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About Bernie Clark
Bernie Clark, author of the best selling The Complete Guide to Yin Yoga, has had a passion for science, health, sports and spirituality since childhood. He has a degree in science from the University of Waterloo and spent over 25 years as a senior executive in the high-tech/space industry. Bernie has been investigating the path of meditation for over 4 decades and began teaching yoga and meditation in 1998. He conducts yoga teacher trainings several times a year and aims to build bridges between the experiences of yoga and the understandings of modern science. Other books written by Bernie include From the Gita to the Grail: Exploring Yoga Stories & Western Myths; YinSights; and the recent Your Spine, Your Yoga which is book two of the Your Body, Your Yoga trilogy. He is also the creator of the YinYoga.com website. Bernie offers courses online as well as in person in Vancouver, Canada.
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All forms of yoga can provide benefits physically, emotionally, and mentally, however Yin Yoga works the deeper levels of the body/heart/mind: the yin tissues of fascia, tendons, ligaments, joints and bones, as well as the energetic channels of the meridians, nerves and blood system. One big difference noticed by students of Yin Yoga is the long-held, passive nature of the posture, which gives time for a deeper journey to unfold, a journey into the meditative aspects of yoga, a bridge to living life mindfully.
The second edition includes—a more functional approach to the practice of yoga, emphasizing the concept of targeted areas; the importance of stress in reducing fragility and building antifragility; understanding the nature of creep and the importance of counterposes, with a revised list of effective counterpostures; many new photographs of the postures and their variations for different body types; a more current overview of the physiology of tissues and the energy body reflecting new understanding in the science of fascia and cellular signaling; and many other enhancements.
As in the first edition, the book presents comprehensive information on how to do the practice, including how to get into and out of the pose, contraindications and warnings for those who may have trouble with particular aspects of the posture, and other important information. Why we do the practice is discussed by looking at its benefits in three main sections: the physiological, energetic and mental/emotional benefits.
Your Body, Your Yoga has over 500 illustrations and photographs. For the technically astute, extensive endnotes are provided, along with a exhaustive index. Technical sidebars (labeled It’s Complicated) allow a non-technical reader to skip the heavier, more detailed discussions and stick to high-level explanations of the concepts. For yoga teachers, sidebars (labeled To the Teacher”) are offered to help them bring the concepts into their classes. Other interesting discussions that could disrupt the normal narrative flow are also put into sidebars (labeled It’s Important), which everyone is invited to read.
Despite the popularity of Yoga, the stories from its land of birth are very strange to Western ears. What do these ancient symbols mean, what are they trying to teach us, and how should we incorporate this knowledge into our Western lifestyle? Every myth is a map to some deep cultural and personal landscape. By looking at the myths of the East along with the stories that people in the West grew up with, we are given opportunities to select the best maps available, or to create new ones to help guide us through the uncertainties of modern living. By exploring myths East and West, this book shine a light on the landscapes within and allows us to choose the appropriate map we want to follow.
In his insightful . . . book, Bernie reminds us that we have a choice in how we live our lives; we can hold tight to our beliefs, allowing them to dictate our reality, or we can invite every story (or even encounter) to be a gateway into the poetic, multifaceted dimensions of truth, and the fluid nature of reality.—Sarah Powers, author of Insight Yoga and founder of the Insight Yoga Institute
By contrasting the metaphorical maps of different cultures we become aware of our own unquestioned assumptions. Bernie Clark’s book does this in a wonderfully entertaining way. It reflects his years of practice and teaching.—Paul Grilley, author of Yin Yoga
If you could record Joseph Campbell and Carl Jung’s conversation over a game of chess, it might sound something like this.—Daniel Clement, founder of Open Source Yoga
Stories are fun! Important stories guide us and educate us; they create mental models which work at an unconscious level to help us navigate through our modern society and govern our reactions to the ups-and¬downs of life; they provide meaning and purpose for our life; and our stories entertain and entrance us. In this book, Bernie Clark looks at the spiritual stories found in the West that create a base map for our lives and then looks at the stories found in the East to see how they could improve our base maps. The stories offered are mix of light¬hearted and enjoyable, and deep and profound.
The importance of stories East and West are illustrated through the model proposed by the great 20th century mythologist, Joseph Campbell: myths, or stories, serve four great functions - the mystical, the cosmological, the sociological and the psychological function. The stories chosen illustrate these four functions of mythology and show how we can take these stories into ourselves to create a deeper experience of life.
The human spine is unique in its structure and function. Primarily, it provides stability through the core of our body, allowing forces to be transmitted from the upper body (arms and shoulders) to the lower body (pelvis and legs) and vice versa. Secondarily, the spine allows tremendous range of movement. Unfortunately, in modern yoga practice we find the primacy of these two functions reversed, with flexibility prized over stability. This focus on spinal mobility comes at a grave cost to many students. Stability is lost, and when that happens, dysfunction and pain often follow.
Just as all tissues and areas of the body need a healthy amount of stress to regain and maintain optimal health, so too our spine needs the appropriate levels of stress to remain functional throughout our lives. How we choose to exercise the spine makes a difference, though. Knowing the way the spine is built, specifically, how your spine is built, will allow you to tailor your exercises wisely to match your goals.
Your Spine, Your Yoga is the second book in the Your Body, Your Yoga series and focuses on the axial body―the core, from the sacral complex, which includes the pelvis, sacrum, and sacroiliac joint, through the lumbar and thoracic segments of the spine, to the cervical complex, which includes the neck and head. The structural components of each segment are examined: from the bones, to the joints, ligaments, fascia, tendons, muscles, and even the neurological and blood systems. The range and implications of human variations are presented, as well as the ways these variations may affect individual yoga practices. The sources of restrictions to movement are investigated through answering the question “What Stops Me?” The answers presented run through a spectrum, beginning with various types of tensile resistance to three kinds of compressive resistance.
Whether the reader is a novice to yoga, anatomy, or both, or a seasoned practitioner with an in-depth knowledge in these fields, this book will be valuable. For the novice, there are easily understood illustrations and photographs, as well as sidebars highlighting the most important topics. For the anatomy geek, other sidebars focus on the complexity of the topic, with hundreds of references provided for further investigation. For the yoga teacher, sidebars suggest how to bring this knowledge into the classroom. Your Spine, Your Yoga can be used as a resource when specific questions arise, as a textbook to be studied in detail, or as a fascinating coffee-table book to be browsed at leisure for topics of current interest.
Your Upper Body, Your Yoga is the highly anticipated final book of the Your Body, Your Yoga trilogy — the definitive investigation of how your uniqueness affects your movements, postures and your yoga.
This remarkable trilogy looks at the variations of human anatomy and its effect on the body’s biomechanics. Used as a standard text for many yoga teacher training programs it provides yoga students and teachers a system for exploring what asanas are possible and sensible and which postures should best be left alone. This third book in the series looks at the upper body: the shoulder complex, arms and hands. But, there is more. This final book also includes explorations of how asymmetries and proportions affect our practice.
You are unique. No one else in this whole world has your biology or biography. Why suppose that your yoga practice should be, or even could be, the same as anyone else’s? How far apart should your hands be in Down Dog? Where should they be pointing? Should you avoid hyperextension of the elbows? Is hyperflexion of the shoulders safe? The answer is — it depends! Your Upper Body, Your Yoga looks at the upper body from both the Western anatomical/biomechanical point of view and the modern yoga perspective. It is filled with detail, discussion, illustrations and practical advice for bodies of all types.
Proportions and asymmetries are highly variable from person to person. The implications of asymmetries for a yoga practice and whether these asymmetries need to be changed, accommodated or simply accepted is examined along with variability in our proportions and their effect on postures.
Whether the reader is a novice to yoga and anatomy or a seasoned practitioner with an in-depth knowledge, this book will be valuable. For the novice, there are easily understood illustrations and photographs, as well as sidebars highlighting the most important topics. For the anatomy specialists, other sidebars focus on the complexity of the topic, with hundreds of references provided for further investigation. For the yoga teacher, other sidebars suggest how to bring this knowledge into the classroom. Your Upper Body, Your Yoga can be used as a resource when specific questions arise, as a textbook to be studied in detail, or as a fascinating coffee-table book to be browsed at leisure for topics of current interest.
(I) What is Yin Yoga; (II) The Benefits of Yin Yoga, including discussions of anatomy, the energy body, and the heart and mind body; (III) The Practice of Yin Yoga, including illustrated descriptions of 30 yin yoga asanas (poses).
Yin Yoga has the same goals and objectives as any other school of yoga; however, it directs the stimulation normally created in the asana portion of the practice deeper than the superficial or muscular tissues (the yang tissues). Yin Yoga generally targets the connective tissues of the hips, pelvis, and lower spine.
Suitable for almost all levels of students, Yin Yoga is a perfect complement to the dynamic and muscular (yang) styles of yoga that emphasize internal heat, and the lengthening and contracting of our muscles.
Für eine gesunde und entspannte Yogaerfahrung ist die korrekte Ausrichtung von essenzieller Bedeutung. Dabei spielt die individuelle Anatomie eine Schlüsselrolle, denn aufgrund der Unterschiede im menschlichen Körperbau sowie potenzieller Bewegungseinschränkungen können Yogapositionen nicht bei jedem Trainierenden gleich aussehen. Erst wenn Sie Ihre eigene Anatomie kennen, können Sie Ihre Yogapraxis optimal an diese anpassen. Wie das geht, zeigt Ihnen der erfahrene Yogalehrer und Buchautor Bernie Clark.
Wie beeinflusst die Eigenheit Ihres Körpers Ihre Bewegungsmöglichkeiten? Wie sind menschliche Gewebe beschaffen und auf welche Weise können sie einschränken? Welche Form und Funktion haben Hüft-, Knie- und Fußgelenke und wie wirkt sich das auf Ihre Bewegungen aus? Was hemmt Sie beim Yoga? Bernie Clark gibt Ihnen auf all diese Fragen Antwort und hilft Ihnen mit umfassenden Informationen und nützlichen Tipps dabei, Ihren Körper verstehen zu lernen und so Ihr perfektes Yoga zu finden!