Monday, December 30, 2013

Recharged from Ananda!

Full schedule as soon as we arrived!

Yoga in the Blue Sky Center

Another day full of yummy things!
Last day before returning back to the city!
My favorite lake

Outside of the Panini house

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Holiday Schedule, subbings, etc.

Sat Dec 28 Five Points Academy -no class!
Wed Jan 1 Jai Yoga Arts -Special Sankalpa yoga and meditation class! DON'T MISS THIS!
Thurs Jan 2 Jai Yoga Arts noon-1:15pm
Fri Jan 3 Jai Yoga Arts noon-1:15pm
Sat Jan 4 Five Points Academy 1-2pm regular schedule!
Sat Jan 4 Jai Yoga Arts 4:30-5:45pm

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Things have been happening and I got caught up in the happening!

Change often intimidates us. We fear changes because it is so unknown. But in reality what happens is we make up stories about what might happen, and instead of being present, we allow those stories to take off and we are no longer looking at what is true, right in front of our faces. Being stuck or stagnant in our ways may seem comfortable, however it is again, a story or an excuse for shying away from changing.

It is important view change as inevitable, but that usually we bring about smaller changes before bringing about larger changes.  

Monday, October 21, 2013

Breath and feel the present moment!

Our minds tend to regret or put too much emphasis on the past and/or create anxiety about the future. Our breath helps us to stay in the present. Being aware of our thinking/mental patterns helps us to not get caught up in them. Take a breath in and feel the present moment. Feel connected to the universe and truly feel connected to the people in your life.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Change and Changeless

One cannot exist without the other. They are constantly pulling and pushing each other and we are constantly trying to get them to balance out. Just like in our Asana practice we always feel a force forwards and backwards. Pressing down and lifting up. Things unchanged are what help us to ground, be stable and strong. It gives a foundation for everything to build upon. Our changes are what helps us to move forward in life and find new things, new beginnings and take away what we don't need anymore.

Life gives us the unexpected all the time. The way nature flows is unpredictable. There can be storms and waves but we can also have peace and stillness at any given time. When changes comes about we sometimes want to resist or fight it, because we want to stay in our unchanged comfort. What we don't realize is that struggling and staying stagnant is also causing another kind of discomfort. And our tendancy to cling to what is comfort is just an unreal attachment. If we can align with nature and follow the flow, let go of our need to control, this is where we find peace and comfort. Knowing the unpredictable nature of the world we can stand stronger our ground and be able to take what is given to us. As Yogi's our sensitivity to changes are there, we just have to trust ourself and notices the subtle shifts in energy, this will tell us where to go, how much to change and how much we remain unchanged.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

In the beginning there was Yoga

Yogas Citta Vritti Nirodhah

Trying not to let all of the junk that goes on in your head take over. Turning off the mental conversations that you have with yourself can help you have clarity and better focus!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

We can't control the world around us

BUT we can control our breath, and with that, we can control ourselves. Is it interesting how we try to control things that are simply out of our reach. We try to control others to do what we want them to, we try to make things in our life go OUR way. It becomes a struggle at work, in our relationships, at home, with our friends, in any situation in which we want things to be easier for us. But when it doesn't work out we feel disappointed and frustrated. And this is because we were going about it in the wrong manner. We simply cannot control things that are so huge, we cannot control the universe or the world around us. We also cannot control people and/or our relationships! But in trying to do all of this control we easily forget about ourselves. We can control our own breath, we can retain it, we can elongate it, we can make it smoother -can we not? So with controlling the breath, we can notice that we can control our heart rate to some extent as well, we breath deeper and slower -the heart rate goes down. We can also control our bodies and our minds, instead of getting worried and preoccupied we can easily come back to our breath and keep ourselves from getting caught up in the emotions. Experiencing emotions is great but when it begins to hold us down its a whole different ball game.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


I didn't used to like chanting mantras...mostly because they are rarely explained and broken down. I felt like someone was forcing me into "church" when I just wanted to do a gym, no less! I still have mixed feelings about that kind of thing, BUT I have learned to like mantras!

Mantra in sanskrit means manas -mind or consciousness; tra or trayate -to free. So, transcending the mind or creating transformation.

Another aspect of chanting mantras that I have come to like is that the sanskrit words and sounds activate and vibrate the chakras. We have all experienced this from chanting Om at the beginning and ending of Yoga class and though we may not always pay attention to it, we've all noticed its affects.

Favorite mantras:

Om namah shivaya
The chant for Shiva. Giving recognition to your true nature, and the true nature of the universe. 

Om gam ganapataye namaha
The chant for Ganesha. Removing obstacles from our path. 

Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu
May all beings be happy and free

Come to my class at Jai and get your chakras going! Jai Yoga Arts -Bushwick!

Ganesha, Guay Yin Temple in Koh Samui, Thailand

Friday, September 6, 2013

Its September again!

I felt the need to shut it down for a whole month -not just because I was away for most of it, but I just needed to take a little break. And now I'm back!

And because its Ganesh Chaturthi Mahotsav

Monday, August 5, 2013

Flying down the stairs=not Ahimsa

I had so many things on my to-do list today. And now instead, I am doing nothing. I was rushing to get everything done this morning that I literally jumped-ran down the stairs and sprained my ankle. Landed on my butt at the bottom of the stars and everything! Luckily it doesn't seem like a bad sprain and I was able to hobble around to finish the most important errand as well as make it to the acupuncture clinic. But here comes my lesson on Ahimsa...

I was so angry this morning because I had all these errands to run before 2pm. Things were taking longer than I expected, I had to make an extra trip to fix something that was over looked and ultimately I was annoyed, frustrating and running back and forth all over the city. Ok running and biking. When I was biking I was being so super careful, when I was flying down the stairs, not so much. So in the rush, I forgot to be kind and not violent towards my ankle. Now I'm laying down with it elevated and wrapped in smelly Chinese liniments. That's what I get!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

UP, Up and Away!

Get as many balloons as you can and try to fly away!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Tonight I am deciding to let go

I get pretty caught up every once in awhile in other people's business -meaning my friends. Not because I'm a nosy mf, but more because I make excessive efforts to protect them -and its unnecessary. It's a source of energy suckage for me and in real life my friends don't need this so called "help". Today I am actively telling myself to just let go of it. Letting go of the responsibility that is not even mine. Letting go of the people who don't feel responsible, and letting go of situations that might require too much of this attention. The universe is going to play out what it wants to play out and my friends will either do something about it when it affects them, or not. 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Just being in my own flow today.

Thanks to all the inspiring students who came to my class today!

Monday, July 29, 2013


I have been talking about this idea of forgiveness with my friends lately. I think its important to forgive people, no doubt. I think its difficult to talk about forgiveness and compassion when it comes to people who have done things that are universally wrong. I think there are lots of situations that are misunderstandings and disagreements but some are just totally...wrong. I feel like with these situations how does one get past the disgusting things that people do and forgive them...and then also feel compassion for them. Like people who go out of their way to deliberately hurt others? I think its not always achievable to be that "forgiving". Its not realistic and it should not always be expected when it comes to wrongs that are just too huge. I believe there is a back story to the reason why people act the way they do when it comes to these disgusting things but I also think that it goes to far beyond my ability to forgive. And compassion are for people who can benefit from it. That might sound closed minded but I still think there has to be a line that's drawn or we lose site of what's real sometimes.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Dear Yogini's re: surfer punk playlist

If you're not enjoying the playlist...sorry its just a phase. 

Back to Ahimsa

I think the way we can be most kind in the world is to break everything down to the most simplest way. Use common sense, don't be a jerk and don't do things to people that you wouldn't want done to you. Right? Today I am finding that too many people have trouble with the common sense thing.

On a more thoughtful note, I think its important to consider the following when you have the urge to be mean, defensive or aggressive towards someone...that you cannot always know what is going on for a person and sometimes you can only imagine that they could be having the worst day of their life.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The 6 mile plateau

I have been working on my long distance running since March and have gone up to 6 miles. Which I realize is a huge feat for me but maybe not so much for most people, or people who are "real" runners. I feel I've hit a plateau with my distance and its probably 80% mental. When I first broke my 3mile plateau I used the mantra "om namo shivaya" and now I'm looking for the next thing that will get me through! I've traded my barefoot shoes for real running shoes with the intent for upping my mileage! The bonus to my running is that I've finally taken it outdoors on a more regular basis and what better place to run than the Highline! My only gripe is that it doesn't open until 7am and I like starting at 6-6:30 but I guess it doesn't kill me to sleep an extra 30min here and there :) 

Hoping these will take me far!

Friday, July 19, 2013


We talk about ahimsa a lot in Yoga -non-violence. I find its the go to way for some yogi's to talk about being a vegetarian. I respect that whole non-harming to animals. I love animals! But I also eat meat. My point is, to each is own. I do however, dislike when people try to preach their beliefs into my Yoga. To me ahimsa is about not having violent thoughts, emotions or actions, towards others and yourself. This means taking child's pose in class when you need it! Not pushing ourselves when our body asks us to take a rest. I have been thinking about this especially during this NYC heat wave! I had to stop 5 times at water fountain yesterday during my run and also really slow down my pace. I kept noticing other runners pass me, and at first I felt upset that I couldn't keep up, but it was so much hotter than other days! Also I noticed all the long distance runners seemed to be doing shorter runs. And all of the older people who take their walks were taking rests and sitting on the benches. So stay hydrated, rest and find some AC refuge!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Inspiration comes from within

Coming from a creative field I have found myself without inspiration. Writers block, or artists block, etc. I think even in "non-creative" fields people find themselves stumped in life, sometimes depressed or just out of it. Digging deep within is how we can re-find our inspiration. Sometimes our "doing" or active lives get us caught up and we forget to spend time with our true selves. Our true selves are our source of inspiration! Inspiration is a lifting, rising and light. Dig deep within. Its there!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Tips on meditating

I teach a meditation workshop about once a month to people who would really love to meditate but have trouble doing so -many people fall into this category, no? Anyways I composed a list of tips which I found after going over the tips with them, they were able to meditate better than before so here it is:

Tips for meditation

1. Sit comfortably.
Make sure your spine is as straight and long as possible and you can feel both your sit bones on your seat. Your shoulders should be relaxed and not slouching. Use pillows or any props to help make your seat more comfortable or sit in a chair.

2. Keep your eyes closed.
This helps to block out your sense of vision which can be distracting. You might hear some sounds and your first response is to open your eyes and look, but try to keep them closed. Also to keep opening and closing your eyes when trying to meditate makes it more difficult to focus and also can cause headaches or feelings of spaciness.

3. Don't try to "blank" or "clear" your mind.
Instead allow for stillness in your mind. If any thoughts come in, try not to engage in them,  just acknowledge them and them let them go. You can even label them "thought", "sound", "thing", "something" and then let it go.

4. Shake it out.
If your leg falls asleep or you start to feel jittery, shake it out or take a simple stretch. However, make sure you try to keep your noise and movements minimal as you should be conscious that there are others who are in meditation.

5. Make all noises be background noise.
When you hear or notice noises instead of forming an opinion of it being "annoying" or feeling curious about it, keep your eyes closed and notice the sound. Allow it to fall into the background and become something that you are not engaging with.

6. Use a mantra.
If you find it difficult to concentrate use a mantra that you've learned or know like "Om" or "Om Na0a Shivaya" or "Om Gam Ganapataye Namaha" Anytime you have difficulty with concentrating just repeat the mantra silently to yourself. Notice any vibrations in your Chakras.

7. Don't disturb others who are meditating.
If you simply cannot get into it -which happens to everyone -that's ok! But try to sit quietly and find stillness because your shuffling could be disturbing others. If you have to get up try to be as quiet as a mouse, take quiet steps and open and close doors and quietly as possible.

8. Scan your body.
Notice your breath and notice how the air flows in and out of your nostrils. Notice how your ribs and belly expand when filled with air. Notice what your back and body feels like in your seat. See if you can soften and muscles that might be tense. Notice what your body feels like to sit. Notice what your breath sounds like without changing it. See if you can listen to your breath inside of your body.

9. Breath
Still cannot focus? Try alternate nostril breathing exercise, or just count to 4 on your inhales and then exhale for 8.

10. Stop trying so hard!
Although meditation can be difficult, it can also be very easy and simple. Remind yourself of that and try not to be so affected over having difficulty. It's not that big of a deal.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

July 4th Yoga!

Celebrate the 4th by taking noon class at Jai Yoga Arts!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

I just found the coolest pic of Ganesha!

Removing all Karmic obstacles from our paths! With raving and black lights too!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Solstice and Supermoon aftermath

This is the view from laying on a yoga mat in the middle of Times Sq

Everyone does tree pose!

Celebrating the Solstice in Times Sq with Sun salutes!
I'll save you a mat space next time! :)

Friday, June 21, 2013

Gam gam gam

Trying to remove the karmic obstacles with Ganesha energies!
The bija mantra for Ganesh is GAM.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Your physical life is all about the Psoas -its a muscle!

I have been obsessed with the Psoas because it causes me all kinds of problems. And I realize it causes a lot of people...all kinds of problems! Damn you, psoas!

Lower back pain, sciatica, piriformis syndrome, leg length discrepency, shoulder and neck problems. You name it and you can probably trace it back to your psoas. Or not. or this guy Jon Fitzgordon can. So I went to his Psoas release party and learned some pretty cool stretches and exercises to release the Psoas. A few of them felt really good and a few of them I didn't totally understand. He was saying things like "after these psoas parties, people always report that they've slept completely through the whole night". I believed that they were great stretches but somehow I didn't believe I was doing anything that serious that it would make my sleep so amazing. WELL...IT DID. Signed, sealed, delivered and SOLD. I already taught one of moves to a client of mine.

Get down with your psoas and find out what your real problem is!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Victory in the Breath: Ujjayi

The breath in yoga is victorious. It powers our movements and opens up our bodies. We often give up control of our minds and bodies without noticing. Our lives get so busy with jobs, relationships, goals and material things. And because we're not always aware we, allow what we do in life -our Karma to get in the way of our Dharma -our path or living. Our breath takes us back into our bodies and reminds us of our living or true selves. It reminds us to feel what its like to be back in control of our physical self instead of being on auto pilot or just going through the motions of life. When we're feeling anxious or or disconnected we can use the breath to take us back into our body, feel connected again with ourselves. We can use the breath to make our movements more meaningful and powerful in our yoga practice. We can use the breath the bathe the organs and cells with oxygen. Often pain and discomfort in the body is from lack of oxygen to certain areas. Which is why in Yoga we are always emphasizing to breath all the way down into the belly and not just in our chests. To breath into the rib cage and open up the spaces of the ribs. Breath into the back body when we fold forward and breath into the spine to lengthen it and feel space. Feel the victory in your breath as you ride it up into a standing pose or when it helps you to lift your legs in an arm balance. Our breath is strong, our breath is victorious.

Sometimes its the little things that make things different. Breath a little deeper today and notice how things can be a little clearer, little sharper. A little different.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Material things

"Possession of material riches, without inner peace, is like dying of thirst while bathing in a lake."~ Paramahansa Yogananda

I have not bought any clothing, shoes, bags or jewelry since Dec 30 2012!
It's part of my quest to live simpler, lighter and realer. Its working!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Serving up some knees!

I believe this young lady will be ruining the lives of many men...

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Multi-tasking with pedicures

In most cases I am not so into multi-tasking. I know our society is all about that now...but I do find that in many instances the tasks we're trying to accomplished don't get enough attention. It is actually not so efficient. HOWEVER, today I decided to get a pedicure and while doing so...I planned my upcoming workshop and also studied for my herbs quiz. So the difference is? I am not giving myself the its not half-assed and I actually had the chance to zen out, feel good and peaceful while still getting something else done. The cool thing about my experience was...I suddenly turned next to me and realized one of my fellow Yogi's was right next to me doing the same thing! She was getting work done on her laptop while getting a nice pedicure! Great minds think alike!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Old ideas and new teachings

Recently one of the students in a class I taught suggested that I get into Ashtanga Yoga. I have been doing soley Vinyasa style for most of my 14 years of practice. Though nowadays every style seems to be a blend of "Vinyasa, Ashtanga and Iyengar" -still not sure what that means! I have dabbled in Iyengar style which definitely speaks to me. Though it just has not come up for me yet to find myself in Ashtanga. And there is nothing I have against it -despite the fact that many of my fellow Yogi's who are into it have told me its hard on the body and it makes them more prone to injury, but I just have not been in a place in life where it has led me there. The student who suggested it to me seemed to think I was closed off to it but really my life schedule is just filled with all kinds of things like full-time school which also includes constant studying, family, relationships and working. And then on top of that...making time for my own Yoga practice, Muay Thai training and distance running. I would love to try all the studios and all kinds of Yoga -if only I had the means and time. I often sign up for trials or buy class packages for studios to try them out but I find I rarely have time to really use them. I think that its great to be all in with all kinds of Yoga however I do feel that currently its not in my dharma. There is simply no room. So for now...I am focusing on maintaining my regular routines but still finding newness in them. Currently, I am re visiting all of my teacher training materials to discover new ways of getting into poses and also better ways of teaching them to people. Although I am limited in my time I can still make well as practice practice practice!

Sunday, May 19, 2013


I have been doing my runs with more ease! I'm not thinking about it as obsessively and am even starting to...enjoy it! YUP! Running is so great -every time I stop doing it it's like I'm mad at it...and once I start again I truly can't believe why I stopped! Ok rain, now please go away so I can start doing outdoor runs :)

In our Yoga practice we can use our bodies to find flexibility...flexibility in our minds, flexibility in our lives. Our physical practices can help us be freer in our mental practices.

To the mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders” Lao Tze

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Yoga students give me their light.

“He who knows all the answers has not been asked all the questions.”-Confucious

Daya Yoga, Ridgewood

Sunday, May 12, 2013

The Zen of Running

I am trying to run. Actually I do run. But I am trying to run...well? Meaning I am trying to run and enjoy it and not hate it so much! In the past I have never really run for more than 3 miles so I decided to make a running "schedule" about a month ago and have stuck to it pretty well! Last week I finally got to my 4 miles -breaking 3 was a big deal. Since then I have only done it 2 other times but I'm slowly but surely working on it. Kim Kardashian has been extremely helpful in this as I watch Keeping up with the Kardashians while on the treadmill -Kardashian Dash if you will. My goal is an hour or 6 miles...but to be able to handle it every day at some point.

This whole running thing is a big mental challenge for me. First of all I get mentally obsessed -which was the reason for not being able to break 3 miles -I get bored and then convince myself I'm tired, my ankle feels weird, my legs hurt too much, I might get shin splints, etc. I keep looking at the time on the treadmill and 1 or 2 minutes is just torturous! HOW DO PEOPLE STAY ON A TREADMILL FOR AN HOUR?! Also when do your legs stop feeling so friggin sore? So that is the second part of the mental challenge -I'm not even running but I am thinking about my calves being tight and sore -when does it stop? Should I rest tomorrow or do a short run? If I do too many short runs will that make it hard to do 4 miles again? What is this stupid conversation I am having with myself about running all about? Why don't I just stop the conversation and run instead? Yes -good idea.

OK so besides Kim Kardashian, I also have Yoga -duh. So I can't do alternate nostril breathing while running, but I started using the mantra -Om nama shivaya along with the Chakras and there I am feeling all light, mentally letting go of my weird running conversation that goes no where, and just getting it done instead. Thank you, yoga and thank you, Kim. Stay tuned for progress on my running!

Kardashian dashing
Y'all need to read this book!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Healing through your ears!

I know you don't think this looks likes healing...but it is!!! Auricular Acupuncture is the SHIZZZ yo.

If you want to try some FREE auricular acupuncture come to Pacific College on Monday June 24th and July 1 from 6-8pm, 5th floor.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Playfulness part II: movement

Next time you're in a Yoga class let go of your ideas of shapes and poses. Feel your joints and limbs, shake them out, rotate them. How often do we take the time to notice our joints? Notice if you're crunching them or jamming them, see if you can make space in them, make your limbs feel longer. Make space in your body and breath into those spaces. Our joint spaces are a common place for things to get "stuck". If we can pay attention to giving them some love and space we can have happier joints and be less achy!

In downward dog, lift one leg and rotate your hip, knee and ankle. Feel how all 3 joints relate to one another. In cat/cow asana you can rotate your hips and your shoulders, move your body in circular motions. In side angle pose feel the top arm reach up and over and then rotate the whole arm making circles around your face. Try one of these!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Everything is new

We often look to gain experience, gain status, gain labels, gain money, gain love. Gain is such a common theme but we forget to look at things with new points of view and live in our present moment. This can allow us to be more playful in life and therefore able to discover new abilities and experiences. Newness is hard to come by -as each day passes we further ourselves away from our true nature and forget playfulness.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Expanding your consciousness

Going inward and getting in touch and in balance with ourselves is a common meditation practice. Expanding your consciousness is the next step. Notice your relationships with your surroundings. Can you harmonize your energy to expand into the room you're meditating in? And then expand out to the neighborhood, city, state and country? Can you expand your consciousness to encompass the entire Earth? Can you expand to the galaxy and out to the universe? This is not an easy practice so don't feel discouraged if it causes anxiety for you, even. Can you get your energy still and steady so that it does not cause you anxiety? It's difficult to encompass more than you, but being able to connect to nature can create better healing and balancing in your body.

Imagine a magnetic field that is just 3 inches around your body. Feel the white light that surrounds you and expand it out to the sides of the room. Feel how your body is held in this space and the surface that hold the space in. Feel your seat on the ground and feel your crown being held up. Feel expansion.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013


Nothing beats seeing the progress in your Yoga practice. Sometimes you hate your yoga, until its over and THEN you feel great. Or you don't feel like you're progressing fast enough, you still can't touch your toes, "everyone else" can do jump forwards or your scorpion is still 5 years in the making. All of these things come with time. Although its great for us to set goals that we want to reach its also important to remember that yoga is not based on a reward system. The practice itself is the purpose and if you will, the reward. Being consistent in the practice and being present with it is when we can really start to reap the benefits of Yoga. We can't win at Yoga but we can allow it to let us feel awesome.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Bunny Yoga..hoppy Easter!

I don't know who's original art this is, but its GREAT! Love it!

Monday, March 25, 2013

What is Reiki?

I just got Reiki III certified!

Reiki is the laying on of hands for energy healing. 

If you'd like to try some good Reiki juju come to Jai Yoga Arts!

Community Reiki event
This workshop is for both Reiki practitioners and non-practitioners!

Feeling stressed, overwhelmed, or off balance? Come experience Reiki healing sessions with certified practitioners. Enjoy a relaxing,
balancing, and rejuvenating technique in a warm and supportive environment.

Are you a Reiki practitioner? This series at Jai allows you to develop your skill and strengthen your confidence and connection to universal life force energy.

Saturday April 6th, 13th, and 20th from 2-4pm
$40 for whole series
$35 early bird pay by March 30th
$15 drop-in session

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Spirit and Emotion

Today someone asked me..."how do you feel emotionally?" I felt pretty good. But then they asked "how do you feel spiritually?" Initially I wanted to put the two together but I realized....spiritually I felt off and disconnected. Mostly bc I slept weird and my neck and back was bothering me. I felt my back and spine were greatly out of alignment which made me feel like I was not in alignment with myself and had a harder time connecting with what was around me because I was kind of in pain. Though I am still feeling this I do have to say I got a 5-10 min massage and my neck sort of went back into its proper place and although I'm still really improved my whole day by tenfold! The moral of the story is, when your stuff is not lined up properly, your spirit can suffer. Get a damn massage, yo! I am doing that STAT!

Yoga pants.