The Breath: Reduce Stress and Find Your Inner Peace Part 2

The Breath:  Reduce Stress and Find Your Inner Peace – part 2

As we continue our experiment with Pranayama, let us examine more deeply the benefits of reduced stress and the impact on our bodies, our psych and our lives.

From the Mayo Clinic and other medical reports, we learn that stress may be affecting our health without our awareness. There are many common effects of stress on the body including headaches, muscle tension, chest pains, fatigue and sleep problems.  Stress can have many negative impacts on our bodies and contribute to serious health issues like high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and diabetes. Our psyche, sometimes defined as our human soul, mind or spirit, is the reflection of our being in the universe. It is our mental state. Stress can cause many issues including anxiety, restlessness, irritability, sadness or depression. Our lives, which are always a challenge to keep in balance, can be thrown way off balance by continued stress. Stress can eventually lead to destructive life styles and behavior like over or under eating, drug or alcohol abuse, and social withdrawal.

So how can pranayama help with stress? Pranayama quiets the mind and allows the mind to rest. Through pranayama, one can experience an expansion of the mind and freshness in ones perspective. Pranayama keeps us focus on our life force, the breath, and keeps us in the present moment, which is all we truly have since the past is gone and the future is yet to be. A great deal of stress is generated from living in the past or the future.

So here is another pranayama to practice called four-part breathing. To start, find a quiet calm place to sit and begin to become aware of your breath.  Four part breathing consists of an inhale, a hold, an exhale and a hold. Observe your breath without judgment. Exhale all the breath out of the body. Inhale through the nose for a slow count of four.  Hold your breath in the body for a slow count of four.  Exhale through the nose for a slow count of four.  And then keep the breath out of the body for the same count of four. Repeat again with the inhale.  Repeat this four-part breath a minimum of eight cycles for optimal benefit.

You may find that the last part, the holding of the breath out of the body, to be the most difficult. Sit in the quiet with this difficult part and think about why you are experiencing these feeling.  Pranayama can open up blocks in our thinking and change the old thinking patterns that we are repeating.  After the pranayama, check in with yourself, become aware of your feelings and see if you feel less inner stress.

Monthly Membership and Rate Increase at Concordia

In effort to create balance in the lives of both Concordia’s students and teachers, the drop-in Yoga class rate will be increased from $5 to $10 on November 1st, 2012. Nancy, Lindsey, Elizabeth, and Sandwich all agree that affordable Yoga is vital to local residents. We strive to offer engaging, creative, quality Yoga classes to the local community for an affordable price. Through membership, you will still be able to takes Yoga classes for $5 or less depending on how often you practice. For those who attend classes less regularly, you will still experience excellent instruction in beautiful surroundings for far less than the average drop-in rate for classes in the U.S.

Class running time will be increased from 60 minutes to 75 minutes and are offered daily.

Membership cards are available for $90 and are good for unlimited classes for a one month period. You can purchase your membership card from any Concordia Yoga teacher. Members receive other benefits such as discounts on Do Yoga St. John events and merchandise.

We, the teachers at Concordia, are passionate about Yoga. We come from different backgrounds, yet each of us has experienced the transformative power of Yoga.  Strength, confidence, inner peace, contentment, improved relationships, physical wellness, and pain management are only some of the benefits we have all gained as a result of our regular practice. When one’s quality of life improves so profoundly through a simple practice, one naturally wants to share these boons with others. We believe that a community of increased love, generosity, mindfulness, balance, and selflessness naturally leads to greater resources and abundance for all.


Schedule of Classes

Monday – 7:30 and 9 AM

Tuesday – 7:30 and 9 AM

Wednesday – 7:30 and 9 AM

Thursday – 7:30 and 9 AM

Friday – 7:30 and 9 AM

Saturday – 7:30 and 9 AM

Sunday – 9 AM until November 25th, then 7:30AM followed by Yoga Brunch




Do Yoga St. John Survey 2012

Do Yoga St. John plans to bring monthly workshops, events, retreats, lectures, films, and more to our island. Please take a moment to let us know what you are interested in attending, where you would like to see these events hosted, and what food, beverages, music, and services you would like offered. Namaste!

The Soundtrack of Your Life

Your days of struggling to find good music that complements your yogic lifestyle are over. YogiTunes is a digital download store featuring US and world music specifically selected to complement yoga, dance, meditation, massage, and a wellness-based lifestyle.

Alex King-Harris, Craig Kohland, and Amani Friend bring over 15 years of industry leading experience in creating and recommending music for top yoga instructors. Their custom designed digital music store appeals to the consciousness community who want a selection content to complement and enhance their lifestyle needs.

With thousands of handpicked albums and artists, YogiTunes launches with a huge pool of music that will be constantly evolving with fresh deliveries from a wide array of record labels. YogiTunes fairly compensates artists and record labels with prevailing rates in the digital download industry – encouraging news for music fans who want to sustain a broad based wealth of great music.

One of the highlights of YogiTunes is the Yoga Teacher Playlist – a selection of songs picked by yoga instructors for use in their classes. What makes a good yoga playlist is its ability to follow and support the various intensities of a yoga routine. Wellness enthusiasts are typically first exposed to the music attending classes or workshops, but often don’t know where to buy the compilations of their instructors.

YogiTunes solves this by featuring the playlists of certified yoga instructors across the country for students and other teachers to purchase and download. A broad group of the most highly respected teachers in the country and around the world have signed up and will be creating playlists on a regular basis. Shiva Rea, Sadie Nardini, and Hemalayaa Behl are just a few of the world-renowned instructors featured on the site.

YogiTunes is run and supported entirely by active members of the yoga community who are dedicated to fostering community and positive social change through the power of music and yoga.

The founders have collectively produced, contributed to, and recorded over 70 releases under various names including Rara Avis, Shaman’s Dream, and Desert Dwellers. They frequently are featured at major yoga retreats and gatherings. YogiTunes was unveiled at Wanderlust California in Squaw Valley, Lake Tahoe, 2011 among the nation’s premier yoga and music festivals.

visit YogiTunes at


Visiting Teacher Offers Potpourri of Yoga and Lifestyle Classes

Join us in welcoming visiting teacher Lisa Brodrick to the USVI. Lisa is here to conduct training in Radiant Child Yoga – a comprehensive  30 hour training program designed for yoga teachers interested in teaching children yoga. During her stay, she will be offering a potpourri of Yoga and lifestyle classes to the public. To register or for more information, contact:

Jennie Alvarez

Lisa Brodrick encountered yoga and began her path as an adolescent, over two decades ago, and knows Yoga as the conduit for joyfully uniting body, mind and souls.  When not teaching Yoga to children and adults around the world as a Registered Child Yoga Trainer or as a E-RYT 500, she calls Asbury Park, New Jersey home.  Lisa looks forward to sharing the joy of yoga with her Caribbean sisters and brothers!

Friday, October 12, 2012, 6:30-9:30 p.m.
Raw food vegan yogic lifestyle cooking class
Cost:  $40 – Location: Barefoot Buddha, St. Thomas

Lisa Broderick, will share her passion by teaching us how to prepare delicious, healthy raw vegan foods for living a yogic lifestyle while we enjoy a multi-course dinner!

Saturday, October 13, 9 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
Community children’s yoga class
Donations given to Kidscope – A child advocacy organization
Location: Wisdom Waves, Compass Point Marina, St. Thomas

Led by visiting yoga teacher Lisa Broderick for Children ages 5 -8

Saturday, October 13, 2-5 p.m.
Maha Shakti Workshop
Cost: $35 – Location: Wisdom Waves, Compass Point, St. Thomas

Maha Shakti is the Great Divine Energy that animates all beings. MahaShakti Yoga offers creative and dynamic classes structured around the rhythm of the breath and energy of the moment.

Students of all levels are empowered to experience the Shakti – universal source of breath and being and to take a new understanding of the world in their daily lives. Practitioners experience teachings that are both classical and innovative inspired by the Krishnamatocharya lineage, Bhakti (Yoga of devotion) in its many forms, Tantra, Indian classical dance, and the creative free-flow movement that is inspired by Maha Shakti herself.

A typical class will include:

  • Asana (body posture) mainly in Vinyasa form (one asana flowing to the next, connected by the breath)
  • Pranayama (connection and understanding of the vital energy through breathing exercises)
  • Naada (sound chanting; music; basic mantras)
  • Mudra (ritual gesture)
  • Bandha (energetic locks)
  • Yoga philosophy
  • Inspiration
  • Relaxation
  • Concentration techniques


One free week of Yoga during National Yoga Month

Join the millions of people across the world practicing yoga in September 2012 to celebrate National Yoga Month. Since 2008, Yoga Month has expanded into a nationally recognized awareness campaign and national observance, contributing tools to inspire health and harmony in life through yoga. This year, the Yoga Health Foundation, the nonprofit organization coordinating Yoga Month, plans to offer an unprecedented number of one week free yoga passes.

“Experience is a powerful teacher,” explains Yoga Health Foundation founder Johannes R. Fisslinger, “so we decided to give people across the country the opportunity to try yoga for themselves.”

The numerous benefits of yoga include stress management, increased flexibility, relaxation, stronger muscles and connective tissue, among many others. A regular practice encourages an overall well being that many yogis from all walks of life can attest to.

These immense health benefits of yoga have been proven countless times, yet the Yoga Health Foundation challenges people to experience yoga for themselves and share its positive physical and mental effects. Through one free week of yoga passes, National Yoga Month provides the tools for beginners to try yoga, and for experienced yogis to expand their practice.

Whether just beginning or continuing a journey through yoga, Yoga Month provides the perfect opportunity to discover yoga’s simple, unique health benefits firsthand.

“Preventative wellness can be accessed by simply unrolling a yoga mat!”


In 2008, the Department of Health and Human Services designated September as National Yoga Month, one of a select number of national health observances. That same year, thousands of yoga and health enthusiasts participated in a 10 City Yoga Health Festival Tour featuring yoga classes, lectures, music, entertainment, exhibits. Since then, the initiative has taken root as a global awareness campaign, educating, inspiring and motivating people to achieve a healthy lifestyle. Yoga Month is coordinated by the Yoga Health Foundation.

To receive your week of free yoga, just show up at any Concordia yoga class and ask for your Yoga Month Card. For a schedule of classes, click here.   Yoga Month Cards are available to new students only.

During National Yoga Month, one of a select few national health observances, millions will come together for free events and activities. Festivities will take place across the U.S., with hundreds of studios, teachers, individuals and organizers taking part in their own hometowns. The events are all designed to educate people about the mind and body benefits of yoga practice.

“We are all looking for ways to take an active role in managing our health. There are readily available solutions that don’t necessarily require insurance or even a doctor,” said Johannes Fisslinger, co-founder of National Yoga Month. “Preventative wellness can be accessed by simply unrolling a yoga mat!”


Global Mala

St. Thomas Global Mala and Body, Mind, Spirit Healing Fair

Saturday, September 22, 2012
Global Mala Yoga for Peace and Body, Mind, Spirit Healing Fair
Location: Magen’s Bay, Shed 3

We are combining two awesome events into one beautiful day!

Do Yoga St. John is organizing transportation for any St. Johnians interested in participating in this event. Please call Nancy at 340-775-0533 or email her at for details.

12 -5 p.m.

Body, Mind, Spirit Fair! The purpose of this event is to promote Health, Wellness and Peace in our community. Through this event we will raise awareness as to holistic healing modalities and the community practitioners who offer such these services in the VI.  There will also be 30 minute classes throughout the day of yoga, meditation, Tai Chi, Qi Gong, Zumba, and more. Enjoy delicious, nutritious vegetarian and vegan food and drinks in a beautiful, peaceful, relaxing environment.  The proceeds raised will be donated to Ananda Nilayam, Center for Consciousness on St. Thomas.

4 -6 p.m.
Starting with the international event, Global Mala Yoga for Peace, we will have a variety of yoga teachers leading us in 108 Sun Salutations with the intention of dedicating this practice to Peace within ourself, in our relationships, our community and our World.

The Power of 108 by Shiva Rea

108 has long been considered a sacred number in yoga and the world’s spiritual traditions such Buddhism, Jain, Sikh, Muslim, Taoism and Hinduism all have malas of 108 with Christian rosaries being made up of 54. Traditionally, malas, or garlands of prayer beads, come as a string of 108 beads (plus one for the “guru bead,” around which the other 108 beads turn like the planets around the sun). A mala is used for counting as you repeat a mantra—much like the Catholic rosary.

Renowned mathematicians of Vedic culture viewed 108 as a number of the wholeness of existence. This number also connects the Sun, Moon, and Earth: The average distance of the Sun and the Moon to Earth is 108 times their respective diameters. Such phenomena have given rise to many examples of ritual significance.

According to yogic tradition, there are 108 pithas, or sacred sites dedicated as parts of Shakti’s body, throughout India. Sacred texts are structured around this number of unity with 108 Chapters of the Rg Veda, 108 Upanishads 108 Primary Tantras. and 108 marma points, or sacred places of the body. There are There are many pilgrimage places within India that incorporate 108 or the auspicious 1008 as part of the sacred space such as the 108 dance postures or karanas carved within Chidambaram or the 1008 steps leading to the Devi Chamundi Hill in Mysore.

The power of 108 is honored in several different ways: mantra, namaskar, prostrations Offerings that can me made as the full 108 mala or in numbers related to a mala. There is a profound ripple effect of coming together as a mala across backgrounds, traditions and cultures.

A mala is a sacred circle, within one’s one breath, one’s community, all beings on this circular earth, in our circular solar system, spinning through our spiral universe.

Wherever you are – flying solo or within your family, yoga studio, larger gathering, open to experiencing the energetic field of the earth, the global vibration generated through all of the positive practices and actions near the Fall Equinox, UN International Peace Day and Peaceoneday (the global cease fire initiative).

Learn more about the Global Mala Project with National Yoga Month’s support at and


FREE DOWNLOAD – Yoga Revolution Official Music Selection

Yoga Revolution – the official CD of Yoga Month features Sarah McLachlan, Seal & Guru Singh, Anoushka Shankar & Sting, Peter Gab

You can celebrate National Yoga Month with a free song download of “Om Namo” by Eeday from the album Yoga Revolution, an amazing collaborative album, the proceeds of which help support Yoga Health Foundation’s efforts to provide yoga and fitness programs for underserved youth.

Yoga Revolution: The official CD of Yoga Month, Yoga Revolution™ features an incredible mix of original songs by international recording artists – including Sarah McLachlan, Ziggy Marley, Peter Gabriel, Michael Franti, Sheryl Crow, Krishna Das, Anjelique Kidjo, Seal & Guru Singh, Anoushka Shankar & Sting – all brought together to promote the benefits of yoga, music and a healthy and balanced lifestyle. Proceeds help support Yoga Health Foundation’s effort to provide yoga and fitness programs for underserved youth.

EarthTones: EarthTones is a non-profit organization committed to transforming the human spirit through the power of music and film. We produce and support the production of emotionally compelling content while partnering with top level talent, like-minded organizations and large scale entertainment platforms to engage, inform and inspire people across the globe.

The Global Mala Yoga for Peace Project

The Global Mala Yoga for Peace Project serves to unite communities on every continent and from every tradition by gathering together with yogic practices based on the sacred cycle of 108, forming a mala of collective consciousness and call to action around the Earth. Join in on September 22nd as the yoga world honors and unites with the UN International Peace Day.

Shiva Rea, yoga teacher and catalyst for the Global Mala Project says, “Yoga is one of the few common denominators for millions of people around the world; together we are creating a circle around the Earth and dedicating our energy to peace.”

Last year, Global Mala events were held in over fifty countries around the world. In Bali, New York, Belgium, Holland, France, Australia, and Canada yogis sponsored charities such as a meditation centre in Ladakh, Northern India, a yoga teaching program for HIV positive women in Rwanda, drought affected children in East Africa, Schools Without Borders worldwide and people with disabilities or illnesses.

We believe that transformative change, whether in the individual or in society, can occur only through the medium of deeply personal participation. We achieve being through doing. Everyone is invited to practice and play. We make the world real through actions that open the heart.