Pulse oximeter measuring oxygen saturation

Does deep breathing increase blood oxygenation?

I’ve often heard yoga teachers say things like, “We only use a small percentage of our lungs when we’re breathing normally,” or “We don’t use our full lung capacity, and if we could breathe more deeply, we could bring more oxygen into the bloodstream.” But are those things true?  Well, it is true that if…

How many calories do you burn practicing yoga?

Probably not as many as you think.  Does that really matter?  Maybe not as much as you think. Students occasionally ask me “How many calories do you burn practicing yoga?” I often assume that what’s underlying the question is another question, “Will I lose weight practicing yoga?” but that’s really a different question, which I’ll…

Tree pose at pond

Scapulohumeral rhythm: what happens when you lift your arms overhead?

What happens when you lift your arms overhead? Lifting your arm is a pretty common movement—think shampooing your hair or reaching for a can on a high shelf. It’s also common in yoga practice, from the first movement of a sun salutation to downward facing dog and handstand. Unfortunately, there are some widespread misconceptions in…

Yoga anatomy video: Knee alignment in Warrior II

Just put up a video clip from my first knee workshop last Tuesday at the Shala, about preventing patellofemoral pain in Warrior II. If you missed last Tuesday, I’ll be doing two more workshops about the knee. This Tuesday, February 4, we’ll go over repetitive stress injuries and what happens when you hyperextend your knee….