Yoga for Beating the Summer Heat

The 3 Hs are in effect here in NY -- hot, hazy, and humid. Right now I'm keeping cool by staying inside in the AC (I like to go for evening walks in the summertime), listening to the newly released Eat, Pray, Love soundtrack (you can get it on iTunes too) and sipping some lemon-infused water. This summer, I seem to be enjoying my yoga practice more than usual, and I've been spending some quality time upside down (gotta love defying gravity) on my OmGym. Perhaps it's my recent vacation (yes, I did finally get back -- apparently the third time IS the charm), or all of the yoga or the daily inversion, but I'm feeling rejuvenated and extra happy this past month.

If you're looking for a little summer infusion of yoga bliss, I've got a few suggestions...

  • If you'd like to download a free summer flow yoga practice from Eoin Finn, click here. Eoin and this practice offer the laid-back summer vibe that is sure to relax and invigorate at the same time. If you live in Vancouver and would like to practice with Eoin in person, come to Camp Moomba Yogathon and Blissfest this Saturday, July 24. Click here for all the details. Ah, makes me wish I lived closer to Vancouver...
  • If you're in the mood for a summer road trip, I recommend checking out the Wanderlust yoga retreat and music festival. This orgy of yoga, music, and fun takes place in Lake Tahoe, CA July 29-August 1. If you're looking to have an amazing experience without the same old boring summer vacation feel, check out Wanderlust.
  • If California is a little too far west for you, then check out Denver. Every Sunday through Sept. 19 in Denver's City Park is yoga, live music, and plenty of socializing. Yoga Rocks the Park (yep, I love that name) is the name of this weekly phenomenon. The cost for a day of fun is only $10, and all profits are donated to the Colorado-based non-profit organization Yoga World Reach. For more information about Yoga Rocks the Park, click here.
  • If you're someone that likes to plan ahead, early registration for the 2010 Symposium on Yoga Research ends on August 1. Click here for more information and to register at the discounted rate through August 1
  • If you're more at home in the garden than on the road this summer, or if you're an outdoor warrior who enjoys engaging in outdoor sports, there's help for you if you've overdone it -- The Yantra Kit. The kit (which retails for just under $30), designed by the folks who brought us the Yantra Mat, offers a number of goodies to deliver healing acupressure to sore spots. The kit includes a belt, a pillow, and two rings. The belt — covered with the same flower spikes as the Yantra Mat — is two pieces connected by a zipper, so that you can decide how much surface area you’d like to cover. Ties keep the belt in place, so it’s perfect for just about any part of the body, including thighs, knees, posterior, arms, and lumbar spine. The pillow  — an inflatable inner pillow and an outer casing with the same flower spikes — is perfect for the neck and face. The rings, which come in two sizes, are meant to be slid up and down the fingers and toes to stimulate acupressure points. I brought the belt on vacation with me, and I practically had to wrestle my family for the right to use it. It's cheaper than getting a massage or acupuncture and it feels heavenly.
  • If the heat is getting to you (let's face it -- the term "heat wave" has been used quite a bit already and it's only July), I recommend Sitali Pranayam. This practice is for self-healing and will cool you down and is said to prevent aging. I've been practicing this every day and it never fails to relax me, cool me down, and make me feel good.



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