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Procrastination Holiday

Although may of us procrastinate even the littlest things there actually might be some sound scientific reasoning behind the act.  Additionally who would have thought there was an actual time to celebrate or honor procrastination?  So many articles, books, and talks are devoted to being on top of it.  So according to Wikipedia procrastination is explained as:


There are several expressed goals for the week. The first is to celebrate the act of procrastinating by leaving necessary tasks to be done at a later time. There are, however, other purposes for the holiday. One claim is that the week of putting-off provides a mental and emotional break causing a decrease in stress and anxiety. However the holiday does not advocate sloth and inaction. Instead it places emphasis on accomplishing tasks and leisurely activities that could not be accomplished while one had other responsibilities. These may include reading, cooking, cleaning, and exercising. 

There is of course opposition to this “holiday” but I will take the positive approach.   So this key is to take a break and do something that one has put on the back burner such as doing #yoga or #meditating.  Although procrastination is an ugly term in itself, the premise behind this ideal is worthy one indeed.  Take some time for yourself and explore some new yoga poses.

Click on the link and come into a child’s pose – Balasana


Classroom Yoga

DSC02320 DSC06892 DSC06906Khampiane Keodonexay (teaches Language Arts at Manning Middle School)
DSC02321I find that the greatest things about yoga are that anyone can do it, there are modifications for any level, it’s relaxing and calm, and it really helps ease pain and tension. Kids love it because it’s a break from the norm, it opens their minds and gets them ready for lessons. I incorporate yoga on “Grammar Wednesdays” and the kids actually look forward to doing it; many of them state that even after leaving my classroom, they continue to practice yoga either at home or at a yoga studio. Typical poses that I teach the kids are: ragdoll, downward facing dog, cobra, happy baby, tree pose, corpse (the all time favorite).

Khampiane Keodonexay (teaches Language Arts at Manning Middle School)

What Color is your Meditation Cushion?

supportive meditation cushions by catspaw studioThere are countless articles and books about how we respond to color. There is a lot of money spent on what will be the trendy colors for the year or for the diffierent seasons –  from everything from cars to fashion.  When it comes to a zafu or meditation cushions, yoga props or floor cushions, the tradition for meditation cushion has been mostly black.

I started making meditation cushions because I wanted some festive meditation cushions and yoga props for my yoga classes.  At my core I’m an artist, so adding color to support cushion wasn’t a stretch. 😉  I try to choose colors that inspire, energize and calm.

The article What Color is your Zafu? by  Elizabeth Marglin shares a quick list of what colors represent:

Yellow: Stimulates joy and uplifts the mind

Orange: Stirs up energy and boosts confidence

Red: Excites the passions and helps overcome depression
Violet: Calms the emotions and deflects irritability
Blue: Soothes the spirit and also induces harmony
Green: Balances, heals, and relaxes
Black: Inspires both introspection and discipline
Brown: Encourages security and stability
 The Psychology of Color Guide for Designers on Pinographics is a fascinating article with more detail.

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A Life Worth Breathing



41PylGNCrOL._SY346_A book I came across a few years ago is Max Strom’s “A Life Worth Breathing:  A Yoga Master’s Handbook of Strength, Grace and Healing.”  I really resonated with this book, and it inspired me to go to the first Iowa City Yoga Festival, to hear him speak and teach.  I still have family and friends in Iowa so it was a bonus that Strom was going to be there.
I’ve just learned that Strom has a new book coming out:  “There is No App for Happiness: How to avoid a Near-Life Experience.”   I’ve noticed lately that the topic of happiness seems to be a big topic of interest, and that we seem to need more guidance on the subject than one would think.  Within a span of about a month, one of my favorite blogs posted “The Habits of Happiness:   zen habits by Leo Babauto (July 9), and “The Pursuit of Happiness” (Time Magazine, July 8, 2013).
My question is, Why do we struggle so much with contentment, happiness, change and balance?
Here is a link to Strom’s Ted Talk:


Catspaw Studio

009Welcome to our updated website, Catspaw Studio

Our Catspaw Cushions store includes our mediation cushions (round and rectangular), as well as neck wraps and eye pillows, both of which can be heated or cooled.

Catspaw Studio continues to teach ongoing yoga classes and private sessions.

Our blog has evolved from  Yoga for the other 99 to There is power in pausing.

Yoga for the other 99 was inspired by the voice of a number of students and non-students alike, who have seen a yogi in a pretzel pose and say, “You want me to do what?”   Many photos in Yoga magazines portray masterful execution of extremely difficult, advanced poses that lead most of us to think, “That is not me, and could never be me.”  And that leads many to dismiss Yoga as simply impossible, as a practical matter.  Catspaw Yoga, by contrast, practices Structural Yoga, a tradition created by Mukunda Stiles.  It is Yoga that adapts to the individual, regardless of his or her limitations.  Its philosophy is that perfection in the pose is never more important than honoring your limits and breathing.  Of course, Yoga magazines and similar sources can be very informative and should be a source of inspiration in our practice, but Structural Yoga does not try to make anyone into a “Magazine Yogi.”

In addition, Yoga for the other 99 , we will be sharing what inspires us and things we like – from books to businesses.  It’s about what keeps us creative.  Thus, we will have a few guest postings.  One of our first will be about “I can’t believe my hamstrings are so tight” teenagers who may be active in all kinds of sports, but are simply not learning how open up their bodies (and, we hope, their minds) as they progress in their sports.  There are examples of world-class athletes whose spines will remain misshapen for the rest of their lives, because they failed to counter their hours of practice with movements that would have opened their hips, back and chest.  Another post will introduce to a school teacher who use yoga before the start regular classwork to get the students focused.

Looking forward to sharing and exchanging ideas!






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