Breathing exercises are a foundational aspect of yoga practice but they can also be used on their own throughout the day to ground and re-center yourself! Erin walks us through the three-part breath (also called Dirga Pranayama), a breathing exercise that focuses on sending breath to three different areas of your chest. The physical effects of breathing can be immediate for some. Deep breathing can activate your parasympathetic system, which in turn slows down your heart rate and may lower blood pressure. Breathwork may also be beneficial in decreasing feelings of anxiety, increasing mood, and creating an overall feeling of calm.
Chair Yoga is a type of yoga therapy practiced sitting on a chair or using the chair as support. Chair yoga is great for those with limited mobility and an excellent way to loosen up the muscles, especially after sitting all day! It can also be helpful in combatting pain, reducing stress levels, and improving circulation. Grab a stable chair and spend the next hour with Erin!
You can grow delicious herbs and vegetables at your home, even if you don’t have a yard!
Almost all of the vegetables and herbs that you would grow in the ground, will also grow well for you in a container. In fact, because gardening, even on smaller scales, has become more popular over the last few years, there are some vegetable varieties bred just for container growing. There are also more container options for vegetable growing than ever before, not that you need to buy something special… part of the fun is turning interesting or unexpected objects into creative planters!
So, what can you grow on your balcony or patio? Annual or perennial herbs, some fruits such as strawberries, tomatoes (look for ‘patio’ tomatoes or choose a determinate variety, unless you’re prepared to prune and provide support), peppers, eggplant (Asian varieties work best because of their smaller fruits), broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, peas and beans (with support trellising), any leaf crops such as lettuce, swiss chard and kale, even onions and root vegetables such as radishes, carrots and beets! Cucumbers can do well but need extra support if they are a vining type and potatoes can be grown quite well, in their own large container. Things that don’t work so well are corn (which needs to be planted in larger numbers for good pollination), winter squash, melons and vining cucumbers (any of which can take over your entire balcony!) and perennials such as asparagus.