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    Student of the Month - Jennifer Bertone

    Last updated 1 month ago

    Posture of the Month - Ardha Kurmasana: "Half-Tortoise Pose"

    Last updated 1 month ago

    Benefits:

    Finally, we forward fold! Half-Tortoise Pose is a reflective, calming posture for our spinal column and our central nervous system. We softly fold into ourselves, allowing our breath to return under our rhythm and prepare for the most intense backbend of the series in the posture following this one. We stretch the spine equally on both sides and give the lungs a chance to recuperate.

     

    Technique:

    Begin sitting your hips on your heels with your feet and knees touching side by side. Take a deep breath and bring both arms overhead sideways. Press your palms together overhead and cross your thumbs to make a prayer position. Stretch your arms in this position straight up to the ceiling, helping you to create a perfectly straight posture with your spine and torso.

    Keeping your hips on your heels and your knees together, slowly bend forward at the waist. Control your descent, allowing your abdominal muscles to strengthen. Place your forehead on the ground, “bowing down,” and keep your hands/palms in prayer position, with straight arms stretching forward above your head. Only the baby-finger side of the hands should touch the ground.

    Keep effort in your stretch forward, even though your body is folded against the thighs and your forehead is resting on the ground, in front of the knees.

    When you exit the posture, try your best to keep the arms long, the spine straight, and your hips connected to the heels. We exit the way we enter, feeling long and lifted, despite the climb against gravity.

     

    The Goods:

    This pose helps to calm our central nervous system with and equalized stretch of the spine on both front and back sides. By continuously stretching the arms overhead while seated and also during the bow of the body, we are giving a subtle stretch to the lungs, increasing their elasticity so that we can prioritize more breath into the body. While folded, we are pressing the organs of the front side body against the heat of the thighs, helping to prepare these organs for a very deep stretch in the next pose. 

    Congratulations, BELLMORE! March's Luckytown Yoga Sweeps Winner!

    Last updated 2 months ago

    You have won Hot Yoga 4 You RVC’s MARCH'S LUCKYTOWN YOGA SWEEPS!

    What exactly have you won, you ask?

    Two weeks of complimentary yoga!
    That’s right, TWO CONSECUTIVE WEEKS of unlimited yoga…complimentary!

    We will choose a “LuckyTown” within our surrounding neighborhoods to offer a knock-your-socks-off yoga deal.  Our promotion runs quarterly (November, February, May, and August) and will be announced on our social networks at the beginning of these months.  But due to the weather in February, we delayed it a month so that you can take advantage of this amazing offer.  And of course, we get more snow, LOL. So we will extend LUCKYTOWN YOGA SWEEPS until April 10th.

    This March's LUCKYTOWN is BELLMORE!
    Please note: Winning LUCKYTOWN residents must activate their 2 weeks by April 10, 2015.   Towel, yoga mat, water not included.


    Some important details:

    • This promotion applies to those with an address within the LUCKYTOWN of BELLMORE only. Must show proof of address such as drivers license, utility bill, etc.
    • This promotion is valid for those living within LUCKYTOWN BELLMORE who have never been to our studio before OR those who have not visited our studio in three years or more.
    • LUCKYTOWN residents must come in to activate their 2-week consecutive unlimited yoga package within the same month of winning announcement.


    With our variety of yoga offerings, you are sure to find what you need and/or what you’ve been missing. Our signature 60-minute classes and our 60-minute Hot Flow with Music classes will be the perfect way to start up or spice up your yoga practice!  

    Please visit our website www.hotyoga4yourvc.com for frequently asked questions and to help you prepare for class.  Or call us at 516.351.7326
     

    Our Reasons for Leaving The Bikram Name

    Last updated 2 months ago

    In March of 2013 the yoga world was dismayed by the ?ling of a lawsuit accusing Bikram Choudhury of sexually assaulting a young woman, Sarah Baughan, at teacher training.

    The sad part, the most grievous aspect of this seedy and unfortunate story is that Bikram’s exploitation of young girls during teacher training was a ”known secret” to those close to him, and indeed to many who attended the training year after year.

    But, known secret or not nobody stopped him, nobody got in the way, nobody reported him.

    It kept on going on in what was described as ”The Overheated, Oversexed Cult of Bikram Choudhury” ¹ until one of these young girls became brave enough to go to a lawyer who ?led a lawsuit. At that point, not only did those at teacher training know the ”known secret”, but so did the world.

    Quickly following the March 2013 news that Bikram had been accused of sexual assault, a few brave studio owners disaf?liated themselves from Bikram, changing the name of their studios from ”Bikram” to take a stand against the type of violence to women that the lawsuit represented.

    The HotYoga4You studios were among this vanguard, taking action on March 22, 2013, removing all ”Bikram” branding and mention of the ”Bikram” name from its studios, less than a month after the ?rst lawsuit was ?led. ²

    That ?rst lawsuit, for sexual harassment, was quickly followed by two more, claiming rape, which was then followed by more rape lawsuits, until the present day. When the most recent lawsuit alleging rape was ?led in February of 2015, it brought the grand total to 6 lawsuits against Bikram Choudhry.

    In response, and as a preemptive strike against studio owners and yoga teachers who might be thinking about taking a moral stand, Bikram spammed the yoga world with emailed threat letters, threatening to retaliate against any teacher who dared to teach at a studio that was not Bikram branded. And the November 19, 2013 email is quoted below:

    ”Teachers who are teaching at illegal, unaf?liated, copy cat studios or teaching shorter classes will have their Bikram Yoga teaching certi?ca- tion revoked and may face legal action for copyright violation.”

    Yet most of the brave teachers, faced with threats of ”revocation” of their teaching certi?cates, and the threatened ”legal action,” did not give in to this intimidation. Some did give in, but most stood their ground, and did not allow Bikram to dictate to them where and how they would be able to teach yoga. After all, yoga belongs not to Bikram Choudhury, but to the world. (The U.S. Copyright Of?ce and Federal Judge Otis Wright both agreed. Yoga cannot be copyrighted. ³ )

    Now, about two years later, with yet another rape lawsuit ?led, some more studios have woken up, realized exactly what the Bikram brand now stands for, and disaf?liated themselves. An example of this new realization is that of Elizabeth Winfeld who was quoted on Yogadork.com:

     

    ” I think the Bikram community on the whole is reaching a tipping point, and I hope one day they all realize they should not have the name of a rapist on their door…anymore than they should call their business after Hitler. I’m happy to see studios slowly stepping away from the fear, control and dogma of Bikram, and offering additional services and becoming more trained as teachers.”?

     

    Yet other studios have kept the ”Bikram Brand” but spoken up against Bikram Choudhury’s abuse of the young women who trusted him as their teacher. And this is another type of bravery.

    And it is important to morally separate the studios who are currently supporting Bikram Choudhury, those with a current Franchise Agreement, and who pay franchise fees, from the earlier established studios. After all it is an obscenity to the peace, harmony and beauty of yoga to ?nancially support Bikram Choudhury, of paying monetary tribute to a man who has been acknowledged to be a sexual predator. Most of the earlier studios, whose agreement with the Bikram organization was made prior to 2009, simply use the Bikram name.

     

    ¹http://www.details.com/culture-trends/critical-eye/201102/yoga-guru-bikram-choudhuryretrieved February 26, 2015

    ²http://www.hotyoga4youny.com/668438/2013/03/22/big-studio-changes.html?source=facebook retrieved February 26, 2015

    ³http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2012-12-17/yoga-astrazeneca-intel-un-intellectual-property

    ?http://yogadork.com/2014/03/04/bikram-studio-owners-teachers-respond-to-rape-charges/retrieved on February 26, 2015.

    February Posture of the Month - "Tadasana: Tree Pose"

    Last updated 3 months ago

    Benefits:

    Here we are at the final posture of our standing series. Tree Pose is designed to stabilize the body to prepare for a brief, resting meditation before beginning our floor series. Being still and upright, while breathing consciously is at the heart of all meditation practices, and we see the form training for that in Tree Pose.

    Technique:

    Stand with your feet touching, side by side. Shift your body over your left leg, and lift your right leg, reaching to hold your right foot. Place your right foot as high up on the left thigh/hip crease as possible, ensuring an external rotation of the right leg/hip. Continue to hold the right foot in place using your left hand. Stand strong, supporting your balance with a firm left leg.

    Place your right hand in prayer position in the center of your chest. Draw in your belly, helping to lengthen your spine against gravity. Stand tall and steady.

    Continue to draw open your right hip by encouraging the right knee and thigh to lengthen out from the torso on a diagonal angle.

    Breathe here, fully engaged and energized in your stability and strength.

    Slowly release, placing your right foot back on the ground, shift your weight and begin the left side.

     

    The Goods:

    This pose solidifies our energy and prepares our bodies for a supine meditation in savasana. Tree pose helps to root our energy and bring our mental focus back from any distractions we have given ourselves to thus far in class. It is an opportunity to become present, to reset, and to stabilize our attention. It also helps to open the hip joints while lengthening the spine. Our hip girdle is notorious for energy reserves and deposits. Because of it’s potential to store, create, and release energy, it is so important to access the hips in this deeply therapeutic approach.  As the hips realign and re-energize, our back and spine sit more comfortably in their seat (the pelvis), and therefore, the entire nervous system feels the effects of this opening and awareness. 

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