Tuesday, July 6, 2010


NEW YORK (Reuters) - When one of Meera Patricia Kerr’s students tried to attend a regular yoga class the instructor told her to come back when she lost weight. “That kind of broke my heart, said Kerr, a yoga instructor and author of “Big Yoga, a Simple Guide for Bigger Bodies.” “Overweight people feel out of the loop. If you’re big you might be uncomfortable in a class of ‘normies,’ even if the instructor is welcoming” she said. “I was young and plump but not as big as I am now,” Kerr explained. “I got bigger and I needed to adapt my practice to the belly and the boobs.” Kerr says some yoga teachers don’t know how to adapt to bigger bodies. “There’s fitness yoga with the bendy girls in their cute little outfits, then there’s the more mystical side which attracts a lot of people, then there’s the plus size, which is becoming more visible,” she said. With almost two-thirds of American women either overweight or obese, according to Centres for Disease Control, and more than 15 million people practising yoga in the United States, according to Yoga Journal, that comes as no surprise.

Kerr said the yogic practice of pranayama, or breath control, is especially good for bigger people. “We store toxins in our fat cells, and these toxins are eliminated through the breath,” she said. “It’s subtle but powerful.” Jessica Matthews, of the American Council on Exercise (ACE), said practising yoga regularly has been shown to increase muscle strength and endurance, upper and lower body strength, flexibility and balance. Matthews, who is a yoga instructor at Core Yoga in San Diego, California, said she strives to create a non-competitive, non-judgmental environment in her classes. But she acknowledges that overweight people may feel vulnerable. Matthews said yoga can encourage overweight people to change their relationship with their bodies, and can lead to weight loss.

Improved flexibility is one of the first benefits of Hatha Yoga. During the first lessons you probably will not be able to touch his toes with your hands, but with practice you will notice a gradual loosening, and the disappearance of pain and tension. Remember that each movement must be done harmoniously.

Hatha Yoga Inbound does not set the model of a slim body and perfect, but on the contrary, it sets a healthy, relaxed and flexible body, in harmony with the mind and the senses; which is very necessary for our journey into the Self. ... With the practice of Asanas, one is gradually released from the tensions, and this means to obtain greater flexibility and less effort in doing any activity, and also to increase attention and concentration. One of the fundamental differences between a young body and a senile body reside in the flexibility of the former and the rigidity of the latter, in other words, "flexibility" is synonymous of youth. The adepts of Yoga retain unique flexibility until a very old age. The secret of Hatha Yoga Flexibility lies in the elongation of contracted muscles, due to effect of slow and progressive tractions.

Yoga Inbound :
“The Secret of Flexibility”

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