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What’s your favourite way to build upper body strength? Mine is definitely the vinyasas between poses in the Ashtanga practice. . “Vinyasa” is what we often call the sequence of jumping back, chaturanga, up dog, down dog and jumping through to seated. There are 32 jump backs in the Ashtanga Primary Series alone! When I started focusing on these movements and performing them mindfully, and not rushing them, my strength grew quickly. . Of course it’s still a work in progress, and every day I work on building the strength to pick up & jump back without touching my toes to the mat. And always trying to slow everything way down. . Day 6 of #YOGISPERFECTLYIMPERFECT is all about the arms. . . 💕 Perfectly Imperfect Hosts 💕 @ashtangi_ali @dariasanchez @yogawithkrystin @supyogawithkarine . 🌹 Generous Sponsors 🌹 @yogisurprise @ajnawellbeing @omstarsofficial @vayumudra @stretchyogastudio @vibratehigher @sup_dog_atx . 💕 Pose list 💕 1. Legs • Journeying towards acceptance 2. Hips • Connecting with emotions 3. Core • Releasing the negative 4. Heart • Making space for love 5. Shoulders • Embracing ourselves 6. Arms • Building strength 7. Mind • Knowing your worth

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Flexibility is a blessing and a curse. . My hyper mobile shoulders are a perfect example of this. I don’t feel a stretch in my shoulders in gomukhasana, reverse prayer, puppy pose, or Marichyasana D. It just feels like a big nothing, which lets me focus on different aspects of those asanas. . On the other hand, building strength in these shoulders has been seriously hard work. Slowly but surely, I’m getting there! Pincha mayurasana is not in my practice yet, but I play around with it from time to time. . Don’t let the photo fool you though! ➡️ Swipe to see the video of my reality. . Day 5 of #YOGISPERFECTLYIMPERFECT is all about the shoulders. . . 💕 Perfectly Imperfect Hosts 💕 @ashtangi_ali @dariasanchez @yogawithkrystin @supyogawithkarine . 🌹 Generous Sponsors 🌹 @yogisurprise @ajnawellbeing @omstarsofficial @vayumudra @stretchyogastudio @vibratehigher @sup_dog_atx . 💕 Pose list 💕 1. Legs • Journeying towards acceptance 2. Hips • Connecting with emotions 3. Core • Releasing the negative 4. Heart • Making space for love 5. Shoulders • Embracing ourselves 6. Arms • Building strength 7. Mind • Knowing your worth

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Opening the heart can be challenging both physically and emotionally. Heart openers, or backbends, can make people feel quite vulnerable. . I’m naturally quite backbendy, so I never struggled hugely with heart openers. I’m working now on finding strength in them. . Poses like Laghu Vajrasana in the Ashtanga Second Series are exactly what I need. Swipe ➡️ to see the pose in a recent practice. . Day 4 of #YOGISPERFECTLYIMPERFECT is all about the heart. . . 💕 Perfectly Imperfect Hosts 💕 @ashtangi_ali @dariasanchez @yogawithkrystin @supyogawithkarine . 🌹 Generous Sponsors 🌹 @yogisurprise @ajnawellbeing @omstarsofficial @vayumudra @stretchyogastudio @vibratehigher @sup_dog_atx . 💕 Pose list 💕 1. Legs • Journeying towards acceptance 2. Hips • Connecting with emotions 3. Core • Releasing the negative 4. Heart • Making space for love 5. Shoulders • Embracing ourselves 6. Arms • Building strength 7. Mind • Knowing your worth

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Building strength has been an exercise in patience and discipline for me. . Strength is not something that comes naturally to me. I started my yoga practice some 3.5 years ago from a sedentary lifestyle. I was never an athlete, dancer or gymnast. For reference, it took me a year of flopping out of headstand to be able to hold it. . Do I ever wish I was stronger? Yes of course! And that’s why I work on it so much in my practice. I try not to get down on myself for the rate of my progress, and this is pretty easy when I see how far I’ve come. . Day 3 of #YOGISPERFECTLYIMPERFECT is all about the core. . . 💕 Perfectly Imperfect Hosts 💕 @ashtangi_ali @dariasanchez @yogawithkrystin @supyogawithkarine . 🌹 Generous Sponsors 🌹 @yogisurprise @ajnawellbeing @omstarsofficial @vayumudra @stretchyogastudio @vibratehigher @sup_dog_atx . 💕 Pose list 💕 1. Legs • Journeying towards acceptance 2. Hips • Connecting with emotions 3. Core • Releasing the negative 4. Heart • Making space for love 5. Shoulders • Embracing ourselves 6. Arms • Building strength 7. Mind • Knowing your worth

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Do hips store emotion? As a scientifically-minded individual, I of course have to say no. That said, I think I understand what people mean when they say that. . Hip openers are often quite intense, as they stretch very deep muscles that wouldn’t often be stretched. This can naturally cause feelings of anger, fear, and anxiety as part of the body’s response to pain. This certainly has happened to me! . Day 2 of #YOGISPERFECTLYIMPERFECT is all about the hips. . . 💕 Perfectly Imperfect Hosts 💕 @ashtangi_ali @dariasanchez @yogawithkrystin @supyogawithkarine . 🌹 Generous Sponsors 🌹 @yogisurprise @ajnawellbeing @omstarsofficial @vayumudra @stretchyogastudio @vibratehigher @sup_dog_atx . 💕 Pose list 💕 1. Legs • Journeying towards acceptance 2. Hips • Connecting with emotions 3. Core • Releasing the negative 4. Heart • Making space for love 5. Shoulders • Embracing ourselves 6. Arms • Building strength 7. Mind • Knowing your worth

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Lean in. . I tend to push myself pretty hard, in life and my yoga practice. Yesterday during practice I found myself having thoughts comparing myself to other practitioners. My hips should be higher in my jumps. That twist should be deeper. Why is it taking me so long to learn to do that thing? . How does this all relate to the above photo? Lately I’ve been feeling like my hamstrings need more opening, and I’ve been focusing on really leaning into my forward folds. Perfectionism rearing it’s ugly head again, which is naturally rooted in comparing my practice to others. . Today I’m going to focus on meeting my body where it is now and say thank you for all it can already do! . Day 1 of #YOGISPERFECTLYIMPERFECT is all about the legs. . . 💕 Perfectly Imperfect Hosts 💕 @ashtangi_ali @dariasanchez @yogawithkrystin @supyogawithkarine . 🌹 Generous Sponsors 🌹 @yogisurprise @ajnawellbeing @omstarsofficial @vayumudra @stretchyogastudio @vibratehigher @sup_dog_atx . 💕 Pose list 💕 1. Legs • Journeying towards acceptance 2. Hips • Connecting with emotions 3. Core • Releasing the negative 4. Heart • Making space for love 5. Shoulders • Embracing ourselves 6. Arms • Building strength 7. Mind • Knowing your worth

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‘What makes the desert beautiful,’ said the little prince, ‘is that somewhere it hides a well.’ . | Antoine de Saint-Exupéry | . . Life is not black or white, but rather many shades of colour. Along these lines, people are not good or bad. People are people, and everyone possesses good qualities and bad, or holds different values to others. I honestly believe that even the stoniest of hearts holds some bit of love inside it. . What can we do to help others discover their good? If someone is unpleasant, or angry, or lashes out in some way, it’s very hard to see the good in them. I like to remind myself that they’ve been hurt and are interacting with the world in the only way they know how. Keeping this is mind helps me to not retaliate in anger, and try to show compassion. . This does NOT mean that we should be pushovers, and allow others’ negative actions hurt us. We have to set boundaries too, and being kind sometimes means being firm. . On an unrelated note, does anyone know if Elephants Trunk Pose is something taught in classes, or is it an Instagram-only pose? It seems like good prep for leg behind the head postures, and good core work. It’s like half of an L-sit for people like me who can’t do the full thing!

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💕CHALLENGE ANNOUNCEMENT💕 . #YOGISPERFECTLYIMPERFECT May 21st - 28th . The attempt to be perfect by society’s standards is the epitome of unhappiness. We often strive for perfection with our body, in our jobs, in our hobbies, in our relationships and more. It is the notion of competition and comparison. When we notice one imperfection, feel lack or limitation, we begin the torment of self-bashing; this is the ego talking. . Let’s turn that around and stop the negative self-talk right in its tracks and do not let it go further. By noticing those negative thoughts and then changing them to thoughts of acceptance and gratitude, you can form a healthy habit. A daily practice of gratitude transforms LACK into ABUNDANCE. . In this challenge, we will practice forming healthy habits and evolve into more loving and thankful beings. For the next 7 days, share what you enjoy, appreciate, or are grateful for. . We are all worthy and enough. A rose does not compare itself to another rose. It just blooms. We are all perfectly imperfect. 🌹 . . 💕 Perfectly Imperfect Hosts 💕 @ashtangi_ali @dariasanchez @yogawithkrystin @supyogawithkarine . 🌹 Generous Sponsors 🌹 @yogisurprise @ajnawellbeing @omstarsofficial @vayumudra @stretchyogastudio @vibratehigher @sup_dog_atx . 💕 Pose list 💕 1. Legs • Journeying towards acceptance 2. Hips • Connecting with emotions 3. Core • Releasing the negative 4. Heart • Making space for love 5. Shoulders • Embracing ourselves 6. Arms • Building strength 7. Mind • Knowing your worth . 🌹 Challenge Rules 🌹 • Follow all hosts and sponsors • Like and repost this flyer • Make your public so we can see your posts • Tag some friends to join • Use challenge hashtag #YogisPerfectlyImperfect • Tag all hosts and sponsors in your posts • Interact with your fellow hosts & challenge mates • Have fun and be safe! ⠀

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“Mom, pleeeaaasse play with me!”

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My heart breaks for you, America. . Since I left over 10 years ago, I’ve seen some really scary changes happening in my birth country. . Rolling back on changes to implement more accessible healthcare for all. Building walls, both literal and figurative. Refusing to come on board with worldwide efforts to slow climate change. Policies based in greed, with only material wealth in mind. In so many ways, it seems like America is going backwards while the rest of the world progresses. . The abortion ban in Alabama has me deeply worried & saddened. What kind of a message does it send to the women of that state? That they cannot be trusted to make decisions about their own body, mental wellbeing, and the environment that a child is brought into. . As a gynaecologist who has worked in a country that only legalized termination this year, I have seen firsthand the detrimental effects of making abortion illegal. Women procuring medications online from questionable sources. Women afraid to disclose important information to healthcare providers when they present to hospital with complications. Women forced to travel abroad for procedures, often flying home before they’ve fully recovered. . Is this the future that women of America face? I sincerely hope not.

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As you walk and eat and travel, be where you are. Otherwise you will miss most of your life. . | Buddha | . . Trying out something new thanks to my friends at @malaprayer, who sent me one of their Ritual kits to compliment my meditation practice!🧘🏼‍♀️

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Same, same. But a little bit different. . I love this photo from a recent home practice. Bruce is so present in the moment, so totally equanimous, just by sitting looking out the window. My way of tapping in to this single-pointed focus looks a little bit different to his! . Do you consider asana a form of meditation? Why or why not? . For me it definitely is. I feel like I get all the same benefits or seated meditation as I do in asana: bringing up thought patterns to examine them, finding equanimity in discomfort, and focusing on a single thing (almost always the breath). I’d love to hear other people’s thoughts though!

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