Monthly Archives: February 2010

Dry Weather Boosts Odds of Flu Outbreaks

 A study from Oregon State University suggests that lower levels of water in cold winter air tied to more influenza.

“…new research suggests that low humidity and unusually dry skies might be responsible for increases in influenza, such as those that occur during winter months.

“This dry period is not a requirement for triggering an influenza outbreak, but it was present in 55 to 60 percent of the outbreaks [the study] analyzed…”

Read the press release

DVDs for Yoga at Home

Recently, a friend asked for some recommendations for yoga DVDs.

These are some of my personal favorite yoga DVDs. My criteria are: 1) can I understand the instructions, 2) are they using language I can understand instead of arcane “yogaspeak”, 3) do I actually enjoy doing the sequences?

If you are inflexible I recommend starting with a slower-paced practice that will give you some time to get into the poses correctly and spend a few moments maximizing the stretch. Look for words like “gentle,” “hatha,” or “Kripalu.”

Ashtanga and Power Yoga may be too fast-paced to allow enough time for a real stretch if you are inflexible. They’d be better after you develop some flexibility.

Yoga Conditioning for Weight Loss

I love this one – Yoga Conditioning for Weight Loss – I think it’s a great beginner tape. You can ignore the “weight loss” part. I has 4 people doing the sequence with different levels of modifications. You can watch them as a group or just the one who is closest to your level of flexibility. 

Available from Amazon

I also like the 2 DVDs of Kripalu Yoga. Kripalu Yoga is sometimes called meditation-in-motion because it combines the poses with breathing and relaxation.

Kripalu Gentle
“Two complete and distinct gentle yoga experiences: first flow 32 minutes, second flow 28 minutes. Includes warm-ups, a variety of floor postures, basic standing postures, a meditation-in-motion posture flow, and relaxation. A well-rounded experience-great for increasing flexibility, releasing tension, opening the spine, back care, and gentle strengthening. Appropriate for all levels. There’s no need to be especially strong or flexible to receive the full benefits of Kripalu Yoga.”

Available from Amazon

Available from the Kripalu Online Store

Kripalu Dynamic

“A dynamic sequence designed to awaken the wisdom of your body as you build strength, endurance, focus, and concentration. A classical series of 30 asanas including warm-ups, standing postures, salutations, balancing postures, floor postures, twists, and inversions, ending with a meditation-in-motion posture flow and relaxation. Postures familiar to most intermediate-level practitioners. There’s no need to be especially strong or flexible to receive the full benefits of Kripalu Yoga.”

Available from Amazon

Available from the Kripalu Online Store

Yoga for the Rest of Us: Heart Healthy Yoga

Lots of Sun Salutations – but at a comfortable pace. It’s both good cardio exercise and a comprehensive series of standing poses. Doing 10-20 minutes of Sun Saluations every morning totally changes my perspective on the day.

Available from Amazon

Available from Peggy Cappy

Getting Over Our Childhoods

After having lunch with friends last week, and talking about the impact of our childhoods on our learning to be adults, I came across this quote in an article in More. “Most of us spend the bulk of our adult lives getting over our childhoods. Coming to terms with how we were loved is some of the most important work we do, arguably more important than what we do for a living.”

Read You Can Go Home Again on

I think this resonates with those who feel their childhoods were perfect, warm and supported as well as those who think childhood was a nightmare – and for everyone in between.

Marcia Menter is the author of The Office Sutras: Exercises for Your Soul at Work.