The Secret To Sustainable Good Posture!

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Postural challenges are increasing as we have become a society of people living from our heads more often than not.

Think of it, even when you do yoga, you tend to let your educated mind decide what your body ought to do and how to move. In fact, you trust your yoga teacher more than your own whole-body intelligence.

So you micro-manage your body parts in an effort to reach what you THINK is the perfect pose expression. You micro-manage your shoulders and back to reach what you THINK is your best posture. But is it? Who knows whether it is or not?

Your teacher knows the way the pose is meant to look like, but does she know your body? Can she guess how your body is feeling as you are doing your pose? Only your whole body intelligence can.

There is a mechanism within you that is designed to handle your best balance, coordination, and posture. When you micro-manage your body, you prevent this mechanism to do its job. That is why pulling your shoulders back does not last and you find yourself slouching within minutes if not seconds.

Learning about that mechanism and how to activate it is the secret to clearing posture issues and to gain increased freedom from the consequences of poor posture: namely, neck, shoulders and back tension.

If you are interested in learning more, please join me and others for my FREE WEBINAR this weekend to give you an experience of this mechanism. For more info, click on the following link:

https://offthematyoga.lpages.co/free-live-interactive-webinar-04/

Cecile Raynor has been teaching the Alexander Technique for over 25 years out of which came her B.I.A. Process to assist yogis in enhancing their practice bypassing the intellect. She is also a Thai Yoga Massage Therapist and a Reiki Practitioner. Faculty at Akasha Yoga Teacher Training, she runs a 12 months Mastermind for Yoga Teachers with a Vision, and a 90 Day Virtual Program for trainees, new teachers and committed yoga practitioners interested in using their body more efficiently on and off the mat in a way not taught in regular training courses. She is currently writing a book on her personal and professional experience to be published this year.

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What Does it Really Mean to Work Smart Rather Than Hard?

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To work smart rather than hard to gain an efficient and safe yoga practice has become a common phrase yet, it is not always practiced in the way it was meant. And the way it was meant can be a challenge for modern yoga teachers and practitioners who have become obsessed with muscle engaging. However, engaging your muscles focusing on body parts is the reason you keep needing to stretch the same tension over and over. Ancient yogis’ strength came not from the size or firmness of their muscles but from the power of their mind over their body as a whole, over their energy!

Maybe it is time to learn to be strong using brain and bones and stop overworking your muscles. It is a more holistic and efficient approach. And it actually feels easier simply because gravity becomes your ally and you can work out smart instead of hard! The only thing you lose when you embrace this new paradigm is body stiffness, not strength.

You may want to check a humorous black and white 3-minute Rare Jujitsu footage posted by Andi Brooke to see what I mean! It shows a woman in the early nineteen hundred, dressed in her everyday outfit, using some Jujitsu maneuvers to prevent a few staged assaults. Although she is a petite non-muscular bodied woman, she handles this quite well using the strength of her skeleton and whole-body use. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kj15lvQhoSI

There is a way to practice yoga with this mindset and gain in efficiency and safety while still challenging yourself. If you are interested in learning more about this, sign up for my free or paid events by going to my blog site menu  or click on the following link to attend my FREE LIVE VIDEO WEBINAR: https://offthematyoga.lpages.co/free-live-interactive-webinar-04/

Why Is Muscle Engaging Not What It Is Cracked Up To Be When Practicing Yoga?

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Do you engage your muscles in an effort to control your skeleton when you do a mountain pose or a tree pose? If your answer is yes, what do you think the benefit of engaging your muscles in that way is? Do you think you are more stable? Or that you build up more strength? Is it even true? If you need that much engaging for a simple pose, how much do you use for a more challenging one? In the end, are you sure this common way of practicing yoga offers you optimal safety and best performance?

Have you ever tried to let your whole-body intelligence be more in charge so you no longer need to control your body parts that way? Or are you addicted to that tense feeling without which you believe you are not doing enough? Is that even true? What if you could stretch and strengthen without it?

There is a more holistic way to approach yoga practice, whether you are into gentle yoga or power yoga. It has to do with learning to practice in a way that is in line with your human design. It has to do with letting your whole-body intelligence be in the driver seat while your educated mind stays on the passenger seat by activating your postural mechanism. This is an unexplored dimension in the world of yoga and fitness and yet, it is a groundbreaking tool to promote optimal safety and best performance on and off the mat!

Practicing that way leads to optimal safety and highest performance with any style of yoga you enjoy. It has to do with activating your whole-body intelligence so you can follow its clear guidance anywhere, anytime.

Want to learn more? Come and join others to experience this for yourself on my Webinar this Sunday, November 5, 2017

Click on the link below to sign up!:)

https://offthematyoga.lpages.co/free-live-interactive-webinar-04/

Cecile Raynor has been teaching the Alexander Technique for over 25 years out of which came her B.I.A. Process to assist yogis in enhancing their practice bypassing the intellect. She is also a Thai Yoga Massage Therapist and a Reiki Practitioner. Faculty at Akasha Yoga Teacher Training, she runs a 12 months Mastermind for Yoga Teachers with a Vision, and a 90 Day Virtual Program for trainees, new teachers and committed yoga practitioners interested in using their body more efficiently on and off the mat in a way not taught in regular training courses. She is currently writing a book on her personal and professional experience to be published this year.

Easy Yoga Practice versus A Practice Handled with Ease!

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WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?

Beginners or people who have physical limitations need to start with an easy practice to avoid injury while still benefitting from a yoga practice. And that is common sense.

However, as a non-beginner or someone with no particular limitations, do you feel that the more you strengthen or stretch your body, the more beneficial your practice is? And if so, is it really true? How much stretching and strengthening do you actually need to live your daily life?

Have you ever considered that the best way to practice any style of yoga may be when every pose you do is good for every part of your body at all times?  Would that feel like the yogis in the drawing below? Probably not!:)

How would that feel like then?

You may have been instructed in a way that makes the suggestions below challenging. Yet, can you go beyond what you have been told to find out what agrees with your whole-body intelligence? Don’t even take my word for it. Play with these suggestions and see what develops! You may discover what it feels like to handle a challenging practice with ease, even in plank pose, chair pose or a vinyasa flow!

If you were to practice in a way that is good for every part of you, in every pose, maybe you would not compress the back of your neck so you could open your chest to a max? Maybe you would not overstretch your back just to touch your toes? Or maybe, you would not put yourself off balance just to challenge your quads in chair pose because you would know that keeping your weight evenly distributed on your feet is a way to cooperate with your whole-body intelligence?

What if you could still feel good and challenge yourself without such habits?

If you resonate with this way of thinking and you want to learn how to challenge yourself without flirting with injury promoting moves just because it feels good in the moment, you may enjoy attending my webinar on Sunday, October 29, 2017.

https://offthematyoga.lpages.co/free-live-interactive-webinar-04/

Cecile Raynor has been teaching the Alexander Technique for over 25 years out of which came her B.I.A. Process to assist yogis in enhancing their practice bypassing the intellect. She is also a Thai Yoga Massage Therapist and a Reiki Practitioner. Faculty at Akasha Yoga Teacher Training, she runs a 12 months Mastermind for Yoga Teachers with a Vision, and a 90 Day Virtual Program for trainees, new teachers and committed yoga practitioners interested in using their body more efficiently on and off the mat in a way not taught in regular training courses. She is currently writing a book on her personal and professional experience to be published this year 

Tree Pose, Yoga Practice & Flamingos!

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Biologists have long wondered how the flamingos can stand on one leg for so long. Researchers reported that these pink birds have a unique anatomy that makes their posture almost effortless. Whereas humans need some muscles activity to balance on one leg, the flamingos unusual skeletal and muscular systems essentially let gravity do all the work.

And that is a great lesson for us because, although we are not flamingos, we are reminded that the skeleton plays a major part in our standing up and our body strength even though we tend to assume that muscles are our sign of strength. The truth is that you need to let your skeleton and gravity do the bulk of the work for you! Yes, you can!

Muscle engaging is good when it is chosen by your whole-body intelligence to keep your skeleton in a pose. When your mind directs your muscles to control your skeleton, it actually creates excess tension rather than adding more strength or stability to a pose. It is like you are fighting with yourself and you actually trigger your stress mode even if only underground.

I have experienced this personally and professionally. This is why I am encouraging you all to revisit your “muscle obsession” which may not serve you as much as you think it does. Next time you are on the mat or involved in an activity, play with this idea that your mind’s intention of movement initiates your skeleton to make a move while your necessary muscle tension goes on for the ride in perfect harmony with the bones, keeping you feeling strong, fluid and light.

A tree pose is only a tree pose, no need to control every aspect of the movement to get there. Trust your whole-body intelligence to know how to find a place for your foot anywhere along your leg and to keep you grounded and expanded. No need to press and force anything to go anywhere it is not going willingly. When you do not engage your muscles as you go and stay into Tree Pose, just by standing relaxed on one foot with your arms extended up and out like branches, you are still building up the strength of your necessary muscle tension and bones. The only thing you are losing out on is Unnecessary Muscle Tension. Why would you want excess tension anyway?

When you do not muscle your way to go and stay into Tree Pose, you are still building up the strength of your necessary muscle tension and bones just by standing relaxed on one foot with your arms extended up and out like branches. The only thing you are losing out on is Unnecessary Muscle Tension also known as Stiffness. Why would you want to build up stiffness anyway?

Try this and let me know how it felt! And if you are a yoga teacher, teacher trainee, or a committed yoga student and you want to explore this work with my help, sign up for my Free Webinar this Saturday afternoon by clicking on this link: https://offthematyoga.lpages.co/free-live-interactive-webinar-04/

 

Cecile Raynor has been teaching the Alexander Technique for over 25 years out of which came her B.I.A. Process to assist yogis in enhancing their practice bypassing the intellect. She is also a Thai Yoga Massage Therapist and a Reiki Practitioner. Faculty at Akasha Yoga Teacher Training, she runs a 12 months Mastermind for Yoga Teachers with a Vision, and a 90 Day Virtual Program for trainees, new teachers and committed yoga practitioners interested in using their body more efficiently on and off the mat in a way not taught in regular training courses. She is currently writing a book on her personal and professional experience to be published this year with Bliss-life Press, San Diego California.

The Yoga Of Vulnerability!

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What is your relationship with feeling vulnerable? Does it make you go into freeze or fight mode? Or do you overcome the feeling most of the time? Do you have memories of childhood that come back to the surface in some situations even though the danger is no longer there? Would you like to learn the yoga of vulnerability so you can be more who you truly are so vulnerability has less of an interfering impact on you? This is what I have been working on with live videos although using my BIA Process to get me through it! I am feeling the fear and doing it anyway and am not there yet when it comes to Live FB videos!:)

This topic around vulnerability came to me since yesterday because of a 21-day challenge I chose to commit to. I had decided last new year’s eve that this year was supposed to be my year to become visually visible. I have become very visible with my writing over the last few years, partly my blog with 25 000 views to date and my weekly FB posts which are viewed by 3000 to 7000 people. And there is my incoming book which I still hope will get published this year if everything goes according to plan. But since my decision for 2017, I had only made baby steps to be more visually visible.

Yes, I do like to challenge myself and I also know I have cutting edge knowledge and experience that I am meant to share to an increasingly wide audience if I am want to bring about the impact my work could have. Only FB Live video were a bit too much I thought and I kept postponing telling myself my book came first.

Day One: https://www.facebook.com/cecile.raynor/videos/10209922694120100/

Now that I am in the final stage of it, I no longer have a choice if I want to be accountable to myself and I just jumped on this opportunity to join others in embracing this challenge even though I knew I would feel quite vulnerable at first. So far, I am two days into it. And although I am pretty confident in general and have been on TV and radio before feeling at ease, as my gut told me, going live did trigger some feeling of vulnerability even though I know intellectually that there is nothing to fear.

Have you done jumps of the sort? How did it work for you? 

Like most people, you probably don’t enjoy the feeling of vulnerability and for a good reason, it was designed as a warning sign to alert you that something is not safe in your environment so you become extra careful. Your stress mode gets turned on and everything shuts down to be in protective mode. Depending on your personality, you may feel like getting ready to fight or flee or you tend to freeze or try to appease the source of trouble when possible.

All this is perfectly normal and appropriate.


Day Two: https://www.facebook.com/CecileRaynorAlexanderTechniqueThaiYoga/videos/1428922337187848/

However, like most of us, you may have integrated this way of feeling not only when you are truly in danger but also when you perceive you are in danger even when you are not. Your body can’t tell the difference. It follows your mind perception. You are not alone if you avoid situations that make you feel vulnerable. Even when you know on some levels that you are not in a life and death situation, it just feels like it and that’s enough to recoil.

The truth is that most often than not, you are perfectly safe and you miss out on life for not choosing to feel the fear and do it anyway. Now, am not suggesting you ignore the feeling exactly. You can acknowledge it and have a talk with the part of you that feels that way. Yet you can also realize that not all of you feels that way and that you can follow the part of you that wants to be free from fear. That is the part you can choose to follow to reach more freedom from imagined fears.

So here it is in a nutshell why I had to take on this challenge. I have felt fear and did it anyway in other situations and it always turned out ok so am taking this to the next level for my benefit and the benefit of my tribe who gets to see me live and ask questions instead of only seeing a picture of me near my writing.

Besides, it is my true purpose to inspire and guide people to dance the joy of wholeness and that happens increasingly when we are freer from unfounded fears.

If you want to learn the process I use to make me do things I did not think I could do both on or off the mat, go to my blog site for my  Free Email Seminar  or other paid programs including private sessions locally or online:  https://offthematyogablog.com/

And if you are a yoga teacher, trainee or committed yoga practitioner, send me a message to see if you qualify for a free session with me.

Also, if you want to see me growing through this 21-day challenge and get inspired, go to my FB page: https://www.facebook.com/CecileRaynorAlexanderTechniqueThaiYoga/

Cecile Raynor has been teaching the Alexander Technique for over 25 years out of which came her B.I.A. Process to assist yogis in enhancing their practice bypassing the intellect. She is also a Thai Yoga Massage Therapist and a Reiki Practitioner. Faculty at Akasha Yoga Teacher Training, she runs a 12 months Mastermind for Yoga Teachers with a Vision, and a 90 Day Virtual Program for trainees, new teachers and committed yoga practitioners interested in using their body more efficiently on and off the mat in a way not taught in regular training courses. She is currently writing a book on her personal and professional experience to be published this year with Bliss-life Press, San Diego California.

 

IS STRETCHING YOUR NECK THE BEST WAY TO BE TENSION-FREE IN YOUR NECK?

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Stretching is the corner stone of modern fitness whether you go to yoga or at the gym. Yet is stretching the best way to be tension-free? Is stretching your neck the best way for your neck to be tension-free?

Wouldn’t you like to know? Well here it is!:)

Stretching is great but making the unconscious conscious is most helpful to gain sustainable results!

Neck tension is not due to texting or computer use, it is not due to sitting long hours on a chair either. Rather it is due to how you use yourself while texting, at the computer or sitting on a chair.

And these activities are affected by how you use yourself the rest of the time even doing simple movements such as looking right and left to cross a street, to check your environment or to check on your children running around.

If you are like most people, you are overusing your neck muscles to move your head instead of moving your head from the occipital joint at the top of the spine, or even higher for better results.

Whether you are on or off the mat, keep that awareness with you and notice how it changes your movement!

If you want to be tension-free in your neck or other places, you must prevent unknowingly building that tension by discovering unconscious habits that are feeding your level of tension. Then you can enjoy a whole body stretch just for fun instead of stretching the same tension over and over in various body parts.

Want to discover and unlearn these unconscious habits? Go to my blog site for my  Free Email Seminar  or other paid programs including private sessions locally or online:  https://offthematyogablog.com/

And if you are a yoga teacher, trainee or committed yoga practitioner, send me a message to see if you qualify for a free session with me.

Cecile Raynor has been teaching the Alexander Technique for over 25 years out of which came her B.I.A. Process to assist yogis enhance their practice bypassing the intellect. She is also a Thai Yoga Massage Therapist and a Reiki Practitioner. Faculty at Akasha Yoga Teacher Training, she runs a 12 months Mastermind for Yoga Teachers with a Vision, and a 90 Day Virtual Program for trainees, new teachers and committed yoga practitioners interested in using their body more efficiently on and off the mat in a way not taught in regular training courses. She is currently writing a book on her personal and professional experience to be published this year with Bliss-life Press, San Diego California.