Friday, April 19, 2013

The bendy brilliance attained by practicing yoga regularly has become a treasure sought after by many Americans. Hindu monks brought the 5,000-year-old practice to the West in the late 19th century, and by the mid-1980s, yoga was heralded as a way to cultivate strength, mindfulness and calm. And as yoga has gained popularity, newfangled ways of practicing have emerged.
Love the ocean? Had a few too many Appletinis last night? Want to be surrounded by "bro" energy? There's a yoga class for you.
It seems only natural that people who practice yoga will combine it with other interests.
"Yoga is constantly evolving," said Kaitlin Quistgaard, editor in chief of Yoga Journal. "Variety gives people an opportunity to approach yoga from different perspectives."
Here's a look at a few bends and twists from traditional yoga.
Hip-hop yoga
Want to hold side crow to some classic Notorious B.I.G.? At YogaHop, with studios in Santa Monica and Pasadena, you can do just that.
Blaring hip-hop, rock and pop music combine with a high-energy vinyasa flow practice. With a lightning bolt as its logo and brightly colored walls and TV screens, the studio is not what one might imagine as the neighborhood yoga class.
Nevertheless, co-owner Matthew Reyes, 44, has practiced yoga for 15 years, but he has taught spinning to booming pump-it-up music. He began to wonder, "How can I make a class so efficient that it has an element of all of these things?"
Six years ago, Reyes founded YogaHop, a practice that combines traditional poses, mainstream music and an intense workout.
Dian Evans, a family nurse practitioner and clinical assistant professor at Emory School of Medicine's School of Nursingwho has studied the influence of yoga on chronic back pain, wondered about the collision of hip-hop and yoga.
"It's fun to move your breath with sound, but I don't know how you can be doing yoga to hip-hop music and breathe in a controlled fashion," Evans said.
But Reyes countered that the end goal for all types of yoga is the same. "Yoga is a big tree with many branches. All the branches have something to offer. Our yoga and a traditional type of yoga all get to the same finish line; we just get there in a dynamic and fun way."
Paddle board yoga
Stand-up paddle boarding has grown exponentially popular in recent years. So why not try some yoga while balancing on a paddle board? That was Sarah Tiefenthaler's logic after taking her yoga-teaching course in Costa Rica and getting introduced to paddle boarding soon after her certification.
"I took the board out every week, and I just started putting together sequences while on the board," said Tiefenthaler, 30, of Los Angeles.
YOGAqua was soon born.
Tiefenthaler said the practice starts off slow, and the class is always held in calm waters. Students have about half an hour to get acquainted with the water and their board, and then their boards are anchored, so there is no worry that they will float away during the class. People shouldn't hesitate to try the class if they've never been on the board, she said. They'll catch on.
The practice works the core muscles even more than a typical practice because of the need to balance and stabilize, said Tiefenthaler.

Friday, April 5, 2013

How To Prevent Jet Lag

I always wondered what would help prevent jet lag. I thought that if you will be arriving at your destination at night then you shouldn't sleep on the plane, but a 15-hour flight becomes very exhausting. I never thought that sunlight could be used to help prevent jet lag. This is an interesting article to take a look at when you are about to embark on a long journey to another time zone.

By Diderique Konig
Tue, Dec 11, 2012

Flying on an airplane can be an exciting experience. The thrill of seeing family, friends, or a new place causes millions of people to book flights each year.
Whether you are going near or far, chances are that you have suffered from jet lag as a result of flying.
Jet lag, which is a result of crossing multiple time zones rapidly, causes the circadian rhythm (internal body clock) to be thrown off.
The Mayo Clinic says, “jet lag can cause daytime fatigue, an unwell feeling, difficulty staying alert and gastrointestinal problems.”
It usually lasts about two days, depending on the number of time zones crossed, but there are several treatments available.
No medicine has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat jet lag, but natural remedies are plentiful.
The easiest treatment is not only free, but also natural.
This powerful tool can put you back on track faster then any medicine.
Products containing lavender may also help with sleep.
Various sources have created online jet lag calculators, which can help optimize your sleep schedule by taking the sun into account.
British Airways, together with Dr. Chris Idzikowski from the United Kingdom, has created a widely used jet lag calculator.
Melatonin supplements can also be used to help aid sleep, since melatonin creates feelings of sleepiness. These are taken right before going to sleep so that they can help induce sleep.
MSNBC published an article on the topic in which they suggest using caffeine. This can be effective for alertness or as a booster when one is starting to feel tired in the middle of the day. However, caffeine needs to be consumed at least six hours before going to sleep, since it may cause sleeplessness in some people.
They mentioned an interview with Andrew Watterson, a management consultant based in Dallas, saying that "he plans his day accordingly, making sure not to schedule any important appointments around 3 p.m. Instead, he takes a coffee break."
Another mistake many people make is that they do not sleep on the plane, which aggravates the symptoms of jet lag, because you are depriving yourself of sleep.
Even though jet lag is experienced by people in a variety of ways, the key to conquering it seems to be knowing your own body.