Yoga By Equinox Parody Video = Hilarious

Yoga By Equinox Parody Video = Hilarious

If you saw the amazing video I posted of my friend Briohny Smyth doing yoga in a video for Equinox fitness you will get a good laugh out of this “Equi-not” as he calls it yoga video parody by humorist Michael A. Stusser.

To his credit also Michael gave an interview with magazine Well and Good in NYC  which is totally worth the read in which he discusses the controversy surrounding the  Equinox video with Briohny Smyth and give’s his take on the situation.

For those of you too busy (or let’s be real…lazy) to click on the link above I’ll give you the short version of what he said to the people being negative .

STOP WHINING!

Just because she is wearing underwear doesn’t take anything away from how beautiful and talented she is or how amazing the video is.

ZIP IT!

I couldn’t agree more.

Thanks Michael Stusser!

Enjoy the video!

Yoga and Fitness Streamed LIVE: CNN Gives Yogis Anonymous a Shout Out!

Anita Avalos enjoys yoga via Yogis Anonymous at home!

I was so stoked to see Yogis Anonymous get a mention on CNN for their LIVE streaming yoga classes!

What could be better than fitness and yoga brought to you in the comforts of your own home? CNN gives a shout out to streaming LIVE online classes, because let’s face it watching the  same ‘ol DVD gets pretty darn boring!

I grew up in the sticks where the nearest yoga studio or gym was a good 30min drive and the few class times they offered were either the wrong level inconvenient times for me. Forget about getting to take from a variety of instructors and styles it was very limited as far as choices go.

So there I was with my videos. Boooooorrrrring. I knew the tapes so well I would tell the jokes before the instructor…things were a bit stale to say the least!

Another place I lived I would drive an hour and fifteen minutes to my yoga classes. Needless to say my yoga practice suffered. I couldn’t always make it to class so I would do my yoga at home. Unfortunately my home practice lacked enthusiasm and soon begun to feel like a chore. Flash forward to me now living in the yoga land of plenty Los Angeles a.k.a. “Mecca” so to speak for yogis everywhere.

Interestingly enough I still find there are times where I am not able to make it to my favorite teachers/classes and feel so lucky to be able to do a fresh practice online with some truly amazing teachers!

Badass Yoga Video: Briohny Smyth Inspires Us To Get On The Yoga Mat

Badass Yoga Video: Briohny Smyth Inspires Us To Get On The Yoga Mat

Wanna see something badass? Watch the video above of my friend yoga teacher Briohny Smyth doing an incredible yoga video for Equinox Fitness.

This video is inspiring because it’s like watching two old people holding hands as the walk down the street, it shows love and commitment. I think maybe what inspires me the most however is that it shows a continual curiosity.

Yoga is endless.

Just when you think you’ve mastered one aspect of it, trust me you’ve only just begun.

I often liken my yoga practice to a relationship. If you ever find yourself in a long relationship regardless of how amazing you or the other person is you will probably feel bored at one point or another. It makes me want to cringe just saying it, because part of me does not want to accept that to be true.

However, the good news is, you don’t have to be. See, boredom is the assumption that there is nothing left to know, there is nothing new. This is never true. You can never know anyone completely, because they are always evolving with every breath. You just have to be curious. Dig deeper. The same goes for yoga, you will never know everything about yoga. In fact, the more you know, the more you know you don’t know. So cliché’ yet so true. Hopefully this video makes you peel back the curtain and be curious. Roll out your yoga mat and gaze at it like a newfound lover. Get curious.

Yoga for the New Year: Try Something New this Time!

Mackenzie Miller of The Hot and Healthy Blog doing anti-gravity yoga!

Try something new this time

by guest blogger  Allison Brooks

Every time around this year, it never fails.  You hear people talking about their New Year’s Resolutions and how they are going to stick to them this year. It is the same ole same, but why not try something new for a change. Instead of hitting the gym daily, and depriving yourself of chocolate and carbs, why not grab a friend and go to a yoga class. I know, I know, you are probably thinking, “but I can’t even do the splits” but that is why yoga is perfect for anyone. There are so many types of yoga that there is one out there for you. Trust me. Below I listed three alternative forms of yoga to help get the ball rolling.

One fun alternative is AcroYoga. This form of yoga combines acrobatics, healing arts, and traditional yoga poses to create a fun and balanced class. Since the poses are based on the effort of two people, it is a great way to set a goal with a friend or significant other. A “base” and a “flyer” perform aerial poses to rejuvenate the body’s energy and build/tone muscle mass. It fun class to take at the end of busy week when you want to let loose and have fun, while getting a good workout.

Another great “end-of-the-workweek” yoga is laughter yoga. Though there is not much traditional asanas associated with it, the mental and spiritual effects are compared to the mainstream yoga. Laughter yoga is a great stress reliever and core-toner. It is sweeping studios and nursing homes by storm because it helps a person “let-go” or issues and boosts morale. Many elderly patients have adopted laughter yoga as well as people with aggressive cancer diagnoses, like a non-hodgkin’s lymphoma or mesothelioma prognosis.

AntiGravity yoga is another form that is a fun twist to traditional yoga practices. Students get to perform poses hanging and stretching from a silky hammock attached to the ceiling. It is a very physically intense yoga and is a great way to really work that upper body, get tone and reenergize the mind-body connection. AntiGravity yoga combines Pilates, dance, calisthenics, and acrobatics with traditional asanas to create a fun alternative yoga.

So as the New Year creeps up, try and set a goal that is not based on the gym. Yoga studios are always welcoming to new students. You will reach your goals while becoming a better you, inside and out.

Five Ways To Stay Fit And Sane During The Holiday Season

Here Are A Few Simple Ways To Stay Fit, Feel Great And Maintain Your Sanity During The Holidays.

Do holidays leave you feeling drained and flabby?

Even the best intentions sometimes get laid to waste during the eggnog-fueled, candy-ridden, hustle and bustle of the holiday season. Not to mention the guilt that sometimes goes along with turning down another slice of grandma’s pie,…that oh, by the way, she baked especially for you!

Overindulgence is practically synonymous with the holiday season and sometimes a source for a great deal of anxiety for those of us who still want to slip into the same size yoga pants at the end of all the craziness.

Is that vain?

Sure, I will admit to a little vanity, but why does love have to come with love-handles?

I mean surely there is a way to stay sane, and fit and leave everyone at home feeling loved without busting your pocket-book or the seams on your favorite yoga pants. Below are some of my favorite strategies…

  1. Lend A Helping Hand In The Kitchen. Yogis don’t complain, they pitch in and help out. Roll up your sleeves and help out a  little! Is there a farmers market near mom’s? Great! Buy some fresh veggies and introduce them to some exciting new dishes! With a little effort your family will soon be having a love affair with Kale and even better mr. fatty mashed potatoes  will have to make room for some new friends on the dining room table.
  2. Make Fitness A Family Affair. So you can’t convince your mom to turn on the stove full blast and crank the heat in the house so you can make her place into your own personal hot yoga studio? Don’t despair. Baby steps  lil’ yoga tiger! If your family isn’t into yoga try taking them on a brisk morning walk, sledding, ice-skating or any other calorie-busting activity that is fun and gets everybody moving.
  3. Tricks Are For Kids…And Bored Grown-Ups! Sometimes you must have a few tricks up your sleeve to grab people’s interest. If it seems impossible to get your “too-cool-for-school” teen-age cousin to try a yoga class try teaching him how to balance on his hands in crow pose. Can’t get your mom to go with you to your morning vinyasa yoga class? Try teaching her cat-cow after a long day of shopping to loosen up tight lower back muscles. You get the idea….
  4. Redefine Your Idea Of A Workout. Stir crazy? Before the hamster in your head runs off of its wheel get up off of your tuckus and DO something! Shovel snow, rake leaves, or help your mom re-organize the garage. Focusing on how you can be of service or seva (self-less service) doesn’t have to be completely self-less to earn you some good karma points…and you will feel great doing it too!
  5. Stay Present And Practice Gratitude. Let’s face it, the holidays are a total sensory overload. I promise though that drinking yourself silly or trying to get grounded by gnawing your way through a pile of stuffing is not the answer. Wake up early to carve out some time for yourself or step away from the din once in a while to practice gratitude. Sure, your family isn’t perfect and things are chaotic. Sometimes it may feel like you are being swept up in holiday that focuses on draining your pocketbook and adding another digit to your pant size. However, at the heart of the holiday season is an opportunity to re-connect with loved ones and be grateful for the families we’ve been given. Whether they are blood relatives or just a motley bunch of characters that are dear to our hearts, the holidays are about bonding with your family. Take a moment to remember why you braved holiday traffic, long airport lines and general holiday insanity in the first place. Reconnect to the true meaning of the holiday season. Breathe, count your blessings, review the things you LOVE about each family member, and then get out there and spread the love!

Here’s To Happy Holidays, Family, Sanity and Staying Fit!

Yoga Girl Video and Whole Foods Parking Lot

Did you miss the whole Foods parking lot video? How about Yoga Girl? These videos are a MUST see!

I predict the Yoga Girl video and Whole Foods parking lot videos being the  best music videos of 2011, but I guess I’m a bit biased! These yoga music videos are hilarious, genius even,…and it all takes lace in my back yard here in Santa monica, CA. Yup! I have friends in music videos now, I think that quite possibly just made me a little cooler.sweet.

If you are a yoga girl yourself you are probably know that those lululemons can sometimes garner attention  of the male variety, for better or for worse.

Case and point…

Monday I had just finished teaching a class and was about to eat lunch at Whole Foods with a friend and got asked by a couple of extra friendly guys to sit and have lunch. We declined, but I did give one of them my card when he said he wanted private yoga lessons. When he contacted me later that day it turns out he did indeed want  lessons, with one small caveat…it had to be naked. Very funny.Needless to say no lessons took place.

Then yesterday a kind gentleman struck up a conversation in line at Whole Foods (I am seeing a pattern here) and then asked me if he could hire me to be his yoga dominatrix. I laughed. He said “I’m serious”. I explained that although having my students hold plank pose in a hot room is probably somewhat similar, dominating someone was not my thing. We parted ways with him slightly disappointed and me giggling inside and wondering what the hell is up with yoga girls and guys who go to Whole Foods.

Yoga Workshop on Inversions with Angela Kukahn Saturday Febuary 11th from 12:30-3:30pm

Yoga Workshop on Inversions with Angela Kukhahn Saturday February 11th from 12:30-3:30pm
Angela Kukhahn in Handstand. Photo by Jasper Johal
In Advance: $45
Day Of: $55
This is an All Levels Class!
Playing Upside Down: From Fear to Fun!
In this workshop we will explore inversions with a sense of adventure, curiosity and most of all fun! Inversions are for everyone and are extremely beneficial in strengthening the body and focusing the mind. We will work on the strength and flexibility needed for inversions, develop core awareness and discover proper alignement for floating and flying. We will explore headstand, forearm balance, and handstand. In addition we will explore how different variations and the use of props make inversions approachable to just about anyone! Come expecting to sweat, laugh, play and fly!

Yoga Music Playlist No. 18 “Hot and Sweaty”

Music Playlist For Vinyasa Yoga!
Here is a music playlist I used for my “Hot and Sweaty” yoga sequence last Sunday. The yogi in the photo is yoga teacher Marysia Weiss of the HotandHealthy blog. Photo by Jim Knowles.
  1. Initiation (Change) Adam Plack & Johnny (White Ant) Soames
  2. Spiritual Dreams (feat. Chillwalker) Zina Rao
  3. Fiebre Tropical Chucha Santamaria Y Usted
  4. Om Namah Shivaya (Bhakti Brothers MahaDread Omstrumental) MC Yogi
  5. I’m Not Done (R/D Remix) Fever Ray
  6. Trick Pony Charlotte Gainsbourg
  7. Intertwine Beats Antique
  8. Circulation Beats Antique
  9. California Soul Marlena Shaw & Diplo
  10. I Might Be Wrong Radiohead
  11. When I Grow Up Fever Ray
  12. Bullet and A Target Citizen Cope
  13. Watching You Well The National
  14. Crystalised The xx
  15. Everywhere I Go Lissie
  16. Sweet Rain euphoria
  17. Stay Human (Stereo Steambath Remix) Michael Franti & Spearhead
  18. Tiger By My Side Empire of the Sun
  19. Ghost Dance Tulku
  20. Wish You Were Here Wyclef Jean
  21. As If You’ve Never Been Away Ulrich Schnauss
  22. Lay Myself Down Mazzy Star
  23. Metal Heart Cat Power
  24. Hey Ma Durga Krishna Das & Baird Hersey & Prana
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