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In This Issue

The 11-week fall term begins the week of September 21, 2015.
If you haven't enrolled yet, there are still a few openings available.
Call (503)223.8157 to register.
If you are enrolled, you should have received an email confirming your class choice recently.

For all of you Level 2 folks who find yourself on a waiting list, we have added a new Level 2 class on Thursday at 9:30am.
Rachel will be teaching this class.

Call (503)223.8157 to register.
Check out Julie's latest article in the October issue of Yoga Journal Titled: Body of knowledge, Understanding your hamstrings.

Create hamstring strength to prevent strain with yoga poses that develop the muscles and tendons.


Prairie Yoga, Lisle, IL

October 16 - 18, 2015


St. Paul Yoga Center, St. Paul, MN

October 24 - 25, 2015  


Yoga Northwest, Bellingham, WA

November 6 - 8, 2015 


Gudmestad Yoga

Fall Quarterly Newsletter

By the time you receive this newsletter, I'll be in the middle of my second European teaching tour this year. Much as I enjoy the travel---seeing the European sights and meeting the yoga students---there is one thing that I dread. I am very uncomfortable with the long hours of sitting on airplanes and trains.

While you may not spend days traveling each year, you may have to endure daily hours of sitting at work, in your commute, or during your recreational activities. Whether you're at work, at home, or on the road, what can you do to help ease the pain of too much sitting? It's always a good idea to stand up often: since we're no longer tied to the desk with plugged-in phones, you can get up and walk as you talk on your cell phone. And, I recommend that you parcel out your stand-up activities: don't save them up and do all of them on one break, but instead get up every half hour or so to do one item on your list.

In addition to getting out of your chair, how about incorporating some yoga into your day of sitting? Some people keep a mat nearby and actually do a few poses during a stretch break. In just five minutes, you can do a  downward facing dog and a lunge on each side---very refreshing! Or try lying over a rolled blanket for some chest opening and relaxing breathing, which counters the workday slump in just a two or three minutes.

However, there may be some days when you feel trapped in your chair, and continuity of focus demands that you stay put. For the briefest of stretch breaks, simply sit tall, stretch your arms overhead, and take a few breaths. Or, try the sitting twist described below---a wonderful chair variation of a classic yoga twist---followed by a chair child's pose.

Remember, wherever you are in the world, weaving a little yoga into your day will help you stay more relaxed, focused, and comfortable.
As always, if you have any questions, comments or suggestions, feel free to contact us.
Julie Gudmestad
Yoga Tip: Baradvajasana

The yoga pose Baradvajasana is traditionally done sitting on the floor with legs folded to one side of the hips. In this variation, we'll instead do it sitting on a chair, which is more comfortable for those with tight hips, and also makes it easier to sit tall.

For this variation, sit sideways on an armless chair. To maximize the twisting action, we do want to sit tall, with the spine uncompressed and positioned with its normal curves, so taller and stiffer people should put a folded blanket or two on the chair seat. Feet should be flat on the floor, so shorter people sometimes put that folded blanket under their feet instead.
Imagine a line drawn down from the top of your skull to the center spot between your sitting bones. Elongate your spine along that line, keeping your chin level. From your low back, slowly start to turn toward the back of the chair, imagining each vertebra rotating on the one below it as you work your way up that center line. Your head will be last to turn, and don't strain your eyes trying to see further behind you. Place your hands on the corners of the chair back, and very gently use one hand to pull and one hand to push to help deepen your twist. Hold this position and breathe smoothly for 30-60 seconds, then slowly come out of the twist and change sides.

After you've done both sides, try this chair version of child's pose to stretch both sides of your back. Sit on the front edge of your chair with your knees and feet wide apart. Roll forward to hang down between your legs, and be sure to let your neck relax and your head hang heavy. This is a big stretch for your back: if it's uncomfortable, simply bring your legs together and let your chest rest on your thighs. Breathe into your back body, feeling the back ribs expand, and as you exhale, picture your back muscles relaxing and lengthening. Stay for a few breaths, and when you're ready to come up, place your hands on or beside your knees and use your arms to push up.

After just a few minutes with these gentle stretches, you'll return to your task more relaxed and with a renewed sense of focus. 
If you found this yoga tip informative and yearn for more in-depth articles about anatomy and yoga written by Julie, click here 
John Schumacher Workshop

Studying yoga with John Schumacher in Bellingham, WA in August was an honor. John is one of only 13 advanced Iyengar Yoga certified teachers in the U.S. He is a legend in the Iyengar yoga community and for good reason. His teaching style is inviting and compassionate, yet challenging to both mind and body. I found myself seeing and experiencing the practice of yoga with new eyes. If you've ever considered stretching yourself (literally and figuratively) by attending a workshop like John's I would highly recommend it. You just may feel a shift within yourself that takes you deeper into your practice and deeper into your appreciation of how yoga enriches your life. I know it has for me. 

Stuart's Italy Retreat

This year's trip to Tuscany was another success. Just the right combination of yoga, compatible people, great weather and terrific Tuscan cuisine. Highlights included a surprise musical performance, wine tasting at local vineyards, a trip to the local market and a cooking lesson where we made our own Tiramisu and pasta - the results were molto delicioso.

Next year will be our 10th visit to Il Grande Prato and we hope that you can join us. The dates are May 22 to May 29, 2016. 

I Love this Time of Year!

The coming of the fall season is just yummy. We see the changes coming in small increments; the days gradually getting shorter, the first of the leaves beginning to shift from greens to yellows and oranges, the mornings cooler and crisper, and the fruits and vegetables that we have been nurturing all summer are now ripening.

Take time to honor the wonderful transition from summer to fall. Pull out your favorite cozy sweater, enjoy a fresh autumn meal, and celebrate!

I hope to see you all here at the studio this fall.  

Hope to see you soon!
Gudmestad Yoga Studio    3903 SW Kelly Avenue, Suite 210    Portland, OR  97239 

phone: 503 223 8157

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