SUMMER YOGA

*UPDATE! THE EVENT HAS BEEN MOVED TO WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 30TH. HOPE YOU ALL CAN MAKE IT. SAVE THE DATE 😉 !

Happy Thursday guys! This summer I have been trying to work out as much as possible and most recently got into yoga. FYI I am a total beginner at this and still working hard at it. Today’s post is extra special because I teamed up with Mikhaila, who is one of my best childhood friends, to talk all about yoga.

Mikhaila is an amazing yoga instructor and teaches a class every Wednesday night at Lakeshore Sport and Fitness in Lincoln Park. We recently teamed up to co-host a FREE Rooftop Vinyasa Yoga Class + a FREE glass of wine this Wednesday, August 9th.

Come celebrate summer, fun, and fitness! We will explore a core-centric yoga sequence, perfect for anyone looking to build core strength. It is also great for new moms looking to gain confidence, inspiration, and community. Also, no need to RSVP. Just let them know you are a guest of Mikhaila’s at the front desk and they will show you to the rooftop!

A mom of two herself, Mikhaila accredits yoga to helping her discover a sense of calm and a stronger, fitter body than ever before. Just like me, she can’t stand it when she hears the phrase ‘get your pre-baby body back,. Your body is beautiful and powerful and capable of doing amazing things!

Mikhaila is also sharing 5 Yoga Postures that are fantastic for helping to build Core Strength:

1. HIGH PLANK
Stack your wrist under your shoulders and lengthen your body horizontal to the floor with your toes curled under your heels. Pull your navel in to engage your core and avoid piking your hips up, or drooping down. Variations include coming to your knees; widen the distance between your feet; rotate to one side at a time for Side Plank; come to elbows for forearm plank if you have a wrist issue; raise an arm or a foot off the floor for a special challenge, or alternate both.

2. CHATURANGA- HIGH PLANK TO LOW PLANK
Basically a tricep push up. Keep your elbows in tight to your sides as you lower rather then bending out to the sides. Beginners lower to your knees to establish alignment. Try to maintain a nice long line from knees {or heels if on toes} through crown of the head rather than sticking your butt up.

3. BIRD DOG
Fire up the stabilizers/ core {abdominals, back muscles, and glutes} while working extensions and flexion of the spine and lengthening and strengthening the arms and legs. From Table Top reach your right arm forward and your left leg back creating as much length as you can. Then exhale and contract your core and pull your elbow to your knee. Inhale and extend back out. Repeat 3-5 times and then change sides.

4. BALANCING POSTURES/ TREE POSE/ STANDING BOW
Balancing Postures challenge stability while standing on one leg. Pro Tip: In tree pose, push your hands together firmly and your foot into your leg/your leg back into your foot {avoid the knee but find a contact point at the calf or the inner thigh}. This creates counter pressure to help with balance and creates elongation in the body.

5. SUPINE CORE
YES we do crunches in yoga because a healthy strong core is essential for getting into a lot of those crazy, advance poses. A move I came up with is called Charlie’s Angels Switch Kicks and it requires a decent hamstring flexibility, but if you can’t get the split legs, just bend the top leg as needed. Keep your lower back flat to your mat and lift your shoulders off the ground. Curl your chest up and over towards your top thigh. Reach your arms up and over toward the outside of the leg, interlace your fingers in a “steeple grip” and push your forearm firmly into the outer thigh. Hold for about 10 seconds and then quickly switch. Repeat 10x, varying the length of the hold to challenge your obliques.

See some of these positions below and and join us on Wednesday, August 9th for a fun night of yoga, wine, and friends!

Namaste!