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yogawithaislinn yogawithaislinn

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Aislinn Coleman  you can't... until you can.✨ ॐ bay area yogis, practice with me : ⚡️👇🏼⚡️

http://yogawithaislinn.com/findaclass

⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️ Day 2️⃣3️⃣ of #BalanceKingdom with @cyogalab ↪️ #Visvamitrasana variation ⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️ Let’s scale things back a bit and try something slightly more manageable, shall we? This is a very challenging arm balance to be sure, but without as many complex elements as today’s main challenge pose – and it’s a great prep pose to start working that leg higher and higher up towards the shoulder, and eventually behind your head and neck. You’ll want to warm up your shoulders, wrists, hamstrings and hips with some side planks, planks, forward folds and twists before attempting this shape. Feel free to drop the back knee if that helps you find your balance – you could also press your bottom foot against a wall for extra stability in this and all other side plank variations. From a #WarriorII stance with your left foot forward, grab your left calf muscles with your left palm from the inner leg and begin to work your shoulder behind the knee – really wedge it in there, like you’re wearing your left leg as a backpack strap. If you can get it well above the elbow, you’re in good shape! Plant your left palm firmly, fingers spread wide, hand behind your left foot, and begin to squeeze your left upper arm with your left leg. (Think: juice your arm with your leg! 💪🏼🍋💦) Extend your right arm up towards the sky, rooting down into a side plank through the entire sole of your right foot, and look up! Let's do this -- just a few days left in the challenge, can you believe it?!
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📸 : @tamalynannphotography

⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️ Day 2️⃣1️⃣ of #BalanceKingdom with @cyogalab ↪️ #VerticalSplits or #UrdhvaPrasaritaEkaPadasana with hands wide ⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️ Today’s variation is a simplification of the bound version offered by Carmen; though it elicits choruses of groans most days when I teach it, this pose in its most basic form is one of the most important ones to get (relatively) comfortable with if you’re working to smooth out your entry into inversions, and work towards all different kinds of straight-leg presses 💪🏼. Widening the hands is a fantastic intermediary step towards lifting them completely off the ground! Make sure you stretch out and warm up your hamstrings with a lot of forward folds and maybe even some twists; start standing, and come into #uttanasana aka #standingforwardfold. Extend one leg up and back, tracing the inseam of your yoga pants with your lifted big toe to internally rotate that thigh bone – just like you would in your regular #Splits or #Hanumanasana 🐒. Relax the crown of your head down – no balancing with the neck! – and keep your lifted leg super engaged as you walk your palms out to the sides. Tent your fingers if you’re feeling brave; you could even play with lifting one or both of your hands, like you’re flying! Wheee! 🐥🦅 Be sure to keep your lifted leg suuuuper active all the way out through the toes to help feel lighter and simplify the balance. Things are really heating up now, my fellow yogis! 🔥🔥 Keep up the great work!
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📸 : @tamalynannphotography

⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️ Day 1️⃣9️⃣ of #BalanceKingdom with @cyogalab ↪️ #TwistInterlock ⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️The #BoatPose twist presented today is a deceptively challenging pose. I remember the first time I tried to make that shape after seeing it on Instagram, I immediately tumbled to the floor and declared the pose impossible. I know now that it’s not impossible, but it *does* require a deep twist and very open shoulders to attempt; that’s why for today’s variation, I’ve chosen the foundational pose for all deeper twists. Feel free to use a strap and/or keep the back knee on the ground if that helps you go deeper. From a #lunge, hook your right elbow outside your left thigh, and start in a prayer twist, wedging your leg higher and higher up the arm – the closer to the armpit, the easier the bind! Once you’re well above the elbow towards the underarm, split your arms, internally rotate your shoulders (think of flipping your palms down and back like you have wings) and wrap around and under your thigh, grabbing your strap, fingers, hand, or left wrist. Just like in our other deep twists, you can level up the challenge by moving your #drsti or gaze up! I recommend adding this pose to your regular practice if it isn’t already there; twists have never been a natural strength for me on my mat, but consistently working on this particular shape has opened up a lot of other challenging poses like #pasasana, #corkscrew and even #yogidandasana, all poses I was sure were impossible in my own body. Try this one out and remember to have fun with it – and make sure to practice this one on an empty stomach!! (Trust me, I learned this the hard way!)
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📸 : @tamalynannphotography

⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️Day 1️⃣7️⃣ of #BalanceKingdom with @cyogalab ↪️#PasasanaPrep ⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️Ah, my old nemesis -- #NoosePose. Could it possibly sound any less appealing, though? This #asana will help with warming up your spine, shoulders, calves, quads, toes, stretch out your Achilles’ tendons and soles of your feet, and, of course, test your balance! I’ve never been able to get my heels within the same zip code as the floor, so if you’re also finding that your heels float and its interfering with your balance, grab a blanket or cushion to rest your heels on. Start in a squat, and just like you would in a #SideChair, hook your left elbow outside your right thigh, working your thigh as high up the arm as possible. Align your elbows and wrists in a straight line, and press your palms together; for an extra challenge, look up! Do your best to keep your knees and big toes together – zip everything into your midline as you continue to twist. As I mentioned earlier this month, it’s important to maintain the integrity of the “seat” of any twist, and once again the seat is the actual seat (your hips), so ensuring the knees stay together keeps the base of twist stable for your spine to move freely. Now, I know I give this piece of advice a lot, but only because it’s basically always applicable: be sure to breathe, even in Noose pose! As the name implies, it’s no easy feat to take a deep breath, but not only is it massively beneficial to attempt to breathe deeply while in an intense twist, it can also help you go much deeper. Every time you take a full breath, as you exhale, deepen the twist progressively, and notice how much further you can go when you allow the breath to be your ally, helping you go deeper, rather than something you struggle against. Keep up the fantastic work – this challenge has been a blast so far, I’ve loved seeing all of your posts and unique “twists” (pun intended)!
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📸 : @tamalynannphotography

⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️Day 1️⃣5️⃣ of #BalanceKingdom with @cyogalab ↪️ #Twist Variation on #VerticalSplits or #UrdvhaPrasaritaEkaPadasana in #Headstand or #SirsasanaA ⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️This is another somewhat deceptively challenging pose, but if you take the time to warm up your core, stretch + warm up your hamstrings like you would for your regular #splits or #hanumanasana and practice a few #twists, you have a good shot of making this happen. To approach this pose, you’ll want to set up your foundation for headstand; elbows shoulder-width apart, interlace your fingers, crown of the head to the floor, and begin to lift your legs into your headstand. Once up, start to twist in the spine and hips before moving the legs. Once you feel fairly deep in the twist and relatively stable, begin to lower your straight left leg down and over towards your right elbow, all the while keeping your right (lifted) leg extremely active, from your glutes to your toes. Move slowly; the tricky thing here is that if you lower the leg too much, it will pull your pelvis down and you’ll likely lose your balance that way, so you want to make sure you compensate for the rotation of your pelvis and the extra weight pulling it down by reaching your right toes as high up to the sky as possible – the counterbalance of your legs moving away from each other is how you maintain this tricky balance. Make sure to do both sides, and let me know how it goes! Can’t believe we’re already halfway through!!
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📸 : @tamalynannphotography

⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️Day 1️⃣3️⃣ of #BalanceKingdom with @cyogalab ↪️ #PigeonPose or #EkaPadaRajaKapotasanaI with #Garuda or #EagleArms ⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️This is one of those poses that looks deceptively simple, but requires a ton of muscular engagement to maintain. After warming up your shoulders, back and hips with some lunges, cobras, chest openers and other backbends, start in a #OneLeggedKingPigeonPose prep, and walk your hands up to your front shin. If you find that you can’t stop tilting off to one side, I recommend putting a block, blanket or bolster underneath your front outer hip to square the pelvis and steady yourself; this will also ensure that your backbend is even, instead of mostly felt on one side of your lumbar spine. Once your foundation is established, come up onto your fingertips, straightening your arms, and invest a few breaths into lifting up through the center of your chest. Keep squaring your torso and hips forwards, and once you’re stable and beginning to feel your back muscles engage, lift one hand at a time; cross your upper arms and either press the backs of your hands or your palms together. As you stay here, think of lifting your elbows as high as you can to go deeper in this backbend. Whichever leg is in front is the same side as the arm that crosses underneath. I like to cue my students to try and “break the ceiling” with their elbows; this ensures that you’re continuously lifting the sternum to decompress the lower back, instead of just launching backwards and letting gravity pull you down. Make sure your shoulders stay out of your ears👂👂(no trapezius involvement!) and you lengthen through the sides of your neck. Of course, remember to breathe as you take flight here! Random thought: I wonder what kind of bird results from crossing a pigeon and an eagle? 🤔
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📸 : @tamalynannphotography

⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️Day 1️⃣1️⃣ of #BalanceKingdom with @cyogalab ↪️ #FunkyHeadstand in #BaddhaKonasana ⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️Today’s main pose is quite a doozy – there are multiple asymmetrical components involved, each of which makes balancing in a headstand that much more challenging. For this modification, I’ve taken out the asymmetry of the legs -- harkening back to that headstand we played with a few days ago – and instead focused on finding stability with a lopsided base. I’ve chosen #BaddhaKonasana legs here because I find the lowered + widened center of gravity to be much more manageable than straight legs (plus, you may find this second attempt at that leg positioning a bit more attainable, especially now that you’ve attempted it once!) but feel free to play around with whatever leg variation feels good to you. To enter this pose, start by planting your right forearm down, and your left palm shoulder-width away from your right elbow (not in line with your other palm – that vastly changes the balance + muscular engagement here). You’ll really want to push into the left hand, finger bones spread wide, to engage through the left shoulder girdle, biceps, lats and serratus; once you’ve established your foundation, come up into your headstand however works for you (straddle, pike, tucking one knee in at a time etc.) Once you’ve extended the legs, begin to bend your knees and tuck them down, until you let the knees splay apart as you invite the soles of your feet together into a diamond shape. This is an awesome way to prepare to eventually try your #FrogPose in #Sirsasana; whenever we take a limb out of the equation in an inversion, it’s all about counterbalancing with your other limbs and moving slowly + mindfully; this variant is a wonderful way to build up to today’s pose safely and incrementally. Have fun with it – I can’t wait to see what you awesome yogis come up with for this one! Be sure to check in with my girl @rachely.wang for tomorrow’s modification!
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📸 : @tamalynannphotography

⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️ Day 9️⃣ of #BalanceKingdom with @cyogalab ↪️ #FireHydrantPose or #Padangusthasana variant ⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️ I spent about three months a couple of years ago trying to figure out the name of this pose with no information except what it looked like; let me tell you, that was no easy feat! (Some searches I tried: “Yoga pose big toe grab leg out looks like peeing,” “Big toe bind glute workout inner thigh stretch,” “Pose like Padangusthasana with foot hovering”…. You get the idea.) Like that seemingly endless string of Google searches, this pose is no walk in the park, but it is a fantastic way to get strong in your legs for postures like today’s #Vasisthasana, and to unlock some challenging inversion transitions like #Pikes and #StraddlePresses. Start standing in #Padangusthasana, feet hips width, grabbing big toes with peace fingers and thumbs, and pull your elbows wide into the forward fold. After holding for several breaths, inhale to lift halfway up – chest forwards, butt back – and keep a hold of your left big toe while cupping your right hand a few inches ahead of and outside of your right pinky toe. (You can also flatten your palm on a block.) Transfer the weight into your right foot, and hover your left foot off the ground. You might stay here, or extend the left leg diagonally out to the side; hold for several breaths, and be sure to practice both sides. To make it even harder, you might try keeping the bind around both big toes and completing the full movement. Keep up the amazing work, yogis!!
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📸 : @tamalynannphotography

Let go or be dragged. -Lao Tzu
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Last chance to practice with me for a couple of weeks (off to a wedding and then a rafting trip in the Grand Canyon 😆):
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5.00p Flow 60, and
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7.00p Restorative Meditation, both @align_yoga_studio. All levels welcome!
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We'll be flowing into some juicy overhead backbends, and restoring with a mix of calming yin poses and soothing back-body opening. Punctuated with a long, delicious Yoga Nidra.
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See you on your mat!
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📸 : @kerryjones12

⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️ Day 7️⃣ of #BalanceKingdom with @cyogalab ↪️ #ArdhaPadmasana in #Navasana or #HalfLotusBoatPose ⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️ Today’s main pose is one of the hardest warmup poses for me in my personal practice; it always makes my knees and ankles ache, and feels like a bit too “sharp” of a stretch on my inner thighs to really relax into. If you and your achy joints smell what I’m stepping in here 💩👣, then I encourage you to choose this variation, or really any #HalfLotus of #FullLotus variant, instead! If you’ve ever held #Lotus for longer than a few breaths, you know that it quickly turns into a pretty intense outer ankle stretch the longer you stay.
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Start seated, and fold one leg into a half lotus just like you would for #ardhabaddhapadmapaschimottanasana . Be sure to #floint your lotus foot – point your foot, and then flex the toes back – as you work the pinky side of your foot as high into the opposite hip crease as possible. Note: You should not feel this at all in your knee, so if you do, back off a bit, or even try folding a towel in behind your bent knee. Once your lotus leg is secure, bend your free leg into your chest, and then re-extend the leg into #Navasana or #BoatPose, keeping your abdominal wall strongly engaged, hip flexors active. Feel free to grab your foot, your shin, or anywhere along the lower leg; to add even more of a challenge, you might bind both of your big toes, just like in the forward fold variation. This is quite the wobbly posture, and it was pretty challenging to get this shot looking relatively straight – today’s picture made possible by my amazing yogi friend + photographer @tamalynannphotography and the magic of shutter speed! 😜📸

Back to the grind after the long weekend... Practice with me today:
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12.30p Deep Yoga @justbeyoga
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5.00p Yin/Restorative Nidra +
7.00p Power Hour, both @umeyogaoakland
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See you on your mat!

⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️ Day 5️⃣ of #BalanceKingdom with @cyogalab ↪️ #RevolvedTriangle or #ParivrttaTrikonasana ⚖️👑🤸🏻‍♀️ This pose may be relatively simple, but don't be fooled – I’m pretty sure this is the least stable way possible to stand with three points of contact on the floor, especially if you decide to move your gaze up. This pose is a fantastic way to stretch and warm up your outer hips and IT band/TFL (the muscle on top of your IT band) as well as your hamstrings, which is incredibly helpful for today’s #SkaterPose. Make sure to warm up your hamstrings and get a few twists in before attempting this variation. Start in a #PyramidPose or #Parsvattonasana stance; right foot forward, left foot back with the foot turned out 45°, feet in two lanes of traffic. Plant your left hand on either side of the right foot – feel free to use a block or tent your fingertips as needed – and, pushing into the ground to create a twisting pivot point, peel your right arm open towards the sky. Eventually your arms will stack one on top of the other.
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One thing to note when twisting is that there is always a “seat” of the pose, which is the stable base in your spine (usually either shoulders or hips) where the twist originates. When standing, that “seat” is almost always your, well, seat! So be sure to square the pelvis by hugging the right hip back and sliding the outer left hip forwards to create a deep hamstring stretch, and rotate your chest open towards the sky. Feel free to keep your gaze down, to the side, or up – it’s helpful to use “drsti checkpoints” as you work on the lifting the gaze, instead of immediately whipping your gaze skyward. Keep up the good work, yogis! All these early poses are great preparation for what’s to come later in the month!
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📸: @tamalynannphotography

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