Day 20 of Amber’s Yoga Support Challenge

Welcome to day 20 of our 30 day’s of yoga support during this challenging time!

Today we’ll be exploring a powerful stress management practice, called Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR).

This simple technique involves the tensing and relaxing of all of the muscles in your body in a sequential order.   By tensing your muscles before relaxing them, you enable yourself to relax them more thoroughly after you release, letting go of physical and mental tension more effectively.

Dr. Herbert Benson is a pioneer in mind body medicine and was one of the first doctors in the 60’s and 70’s to bring alternative stress management  techniques, including progressive relaxation, into the medical arena.  Research shows that through this technique, as we move tension through the body with the ultimate goal of relaxation, we  also release psychological tension and stress, minimizing our stress reactivity and decreasing our experience of chronic stress.  Trying these practices can help to support many chronic health problems that are caused or exacerbated by stress, which I think we can safely say stress plays a role in all of our health concerns.

We can also let go of those old wounds, the stories we’re still carrying that no longer serve us.

Did you know that through a daily practice of stress release and management, we build our reserves?  We give our nervous systems a chance to re-calibrate and integrate the experiences of our lives, rather than overloading our bodies and our minds.  We also give ourselves an invitation to return to a state of equilibrium on a daily basis through our practice.

Today we’ll be moving through a shortened version, but you can take up to 30 minutes slowly moving through each part of your body separately and then finishing with a few rounds of full body tension followed by complete relaxation.  You want to make sure you give yourself at least 5 – 10 minutes to rest in the final relaxation state, inviting your awareness to follow the flow of breath, dropping deeper into a restorative place where you heal from.

To view the practice today click here

With regular relaxation breaks, over time your whole self will feel lighter, more easeful and more at home in yourself.

I would like to send out a special message to all the people at Country Haven today, I know we have lost more members of our community.  My heart is with all the families who have lost their loved ones at Country Haven.  My heart is with all the workers that are navigating this scary time.  My heart is with all those we have lost during this virus, sending them love on their journey, praying no more lives will be taken.

Thank you for joining me today, it is an honor to be with you on this journey.

You are so very loved, and cherished.

Thank you also to my husband, Jay Young, for the beautiful musical accompaniment in yesterday, and today’s videos, a little extra hug holding you in your practice.

Till tomorrow

Much love, Amber

Amber restorative picture

Day 9 Yoga Support with Amber

Sat Naam and Namaste!

Day 9!!

Today we’ll be exploring

Sufi Grind, Spinal Flex, Spinal Twist and Neck Rolls

All very accessible movement based postures to release stress and ideally bring you into a deeper place of relaxation.  All these postures can be done seated in a chair, or on your mat in a comfortable seated position.

To view the practice click here

I love these postures and often revisit them as warm – ups in many of my classes.  Let me know if you have any questions!

Your job is not to make yourself likeable, your job is to be fully yourself – a self that is honest and aware of the equal humanity of other people.  We have a world full of people who are unable to exhale fully because they have for so long been conditioned to fold themselves into shapes to make themselves likeable

– Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

From my mat to you, thank you for inspiring me, and bringing your unique light into the world!

We need you!

Love Amber

Day 5 Yoga Challenge with Amber

Namaste and Welcome to Day 5!

I’m so grateful you’re here!  

In today’s  practice we’re going to be exploring one of the primary muscles (the iliopsoas)  that crosses through our pelvic girdle.   Opening up the hips and helping to create ease in the low back as we explore our breath and movement to open space across  our pelvis.  This muscle is intimately connected with our breathing patterns, our organs of elimination, our low back, as well this muscle and the surrounding muscles often react by tensing when we experience emotional stress.

I invite you to really take your time with these movements, explore your body and the sensations you experience in the postures.  Notice how you feel emotionally as the muscles soften and release.

To view the practice click here

I’m here, holding space for YOU.

On your next breath in, please send gratitude into every cell in your physical body, gratitude for showing up for YOU today.  You are amazing!

With so much love, Till tomorrow



Gentle reminders

A gentle reminder Ashley’s Sunday morning Slow Flow class now starts at 9:00am, effective starting tomorrow morning (January 6th).  A beautiful practice to relax into your Sunday.

Please note there is also no Pilate’s class this Monday (January 7th).  Lynne’s Pilates class will be back on our schedule Monday, January 14th.

This Wednesday night (January 9th) we also start our next Wednesday night mini series (6 – 7:15pm).  Amber will be leading you through 4 weeks of mindfulness based stress management techniques, through gentle movement and relaxation practices.

We hope you are all having a wonderful first week of 2019, gently unfolding this next chapter.