Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hurricane Irene

The aftermath of Hurricane Irene has been devastating to the families in our area. Driving around, I can hardly believe my eyes. My heart breaks. The water level of the Rahway River has come down now, but debris is everywhere. Fortunately, The Mill and our studio space at Alluem was spared. Water did fill the basement in entirety, but there was no damage to the main level of the building. We are dry and we have power. We are open and classes are running on their regular schedule. We are amongst the lucky few in town and we are so grateful.

Please know that ALL are welcome to visit the studio anytime. If you need time to breathe, practice, sit, rest, meditate, have tea...whatever you need. Our doors are open. Let this space be your safe haven.

And finally a note from Gina...

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

One more look at the shore...

The Sea Shell Yoga Workshop happening tomorrow, August 24th from 3:00-4:30pm

IS FULL! Space is limited...sorry, no drop-ins!
Grab a Sea Shell and visualize yourself by the sea! Join us for a fun filled hour and a half of under the sea themed yoga inspired by Eric Carle's book, A House for a Hermit Crab. Allow your child to explore the challenges of growing up, facing change, and the practice of non-attachment...just like hermit crabs! (Shells and crafts included.)

Sorry we couldn't get everyone in, but please do enjoy the playlist we'll be listening to during class:
1- Somewhere Over the Rainbow - Israel Kamakawiwo'ole
2 - Moloka'i Slide - Ehukai
3 - He Mele No Lilo - Mark Keali'i Ho'omalu and Kamehameha Schools Children's Chorus
4 - Jamming - Bob Marley
5 - Upside Down - Jack Johnson
6 - Make a Wave - Disney's Friends for a Change feat. Joe Jonas & Demi Lovato
7 - Under the Sea - Samuel E. Wright
8 - Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride - Mark Keali'i Ho'omalu and Kamehameha Schools Children's Chorus
9 - Come to Hawaii - Joe Mcdermott
10 - Surfin' USA - The Beach Boys
11 - Into Yesterday - Sugar Ray
12 - Local to the Max - Imua
13 - To the Sea - Jack Johnson
14 - High Tide or Low Tide - Bob Marley
15 - Home Is - Jodi Benson
16 - Bethany's Wave - Marco Beltrami
17 - Harp Melody Relaxation: Calming Ocean - Amy Camie

Friday, August 19, 2011


On my way to the studio as I passed 3 soccer fields filled with players in pinnies, my quads started to burn. I remember this time of year...the dreaded soccer pre-season. Running laps, field long sprints, Give-n-Gos, squats, crunches while heading, throw downs...not to mention done in the scorching heat. I spent many a days with ice packs and heating pads after hours of conditioning to prep ourselves for the season. Understandably so...I mean, pre-season may just be the most critical time of the entire season.
If only I knew then that yoga was such an amazing compliment to soccer...or any sport for that matter! Luckily, some of the USA Women's National Team have been privy to this information! Hope Solo, one of the best-ever US goalies, attributes her yoga practice for her focus, poise, and reflexes in the goal, according to Nike Women:
“As an athlete I like to keep my speed and my agility, and that dynamic part of who I am. A lot of times simple stretching takes away from your speed, so for me dynamic yoga gives me the ability and empowers me to keep my speed and elongate my muscles.
Several years ago it wasn’t as popular for professional athletes to do. Now you’ll find this day and age people are really starting to realize it really benefits them on the field.”
Honestly, I think yoga is one of the main reasons the team made it to the FIFA Women's World Cup for the first time since 1999...just sayin'.
For more on Soccer and Yoga...click here.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Fall Registration is Open!

Alluem Kids and Teens 8 Week Sessions start the week of Sept. 11th!
Alluem Teens (ages 12-17):

Wednesdays - 6:00-7:00pm

Alluem Tweens (ages 10-12):

Sundays - 11:15am-12:15pm

Mondays - 3:45-4:45pm

Alluem Kids (ages 7-9):

Thursdays - 3:45-4:45pm

Alluem Little Kids (ages 4-6):

Sundays - 10:00-11:00am

Wednesdays - 3:45-4:45pm

$96 per 8 week session (ask about our family rates!)

Email alluemyoga@verizon.net to learn more about our Therapeutic Yoga for the Special Needs Child

Register today! Space is limited!! Sign up online: www.alluemyoga.com - workshops tab

All fees and packages are non-transferable, non-exchangeable and non-refundable. Any classes not used in the duration assigned are forfeit. Make-up classes are allowed during the current session in the age appropriate space.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Creative Yogi

Whether you believe it or not, YOU ARE CREATIVE! We all are. Humans are creative by nature - in the way we speak, the way we move, the way we dress, the way we play and do our work. We are constantly coming up with new ideas and new ways to move through our days. That makes us all creative beings!!!

I recently came across an article on using Yoga Nidra ("Yogic Sleep" - a meditative practice including body scanning, breathing, and guided imagery to calm the central nervous system) for Creativity. When we are in a completely relaxed and open state of mind, our creativity levels naturally rise leaving us to better think, write, draw, paint, sculpt, build, etc, etc. When we are relaxed and free from stress and anxiety we can detach ourselves from the outcome of our projects and create moment by moment working from the inside out. This practice also works wonders in children and was tested on a school in Satna, M.P., India:

The Alluem Kids equally responded positively to the practice as they were hesitant and held some self criticism during the Quick Draw before Yoga Nidra, and were relaxed and free, creating intuitively after Yoga Nidra! It is really something to watch children slowly let go of judgment and hesitation and truly come into their own!

As seen in the video of our workshop....
Drawing the Breath:
Drawing the breath is simply that - place the point of a crayon on your paper. As you inhale drag the crayon up. As you exhale drag the crayon down. Continue this constant zig-zag line all the way down the paper. Play with the breath. Short lines for quick breaths. Long lines for deep breaths. Use different colors. Admire your work.

Quick Draw the Poses:
Grab a friend and pick a pose. Keep your hand loose - DRAW! Keep looking at the pose and looking at your paper - notice the shapes and lines of the body! Scribble scribble until the pose appears on your page! Don't worry about how silly or sloppy it may look. Just let go! Admire your work.

Creating Intuitively:
Embrace how you feel in the present moment. Take a piece of water color paper and pick a color of paint that best represents how you feel right now after practicing yoga and yoga nidra. Listen to what is inside of you. With an option of paint, markers, crayons, pastels, or collage - create freely. Don't not think of the outcome, just take it one step at a time. Admire your work.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Growing to Love Our Bodies

Without question, yoga and body awareness go hand in hand for both children and adults. Personally, when I first found yoga, it was for that main purpose - to embrace myself in the body I am in today. More and more I am seeing how extremely crucial finding a positive and healthy relationship with your body is becoming for children and teens. The article below, put out by CNN this morning, stresses this now more then ever in children as young as 7yrs old.

"The Scary Trend of Tweens with Anorexia"
"-- A 7 year old announces that she's become a vegetarian because she loves animals. Then she starts eating less and less of her food. When her parents bring her into treatment, she is emaciated but pinches a tiny amount of flesh between her thumb and forefinger to illustrate "how fat" she really is. She is a full-blown anorexic.

-- A 10-year-old girl, newly back in the U.S. after her missionary parents return from overseas, feels guilty about the abundance of food she finds here when children in other parts of the world are starving. She cuts her food into smaller and smaller bites and eats fewer and fewer of them. Her parents have no idea she's anorexic until a pediatrician notes that though the girl has grown taller, she hasn't gained weight in more than a year.

-- An 8 year old whose parents are involved in a very messy divorce is frequently too upset to eat. The less she eats, the more concerned her parents become about her health. Soon the fighting virtually stops, transformed into a shared fear for their daughter. The family dynamic has shifted away from the divorce, and her parents have inadvertently reinforced the girl's eating disorder.

Stories like these alarm experts. Eating disorders are dangerous at any age, but when one isn't recognized in a child, or when treatment comes too late, the effects can be catastrophic."

What saddens me is that children are pounded with media images of "the perfect body". They hear parents or older siblings criticizing their bodies and talking about the latest diet fads. They become uncomfortable in their ever changing bodies and don't know how to react. And while we can't control what is being tossed in the faces of our children, we can give them skills to deal with these obstacles and teach them ways to love themselves for who they are.

"It's important for kids with eating disorders to learn to feel connected to their own bodies, as well as to identify their particular stressors and find ways to cope with them in ways that don't involve food. In therapy, the kids at Remuda Ranch (a residential treatment facility for eating disorders in Arizona) also learned to be critical of media messages, and through art, journaling, horseback riding or yoga, they worked to break the cycle of negative thoughts and develop the kind of self-esteem and overall wellness that will be a buffer against recurrence of the disease."

Through yoga we move and breathe in the bodies we are in today. I can't stress enough to my kids to listen to their bodies - do only what feels comfortable and breathe deep. I tell them the only body they should be concentrating on is the body on their own mat. Every body is different, so in yoga there is no comparing. Forming that awareness at a young age is so crucial in today's world. Luckily, through yoga that awareness becomes a FEELING - a feeling of self-love, self-confidence, self-respect, self-appreciation of body, mind, and spirit. When you FEEL something through your body in a relaxed state, it stays with you. It stays in your muscles, your tissues, your subconscious, and your heart. You embrace it, you make it your own, and you grow with it. That is the beauty of yoga.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Off the Mat Tank Top

Off the Mat Into the World tank tops are in! Designed by *me*!

$28 - 100% of the proceeds go to the Global Seva Challenge This year's Global Seva Challenge is for Haiti. Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere. As of September 2010, there are over 1 million refugees still living in tents without access to water, food and health care. Working with select aid organizations that have been engaged in Haiti for many years, OTM will respond to both critical needs and also work to create and implement long term solutions. In addition, OTM offers trainings that empower local individuals and communities to become sustainably self sufficient. Upon reaching the fundraising goal of $20,000, our owner and founder, Gina, will embark on the Bare Witness Tour, a journey to Haiti where she will spend two weeks working directly with the organizations your funds support. The tank top proudly displays the Haitian national slogan "Unity Makes Strength". This slogan holds true not only for the people of Haiti, but also for the people of the Alluem community. Our community of yogis who have come together over the 9 months, have already raised $14,000 for Haiti! We are blessed to be so supported by such amazing people. The tank top also displays "Love" in every language, which is all we have felt from this community and is what we will bring to the people of Haiti. Thank you for your endless support! Stop by the studio for your tank or order one today (sm-xl)! Email alluemyoga@verizon.net! Please make checks payable to The Engage Network (add $5 for shipping).

Thursday, August 4, 2011