Bust Belly Fat at Its Source!


We’ve known for some time that STRESS is connected to weight gain, specifically “belly fat.”

A high level of the “stress hormone,” Cortisol, has been shown to increase appetite. Because increased levels of this hormone cause higher insulin levels, your blood sugar drops and you crave sugary, fatty foods. So when your body reaches a certain stress level, it does what it feels it needs to do in order to feel better. In most cases, that means overeat.

Yoga can help reduce stress because it promotes relaxation, which is the complete opposite of stress. Yoga combines physical poses, controlled breathing, and meditation, which is especially helpful during tension-filled times.

Yoga helps reduce stress, lowers blood pressure and your heart rate. And anyone can do it!

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Become a Senior Yoga Instructor


Debbie showing our 200 Hour Power teacher trainees how to adapt their classes to accommodate the senior population! If you’ve ever wanted to learn about Senior Yoga or if you are interested in teaching seniors, Debbie will be leading our next Senior Yoga Teacher Training Nov. 11 – 13. For more information, send an email to            Debbie@next-yoga.com.

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“How to Tame Your Ego”


by Bhante Sujathagful

At the core of buddha’s teachings is the belief that the most deep and meaningful life is found at the center of things, on the middle path.  It’s usually in the high’s and low’s, on the extremes that suffering and struggle prevail.  As we all walk this path, seeking meaning and joy in every moment, Ego is a near constant hinderance.   It pops up at the most inopportune times, when we least expect it.  Ego influences our actions and behavior far more than most people realize—- even in generosity and kind deeds you will find ego emerging as we check in on what’s really motivating us—- the desire to be loved, to be recognized, to be seen often is at the source.  We’ve become obsessed as a nation with eliminating Ego— you can walk into any bookstore in America, turn on any self help television show or talk to a thousand “teachers” and they all talk about the need to get rid of the Ego.  However, when we really look at the Buddhas core teachings, you won’t find the total elimination of anything—- the teachings are about the middle path and Ego has a center too.  Keeping Ego in check, finding a gentle balance with it, understanding how it emerges and influences a situation is a highly beneficial awareness that will yield you powerful results and increased joy.  Ego serves a great purpose deep inside us, helping us live confident and effective lives.  Only when we have too much or too little do we suffer…..

I invite you to stop trying to remove Ego, instead, let’s find a healthy place for it within the total of who we are— let’s explore how to observe our ego and notice when its growing or shrinking, when it’s influencing us in positive or negative ways.  I believe when we tame the Ego, we find true happiness.

Bhante Sujatha, a 30+ year Buddhist Monk, is singularly focuses on adding more love in the world.  Bhante teaches loving-kindness meditation to people around the globe for all those seeking the art of happiness and contentment.  His approach to meditation is deep and simple, bringing core Buddhist teachings to everyone in a way that is practical and easy to understand.  A joyful, radiant, funny and wildly energetic monk, Bhante will help you obtain peace that can only be found in deep silence.   He is originally from Sri Lanka and is the head monk / abbot of the Blue Lotus Buddhist Temple and Meditation Center in Woodstock, IL.

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Opening Your Throat Chakra

If you find yourself struggling to communicate well with your friends, co-workers, your spouse, or your kids…you feel isolated and unable to express your uneasiness.  You’re probably starting to feel a bit hopeless and frustrated. If your throat chakra is blocked, you may also suffer from sore throats, headaches and migraines.

Once you understand and channel the power of your throat chakra, you will begin to create balance within your mind and spirit. The physical postures, or asanas, we practice in yoga work to release dormant energy from the body while activating and balancing fresh energy. The harmony of a stabilized throat chakra will make you feel more at ease, balanced and confident.

A great posture for opening the throat chakra is Camel Pose  (Ustrasana).

Camel Pose is not only excellent for your throat chakra, but also your heart chakra. Camel is known for its ability to make us vulnerable and open to giving and receiving love.

If you are comfortable in your back bend, while in Camel Pose, place your hands on your ankles and drop your head so your throat is fully exposed, like Lauren is demonstrating here.


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Research on Yoga in Women with Breast Cancer

exercise-stockIn studies of women with breast cancer, yoga has been shown to reduce fatigue and improve quality of sleep, physical vitality, and overall quality of life.

At the 2003 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), results were reported from a yoga study involving 126 women recently diagnosed with Stage I or II breast cancer. The women were about to receive chemotherapy or hormonal therapy. Some of the women were assigned to yoga classes over a 3-month period. The women taking yoga had a 12% improvement in fatigue, physical functioning, and quality of life compared with those in the program who did not take the yoga classes.

In 2006, results of a yoga study were reported from an M.D. Anderson Cancer Center study. The study followed 61 women receiving 6 weeks of radiation treatment for breast cancer. Half the women took a yoga class twice a week; the other half did not. Compared with the women who did not take yoga, the women in the yoga group reported having more energy and less daytime sleepiness, better physical functioning, and better overall quality of life.


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3 Ways Yoga Helps You Take Care of Yourself

1. Manages Your Stress
When you are going through stressful times, focus your practice on reducing your stress levels. You have a lot of choices for relaxing poses and practices.

2. Balances Your Emotions
When you feel off-balance emotionally (depressed, anxious, or angry), you can incorporate poses into your practice that help improve your emotional state.

3. Balances Your Body
Think about your particular body and all the activities you already do in your daily life. You can focus your practice on improving your strength, flexibility, balance, and/or agility as needed.


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Fight Like a Girl


Did you know there are more than 2.8 million Breast Cancer survivors in the United States? Did you also know that when detected early, Breast Cancer has a 98% survival rate?

Almost everyone has been touched, in one way or another, by Breast Cancer. This October NEXT Yoga is honored to celebrate those who have overcome the disease, help support those who continue to fight it, and help bring awareness to those who can be proactive with Breast Cancer.

Throughout October..

-There will be pink NEXT Yoga tank tops as well as breast cancer awareness bracelets and tumblers for sale.

-We’ll be holding a raffle for Breast Cancer Awareness themed raffle baskets, and we will draw winners at the end of the month.
*Tickets will be 1 for $5 or 3 for $10.
*Proceeds to Susan G Komen Foundation.

-We are partnering with Athleta Naperville. We’ll be honoring Breast Cancer Awareness by teaching a class every Saturday, 8:30-9:30. Wear pink and come flow with us Athleta… for FREE!

#breastcancerawareness #courage #hope #pinktober #NEXTyoga

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Office Yoga

Woman doing yoga in office

Next time you’re sitting at work and your head and neck start to ache from sitting too long, staring at your computer, take a breather…literally! It’s important to minimize any discomfort throughout your day, so you can focus on your work and feel your best.  So take a few minutes to work on your neck, back arms, hips and wrists with a few stretches.

Here are 3 yoga moves you can do right at your desk:

1) Shoulder Rolls. Sitting upright, inhale as you lift your right shoulder to your ear. Exhale as you slowly rotate your shoulder and drop it away from your ear. Repeat with your left shoulder, then continue alternating between both shoulders five more times.

2) Neck Stretch. Sit upright without touching back of your chair with your head directly over your spine. Lift the crown of your head as you breathe in, and drop your right ear toward your right shoulder as you exhale without lifting either shoulder or turning your head. For a deeper stretch, reach over your head and place your right hand by your left ear, then gently pull your neck away from your left shoulder.

3) Chair Twist. Sit at the front of a chair, then swivel your thighs to the right so you’re sitting diagonally. Inhale and lift your right arm up to the ceiling. On an exhalation, move your arm across your body and hold on the back of the chair on the left side. Bring the left hand to the right knee or chair handle, then inhale and lengthen your spine. Exhale and twist to the right, pressing your right hand against the back of the chair to deepen the twist. Relax the muscles in your back and gently twist a little farther. Stay in the pose for 10 to 15 breaths, then return to center with an exhalation and switch sides.

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Spiritual Warriors ~ The Harvest Moon Brings Forth a Surge of Emotional Energy

full-moon-sailseptember-harvest-moon-59The full moon nearest the autumn equinox is named the Harvest Moon since, during this month, the moon helps the harvest by providing more light at the right time than other full moons do.

The full moon known as this year’s Harvest Moon will rise tonight (Sept.16) and will be shaded by a subtle type of lunar eclipse for some skygazers in Africa, Asia and Australia.

Eclipses on the Virgo-Pisces axis have been described as “ a precious event full of imagination, intuition and participation in the unified field of the ONE… This Pisces Full Moon eclipse is here to dissolve what holds you apart from Spirit and your true Self.” (MysticMama.com)

Open your root chakra at the base of your spine and send down thick roots to the core of Mother Earth to remember who you are. It can be a time to focus on what is working in your life and especially in your relationships and enhance it.

Experience the magic of the sunset and the moonrise. The Harvest Moon-September’s name is attributed to Native Americans because it marked when crops were supposed to be harvested. Corn, pumpkins, squash, beans, and wild rice the chief Indian staples are now ready for gathering and at the peak of harvest, farmers can work late into the night by the light of this Moon.

Tonight – September 16, 2016 – that full moon you’ll see ascending in the east after sunset is the Northern Hemisphere’s Harvest Moon.


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What is fascia and why do we talk about it in yoga?

Fascia is a fibrous tissue that ‘connects’ every cell in our body. This connective tissue extends from our head to our toes. Fascia surrounds and infuses every muscle, muscle fiber, bone, blood vessel, nerve and organ in our body. It also directly affects our muscular and neurological systems.
Fascia is a white, somewhat transparent web interwoven through our tissue. Deep fascia is a tough, tight form embedded in our muscles, blood vessels etc.
To keep joints mobile and healthy we need to keep our fascia happy! We need to slowly stretch our body to help our fascia. Ligaments and tendons start to relax and release when given the time and space to do so, creating space, increasing strength and deeper flexibility.

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