Posts tagged with "Pilates"

Laughing Lotus

It was 1977 when it all started for Dana as she grew up to the sounds of Donna Summers and the Beegees. “Oh how my parents loved to dance,” she said. Dana grew up and never wanted the dance party to end, so in 1987 she opened a joint in Hell’s Kitchen called Trixies, her nickname, and the place quickly became famous for the wild spirit of celebration she and her team created. Wacky and talented musical acts came in from all over the world to sing and play the spoons. They were featured on the Today Show, Good Morning America and KathyLee & Regis. Soon after the explosion on the dance scene, Trixie, the “party girl” met yoga. At the time, Dana was doing high step aerobics, taking hip hop dance classes and she rode her bicycle everywhere. “It was surprising for me to find yoga, yet all the ingredients were always there – my love for music, movement and friends. This was my opportunity for awakening,” Dana said.

During Dana’s early years of practicing yoga, it felt like yoga was one practice and her love for dancing another. They were separate. It took years of showing up in her personal practice for her to begin to listen and trust and follow her passion to integrate movement, music, the flow of the breath, and a spiritual purpose. Finding herself and her voice was a slow process, but a natural one. Sometimes the music inspired the movement and sometimes the movement inspired the music and soon new shapes emerged — Krishna, Kali, Rainbow Warrior, oh my.

With the help and collaboration of Dana’s longtime partner, Jasmine Tarkeshi, the two cofounded and opened Laughing Lotus in New York City on a rooftop playground in 1999 and Lotus Flow, our Vinyasa style of Yoga, became a signature style where dance, devotion and discipline are the three major tenets.

The practice continues to be a fresh and creative celebration with Jasmine and all of the teachers at the Lotus. There’s an incredible architecture or form to the sequencing. It’s called freedom. There’s form and there’s formlessness and the mantra at Laughing Lotus is “Move Like Yourself.”

It’s 2012 and Laughing Lotus had a Dance Hall, a disco ball, a 40-foot graffiti wall and a Glitter Bar. It’s a community center, a spiritual community that nourishes your being, helps makes the teaching practical and teaches us all valuable lessons in sharing, empathy and seva. Today in NYC, millions of breaths later, tens of thousands of chakras opened and with over one thousand teacher graduates Laughing Lotus is having a yoga festival, a lotus reunion to gather, to share, to chant to celebrate and of course to DANCE! Here we are in 2019, and Laughing Lotus has introduceded NYC’s first ever Queens and Queers: Fluid Flow class that will live on the schedule and be offered monthly. This weekly Fluid Flow is designed for LQBTQ Community and your sparkly friends. Enjoy your Glittery Loving Yoga home where you can be YOU, connect more deeply to each other and your Highest Self. Dana’s love for the LGBTQ community has harnessed a deep connection throughout the years and with this connection, comes the newest collaboration with the K-Deer family; the first non-gender focused yoga pant, “The Dana” which has launched and can be spotted on some of the biggest influencers.

Most Embarrassing Fitness Questions

If you follow fitness trainers or enthusiasts on Instagram, we are besieged by women at the gym who look supremely confident, airbrushed and without a bead of sweat. The reality is, most of us don’t look or smell our best after a tough workout.  Not everyone is comfortable walking into a class of strangers in form-fitting gym clothes.  And what about the sounds our bodies make when we are working out?  What about those of us who want to exercise but feel we are too heavy to even begin a program?  Fortunately, we have Certified Fitness Trainer, Model Turned Fitness Expert, Instagram Fitness Guru & YouTube Sensation Vince Sant, co-founder of the online platform www.vshred.com  to answer the questions you are too shy to ask.

Why do I let out a little pee when I exercise?

Vince Sant explains that “This is very common amongst anyone who’s had a child. the term is stress incontinence, meaning you involuntarily leak out a little urine. It can happen when you exercise, laugh, or even sneeze.” First and foremost, don’t be embarrassed. Nearly every woman that’s given birth has experienced this. There are, however, two things you can do to improve stress incontinence says Vince, “Learn how to do Kegels, and practice engaging your pelvic floor in Pilates-based exercises. Both of these actions can help strengthen your pelvic floor and reduce the severity of your stress incontinence.”

Will running make my boobs sag?

 “Sag happens to all breasts that are natural. It’s normal for the collagen that keeps breasts firm to stretch out thanks to gravity, time, pregnancy, weight gain, or weight loss.” Although there’s limited research, Vince Sant says, “The up and down motion of running could logically contribute to sagging as well, but the health benefits of running definitely outweigh that possibility. If you wear the right sports bra, your breasts shouldn’t experience a lot of movement anyway. So, don’t be afraid to run!’

Why do I seem to sweat so much more than other people at the gym?

“How much you sweat is really individual, and it doesn’t necessarily mean anything positive or negative about your exercising ability,” says Vince. On average, men tend to sweat more than women, and if you are overweight you may sweat more near the end of your workout because it takes more for your body to cool itself down. Ultimately, it’s not a bad thing if you find yourself drenched in sweat while the person next to you on their machine seems to be relatively dry.

Why does running long distances make me have to poop?

Long distance running can aggravate some people’s digestive systems, particularly if you suffer from Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). But you don’t necessarily have to have pre-existing digestive issues to get some unpleasant stomach symptoms on long runs. For example, studies show that as much as 50% of runners in a 10k race experience digestive issues, including runner’s trots. It’s nothing to be embarrassed about, but there are things you can do to combat the unpleasant reality of urgent, frequent bathroom trips. Vince suggests avoiding high-fiber foods a few days before a big race, staying well-hydrated, and avoid caffeine.

Why do I tend to pass gas during certain yoga poses?

Passing gas during the occasional downward dog is extremely common. Why? You’re bending and stretching, which massages the internal organs—which can sometimes stimulate your digestion. (There’s even a yoga pose called “wind reliever). Vince recommends, limiting any high fiber snacks beforehand, and stretching before your actual class to “eliminate” ahead of time.

What’s the best way to start exercising if I am completely out of shape?

Literally just put one foot in front of the other. A Chinese Philosopher once said, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” And walking is nothing to be ashamed of. Vince stresses that “It really is exercise and there are all kinds of athletic people and celebrities in amazing shape who use it to stay that way. Get a pedometer and take at least 10,000 ‘baby steps’ a day and start improving your fitness.”

I have gym anxiety. What should I do?

There are four psychological reasons for gym anxiety: Not being sure what to do, comparing yourself to other people in the gym, feeling like people are judging you, and feeling like you don’t belong. What are a few ways to reduce gym anxiety?

Vince Sant provides some tips:

Ask friends how they feel about their own programs. You can even try to go to the gym with a friend, which is a great way to stop feeling like you’re getting judged.

Watch YouTube videos for each of the exercises you plan to do on your first day at the gym.

Wear workout clothes that you feel are both flattering and comfortable.

Pick a gym that is known for being more low key as opposed to a “meat market” or a “sceney gym.”

If going to the gym is too anxiety provoking, you can try an online fitness platform such as www.vshred.com

My Skin Chafes almost Everywhere: My Butt Cheeks, Under My Arms, Inner Thighs, How Do I Reduce the Pain?

Skin-to-skin and skin-to-clothing rubbing can cause a red, raw rash that can bleed, sting, and cause pain during your post-workout shower. Moisture and salt on the body make it worse. Underarms, inner thighs, along with the bra line (women), and nipples (men) are vulnerable spots. Vince advises, “Wear moisture-wicking, seamless, tagless gear. The fit is important. Baggy shirts have excess material that can cause irritation; a too-snug sports bra can dig into skin. Apply Vaseline, sports lube, Band-Aids or Nip Guards before you run. And moisturize after you shower. Drier skin tends to chafe more.

Am I too overweight to work out?

Forget the fancy equipment, you don’t need anything to start. Keep it low impact and rest when you need to. For example, Vince suggests the following, “Jog for 30 seconds. It doesn’t matter if you have to walk for 5 minutes to get your breath back, just do it, then jog for another 30 seconds. Do that 3 times. Then when you’ve done that for a couple of days, jog for 10 more seconds each time. Then only take 4.5 minutes to get your breath back. And as you lower the rest time, repeat it 5 times instead of 3. Keeping the overall workout time at around 20 minutes total is fine.” If you haven’t exercised for a while, the body heat, breathlessness, and sore muscles can be off-putting, but those feelings quickly become more manageable. If you have any concerns about your health and ability to work out, always consult with your doctor first.

Vincent Seth Sant

Fitness Expert & Co-Founder V Shred