31 Dec 2013

PRAIRIE YOGI'S BEST OF 2013


The dawn of a new year tends to inspire reflection. For us, 2013 was the year we took our pipe-dream of a prairie focused yoga community and brought it to life through storytelling and experience, diversifying into merchandise, and corporate wellness too.

To all of you who are a part of this community we have created... Thank you for allowing us to create our dream jobs.

Relive some of our favourite moments from the past year - the stories, and experiences that we have had the privilege to share with the community. 

#10 - RACHELLE TURNS 30 - YOGA + SPA WEEKEND
For our founders big 3-0 we went all out with a luxurious, feel-good getaway at the Fort Garry Hotel's Yoga + Spa weekend.


#9 - FREESTYLIN' - YOGA + SUP @ PATRICIA BEACH
PY teamed up with Abandon Shore Paddleboarding and Be Shri for our first event in June. Over 30 prairie yogis (traveling from as far as Dauphin, MB) got to experience yoga, standup paddle boarding, and a day of bliss at Patricia Beach.


#8 - BLISS AND BEATZ
We collaborated with Savannah Joy Yoga to bring yoga and music together in a places it's never been before. DJ Mama Cutsworth spun while Sam Manchulenko and Nicki Trosky led over 60 yogis through a blissful practice at the Graffiti Art Gallery.


#7 - Wedding morning yoga in Whistler, BC
Traveling to Whistler to witness one of our favourite Prairie Yogis, Phalyn Powell, tie the knot was incredibly special. Practicing yoga with Phalyn and her wedding party at the Four Seasons Hotel in Whistler the morning of her wedding, was a stellar, unforgettable treat.

We brought our practice to the country on a cold, cold Sunday in Stonewall, MB... 

With the help of the warm Prairie yogi community, instructor Liane Charrett was able to fire up the loft of the barn at Boonstra Farms. The cold didn't stop the yoga scavenger hunt in the corn maze #PYheartofgold (or #PYheartofcold ;))

#5 - 365 DAYS OF SWEATING
It seemed 2013 was the year of 30 day challenges for many (you may have even kicked you year off with one!) and this inspiring prairie yogi took it up a notch (or three!) 2013 was Jeramie's year to sweat every day - for 365 straight days. We were honoured to share her story - which in turn inspired others to begin their own 365 day challenge!

The first was so blissful, we couldn't help but do it again. We brought the beats to Historic Fort Gibraltar for two very different, back to back, yoga + music classes, hosting over 120 yogis on a blizzardy November night.


#3 - LAUNCHING PY'S LINE OF INSPIRED APPAREL WITH KAL BARTESKI
We are big fans of Kal Barteski's - ever since we saw her speak at TedX Manitoba in April (another wonderful experience in 2013) and sent out an intention to the universe to one day work with her on some Prairie Yogi tanks.... Four days later, she serendipitously sent us a direct message via Twitter introducing herself and offering her script art services for the Prairie Yogi community!

We felt incredible blessed that Hannah Rose chose to share her brave story on her battle with anorexia athletica with us. Her brutally honest depiction of the way that many women struggle with body image and disordered eating was by far the most powerful story on Prairie Yogi this year.

#1 - WANDERLUST COLORADO (#WLCO)
It was like a scene from Almost Famous (for the modern day yoga girl) when Wanderlust contacted us to be a part of their Wanderlust Journal Blog team. We traveled great lengths to get to Copper Mountain, Colorado to experience this epic yoga and music festival. As part of the experience, we got to sit down and chat with Shiva Rea, Seane Corn, Eoin Finn, and Moby!


We'd love to hear from you - what were your favourite experiences and stories from this past year?

30 Dec 2013

5 TIPS ON SURVIVING THE COLD PRAIRIE WINTER

Written by our December PY of the month, Adrienne Shum

Icy mornings, endless blankets of snow, short days, long underwear - winter has undeniably arrived in the prairies. For some of us, the drop in temperature is welcome relief from the sweltering heat of summer; for others we are burrowing into our scarves and biding our time until spring.

Regardless of preference, we must acknowledge the conditions outside, as they will affect our internal state. Ayurveda, the traditional Indian method of healing, emphasizes finding balance between ourselves and our environments in order to maintain physical and mental health. The drop in temperature ushers in a dry, cold and heavy season, which means we must keep warm and hydrated so we can enjoy it to its fullest. Here are some tips for staying healthy in body, mind and spirit through a prairie winter:

1. Hydrate inside and out.

Common winter ailments due to dryness (e.g. chapped lips, dry skin and constipation) can be mitigated by staying hydrated from within and without. Soups and stews will help keep the inner pipes a-flowing, and a little extra dollop of ghee (clarified butter) will encourage a steady elimination situation as well. Drinking warm or room temperature water is preferred throughout all the seasons, but especially in winter.

To keep your skin hydrated, indulging in an oil massage (try sesame or coconut oil) is a great way to nourish the skin and create a barrier to the season’s cold winds. Just a small oil application everyday will make a difference. Don’t forget to rub a little oil up in your nostrils - there’s skin up there too!

2. Spend time with family and friends.

The cold temperatures can leave us feeling lethargic, heavy and depressed - so staying connected to family and friends will help keep our steps light as we prance through the snowbound streets. Besides, giggling is the best way to warm the body up!

3. Eat warm, nourishing foods.

According to Ayurveda, cooked foods are easier to digest, and eating warm food is ideal in the winter. Start your day off with something warm, such as oatmeal or barley soup, to get your digestive fire going. Heating, pungent spices are perfect for this time of year, so try experimenting with ginger, black pepper, cayenne, or cinnamon in your next kitchen adventure. A yummy non-caffeinated hot beverage is fresh ginger slices steeped in hot water with a good dollop of unpasteurized honey stirred in.


4. Stay warm.

The prevalence of colds and flus is due to the season’s heavy quality, so keeping our internal fire alight will help burn off any toxins that dare to linger in our bodies. Besides a warming diet, partaking in activities that build heat is the best defense. The practice of yoga will inspire heat from within, whether it is practised in a heated room or not. A brisk trot along the river will also do wonders for keeping your body and mind happy - and if you bring a friend and a hot beverage, you’ll be invincible!

Of course, make sure you bundle up when you go outside, ensuring that your neck , head and ears are covered. Don’t think you look good in snowpants? Well remember that it is your inner beauty that really matters anyway.

5. Make crafts!

Kidding! Not really! Winter is when Mother Nature takes a rest and the growth of beings in her charge slows down, which can be a little depressing and gloomy. Remind yourself that not all is lost and discover the joy of creating something with your own hands, whether it is a handknit scarf or a printed tea towel.

In all seriousness, the quiet tone of winter is conducive to puttering around at home, so take advantage of this introspective time to recharge and reflect...and maybe make your own snow globe.

If you want to learn more about Ayurveda, the sister science of yoga, join us on Sunday, January 12th for our BODY - MIND - SOUL cleansing workshop. We will cultivating heat with a hot yoga practice and will follow with some aryuvedic exploration and a community meal and dessert. Early bird pricing ends January 1st, 2014. Buy your ticket today!

15 Dec 2013

BODY - MIND - SOUL - Cleansing Workshop


Balance out the overindulgences of the season with Prairie Yogi's next event: MIND - BODY - SOUL.

This cleansing workshop at Stafford Street Hot Yoga begins with a 90 minute detoxifying and warming Bikram style class led by Amanda Ing, followed by a community meal and ayurvedic exploration. Kalee Mund will show you how to prepare a traditional ayurvedic curry to hydrate, cleanse, and nourish your body with a special ayurvedic dessert to follow.

Very limited space is available in this workshop, book your space today to avoid disappointment.
$35 Earlybird (until December 31st) 
$40 Regular

All orders placed before Christmas will receive an interactive PDF ticket that can printed and presented as a gift.


Big thanks to Fresh Option for providing us with fresh, organic produce!

12 Dec 2013

DJ MATEO'S TRACKS FOR THE MAT

“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination
and life to everything.” ― Plato

Life's sweeter with a soundtrack. I like to crank up the volume and listen to music while doing pretty much anything: writing, washing dishes, working, and flowing through a strong warrior series. While beginning to deepen my home practice, I found that something was missing: sweet, blissful beats to flow to. I had difficulty finding music to compliment my practice that didn't distract me from my breath - quickly discovering that my favourite beats (like this classic) weren't necessarily the right tracks for the mat.

So I turned to Matt Yausie (also known as DJ Mateo) from Regina for some advice. Matt's a  Prairie Yogi who's passionate about electronic music and yoga. He recommended these tracks that have brought sweet rhythm to my home practice.

Happy practicing Prairie Yogis!



Find out more about Matt: his yoga schedule, music events, and all around awesomeness at www.matthewyausie.com.

10 Dec 2013

WARM WINTER VEGGIE AYURVEDIC SOUP


Intimidated by Ayurveda? Don't be! Watch our Prairie Yogi of the Month, Adrienne Shum, make a beautiful veggie soup in less than two minutes (that's YouTube time, folks). 

We shopped at The Forks Market and continued on to our Creative Director's kitchen where Adrienne prepared a warm, savoury ayurvedic soup that warmed us from the inside on a chilly (okay, freezing) Canadian prairie day.

Here's the recipe, Prairie Yogis:

3 Dec 2013

YOGA: A SMALL PART IN A BIG GREY CUP VICTORY



Last week, all of those who bleed green got to experience an incredible moment in prairie history: not only did the Saskatchewan Roughriders win the 101st Grey Cup, they won it on their home turf at Mosaic Stadium at Taylor Field in Regina, Saskatchewan. Roughrider fans epitomize the term prairie pride, with the Canadian Football League's most die hard fans. (The Saskatchewan Rough Riders franchise sells more merchandise than all other CFL teams combined, despite being the smallest market in the league.) 

Fan support was one of the reasons the Roughriders were able to take home the cup. That along with smart passing, wicked receptions, and... pranayama breathing?

"It's a very fast-paced game," says Matt Yausie, the Roughriders contracted yoga instructor, "you may only have 20 seconds to recover. Yoga teaches athletes to be able to react with a calm state of mind."

Yausie, a Saskatoon native who teaches power flow yoga at Level 10 Fitness in Regina has been working with Roughriders players for the last three years in the off-season. Yausie is trained by Baron Baptiste, a power yoga legend who worked with the Philadelphia Eagles when they were the most injured football team in the NFL (who would later would become the least injured team in the league.)


"Yoga has allowed me to extend my football career. There is no way I would have been able to play as long as I have without my practice. It created a space for healing, and to mentally prepare for the physically demanding game," says the 30 year-old former defensive back for the University of Regina Rams.

Yausie found yoga in 2006 after having suffered his fair share of tackles and injuries in his own football career and found his first class "very difficult," but felt immediate relief from the asanas to his tight joints.

"Athletes have great challenges in yoga," Yausie adds, crediting a rigorous training schedule and outside pressures as some of their biggest hurdles to finding a practice. But thanks to Dan Farthing, the owner of Level 10 Fitness, a former Saskatchewan Roughrider, and the current strength and conditioning coordinator for the team, Yausie's 60 minute restorative yoga class has been taught to members of the team on day one of the team's training cycle. 

"What I enjoy about teaching athletes is that they really do care, and apply themselves to the best of their ability," says Yausie.

"I have a small part in what they do on the field," he adds, "but bringing yoga to athletes has created a really nice way for me to be a part of the game."

Yausie's contribution to the Roughrider's success earned him a spot on the 50 yrd line to watch the 101st Grey Cup.

"It was such a special evening. The energy was electric in Mosaic Park."


Thanks for the Skype interview Matt! Namaste.


2 Dec 2013

PRAIRIE YOGI OF THE MONTH: ADRIENNE SHUM




Adrienne Shum. This beautiful beam of light exudes grace and softness, and if you've ever been to one of her yoga classes you're probably sitting at your computer nodding your head in agreement. Shum melds her extensive academic background in Food Sciences (Master's degree) with her Ayurvedic practice. Originally from Toronto, Shum has planted her roots in the Prairies since 2009, where she first began her yoga teacher training.

"It's funny because I'm not from the Prairies- I'm from Toronto. But it's here in the prairies that I've discovered a dedicated, deepened yoga practice." said Shum.

Shum currently teaches yoga and hosts Ayurvedic workshops at Yoga Public in Winnipeg, Canada.