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Posts Tagged ‘yoga

What Equipment Do You Need For Yoga?

Actually you don’t need much to start   doing yoga; I’d say you only need a good mat. That’s all. But… Sometimes, just to make the practice more convenient, or to enhance it, we can use various props and wear particular clothes. If you feel like having the mat only is not enough for you, then go on reading, since we’re going to dive into the most popular and needed yoga gear the majority of students use. You can consider it to be a kind of a yoga equipment checklist for beginners, or something.

What Do You Need For a Yoga Class?

 

  • A Yoga Mat

Among the things you need for yoga class a yoga mat is the most essential. Alternatively, you can have a blanket or a yoga towel, which is also popular in Hot or Bikram yoga.

Yoga mats are made of various materials; the better the material is the more expensive the mat. The same is true for the mat’s size: if you want something bigger and thicker, you will have to pay more. But, there is no need to have a huge mat, because it will be difficult to carry it with you to a yoga studio. You can have it at home, of course, but still I think it is not always very practical. You need to get the right mat thickness, as for the size – just let it cover the whole area on the floor where your body lays.

It’s great to have a natural, Eco friendly yoga mat, but such mats are usually quite expensive – can be over $40.

As in the case with mats, the skidless yoga towels also come in various types, materials and prices. Sometimes, a quality towel costs more than a good mat.

Now, although I said that there is no need to get a huge and expensive mat, it doesn’t mean you need to get a cheap trifle. No, a mat is essential and it will be with you during your practice for years! So get a really good one you like and feel comfortable to practice on it.

  • Only a Mat? Oh, Wait!

Actually, there is something else your mat needs: it is either a yoga mat bag or a carrying strap. You will need them to transport your mat to a class. A bag protects your mat from dust, but a strap is easy to use and fast to make your mat ready for the practice. Some mat straps can also be used to aid your practice, which is an additional benefit.

  • What’s Next? Yoga Apparel

The next most important thing after the mat is the yoga apparel. The first thing to look at is the natural material like cotton or linen; also the clothes should be loose enough to allow free movement in various poses. Yoga practice involves flexibility and wide range motions, so make sure you get yoga pants and shirts to facilitate this.

Instead of pants you may want to get leggings – they are fine as long as they are suitable for doing yoga poses. Instead of t-shirts you can have yoga tops, which often are pretty convenient. Some of them have built-in secure bras to provide an appropriate support for female students during their practice.

The next are the yoga socks and gloves (or yoga paws). Actually I prefer to do yoga barefoot and with nothing on my hands. But if you are not into displaying these parts of your body, or it’s just a bit cold in the room you practice in, then you can get a special socks and gloves that provide an adequate grip. Also there are yoga shoes, which can be great to wear in a studio, especially during winter.

  • Yoga Straps and Blocks

Now is the turn for yoga props, namely straps and blocks. These are good for beginners, since the serve to provide “extra arms” and an additional support. “Extra arms” means that when you don’t have enough flexibility to do a pose, you can use a yoga strap to extend your arms. The similar thing is with the yoga blocks – for example, when you do the triangle pose (Trikonasana), and cannot reach the floor with your hand, you can have a block under it to place the palm over. Often these props are recommended for beginners since they not only compensate for your lack flexibility, but also provide extra safety.

Other props include yoga bolsters or yoga pillows, bands, rollers, belts (the same or slightly different from the straps), yoga balls, sandbags. Basically, all these belong to so called ‘optional yoga equipment’.

Is There Any Difference Between Yoga Equipment For Men And For Women?

Not really; the major stuff is the same. The difference is in the apparel of course: pants, t-shirts, socks, etc. But when it comes to mats, straps, bolsters, blocks – all are the same.

When you consider buying yoga supplies, start with the essential gear like a mat and clothes; if after a while you’ll feel like you need some more stuff to aid your practice, then go and get what’s required. But personally, I think there is no need to buy every piece of yoga gear at once. Chances are you won’t use all the things, some will be collecting dust. So start with the most essential yoga equipment for beginners, and proceed to get more if needed.

I hope I made it clear about what you need to start yoga. The main thing, of course, is your desire to go on, and the ability to be regular and gradual in your practice.

P.S. By the way, I completely forgot about doing yoga at home! If you practice at home, then consider buying the best yoga DVD for beginners!

(Source:http://yogayukta.com/739/yoga-equipment-for-beginners/ By:Den)

Christmas Food

Christmas Food

(Photograph: foodfolio/Alamy)

Christmas dinner: What would you eat?

Christmas is a time for feasting, but how much is too much?

It’s no wonder waistlines expand at Christmas if past years are anything to go by.

In the 13th Century, the medieval occasion ran for 12 days, with lavish spreads every day.

Christmas excess today means that the average person consumes 6,000 calories on Christmas day.

This is equivalent to eating 4.8kg of egg-fried rice, or 42 bananas, or 23 and a half hamburgers. Or you could think of it as eating three 300g chicken korma curries, three 300g chicken tikka curries, three naan breads and 24 onion bhajis.

That is also the same amount that a Tour de France cyclist needs to sustain a day’s racing, professional athletes consume to propel them through a day’s training, Royal Marines need to fuel their missions, and Arctic explorers demand to endure a day on the ice.

For those of us less inclined to extreme endurance and more comfortable with staying indoors, there is little chance we will be burning 6,000 calories on Christmas day.

But there are ways to do things a little bit more healthily.

Christmas dinner itself easily fits in to the recommended calorific intake for a day, says Sian Porter, consultant dietician and spokesperson for the British Dietetic Association.

In fact it contains 956 calories, and 48g fat, she says. The guideline daily calorie count is 2,500 for men and 2,000 for women.

But it’s not just Christmas dinner that we indulge in.

“Six thousand calories over the day includes smoked salmon and eggs for breakfast, buck’s fizz and wine and other drinks, liqueurs, also Christmas cake, mince pies, cheese and biscuits, cold nibbles, snacks, crisps, nuts and an open box of chocolates,” she says.

You know what will happen if you eat an extra 500 calories a day in December…

Is that so bad?

“Some people can rebalance that quickly and easily,” she says.

“But some people have already kicked off indulging in early December and go through until 2nd January, which can mean they gain around 5lb,” she says.

This is by eating an average extra 500 calories per day.

To burn off Christmas day’s calories alone you might need to do at least seven hours of hard exercise such as cycling. But keeping moderate exercise up before and after Christmas can help stop you putting on weight.

How to burn off 6,000 calories

burn calories

burn calories

It takes a lot of work to burn off 6,000 calories.

Here’s how you can do it:

Average man:

Sport

Time needed

Jogging

10 hours 20 min

Medium walking

14 hours 30 min

Hard cycling

7 hours 15 min

Basketball

8 hours 5 min

Fast swimming

7 hours 15 min

 Average woman:

Sport

Time needed

Samba or Tango

28 hours 40min

Hatha yoga

34 hours 20min

Fast swimming

8 hours 40 min

Jogging

12 hours 20min

Hard cycling

7 hours 10 min

(Sources: ONS statistics and British Heart Foundation calculator)

So how to avoid an unhealthy binge?

Do not skip meals and try to eat regularly to avoid overeating in one big meal, says the English Institute of Sport’s performance nutritionist Emma Gardner.

It can lead to excessive hunger and poor choices, she says.

“Ensure you have a good breakfast before going to Christmas dinners/buffets so you don’t arrive hungry – Christmas gatherings are filled with tempting treats, which you are likely to snack on if you arrive hungry.

“Add a protein source at breakfast, which will also help to fill you.”

Sian Porter says adapting old favourites also works a treat.

“If you flip the lid off a mince pie, which is 250 calories before adding cream or brandy butter, you can save calories there, or swap unhealthy snacks for satsumas, nuts, dates or other fruit,” she says.

“Pile up your plate with fruit and veg, and do things a bit smarter – on the day make gravy from vegetable water and only open one box of chocolates at a time.”

Emma says: “Whether at a buffet or a Christmas dinner base your meals around lean protein options and vegetables or salad.

“If you want to go that extra step, try dry-roasting potatoes on a non-stick baking sheet or use an oil spray instead of smothering them in goose fat.”

There are plenty of easy calorie-savers, such as not eating turkey skin or avoiding putting butter on vegetables.

Eat vegetable crudites or popcorn, provided it’s without butter or sugar, for low-calorie alternatives to crisps.

Swap calorific nibbles for satsumas to have a healthier day

Chef Laura Santtini’s cooking style is flash cooking – a healthy, quick alternative where the emphasis is on “fit fast flavours for busy people”.

Most importantly, “having a flavour arsenal” next to her cooker means she can make delicious dishes that are low on fat.

Laura says she adheres to an 80:20 principle of eating, where 80% of her diet is healthy and 20% is more indulgent.

She says Christmas is “a one-meal day, not a day for thinking about being healthy”.

Simple calorie-savers

  • Swap turkey legs/thighs and skin for turkey breast
  • Swap roast potatoes for new potatoes
  • Swap cauliflower cheese for boiled or steamed vegetables
  • Swap small roast potatoes/parsnips for large ones as they absorb less fat
  • Swap gravy for bread sauce of fruit sauces
  • Swap meat stuffing for chestnut or fruit-based stuffing, which are low in fat and a good source of potassium
  • Swap brandy butter sauce for low-fat custard

(Source: English Institute of Sport)

“If you do 80:20 then it flips and Christmas is an 80% naughty day. But on Boxing Day you have stopped grazing,” she explains.

She suggests that you can boil or steam sprouts or bake them in the oven, or instead of doing roast potatoes, do Persian jewelled rice in a slow cooker.

However for some there is no avoiding a big calorie counter of the day – booze.

“Be aware of consuming too many empty calories, such as those in alcohol,” says Emma Gardner.

Sian Porter says alcohol is “7kcal per gram versus 4kcal/g for protein or carbs and 9kcal/g for fat”.

“Alcohol is calorie-dense and, when drunk in excess, reduces will power meaning you are more likely to succumb to eating tempting foods,” nutritionist Emma explains.

It’s recommended to avoid sweet cocktails and creamy liqueurs. Or alternate alcohol with water, or drink small short spirits with diet fizzy drinks.

But if you are planning on over-indulging during Christmas, do not despair.

Chef Allegra McEvedy says: “Unless you have serious dietary issues, you should lay back and indulge. It’s not a day to count calories.”

So one day of indulgence is OK?

“It’s all about not making people feel guilty and taking it easy,” says Sian Porter.

“You can be bad and then be good over other days – it’s over in a short space of time, and you can rebalance those extra calories by cutting back elsewhere.”

On Boxing Day you’ll be eating salad and getting on your bike then?

(Sources: BBC Food)

Top 10 Exercises and Sports to Burn Calories.

1.Spinning and elliptical trainer

Spinning on a stationary bicycle and exercising on an elliptical trainer both offer the highest calorie burning benefits. A 260-pound person will burn 1,342 calories an hour. The average male or any person weighing 190 pounds will burn 980 calories in 60 minutes, and the average female weighing 163 pounds will burn 841.

2.Skiing (downhill and cross country)

Downhill and cross country skiing is an excellent winter sport that burns fat while one has fun. Someone who weighs 260 pounds will burn 1,030-1,342 calories an hour. The average male will burn 752-980 calories skiing, and the average female will burn 645-841. A ski machine comes in close, and the average man will burn 832 calories, while the ordinary women will melt away 714 calories.

3.Basketball (full court)

Full court basketball is a fun sport that will help one to lose or maintain weight. When wanting to hang out with friends and work together, basketball is a great, calorie blasting sport. The person who weighs 260 pounds will burn 1,295 calories for each hour they participate. The ordinary man will shred 946 calories, while the average women will melt away 812.

4.Rock climbing

Indoor and outdoor rock climbing offer a healthy adventure. Again, a 260-pound person can easily burn 1,295 calories an hour while enjoying this sport. Men, you will burn 946 calories, and women you will burn 812.

5.Soccer

Competitive soccer is another sport that involves team work and constant motion. Those who weigh 260 pounds will burn 1,186 calories per hour. Males can enjoy this sport while burning 866 calories each hour. Females will ignite their metabolism and annihilate 743 calories.

6.Running

Running at a speed of 6 mph will allow a 260-pound person to burn 1,186 calories every hour. Men who run 6 mph will burn 866 calories, and women will burn 743. Keep in mind that the faster you run, the more you burn.

7.Rope jumping

Rope jumping is hard work, but it offers high calorie burning benefits. The same 260-pound person will blast away 1,186 calories after jumping rope for an hour. Males who participate in this high intensity workout will burn 866 calories per hour, and females will burn 743.

8.Swimming

Swimming is a great sport that works the entire body in the water. Burning 1,154 calories in 60 minutes will happen without breaking a sweat for those who weigh 260 pounds. The average weighing man will scorch 844 calories when swimming, while the average woman will melt away 724.

9.Skating

Rather you choose to go rollerskating or rollerblading, you will be burning butter. For those who weigh 260 pounds, 1,076 calories will be shed each hour. Men, put on your skates and prepare to annihilate 787 calories each hour. Women, prepare to have fun while burning away 675 calories. Oddly enough, women (or those who weigh less) will burn more calories skating than swimming, whereas, men (or those who weigh more) appear to burn more swimming.

10.Vinyasa yoga

Vinyasa yoga is a type that involves breathing in synchronization to each movement. Yoga is my favorite exercise of all 10 listed, and vinyasa yoga will subtract 1,030 calories each hour from a 260-pound person. Men, pick up your yoga mat and burn 752 calories in just an hour. Women, join me by participating in my favorite form of exercise and burn 645 calories for every 60 minutes.

This article was written by Rebecca Bardelli, a Yahoo! contributor.

To choose your favorite exercises and sports burns calories.

Don’t forget keep safety with comfortable sport shoes and sport wear.

Enjoy your sporting life with doing exercise.


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