Long ago before Lululemon was the norm in class, there was a dude named Paulie Zink who taught Taoist Yoga.  He was also a master of martial arts and used his yoga practice as the base/foundation for his training. He would start with supine poses which he held for 5-10 minutes. Two hours later, Paulie would begin the Yang portion of his training. At this point in time, Taoist Yoga is what we know as Yin yoga today.  However, not in its entirety. Only the part dealing with Yin principles.

Taoist Yoga | Father of Yin Yoga

Paul Grilley is the most well-known teacher in the Yin style.  He met Paulie Zink in 1989 and trained with him for one year.

Continue reading History of Yin Yoga in Ella’s Words

On my flight back from Norway, I watched Doctor Strange for the third time. Every time I watch this film, something new sticks out for me.

Mordo: “I wanted the power to defeat my enemies and you gave me the power to defeat my demons.”
The Ancient One: “We never lose our demons, Mordo. We only learn to live above them.”
(Doctor Strange. Dir. Scott Derrickson. Marvel Studios, 2016. Film.)

For those of you who don’t know my story, watch “Not So Namaste” on my site and you will get a glimpse into my upbringing. I have a lot of demons and I would be foolish to think they will simply go away, but I will be damned if I allow them to run my life. As I’ve started my journey with plant medicine, and combine that with my ongoing yoga practice, I feel like I have enough tools to battle them.

The biggest tool is awareness. Awareness gives me the ability to pause and reflect instead of going straight to reacting. It gives me the gift to live out of intent more and more, and not simply out of habit. I am able to notice when I’m anxious and in my head, and to choose my breath.

This gives me the power to choose, the power to trust my path instead of my fears, the power to choose me.

The longer we live, the more we realize life is not simply black and white. We collect a lot of baggage along the way but the power to choose yourself over your demons is always there.

Identify your demons. Get to know them. Give them a good kick in the ass and send them on their merry way.

Choose YOU instead. Over and over, rise up above your demons and choose you.

Believe you’re worth it.

XO Ella