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Yoga Every Day Keeps the Doctor Away

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Yoga is an essential daily practice for me as a liveaboard cruiser; it keeps me limber and strong to be able to operate at my best physical condition, as sailboat living requires; and it promotes my physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing for myself and importantly to be the best partner to Rand.

Taking 60-90 minutes first thing in the morning to practice yoga on the front deck of Golden Glow sets up every day to be its best.image

The kind of yoga I practice is called Synergy, developed by the wonderful Peri Ness DeFay. It is an offshoot from basic Bikram yoga, with lots of breath work, every posture-asana being performed twice, and a period of breathing (where the healing takes place) in between the asanas.

Practicing this yoga daily back in 2001/2002 in a heated studio (which adds the healing benefit of deeply purifying sweating) got me through the most challenging period in my life. If I felt blue, I would head off to yoga and by the end of the class, I always would feel better.

imageYoga on a sailboat at anchor brings the additional magic of looking out over the ocean and beautiful scenery. And of course there’s an extra dimension balancing while the sea gently rocks the boat. I often adjust where I’m standing to keep our furled foresails, the mast, or one of the sheets (lines) of our sails nearby to help me steady.

Synergy starts with a chant: Oh Spirit, All the Great Ones, bless us in our efforts to prepare body and mind, that the soul may advance to Thee. Om Shanti Shanti Shanti, Om Peace Peace Peace.

Here are the postures making up the Synergy Yoga flow:

Standing Postures ( about 60 minutes)

My laminated diagram of the Synergy flow

Standing Deep Breathing Pranayama

Sun Salutation Soorya Namaskar

Half Moon Pose Series Arda Chandrasana with Pada Hastasana

Awkward Pose Utkatasana

Eagle Pose Garurasana

Standing Yoga Mudra Yoga Standing Head to Knee Pose (in 3 parts) Dandayamana Janushirasana

Standing Bow Pulling Dandayamana Dhanurasana

Balancing Stick Pose Tuladandasana

Advanced Balancing Stick Poorna Tuladandasana

Standing Separate Leg Stretching Dandayamana Bibhaktapada Paschimotthanasana

Triangle Pose Trikonasana

Standing Separate Leg Stretching head to Knee Pose Dandayamana Bibhaktapada Janushirasana

Tree Pose Tadasana

Pillar Pose Stambhasana

Floor Postures (about 30 minutes)image

Corpse Pose Savasana

Wind Removing Pose Pavanamuktasana

Yogi Sit-Up

Cobra Pose Bhujangasana

Half Locust Pose Ardha Salabhasana, Locust Salabhasana

Full Locust Pose Poorna Salabhasana

Bow Pose Dhanurasana

Cat Stretch

Cat-Cow Stretch

Fixed Firm Pose Supta Vajrasana

Pigeon Kapsotasana

Half Tortoise Ardha Kurmasana

Camel Pose Ustrasana

Rabbit Pose Sasangasana

Lion Pose Simhasana with Energizing: Tensing Whole Body

Rotated Separate Leg Stretching Parivrtta Janushirasana

Head to Knee Pose Janushirasana

Forward Stretching Pose Paschimotthanasana

Spine Twisting Pose Ardha Matsyendrasana

Blowing in Fixed Firm Pose Kapalabhati in Vajrasana

Corpse Pose Savasana

Alternate Nostril Breathing Anulom Viloma

End with Om Shanti Shanti Shanti

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