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Long Island Yoga Association
Fall Satsang
In This Issue
Yoga and Health
Asana Column
Thought for Today
October 2012

Greetings everyone,


Let me begin by expressing our gratitude to Peter Jackson, a long time member, who has donated a new sign and banner for LIYA. Thank you Peter for your generous gift!


Our September workshop was amazing, presented by Theresa Gaenzle and the feedback has been fantastic. Our survey had great results, over 50% of our membership participated and we are paying attention to your needs. We will continue to implement some of your suggestions.


The 2013 membership registration is now open for new members. Anyone registering between now and the December workshop will be eligible to attend the holiday lunch and pay the member price for the workshops. Please spread the words to your friends and help the LIYA community grow. The Google group has been set up, please accept the invitation and let's start sharing!


Our December workshop is our Holiday luncheon and the hours change, it will be from 10:00am to 3:00pm. The schedule for workshops is as follows:


October - Michael Aronoff

November - Marianne Mitsinikos

December - Arlene Lucas (Holiday Luncheon)

January - Jennifer Brilliant

February - Christopher Hildebrandt

March - Theresa Rowland


A preview of the indie film One Track Heart: The story of Krishna Das, the world-renowned chant master and spiritual leader will be shown on Saturday October 27, 2012 at 1:00pm at the Roslyn Clearview Cinema. Krishna Das will be at the screening for Q&A.   As a LIYA member you will be extended a discount on the film, tickets will be $10.00 (instead of $12) just use the code YOGA2012.


Hope you enjoy the great articles that we have this quarter, if you have an article or thoughts you would like to share please submit to longislandyogaassociation@yahoo.com for review.  


Keep your light shinning!


Roxana C. Lucero


Long Island Yoga Association


Yoga and Health  
by Theresa Venezia, RYT 500, ECRYT
What to Do This Fall to Ensure a Healthy Winter

Everyone wants to get through the winter cold and flu-free, but each year as you are sitting in the middle of a group of people coughing and sneezing it seems increasingly difficult. As it turns out, there are some really simple things you can do this fall to help improve your chances of staying healthy through the winter. 


Arguably, one of the easiest things you can do to improve your health by leaps and bounds is to begin eating seasonally. What does this mean? It means eating what grows in your area at that time of year. This is nature's way of giving us exactly what we need to keep us healthy and prepared for the season ahead.


Preparing for cold and flu season actually begins in the spring, when berries, sprouts, and dandelion root are prevalent in our eco-system. These foods are all detoxifying and help to remove the mucous that has built up over the winter months throughout the body. To the extent that we detoxify in the spring, is as mucous-free as we will start out in the winter. Think of this process as it appeared in nature this year. We had a very mild winter, so the insect populations didn't diminish, as they normally would. Instead, they survived and proliferated during the winter months. This made for a very buggy summer. Likewise, if we skip the detoxifying foods in the spring, the mucous in our system stays and increases as the colder weather begins. 


For those of you who might have missed the berries and sprouts this year, THERE IS HOPE! Fall gives us another chance.  

You see, the key is to align your body with nature as much as possible. This is what the ancient science of Ayurveda (the sister science of Yoga) encourages us to do. According to Ayurveda, fall is a Vata season, which means that it is  windy, cool, and dry. You can see the evidence  as the temperature begins to drop and your skin begins to dry out. Following logic,  you would want to eat the foods that nature provides to counter this phenomenon inside your body. We strive to create warmth inside and it gets cooler outside. 


Here are some tips to help balance vata in the fall:

-Start the day with a grounding breakfast such as oatmeal with nuts, grains, or quinoa.

-Eat root vegetables such as carrots, turnips, beets, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, fall and winter squash.

-Eat warm, nourishing, freshly cooked soups and other foods. 

-Increase fat and oil intake.

-Flavor foods with sweet, sour, and salty tastes.

-Incorporate warming spices like cumin, coriander, cardamom, black pepper, cinnamon, and ginger.

-Limit raw, cold foods such as salad and raw vegetables. 

-Avoid cold beverages, caffeine and other stimulants.

-Remember to include leafy greens into your diet daily year-round for respiratory health.


As far as asana in the fall, it is best to focus on the grounding, stabilizing, and strengthening poses to pacify vata. These include, but are not limited to Warriors 1 and 3, Tree Pose, and Chair Pose. Be sure to also incorporate poses that calm the nervous system, such as child's pose, forward bend, and corpse pose. Throughout your fall yoga practice, try to keep your breathing slow and rhythmic.


Just a word about Vitamin D, since it is a question I get asked all of the time. There is no vegan version of Vitamin D supplement that works with the human system. The only version that can be utilized by our bodies is Vitamin D3, which is always an animal product. Those with packaging that says it is vegetarian, are still using by-products of living organisms. The absolute best way to get Vitamin D year round is to go out in the sun-15 minutes early in the morning, and 15 minutes in the evening each day is your best bet. Remember that the sunlight has to actually touch your skin in order for your body to absorb Vitamin D. If taking a supplement, the body assimilates Vitamin D best in the afternoon, when the sun would be strongest on your skin.


If you take nothing else with you from this article, please remember this: The earth supports what the body needs. What grows naturally in our area in any given season is what we need to be eating at that time of year for optimal health. Now go forth and eat, drink, be warm and healthy. If you have any leftovers, or if you come up with a great fall recipe, stop by healthyvibrantyou.com to let us all know!


Theresa Venezia is a Health Coach, RYT-500, ECRYT, Energy Worker and Spiritual Teacher. She works with individuals and groups to empower people to take their healing into their own hands. Her website is HealthyVibrantYou.com
Mention LIYA for a free health history consultation.  
by Ellen Stout
RYT 500

Meditation is the ripe fruit of asana practice and is itself a practice of gratitude and joy. Share this special meditation written just for Satsang with those you teach, those you love and especially yourself. Let your heart light shine, your eyes to become soft and your thoughts to slow as you enjoy this beautiful journey.


Sit comfortably on a chair or bolster, dim the lights, light incense, play soft music, do whatever you need to become comfortable. Begin to become aware of your breath, the coolness as it enters your nostrils, follow the path it takes to the bottom of your lungs and its return journey up and slowly back out, warm, spent. Repeat this exercise a few more times, feeling yourself begin to relax. As you begin to relax more and more, allow any outside sounds and errant thoughts to just fall away. With your next inhale, as you relax deeper and deeper, begin to imagine comforting warmth as if a soft blanket has been placed around your body, a mothers' lap to fold into, and feel yourself begin to relax more and more.


Meditation is the gentle caress of your heart around your daily thoughts. Gently surrounding those thoughts with beautiful light imagine them lifting and releasing out into the universe, leaving you feeling lighter and freer. Breathing deeply, relaxing deeper and deeper, feeling yourself wading into the stillness of your own beautiful, sacred heart. Imagine in the center of this magnificent place of peace, this joyful, gracious heart, imagine bringing more love, joy and abundance into your life. Breathe in love, letting it fill you, exciting every cell in your body. Breathe in joy and imagine it flowing through you, filling you to overflow. Breathe in abundance, in all spiritual and personal matters, imagining what that would look like for you in your everyday life.


As you spend a few moments breathing in love, joy and abundance, feel yourself becoming lighter and freer, imagine that you can return to this beautiful, sacred place at any time, simply by thinking of it, your own beautiful, expansive sacred heart. As you take a few deep breaths, begin to become aware of the room around you, the seat beneath you, and when you're ready allow your eyes to gently open, feeling relaxed, renewed, joyful and free.



Asana Column
by Jeff Logan


(Extended Hand to Big Toe)


  Big toe

Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana is an "eka pada" or "one legged" standing pose that requires elasticity and steadiness.

To first learn the pose, use a wall for support. Stand in Tadasana (Mountain pose) facing a wall about one leg's length from it. Keeping your left leg firm and steady, bend your right leg and loop a short belt around the right foot near the ball mound. Keeping hold of the belt, continue to stand tall and extend the right leg to the wall in line with the right hip (or slightly higher). Place the left hand on your left hip. Keep the hips, chest and shoulders square with the wall and, without disturbing the position of the right foot, descend the top of the right leg down so the hips remain level. Also firm the outer left thigh in to keep that leg secure.  Hold the pose for 30 seconds to 1minute and then return to Tadasana and repeat on the left side.
Once you understand the basic alignment and actions of this asana you can attempt it in the middle of the room holding the big toe as shown in the illustration.

When you gain steadiness in your posture you gain steadiness in your mind. According to the Bhagavad-Gita, it is this equipoise that allows one to see all of life's aspects evenly.


Thought for Today
by Cathy Fizzinoglia 

Inhale extend
exhale fold,
chin to shin 
nose to toes,
navel to spine
heart to sole.
Engaging bandhas
one two three 
ujai breathing 
deep and slow.
Crown to the ground 
while upside down 
and when practicing
the art of backward bends.
Steady now, in the flow,
I smile and align 
with the divine.