Don't Miss the next Teacher Training. Columbus classes beginning January 10, 2014

Is Your Gu Gone?

In yoga lingo, guru means:  gu=dark + ru=lightIn yoga lingo, guru means:

gu=dark + ru=light

A guru is someone who leads herself others from darkness (out of the gu) into light.

But how?

You can start ru-ing your way out of the gu by simply recognizing what keeps you stuck….

  • In a pose
  • A relationship
  • Or a job

Underneath, there’s often fear.  Fear of uncertainty, change, failure, consequences, you name it.  When the mind sees fear, it kicks into protection mode—protection from the worst possible outcome—death.

But the reality is that fear is often a signal that we are on the brink of massive transformation.  In fact, fear is often the fuel that rockets us into transformation!

Yet while our hearts may be calling us to a strike out in a new way, our minds find every reason to quiet the very ideas that excite us, and our fear.

That’s called playing it safe.  Or not playing at all.  If a born musician doesn’t play music because he’s afraid of failure, is it any wonder that he’s battling depression? No pill can take that away.

Want to play large instead? Read my next newsletter. And join me for one of my courses where you’ll learn how to put the secrets of yoga into practice so you can live the life of your dreams.  Two great options are the Yoga Experience (on-demand) and my Yoga Teacher Explorer November 2nd.

I hope to see you there!


Laurel Hodory yoga teacher training

5 Tips to Tune Your Yoga to the Season 

yoga trainingWhen the seasons change, our yoga practice changes – if we are in tune with Nature.

Otherwise, we keep plugging along as we did in summer setting ourselves up for imbalances.

Have you experienced?

  • Anxiety or scatteredness
  • Constipation or irregular bowel movements
  • Insomnia
  • Increased aches and pains
  • Depletion or decreased energy

These are all symptoms associated with change of seasons from hot to cold (autumn), and are especially prominent in certain individuals, according to Ayurveda.


1.  Slow down. If you are an ashtangi or vinyasa lover, it’s important that you focus more on holding the poses then you do on moving quickly from pose to pose.

2. Focus on balancing poses. Fall is a season that naturally causes us to go out of balance – so you want to counter that on your mat by creating balance.

3.  Release the barrage of thoughts while practicing by focusing more intently on your breath than the pose. It’s particularly helpful to focus on the exhalation.

4.  Make sure to take ample rest at the end of your yoga practice, at least 10% of the total minutes practiced in savasana.

5.  Practice at home rather than going to class. With the mind being very active during fall season, it’s important to do things that quiet it. Plus, you’ll save yourself a hurried drive in the car. Practice being present to sensations rather than thoughts as you practice.

Love and brilliance,


Laurel Hodory yoga teacher training

Yoga: Pain Free Practice Progress 

Laurel hodory yoga teacher trainingYour yoga practice should never result in joint pain. Muscle soreness, on the other hand, is normal and quite possibly a good thing.

The poison is the cure. The way you do the yoga postures becomes increasingly more important than which postures you practice. In other words, it’s all about the journey, not the destination.

If you find that poses that used to make you feel good are now irritating, you may be practicing improper alignment for your body’s needs.

Every body is different. No matter how excellent your yoga teacher is, he or she is teaching alignment to 80% of the population. Sometimes the directions are exactly opposite to what would be most beneficial to you. Unfortunately, there’s no real way of knowing this while you’re in class, unless you get pain in the moment. Often times, the pain can surface hours or days after the initial irritation.

Tip #1 for a Pain Free Practice:


yoga pain freeAccelerate your listening. Slow down and listen very closely to the sensations in your body.  What and where do you feel sensation? Is it a good sensation, or does it make you feel unsafe or nervous?  How do you proceed when you feel this way?

Our minds are powerful tools for driving us towards our goals, and mostly this is a good thing. However, the problem lies within the fact that we live in a mind-over-matter world. We are continually rewarded for the mind overruling the body into submission, regardless of whether or not this is good for the body.

Yoga takes a very different approach. It says that the innate, intrinsic wisdom of the body is more powerful than any logical reasoning you could ever try to subject it to.  In other words, your body is a mute resource that you have probably failed to listen to for many years simply because you don’t know the language, and you were never taught to listen to it.

Join me for my Monday Mastery Series starting October 6th at The Yoga Training Center to learn more about your pain-free practice progress.

Then let me know here how your practice is going!

Love and brilliance,


Laurel Hodory yoga teacher training