What I’m lovin’ Wednesday: Power of Movement

Sunday is the big day! Me and tons of other yoga enthusiasts will be taking to our mats on Sunday, March 3 for Power of Movement in support of arthritis research.

I hold this event very near to my heart and my creaky joints. Many a time yoga has been my rock as I recover from an injury. The pain and weakness in my lower leg/ankle are with me daily, and a regular practice keeps me powerful, balanced, and a strong believer that anyone and everyone should do yoga.  Last year  I was fortunate to be named a Power of Movement Champion.


With events taking place across Canada, everyone has the chance to make a difference. I want you to join me in Calgary. Check out the link, register as an individual or join a team, and I’ll see you on your mat in a few days.

Here are the vitals:

What: Power of Movement Calgary
When: Sunday, March 3, 2013
Time: 11 a.m.
Where: Eau Claire Market
200 Barclay Parade SW
Calgary, AB
T2P 4R5
Who: Open to all, it is a family-friendly event.

If you can’t make it out, but would still like to help, please consider donating to my team: The Chakra Khans. Tax receipts are issued for any donation over $20.

Funds raised from this event go towards life changing research, which benefits more than 4.6 million Canadians that are living with arthritis and autoimmune conditions. For more information on Power of Movement, check out powerofmovement.ca.

Are you a yogi? Will you be taking part in Power of Movement? If so, which city?

Early bird.

I’m not an early-morning exerciser. I often get light headed and feel like I’m going to puke. Spin class on a semi-empty stomach might be the worst. A red-faced, sweaty mess is the last thing you want to see stumbling off a spin bike.

The one exception is yoga. Since it is supposed to be practiced on an empty stomach, I am always fine with an early morning class. The only downside is the early morning.

Last weekend, Rebecca convinced me that an 8 a.m. hot class at Yoga Passage was a great idea. I’m sure I was drunk when I agreed to go. Who would set their alarm for 7 a.m. on a Saturday? BY CHOICE!?

I also agreed because I love Yoga Passage. And because it is on Passport to Prana.

Located in the heart of the city, it is a quick walk from home. It’s on the second floor of a small brick building and has two studios with plenty of windows to watch the sun rise, or set depending on the time.

On Saturday I watched the sun rise from my mat – that’s one way to say hello to the Universe…flowing through a sweet sun salutation at dawn.

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I usually set up my mat over by that large canvas print of the bridge in the tree tops.

I don’t think I can express eloquently why I love it at Yoga Passage. It isn’t anything tangible, but more of a feeling. A sense of belonging in my practice and in the space. It feels like a yoga home.

When chatting with the ladies at Passport to Prana, I specifically pointed out Yoga Passage to try and add to the list of studios. I want more people in Calgary to experience this place.

And take Gord’s class; you won’t be sorry.

Are you a morning or evening exerciser? 

Hot, hot heat.

After making the statement that I needed to get back onto my mat last week, I fired up my new 2013 Passport to Prana card and hit a new studio.

With 17 studios on this year’s card, it will be an exciting challenge to schedule my classes. I really look forward to the good weather so I can take a class in Canmore while looking out into the mountains. (I just picture a huge second floor window looking out at the range.)

First studio to check off the list? Pure Hot Yoga. I have heard fantastic things about this studio, but the reviews and photos from their website don’t do it justice.

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This space is BEAUTIFUL!

I couldn’t get over the aesthetics of it and really hoped the class would hold up to the appearance. What a fantastically un-yogic things to say, but remember who’s typing here…

Screen Shot 2013-01-20 at 12.54.51 PMp.s. follow me on Twitter.

I selected a 75 min Warm Yin class, as my muscles were a bit sore and tight from a gym yoga class (ew) and spin class earlier in the week.

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The studio was simple with dark floors and a wall full of mirrors. I laid my mat out and gasped in hot air. It took a while for my lungs to adapt to the room, but soon enough I was breathing normally again. The Yin class is a unique style of yoga which works to increase flexibility and range of motion, mostly in the hips and lower back. Each pose is held between one and six minutes.

With a busy mind, and busy body, I often struggle with Yin or Restorative classes. I fidget, I squirm, I freak out inside my head. I know this is a fantastic lesson in patience for me, so I continue to challenge myself.

Thursday’s class was no different, I had a horrible time staying still and holding each posture. I struggled. I just kept wishing for savasana.

Ecstatic for many reasons when it finally rolled around, I was pleasantly surprised when the instructor places a cool, lemongrass-scented towel in my hand. I placed it over my eyes and spent as long as I could stretched out, with no separation between me and the floor.

For me, this was a brand new thing – I’ve had adjustments, and oils, and eye pillows, but never a cool, scented towel.

For everyone else, this is supposedly nothing new. When I bragged about it at work and on Twitter, I was met with “oh ya, I’ve had that at my studio.”

Either way, studios who do this: you are incredibly rad. Keep it up.

I’d go back to Pure Hot, but do wish it were closer to where I lived. I’m right in the core of the city, which isn’t common – Calgary is an outskirts city.

Another huge perk of Pure Hot is the amount of gentleman that take their classes. I counted no fewer than seven in the class before mine, and there were another five in the Warm Yin practice. I am happy to see more and more men doing yoga. Also, not bad on the eyes.

You can find the full list of Calgary and area studios, and my review of each as I go on my Passport to Prana page.

Have you heard about Passport to Prana? What do you look for in a studio?