Yoga

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Yoga at Yogaya

Nancy Ivey grew up doing yoga with her mom in their living room.

Yoga practice carried her through two natural child birth deliveries and has guided her physical fitness routine throughout life.

Shortly after earning her undergraduate degree in Religious Studies at California State University Bakersfield, Nancy entered the yoga teacher training program at Center for Yoga in Los Angeles and completed the requirements to graduate as a certified yoga teacher by January 1994. She founded her home based studio, Yogaya, in the hills above the Kern River Valley, later that same year.

She has taught yoga for higher education since 1995 and presently teaches yoga for the Physical Education and Kinesiology department at California State University, Bakersfield.

Nancy has pursued yoga training with luminaries like Hindu yoga master, TKV Desikachar, Donna Farhi, Patricia Walden, Manuso Manos, Bo Forbes, Ana Forrest, Thomas Fortrel, Aadil Pavlikhova, Tim Miller, Doug and Dave Swenson, Tias Little, Dharma Mittra, Dr. Timothy McCall, Sianna Sherman, Roger Cole, Judith Lasater, Rod Stryker and many other teachers in various yoga-centered modalities along the way.

Alchemy of Awareness

In addition, Nancy studies meditation with Tibetan and Zen Buddhist masters and attends multiple day retreats with them learning how to disentangle oneself from one’s thoughts by tuning the attention onto the present moment. Practicing mindfulness strengthens it.

Calming mind and body everyday allows us to interrupt the unconscious flow of thoughts. During meditation we quieten our mind in a peaceful state and situate ourselves into a comfortably aligned posture, either seated or reclining. After centering our attention on the physical presence of the breath we start noticing the unconscious flow of numerous thoughts pervading our mind maybe driving us to feel, speak or act in certain harmful ways.

Noticing thoughts arising and then falling away as we focus on the present moment, breathing in and out, allows us to see that we are not only our thoughts. We can exercise some objectivity to our thoughts and choose to follow a thought or perhaps to interrupt an unconsidered nose dive into a negative thought and its correlated emotion. By challenging the habitual thought we reconsider a better thought; perhaps one more conducive to harmonious relations.

A Therapeutic Technology

Emphasizing an eclectic, alignment-based approach, Nancy regularly attends yoga therapy symposiums sponsored by the International Association of Yoga Therapists and has volunteered for the Yoga Journal conferences on the west coast. She augments her training with extensive research in hatha yoga anatomy and India’s traditional Ayurvedic medicine.

Nancy Ivey was my first yoga teacher about 13 years ago. She has a gentle soul and an enormous spirit. Her classes were amazing as she easily identified what each student needed physically, spiritually, and emotionally. She has such a broad and deep knowledge of yoga, I am honored to have been her student.” Jennifer Benesch, Texas

Check our Rates or Class page for rates and group class schedules. To check on class availability, call certified yoga teacher Nancy Ivey at 760.379.1587 or email shaktideva@mchsi.com. Visit our studio at 160 Ivey lane, Bodfish, CA 93205

 

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HOW YOGA REDUCES PAIN

A regular yoga practices reduces pain because you are stretching out tight muscles and joints and allowing fresh oxygen and blood into the tissues to both nourish and cleanse the region.

Stretch Your Back

Start your practice by lying on your back, with knees bent and hands on your belly. Begin breathing in and out through your nose starting with the exhale which you lengthen a little by counting two seconds at the end of the breath when you think it’s all done. This relaxes the breathing muscle (diaphragm).

Diaphragmatic Breathing

Now breathe into your belly by relaxing the abdominal muscles (your hands are there to help the belly relax and feel it swell with this deep abdominal inhalation). Keep breathing the same breath into the rib cage as you feel ribcage muscles stretch out to accomodate the increased capacity in the middle lobes of the lungs. Same breath moves into the collar bones as you fill the lungs to the apex. Then breathe all the way out through your nose until the end of the breath where you remember to count, “one thousand one one thousand two” to fully relax the diaphragm.

Ferris Wheel Breath

Don’t hold the breath either in or out, but visualize a ferris wheel. After starting with the lengthened exhale, as you are breathing in imagine riding up the ferris wheel while you fill your belly, ribs and collarbones with breath. The ferris wheel doesn’t stop and neither does the breath so transition into exhaling back down the ferrris wheel and lengthen it at the end. Then transition, breathing in, back up the ferris wheel.

Breath is Life

Relaxing your back perfectly straight on the floor opens up your heart and lungs. Encouraging respiratory efficiency and volume through the previous breathing techniques calms your mind and alleviates stress. As you do this, circulation increases throughout the spacious body bringing the life giving nutrients and cleansing the detritus out of our cells. This contributes to the life force, which yogis call prana. This simple technique renews the life force and prepares you for more asanas that utilize intelligent movement, based on good body mechanics, to further activate the pain reducing properties of yoga.