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Exercising your feet keeps you on your toes

http://www.vancouversun.com

Lack of foot strength and flexibility can contribute to fallen arches, ankle, knee, hip and back problems, pain and injury.Our feet are the most used and abused part of our body. Our feet are our foundation; they are built for energy propulsion and shock absorption of the entire body, yet we give them so little attention. As you get back to our fitness programs, take care of your feet so you can achieve your goals. Training the feet means strengthening and creating mobility of the toes, arch and ankle through exercises such as spreading the toes, flexing and pointing the foot, toe curls and picking up objects with your feet.

Watch small children and notice how their toes are constantly moving. Without training, we lose mobility and strength in our feet. The foot loses its ability to function appropriately. Train your feet by using tools such as marbles, sticks and tennis balls to build strength and flexibility. Training your feet and lower leg muscles is important when building strength for any standing exercise.

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When Chocolate and Chakras Collide

http://www.nytimes.com

“I DON’T condemn/I don’t convert.”,The words of Ziggy Marley’s “Love Is My Religion” floated over 30 people lying on yoga mats in a steamy, dim loft above Madison Avenue on Friday. All had signed up for a strange new hybrid of physical activity: first an hour of vigorous, sweaty yoga, then a multicourse dinner of pasta, red wine and chocolate. As soon as the lights went up, dinner was served on the floor: an (almost) seamless transition designed to allow the yogis to taste, smell and digest in a heightened state of awareness. “It’s a little weird to sit on a sweaty yoga mat and eat soup,” said one woman, not pausing as she spooned up a smooth, cinnamon-spiked butternut squash purée from a bamboo bowl. “But people are used to doing some weird things in yoga class.” Joy Pierson, the chef at the nearby Candle Café, a vegan restaurant that supplied the meal, sat cross-legged at the front of the room, encouraging everyone to breathe in slowly. “Ssssmell the squassshhhh waaaafting through the air,” she intoned.

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Noel Coward with yoga pants

http://opinion.latimes.com

That's my review, and I'm sticking with it. The play opening next week at the Geffen Playhouse, ''The Female of the Species,'' is a Cowardian drawing-room comedy with a touch of Feydeau, updated and relocated to an upstate New York country house, and centered on Margot Mason, a celebrity feminist intellectual author played pitch-perfectly by Annette Bening. Margot has a touch of feminist pioneer Germaine Greer -- not surprising, because, like Greer, the playwright, Joanna Murray-Smith, is Australian. Bening makes Margot her own, not only as she stalks the stage but when she's shackled to her desk -- not merely figuratively, as all writers are, but quite literally. Sounds kinkier than it is. I saw a preview with some women friends who enjoyed it hugely, which made me wonder whether it was the stage equivalent of a chick flick, but I kept glancing around the theater. The men were laughing too, maybe more than the women.

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Inmates Gets Time Off Sentences for Taking Yoga

http://abcnews.go.com

Can downward dog transform murderers into model citizens?,That's the philosophy behind a program in India's state of Madhya Pradesh where prisons offer special yoga classes to the incarcerated. Instead of breaking rocks, they learn yoga positions, like the downward dog which is when a person gets on all fours and forms an inverted V by pushing their buttocks high into the air. For every one-to-three month program of yoga lessons completed, the prisoners receive a prison reduction of 15 days. Murderers and thieves learn to meditate and breathe from some of the world's best yoga instructors like Swami Ramdev. "So many of the prisoners have total life transformations and now they are very responsible citizens of the country and they become yoga teachers as well," said Ramdev through an interpreter. "They become the course of inspiration and respected citizens of their community."

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This yoga marathon is just the beginning

http://www.gazettetimes.com

"Close your eyes. Feeling the body. Consciously taking this seat, the seat in this moment ... Please bring hands together at the heart." Oregon State University instructor Sujita Sklenar opened a five-hour yogathon with an invitation and soothing words. "It's an incredibly wonderful time to listen to your own heartbeat, to feel your own breath, to go inside." Diffuse light from skylights and high-arched windows filled the room in the Women's Building Saturday morning. Bright orange, turquoise and green sticky mats formed three long rows, as 38 women and 10 men embarked on a five-hour stretch.
Yogathon (PAC 297) is one of 14,000 physical activity classes offered at Oregon State University each year; most are electives. It started as an experiment. Now it's a popular offering. "It's highly unusual to have a Saturday class," said Ann Asbell, director of the PAC program. "The fact that we can fill a class really speaks to the instructor. A lot of people teach yoga - she (Sklenar) lives yoga." "Yoga is truly a science of living. It is concerned with moral, physical, mental and emotional development," Sklenar said.

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Yoga, Meditation Helped Gisele During Pregnancy

http://wordgeist.com

Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bundchen kept herself in a good shape during pregnancy with yoga and meditation.To prepare, gorgeous Bundchen admitted that she did yoga and meditation, which resulted in her "very tranquil birth." "I kept myself in good shape during the whole pregnancy, eating healthily, meditating, and doing exercises," said Bundchen. Bundchen has been practicing yoga in the morning for an hour. Welcoming Bundchen's interest in yoga and meditation, well-known Hindu statesman Rajan Zed has urged her to explore the rich philosophical thought of Hinduism, which was the mother of yoga.

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