Gwen Lawrence

5 Yoga Poses to Fight Seasonal Allergies

Gwen Lawrence by Gwen Lawrence | May 7th, 2013 | 4 Comments
topic: Family Health, Fitness, Health & Wellness, Yoga | tags: air pollution, allergens, allergic reaction, allery symptoms, alternative medicine, alternative therapies, asthma, backbends, breath, breathe, breathing, bronchitis, cigarette smoke, coughing, doctor, dust, expert, Fish Pose, food, Gwen Lawrence, health, holistic healing, immune system, insect venom, instructor, inversions, itchy eyes, mold, perfume, plow pose, pollen, respiratory system, runny nose, seasonal allergies, shoulder stand, sneezing, stress, strong odors, teacher, Three-Part Yogic Breath, watery eyes, well-being, wellness, yoga for allergies, yoga poses

Yoga for Allergies

It’s allergy season — that time of year when many of us are plagued by itchy or watery eyes, runny noses, and bouts of sneezing and coughing that threaten to knock pictures off the wall. These common allergy symptoms are the body’s way of defending itself against bacteria and viruses. Luckily, yoga can help!

First, we have to figure out where those annoying symptoms are coming from. Allergies are triggered by allergens. Some of the most common seasonal allergens include pollen, dust, mold, food and insect venom. Irritants such as cigarette smoke, air pollution and some strong odors (such as perfumes) also impinge the respiratory system.

The best way to prevent allergy symptoms is to avoid what triggers them — such as by staying indoors on days when the pollen count is at its highest and keeping your home free of dust. But yoga can also help with both the prevention and management of allergy symptoms.

Yoga for Road Trips

Gwen Lawrence by Gwen Lawrence | December 7th, 2012 | No Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Fitness, Yoga | tags: back-pain, breathing, breathing techniques, car, dry eyes, eye stretches, Forward Folds, Gwen Lawrence, high gas prices, holiday, holiday travel, inflation, lions pose, low back, road rage, road trip, road trips, shoulder shrugs, shoulders, stress, stretching, summer, tension, tight forearms, travel, vacation, wrist rolls, wrists, Yoga

With air travel rates literally reaching the skies, many people are choosing to drive instead of fly to their holiday destinations. But along with the excitement of your trip, you can expect to feel some anxiety and stress. Not to mention, succumbing to the inevitable frustration of traffic and road rage after spending hours in the car. In order to balance the added stressors that accompany affordable travel, get into the habit of stretching while on the road.

Here are five yoga poses, stretches and breathing techniques to undo the tension of long hours in the car and help you arrive to your destination refreshed and happy.

Yoga Poses for Tight Hamstrings & Back Pain

Gwen Lawrence by Gwen Lawrence | November 8th, 2012 | 5 Comments
topic: Fitness, Yoga | tags: back strain, back-pain, breathe, desk jobs, desk stretches, desk yoga, Gwen Lawrence, hamstrings, herniated disc, injury, legs, low back pressure, lower back, lumbar, Pigeon pose, Plow Pose with straight legs, poses for hamstrings, posture, Seated Forward Bend, short hamstring, short hamstrings, spine, Standing Forward Bend, Standing Forward Bend against the wall, stretch, stretches, stretching, thighs, tight hips, weak abdominals, Wide-Legged Forward Bend, Yoga, yoga poses, yoga poses for hamstrings

Standing Forward FoldEverybody is susceptible to tight hamstrings, from professional athletes to soccer moms. People who spend long hours sitting at a desk or who have rigorous training schedules can especially benefit from a “hammie” stretch or two (or three or four).

Young Athletes: Are Kids Specializing in Sports Too Early?

Gwen Lawrence by Gwen Lawrence | October 17th, 2012 | No Comments
topic: Family Health, Fitness, Health & Wellness, Yoga | tags: baseball, basketball, body balance, children, coaches, football, Gwen Lawrence, kids, left dominant sports, michael jordan, muscle development, muscles, parenting, parents, physical development, right dominant sports, soccer, sports, sports specialization, sports training, tennis

Kids in Sports

Could your children be making decisions that hurt their physical development? While I don’t claim to be a doctor, I do have very specific feelings about your young athletes specializing in one sport too early. Consider these points when your 12-year-old tells you he/she only wants to play soccer from here on out and eventually become a pro!

Yoga at Work: 5 Poses to Do at Your Desk

Gwen Lawrence by Gwen Lawrence | August 13th, 2012 | 2 Comments
topic: Fitness, Yoga | tags: balance, blood flow, body, desk slump, desk yoga, desk yoga routine, focused, Gwen Lawrence, happy body, hunched, office yoga, oxygenation, pigeon, posture, productive, reduce stress, seated pigeon, Seated Twists, sedentary, Shoulder stretches, sit at desk, sitting, slouch, stress-free, wrist stretches, Yoga, yoga at work

Desk Yoga

How much more productive would you be if you could clear your mind by opening your body? If you sit at a desk all day, taking periodic breaks to move your body can counteract chronic “desk slump” and reduce stress and muscle tension.

Since yoga is all about balance, it is the perfect tool for creating a happy, stress-free body. When your body is in this state, your mind is more focused, making you a more productive and valuable employee.

In order to bring the body into balance and increase blood flow and oxygenation, do the following desk yoga routine at least once a day. Need a reminder? Write yourself a Post-it note! I’ll bet you have some in your desk…

Create a Fitness “Play” List

Girlfriend@Gaiam by Girlfriend@Gaiam | February 28th, 2012 | No Comments
topic: Fitness, Weight Loss, Yoga | tags: Debbie Rocker, exercise, Fitness, gaiam tv, GaiamTV, GaiamTV.com, Gwen Lawrence, Jillian Michaels, lose-weight, play list, playlist, resolution, rodney yee, the firm, weight-loss, work out, workout, workout videos, Yoga

Workout PlaylistMaybe it’s cabin fever, or perhaps it’s just all those Girl Scout cookies, but I’m ready for something new in my fitness routine. Aren’t you?

Like many people, I made a resolution to lose weight, and I’ve been keeping up my end of the bargain I made with myself to work out for at least 30 minutes, five days a week. Now I’m ready for something new: a new challenge, a different routine, a never-tried-that-before workout.

Kaki Mudra: Yoga for Outer Beauty

Gwen Lawrence by Gwen Lawrence | February 16th, 2012 | No Comments
topic: Yoga | tags: acne, aging, beautiful, blemishes, breathing techniques, chakras, complexion, face yoga, fifth chakra, glow, Gwen Lawrence, inner beauty, kaki mudra, Kika Mudra, outer beauty, parathyroid, respiratory system, skin, thyroid, wrinkles, Yoga, yoga for beauty, yoga for the face, Yogi Malik

Face Yoga

Traditionally, yoga focuses on inner beauty, but I recently came across a secret yogi technique to enhance the outer beauty as well. No scalpel, no down time, no pain, no magic creams — sounds like a slam dunk to me! Why wouldn’t you want to try it?!

Ancient yogic texts mention an exercise known as Kaki Mudra, which can be used to strengthen the muscles in your face. The routine was meant to be kept as a sacred yogi secret, but I aim to share the wealth.

Plantar Fasciitis: How to Heal the Sole

Gwen Lawrence by Gwen Lawrence | January 13th, 2012 | 9 Comments
topic: Fitness, Health & Wellness, Yoga | tags: foot pain, Gwen Lawrence, heel pain, plantar fasciitis, plantar fascitis, Power Yoga for Sports, Yoga, yoga for foot pain, yoga for injury prevention, yoga for sports injuries, yoga toes

For athletes, plantar fasciitis is one of the most common sources of heel pain. The plantar fascia is a ligament that connects your heel bone to your toes. Strain to the fascia weakens it, causing pain and swelling in the heel. It is a problem that plagues regular exercisers as well as football players, tennis players, soccer players and basketball players every day.

Causes:

  • High arches or flat feet
  • Working, running or standing on hard surfaces
  • Being overweight
  • Tight Achilles tendons
  • Tight calves
  • Weak inside edge of foot, causing roll-in (pronation)

Fix:

Aside from rest and ice, you can take anti-inflammatories, such as ibuprofen, naproxen or aspirin (consult your doctor first) to help with an acute case. I take a standpoint of prevention. There are several defensive approaches.