The Animal Instinct

So, maybe not that extreme of animal instincts, but on this Tone It Up Tuesday we’re going to talk about animal poses. Why? For two reasons: there’s a little something that will carry over from the meditations book to today and it’s almost Halloween….so “costumes”.

On Days 34-36 of the meditations book Gates takes a break between yamas and indirectly addresses the practice of yoga and the vibrancy of our youth. Many of us suffer from some kind of physical or mental blockage that prevents us from living the life we want to live. For me I have many different muscle and joint issues that some days hinder my progress forward on my fitness journey. However, I feel the aching that he talks about in my bones and muscles to run and play and jump like I did when I was young. He talks about flowing styles of yoga and that in a true yoga practice the posture (or our work there) is truly never ending.

Awhile back I talked a little about a book called the Science of Yoga by William Broad. In his book he talks about telomeres in our DNA. They are this little measuring stick that tells the body how old the cells are and how many more times they can replicate before they just die all together. There are people out there whom, through poor choices in life, have telomeres that are far older than their calendar age. Then, there is the miracle of yoga! Did you know that science has proven that doing yoga can actually stop the degeneration of these telomeres and in some instances even regrow them?! Thus, turning back the hands of time!

Don’t forget this happens this weekend if you live in a place that practices Daylight Savings.

Therefore, in an attempt to recapture some of our youth this Halloween season, here are a five of my favorite yoga poses named after animals. Remember that corresponding animal sounds SHOULD be included….scratch that; ARE MANDATORY during practice.

LION POSE
DOWNWARD FACING DOG POSE
COBRA POSE
COW POSE
CAT POSE
And a shout out for my friend Sarrah….please ladies, stop going out downtown on Halloween dressed up as “Sexy Kittens”.
If you have kids check out this yoga book with lots of acting out the animals (click on the photo below). It’s a great introduction to the practice for kids ages 0-5!


What are you going to be for Halloween? How do you celebrate your inner child?
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2 thoughts on “The Animal Instinct

  1. THIS- "science has proven that doing yoga can actually stop the degeneration of these telomeres and in some instances even regrow them" — there's a woman in my barre classes who looks like shes in her 40s (but i think she's probably in her late 50s early 60s) who is the most fit, vibrant person in class– she's all about yoga. So, I've seen proof of this statement.

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  2. I came to yoga in my late 20's and I feel like it's been a blessing in disguise! I hope to look young and vibrant for the rest of my life by practicing regularly. How do you like Barre? I haven't yet had the opportunity to try it.

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