May 13

Try these summer workouts to enhance healthy living

Have you been looking for a personal change model to follow? If so, then you may want to try changing the way that you eat. Healthy living is the first step toward making positive personal changes, and when you feel fit, you may find that the confidence you exude helps you in other aspects of your life. The summer is a good time to start getting more exercise, and you should take advantage of the beautiful weather to get more physical activity outdoors. 

For example, Prevention magazine recommends that in the summer you try kayaking, which is very fun and can burn an estimated 340 calories per hour. This exercise can help you strengthen your upper body. Also, going on a nice summer hike could burn 400 calories an hour and is a great way to get in touch with nature. 

WebMD spoke to Kelli Calabrese, M.S., an exercise physiologist, who said that in the summer, taking a simple walk by the shore can be a workout.

"Sand gives you the extra resistance that you wouldn't have on a treadmill or on asphalt," Calabrese told WebMD. "You can do it barefooted and you'll feel a great workout in your feet, shins, and calves." 

Mar 12

Yoga blows other personal change models away

The enthusiasts in our Georgia yoga classes sometimes ask us if we've tried other personal change models and, if we did, what we thought of them. They're often curious because they've delved into other personal improvement regimens themselves. And usually they agree with our answers: Yes, and yoga takes the cake!

You see, our mind-body system entails all the benefits of deep breathing, stretching, meditation, tai chi, qigong, acupressure and brain wave vibration without any of the pesky aches and pains that are associated with other regimens.

Even other types of yoga can't measure up to Dahn Yoga itself. Consider a book recently published by New York Times senior reporter William J. Broad. Called The Science of Yoga, the text describes some of the injuries that practitioners have suffered while doing vigorous, excessively gymnastic forms of holistic exercise.

At Dahn Yoga, that's not what we're about. Our community centers don't push heavy exercise or back-breaking stretches on students. Instead, our holistic routine centers around activities that relax the body and open up the mind.

That way, you can improve your mental, physical and spiritual well-being all at once.

Feb 12

Making personal changes? Start with yoga

For people who are at a fork in the road in their lives, it can be hard to choose a personal change model. Just think how many there are: inspirational books, self-help guides, holistic philosophies, community classes, exercise regimens, one-on-one learning and more! How do you decide which is best for you?

Well, with Dahn Yoga, you don't have to decide, since the mind-body regimen is a bit like all of these activities rolled up into one!

If you're making personal changes, you could hardly do better than joining your local Dahn Yoga community. That's because our sincere, friendly and committed members are all about integrating mental, emotional, physical and spiritual health into one holistic pursuit.

Think of it this way. If you're exercising, are you caring for your mind? No. When studying a philosophy, are you attending to your body? No. By reading a book, are you using your spirit? Probably not.

That's why Dahn Yoga combines all these activities and more! We offer a program that addresses every aspect of a person, from their social persona to their innermost identity.

Try a class! Before you know it, you'll have brought every facet of your life into a calm, blissful balance.

Jan 12

In the new year, yoga is great for making personal changes

Every New Year, tens of millions of Americans vow to eat better, get more sleep, venture outdoors, quit smoking or in some other way improve their lives a little bit. Unfortunately, many personal change modes that are based on New Year's resolutions don't last very long. This may be why one natural health expert recently recommended making personal changes through yoga.

Elaine Gavalas wrote an article for the Huffington Post explaining that more than anything else, people resolve each year to lose weight. And as you might expect, even the best-laid of such plans can go awry.

"Most weight loss [programs] are fads that offer short-term solutions to a long-term problem," Gavalas explained. "In contrast, yoga offers a positive change in lifestyle, where permanent weight loss and maintenance is a natural result of enjoyable yoga exercise and diet."

According to a recent survey, the top New Year's resolution of 2012 is to become more physically fit, followed closely by losing weight.

In order to actually follow through on such a resolution, it can be helpful to take up a holistic solution to your overall health, one that improves mental, physical and interpersonal well-being all at once.

You know what that means – yoga!

Nov 11

Yoga product line espouses selfish personal change model

Many enthusiasts take Atlanta yoga classes in order to relax, reflect and recuperate from a long day at work. Others enjoy the self healing regimen for its ability to improve strength and balance while providing simultaneous mental and emotional clarity. But who takes yoga as an espousal of personal selfishness?

Evidently, some do. According to a news report published by TIME Magazine, the yoga product manufacturer Lululemon Athletica has recently begun selling tote bags with the phrase "Who is John Galt?" printed in large letters on the side.

For those unfamiliar with the phrase, it is a recurring rhetorical question in Atlas Shrugged, a controversial 1957 novel written by Ayn Rand about the virtue of selfishness. (Lest you think we're misusing that last word, we direct you to her 1964 essay collection, The Virtue of Selfishness.)

You may be saying, "Wait, I thought yoga's personal change model was about selflessness!" If so, you're not alone. Thousands of unhappy responses have flooded the company's blog.

Toronto yoga instructor Sarah Kurchak told the Globe and Mail that the sentiment embodied by the quote runs contrary to what the holistic routine is all about – namely, interpersonal connections and the renunciation of materialism.

"It's a clash with yoga values," she told the newspaper. "That was the last straw."

Nov 11

NFL running back describes using yoga for making personal changes

Few people can say they've lived the kind of life that Ricky Williams has. At 34, the NFL pro football star is a running back for the Ravens and a licensed yoga instructor at the same time. The holistic system was a key element in his personal change model.

Why would Williams need to change? After all, he won the Heisman Trophy during his senior year of college, during which time he became (for awhile, anyway) the NCAA all-time leader in rushing yards. Williams was then drafted by the New Orleans Saints.

However, life isn't always so easy. Williams has admitted to suffering from severe anxiety and avoidance disorders, for which he at one time self-medicated with marijuana. This period of his life was difficult and almost cost him his career.

However, he found a simple method for making personal changes: yoga.

Today, Williams is a licensed yoga teacher. He regularly leads yoga classes, often donating all proceeds to charity, according to Baltimore Magazine.

He told the Yoga Journal that his very first class as a student changed his life.

"I was rushed with insight into my life and thought, 'Wow, this is powerful,'" Williams told the new source. "After that, I was sold and started going to [yoga] five to seven times a week."

Aug 11

Making personal changes through meditation is a time-honored tradition

“Where does self-discovery begin? Does it occur within, or can a person begin making personal changes unknowingly, spurred from without?” These questions are just one facet of the inner dialogue one might pursue during yoga meditation, a practice that has persisted in the U.S. for more than 150 years.

You may think of meditation as a trendy topic, something that only recently became popular in American yoga community centers or among practitioners of Zen. However, the history of inner contemplation in the Western world dates back to the Civil War at least.

In the middle of the 1800s, American thinkers like Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau and a group of open-minded individualists collectively called the Transcendentalists were using meditation and yoga-based personal change models to go on inner voyages.

The Transcendentalists believed in the primacy of nature. They felt that contemplating it could open doorways inside one’s mind, leading to growth, satisfaction and peace.

In his history volume Meditation and the Evolution of Cosmic Consciousness, author Don Ayre says this group was instrumental in popularizing meditation and dialectics in the U.S.

“[They] looked to meditation as a means of bridging the gap between their ongoing self-discovery and the social action needed to create a community of mutual openness and support,” Ayre states.

Since the 1800s, meditation has appeared in all sorts of Western texts. It makes a cameo of sorts in W. Somerset Maugham’s The Razor Edge, a seminal novel about the effects of Eastern thought on a disillusioned Western man.

“‘How could you stand it for tow years?’ cried Isabel.
“‘They passed like a flash. I’ve spent days that seemed to be unconscionably longer.’
“‘What did you do with yourself all the time?’
“‘I read. I took long walks. I went out in a boat on the lagoon. I meditated. Meditation is very hard work; after two or three hours of it you’re…exhausted.’”

This passage points to the discipline required for yoga meditation, but also to its ability to sharpen focus and lead to personal change.