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Blog Yoga

Set Your Intentions for 2020

How will you show up in the new year?

We’re all familiar with making resolutions for the New Year, but too often our resolutions end in failure. This year, join me and set an intention that you can celebrate and return to throughout the year. No more failures only new opportunities!

I’m excited to host a special workshop on setting intentions at Downtown Yoga on Saturday, January 4 at 10:30 am.

This workshop will explain the practice of setting intentions (in yoga asana classes as well as daily life) and discuss how yoga philosophy (primarily, the yamas and niyamas) can inform our intentions. The workshop will include some brief meditation/reflection exercises and journaling. Workshop participants will receive a handout with relevant information. Participants are encouraged to bring a copy of the Yoga Sutras (optional).

Learn more or register at www.hammondyoga.com .

Can’t make it to the workshop?

No worries! I recorded a similar practice for Fat Kid Yoga Club members that will be released on January 1.

Visit https://www.patreon.com/fatkidyogaclub to sign up!

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Blog Yoga

How to Teach Yoga for Bigger Bodies

Yoga is for EVERY-body. But not all yoga teachers are trained to offer accessible classes for folks in bigger bodies. This creates a barrier that prevents many plus-size would be yogis from accessing the benefits of the practice.

If you’re a thin/average/not-fat yoga teacher who wants to create accessible classes, I want to help! I teamed up with my good friend Laura Burns founder of Radical Body Love Yoga to talk about how yoga instructors can make their classes fat-friendly. In the video below, you’ll find our tips for offering inclusive yoga classes for everybody.

Want to Learn More?

Check out the resources below!

Connect with Marc
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/c/MarctheFatYogi
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/embracewhatis/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/marcsettembr…
Join Fat Kid Yoga Club: https://www.patreon.com/marcsettembrino

Connect with Laura
Website: https://www.radicalbodylove.com/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/radicalbody…
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/wedged10…

How-to Videos
Child’s Pose – https://youtu.be/1oofrM1IYcg
Sit Cross Legged – https://youtu.be/7m3gi1ZoYRc
Step to the Top – https://youtu.be/2WnN0R4PV6A

Books We Like!
https://www.curvyyoga.com/book/
https://diannebondyyoga.com/yoga-for-…

Categories
Blog Yoga

How to Child’s Pose

Child’s pose is one of the most common yoga poses, but that doesn’t mean that it’s easy! I’ve met many people who either HATE child’s pose or struggle to make it restful. 

This week’s Fat Kid Yoga Club practice is a mini-workshop on child’s pose. We’ll start off with a self-assessment, taking time to notice our embodied experience of the posture.

Are you limited by pain or an injury? It’s important to discuss these issues with a medical professional as well as your yoga teacher. 

Are you just uncomfortable in child’s pose? There may be ways to shift or support your body with props to find ease.

Maybe you’re “not flexible enough” – that’s okay. With practice, you may become more flexible. But, bone structure and body shape/size also play a part in how our bodies move, bend, and flex.

In this Fat Kid Yoga Club practice video, I provide adaptions for each of these challenges using different yoga props, so before you get started you may want to have some blocks, a blanket or towel, a bolster or cushion, and a chair nearby.

If you found this video helpful, please consider supporting me and joining the Fat Kid Yoga Club on my Patreon Page: https://www.patreon.com/marcsettembrino

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Blog Yoga

Fat Kid Yoga Club – FAQ

What is Fat Kid Yoga Club?

Fat Kid Yoga Club is an online community for bigger-bodied people to practice yoga and celebrate their bodies.

Why “Fat Kid”?

I have been a fat kid my entire life. I spent years being ashamed of myself and hating my body. Yoga helped me form a better relationship with my body and I want to share that with others. You don’t have to be “fat” to join – you don’t even have to identify with the word “fat”. But you DO have to respect us.

Why Fat Kid Yoga Club?

Fat people are regularly excluded from “fitness” and “wellness” spaces. Fat Kid Yoga Club provides a safe and accessible way for folks with marginalized bodies to practice yoga. Folks have been asking me for online offerings the last few years and now feels like the right time.

Why a Facebook Group?

For better or for worse, many people still use Facebook. The Facebook group is intended to be a place for people to come together and share their experiences and advice. All are welcome to join regardless of whether or not they are paid members. Join here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/322414445358304

Why Patreon?

Patreon allows me greater control over who access my content.

Why charge a fee for your classes?

Yoga teachers spend thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours in training and practicing. I teach yoga because it’s FUN and I LOVE working with people. But I also have bills, a lot of student loan debt, and my time is valuable.

How much does it cost?

There are three levels of membership:

  • Basic – $1 or more per month ($10 suggested)
  • FKYC+ – $35 per month
  • FKYC+2 – $60 per month

What do I get?

Basic membership provides access to a growing library of yoga practice videos, with new practices being added each week.

FKYC+ includes access to practice library PLUS one 30 minute coaching call with me.

FKYC+2 includes access to the practice library PLUS TWO 30 minute coaching calls with me.

How do I sign up?

To sign up, visit www.patreon.com/marcsettembrino

What happens when I no longer contribute?

I’ll be sad ☹ BUT I understand that life changes happen AND that yoga and/or my classes aren’t for everyone. You’ll lose access to the weekly practice videos but you will get to stay in the Facebook group.

Categories
Blog Yoga

Do You Use Yoga Blocks?

A few years ago, I heard another student say “blocks are cheating”. He couldn’t have been more wrong! I always practice with blocks, and you should too! Even if you don’t use them for every pose, they’re great to have on hand. Check out this video about three of my favorite ways to use blocks.

Categories
Blog Yoga

How to Step to the Top of Your Mat

If you’re like me, you might struggle to “step to the top of your yoga mat”. The struggle is real, and we’re not alone! Check out this video from my YouTube channel to see how I do it!

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Blog Yoga

Fat Kid Yoga Club!

Y’all! I am so excited to announce my new project, Fat Kid Yoga Club! As you may know, I offer weekly, size-inclusive Radical Acceptance Yoga classes in New Orleans. Many of my followers have asked for an online option, so, I’m using my summer vacation to step up to the challenge!

Beginning July 1, 2019, I’ll offer weekly yoga practice videos for Fat Kid Yoga Club members. You’ll also get access to my exclusive Fat Kid Yoga Club Facebook group – a place where we can build community together. 

Of course, you don’t have to identify as “fat” to join – ALL bodies are welcome! Check out my Patreon for more info and to sign up! https://www.patreon.com/marcsettembrino

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Blog Yoga

4 Things Yoga Studios and Teachers Can Do to Celebrate LGBTQ+ Pride Month

June is LGBTQ+ Pride month. It’s a time of celebration for many LGBTQ+ people, marked by parties and parades. But pride wasn’t always a party. LGBTQ+ Pride emerged out of the gay liberation movement of the 1970s, which sought to end violence and discrimination against LGBTQ+ people. Since the 1970s LGBTQ+ folks in the US won the right to marry, and protections against discrimination in housing, employment, and medical care.

We must not forget, pride is political. It is an unapologetic statement by LGBTQ+ people that we are here and that we will not be silenced. Pride is also a political moment for allies. Clearly, you don’t have to be LGBTQ+ to support our community. Straight folks are welcome and encouraged to participate in pride festivities, but I would also invite you to do more. Our current political climate has created many challenges for LGBTQ+ people. Nationally, hate crimes against LGBTQ+ people are increasing, and our current administration actively targets the rights of transgender people.

What Can Yoga Studios/Teachers Do to Support LGBTQ+ People?

There are lots of things that you can do to support LGBTQ+ folks, here are the 4 things that I think can make the biggest impact.

1. Celebrate and Acknowledge LGBTQ+ Pride Month and other LGBTQ+ Awareness Days

First and foremost, acknowledge pride! It’s as easy as making a social media post or including a paragraph in your newsletter. These simple steps will help your LGBTQ+ clients feel welcome and supported. You can also fly a rainbow flag or post some other signage that indicates your support for the community. But there are many other important LGBTQ+ days including Transgender Day of Remembrance (November 20) and National Day of Silence (April). Check out this list for more.

2. Create Safe and Inclusive Spaces for LGBTQ+ People

It’s one thing to fly a rainbow flag but it’s another to create a safe and welcoming space for LGBTQ+ people. There are MANY great resources available for learning how to create safe/inclusive spaces. I’ve offered LGBTQ+ inclusion training at my university for six years; here are some basic tips:

  • Don’t Assume – you cannot tell someone’s gender identity or sexual orientation from looking at them.
  • Use inclusive language – avoid talking about “male” or “female” “energy” or “natures”; remember not all men have penises and not all women have periods. In general, try to avoid gendering bodies.
  • Offer gender-neutral restrooms/changing areas
  • Shut down homophobic/transphobic language – period.

3. Donate to LGBTQ+ Organizations

Put your money where your mouth is. Consider offering a special donation-based yoga practice(s) to raise money for LGBTQ+ organizations, especially local organizations or organizations support LGBTQ+ racial and ethnic minorities. Similarly, reach out to local LGBTQ+ organizations and OFFER to help them raise funds.

4. Offer FREE Classes

Yoga shouldn’t be a luxury. Unfortunately, many folks simply cannot afford a $15 drop-in class or a $120 monthly membership. LGBTQ+ people, especially people of color, face significant financial hardships due to housing and employment discrimination. Consider offering a few free or low-cost classes each month to low-income folks in your community.

What do you do?

This is by no means a complete list! Leave a comment below and let me know what kinds of things you do to support LGBTQ+ folks in your studio. Or, if you’re LGBTQ+, tell me what you’d like teachers and studios to do.

Categories
Blog

Answering the Call: Why I Became an Ordained Minister

Most people who know me wouldn’t describe me as “religious”, so it might come as a surprise to learn that I am an Ordained Minister in the Universal Life Church.

Why did I become a Minister?

Because it felt like the right thing to do. I’ve heard many people talk about being “called”. Often, there’s a moment in their life where they felt compelled to deepen their faith and join the ministry. On March 11, 2019, I had that same feeling.

Why the Universal Life Church?

The Universal Life Church is interfaith and nondenominational. Our only belief is to do that which is right. The ULC is inclusive and seeks a fuller life for everyone.

What do I plan to do now?

I plan to: (1) share my beliefs and ideas about spirituality with those who are interested; (2) serve my community and help those in need; and (3) promote justice.

While I don’t have plans to marry anyone right now, it is possible.

You can learn more about the Universal Life Church, here.

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Blog Yoga

New Class: Radical Acceptance Yoga!

I’m honored to partner with Jaci Blue, New Orleans premier Size Inclusive boutique, to offer WEEKLY Radical Acceptance Yoga classes at Balance Yoga & Wellness.

Laugh. Stretch. Breathe. And love your body!

Radical acceptance yoga provides a place where practitioners of all levels and body types can experience the benefits of yoga.

Here you’ll celebrate your body through movement and accept what’s possible one practice at a time. This class combines breath with movement and alignment-based instruction. Perfect for all bodies and levels of experience. 

Classes are held Sundays at 5:30 PM at Balance Yoga and Wellness located at 120 S. Cortez St., in New Orleans, Louisiana. Sign up HERE.