Be Engaged Throughout Your Class

Last week, we introduced Sunstone’s vision as well as the Five Teaching Principles that guide our teachers in helping our students cultivate their very best selves. These principles  are our core values, the foundation on which we’ve built our studios.

They are equally valuable for you, our students. They create the landscape for what your experience with us can be like. Whether you’re in your second class, or well on your way to building a body, mind, and life practice, these words describe behaviors that can turn what seems to be the simple action of taking a yoga class into something truly life-changing.

This week, we focus on Being Engaged  –mentally and physically–#1 in importance for students.

  1. Being engaged means, first and foremost, being present in your practice.  This frequently is our most challenging task in the yoga room. It easy to assume that a particular posture is your Kryptonite, but more often than not, it’s thoughts of the outside world (i.e. office, kids, finances) that can throw you off.  Watch yourself wobble in Eagle the moment your mind drifts to that phone call from earlier today…To be fully present is to commit to what is happening right now within your body, within the space of the yoga room, to quiet the outside noise and focus just on you. This is how you will become receptive to learn the lessons yoga teaches you about yourself.  

How do you create this space within yourself? Set an intention at the beginning of class to stay present in your practice.  Focus on your own eyes in the front mirror and resist the urge to watch others.  If your mind suddenly starts trying to problem-solve, bring attention to your breathing.  This will help bring you back to the present moment.

  1. Actively listen to what your teachers say during class. It’s another way of staying engaged.  Yes, you are hearing the teacher’s words and instructions, but are you listening? What do the words really mean?

Trying to process and follow their instructions, even if it takes you out of your comfort zone, will keep you engaged and present in your practice.  There’s a good chance you’ll “hear” something for the first time and that something might turn on a light bulb for you.

Also, take care that you are staying with your teacher’s instructions.  Especially as we become familiar and comfortable with the sequence of postures, we may go on auto-pilot and enter or exit postures before the teacher has prompted to do so.  Check in with yourself and make sure you are focusing on the instructions and staying with the group.

  1. Now that you are mentally engaged, ask yourself whether you are truly physically engaged.  We want to avoid just hanging out in postures and going through the motions. Consistently checking in from your heels to your head. Start with your strong foundation (even the toes are active!), contract your quads, abs and glutes, lift your rib cage up. *whew* Not only will it keep you focused on the present (at a bare minimum that list in and of itself will get you half way through your hold time) but you’ll feel stronger in postures with that set up.

Each posture and class is an opportunity for you learning and growth in and out of the yoga room.  Make your postures dynamic, entering them with purpose without comparison to other. Find a deeper awareness by connecting your breath to the movement, allowing it to enhance your focus throughout the entire hold time.  For example, in Half Moon, don’t just press the hips over to where you usually go and stay there the entire time.  Explore whether you can lengthen and stretch deeper with each breath.

  1. Engage your practice outside of the yoga room.  Ask questions before or after class. Maybe you want help with a particular posture, you’re wondering about an article you read or want to know more about a particular Series.  This is a great opportunity to engage with your instructor and continue building your practice.

Start to notice how what you do outside of the yoga room affects what happens inside. Everything from how much sleep you got, the water (or other beverages) you chose to drink, what you ate yesterday, to that annoying email you haven’t responded to yet can change your experience for better or worse.

Become part of our community – learn your teacher’s name or *gasp* even another student’s, participate on our Facebook page by tagging us @sunstoneyoga or posting a pic to our wall, respond to a forum thread after you register on our website. Maybe you can take time beyond your usual routine to attend a weekend workshop.

  1. Finally, be open to receiving and giving feedback. Feedback gives us a new perspective outside of ourselves. It is how we can grow and become our very best self. An easy, anonymous way to give us feedback is to take a few seconds after each class to complete our new 30-second survey.  Your teachers want you to have the best experience possible in class, and you as our students are the only ones who can give us that consistent feedback.  Let us hear from you!
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Our Five Teaching Principles

At Sunstone Yoga, our vision is to become one of the world’s most influential fitness associations who transforms the very idea of fitness from isolated physical activity into an integrated body, mind and life practice.

In order to work towards this we need

  1. Students. :)
  2. A solid team of teachers who believe in our vision and embody our values.

We want our students to know how committed we as instructors are to their experience, to creating change, to helping them cultivate their very best self. This is our mantra. This is what sets us apart.

Be Consistent - Our first principle is consistency. Fostering this within ourselves and demonstrating it during class helps our students avoid self-doubt as they develop their own consistent yoga practice. Consistency is also part of the respect and encouragement we extend to each other as a team.

Be Observant - Without sacrificing consistency, we must respond to what we observe. Being a good teacher is not about saying more but about seeing more –this helps us refine the subtleties of our teaching skills. Careful observation enables us to consistently deliver dynamic instruction to our students.

Be Kind and Grateful - Our first acts of kindness are to be consistent and observant. Our students have busy lives, and they make a special effort to prioritize attending our classes. They have earned our kindness during our time with them, and we are grateful for their loyalty.

Be Engaged - To be mindfully engaged with our students is the culmination of all of our principles, and the key to endless possibility. A teacher without students is not a teacher. When we realize this, there is no room for conflict–it is replaced with a shared energy and passion. Engagement ultimately empowers us to lead classes that are the highlights of our students’ lives during our shared quest for excellence.

 

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How to Be a Good Student

Dear Student,

It is an honor and privilege to guide you through your practice each day you’re in my class. Teachers do not exist without students. It is through you that I am able to refine my craft.  My hope is that every time you leave the studio you feel fulfilled, in a different mindset than you entered and empowered with more knowledge about yourself and your practice.

I’m writing this letter as a guide to help you be the best student you can be so that you will get the most out of your time in the hot room.  I know that, when I began practicing hot yoga, I wanted to be the “best” student (I’m competitive–I admit it) and, in my view, the “best” students were the ones who could do the entire class, full expression of every posture, without even drinking water, and (it seemed to me then) more.  I now realize that none of those attributes got them better results or more benefits and that, by trying to emulate them, I wasn’t listening to my teacher or growing my practice.  So how can you be a good student?

Be open.  A good student is open to learning, to trying things differently, to seeing a new perspective and to every teacher they encounter.  You chose to walk into the studio and take class with a group, from a teacher, so I assume that you want to be part of a community, learning from a live teacher instead of at home, following a DVD, running your own program.  My hope is that you are arrive like an empty vessel, ready to receive whatever this class today offers you.

Being truly open means that you are also willing to un-learn what you think you know about yoga (how Tree pose looks, for example) and try it the way it is being taught to you here and now.  Try not to get attached to a certain teacher or dismiss a new teacher because you’ve been practicing longer than they have been teaching.  We want you to be committed to your practice, not an individual. Every teacher has something to teach you, if you let them.  (This is one of the reasons Sunstone Yoga doesn’t publish its teaching roster.)

Being open also means that you have released your preconceptions of what you can and cannot do physically and are ready to explore what your body can do today.  I promise that I never want you to feel pain in a posture, so if I ask you to do something, please listen carefully to my words and then execute to the best of your ability. I will understand if you don’t look like your 20-year old neighbor. If you want to discuss my cues or your decisions, we can chat after class.

Be courteous.  A good student realizes they are part of a learning community and wants their fellow students to enjoy their experience as well.  In any class, large or small, the group’s attitude can have a major impact on your experience.  To that end, be aware that your actions (and frustrations) affect everyone.  Arrive before the posted class time and stay in the hot room for the entire class. Entering class late or leaving before class is over is disruptive and disrespectful to others who like you, have taken time out of their busy day to attend.

During class, focus on yourself in the mirror, be as still as possible between postures, concentrate on your breathing. Stay home if you are sick or if allergies affect you to the point that you would disturb other students (scattering tissues next to your mat is sharing germs, not sharing your love of yoga).  Child’s Pose and Savasana are always appropriate. If you’re feeling dizzy, over-worked or a little emotional, just go into one of them.

Be yourself.  Being a good student has nothing to do with how you look while practicing or to what extent you can do every posture.  It has to do with your attitude: how open you are to learning each time you enter class and how kind and grateful you are to those around you and ultimately yourself.  As your practice develops, over time you will also become your own teacher, increasing your awareness and self-love, and learning to surrender to things outside of your control.  It is our hope that the classes we offer at Sunstone Yoga provide an environment where you can connect with and cultivate your very best self.

Happy Learning!

Namaste,

Your Teacher

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Preventing Injury: Accept Your Body

“Set your intention before you begin, and accept where your body is in your practice today.”  If you regularly attend Sunstone Yoga, you know we consistently tell you to listen to your body and honor it.  Do you truly hear those words . . . and do you listen? Accepting where your body is each day–whether you are attending a Fire class, walking up stairs, or just bringing in the groceries –is key to preventing injury.

Start by becoming aware of how you are feeling at any given time.  Maybe you’re tired from a late night, or sore from the Wood class you took yesterday … maybe you’re recuperating from an injury or coming back to your practice after some time off… or maybe you’re feeling strong, hydrated, and ready to go! Become mindful of how these feelings change even throughout the same class.

Now listen carefully to your teacher’s words. They are precisely chosen.  Instructors at Sunstone Yoga are trained to help you find your alignment in each posture and to get you into and out of postures safely.  We focus on strength before flexibility, keeping our muscles engaged throughout a posture. A great example is learning to create a strong standing leg – crucial to preventing injury.

Enter your practice mindfully. Whether you are feeling 100% or recovering from a surgery, notice what happens with each movement and make adjustments accordingly. This may entail standing quietly in Mountain pose, lying in Savasana, or kneeling in Child’s Pose during postures you are not ready to do yet.  Give yourself permission to not go “all the way” into postures as you build strength in order to maintain alignment.

Allow yourself to develop your practice over time. Your teachers want to challenge you, but you choose how to act on their encouragement. Become more aware and do only what your body is able to do in this moment. Even if you could kick out in Standing Forehead to Knee yesterday, your hamstrings may be tight today. Be okay with this. Judgement and negative self-talk can often lead us to make decisions we later regret.

When we are attuned to our bodies’ limits and accepting of them, we create healthy, self-imposed boundaries and expectations that later allow us to grow. We are less likely to over extend ourselves just because we feel we “should” or because the person next to us has a different range of motion and more likely to correctly assess the right moment to advance our practice and embrace our potential.

1. Accept where your body is in your practice today.
2. Stay engaged. Listen to the words and follow the cues.
3. Check in with yourself throughout class to assess how you’re feeling.

——————————————————————————————-
Feeling lost in your postures?  Maybe it’s time for you to try a workshop.  Throughout the year, you have the opportunity to practice with Sunstone teachers as they re-certify to teach Fire, Wood, Earth, and Metal — and as a participant you’ll get tons of hands-on adjustments and guidance from not just our teachers but our Series Masters (the instructors charged with teaching your own teachers)!

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Workshops and Yoga

What is it about workshops and yoga? Every yoga-centric magazine you open contains pages upon pages of ads for yoga workshops and retreats enticing you to practice with X guru in Y exotic location, attend a quick weekend “detox,” expand your horizons at a R & R retreat, and so on.  Each one sounds better than the last, so how do you choose among them … or are you even ready?

Whether you’re a regular workshop attendee or just wondering whether attending one is right for you, there are several key questions to ask yourself:

Why do you think you want to attend a workshop? Is it just to be able to say you went (“I went to California and practiced Standing Bow on the Pacific Coast”)?  If so, maybe you should just take a trip. Do you want to deepen your yoga practice?  To better understand the alignment and goals of the postures you practice regularly?  To meet like-minded yogis and do some intense practicing?   Perhaps you’re looking for ways to take your practice off the mat — going beyond the physical asana practice and expanding your definition of “yoga” by building your life/mind practice as well.  These are all excellent reasons to attend a workshop, be it for 3 days or 3 hours.

Which workshop is right for you? There is a workshop for anything you could imagine: physical practice, mental concentration, nutrition, music, and even dancing. But what will give you the most value? Do you want to attend a workshop that touches on many topics, or is a more focused weekend for you?

Reflect on your goals for your own practice.  Put aside what the Joneses are doing and ask yourself what you want to learn or better understand – what could your next level look like?  Do you feel comfortable with the physical Fire postures but want to learn more about mindful breathing?  Or maybe you’re feeling distracted in class and always finding yourself jumping ahead — not being present in your practice?  Signing up for a still mind practices workshop will benefit not only your asanas but the rest of your life.

How will you get the most out of your workshop? Before the workshop, clear your calendar for the duration of the workshop. You have chosen to dedicate this time to furthering and deepening your practice. Perhaps you ask your spouse to shuttle the kids to their soccer games and piano lessons.  Give yourself room to truly embrace the experience.  Journal about what you want to learn, then open yourself to the workshop. Coming in “Learner” mindset will allow you to embrace new feelings and experiences you hadn’t expected.

While you’re at your workshop, focus on yourself and what you’re learning.  For some of us, this may mean taking steps to remove distractions like no cell phones (!) during breaks or no checking in on Facebook.  You have paid both money and time to deepen your practice.  Be present.  Take time at the end of each day or throughout the day to journal about what you are feeling.

What happens after the workshop? Depending on how long you were at your workshop, you may feel a little jolted coming back to reality.  (The longer and more intense the workshop, the harder the reentry into the day-to-day grind may be.)  Take time to reflect on what you learned and what you’re wanting to learn next.  Reflecting on the notes and journaling you did while in the workshop will help re-ground you.  Also, if you collected contact information from your fellow workshop students and teachers, stay in touch with them.  Perhaps you even met someone who could be your accountability partner for daily still mind practices or food journaling.  Continue your growth and self-education.  You learned lots at your workshop — don’t just drop it and return to the same old same old.

Expensive excursions to Costa Rica do not guarantee great results – it’s the content combined with your own efforts that matter. Start by checking out experiences at your own studio, or something local, that will complement your existing practice. (For the past few weeks, Sunstone Yoga has been offering special classes for its Signature members.  These classes are a great preview of the kind of experience you would get at some of our  Continuing Education workshops.)

And if you’re not quite ready to do the “workshop thing” yet, consider taking the time to simply talk to your teachers after class. Ask them to recommend some next steps for your practice – be that a workshop or just a tweak in the yogaroom.  They can provide guidance attuned to your goals and practice.

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Be an Accountability Partner

Ac·count·abil·i·ty Part·ner \ə-ˌkau̇n-tə-ˈbi-lə-tē  ˈpärt-nər\

One who as an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility for the actions of another with whom they are associated.

Yes, Accountability Partners are different from your run-of-the-mill yoga “buddy.” We’ve talked about why you should have one and where you can find one, but what if you want to BE one?

There’s really one critical detail – that you are accepting responsibility for not only your actions, but your partner’s as well. However, if you want to be a successful accountability partner, the following tips should help:

Set some guidelines early.

    • Understand what your partner is working towards. (You don’t both need to have the same specific goals to be accountable to one another.)
    • Will you attend class together?
    • How frequently will you check in?

Baby steps: Don’t let yourselves get in over your head(s).

    • Remember the tortoise and the hare? Set small, achievable goals and work towards them. They’ll keep you both motivated.

Encouragement

    • Acknowledge your accomplishments! We make progress not just in our physical advancement, but in our attitude, our stress levels and mental focus.
    • Give your partner the extra nudge when they need it
    • Keep your collective momentum high

Empathize with them.

    • Sometimes, it’s tough to stay committed to the original plan.
    • Acknowledge your own struggles and frustrations.

Ask the hard questions.

          • Yup, this is part of your job too. Sometimes you just have to do it. “So why didn’t you make it to class at all this week?”
So, in summary:

1) See your destination ahead of you.

2) Set your path.

3) Find a travelling companion.

4) Focus on the journey.

 

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Designated Manager Recognition

Have you ever thought about what or who really makes Sunstone’s studios run? Designated Managers (DMs), an integral part of the studio life force, a center point that gives energy while keeping things on track. We couldn’t do it without them!

Nicole started practicing hot yoga with Sunstone in 2007 when she was working as an accountant in downtown Dallas, living in Murphy, and commuting on the train every day. Her co-workers did hot yoga and were constantly talking about this amazing experience. She searched on the internet to find a hot yoga studio near her and started practicing at Sunstone’s Preston Towne Crossing studio in Plano.

She soon entered into the Sunstone Yoga Academy with the intent to one day open her own Sunstone Yoga Franchise. Nicole started teaching part-time while continuing her accounting career for several more years. Eventually, tired of the corporate world, she made the decision to teach full-time in early 2011 when she joined the Rockwall Village studio team as Lead Yoga Advisor. When Skillman Live Oak had an opening for Designated Manager later in 2011, she moved to take the position, starting around the same time the studio rolled out its new membership options – talk about a lot of change!

Being a successful DM requires dedication, attention to detail, and love (for our students, teachers, and Sunstone Yoga in general). They teach, manage, organize, and try not to let themselves get too run down. Despite these challenges, Nicole loves her job, and wakes up excited to come in to work. She also loves that she now has the opportunity to use her business skills while sharing her love of yoga with her students. She says she “look[s] for any opportunity to connect with [her] students” and is very aware of how her actions in her position reflect directly on Sunstone Yoga. Nicole wrote the following to the studio owners and team:

Thank you. I came to you wanting to join your business in sharing yoga love with our community.  Through this, you have given me opportunity which I never thought was possible, but your belief in me has pushed me forward into what has become the best change I have made in my life.  Thank you for your encouragement and what you saw that I had in me to bring to fruition.
 
To my Team- Welcoming me with open arms has been the best gift I have ever received.  As a naturally shy person, every one of you has built me to be the teacher and manager I have come to be. I continue to build upon what you bring in my life~ energy, positivity, and love for all that is around me. Please know that every success in our studio is because of you.
 
-Nicole

Nicole finds that organizing and managing her time is the most challenging aspect of her new position — not to mention trying to balance her team’s needs, and maintaining team morale: “I love that things are always changing, they never get stale. There is always some new promotion, or thing to get excited about.”

Since leaving the corporate world, Nicole finds that she is a much happier person all around. Her boyfriend, Jeff, loves how her life and attitude have transformed since she fully committed to teaching.  Nicole and Jeff grew up in Garland, and both of their families still live there. Jeff is a graphic designer and bartender. Nicole and Jeff live with their two furry rescue “children” – two Terrier mixes named Jezebel and Sarian. 

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How to Choose an Accountability Partner

Last week, we introduced the concept of using an Accountability Partner to keep yourself on track to reaching your health and fitness resolutions.

Once you have decided you need an accountability partner to help establish your regular hot yoga practice, how do you choose one? Sometimes, the solution is easy or it seems like the selection is made for you—your girlfriends that you signed up with, your roommate, your partner, etc. But whomever you select—make sure that they are someone who is not going to let you slip through the cracks easily. They are committed to seeing you achieve your very best self and are not going to settle for excuses…and they expect the same from you. You have to be willing to return the favor!

Want to see what it feels like or try out a potential “candidate”? If you are a Signature member, you are always able to bring a guest with you. Bring your spouse, your co-worker or your dad—whomever! Recruit them! See what that other person in your life thinks about Sunstone Yoga – you may have a new partner in fitness! Anyone new to Sunstone Yoga is eligible for our 10 days for $10 program, so Premier and Choice members can introduce friends to hot yoga via this inexpensive option.

A great place for Signature members to meet like-minded individuals is at one of our free Special Classes. (Check in our studios for the schedule of upcoming Special Classes.)  Do you know everyone at your studio? This is a great time to find someone who is also looking for a little extra motivation to stay in their practice. Each Special Class will be preceded by a Meet and Greet as well as refreshments afterwards.

Once you have an accountability partner, make sure you explicitly define what you’re committing to, what you hope to accomplish—3 days a week for a month, Metal class every Friday for 3 months, or even a 60-day challenge. You don’t necessarily have to attend class together! However, knowing up front what you really want will help keep you on track as time passes and your motivation possibly ebbs.

Set up a system for checking in with your partner—that way if you have to make last minute plans, you can update your partner: “Baby sick, can’t make the 6 a.m. … Will sneak in the 5:15 Fire.” It also provides an outlet for your partner to hold you accountable: “Earth class was great! Sorry that you missed it. When are you planning to make up?” You can also check in with your partner to share successes and defeats. Two pounds lighter on the scale? Text your buddy. (For groups, check out the texting service at www.groupme.com.) Battling the siren call of the cupcakes in the break room? Send an email.

Don’t be afraid to push back on your partner, too. You are in this relationship for mutual gain. If you find your partner slacking—let them know so that they feel comfortable enough to tell you when you aren’t holding up your end of the bargain. Remember, this isn’t your “yoga buddy.” This is not someone who you just exercise with—they are someone with whom you share your practice. These are people tied into and dependent upon your success. They are just as interested in seeing you achieve your goals as they are in achieving their own goals.

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Accountability Partners: Not just “yoga buddies”

Here we are, seven weeks into 2012 … perhaps you started out strong on your New Year’s resolutions to eat healthier, lose ten pounds, or take five hot yoga classes a week. Oftentimes we make resolutions with great ambition in the moment, but we tend to lose perspective (and the eagerness to follow through) as time passes — sleep right now sounds so much better than getting out of bed to take a 6 a.m. Fire class.

Photos courtesy of Britt Bailey

Health and fitness resolutions tend to take the backseat as the year progresses. One way to motivate yourself to stick with your goals is to bind your success with someone else’s—an Accountability Partner.

We all need a little nudge at times to help achieve our goals. How we get that nudge can be uplifting, spurring us on to victory, or it can make us feel defeated. For example, if you beat yourself up when the number on the scale hasn’t changed or you didn’t make it to class two days in a row, you may want to give up. How much better would it feel if that “nudge” came in the form of an uplifting text, a commiserating smile from across the hot room, or just seeing your friend zombie-walk through the door at 5:59 a.m.?

An Accountability Partner is there to support you – to encourage you when you make progress and to get you back on the path when you stumble. People hire Personal Trainers all the time to push them and advise them on how to achieve their goals. PTs are generally liked for their expertise and charisma. And they provide accountability because, Hey—you’re paying them, so you might as well use them, right? Like a PT, an Accountability Partner will push you to follow through and provide new perspective when you’re struggling to reach another milestone. But Accountability Partnerships are even deeper than PT/client relationships because the encouragement is not unilateral; rather, you are both working to achieve a common goal. They are just as committed to your success as you are theirs.

It’s no big deal if we let ourselves down (“I can work out tomorrow”). But if our absence from class is going to disappoint someone else, then we are less likely to “flake” and fall through on our commitment (“Sue told me she is counting on me to show up—I can’t leave her hanging”). There are times when it may be difficult for you to see the immediate benefit of showing up at Sunstone Yoga, but when you walk into the studio and see your “partner in crime,” you’ll receive instant gratification by spending time with your friend and knowing you both followed through on your commitment, as well as the long-term health benefits from working out.

Accountability Partners help us focus not only on our day-to-day performance but also on the lifelong habits and practices we need to develop to maintain a healthy lifestyle. If two or more people are united by a common goal, their collective long-term perspective will carry them further than a day-to-day competition in the hot room (“Did you see my Standing Bow today?” “No, but my Triangle was awesome!” “Whatevs, I beat you both in Locust!”). A group fixated only on what happens in the yoga room today is less likely to build a long-term body, mind, life practice. If you and your Partner are working towards living healthier, more-balanced lives both in and outside of the yoga studio, you will be able to remind one another of that long-term perspective and not get caught up in the little things (like whose toes were higher in Standing Bow).

It is easy to acknowledge physical advancement and to have a positive attitude when you are full of motivation, but what happens when your resolve and stamina start to give way? When these moments come, Accountability Partners can objectively determine whether you legitimately need a break or just another dose of motivation, while still keeping the overall goal in mind.

See next week’s blog for the best ways partners can keep each other motivated and on the path towards body, mind, and life fitness.

 

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Set Your Intention — Focus Wristbands as Guides

What does that colorful piece of plastic on your wrist mean to you?  These days, everyone — from politicians to tweens — seems to sport a wristband as a simple reminder of something meaningful to them, whether a way of living, memorial to a friend, or a special occasion.  At Sunstone Yoga, we acknowledge certain steps along your hot yoga journey with colorful Focus Wristbands to remind you of your focus for that point in your practice.

 

You receive your first Focus Wristband when you reach your 10th class.  Wear it with pride!  The dedication and discipline you demonstrated by stepping into our studios nine times after your introduction to our 98.6°F, 60% humidity hot rooms (which the body perceives as 124.6°F) takes resolve, and you have truly earned this recognition.

 

Your next wristbands (handed out in your 25th class and then intermittently until your reach 500 classes) are designed to set a focus or intention as your practice develops.  At the beginning of your yoga journey, you may be most focused on the personal physical goals that prompted you to try hot yoga in the first place.  (We frequently hear that our new students want to lose weight, tone, or increase strength and flexibility.).

 

As such, you may initially associate these Focus Wristbands only with the physicality of your practice — like creating a strong foundation by actively engaging through the feet, contracting the legs and buttocks, and keeping your abdominal muscles strong.  As your practice develops, however, you will become more attuned to the mental and emotional benefits yoga provides, and your wristband collection may incite you to translate those once-physical goals into lifestyle goals..

 

For example, at 75 classes, you will receive the yellow Manipura band, which is associated with finding new Purpose in your yoga practice and possibly your life outside of the hot room.  At this point, you have already worked on building your strong Foundation (25 classes) as well as your growing Desire for your practice (50).  Or maybe you wear your 100-class Balance wristband as a reminder to seek balance between your work and family time, not just when in a balancing posture like Standing Bow..

 

Not only can your wristbands focus your intention inside and outside of the hot room  — they also signal where you are on your journey to your teachers and help instructors personalize and tailor adjustments and suggestions for your practice.  It is wonderful to see students proudly wearing their wristbands into as well as outside of the studio.  If you are wearing your wristbands in everyday life, you may be surprised by the people who approach you to ask whether you also practice hot yoga at Sunstone Yoga!  Our student community is comprised of practitioners from all walks of life, but we all share a passion for yoga and a desire to share our experiences with one another..

 

Set your intention today.  Wear your wristbands! Want to learn more about the goals and focus points we set for our practitioners? Click here.
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Posted in Hot Yoga | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment