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Michele Shirkey
Aug 08, 2022
In General Discussion
Shirkeyma@gmail.com and my cell is (607) 287-5767. If anyone wants a copy of the yoga circle I did let me know and I’ll send it to you. Congratulations and best wishes. Michele
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Michele Shirkey
Apr 18, 2022
In General Discussion
It’s interesting that there are so many options out there that are called yoga. I picked two very different classes to observe. One was at a small studio called the yoga garden and the other was a sunset yoga in a municipal park. The class at the yoga garden was listed as a vinyasa class and was taught by a young, 6x Ironman triathlon finisher. The sunset yoga was taught by an older wowan and she introduced the class as a gentle flow. Both were about an hour in length. the yoga garden was a quaint but small older building that was surrounded by a beautiful garden. The inside space accommodates only 15 per class. The room was gently lite and soft music was playing in the background. As students entered it became apparent that they were regulars as the teacher greeted them all by name and told them what props they needed. She stayed behind the counter checking people in until class was ready to start and then she took a seat on the mat that was in the front of the room. She greeted them as a group , asked them to settle in and close their eyes, focus on breath, and set an intention. Then she started what seemed like a never ending flow of poses. (about 45 minutes) She walked around the space while instructing. The class was definitely pretty advanced and followed her instructions very well ( like they had done this before) . She often stated when going into a pose to use their breath and to “ do what you need to do to make it your own”. The pacing was fast, and only once did I see her stop and quietly make a suggestion to a class member to try to widen their stance to help with their balance. At the end of the flow , the class was instructed to go to child’s pose and then roll to their backs for shivasana. She dimmed the lights, and turned the music a little louder. To come out of shivasana is instructed them to gently begin to move and then roll to their side Before coming to a seated position. She ended with a short poem about new beginnings which I assumed was the theme for the month. Students were very chatty at the end of class and some hung for awhile talking with one another and to the instructor. Then a new class was ready to enter! the sunset yoga was totally the opposite of the yoga garden. The class was taught in an open field at the town park. 31 people were in attendance. The teacher introduced herself and explained the format for the class. She also demonstrated some yoga poses the class would be doing explaining that when they got to those parts of the class people would know what she was talking about if they were a beginner. The class started standing with some gentle stretches- from bottom up. As she instructed she was also doing the stretches. (10 minutes) The stretches ended in a forward fold to a down dog to table. For the next half hour the class did what I would call a traditional yoga class. (Cat cow, puppy updog, down dog, plank, caturunga, , warrior 2, tree, chair, squat, figure 4 and bridge) The teacher instructed verbally and did what she was instructing. Some class members seemed to listen and do, while others watched her and did. She offered a few modifications verbally to the whole group ( wide stance down dog, knees down plank, and arm on lower back instead of up for triangle). It was a very slow paced class. After bridge, she invited the class to do legs up, and then settle in to shivasana in corpse pose. At this time she instructed then thru belly breathing which lead to 5 minutes of stillness. She asked them to roll to one side and then come to a seated position Hands at heart center. She thanked everyone for joining her and gave what she called her yoga blessing on all of them. Most people dispersed right away, a few hung and talked with one another. One person spoke with the teacher. Two very different classes and approaches!
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Michele Shirkey
Jan 23, 2022
In General Discussion
when I think of dharma it would probably be following your moral compass or perhaps your inner vision based on your background and knowledge . Our code that we live by and perhaps the higher power we confide in. I think I followed my dharma most recently in standing up for the immunocompromised residents in our park who wanted to be included in a condo owners meeting (about the 5 year plan of our park) but not in person and the board president refused to offer the meeting on zoom. I truly believed that they needed to be safe physically but at the same time included mentally in what was happening in the park. The board president would not request all would wear masks inside at the meeting or social distance nor would be look into offering zoom. To make a long story short, after much effort and sticking to what I believed was the right thing to do the meeting was live streamed.
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Michele Shirkey
Dec 14, 2021
In General Discussion
Merry Christmas yoga challenge! On the 12 days of Christmas my yoga teacher gave to me: 12 warrior 3’s 11 standing figure 4’s 10 half back poses 9 strong leg squats 8 forward bends 7 warrior ones 6 yoga goddess’s 5 bear hugs 4 eagle arms 3 warrior 2’s 2 camel poses and a partridge in a yoga tree wishing all of you a very happy holiday. Michele
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Michele Shirkey
Dec 08, 2021
In General Discussion
The water story  content media
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Michele Shirkey
Dec 01, 2021
In General Discussion
I’ve had fun trying these out and I have even added a few to my classes here in Florida! to reflect I chose the standing revolved triangle sequence. A bit challenging to get from some poses to another. I think I might add the same side leg drop before twisting it over to the other side and perhaps a warrior 2 after the high lunge , to extended side angle, triangle and then resolved to change it up a bit. Not so sure about the reclined side crow!! For seated poses I picked the quick hip opener- usually much needed for me and I felt that it provided a great stretch and relaxed my hips. I liked this sequence. To change it up I might consider doing the pigeon quad stretch instead of the lo lunge quad stretch. The last one I picked was the immune system booster- thought that I should do a lot of these in this crazy Covid time!! Liked the flow . Added supported head stand instead of unsupported. In addition I tried the yin yoga sequence (from the yin yoga handout) to lift your mood In my class yesterday. i did not tell the students it’s purpose but our December theme is “de stress ember” let it go! One of the students came up to me after class and said she was in a depressed mood before she came to class and really liked the order of things in class because it made her feel much more uplifted! Guess it worked!! Hope you guys are staying warm and enjoying your yoga practice. See you on Monday. Michele
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Michele Shirkey
Dec 01, 2021
In General Discussion
I think when you can spend more time on one area the Benefits to that area are greater. However it does not help in creating balance unless that area is more needy than the others. I found that when I just focused on my upper half that i was in need of doing the lower half as well to feel equal or just as good! MS
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Michele Shirkey
Oct 31, 2021
In General Discussion
I think most people have no idea what their mind is capable of doing. I think they go thru lifes phases and just forge ahead not giving it much thought or making connections or learning how to use their mind to find their true self. I think manas change based on the situations you are in, based on your experiences during the day, the relationships you have, your to do lists, and your worries. First thing in the morning my mind is usually focused on the day ahead. When I drive past the cemetary on my way to work my mind has memories of my parents who are buried there, when I find quiet time to meditate the thoughts that come and go are usually worries or cares about others in my life and also about my life mission. I think all of those thoughts in your mind do create your sense of identity.
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Michele Shirkey
Oct 31, 2021
In General Discussion
I think most people have no idea what their mind is capable of doing. I think they go thru lifes phases and just forge ahead not giving it much thought or making connections or learning how to use their mind to find their true self. I think manas change based on the situations you are in, based on your experiences during the day, the relationships you have, your to do lists, and your worries. First thing in the morning my mind is usually focused on the day ahead. When I drive past the cemetary on my way to work my mind has memories of my parents who are buried there, when I find quiet time to meditate the thoughts that come and go are usually worries or cares about others in my life and also about my life mission. I think all of those thoughts in your mind do create your sense of identity.
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Michele Shirkey
Oct 31, 2021
In General Discussion
I found the waking breath described in the book very similar to the practice I learned when on a kripalu retreat. Each morning over the PA system you would hear drumming and then recitations for tapping. When I’m feeling tired, stressed, congested I use these strategies and find that they really do make you feel better. A good morning stretch before each getting out of bed works wonders to get me going in the morning and I have a very short sequence 5 minute sequence of yoga stretches I do before leaving the bedroom. Helps those old stiff muscles and bones!! The other thing they at kripalu at night was a belly rub and a light finger tapping down your face like rain. Love them both.
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Michele Shirkey
Oct 19, 2021
In General Discussion
Have you heard of Dr Romie Mashtag? I had the opportunity today to listen to her speak. She is a neurologist who is evolution hospitalitys chief wellness officer and founder of the center for natural and integrative medicine. She is an advocate of mindfulness and her latest mission is to transform the brain health through breathing and meditation. you can google her, she has several TED talks ( most popular one is “the powerful secret of your breath) and a blog, and at drromie.com you can sign up for her newsletter that includes a compassion meditation and a sleep meditation this month. her keynote presentation that I listened to today was about brain strain , and how to create a brain shift . Excellent speaker with a wealth of knowledge. I’m planning on exploring her information further but thought I’d share so you can explore it too!
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Michele Shirkey
Oct 19, 2021
In General Discussion
On my way back from my work conference today I listened to Rachels Saturday morning session. Went to the recording on the hub connected my phone thru Bluetooth to my car radio and it was like listening to an audiobook! A great idea to use as a review while driving too!
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Michele Shirkey
Oct 09, 2021
In General Discussion
I find that using a strap in a pose gives you some support as well as the opportunity to perhaps go a little further in the pose. For example when you have a leg up with the strap on the bottom of the foot it gives support, and when you allow the leg to open to a wide angle that support allows you to hold the pose longer or go a little farther to your edge. Thoughts? I was thinking about tension and compassion today in the banana pose. As you stretch long down one side, there is a compression on the other side. But there could also be compression on the side that you are stretching when you can no longer tip to the side any further is it your muscles stopping you or perhaps your hip bone is hitting your thigh bone. Or maybe the shoulder bone is hitting the top of its socket. Hmmm- lots to think about!
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Michele Shirkey
Sep 29, 2021
A great yoga theme/focus for a fall class.  content media
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Michele Shirkey
Sep 29, 2021
In General Discussion
Lots of props for my candlelight yoga class tonight. Love when my students leave much more relaxed and at peace then when they came.
Props! content media
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Michele Shirkey
Sep 27, 2021
In General Discussion
Hub says 6:30 but I thought during last class we decided 6???? Thanks- Michele
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Michele Shirkey
Sep 18, 2021
4 way test from rotary international  content media
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Michele Shirkey
Sep 03, 2021
In General Discussion
Thats the yoga pose (extended hand to toe pose) along with Upavistha Konasana (seated wide angle pose) that I always find grips. My hamstrings are tight and I have a congenital hip issue so together those make my unique muscle pattern that grip in these poses. Using my breath into these areas does help. This is a picture of my yoga happy place. During Covid when I did yoga and exercise online I created this space with some rubber mats. The pictures on the wall were painted by my grandma so this is her memory gallery. A great place to workout! In the resources I will add a handout that I have used for a morning and evening yoga routine. Anyone find any interesting facts in our homework readings? I was reminded that muscles don't actually flex or extend - the joints do. So when we say flex your muscles we are really saying staying flex your joints and contract your muscles! Also loved that we all have unique muscle patterns and those patterns create integrated movement that are not the same for another person. Michele
Say Utthita hasta Padangusthasana  three times fast! content media
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Michele Shirkey
Aug 27, 2021
In General Discussion
Greeting yoga classmates! I have uploaded the chocolate zucchini recipe in the handouts section of our Hub. Enjoy!
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