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  • The Roots of GroovaRoo Dance

    Posted on September 09, 2017

    Growing up male in America, dancing was not a socially acceptable option for me. Even though I loved disco/soul/funk music as a kid, the only time I danced was in the privacy of my bedroom (with my headphones on). My parents never danced, and so I didn’t dance. I grew up like most other boys of my generation, feeling disconnected from my body, my feelings and my joy. I stayed this way until I my first great awakening on my 25th birthday.

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  • The Soul Starts Here

    Posted on July 09, 2017

    by Mora Judd

    Thank you for joining me in this virtual exploration of a sound body, mind and soul. I like to call it my Yoga Trinity. When I was introduced to yoga at the age of 14, it was a time of great need for a young, troubled girl. Two years previous to that first visit at the Ashtanga Yoga Center, I was an avid soccer player and overall athlete suffering from a broken pelvis and torn hamstring. It was caused by a party trick accident that would change the course of the rest of my life. What was prescribed as 6 months of physical therapy with crutches turned into an adolescent journey of self-sabotage and deep soul searching.

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  • 5 Reasons to Bring Your Teen to Yoga

    Posted on April 23, 2017

    Over the last 5 years in teaching yoga to teenagers, I have witnessed amazing transformations happen in my students. I have seen the shyest possible people emerge from their shells and become comfortable speaking to a group, watched timid teens face fears and challenges, and observed tightly wound individuals learning to relax and find ease in their bodies. There are countless reasons I think a yoga practice is valuable during teenage years, but here are my top 5:

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  • Thank YOU!

    Posted on March 15, 2017

    Please accept our sincerest THANKS to all of YOU who chose Luma as the #1 Yoga Studio in the Good Times Santa Cruz 2017's Best Of awards!

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  • Feeling Into Motherhood

    Posted on December 22, 2016

    by Madeleine Kerrick

    Imagine: you’re an expectant mother daydreaming about the moment when you will first meet your baby. Most likely, you envision overwhelming positive emotion, a sort of love at first sight. But what if instead, baby arrives and you feel…mildly fond? resentful? exhausted and relieved that the birth is over? Or maybe, you feel nothing at all.

    New research suggests that mothers experience a range of feelings upon meeting their newborns. A team of researchers at the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC) recently looked at how first-time American mothers described developing feelings for, and a connection to, their babies.[i] We were interested in how these women told their stories and whether there was evidence of a cultural expectation, or “master narrative,” as to how mothers should feel about their babies.

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  • Let's Talk About Sex

    Posted on December 01, 2016

    by Amy Baldwin

    I remember the first time my mom approached me with a conversation about sex. She asked if I was sexually active, and I instantly responded with a sharp 'No', overheating with embarrassment. She then let me know I could come to her when that changed, as she would take me through the necessary steps to begin birth control. Again, red-faced and mortified, I quickly responded with a defiant 'Okay, Mom', and promptly ended the conversation.

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  • Hands On? Hands Off? Adjustments in Yoga Class

    Posted on November 05, 2016

    by Valerie Moselle

    Recently one of my yoga teacher trainees shared that she was uncomfortable offering a series of hands-on adjustments to fellow trainees as part of learning to work with students in the yoga room. These adjustments included broad palm compression on the tops of the thighs, shoulders, and the gentle neck traction from behind in Savasana - three common adjustments one might expect to receive in a modern day yoga class, and ones that many students report really appreciating. “Thank you! That felt amazing," we often hear in response.

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  • Hormones in Harmony

    Posted on September 19, 2016

    by Jill Clifton

    Sex hormones (estrogen, progesterone, testosterone and the like) are what most of us think of when we hear the word hormone. But the truth is there are many different kinds of hormones in the body, and all are charged with keeping our mental and physical balance.

    Ideally, hormones nourish and support body and mind. Because hormones are interconnected in so many varying ways, we each present a unique constellation of symptoms when hormone imbalance rears its head.

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  • On Purpose

    Posted on September 01, 2016

    by Melissa Draper

    Recently a friend sent me a link to a Radio Lab podcast about the relationship between fungus and trees with a brief note: "Definitely listen to this! It's unbelievable!" Because I trust her, dig RadioLab, and am a geek, I tuned in.

    After reflecting with wide-eyed fascination on the mind blowing (and purposeful!) relationship between these two living organisms, I began to ponder...What does it mean to live with purpose? Many of us have oft asked the question "What's my purpose in life?" And if you run a Google search on this very question, you'll uncover countless articles, books, websites, and "experts" claiming to have your answer.

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  • Practicing Contentment

    Posted on August 16, 2016

    by Kate Green Tripp

    I recently had the pleasure of spending an afternoon in the company of Stephanie Snyder and a room full of folks eager to join her for an exploration of santosha. Literally translated as ‘contentment’ or ‘satisfaction’, santosha emerges in yoga philosophy as an ethical concept synonymous with serenity, equanimity, or being at peace with one’s circumstances. It is one of the Niyamas, or observances, outlined in Patanjali's Yoga Sutras.

    The topic up for review in Snyder’s workshop was the complicated way in which santosha and its counterpart behaviors (ease, acceptance, non-grasping, occupying the present moment) often prove so elusive in modern society. One simple observation shared that afternoon struck me on a particularly deep level and I have returned to it again and again.

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  • It Takes A Village to Conceive A Child

    Posted on June 29, 2016

    by Marga Vaquer-Rhodes

    Research shows that women with infertility have the same levels of anxiety and depression as do women with cancer, heart disease, and HIV. According to the National Infertility Association, one in eight couples of childbearing age in the U.S. has trouble conceiving or sustaining a pregnancy.

    The American Pregnancy Association’s website states that 10 - 25% of all clinically recognized pregnancies end in miscarriage. Obviously, a woman struggling to conceive is not alone. Unfortunately, she often feels that way.

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  • Time Out for Fathers

    Posted on June 21, 2016

    by David Schulkin

    In the wake of Father's Day, I am thinking about parenting and all that it takes and gives. I have always thought it strange that there is no training required to become a parent. In order to be allowed to practice most professions or activities, you have to take classes or go through varying degrees of education. Subsequently, you often then take a comprehensive test, and if you pass, only then are you allowed to do things like drive a car, be a nurse, work with electricity, etc. But to perform arguably one of the most important things people do - raise other little humans - you are not required to undergo any education or pass any test. There are no prerequisites for becoming a parent, no mandatory course requirements or examinations.

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  • Summer's Best Essential Oils

    Posted on June 14, 2016

    by Kaysi Contreras

    Inspired by summer's impending arrival, we offer this quick guide to Summer's Best Essential Oils. Hopefully this quick read will help you incorporate a few key essential oils (EO’s) into your natural medicine tool belt as you pack up for road trips, hop on airplanes, head out to festivals and parties, and stay up later to soak in the evening summer light!

    Remember that essential oils are a very powerful, potent medicine where less is always more; in fact in France one must be a MD to administer EO’s! In this country, much education is still warranted as perhaps it was Pogostemon cablin (PATCHOULI) in the 1960’s, or Big Phama’s pernicious influence, but in the United States, aromatherapy is too often considered a fringe therapy and essential oils are not given the proper credence they are due.

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  • Growing Your Yoga

    Posted on May 07, 2016

    by Valerie Moselle

    For most of us, yoga is a classroom experience, a group encounter. We respond to the synergy of the room, the music, the mat, and the invitation to look inside. Because we respond, we look -- inside our skin for sensation, inside our ribcage for breath, and inside our heart for inspiration. What we seek is inside, the teacher tells us. “The answers are within.”

    But there is another experience unfolding here. One where we are greeted warmly, where we put down our possessions, turn off our phones, and unroll our mat…not alone…but in a sea (large or small) of others. We may or may not say hello. We may or may not smile or make eye contact with the person next to us. But very soon, we are breathing together.

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  • The Evolution of a Practice: What is DRM?

    Posted on March 07, 2016

    by Amber Campion

    When I began teaching yoga more than a decade ago, my work was in the prison system of New York City, teaching at-risk and incarcerated youth. My first year doing this was solely as a volunteer teacher. One year later, I was hired on as a lead teacher and eventually as a trainer. Teaching yoga to a population of students who had not been exposed to Western ‘yoga culture’ required a very different approach to teaching the practice.

    Those early years of teaching were more about using simple asana in a very therapeutic way while integrating powerful dialogue about life, choice, truth, kindness, and so on. My teaching was more focused on the philosophy of Yoga (such as the Yamas and Niyamas) rather than Asana and Pranayama. However, I needed to express myself in a real world way, to find a language that reached my students so they would feel a connection with me and open up. My goal was to engage folks in real conversations, asking them questions they might not have been asked before and opening them up to a possibility of a life they may have not considered before.

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  • ​Beneath Behavior: A Closer Look At Meditation

    Posted on February 11, 2016

    by Kate Green Tripp

    I like to think of my time on my meditation cushion as a vacation. A vacation from the rapidly ticking mind, a vacation from the conditioned, habituated ways I respond to challenges or emotions.

    My time in silence takes me underneath these layers to a very simple place where observing breath and feeling my way into quiet spaciousness are the only tasks at hand. Tasks is not exactly the right word, as that elicits a sense of obligation which isn’t accurate or reflective of the experience. More so than tasks, these realities simply unfold when I close my eyes and sit.

    Some days, when internal background noise or the pull of external distraction is particularly acute, they can be hard to access. Other days, they are right there, peacefully waiting to receive and welcome me, as soon as I settle into position.

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  • childbirth-blog

    Birth Satisfaction

    Posted on January 20, 2016

    by Kaili Reynolds

    The experience of childbirth is often the first transformative experience that we as a species endure. Whether the experience is positive or negative, the effects are lifelong. In fact, the experience of giving birth is so significant that people often leave their dream jobs to advocate for better outcomes, happier families, and healthier babies. Considering this, one would be wise to assume that the journey of pregnancy, labor, and parenting ought to be a trip well researched.

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  • cleanse

    ​Top 5 Reasons to Cleanse in the New Year!

    Posted on December 30, 2015

    by Bridget Puchalsky

    1. Be Your Best Self in 2016

    You are ready to kick off 2016 feeling vibrant, light and clear. Cleansing is a way to set your intentions for the year ahead. We all hold fast - in body, mind, and lifestyle - to old habits and past emotions. By modifying diet and creating new daily rituals, your cleanse will launch your year in the best direction for healthy vitality. Your cleanse will promote optimal health.

    2. Boost Immunity

    Ever wonder why some people tend to get sick every time a cold or flu comes around, while others seem to rarely catch a bug? This often has more to do with immunity than with exposure to exterior pathogens. Ayurvedic cleansing boosts our immunity by reinvigorating the body’s natural defense mechanisms such as restored skin tissue, improved lymph tissue drainage, and increased hydration. During the cleanse you’ll boost your immunity and learn how to keep it year round.

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  • kid-asleep-in-book

    Kids + Sleep: A Necessary Pairing

    Posted on December 14, 2015

    by Kate Green Tripp

    My maternal gauge of daily family welfare is based on a pretty simple recipe. I count as a win the days my kids play hard, learn something, eat well, feel loved, and sleep a lot. I’ll admit an uptick in warm fuzzy feelings in the presence of clean fingernails and sibling camaraderie, but you can’t have it all.

    Of course, there are plenty of times when that basic formula isn’t met as robustly as I’d like. And there are moments when I let it go to pot by forgetting to hug the crew as much as I should, carting them around as I plug through mindless errands, or yanking them out of bed with the promise of “breakfast” in the car as we peel out of the driveway, late for one thing or another. These flashes of sloppy parenting plague us all, and though I beat myself up over them, I also know that my resilient kids will of course survive.

    In the age of overparenting, it is critical that we learn to distinguish between parenting mishaps that are simply real life moments, versus the ones that can cause actual harm. One less-than-forgiving trend I have come to recognize as dangerous under my roof is the slow build-up of ‘off’ days (the ones that explode into true messiness) that are the direct and ugly result of someone’s…or perhaps everyone’s…lack of sleep.

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  • PN-massage

    Massage After Baby: A Way To Replenish

    Posted on October 27, 2015

    by Gemma Depolo

    Taking care of ourselves as parents - as we dedicate our time to nurturing others - is a vital priority. Whether it be in the transformative time of pregnancy, the delicate months after birth, or throughout the trials of raising children, self­-care is a powerful tool that can help make it all a little easier. Scheduling a massage can be the first step to getting back on track after baby is born. It offers an important opportunity to check in, reconnect with self, and address the needs of your body.

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  • road ahead

    Be The Vision (You Wish To See In Your Community)

    Posted on October 19, 2015

    by Kate Green Tripp

    Last week, Luma had the privilege of being featured at the annual Entrepreneur Forum hosted by the California State University, Monterey Bay Institute for Innovation and Economic Development.

    The event offered us a welcome opportunity to reflect upon the infamous twisty and pothole-ridden path that leads small business owners from concept to design to launch and ultimately, if the force is with you, to sustainability and growth.

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  • skeletal-muscle

    The Flexibility Myth

    Posted on September 25, 2015

    by Kate Green Tripp

    It seems a misconception has emerged around the nature of flexibility that leaves people believing they either have it or they don’t. Not true.

    Flexibility, like strength, endurance, or cardio vascular fitness level, is absolutely something one can improve and enhance over time with practice, patience, dedication, and yes…yoga.

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  • Savasana

    Sleeping During Savasana?

    Posted on September 01, 2015

    by Kate Green Tripp

    As it turns out, the practice of savasana is in many ways our opportunity as busy, harried adults to revisit the quiet alert stage of babyhood. Yoga Journal elaborates: “The essence of savasana is to relax with attention, that is, to remain conscious and alert while still being at ease.” The idea behind lying in savasana at the end of class is to seal our physical practice with a complete relaxation of the body, mind, and breath.

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  • hugging

    Breathe More, Worry Less

    Posted on August 01, 2015

    by Kate Green Tripp

    Of all the things we {theoretically} prepare for as newly branded parents – years of sleeplessness, going broke, falling madly in love with our kids, obstructed career paths, learning to make peace with our disheveled selves and homes – we don’t get much of a lesson in worry.

    It seems to go with the territory, at least in America, that parenthood = anxiety. Somehow, the common message is that increased worry is a sign of doing it right, caring enough, paying attention. But at what cost?

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  • luma center

    A Little Studio With a Big Mission

    Posted on July 01, 2015

    by Kate Green Tripp

    So what exactly is Luma all about? We get this question a lot at the studio and always love the opportunity to give an answer. Because our mission is, and isn’t, simple. And our function is, and isn’t, obvious.

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