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Mudras for Migraines February 25, 2011

Filed under: Health,Yoga — brianom @ 10:16 pm

I’ve been reading a book about mudras (ancient yogic hand gestures) lately and am fascinated by their potential for powerful effects not just on yoga practice but overall well-being. I got inspired to check out other sources on the web and found a great video that offers a mudra-based method to relieve migraines. Check it out!

 

Everybody’s Workin’ For The Weekend February 17, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — brianom @ 2:34 am

“Time you enjoy wasting was not wasted.” -John Lennon

It’s been 8 months since I left my day job for the new career as a yoga teacher/massage therapist/holistic magazine publisher/blogger extraordinaire. During the months leading up to the switch I just kept dreaming about all that I’d be gaining from the switch: flexible schedule, a minimalist commute, the satisfaction of working for myself, the tangible feeling of accomplishment from actually physically working for a living, and of course more time to spend doing the things I love to do. I didn’t think much about what I’d be giving up (besides the steady paycheck). As it turns out what I miss more than the regular direct deposit of a steady full-time gig is the time-honored, much beloved weekend.

As a yoga teacher and massage therapist weekends are my prime time! I work at least 8 hours both days of the normal weekend and find myself taking 2 days off sometime during the week. Usually I don’t take those days off consecutively. As luck would have it this week I had both Tuesday and Wednesday off. It was my first real two-day break in 8 months and I have to confess…I’m jealous. It felt sinfully indulgent to have 48 whole hours to use as I pleased. I made my own granola, hummus, and thai green curry. I dragged my juicer out of the garage and made some fresh juice. I went to an actual yoga class with a teacher! I took my dog for a walk in the park. I cleaned our desperately, hopelessly, tragically messy kitchen. I went out to dinner with my favorite guy to our favorite restaurant. It’s been a wonderful treat to have a weekend again.

Maybe this is a case of “the grass is always greener” syndrome. For years I craved the flexibility to set my own hours and the career path that didn’t include sitting at a desk 40 hours a week. Now that I have all that glorious freedom, all I want are my weekends back. In any case, if you ARE one of the folks out there who get a regular weekend EVERY WEEK, I hope you are making the most of it. In the meantime, my unexpected weekend has taught me a few lessons about setting aside time to do the things that are important in life. If we don’t take care of ourselves, our homes, our loved ones…it does not matter how successful we are in our professional life. Making time to do the things that bring you the most joy and satisfaction is essential, whether you take that time on Saturday or Sunday afternoons or like me at 10am on a Wednesday.

I guess I’ll quit complaining about not having a weekend. I’ve got a busy day lined up tomorrow…and then another day off on Friday 🙂

TODAY’S KARMA SCOREBOARD

Tried out a new yoga studio (+2)

Did some grocery shopping and clean up for the house (+2)

Took Dash to the park for the first time in MONTHS (+2)

 

 

Yoga, Massage & More – February 2011 February 5, 2011

Filed under: Massage,Yoga — brianom @ 5:14 pm

Dear Friends,

Let’s face it: It’s been a tough winter! We’re tired from shoveling and salting and climbing over snow banks just to get out our front doors. There isn’t a better time to enjoy the relaxation benefits of massage & yoga than right now!

Restorative Yoga Classes

Restorative yoga is a gentle practice that utilizes props to help support your body in the yoga postures. By adding support, the body is able to melt into the poses providing deeper opening of the muscles and joints. This practice will leave you feeling nourished and well-rested! We will be able to provide some yoga straps, blocks, pillows and folding chairs but please plan to bring your mat, any yoga props you own, as well as a couple of pillows/cushions. The more props you have the more supported and rested you will feel! Email me to register for either class below.

At Heart to Hearts (20 Armour Avenue, Hamilton, NJ), Monday, February 7, 7p – 8p: $15

At Center for Relaxation & Healing (666 Plainsboro Road, Plainsboro, NJ), Tuesday, March 29, 7:30p – 9:15p: $28

Give the Gift of Massage

This Valentine’s Day give your sweetheart the gift of good health! OM Central Jersey Massage offers gift certificates in any denomination and can provide massage services in the comfort of your home or at convenient Plainsboro or Hamilton offices. Visit the website for more details or to purchase your gift massage today.

Pre-Order Now! “Home Practice Basics” Yoga DVD

I’m excited to report that I’ve just begun work on a yoga DVD that will be produced by Donata Films and scheduled for release later this year (hopefully by late spring!) This project evolved as a result of several students in my classes asking what DVD I’d recommend for use between our group sessions. The DVD will offer basic instruction for students looking to deepen their practice by starting to practice at home and will include a full daily practice and an index offering more in-depth instruction on commonly misaligned poses. We’ll be starting with a limited run of 150 DVD’s at the cost of $20 each. If you’d like to pre-order DVD(s) now to ensure that you get yours this spring (no money is due until DVD’s arrive), email me your name, address, phone, email, and the quantity you’d like to order, and I’ll add you to the reservation list!

Relax & Renew Yoga Retreat – DEADLINE EXTENDED!

There are still spots available for the Sewall House Yoga Retreat in Island Falls, Maine and our hosts have graciously extended our deadline. The 4-night “Relax & Renew” yoga retreat will take place from May 19 – May 23, 2011. Sewall House offers the relaxation benefits of a small bed-and-breakfast type getaway with skillful yoga instruction to deepen your practice and calm your mind. I’ve put together a package that includes 7 yoga classes (small setting with individual attention), home-cooked vegetarian meals, private guest room at historic Sewall House, and group transportation to Maine from central NJ for $925.

For more information on Sewall House you can read posts from my blog, visit their website, or check out the fall issue of New Jersey Namaste News. More information on the retreat package can also be found at my website. Space is limited, so either email me or call me at 609-306-2618 to reserve your spot.

Advertise in the Spring Issue of NJ Namaste News

If you or anyone you know has a business of interest to the yoga/holistic community in New Jersey – this is a great opportunity to expand your reach. Our spring issue will include articles on Earth Day, cloth diapers, different schools of yoga, homemade lip care products, and will have an expanded food section to help you make the most of that fresh produce coming to the Garden State as the weather gets warmer! For more information on advertising, visit our website, www.njnamastenews.com. Listing your yoga class or event is only $15 and display ads start at $90!

Join One of My Regular Yoga Classes

Sundays 10:30am – 11:30am at Onsen for All, Kingston, NJ (Gentle)

Sundays 11:30am – 12:30pm at Onsen for All, Kingston, NJ (Multi-level)

Mondays 7pm – 8pm at Heart to Hearts, Hamilton, NJ (Gentle)

Tuesdays 6pm – 7pm at Onsen for All, Kingston, NJ (Beginner/Intro)

All classes are $15 for drop-ins. For classes at Onsen for All, please pre-register by calling 609-924-4800.

Stay safe, happy, and healthy!

Brian

 

Restorative Yoga February 4, 2011

Filed under: Yoga — brianom @ 4:01 pm

This week has been exciting both professionally (working on a new DVD, teaching a great workshop on Yoga for Pain Relief, pulling together a new edition of NJ Namaste News) and personally (celebrating a milestone birthday with mom, yet another wintry storm, and several vigorous yoga practices).  Even though all of these things are “good” (with perhaps the exception of the mid-week winter mess), having a life that is constantly full of activity can really be draining. Many people come to yoga to find that quiet space where they can be still amidst the busy-ness of the everyday world. However, I’ve found that even my yoga practice needs to be more restful from time to time. This morning I practiced restorative yoga – an approach that encourages maximum support from bolsters, blankets, blocks, straps, etc. while holding poses for an extended period of time. You certainly use less physical/muscular energy but you also gain a deep opening in the joints and muscles while facilitating a feeling of deep calm and relaxation. It felt great!

I was trying out some poses for a couple of Restorative Yoga workshops I have coming up over the next 2 months. If you are in the area and want to try this deliciously nurturing practice for yourself, sign up for one of my workshops!

Monday, Februay 7: 7p – 8p at Heart to Hearts in Hamilton, NJ. Cost = $15

Tuesday, March 29: 7:30p – 9:15p at Center for Relaxation & Healing in Plainsboro, NJ. Cost = $28

 

Feel the Rhythm January 24, 2011

Filed under: Following the Path,Grace,Yoga — brianom @ 8:00 pm

Have you ever noticed that sometimes your life feels totally in sync? It’s as if all of the moving parts in your universe seem to align themselves perfectly. That opportunity you’d been waiting for knocks at just the right time. You connect with that old colleague who becomes a valued business associate again. You’re in the right place at the right time to meet a new potential client and forge a lasting relationship. Life feels like a miraculous symphony with all of the players beautifully playing their parts.

Maybe you’ve also noticed that sometimes you feel like there is very little synergy to life at all. Projects, deadlines and tasks seem to pile up in a chaotic and difficult way. Nothing seems to mesh just right. Your work or personal life (or worse yet both) seem to be in a rut.

I think that perhaps one of my favorite one hit wonders from the 90s put it best. Take a listen to Dog’s Eye View’s “Everything Falls Apart”…

Look past hunky(?) frontman Peter Stuart’s over-the-top gyrations and hear the message ring true: Sometimes your up, sometimes your down and know that there’s little you can do to change that. When you’re feeling on top of the world, undoubtedly misfortune is around the corner. When you’re down and out, just hold on for one more day (thank you 90s supergroup Wilson Phillips) and things will turn your way. That’s the way of the world, right? Right?

What if there’s a way to keep yourself dancing to the rhythm of life no matter what happens? What if we can always feel we are in “the flow” creating the best possible present out of the seemingly random circumstances of life. Or better yet, what if there was a way we could actually create the best possible world in which to live just with our own positive attitude and actions?

It would be all too convenient for the yoga teacher in me to offer yoga practice as the all-purpose tool that could keep our lives on track – full steam ahead. However there are certainly yogis among us who power through a physical practice of yoga without much intent upon nourishing themselves in a spiritual way. I’m not pointing fingers at particular subsets of our yoga community. I just know from experience that there are as many reasons to practice yoga as there are people practicing yoga. Some folks are just not that interested in the spiritual potential in yoga practice. Yoga can be a very powerful life-changing tool that can probably give us that feeling of being at one with the fluctuating rhythm of life. However, I believe that any practice that awakens our own mindfulness to our own internal rhythm would do the trick nicely – mediation, yoga, prayer, chanting, tai chi (heck, I’m sure even knitting or baking or breakdancing could work too). When we become aware of our internal rhythm (our breath deepening, our thoughts slowing down, our body relaxing) and our actions become more instinctual and less “heady” we probably make better choices than when we overanalyze every move we make. We’ve all heard folks say that “going with their gut” has led to positive outcomes. If we sustain that oneness with our internal rhythm we probably notice that the external rhythm (the ever-fluctuating ups and downs of life) are not that different from our own internal experience — our breath causes the abdomen and chest to expand and contract, the passing of day and night causes our energy to wax and wane, the change of seasons causes adjustments in our body’s systems, etc. Our body is full of the rhythm of the universe.

So how to “put things back together when everything falls apart”? Or better yet how do we keep things from falling apart in the first place? Find the rhythm. Feel the rhythm. Start the journey by closing your eyes and being at one with your breath. From there you can watch the dance unfold!

TODAY’S KARMA SCOREBOARD

I’ve been very lousy about making time to post my thoughts here at this blog as I’ve gotten caught up with the “busyness” of business (-5)

I posted today and all we ever have is today. Livin’ in the now bonus: (+10)

 

 

Massage, Yoga & More – January 2011 January 7, 2011

Filed under: Health,Massage,Namaste News,Yoga — brianom @ 4:40 pm

Dear Friends,

Happy New Year to all! At the start of the new year, many of us make healthy resolutions to exercise more, lose weight, make more time for yoga or other mindfulness practices, or simply enjoy life to the fullest. In this month’s newsletter I’m highlighting a few resources that can help keep your resolutions on track!

FREE YOGA

We’re kicking off the new year at Heart to Hearts with a free gentle yoga class this coming Monday, January 10 at 7pm. Please email me to register as space is limited. We’ll meet on Mondays from 7pm – 8pm throughout January & February at Heart to Hearts, Hamilton, NJ. Come to our free class for specials on packages of 3 or 6 classes!

Yoga for Pain Relief Workshop

I will be leading a workshop at the Center for Relaxation & Healing in Plainsboro on Sunday, January 30 from 9am – 11am. We will focus on several common physical pain patterns (such as low back, knee, and shoulder pain) and offer sequences of yoga poses to provide relief. The practice of yoga encourages proper alignment, muscle lengthening & strengthening, and relaxation of the nervous system. These benefits can all have a significant effect on pain relief. Participants are encouraged to request in advance areas of the body they’d like to have covered in the workshop. To register email Michele at the Center for Relaxation & Healing. Registration fee is $32.

In-Home Yoga Startup Package

Interested in starting a yoga practice but intimidated by the hard bodies at the gym or local studio? I’d be happy to come to your home for 5 private 1-hour sessions to help develop a practice that meets your needs and goals. I’ll offer guidance with yoga postures, breathing techniques, and meditation/relaxation exercises. This special package for new private yoga clients is only $185 when purchased by January 31, 2011. Call me at 609-306-2618 for a consultation and to schedule your sessions.

 Relax & Renew Yoga Retreat – RESERVE BY JANUARY 31!

I’m ecstatic to share the news that I’ve partnered with Sewall House Yoga Retreat in Island Falls, Maine to offer a 4-night “Relax & Renew” yoga retreat from May 19 – May 23, 2011. I have visited there three times and have experienced such powerful peace and growth during my visits that I’d like to share that with all of you. Sewall House offers the relaxation benefits of a small bed-and-breakfast type getaway with skillful yoga instruction to deepen your practice and calm your mind. I’ve put together a package that includes 7 yoga classes (small setting with individual attention), home-cooked vegetarian meals, private guest room at historic Sewall House, and group transportation to Maine from central NJ for $925.

For more information on Sewall House you can read posts from my blog, visit their website, or check out the fall issue of New Jersey Namaste News. More information on the retreat package can also be found at my website. Space is limited, so either email me or call me at 609-306-2618 to reserve your spot. 

The January 2011 Issue of NJ Namaste News is HERE!

We have terrific articles on making and keeping resolutions, karma yoga, finding a home yoga studio, healthy winter recipes, yoga for kids, and more. If you’d like to view our digital version, click here. If you want to help support our effort to spread the word about yoga and healthy living, you can purchase an annual subscription (4 issues) for $15 at our website, www.njnamastenews.com. Simply click on the PayPal link from the homepage. If you have a business of interest to New Jersey’s yoga & holistic communities, we have many affordable advertising options to help grow your clientele. Email me for more information!

Visit AllThingsHealing.com

As of December 2010, I’m now the Assistant Editor of the massage section at AllThingsHealing.com. The website is a valuable resource for information on topics from a wide spectrum of holistic fields. Visit the Massage Page now to read my article “5 Reasons to Add Massage to Your Self-Care Routine”.

Ongoing Yoga Class Schedule 

Sundays 10:30am – 11:30am at Onsen for All, Kingston, NJ (Gentle)

Sundays 11:30am – 12:30pm at Onsen for All, Kingston, NJ (Multi-level)

Mondays 7pm – 8pm at Heart to Hearts, Hamilton, NJ (Gentle)

Tuesdays 6pm – 7pm at Onsen for All, Kingston, NJ (Beginner/Intro)

All classes are $15 for drop-ins. For classes at Onsen for All, please pre-register by calling 609-924-4800.

Wishing you the very happiest and healthiest 2011!

Namaste,

Brian

 

2010 in review January 2, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — brianom @ 2:51 pm

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads This blog is on fire!.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 2,500 times in 2010. That’s about 6 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 85 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 125 posts. There were 90 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 72mb. That’s about 2 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was September 21st with 42 views. The most popular post that day was The Peace Abbey.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were facebook.com, centraljersey.com, omcentraljerseymassage.com, mail.yahoo.com, and mail.live.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for eka pada koundinyasana, overflowing inbox, gratitude yoga, yoga arm balance poses, and yoga arm balances.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

The Peace Abbey May 2010
2 comments

2

Gift 28: Dedication August 2010
3 comments

3

Bringing Gratitude to Your Yoga Practice November 2010
4 comments

4

Meet Me Now September 2009
4 comments