one of this sites will suit you, but if not don’t be discouraged! There are plenty more out there to be discovered.

If you are zealous about yoga, you might spend some time trying to convince people to try it. Some people will seem eager, and want to try it out in a heartbeat. However, others will be much less eager than that. People might be convinced it’s too easy, that it won’t help them in anyway, or that they are not flexible enough. So, here are a couple of ways that will help convince reluctant, closet yogis to hop on the yoga train.

1. Tell them that yoga classes are a welcoming community, and invite them to come along sometime to a class. Most yoga teachers are very open. They are very willing to offer support and advice.

2. Ensure them that yoga will provide the right amount of challenge for them. Perhaps show them some videos of various types of yoga. This way they are able to see what might work for them.

3. Give them examples of athletes who have benefited from yoga. This might especially work for men who fear that yoga is only for women. If they are able to see  athletes they admire doing yoga, it could convince them.

4. Remind them that it takes very little equipment. If they have comfortable clothes, they are set. Yes, a mat is also needed, but some studios will provide them and for home practice it’s also okay to use carpeted spaces.

5. Explain to them the benefits. Some benefits in yoga are less talked about. Many people are aware of it improving flexibility and relieving stress. However, benefits like an improved sex life and increase in confidence are not always known.

After all this, remember not to lose patience. It may take more than one try to convince someone to try yoga. If after everything they are unconvinced, just let it go. Yoga is not for everyone, and that’s okay.

A WKU yoga instructor demonstrates sun salutations, plus a few random clips from the class she taught that same day. These clips include poses that challenge flexibility, as well as a brief cool down.

Yoga does not require much, neither the clothing or equipment is anything fancy. There are just a few simple pieces of equipment and also very simple attire.    If you are planning to be fully dedicated and very serious about your practice, these are all the things you should invest in.

1. Foam blocks– These are great for beginners who need more support, or just for anyone reaching for a more challenging pose who is not quite there yet. For instance, crow pose is often easier to start out on a block, because you are elevated.  The blocks should be able to support your weight without collapsing.

2. Sticky mat– This is more commonly called a yoga mat. It is simply the mat you use for your yoga routine. Make sure it is on a flat, even surface so that it does not slide around too much.

3. Yoga strap–  This helps to extend your flexibility beyond what your body itself can do. It is great for when you are not yet able to stretch to a certain extent. It also helps with the alignment of your spine.

4. Proper attire– Yoga clothing is very simple. Just make sure that your clothes allow you to move freely, that’s all there is to it. Also make sure that they offer enough support, especially when it comes to a proper bra for women.

Doesn’t seem so tough, does it? Nope! So, gather your equipment and go conquer the yoga world!