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5 Easy Yoga Poses to Do While Traveling Posted on 17 Jun 19:28 , 0 comments

“Yoga takes you into the present moment, the only place where life exists.”                                                                                                                         -  Anonymous    Ahhh...yoga. Nothing compliments  a nice relaxing vacation or business trip like some stress-relieving yoga. Yoga is the perfect "on-the-go" workout that you can literally do anywhere at anytime - and it requires no equipment! In addition, yoga has a myriad of  benefits: it stretches you out, massages your internal organs, improves circulation, and reduces anxiety. So whether you are in your hotel room, or about to suffer a long train, plane, or car ride, these quick yoga moves will prepare your mind, body, and spirit for that business meeting you're about to tackle, or "mental break" you've been looking forward to all week!  

Pose 1: Seated Spinal Twist

[caption id="attachment_2501" align="alignleft" width="300"]Photo Credit: CNN Travel Photo Credit: CNN Travel[/caption] How-To: On the edge of your seat, or on the ground, gently cross your right knee over your left knee. Then, bring your left hand across your right knee and your other arm on the armrest. If you are seated on the floor, place your left elbow on the outside of your right knee, and your right hand on the ground, directly behind your back  and aligned with the spine. Next, take a deep inhale and then turn towards your right side on your exhale. Take five deep breaths. Then repeat on other side. ¹  Why It's Good: Spinal twists are great for realising daily stress and tension, stimulates circulation, helps to alleviate strain and calms the nervous system.        

Pose 2: Bridge Pose

[caption id="attachment_2553" align="alignright" width="300"]yoga-pose-full-wheel-pose-1439-1 Photo Credit: YogaTrail.com[/caption] This pose is perfect if you have some time to kill in your hotel room or if you are taking in some beautiful scenery at the beach or park. How-To: Place a hotel blanket or towel on the floor and lie on your back with your knees bent and feet on the floor. Rest your arms by your sides. Press your feet and arms on the ground as you exhale, contract your abs, and press your hips to the ceiling. Roll your shoulders back and underneath your body as press your back up further, and clasp your hands beneath you, or if you are up for the challenge, try grabbing your ankles for an extra stretch. Why It's Good: Not only does this pose strengthen your glutes, spine, thighs, and core,  but it also helps to improve flexibility, stimulates the thyroid and combats any menstruation problems.  

Pose 3: Standing Forward Fold

[caption id="attachment_2552" align="alignleft" width="260"]yoga-folds Photo Credit: Tribalance.com[/caption]

This is, undoubtedly, one of my favorite poses, as it is such a great relaxer and helps to relieve any tension on the back.

How-To: Stand with your feet hip distant apart. Exhale and bend forward from your hip joints, and tilt forward with your knees slightly bent. You can either let your arms hang down freely, place one hand onto each elbow, or touch the floor if you are flexible enough for a deeper stretch. Press your heels firmly on the floor, lift your sitting bones towards the ceiling.  Take 8-10 deep breaths, then stand up slowly. Why It's Good: Forward bends strengthen your hips, hamstrings, thighs and calves,  lengthens your spine, and rejuvenates and clams the body.  

Pose 4: Tree Pose

[caption id="attachment_2504" align="alignright" width="380"]Photo Credit: CNN Travel Photo Credit: CNN Travel[/caption]

How-To: Standing with your feet together, ground down on all corners of your feet. First, distribute your weight evenly between both legs. Then,  shift your weight onto your left leg. Take a big inhale and bring your right foot onto your left anklebone, with your knee out wide. Grab your ankle and guide it to inner left thigh as you look ahead. Be sure that your foot is either above or below the knee. Next, press your foot into your inner thigh, while also pressing your inner thigh against your foot.  Hold the pose. Another trick is to think about pulling your right knee and inner thigh towards the back of the room. Your hands can stay on your hips, or alternatively, you can bring your arms in front of your chest into prayer position, or "spread your roots" with your arms actively reaching above your head. Hold for up to one minute. While exhaling, release your foot and arms back down. Repeat on the other side. Why It's Good: This pose is great for improving focus and concentration while calming the mind. Other benefits include the strengthening and toning of the legs, buttocks, ligaments and tendons of the feet, while also building self-esteem and self-confidence.²  

Pose 5: Chair Pose

[caption id="attachment_2551" align="alignright" width="300"]11223093215_0633440c2e_o (2) Photo Credit: Flickr User Amy[/caption]

How-To: Stand with your feet and knees together, with big toes touching and heals slightly apart. Then, inhale as you raise your arms above your head, and exhale as you bend your knee. You can either keep your arms perpendicular to the floor, or bring palms together. Alternatively, you can also reach out in front of you, extending your arms parallel. Try to bend your knees and bring your thighs as parallel to the floor as possible, keeping your shoulder blades down and below your ears. Breathe deeply for five-10 breaths or for up to one minute. Inhale as you  straighten your legs and release to standing

Why It's Good: Chair pose is the ultimate leg strengthener. It is a strong pose, and strong legs keep you grounded, even while flying. Chair pose builds muscle tone in the entire  lower half of your body, as it strengthens hip flexors, ankles, calves, and back. It also stretches out the chest and back, and stimulates the heart, diaphragm, and abdominal organs.  

Are you an avid yogi? Share with us some of your favorite yoga poses to do while  traveling!

    References: Dodson, C (2011, September 9). "Airplane Yoga: 18 exercises for healthy living." CNN Travel (Online News Article). Retrieved                                 from: http://travel.cnn.com/sydney/visit/plane-yoga-18-exercises-healthy-flying-910157. Kiltz, R. (2010, October 29). "The Health Benefits of Vrikshasana (Tree Pose)" (Weblog). Retrieved                                                                                           from: http://www.cnyhealingarts.com/2010/10/29/the-health-benefits-of-vrikshasana-tree-pose/.

Travel Tips: Yoga-On-The-Go Posted on 29 Jul 11:29 , 0 comments

[caption id="attachment_2636" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Yoga on-the-go travel Yoga On-the-Go[/caption] Last week we shared one of our favorite new sites, Calm.com, as a great resource to add to your travel arsenal. That got us thinking, what other resources are out there for keeping you calm and relaxed while traveling? In our searches, we came across another fantastic website, Yoga Glo. The site offers a wide variety of instructional videos, teaching different styles for varying skill levels. The site also offers classes of differing lengths, from five minutes to two hours. No matter how much time you have, there's something for you on Yoga Glo! Yoga Glo is a subscription service, and they offer a 15 day free trial after which you can subscribe for $18 a month for unlimited access to Yoga Glo's online classes. Between that and Calm's guided relaxation services, you'll be able to travel with ease and relaxation!

Keep Calm and Travel On Posted on 22 Jul 11:38 , 0 comments

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While we all love to travel, adventure, and explore the many wonders that this world has to offer, we also know just how stressful and exhausting traveling can be. From extra long layovers to flight delays to baggage fees and more, getting from point A to point B can be a complete logistical nightmare. That's why we were so excited when we came across a new web site, Calm. Also available on the iPhone as an app, this site offers guided relaxation experiences. Users get to select their preferred background noises, choosing from options such as an ocean, river, soft rain, or sounds of the forest. You can also choose how long you'd like to relax, with 2, 10, and 20 minute options. No matter how much time you have, these exercises are fantastic ways to unwind, trust us! We tried all three lengths and are officially hooked. Try it today, and we're sure you will be too! Be sure to follow Nomaterra on Twitter and Facebook!

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