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In This Issue
Picnic Table Yoga
Meet Anne Simmons
Summer Term
Summer Special Focus Classes
Anatomy Awareness in Asana
Portland, Oregon
August 8 - 12, 2011 with Julie Gudmestad

For more information and to download a registration form click here


Yoga Journal Conference - Grand Geneva, July 7 - 11

for details click here  

Register now for the Yoga Journal Conference: Midwest! Yoga Journal returns to Lake Geneva, WI to bring you 5 days of rejuvenating practice with 100+ classes and 30+ master teachers. Bring the family and enjoy our special events including our free family yoga class, morning walking meditation, keynotes, LUNAFEST Film Festival, and more!  


Are you interested in a midwest yoga vacation this summer? Consider taking some classes with Julie Gudmestad at the YJ Conference in Grand Geneva, Wisconsin.  


Her courses include: Anatomy for Beginners; Arm Balances: Tips and Tricks; Core Strengthening; Psoas and the Hip Flexors; and Muscle Imbalances and Back Pain.



"I have been taking yoga classes from several different instructors at Gudmestad Yoga Studio since 2004. All the instructors are fabulous. They all play close attention to the needs of each student to ensure an appropriate class level and safe practice for each student. The studio is extremely well run and Julie's wonderful inspiration and leadership is evident in every aspect of the studio. I can't recommend it highly enough."  



Yoga International Article
By Julie Gudmestad

Read Julie's debut article in the current issue of this well respected magazine. "Asana Solutions: The Elusive Psoas"


Welcome Terry!

We are happy that Terry Waddell has joined our teaching staff. She comes to us with several years teaching experience. If you haven't already experienced one of her classes, plan on dropping in to some of her beginning and adv. beginning classes this summer.

To learn more about Terry click here


Registration for Fall 2011 Term

Level 1 and Ath 1 registration for classes begins Wednesday, August 24th at 9am. Please call (503) 223-8157 to sign up for the 11 week term starting September 26th.

Laila's Trip to Nepal

I had the most wonderful opportunity to travel to Nepal (October 2010) and go trekking with a high school friend who spoke Nepalese, as she lived there while in the Peace Corps. Click here to see some pictures of the journey around Manaslu, the 8th highest mountain in the world.

Gudmestad Yoga

Summer Quarterly Newsletter


Hopefully, by the time you receive this newsletter, our much anticipated summer will have finally arrived! And while you are enjoying the fruits of Oregon's early summer --fresh strawberries, anyone?-- I will be touring and teaching in Europe. My stops this year include Sweden, Finland, and London, England, plus a week in Boston on the way home. In previous travels I've made wonderful friends in Scandinavia and England, so I look forward to seeing familiar faces as well as meeting new students in my workshops there. 


As you make your summer plans, don't forget to schedule some yoga during those long summer days. Even a few minutes practice can help you slow down, savor summer's beauty, and be fully present with loved ones during those precious summer vacations. To help keep your practice in tune, we have our usual summer weekly drop-in classes, plus an exciting array of special focus classes to help you learn some new tricks, deepen your practice, or make progress in challenging aspects of your practice.


As always, if you have any questions, comments or suggestions, feel free to contact us.




Julie Gudmestad


Picnic Table Yoga

When summer finally arrives in the Pacific Northwest, it's easy to get totally absorbed in outdoor activities. Whether you're gardening, hiking, camping, or cycling, your summer enjoyment will be enhanced by doing some yoga. Don't allow your practice to slip away because you're away from home or off your usual weekly schedule, or just can't bear to drag yourself inside four walls to your waiting yoga mat.


Instead, you can adapt your practice to the situation at hand. After all, the flexibility we learn in yoga isn't just about stretching muscles, it's also about being flexible in time, space, and frame of mind. Take a break from your activity, and look around for an appealing outdoor yoga spot. Out in the garden, set down your trowel for a few minutes to savor the vitality all around you. If you're hiking, running or cycling, stop for a stretch break.


Here's a favorite garden stretch: sit on the ground with your mid-back up against the edge of your garden bench. Keep your knees bent, hold the base of your skull in your interlaced fingers, and lean back to open your chest. The edge of the seat acts like a fulcrum to take the slump out of your spine, and as your lungs open, take a few slow, life-affirming breaths. If you're looking up at blue sky through tree branches, all the better.


While hiking or cycling, a stretch break can help refresh your legs. Put your heel up on a fence rail, fallen log, or even your bike's top tube to stretch the back of your leg in a variation of the yoga pose Utthita Hasta Padangustasana. Keep your foot pointing straight up, and stand tall rather than bending over your leg (if you don't have a stretch, put your foot on a higher ledge). You can do this pose facing your leg, or turn sideways to add stretch to the inner thigh.


If you happen to have a picnic table at a park or campsite, you're really in luck. You can do both the previous poses using the bench, as well as a Downward Facing Dog variation with your palms down on the bench. Some of us have also been known to roll out our traveling yoga mat on the table itself, and from there enjoyed a full yoga practice while drinking in a lovely vista of lake, canyon or forest.


Wherever you find yourself this summer, I hope you'll exercise a little creativity in your practice. We'd love to hear about your discoveries, and especially love to see photos of yoga in wonderful places. And remember, while it's not as dramatic as headstand on a picnic table, just pausing to breathe and be thankful counts as yoga practice.  


If you found this yoga tip informative and yearn for more in depth articles about anatomy and yoga written by Julie, click here 

What you may not know about us...
All of our yoga teachers lead interesting lives. And it's occurred to us that you may enjoy knowing a little bit more about some of the cool things they're involved in outside the yoga studio.

Meet Anne Simmons. anne apron photoYou know that she teaches classes here Wednesday and Thursday evenings. You may also know that she's a practicing pediatric physical therapist and, along with her husband, Steve, has 3 grown children - 2 daughters living on opposite Canadian coasts and a son in Northern California. Oldest daughter Meghan has a MSW and a private counseling practice in Ottawa; Lindsay is a speech therapist in Haida Gwaii, Queen Charlotte Islands; and Geoff is in a baking program learning to make artisan breads in Oakland, CA.

Always an adventurer and never afraid of a challenge, you probably won't be surprised to learn that, in the '80s, she and Steve raised their brood living in a cabin with no running water in the Queen Charlottes, British Columbia, where Steve practiced dentistry.

trufflesBut there's more to our Anne! Here's what you may not know... That she's the co owner of an organic chocolate factory in Belize. Or that she makes extremely yummy organic truffles that she sells through her business -  Chocolat Lily named after a wildflower that grows in the Columbia Gorge.

Anne is a graduate of the Ecole Chocolat School in Vancouver, BC, where she studied the art of chocolatiering. And while she finds creating hand made chocolates fulfilling, she was also searching for deeper meaning associated with her new found passion - a connection to the farmers that grow cacao - and dreamed of a relationship with the people that process that cacao into the chocolate that she then transforms into her truffles.

chocolate factoryAnd so, several years ago, she became a founding co-owner of Cotton Tree Chocolate, an organic chocolate factory in Punta Gorda, Belize. Anne is happy to share that her small factory employs 4 women - 3 of whom are young, single Belizean mothers, each of whom proudly calls this their first job.

And, the ever-hopeful Anne looks forward to the day when her truffle making business, Chocolat Lily, begins to turn a profit, so she can donate a percentage back to the organic cacoa farmers in Belize.

And, if all of this is not enough to keep our renaissance woman busy, she's also a beekeeper and an experienced shroomer (she knows some secret wooded coastal havens - but don't ask, cause they are secret! Although she has been known to share some of her chanterelles if you ask nicely...).

Anne, a member of the Mazamas hiking club, professes to love the sun and is always in search of it. She especially enjoys backpacking trips with her adult kids these days. "Being outdoors does for me what yoga does - both help keep my busy brain engaged."

Even though Anne has so many diverse interests and passions, she professes to be shy and uncomfortable in the spotlight - and so finds teaching yoga to be one of her biggest challenges. She finds that teaching yoga is much like doing yoga - because it demands her complete attention be focused on the asanas. And while she admits to never uttering a peep in class to her own teachers, preferring instead to hang in the back of the studio, she absolutely loves it when her students pipe up and engage her. But be forewarned, if you do so, you just may unleash some of her downright wittiness.


Summer Term Begins Soon!
We embrace the casualness of summer here at Gudmestad Yoga Studio by breaking from our "sign up for a whole term" system and shifting instead to offering a totally drop in schedule from June through the 3rd week of September. Summer punch cards are available, or simply pay as you go. For an explanation of how summer works around here and our summer schedule click here.


Summer Special Focus Classes

We asked our students for suggestions for future Special Focus Topics and WOW, were they creative! Of course our teachers had some exciting ideas of their own as well. The ideas just kept flowing and before we knew it, we had scheduled 16 Special Focus Classes this summer. For complete description of classes and to download a registration form click here As always, these classes need to be pre-registered for, and have been known to fill quickly - so don't delay. We hope you find what you're looking for! 


Yoga for Golfers                  

Thursday, June 2nd           6-8 pm      Laila


"Come learn how to improve both physical and mental aspects of your game." 




Home Practice for levels 2-3                  

Wednesday, June 8th               6-8 pm        Beth


"If it feels good - do it!"  





Restorative Yoga                            

Thursday, June 9th                 6-8 pm       Laila


"Make time for yourself to relax and renew - you deserve it!" 





Home Practice for levels 3-4                 

Wednesday, June 15th            6-8 pm       Beth


"Practice brings progress."





Home Practice for levels 4 + 

Wednesday, June 29th            6-9pm      Julie


"Rotating practice sequences can really help you progress in your asana practice, expand your repertoire, and build a consistent, strong home practice." 



Know Your Glutes 

Wednesday, July 6th              6-8pm      Betsy

Wednesday, July 13th            6-8pm      Betsy


"Maximize you maximus, yet don't minimize your minimus." 




Body Mechanics  

Thursday, July 14th                  6-8pm      Laila


"Understand your body mechanics in daily life. Is it killing your back?" 




Psoas: Anatomy and Asana                  

Wednesday, July 20th             6-9 pm      Julie


"Come discover your mysterious psoas: where it is, what does it do, and how to access this important muscle in yoga poses." 




Salamba Sarvangasana

Wednesday, July 27th            6-8pm      Laila


"Learn what may be holding you back from the perfect shoulder stand - the queen of inversion poses!" 




Foam Roller Class

Wednesday, August 3rd               6-8pm       Betsy


"Rock and Roll you way to healthy muscles." 





Yoga and Your Neck: Relax and Realign

Wednesday, August 10th               6-8pm       Beth


"Realign and lose that pain in your neck." 





Prepare Your Shoulders for Inversions

Wednesday, August 17th               6-9pm       Julie


"Learn which poses are best to help build your shoulder strength and flexibility, with the goal of establishing a strong foundation for inversions." 



Restorative and Pranayama

Wednesday, August 24th               6-8pm       Julie


"Refresh your body, quiet your mind and steady your nervous system in this class. It is intended for students who have taken an intro to Pranayama class." 



Fun with Straps

Thursday, August 25th               6-8pm       Laila


"Strapping may be more fun than strapless!" 





Partner Yoga

Wednesday, September 14th               6-8pm       Laila


"No partner needed to sign up - you will find one here." 





Hard to believe, but summer is nearly here. After all the grey and wet, we're certainly looking forward to sun and heat and now we have a better understanding of how we can keep our bodies happy with some picnic table yoga. And we know, when you're in town, you'll be happy to come and go to the studio, taking drop in classes - trying new teachers, new days/times, and joining some of our many Special Focus Classes for some in-depth yoga study. Hope to see you often!



Nari Maidl
Yoga Coordinator
Gudmestad Yoga
Gudmestad Yoga Studio    3903 SW Kelly Avenue, Suite 210    Portland, OR  97239 

phone: 503 223 8157

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