yoga http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/11644/all en-US The 5 Best Hot Yoga Towels http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-hot-yoga-towels <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-best-hot-yoga-towels" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_yoga_mat_47452450.jpg" alt="Woman using best hot yoga towels during hot yoga" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Hot yoga classes can help you sweat out toxins and burn major calories, but they can also be a sweaty mess. In order to keep yourself dry, and your mat slip-proof, you need a quality hot yoga towel. This will provide the right amount of grip to prevent you from slipping and sliding all over the mat.</p> <h2>What Is a Hot Yoga Towel?</h2> <p>A hot yoga towel is an absorbent towel that can provide a sanitary and slip-resistant surface, which can help improve grip and traction during Bikram, Ashtanga, and hot yoga sessions. It can also add a hygienic layer between you and your yoga mat, which can reduce the risk of spreading harmful bacteria to your skin. It can also add a little extra cushioning and comfort to your yoga mat. You can also use yoga towels to wipe sweat away from the face, body, and hands.</p> <p>To get the best value from your hot yoga towel, it&rsquo;s important to clean it after every use. Fortunately, yoga towels are easy to clean, so they can also save you time on cleaning your mat. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-yoga-blocks?ref=seealso">The 5 Best Yoga Blocks</a>)</p> <h2>Top 5 Hot Yoga Towels</h2> <h3>Yogitoes Skidless Premium Mat Size Yoga Towel</h3> <p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002TN0K9C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B002TN0K9C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=18c4241d33f7d402d5c673b6c9ab2cca"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/yogitoes.jpg" width="245" height="75" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002TN0K9C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B002TN0K9C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=18c4241d33f7d402d5c673b6c9ab2cca">Yogitoes Skidless Premium Mat Size Yoga Towel</a> is ideal for anyone, even those with allergies and skin sensitivities. The patented Skidless technology has 100% silicone dots that grip and keep the towel in place on your mat, so you don&rsquo;t slip. The microfiber towel is lightweight, durable, comfortable, hygienic, ultra-absorbent, and resists movement. This is an eco-friendly option that requires 2/3 less energy to produce thanks to its construction of 50% recycled material. Each towel is made using recycled polyester and eight recycled plastic bottles and all dyes are AZO, lead, and heavy-metal free. It is recommended to mist the towel with water before beginning class for best results. It is machine washable, so you can clean it in no time.</p> <p>This is available in more than 70 beautiful colors and patterns to match any yogi&rsquo;s style. It is one of the most popular mat-length yoga towels on the market. It is also a Consumer Search top pick, an Amazon best-seller, and is recommended by PopSugar. It is also highly regarded by most yogis and most find it hard to beat.</p> <p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002TN0K9C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B002TN0K9C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=18c4241d33f7d402d5c673b6c9ab2cca"><em>Currently $49.14 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Gaiam Thirsty Yoga Towels</h3> <p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008R71ZFM/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B008R71ZFM&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=4a546c6d09fad49736c68283797b1d41"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/gaiam_0.jpg" width="245" height="104" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008R71ZFM/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B008R71ZFM&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=4a546c6d09fad49736c68283797b1d41">Gaiam Thirsty Yoga Towels</a> are ideal if you tend to sweat a lot. The hypoallergenic, nonpermeable towel will keep you and your mat dry. The super-absorbent microfiber towel can absorb twice as much moisture as a standard towel and dries in half the time. It is the same size as a standard mat, so you can easily keep your mat dry. It is also machine washable, so you can clean it in no time.</p> <p>This compact attractive mat comes in a wide range of colors and sizes. It is recommended by PopSugar and comes from the widely respected Gaiam brand, so you can trust the quality and dependability.</p> <p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008R71ZFM/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B008R71ZFM&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=4a546c6d09fad49736c68283797b1d41"><em>Currently $10.49 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Manduka eQua Yoga Mat Towel</h3> <p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GDGHUCQ/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00GDGHUCQ&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=445e71ccfd63ce33f9f93a74fbb28b3d"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/manduka.jpg" width="200" height="172" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GDGHUCQ/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00GDGHUCQ&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=445e71ccfd63ce33f9f93a74fbb28b3d">Manduka eQua Yoga Mat Towel</a> has been updated with a thicker and plusher build, so it&rsquo;s more absorbent and slip-resistant than ever. The eco-conscious microfiber towel is ultra soft, plush, durable, lightweight, quick-drying, and has great grip. The tightly woven fibers produce a soft, suede-like feel, which reviewers say feels luxurious. You can simply lay it over your mat to provide grip support where you need it most. It is recommended to mist the towel with water before beginning class for best results. It is recyclable and machine washable for easy care.</p> <p>This is available in eight colors and a range of sizes. It is frequently recommended by hardcore yogis, is a Consumer Search pick, and is recommended by PopSugar. It is also commonly compared to the Yogitoes mat, which is more expensive than this one, but also made it to our list of best hot yoga towels. Even Consumer Search suggests this as a more affordable option, compared to the Yogitoes mat.</p> <p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GDGHUCQ/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00GDGHUCQ&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=445e71ccfd63ce33f9f93a74fbb28b3d"><em>Currently $35.47 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Shandali #1 Best Hot Yoga Towel</h3> <p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00SSC9EM2/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B00SSC9EM2&amp;linkId=d1d3da88b2eda468410a8e6aa32688d6"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/shandali_0.jpg" width="245" height="104" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00SSC9EM2/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B00SSC9EM2&amp;linkId=d1d3da88b2eda468410a8e6aa32688d6">Shandali Hot Yoga Towel</a> has a slip-free foundation that will never slide, no matter how sweaty you get. It is made of the highest quality material and is super durable, so it should last you for years. The lightweight, anti-slip, microfiber towel is ultra-absorbent and quick-drying. It is plush and super soft, so it will feel comfy on even the thinnest yoga mats. It fits perfectly on any mat and can be folded up small, so you can easily take it to your next hot yoga class. It is washing machine friendly and has eco-ink dye, so it can easily maintain long lasting brightness.</p> <p>This hot yoga towel is available in a range of colors and in two different sizes to fit your personal needs and preferences. It is an Amazon best-seller and has nearly 700 five-star reviews on Amazon. It is also backed by rave reviews from yogis and is one of the most highly recommended hot yoga towels on trusted publications like Yogauthority. It is also backed by a lifetime guarantee, so you&rsquo;re bound to be happy.</p> <p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00SSC9EM2/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B00SSC9EM2&amp;linkId=d1d3da88b2eda468410a8e6aa32688d6"><em>Currently $12.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Yoga Towel by Youphoria Yoga</h3> <p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00NEPOZJ0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00NEPOZJ0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=ed0b63c6030447cca4f288aba353e9df"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/youphoria.jpg" width="200" height="133" align="right" alt="" /></a>As Amazon&rsquo;s #1 best seller in yoga mats, the <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00NEPOZJ0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00NEPOZJ0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=ed0b63c6030447cca4f288aba353e9df">Yoga Towel by Youphoria Yoga</a> is bound to work well. It can hold seven times its weight in liquid and dries very quickly. The moisture-wicking microfiber towel is ultra absorbent, slip resistant, lightweight, machine washable, and high quality. It can improve your grip and won&rsquo;t slide around on your mat. It is recommended to mist the towel with water before beginning class for best results.</p> <p>This comes in a range of colors to suit your personal style. It is one of the &ldquo;most wished for&rdquo; items on Amazon and has outstanding reviews online, including more than 1,700 five-star reviews on Amazon. It is also backed by a satisfaction guarantee, so you&rsquo;re bound to be happy.</p> <p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00NEPOZJ0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00NEPOZJ0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=ed0b63c6030447cca4f288aba353e9df"><em>Currently $19.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <p>And those are our recommendations for the best hot yoga towels. As always, be sure to check <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buying-calendar">Wise Bread's Buying Calendar</a> to learn when and how to buy just about anything!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-hot-yoga-towels">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-smart-scales">The 5 Best Smart Scales</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-mountain-bikes">The 5 Best Mountain Bikes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats">The 5 Best Exercise Mats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-facial-masks">The 5 Best Facial Masks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-women-s-running-shoes">The 5 Best Women’s Running Shoes</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty 5 best hot yoga product reviews shopping yoga yoga accessories yoga towels Thu, 23 Jun 2016 09:00:08 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1733682 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: The 119 Best Fitness Hacks for Busy People http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-119-best-fitness-hacks-for-busy-people <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-the-119-best-fitness-hacks-for-busy-people" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_yoga_mat_000085758495.jpg" alt="Woman learning fitness hacks for busy people" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>&quot;I don't have enough time to work out.&quot; This is an excuse that most of us use to skip a scheduled sweat sesh. While it's true that there just aren't enough hours of the day to accomplish all of our tasks, it is still possible to make time to exercise regularly without shirking other responsibilities. All you need to do is find the right workout &mdash; something that you don't hate doing &mdash; that can also be done in tiny time increments. So instead of trying to set aside an hour each day to get in shape, you can almost certainly justify a handful of five or 10-minute workouts to do throughout the day.</p> <p>Here are our best 119 fitness hacks that require minimal time, and can fit into your normal schedule seamlessly.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/running-in-city-177433722-small.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-get-toned-with-as-little-effort-as-humanly-possible?ref=FBF">4 Ways to Get Toned With as Little Effort as Humanly Possible</a> &mdash; Busy bees know that effort takes time, and time is money. These tips make it easy to get cut without cutting any of your daily tasks.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-personal-finance-moves-you-can-make-while-jogging?ref=FBF">8 Personal Finance Moves You Can Make While Jogging</a> &mdash; Multitasking is the key to masterfully managing a hectic schedule. So while you're going for a run, make these important money moves and you'll have less boxes to check on your to-do list!</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-surprising-benefits-of-a-10-minute-walk?ref=FBF">10 Surprising Benefits Of: A 10 Minute Walk</a> &mdash; Don't shrug off the value of a quick stroll around the block. If that's all you have time for, remember that it'll be time well spent.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/family_exercising_000027499027.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-quick-workouts-you-can-do-during-commercial-breaks?ref=FBF">9 Quick Workouts You Can Do During Commercial Breaks</a> &mdash; Your end-of-day TV time is sacred to you, as it should be. This is how you unwind after a crazy day. But there's no reason you can't unwind while also working out! Here are nine quick workouts to do during the commercials.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-simple-ways-to-trick-yourself-into-burning-more-calories?ref=FBF">7 Simple Ways to Trick Yourself Into Burning More Calories</a> &mdash; Sometimes you need to trick yourself into doing things you're never in the mood to do. And for most of us, that includes exercising. And these tricks are brilliant, because it's like you're not even working out at all, while still burning calories.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-easy-back-exercises-that-will-help-eliminate-pain?ref=FBF">10 Easy Back Exercises That Will Help Eliminate Pain</a> &mdash; Nobody has time to be sidelined by back pain! These easy moves will combat tightness or soreness in your back, and keep you in tip top form to continue crushing it.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/fitness_1.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fitness-for-people-who-hate-exercise?ref=FBF">Fitness For People Who Hate Exercise</a> &mdash; Working out sucks, but it's gotta be done if you want to maintain your overall health and live to a ripe old age. So instead of making time for a fitness activity you abhor, give these a try and you'll always find the time.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-easy-ways-to-burn-almost-1000-extra-calories-per-day?ref=FBF">10 Easy Ways to Burn Almost 1000 Extra Calories Per Day</a> &mdash; When it comes to losing weight and becoming your best physical self, working out is only half the battle. These nutrition hacks will help you cut the excess calories, which will ultimately improve your energy and make exercise more fun! Speaking of more fun&hellip;</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/50-ways-to-make-exercise-more-fun?ref=FBF">50 Ways to Make Exercise More Fun</a> &mdash; You will never find the time &mdash; not even 5-10 minutes &mdash; to workout if you hate your method of fitness. Here's how to make your sweat sesh way more enjoyable.</p> <p><em>What other ways can you get fit on a busy schedule? Share with us in the comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-119-best-fitness-hacks-for-busy-people">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-99-best-fitness-hacks-of-all-time">Flashback Friday: The 99 Best Fitness Hacks of All Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-95-best-ways-to-get-fit-for-free">Flashback Friday: The 95 Best Ways to Get Fit for Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-81-best-tips-for-saving-big-at-the-grocery-store">Flashback Friday: The 81 Best Tips for Saving Big at the Grocery Store</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/36-workouts-you-can-do-in-your-living-room-while-its-cold-out">36 Workouts You Can Do in Your Living Room While It&#039;s Cold Out</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-of-our-favorite-fitness-and-diet-smart-phone-apps-0">8 of our Favorite Fitness and Diet Smart Phone Apps</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Health and Beauty Lifestyle exercise fbf fitness fitness goals flashback friday frugal fitness Health workouts yoga Fri, 25 Mar 2016 10:00:09 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1678944 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: The 99 Best Fitness Hacks of All Time http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-99-best-fitness-hacks-of-all-time <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-the-99-best-fitness-hacks-of-all-time" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/women_running_outside_000065820733.jpg" alt="Women learning best fitness hacks of all time" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Working out is hard. Maintaining the motivation to workout consistently is even harder. Sometimes you just aren't in the mood, or you're too tired, or you're out of time. But the key to exercising frequently is to have patience, realistic goals, and the right plan in place. The right plan includes tips, tricks, and hacks to give your bod the best workout in the least amount of time. With these elements, you'll be plum out of excuses to keep you from getting to the gym.</p> <p>Here are the 99 best fitness hacks we've ever shared.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_exercising_000049491904.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-tricks-to-avoid-workout-burnout">10 Tricks to Avoid Workout Burnout</a> &mdash; Workout burnout happens often when we've lost ourselves in our fitness goals, and exercise way too often in a short amount of time. There's only so much your body is capable of doing in a day, especially considering your other responsibilities like work, kids, and school. But here's how to prevent that burnout from ever even occurring, and keep you on the path to fitness success.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-quick-workouts-you-can-do-during-commercial-breaks">9 Quick Workouts You Can Do During Commercial Breaks</a> &mdash; If you have time to watch TV, then you have plenty of time to workout. Sweat it out during commercial breaks with these killer moves.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-simple-ways-to-get-motivated-for-your-workout">7 Simple Ways to Get Motivated for Your Workout</a> &mdash; When you need to jumpstart your fitness motivation, here's how to do it, and do it right.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/hiking-489644177-small.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-7-exercises-are-scientifically-proven-to-increase-happiness">These 7 Exercises Are Scientifically Proven to Increase Happiness</a> &mdash; You want to be happier, and you want to work out more. These are two goals pretty much everyone has, so why not kill two birds with one stone and do these joy-inducing exercises?</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-work-out-when-its-hot-outside">5 Ways to Work Out When It's Hot Outside</a> &mdash; There's nothing worse than sweating before you even begin your workout. So when the temperatures rise, here's how you can get a good workout without getting stuck in the heat.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/36-workouts-you-can-do-in-your-living-room-while-its-cold-out">36 Workouts You Can Do in Your Living Room While It's Cold Out</a> &mdash; It's also hard to find your fitness motivation when the weather outside is stormy and cold. So don't even bother braving the elements during the cold months because you can sufficiently break a sweat in your living room!</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_doing_yoga_000072594381.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-cheap-home-workout-hacks-for-people-with-no-equipment-and-no-room">12 Cheap Home Workout Hacks for People With No Equipment and No Room</a> &mdash; Getting in shape should not require spending thousands of dollars in equipment, supplements, and workout attire. Just throw on some comfy clothes and use your body weight as the only resistance you need.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-tips-for-getting-the-best-morning-workout">7 Tips for Getting the Best Morning Workout</a> &mdash; This is for all you early birds out there. If you rise with the early morning sun, then make the most of that time with a stellar morning sweat sesh!</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-have-a-great-late-night-workout">6 Ways to Have a Great Late-Night Workout</a> &mdash; And for you night owls (of course I haven't forgotten you!) make use of the darkness with these p.m. workout hacks.</p> <p><em>What other workout hacks keep you motivated to move? Share with us in the comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-99-best-fitness-hacks-of-all-time">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-119-best-fitness-hacks-for-busy-people">Flashback Friday: The 119 Best Fitness Hacks for Busy People</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-95-best-ways-to-get-fit-for-free">Flashback Friday: The 95 Best Ways to Get Fit for Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-81-best-tips-for-saving-big-at-the-grocery-store">Flashback Friday: The 81 Best Tips for Saving Big at the Grocery Store</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-ultimate-green-workout">The Ultimate &quot;Green&quot; Workout</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/36-workouts-you-can-do-in-your-living-room-while-its-cold-out">36 Workouts You Can Do in Your Living Room While It&#039;s Cold Out</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Health and Beauty exercise fbf fitness fitness goals flashback friday frugal fitness Health workouts yoga Fri, 04 Mar 2016 11:00:12 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1667380 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Things Yoga Can Teach You About Money http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-yoga-can-teach-you-about-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-things-yoga-can-teach-you-about-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000076935935_Large.jpg" alt="doing yoga and learning about money" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whether or not yoga is your thing, you're probably familiar with it. The practice of yoga has become popular enough that most people know how yoga is done and how to do the basic poses.</p> <p>What you may not know is that you can learn a lot about life in general while holding a pose like downward dog or happy baby. When you practice, you study not only the yogic postures, but also things like balance, flexibility, and mindfulness. And you can apply all of these concepts outside of the studio, too.</p> <p>Here's how I've come to apply things I've learned from yoga to my personal financial life. I hope these ideas help you think about your money a little differently, maybe with a little more Zen! (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-zen-concepts-thatll-improve-your-finances?ref=seealso">4 Zen Concepts That'll Improve Your Finances</a>)</p> <h2>1. Balance Is Central</h2> <p>My favorite yoga teacher will tell us to center ourselves not just over the left foot, but over the toes, or the heel. Slowly, I've come to realize that how I balance myself changes the posture subtly, often bringing in more of a stretch or making it more challenging.</p> <p>Just as how you balance is key in the yoga studio, it's helpful when you're thinking about money, too. Most of us want more money, but what if we were to focus somewhere else? For instance, is there enough to pay the bills? Are we spending more thoughtfully than we did last year? And what would making more money actually add to our lives?</p> <p>These questions, and more, can help us think in a more balanced way about our money. This, in turn, will free us to change spending or saving habits that might be harming us.</p> <h2>2. Proper Preparation Is Key</h2> <p>A good yoga teacher will prepare you for what is coming, both in the current class and in the future. There's a reason that harder poses often come near the end of a yoga class &mdash; it's because you wouldn't be ready for them before that. You have to open your hips, your hamstrings, your shoulders, and whatever else is needed for that final, challenging pose of the flow. If you don't prepare, you'll hurt yourself and hamper your ability to progress in the long term.</p> <p>Money works the same way. What are your long-term financial goals? And your short-term goals? These aren't just going to happen. They require planning and preparation ahead of time. Just like in yoga, you need to do specific things now so you can reach your goals later. Want to travel around the world? Start saving. Need a specific kind of of mortgage, come spring? Look at starting the application now. Proper planning will help ensure your long-term financial health, just like a proper flow will help ensure that you stay healthy enough to continue practicing yoga.</p> <h2>3. Flexibility Is Crucial</h2> <p>Most people who practice regularly see an increase in their flexibility. And people like me &mdash; who just thought they weren't flexible at all &mdash; begin to see how this rise in flexibility influences their entire lives.</p> <p>Similarly, the more flexible you can be with your money, the better prepared you'll be financially. Financial flexibility has to do with your ability to change how you spend based on your current circumstances. If you empty your emergency fund because your car breaks down, can you flex for a few months until the fund is replenished? And if you realize you need more than you'd anticipated for a down payment, can you find the funds and flex on a few things until you've made up the difference?</p> <p>Financial flexibility pertains to small things, like how much coffee you buy and how often you dine out. But it also pertains to bigger things, like when you decide to buy a house, how you structure your investments, and more. Just as flexibility and strength are tied in yoga, they often come together financially, too. And you want your money to be as strong as it can be.</p> <h2>4. Self-Care Is Always Worth It</h2> <p>People start yoga for all different sorts of reasons, but they often continue because of self-care. Doing yoga feels good. It makes your body feel better, even alleviating long-term aches and pains. And it's often meditative, offering quiet and space that most of us don't have in our daily lives. So, in learning yoga, we often stumble onto self-care, too.</p> <p>Learning self-care through yoga often helps people take better care of themselves financially. This can mean spending money on things &mdash; even little things &mdash; that make you feel good. A sweet smelling candle, a good book, or a cup of coffee can all be acts of self-care. It can also mean using more discretion about how you spend your money, so that you aren't always worrying about debt, overdraft fees, and how to pay the bills. Once people get started on a path to self-care, it often spills into their entire lives.</p> <h2>5. Mindfulness Will Help You Reach Your Goals</h2> <p>Mindfulness means staying aware in the present, and is often stressed in the yoga studio. Living in the now, paying attention to how your body is moving, what you need to do, and how to stay in a pose, can all help you learn to remain present &mdash; even when so many things pressure you to think about them, instead.</p> <p>More than anything else, mindfulness is a path to self-mastery. It teaches us to choose where we focus, rather than letting the mind run willy nilly wherever it wants. And when we learn to focus in yoga, we learn a skill that can help us financially, too.</p> <p>Being mindful &mdash; and therefore a master of ourselves &mdash; can help us stick to a budget. It can help us save up for something we really want. It can help us get through a frugal season without taking on debt. And it can even help us buy Christmas presents, because it will help us focus on the recipient and what they want, rather on everything we might like to buy for them. In the end, being mindful will help us save more, invest better, and be happier with what we have.</p> <p>When we are open, willing learners, yoga can improve not only our physical health, but our financial health as well.</p> <p><em>How does your yoga practice tie to your financial life? What yoga lesson can you start applying to your personal finances today?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-yoga-can-teach-you-about-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-morning-mantras-that-ll-help-keep-your-finances-on-track">8 Morning Mantras That’ll Help Keep Your Finances on Track</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats">The 5 Best Exercise Mats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-waste-your-money-on-these-6-workout-snacks">Don&#039;t Waste Your Money on These 6 Workout Snacks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-and-keep-amazing-posture-by-doing-these-10-stretches-today">Get — and Keep — Amazing Posture by Doing These 10 Stretches Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-yoga-blocks">The 5 Best Yoga Blocks</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Life Hacks Health and Beauty budgeting fitness life lessons money habits yoga zen Tue, 19 Jan 2016 10:00:02 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1638732 at http://www.wisebread.com The 5 Best Exercise Mats http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-best-exercise-mats" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/women_excerise_mats_000043211204.jpg" alt="Women using the best exercise mats during workout" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>A quality exercise mat is a staple item in any home gym. Whether you like to stretch in the morning, do yoga at night, or follow a home fitness regimen, you need an exercise mat. There are different exercise mats for different purposes. You can choose the right size, thickness, and texture to fit your personal preferences and fitness needs.</p> <h2>What Is an Exercise Mat?</h2> <p>Exercise mats are special non-slip mats used during any fitness activity to protect your hands, feet, back, and body while you complete your favorite exercises. Along with cushioning you from the hard floor underneath, exercise mats can also help reduce injuries and prevent your hands and feet from slipping so you can get the most out of your workout and safely perform any stretch. Exercise mats are affordable and should last you a long time. To get the best value from the mat, it&rsquo;s important to clean it after every use with water or a yoga mat spray.</p> <p>You want to choose something that is thick enough to protect you from the hard ground underneath, but not so thick that it impairs your ability to complete a workout. In most cases, an extra-thick 1/2-inch mat is the best bet because you can complete any exercise on it without losing your balance. Some people prefer to have a thicker mat for high-intensity workouts and a thinner non-skid mat for their yoga practice, but this isn&rsquo;t absolutely necessary. It may take you some time to find which mat works best for your body, but we&rsquo;ve found the best exercise mats for every type of workout to help get you started.</p> <h2>Top 5 Exercise Mats</h2> <h3>BalanceFrom GoYoga All-Purpose Extra Thick High Density Anti-Tear Exercise Yoga Mat</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00RWFQYG0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00RWFQYG0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=L6V4CQWVLJ73R2CY"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/balance%20goyoga.jpg" width="200" height="147" align="right" alt="" /></a>As Amazon&rsquo;s #1 best seller in yoga mats, the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00RWFQYG0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00RWFQYG0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=L6V4CQWVLJ73R2CY">BalanceFrom GoYoga All-Purpose exercise mat</a> will double as the perfect yoga mat. With nearly 1,200 five-star reviews on Amazon, the BalanceFrom GoYoga All-Purpose Extra Thick High Density Anti-Tear Exercise Yoga Mat commonly tops the lists for the best yoga mat. It is 71 inches long and made of high density foam material. It has non-slip traction and cushion on both sides, so you can use either side, making the mat last much longer.</p> <p>It is also thicker and more comfortable than most other mats, making it especially ideal for people with a sensitive back. It is moisture-resistant, so you can easily clean it with soap and water. Over time, the mat can develop marks and tears, but should be usable for years. The lightweight mat comes with a carrying strap for easy transport. It is available in seven colors and backed by a 100% satisfaction guarantee and two-year warranty.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00RWFQYG0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00RWFQYG0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=L6V4CQWVLJ73R2CY"><em>Currently $19.95 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Sivan Health and Fitness Extra Thick NBR Comfort Foam Yoga Mat</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GFZHVW4/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00GFZHVW4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=OTQPCDAGAXQZYIAA"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/sivan%20mat.jpg" width="200" height="136" align="right" alt="" /></a>As Amazon&rsquo;s #1 best seller in Pilates floor mats, the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GFZHVW4/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00GFZHVW4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=OTQPCDAGAXQZYIAA">Sivan Health and Fitness 1/2-Inch Extra Thick 71-Inch Long NBR Comfort Foam Yoga Mat</a> is ideal for all your favorite exercises, including yoga and Pilates. It is also one of the top rated items on Amazon and one of the thickest mats on the market, providing better impact absorption. The extra thick mat is made with specially designed memory foam, so it will optimally protect your knees and joints.</p> <p>The mat has a ribbed surface on one side and a smooth surface on the other side, so it will grip the floor to improve your workout and prevent injuries. While it does have non-slip on one side, some reviewers found that it can still slip on hardwood floors. Over time, the mat can also develop marks and tears. The durable, long lasting material is moisture-resistant and easy to clean, so it will last you for years. It is available in seven different colors and comes with an integrated carry strap, so it is easy to transport.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GFZHVW4/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00GFZHVW4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=OTQPCDAGAXQZYIAA"><em>Currently $19.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Everlast Folding Mat</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000O2GCS8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000O2GCS8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=JNPEK7MFQP2GJSB6"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/everlast.jpg" width="131" height="200" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000O2GCS8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000O2GCS8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=JNPEK7MFQP2GJSB6">Everlast Folding Mat</a> is 72 inches long and is very thick and springy, which is best for high-intensity workout programs. The thick cushioning will give way under your feet, so it might not be the right fit for standing yoga poses. The mat does not have a non-slip bottom, so it can slip a bit on hardwood floors.</p> <p>It has a non-absorbent shell, which won&rsquo;t absorb sweat or moisture. The sturdy mat can be easily wiped clean and will last you for years. It can be folded away for easy storage and the handle makes it easy to transport. The durable mat is comparable to the popular SPRI folding exercise mat, but costs much less. It is one of Amazon&rsquo;s best sellers, one of the top rated and &ldquo;most wished for&rdquo; items on Amazon, and is commonly recommended by fitness professionals. It is also ideal for people with very sensitive backs because of the extra cushioning. It is available in black and blue, but oftentimes, only one color is available for purchase.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000O2GCS8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000O2GCS8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=JNPEK7MFQP2GJSB6"><em>Currently $38.83 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>HemingWeigh Extra Thick Foam Exercise Mat</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008I4XFWU/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B008I4XFWU&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=EX7TNFJG7HEFKWC3"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/hemingweigh.jpg" width="200" height="161" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008I4XFWU/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B008I4XFWU&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=EX7TNFJG7HEFKWC3">HemingWeigh Extra Thick Foam Exercise Mat</a> is 70 inches long and constructed of thick foam, to make even the most intense workouts more comfortable. In fact, it is one of the thickest, most comfortable mats on the market. It has a non-slip surface on both sides that will grip the floor to prevent slipping and injuries. It will also allow you to use both sides of the mat, so it will last longer. It is moisture-resistant and easy to clean, so it will stay in optimal condition throughout the time you own it. In fact, this quality mat is designed to last longer than standard exercise mats, so you&rsquo;ll get a better deal. It is designed for use with all types of exercises and stretches, including yoga and Pilates.</p> <p>The integrated self-strapping system makes it easy to transport the lightweight mat. It is one of Amazon&rsquo;s best sellers, as well as one of the top rated items on Amazon. It is also the most popular exercise mat found in yoga studios, fitness clubs, schools, and home gyms.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008I4XFWU/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B008I4XFWU&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=EX7TNFJG7HEFKWC3"><em>Currently $22.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Prosource Premium Extra Thick High Density Exercise Yoga Mat</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00FY0H2XE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00FY0H2XE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=V5THF4Y6MOED7DCQ"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/prosource_0.jpg" width="200" height="127" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00FY0H2XE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00FY0H2XE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=V5THF4Y6MOED7DCQ">Prosource Premium 1/2-Inch Extra Thick 71-Inch Long High Density Exercise Yoga Mat with Comfort Foam</a> is one of Amazon&rsquo;s best sellers for a reason. With more than 1,200 five-star reviews, it is the perfect mat for nearly any type of activity. It is very thick and can help protect extra sensitive joints, but is still thin enough to be used during yoga poses. The Comfort Foam technology allows for better impact absorption and the non-slip surface keeps the mat in place while you are exercising. The high performance mat is twice as thick as standard yoga mats and can last significantly longer. The durable moisture-resistant surface is easy to clean, so you can keep it in optimal shape for longer. Over time, the mat can still develop marks and tears, but should be usable for years. It is available in eight colors and comes with a carrying strap for easier transport.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00FY0H2XE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00FY0H2XE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=V5THF4Y6MOED7DCQ"><em>Currently $20.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <p>And those are our recommendations for the best exercise mats. As always, be sure to check <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buying-calendar">Wise Bread's Buying Calendar</a> to learn when and how to buy just about anything!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-yoga-blocks">The 5 Best Yoga Blocks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-mountain-bikes">The 5 Best Mountain Bikes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-resistance-bands">The 5 Best Resistance Bands</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-underwater-watches">The 5 Best Underwater Watches</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-videos">The 5 Best Exercise Videos</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Lifestyle Shopping exercise mats fitness healthy living pilates product reviews shopping yoga Thu, 10 Dec 2015 10:01:06 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1619167 at http://www.wisebread.com The 5 Best Yoga Blocks http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-yoga-blocks <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-best-yoga-blocks" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_doing_yoga_000044875608.jpg" alt="Woman using best yoga block while doing yoga" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whether you&rsquo;re a beginner or have been practicing yoga your whole life, every yogi needs a good yoga block. A yoga block is ideal for standing positions because it helps bring the floor up to you. Once you have found the right yoga block, you can explore new poses, get into deeper postures, and achieve a stronger body - all with fewer injuries.</p> <p>To get the most from your yoga block, you&rsquo;ll want to find something that fits your price range, is lightweight, is made of high quality materials, has a nonslip surface or texture, and is durable enough to last you for years to come.</p> <h2>What Are Yoga Blocks?</h2> <p>Yoga blocks are foam, cork, wood, or bamboo blocks that can make you feel more comfortable in each yoga pose. They can help support your practice by helping you achieve the proper alignment, balance, and support necessary to execute complicated yoga moves. They can also help improve form and flexibility, so you can stretch further than you ever have before.</p> <p>Yoga blocks are also ideal for beginners who don&rsquo;t have the flexibility to complete complicated moves yet, as it can help you modify moves to your level of flexibility. The block can be placed under the bottom, legs, feet, hands, or between your arms and legs, depending on the pose.</p> <h2>Top 5 Yoga Blocks</h2> <h3>Gaiam Yoga Block</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000VDRQTY/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000VDRQTY&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=QTP5FUN7GIXRFBFK"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/gaiam.jpg" width="240" height="194" align="right" alt="" /></a>Gaiam is one of the most popular makers of yoga accessories, and the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000VDRQTY/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000VDRQTY&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=QTP5FUN7GIXRFBFK">Gaiam Yoga Block</a> does not disappoint. These Gaiam Yoga Blocks are one of Amazon&rsquo;s best sellers in yoga blocks. This yoga block provides balance to help with your alignment, increase strength, and help you achieve deeper poses.</p> <p>Made from durable, supportive foam and a nonslip surface, the lightweight block is large enough to sit on comfortably. It can be spot cleaned with mild detergent and air dried. It is available in a range of colors and designs to suit your personal preferences.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000VDRQTY/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000VDRQTY&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=QTP5FUN7GIXRFBFK"><em>Currently $10.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Hugger Mugger Cork Yoga Block</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000C9KZ18/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000C9KZ18&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=KIV3PHIKPWPNWZ5S"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/hugger%20mugger.jpg" width="240" height="179" align="right" alt="" /></a>If you&rsquo;re looking for an eco-friendly option that can keep up with your yoga practice, then the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000C9KZ18/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000C9KZ18&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=KIV3PHIKPWPNWZ5S">Hugger Mugger Cork Yoga Block</a> is the one for you. Hugger Mugger is a popular yoga block manufacturer, and this yoga block does not disappoint. Constructed of fast-growing, renewable cork, it is stable, long lasting, and heavyweight for added stability.</p> <p>The natural fiber and texture help provide extra grip and traction, while the rounded edges create a comfortable surface. They can even absorb sweat, so there aren&rsquo;t many disadvantages to a cork yoga block. Weighing only 1 pound more than foam blocks, the cork yoga block is still very lightweight and perfect for backbends and standing and sitting poses. Along with being the top rated yoga block on Amazon, it was also chosen as the best cork yoga block by Yogauthority.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000C9KZ18/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000C9KZ18&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=KIV3PHIKPWPNWZ5S"><em>Currently $17.95 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Shandali Recycled Foam Yoga Block</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00OYUN60I/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00OYUN60I&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=XZJHEUEETR3TI5BK"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/shandali.jpg" width="240" height="176" align="right" alt="" /></a>If you&rsquo;re looking for an eco-friendly solution, then the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00OYUN60I/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00OYUN60I&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=XZJHEUEETR3TI5BK">Shandali Recycled Foam Yoga Block</a> is right for you. Made from certified recycled EVA foam, this lightweight block is made of top quality materials and should last you a lifetime. The dense, durable block is higher than 95% of other yoga blocks on the market and has rounded edges for better safety, support, and comfort. Along with being one of the top rated yoga blocks on Amazon, it is also backed by a lifetime guarantee for your peace of mind.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00OYUN60I/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00OYUN60I&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=XZJHEUEETR3TI5BK"><em>Currently $14.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>ProSource Yoga Block</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00ET7TQU0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00ET7TQU0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=76X2GKY6P7KQFAIS"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/prosource.jpg" width="240" height="98" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00ET7TQU0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00ET7TQU0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=76X2GKY6P7KQFAIS">ProSource Yoga Blocks</a> are premium quality, lightweight blocks made of durable foam and a solid core. They have a non-stick surface and are soft, scratch-proof, and can be used on any surface. These studio quality yoga blocks are large enough for you to comfortably sit on. They come in a set of two, so you can stack them or keep one at home and take one to the studio. They can improve your yoga practice and provide a quick, effective remedy for back and hip issues.</p> <p>Along with being the bestselling yoga blocks and one of the top rated yoga blocks on Amazon, they are also some of the best sellers on the market.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00ET7TQU0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00ET7TQU0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=76X2GKY6P7KQFAIS"><em>Currently $12.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Gaiam Be Inspired Yoga Block</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00B1OJQ7C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00B1OJQ7C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=35L35TWXOZKVSUKV"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/gaiam%20be%20inspired.jpg" width="240" height="180" align="right" alt="" /></a>Gaiam is one of the most popular makers of yoga accessories and have a number of highly reviewed items, and the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00B1OJQ7C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00B1OJQ7C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=35L35TWXOZKVSUKV">Gaiam Be Inspired Yoga Block</a> doesn&rsquo;t disappoint. It features the high quality materials and performance you&rsquo;ve come to expect from Gaiam.</p> <p>What makes this one unique is the addition of inspirational words and quotes, which can help improve your practice and inspire you. The functional, inspirational yoga block is made from durable, supportive foam and is large enough to sit on comfortably. You can easily spot clean this with a mild detergent and air dry.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00B1OJQ7C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00B1OJQ7C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=35L35TWXOZKVSUKV"><em>Currently $10.22 on Amazon</em></a></p> <p>And those are our recommendations for the best yoga blocks. As always, be sure to check <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buying-calendar">Wise Bread's Buying Calendar</a> to learn when and how to buy just about anything!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-yoga-blocks">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats">The 5 Best Exercise Mats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-resistance-bands">The 5 Best Resistance Bands</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-videos">The 5 Best Exercise Videos</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-kettlebells">The 5 Best Kettlebells</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-mountain-bikes">The 5 Best Mountain Bikes</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Lifestyle Shopping fitness fitness accessories product reviews yoga yoga blocks Wed, 09 Sep 2015 09:00:27 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1472452 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 Quick Workouts You Can Do During Commercial Breaks http://www.wisebread.com/9-quick-workouts-you-can-do-during-commercial-breaks <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-quick-workouts-you-can-do-during-commercial-breaks" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/family_exercising_000027499027.jpg" alt="Family exercising together during 2-minute commercial break" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The average half hour television show boasts a full eight minutes of commercials. Double that for your hour-long program, and you have a whole lot of time spent just sitting around. Even if you watch a single half hour show each day, that's almost an hour of extra time in your week when you could be doing something to better yourself. Specifically, something better for your health!</p> <p>So we've compiled the following workouts, all of which can be done in just two minutes each to fit between commercial breaks. Mix and match them during your next television session to add some good-for-you activity to your life. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-at-home-exercises-will-give-you-a-gym-quality-workout-for-free?ref=seealso">These At-Home Exercises Will Give You a Gym-Quality Workout For Free</a>)</p> <h2>1. Explosive Cardio</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/hVOm5Thoazg" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>This <a href="https://youtu.be/hVOm5Thoazg?t=1m15s">cardio workout</a> starts with high knees and quickly progresses into side skaters for a wide range of motion. Standard burpees kick the routine up a notch until its intense finish that adds an explosive hop to the mix. Phew! <em>Game of Thrones</em> is back on!</p> <h2>2. Micro Workout</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/WmrIEmQQoyA" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>Whether you're sitting on the couch or at your desk, you can totally fit this quickie <a href="https://youtu.be/WmrIEmQQoyA?t=1m18s">total body workout</a> into a break. Squats give your legs a super boost, and you want them nice and deep to get the most benefit. Next, use your desk or dining room table for some standing push-ups before switching to one-armed planks in the same position.</p> <h2>3. Ab Blaster</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/7Qf9pPcGGwE" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>For more targeted work, try these <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Qf9pPcGGwE">ab-blasting moves</a>. You'll begin with your legs elevated at a 90-degree angle for crunches. Then, contract your abs while you pulse your legs to work on the lower set of muscles. The rest are modifications with challenging static holds.</p> <h2>4. Total Toner</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/VNKOJqT24uc" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>You can do this <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VNKOJqT24uc">toning workout</a> in the time it takes to brush your teeth. Jump your feet back to a plank position and complete a couple push-ups at whatever position feels the most comfortable. The Superman pose is new to me, but I'm surprised how well it firms the muscles on the back of my body with zero impact.</p> <h2>5. Leg Lifter</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/IUQ-nOO7SrA" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>This <a href="https://youtu.be/IUQ-nOO7SrA?t=1m">killer leg workout</a> is completed in just two power-packed minutes. The exercises are 30 seconds each, starting with a wide sumo squat. After that, do some lunges &mdash; making sure to keep your core engaged. These exercises both progress from slow to fast to get your heart pumping.</p> <h2>6. Arm Sculpter</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/DqtPHn1MnYQ" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>Don't forget your arms! You can sculpt and gain strength with a <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DqtPHn1MnYQ">fast arm routine</a> and a couple light dumbbells. Begin with a few jumping-jacks to get your cardio going, then move to alternating overhead presses, hammer curls, and tricep work. Don't have weights? Try using soup cans or water bottles!</p> <h2>7. Best Basic</h2> <p>If you'd rather not follow a video or instructor, try something basic like jumping rope, walking in place (or on a treadmill), or doing a mix of body weight workouts you know by heart. When in doubt, just keep moving for two minutes, whether it's doing crunches, push-ups, jumping jacks, side jumps, or even just dancing around the room with your kids.</p> <h2>8. Super Stretch</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/87KgosW6oHo" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>Switch up your mini-workout series with a <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87KgosW6oHo">good stretch</a>. These yoga poses flow from one to the next in quick succession. Control your motion and keep proper posture for best results. Your muscles will feel incredibly refreshed and relaxed after this one.</p> <h2>9. Big Breath</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/YaHClc2D5Tw" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>Bonus: Most of us don't fit relaxation into our day, yet it's important to take time &mdash; even two minutes &mdash; to slow down and restore. This <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YaHClc2D5Tw">breathing sequence</a> will help wind down your mind and body or, alternatively, recharge your batteries before the day's next big task. Inhale, exhale, and repeat.</p> <p><em>What productive activities do you do while watching the tube?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-quick-workouts-you-can-do-during-commercial-breaks">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-trick-yourself-into-enjoying-cardio">8 Ways to Trick Yourself Into Enjoying Cardio</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-fitness-gadgets-actually-worth-the-money">5 Fitness Gadgets Actually Worth the Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-clever-ways-to-improve-your-home-gym">10 Clever Ways to Improve Your Home Gym</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-cheap-home-workout-hacks-for-people-with-no-equipment-and-no-room">12 Cheap Home Workout Hacks for People With No Equipment and No Room</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-a-great-workout-for-free-with-11-simple-moves">Get a Great Workout for Free With 11 Simple Moves</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Productivity cardio commercial breaks exercise working out yoga Fri, 17 Apr 2015 13:00:10 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1388452 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Easy Ways to Work Stretching Into Your Daily Routine http://www.wisebread.com/10-easy-ways-to-work-stretching-into-your-daily-routine <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-easy-ways-to-work-stretching-into-your-daily-routine" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/office-stretching-83397736-small.jpg" alt="office stretching" title="office stretching" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I'm a certified, registered yoga teacher at the 500-hour level, and I've been teaching yoga and meditation for 10 years. Take it from me: Flexibility is <a href="http://www.spine-health.com/wellness/exercise/stretching-back-pain-relief">an important aspect of everyone's health</a>.</p> <p>In fact, most of my students find me because they have low levels of flexibility that are causing them pain. Muscles that are flexible help to reduce pain in the body, particularly back pain, and they support us in the movement of everyday life.</p> <p>But building and maintaining flexibility takes continuous effort over a long period of time. If we try to build flexibility too quickly, we're very likely to get an injury. I use the plastic wrap analogy with my students to explain this concept. Stretch a piece of plastic wrap between your hands. If you stretch it quickly, the plastic wrap breaks. If you stretch it very slowly, it lengthens. Our muscles have a similar quality. They must be stretched little by little over a long period of time in order to lengthen. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-exercises-to-do-at-work-that-dont-make-you-look-silly?ref=seealso">10 Exercises You Can Do at Work That Won't Make You Look Silly</a>)</p> <p>All of that means stretching ought to be done in small increments each day. Here are 10 ways I work on my flexibility daily without changing my normal routine.</p> <h2>1. Good Morning</h2> <p>Before I even get out of bed, I spend a minute or two stretching. You can do this lying down or sitting up. I turn my neck from side to side, stretch my arms out and up over my head, and then pull my knees into my chest to take my legs to each side. It gives me a way to know what areas of my body need a bit of extra attention for the day.</p> <h2>2. Before and After Exercise</h2> <p>I've seen a number of different opinions on whether it's more beneficial to <a href="http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/11/16/the-right-reasons-to-stretch-before-exercise/?_php=true&amp;_type=blogs&amp;_r=0">stretch before</a> or <a href="http://www.shape.com/fitness/cardio/8-common-running-myths-busted">after exercise</a>. I spend a few minutes doing both because that's what feels best to me. Stretching before I exercise let's me know which parts of my body feel stiff. Those are areas where I need to pay the most attention and care when I work out. I stretch after as well because I'm warmed up and am able to feel the full flexibility benefits of the workout. Again, that's another opportunity for me to check in to see if the areas that felt stiff prior to working out still feel that way. If they do, then I know it's something I may be need to get checked to see if there's any kind of injury.</p> <h2>3. Shower Time</h2> <p>After exercise, I start my day with a warm shower. This is another excellent time to stretch a bit because the warmth from the water helps soothe achy muscles. I take my torso from side to side and focus on my neck, shoulders, and low back.</p> <h2>4. Desk Time</h2> <p>I love my work as a writer, so I'm prone to sit at my desk and move very little throughout the day if left to my own devices. To combat this, I have a timer set for every hour. When that timer goes off, I get up from my chair, take a spin around my home office, and do some stretches for my whole body, paying special attention to my neck, shoulders, back, and hips because those are the areas that get most stiff when I sit for long periods of time.</p> <p>Even while I'm sitting, I squeeze in some seated stretches. I twist from side to side to relieve my back and do a gentle forward fold while seated, letting my torso rest on my thighs. I find they're especially helpful when I'm searching for the right words to string together. Try some of these <a href="http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/adult-health/multimedia/lower-back-stretches/vid-20084700">seated stretches</a> from the Mayo Clinic that can easily be done in the office.</p> <h2>5. During Phone Conversations</h2> <p>I always stretch when I'm on the phone. Depending upon how my body feels, I sometimes do those stretches standing up or sitting down. I use that time to catch up with friends, family, or colleagues while working on my flexibility.</p> <h2>6. In the Kitchen</h2> <p>Because I work from home, I prepare most of my own meals in my kitchen. The time I spend standing at my kitchen counter preparing food is another great time to get in a bit of stretching. While at my counters, I use a wide-legged stance that provides a great stretch for my thighs and hips. These muscles get especially tight because I sit for most of my day. I use good posture when bending down to get items from my cabinets below the counter. I also try to use the step stool only when I really need it, stretching for items on shelves that are a bit out of my reach.</p> <h2>7. Social Stretch</h2> <p>In New York City, where I live, socializing often involves heading to a restaurant, cafe, or local bar to catch up with friends. Lately I've been trying to to have more active friend time. I live close to two large parks, so I suggest a walk together, or if I know a friend of mine is into specific kinds of exercise, I suggest going to a class together at the gym. This way I get in my social, exercise, and flexibility training all in one shot.</p> <h2>8. Television Watching</h2> <p>I love television. For many people, TV time is down time. It's also a fantastic opportunity to stretch and work on your flexibility. Stretching is passive and doesn't require our full attention so we can watch the news or our favorite shows while doing both seated and standing stretches.</p> <h2>9. Podcast and Audiobook Listening</h2> <p>I'm a big fan of podcasts and audiobooks. I load them up on one of my mobile devices and hit the streets for a walk or play them while I stretch out in my living room. There's an added benefit of doing exercise while listening: I actually retain the information more efficiently than if I'm sitting on the subway or bus listening to the content, so stretching while listening boosts my brain as it improves my flexibility. A recent study at the University of British Columbia showed that <a href="http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/regular-exercise-changes-brain-improve-memory-thinking-skills-201404097110">exercise improves memory and thinking</a>.</p> <h2>10. Good Night</h2> <p>I use stretching to bookend my days. Just as I spend a minute to two in bed stretching after I wake up, I also spend another minute or two before I go to sleep. I have one last opportunity for the day to see if any parts of my body feel stiff and that stretching helps me to get comfortable for a good night's sleep.</p> <p>Add up all of these bits of stretching and I get in <em>at least</em> 15 minutes of time to improve my flexibility every day. A great deal of it is acquired while I multitask because stretching is an activity that doesn't require my undivided attention. Consciously work stretching in bit by bit throughout your day as part of your normal routine and you'll see your flexibility grow at just the right pace without adding another item to your to-do list.</p> <p><em>How do you get your stretching in every day?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/christa-avampato">Christa Avampato</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-easy-ways-to-work-stretching-into-your-daily-routine">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-and-keep-amazing-posture-by-doing-these-10-stretches-today">Get — and Keep — Amazing Posture by Doing These 10 Stretches Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-find-free-or-cheap-yoga-classes">Where to Find Free or Cheap Yoga Classes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats">The 5 Best Exercise Mats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-yoga-can-teach-you-about-money">5 Things Yoga Can Teach You About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-quick-workouts-you-can-do-during-commercial-breaks">9 Quick Workouts You Can Do During Commercial Breaks</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty flexibility stretching yoga Mon, 08 Sep 2014 11:00:05 +0000 Christa Avampato 1205247 at http://www.wisebread.com You Might Be Breathing Wrong — Here's What You Should Do Instead http://www.wisebread.com/you-might-be-breathing-wrong-heres-what-you-should-do-instead <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/you-might-be-breathing-wrong-heres-what-you-should-do-instead" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/breathing-461235173-small.jpg" alt="breathing" title="breathing" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="152" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Take a deep breath &mdash;&nbsp;a really deep breath. For many of my yoga and meditation students, breathing is one of the hardest parts of class. Some are shallow breathers, meaning they only take in the bare minimum amount of breath needed to survive. Quite a few of my students also have a habit of holding their breath, especially when in challenging poses or when they're faced with a difficult situation in life. <a href="http://www.npr.org/2010/12/06/131734718/just-breathe-body-has-a-built-in-stress-reliever">Both of these habits</a> reduce the oxygen levels in our bodies and increase the levels of stress chemicals and carbon dioxide. This leaves us lethargic and induces depression. It also suppresses the immune system. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/relax-and-conquer?ref=seealso">Relax and Conquer</a>)</p> <p>Taking just a few moments to breathe deeply and fully every day gives us more energy, improves our mood, cleanses the body of toxins, staves off disease, and helps us to stay active.</p> <p>Here's a five step plan to get the most benefits from every breath.</p> <h2>1. Adjust Your Posture</h2> <p>The first step to correct breathing is efficient and optimal posture. We need to adjust the architecture of the body to allow the lungs to fully expand.</p> <p>Decide if you feel most comfortable lying down on your back, sitting, or standing. If lying on the back, choose a supportive surface such as a yoga mat placed on the floor. Let the body fully relax into the mat and notice the natural curves of the spine.</p> <p>If sitting down, choose a supportive chair or sit cross-legged on a yoga mat with the back against the wall.</p> <p>If standing, feel all four corners of both feet sinking down evenly into the ground. It standing or sitting, imagine that there's a string in the middle of the crown of the head that slightly lifts you up and check to see that the chin is parallel to the ground. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-and-keep-amazing-posture-by-doing-these-10-stretches-today?ref=seealso">Get &mdash; and Keep &mdash; Amazing Posture With These 10 Stretches</a>)</p> <h2>2. Relax Your Face, Neck, Shoulders, and Ribs</h2> <p>Now that you have the body in correct alignment, relax all the muscles of the face, neck, shoulders, and ribs. With these areas relaxed, the nasal passages, throat, chest, and muscles between the rib bones relax as well, and you are ready to receive as much air as your lungs can hold.</p> <h2>3. Check Your Belly, Chest, and Collar Bones</h2> <p>While the lungs are the primary organ for breathing, other parts of the body get involved as well. As the lungs expand, the belly expands, the chest rises, and even the collar bones lift slightly. As we exhale, the collar bones drop, the chest falls, and the navel moves back toward the spine when the belly relaxes. When all three of these areas move with the breath, we call this a <a href="http://www.yogaindailylife.org/esystem/yoga/en/020200/exercise-levels/the-full-yoga-breath/">Full Complete Breath</a>.</p> <h2>4. Recognize Nasal Breathing Versus Mouth Breathing</h2> <p>There is a biological difference between breathing in and out through the nose and in and out through the mouth even though both breathing mechanisms involve the lungs.</p> <p>When we breathe in and out through the nose, we <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3449485">actually stimulate the brain</a>. The left nostril is connected to the right side of the brain (the creative, big-picture side of the brain) and the right nostril is connected to the left side of the brain (the analytical, detail-oriented side of the brain.) By breathing in and out through the nose, we actively engage the entire brain.</p> <p>When we bypass the nose and breathe in and out of the mouth, the brain is less stimulated. Breathing in and out through the mouth is a good option when we are overheated or when we encounter sizzling summer temperatures. This is because breathing in and out through the mouth is an excellent way for the body to release excess heat quickly and effectively.</p> <h2>5. Try These Three Specialized Techniques</h2> <p>Depending on your needs, you can use three different techniques for three different benefits.</p> <h3>When You Need to Relax</h3> <p>The relaxation response is triggered by belly breathing. To get a sense of this technique, place both hands on the belly. When you breathe in and out, allow most of the body expansion to happen in the belly rather than the chest. This is a technique to practice when we feel nervous, fearful, or stressed.</p> <h3>When You Need More Energy</h3> <p>The breath is also a great tool to give us some added pep in our step. While belly breathing helps us calm down, concentrating more of our breathing movement in the chest stimulates the nervous system. To receive this benefit, place both hands on the heart and concentrate most of the body movement associated with the breath in that area. This technique works if you feel tired or mentally or physically depleted.</p> <h3>To Get the Most Out of Your Workout</h3> <p>Breath is, of course, an integral part of any workout. As a general rule, breathe in when you expand any part of the body (for example, lifting the arms up overhead) and breathe out when you contract any part of the body (for example, curling the arms toward the body with weights in the hands). This lets the breath act as a tool to align with and support our physical movements.</p> <p>Breathing is one of only two actions the body does consciously and subconsciously. (Blinking is the other one.) As a result, we often take conscious breathing for granted, though it can work wonders for both our mental and physical health. It's a tool we can use and a barometer of how we're feeling. Use it wisely with the steps and techniques above.</p> <p><em>Have you tried to improve your breathing? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/christa-avampato">Christa Avampato</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/you-might-be-breathing-wrong-heres-what-you-should-do-instead">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-yoga-can-teach-you-about-money">5 Things Yoga Can Teach You About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/super-solid-yoga-tricks-to-help-you-relax">Super Solid Yoga Tricks to Help You Relax</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-and-keep-amazing-posture-by-doing-these-10-stretches-today">Get — and Keep — Amazing Posture by Doing These 10 Stretches Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-cheap-ways-to-lower-your-blood-sugar">13 Natural and Easy Ways to Lower Your Blood Sugar</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-find-free-or-cheap-yoga-classes">Where to Find Free or Cheap Yoga Classes</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks Health and Beauty breathing deep breathing posture relaxation yoga Thu, 12 Jun 2014 15:00:52 +0000 Christa Avampato 1142439 at http://www.wisebread.com Get — and Keep — Amazing Posture by Doing These 10 Stretches Today http://www.wisebread.com/get-and-keep-amazing-posture-by-doing-these-10-stretches-today <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/get-and-keep-amazing-posture-by-doing-these-10-stretches-today" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/yoga-99433787.jpg" alt="stretching" title="stretching" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Did you know your posture has the power to make you look up to <a href="http://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/features/how-to-look-thinner-instantly">10 pounds thinner</a>? It's true! And that's just one of the many benefits associated with standing up straighter. Anything from projecting confidence to protecting your bones and ligaments from uneven wear and tear can be the result of better overall alignment.</p> <p>The best part? You can start working on better posture today with these 10 simple stretches. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stop-slouching-5-ways-to-improve-your-posture?ref=seealso">Stop Slouching! 5 Ways to Improve Your Posture</a>)</p> <h2>1. Cat / Cow</h2> <p><img width="605" height="181" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/catcow.jpg" /></p> <p>If you've ever been to a yoga class, this asana is one of the first in the sequence &mdash; so it's a perfect starter. Just get on your hands and knees with a neutral spine, then slowly alternate between <a href="http://www.yogajournal.com/poses/2468">Cat</a> and <a href="http://www.yogajournal.com/poses/2467">Cow</a>. Not only will these poses help with posture, but they will also give your core a good stretch and even <a href="http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/ART03444/CatCow-Pose.html">improve your breathing</a>. And if you've never been to yoga class, &quot;asana&quot; means posture or pose.</p> <h2>2. Downward Dog</h2> <p><iframe width="605" height="340" frameborder="0" src="//www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/w43eUOjHkpA" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>Another yoga classic, <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w43eUOjHkpA">Downward Facing Dog</a> is a wonderful pose for stretching the spine. If you're in an actual yoga class, you might ask your instructor to evaluate your technique to find any postural imbalances and to help correct them. As I've heard many instructors say: It's not important if your heels touch the ground. Focus instead on your back and hip alignment.</p> <h2>3. Chin to Chest</h2> <p>Your neck also plays a large role in your overall posture. Stretching is super easy. While standing straight with a neutral spine, slowly lower your chin to your chest and hold for 30 seconds while inhaling/exhaling. Then return and repeat a few more times. It feels good because it's helping release those tense muscles! You can perform this stretch side to side as well with the same method. I've just been advised by yoga instructors not to roll my head into position to avoid compression of nerves and arteries.</p> <h2>4. Shoulders Back</h2> <p><iframe width="605" height="340" frameborder="0" src="//www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/kjXlGXVdvDI" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>One of the worst posture offenders is sitting, especially at a desk all day (sound familiar?). This <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kjXlGXVdvDI">upper back, neck, and shoulder stretch</a> is quick and can be discretely performed in your chair at work. The presenter encourages people to perform this stretch every 20 minutes &mdash; so it's a great reminder to sit up straight and mind your posture. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-no-sweat-workouts-perfect-for-the-workplace?ref=seealso">10 No-Sweat Workouts Perfect for the Workplace</a>)</p> <h2>5. Glute Bridge</h2> <p><iframe width="605" height="340" frameborder="0" src="//www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/viyoVBR_J5c" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>The hips and overall pelvis are also a huge part of posture and definitely negatively impacted by sitting for long stretches. This <a href="http://www.swolept.com/posts/fixing-anterior-pelvic-tilt-posture-tricks-to-make-your-butt-and-gut-smaller">comprehensive guide</a> to fixing anterior pelvic tilt is beyond helpful and provides several stretches and exercises that promise to &quot;make your butt and gut [appear] smaller.&quot; My favorite? The <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=viyoVBR_J5c">glute bridge</a>.</p> <h2>6. Spine Stretch</h2> <p><iframe width="605" height="454" frameborder="0" src="//www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/eplZywfWJyM" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>This <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eplZywfWJyM">Pilates-based spine stretch</a> is for beginners. The instructor has modified the stretch to be performed against a wall for &quot;accountability&quot; &mdash; in other words, to make sure your spine is straight. I also like her addition of leg variations to work on hamstring flexibility. After all, everything in the body is connected and can contribute to better posture.</p> <h2>7. Forward Fold</h2> <p><img width="605" height="404" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/forwardfold-92101580.jpg" /></p> <p>Lengthen your spine and stretch the back of your entire body by simply standing and bending into <a href="http://www.yogajournal.com/poses/478">Uttanasana</a> or Forward Fold. It can feel frustrating when trying to get your fingertips to touch the floor &mdash; so forget that part and just &quot;cross your forearms and hold your elbows.&quot; The more times you perform this stretch over time, the better it feels (and the deeper you stretch).&nbsp;</p> <h2>8. Cobra</h2> <p><img width="605" height="403" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/cobra-163080153.jpg" /></p> <p>Another Hatha yoga pose that enhances posture is the <a href="http://www.cnyhealingarts.com/2010/12/24/the-health-benefits-of-bhujangasana-cobra-pose/">Cobra</a>. The benefits of this position are twofold. First, it stretches shoulder, chest, and abdominal muscles. Second, it strengthens the spine, shoulders, and arms. Hissing and sticking out your tongue while in your cobra is optional.</p> <h2>9. Pectoral Stretch</h2> <p><iframe width="605" height="340" frameborder="0" src="//www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/KSqIY0lRAvU" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>Don't forget to stretch your pecs. The massage therapist leading this exercises challenges viewers to think of how we open our bodies into <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KSqIY0lRAvU">this soothing position</a>. &quot;Not often&quot; is usually the answer. All you need is a doorway and a few minutes to get going.</p> <h2>10. Kneeling Hip Flexor</h2> <p><iframe width="605" height="454" frameborder="0" src="//www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/nyBEANBOkvY" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>There's more love for the lower body with this <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nyBEANBOkvY">essential stretch</a>. The hip flexors are those muscles on the front of the pelvis, and they often get tight with sitting or too much exercise (as a runner, I can confirm!). Kneel down onto your knees, one foot in front, and then sink your pelvis toward the floor. That's all you have to do!</p> <p><em>Do you have any favorite, posture enhancing stretches? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-and-keep-amazing-posture-by-doing-these-10-stretches-today">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats">The 5 Best Exercise Mats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-yoga-can-teach-you-about-money">5 Things Yoga Can Teach You About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-yoga-blocks">The 5 Best Yoga Blocks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-more-quick-tips-and-tricks-for-better-posture">7 More Quick Tips and Tricks for Better Posture</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-99-best-fitness-hacks-of-all-time">Flashback Friday: The 99 Best Fitness Hacks of All Time</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty asana fitness posture stretching yoga Thu, 15 May 2014 08:36:24 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1139410 at http://www.wisebread.com Where to Find Free or Cheap Yoga Classes http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-find-free-or-cheap-yoga-classes <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/where-to-find-free-or-cheap-yoga-classes" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/yoga ball.png" alt="Woman on yoga ball" title="Woman on yoga ball" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="236" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Yoga is one of the most popular forms of exercise, but yoga classes have a reputation for costing an arm and a leg, especially at the trendiest yoga studios. However, don&rsquo;t write off yoga classes right away &mdash; there are ways to get classes for cheap.</p> <p>While <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/half-moon-full-wallet-free-online-yoga-videos">free online yoga videos</a> are a great way to supplement your routine, I would definitely recommend going to a class, especially if you are a beginner to yoga. It is important to move through the poses with the proper alignment while engaging the proper muscles. Without an instructor&rsquo;s feedback, you are more likely to injure yourself while doing yoga (lower back injuries are common).</p> <p>Don&rsquo;t worry if you can&rsquo;t afford those $15-20 drop-in classes at your local yoga studio &mdash; read on to discover how to get free or cheap yoga classes. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/super-solid-yoga-tricks-to-help-you-relax">Super Solid Yoga Tricks to Help You Relax</a>)</p> <h2>1. New Student Promotions</h2> <p>Never join a yoga studio without first asking about its new student promotion. Almost every yoga studio has one, in varying degrees of value. Some offer the first class for free. Others offer an entire month of unlimited yoga (you can drop in on any of their classes, as many times as you want) for the price of two or three drop-in classes. When I first moved to my current town, I was fortunate to find a yoga studio that offered 90 days of unlimited yoga for $90. Check websites like <a href="http://www.tkqlhce.com/click-2822544-10817658">Groupon</a> for deals offered at studios in your city. These deals are perfect for beginner students, as they enable you to build a foundation in the basic poses, preparing you to do your own practice at home.</p> <p>A friend of mine spent her first two weeks of yoga going around to all of the local yoga studios and taking advantage of their first-free classes. She got a range of instructional styles and gained a basic familiarity with the yoga poses without having to drop a penny.</p> <h2>2. Community Yoga Classes</h2> <p>Yoga has become so popular that it is offered everywhere, from community centers to your local community college to the YMCA. Check listings for cheap or free community yoga classes. Some of these classes are by donation, so you pay what you can. If your apartment building has an exercise room, it may also offer cheap yoga classes for residents.</p> <p>My yoga studio offers a $5 community yoga class, as well as a $10 family class, every week as a way to give back to the community. If you&rsquo;re following a yoga video, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-the-wii-fit-a-cheap-workout">Wii Fit</a>, or a book at home, these cheaper classes are a good way to refresh your knowledge of yoga, ask for instructor advice, and join a community of yoga enthusiasts.</p> <h2>3. Create Your Own Yoga Class</h2> <p>If you have several friends who are all interested in doing yoga, you might want to consider hiring a private yoga instructor who can come to your home and teach you and your friends. Each of you might end up paying less than if you joined a yoga studio, while the yoga instructor ends up getting paid more. You essentially cut out the middleman (the yoga studio), which gives you more personalized attention and better value.</p> <h2>4. Buy Blocks of Yoga Classes</h2> <p>Usually, it is cheaper to buy a block of yoga classes (a card for 10 or 20 classes) than to drop in on each class. Look for a yoga studio that offers class cards with no expiration date. This means that you can spread out your classes over several months without having to worry about losing the remaining value on your card. You can do yoga by yourself at home, and go to a class every week or two to keep yourself inspired.</p> <p>Once you&rsquo;ve become comfortable with the basic yoga poses, you&rsquo;re well on your way to developing your own practice. You won&rsquo;t need to go to classes as often, although you may want to go once in a while to a cheap yoga class just because, well, it&rsquo;s a great deal.</p> <p><em>Where have you found great deals on yoga classes?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/camilla-cheung">Camilla Cheung</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-find-free-or-cheap-yoga-classes">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-legit-ways-to-use-the-gym-for-free">8 Legit Ways to Use the Gym for Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-yoga-blocks">The 5 Best Yoga Blocks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats">The 5 Best Exercise Mats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-119-best-fitness-hacks-for-busy-people">Flashback Friday: The 119 Best Fitness Hacks for Busy People</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-great-body-weight-exercises-and-why-you-should-do-them">20 Great Body Weight Exercises (and Why You Should Do Them)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Lifestyle affordable exercise yoga yoga classes Tue, 07 Jun 2011 10:24:18 +0000 Camilla Cheung 563957 at http://www.wisebread.com Super Solid Yoga Tricks to Help You Relax http://www.wisebread.com/super-solid-yoga-tricks-to-help-you-relax <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/super-solid-yoga-tricks-to-help-you-relax" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/5197332965_4b69ee79ef_z.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We are totally slammed pretty much all the time &mdash; bombarded by things to do, obligations to fulfill, places to go. There&rsquo;s hardly a moment to relax and stretch out our muscles. Finding even a second of respite can be a challenge. And that&rsquo;s why I&rsquo;m all about the short spurts of yoga exercises to help me relax and get focused on my inner core.</p> <h3>Take a Deep Breath</h3> <p>Deep breathing is one of the easiest and fastest ways to relax and focus. Start at the bottom of your lungs and work your way up to the top. Fill your entire diaphragm with air, hold for a few moments, and then release slowly in reverse &mdash; starting at the top and working your way back down. With each breath out, picture any negativity or stress leaving your body. With each breath in soak up positivity and thoughts of what you want to have in your life. It&rsquo;s a great way to clear your mind quickly.</p> <h3>Chant Your Stress Away</h3> <p>Not just for the practicing meditator, who has way more discipline than I do to meditate for half an hour or an hour twice a day. Lots of books out there offer a ton of options for how to pick a mantra. I personally like Sanskrit words not only because they sound so beautiful, but because they are so rarely spoken. Books like <em>The Bahagavad Gita</em> or <em>The Guru Gita</em> have several chants and phrases you can choose from. Whatever resonates with you is the right one to use. Once you&rsquo;ve picked a word that works, chant it for five or ten minutes every day or use it silently in your head whenever you encounter a moment of stress.</p> <h3>Visualize Where You Want to Go</h3> <p>Another way to develop stronger concentration skills is by practicing visualizations. Pick a quiet, calm spot to sit for a few minutes and decide what you would like to focus on. You can focus on a work issues, improving your health, or solving a relationship problem. Picture in full detail everything you would like to have happen exactly as you would like to have it happen. Focus on how you feel. If you feel good and joyful, you&rsquo;re on the right track. If you&rsquo;re feeling stress, perhaps you&rsquo;re trying to force something that isn&rsquo;t ready to happen. Do the same visualization every day for 30 days and see what happens.</p> <h3>Strike a Pose</h3> <p>Another sweet way to get your focus on is to hit the mat and get in a few poses. Shoulder stands and balancing poses, like the tree pose where you balance on one leg while focusing your eyes on a distant point right ahead of you, help you concentrate better. They can also improve your flexibility and your strength.</p> <p>Take a few moments to yourself and build some relaxation into your day.</p> <p><em>What kinds of tricks do you use to relieve stress and gather calm in a crazy, hectic day?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sasha-a-rae">Sasha A. Rae</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/super-solid-yoga-tricks-to-help-you-relax">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/you-might-be-breathing-wrong-heres-what-you-should-do-instead">You Might Be Breathing Wrong — Here&#039;s What You Should Do Instead</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats">The 5 Best Exercise Mats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-find-free-or-cheap-yoga-classes">Where to Find Free or Cheap Yoga Classes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-can-do-today-to-be-happy">10 Things You Can Do Today to Be Happy</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-apps-that-pay-you-to-exercise">5 Apps That Pay You To Exercise</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Personal Development relaxation stress management yoga Fri, 11 Mar 2011 13:00:08 +0000 Sasha A. Rae 503125 at http://www.wisebread.com Half Moon, Full Wallet: Free Online Yoga Videos http://www.wisebread.com/half-moon-full-wallet-free-online-yoga-videos <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/half-moon-full-wallet-free-online-yoga-videos" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/morning_yoga.jpg" alt="Woman doing yoga in the morning" title="Woman doing yoga in the morning" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="145" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Practicing yoga can improve your strength, flexibility, and focus. It can also remove between $5 and $20 from your wallet per class. I already have a membership to a gym that unfortunately doesn't offer yoga classes, but I occasionally like to add yoga to my workout routine. When I do, I turn to one of these online yoga videos:</p> <h2>YOGAmazing Video Podcast</h2> <p>This is the yoga resource I use the most. Run by Chaz Rough, a yoga instructor from Kentucky, the <a href="http://www.yogamazing.com/podcast.html">YOGAmazing Video Podcast</a> provides yoga classes that range from 10 minutes to over a half-hour long. Each class is on a different theme, from &ldquo;Yoga for Beginners&rdquo; to &ldquo;Yoga for Upper Body Strength&rdquo; to faster-paced classes like &ldquo;Morning Flow.&rdquo;&nbsp;</p> <h2><em>Yoga Journal</em> Practice Podcast</h2> <p><em>Yoga Journal</em> provides <a href="http://www.yogajournal.com/podcast/">20-minute classes</a> that can be downloaded as video or audio. The classes feature host Kathryn Budig narrating the poses while another yoga practitioner demonstrates. These videos tend to incorporate more advanced poses than YOGAmazing, and classes include &ldquo;Strengthen Your Core,&rdquo; &ldquo;Arm Balances,&rdquo; and sequences for morning and evening.</p> <h2>Yoga on YouTube</h2> <p>Searching for yoga on YouTube provides a variety of classes and instructional videos from <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yf1MtRZx_J4">30-minute weight loss workouts</a> to short seven-minute videos from <a href="http://www.youtube.com/user/yogatoday">Yoga Today</a>'s &ldquo;Light Practice&rdquo; series to &ldquo;Steamy Hot Yoga,&rdquo; which appears to be much less focused on the &ldquo;yoga&rdquo; part, and more concerned with the &ldquo;steamy hot&rdquo; (and I'm not talking in a Bikram heated-room way).</p> <h2>Netflix</h2> <p>Okay, this isn't technically free, but if you already have a <a href="http://www.netflix.com">Netflix</a> account, multiple yoga videos are available through their instant-stream service.</p> <h2>A Note for First-Timers</h2> <p>If you are completely new to yoga, it's worthwhile to pay for a few in-person classes to learn the basic poses. Yoga can push you to move in ways you haven't before, and taking a class gives you the opportunity to have a seasoned practitioner adjust your movements so you know that you're getting the poses right. Once you understand how, for example, a downward-facing dog pose should feel, it's easier to repeat the pose in your own home. Many popular daily deal sites, such as <a href="http://www.dpbolvw.net/click-2822544-10817658">Groupon</a> and Living Social, frequently feature discounted yoga-class packages that would be great for getting up to speed.</p> <p>If you've never done yoga before, you'll also need to purchase a yoga mat. Some of the videos do suggest having a yoga belt or block for poses as well, but if you're just starting with yoga, I'd recommend in only purchasing a mat first.</p> <p><em>Do you use online yoga videos? Know of any good resources I missed here?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/meg-favreau">Meg Favreau</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/half-moon-full-wallet-free-online-yoga-videos">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-find-free-or-cheap-yoga-classes">Where to Find Free or Cheap Yoga Classes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats">The 5 Best Exercise Mats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-yoga-can-teach-you-about-money">5 Things Yoga Can Teach You About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-quick-workouts-you-can-do-during-commercial-breaks">9 Quick Workouts You Can Do During Commercial Breaks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-waste-your-money-on-these-6-workout-snacks">Don&#039;t Waste Your Money on These 6 Workout Snacks</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty exercise at home workout yoga Fri, 31 Dec 2010 13:00:10 +0000 Meg Favreau 410517 at http://www.wisebread.com Time to Get Down With Your Inner Zen http://www.wisebread.com/time-to-get-down-with-your-inner-zen <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/time-to-get-down-with-your-inner-zen" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/yoga-peace.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="236" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The world is awash in a sea of chaos, a sea that can carry you far off your path if you let it. But you don&rsquo;t have to. You have more control over yourself and your life than you may think. Certainly outside circumstances can be harsh and scary sometimes, economic and personal challenges can pop up all around you, and you can lose a small measure of our confidence as it seems life is swirling out of your control. That&rsquo;s where the pursuit of peace comes in. Inner peace, the kind that comes from inside and shines out of you no matter what&rsquo;s happening. And there are some really great, easy and not-too-expensive ways to relax and rejuvenate without breaking your wallet. <br /> <strong><br /> Tune into the Yoga Scene</strong></p> <p>Adopting a regular yoga practice can calm your monkey mind and cultivate a great sense of peace in you. It can also lower your blood pressure and increase your flexibility. A bonus point is that yoga comes in dozens of flavors, so you can pick the one that suits you best. If you&rsquo;re looking for a gentler and quieter form, check out Hatha yoga, which fosters a deep sense of relaxation and release. Or you can check out Raja yoga, which takes you deeper into self-realization and opens up channels to your inner spirit. For the more active among you, Kundalini yoga is your ticket. With deep and fast movements, this one will rev you up and send you off in the right direction. Then there&rsquo;s Hot Yoga at temperatures above 100&deg; Fahrenheit to warm you up and limber you out. </p> <p>While some traditional yoga classes can get pretty pricey, DVDs can offer the same great workout without the cost. Gather a group of friends together for a once-a-week yoga session. You can support each other and reduce your stress at the same time. Or check out your local YMCA. Memberships are inexpensive and usually include free access to yoga classes. </p> <p><strong>Boost Your Body with Qigong</strong></p> <p>Raise your energy with some daily qigong. This ancient Chinese practice works on increasing the amount of chi, or energy, in your system and directing it toward what you want. Most of the practice focuses on healing the body, but the energy boost you get from qigong pops up everywhere. You find yourself happier for no real reason, relaxed in the midst of a chaotic environment, even Zen-like in the face of a confrontation. That&rsquo;s if you do it regularly and consistently.</p> <p>Slow, smooth movements dominate the practice, so this is only for the most patient among us. The Eight Piece of Brocade is among the simplest series of movements to learn and do, while something like the Hand of the 18 Luo Han can require more practice to master. No matter which one you choose, though, doing them every day will boost your health. Your blood pressure will go down, your circulation will increase and your immune system will improve. Perfect for cold-ridden winter months. </p> <p>As with yoga, a lot of gyms offer qigong classes or you can check out DVDs. A quick call to a local qigong school or a glance through their website can tell you more about the different kinds of qigong. Taking an introductory course to get your started and then doing the practice on your own also works well. </p> <p><strong>Master the Art of Meditation</strong></p> <p>When your mind is racing with a cacophony of houghts and your life is swirling with responsibilities and obligations, it can seem like a luxury to take a few minutes to &hellip; do nothing. Think nothing. To just be. But getting a quiet moment or two in a day can mean all the difference between living on the edge and biting off a loved one&rsquo;s head or responding calmly to things that come up. Because something always comes up. </p> <p>To get started, you can merely sit quietly in a place where you won&rsquo;t be disturbed and watch what your mind does. You can also try one of the many kinds of meditation out there. For instance, insight meditation engages the mind by giving it a specific thought to chew on while you sit. Others, such as Siddha yoga, involve chanting from spiritual texts. The Guru Gita is a famous Hindi manuscript that followers have used for hundreds of years and there are dozens of great places across the U.S. where you can find a meditation group to chant with. One of my favorites is the <a href="http://www.symcseattle.org/">Siddha Yoga Meditation Center of Seattle</a>. Aim for 30 minutes of meditation a day for the best benefits, but start with 10 if your mind operates in overdrive most of the time. Plus, there&rsquo;s no right or wrong way to meditate. The biggest challenge is to find a time and a spot to sit in silence and let your thoughts wash over you.</p> <p>If you&rsquo;re looking for group support or a good meditation instructor, check out the local Buddhist temples. You can also search for meditation groups on the Internet. Or check out your local Unitarian Universalist Church, which often hosts a free weekly meditation group. Be creative and try out several until you find one that works for you. </p> <p>Let&rsquo;s get started. There&rsquo;s no time like the present.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sasha-a-rae">Sasha A. Rae</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/time-to-get-down-with-your-inner-zen">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-find-free-or-cheap-yoga-classes">Where to Find Free or Cheap Yoga Classes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats">The 5 Best Exercise Mats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-yoga-can-teach-you-about-money">5 Things Yoga Can Teach You About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-quick-workouts-you-can-do-during-commercial-breaks">9 Quick Workouts You Can Do During Commercial Breaks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-and-keep-amazing-posture-by-doing-these-10-stretches-today">Get — and Keep — Amazing Posture by Doing These 10 Stretches Today</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Art and Leisure meditation qigong stress relief yoga Fri, 01 Jan 2010 18:00:13 +0000 Sasha A. Rae 4290 at http://www.wisebread.com