Two Insights about Yoga Practice for Western Medical & Fitness Professionals

This is a guest blog post from the Founder of Yoga Hub - Ali Singer. I had the pleasure of meeting Ali, picking her brain about yoga, and I also had the privilege of having her coach me through an hour session which was absolutely incredible. 

So I asked Ali "If there were two insights that you could provide western medical & fitness professional about traditional yoga what would it be?"
Ali's answer had me see yoga with a different set of eyes and because of that I had to share it by turning it into a guest post:
  1. "Yoga is great for every body, but not all yoga is great for every body: students must find a teacher and style who resonates with their personal goals and physical condition. For example, many doctors recommend that women try yoga when they’re pregnant, but if a woman who has never practiced yoga before tries it for the first time when she’s pregnant, she’s at the risk of over stretching and injuring herself due to an abundance of relaxin (a hormone released during pregnancy which causes ligaments to stretch easier) and not being familiar with her natural boundaries. It’s essential that students take their time to find the right teacher and class type in order to have a safe and long-term practice.
     
  2. More than just sets of exercises and poses, yoga is a state of mind- this is what differentiates yoga from other activities, and also what could make any other activity “yoga”. For example, if someone is doing PT exercises without their full attention, they are likely to be holding their breath, which creates and indicates stress, and counteracts much of the benefits of doing the exercises in the first place. The breath is a metric for one’s state of mind: steady breath equals a steady mind. With a steady/focused mind, one is able to achieve optimal results. In this way, yoga enables practitioners to take an active role in their own healing: By harnessing the power of their full consciousness, yogis direct energy to where it needs to go in order to restore the body’s natural state of balance and harmony."

If you're in the Boston area I would highly recommend connecting with Ali to experience how she coaches yoga.  

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Ali Singer - Founder and CEO of Yoga Hub Boston, Ali is ranked as Massachusetts’ number one yoga coach on Coachup.com. She aims to make yoga accessible for all people, and teaches in a variety of Boston locations such as the Boston Public Library, Museum of Science, Prudential Tower, Rose Kennedy Greenway, and hotels like the Hyatt, Westin, and Fairmont Copley. Her group classes emphasize the facets which brought her to yoga: fitness and fun. Ali draws upon her background in synchronized skating and salsa dance to provide detailed and rhythmic instruction, which she pairs with unexpected playlists. Her mission, through teaching and growing her business, is to cultivate happiness, and empower students to accomplish their goals. To learn more about Ali, please visit www.alisingeryoga.com.

Ramez Antoun