Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Lazy yoga

My favorite yoga poses are the lazy ones. I'm sure I'm not the only one to call them that, but the more sensitive term would be restorative poses.

Forget about going animal with all those down dog poses, up dogs, and cat-cow breaths. Restorative poses are the ones you relax into, with the objective being, well, no objective really. Just rest.

Take legs-up-the-wall pose. Of course there's a more technical name for it: Viparita Karani. But legs-up-the-wall pose is what my yoga teacher calls it, and that's exactly what you do: Lie on your back, butt up against the wall, with legs at a 90-degree angle resting on the vertical surface. There's nothing better after a long run. I can almost hear my legs sigh, "Thank  you."

Another favorite: supported butterfly (a.k.a. Supta Baddha Konasana). Again, you lie on your back. Here, your knees are open and the soles of your feet together. Bolsters or other props are used to support your thighs. Even better is adding more bolsters, a vertical one along your spine and maybe another to support your head and neck. Then just let yourself sink into the pose. Ahhhhh.

This next pose is done at the conclusion of every yoga class I've ever been to, and it's the one I look forward to the most: corpse pose, or Savasana. Basically, you lie on your back (see the pattern?). Your legs are slightly apart and feet turned out, arms resting on the floor and slightly angled out from the body with palms up. Quiet the mind, let your muscles relax, and let the floor support you. Some call this the hardest pose of all, because it's all about doing nothing. No fidgeting. No movement. Just rest.

Don't get me wrong. I love the more active yoga sequences, the flow of asana to asana.

But sometimes, a little bit of support and intentional rest is the best exercise.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Now trending

There seems to be a trend for trends these days.

People want to know: What’s hot? What are other people reading, watching, doing? What’s the latest style, thinking, innovation?

Who are the trendsetters...and, maybe more important, who are the ones deciding what is or isn’t a trend?

Here are just a few of the many trendy places to help answer these questions:
  • TrendHunter.com – It's a TV series, a magazine, a website, and “the world's largest, most popular trend community.” It bills itself as “source of inspiration for industry professionals, aspiring entrepreneurs and the insatiably curious.”
  • Trendwatching.com, “an independent and opinionated trend firm, scanning the globe for the most promising consumer trends, insights and related hands-on business ideas.” It offers free monthly trend briefings and also a premium service that includes a trend database, annual trend report, and industry trend reports.
  • Deloitte offers its free annual technology report – Tech Trends 2013: Elements of Postdigital – examining the “ever-evolving landscape of technology put to practical business use.” Ten trends were selected that Deloitte believes can have an impact on business over the next 18 to 24 months.
This short list doesn’t even begin to touch on all the trends in fashion, music, home improvement, paint colors, baby names, health care, or vacation spots. But those trend spotters are out there, too.

It's your choice whether to go with the flow...or to set your own path. Who knows? Maybe you've got some great ideas worth emulating. Maybe you will be the next trendsetter...or the next trend spotter.