Jill Sand Consulting

Wellness, Yoga, Body, Mind, Spirit, Fitness, Health


Hello Yogis!

As we begin the 2013 New Year, I wish to inform you that I will no longer be continuing to post my weekly newsletters here on my webpage because of storage issues. I will continue with my blogs and other parts of the website.

If you wish to receive my weekly newsletter, please email me at jillsandconsulting@yahoo.com or "Like" my Facebook Page at Jill Sand Consulting.

My newsletters will still be active, just not here anymore.


Namaste and Find YOUR Bliss!


November 4, 2012


A quick reminder that some of the new classes start this week. The Home Studio starts their new classes on THURSDAY, as does the Eden Prairie crew. We finish off the Tuesday Home Studio classes from the last session this week. Eden Prairie is finishing their Monday class from last session as well.

How are you progressing with your 2012 Yoga Goals? This week, two yoginis mastered some very big goals: Jenna took scorpion away from the wall, and Barb amazed us with headstand! If you run into either of these ladies, they would be perfectly willing to show you the efforts of all their hard work! You ALL rock, and now is a good time to be thinking about our 2013 goals... :)

Be prepared to continue to work on strong core this week, with abs and twists in our near future!

Just a reminder that the Women's Circle is this Monday at 6:30. I pulled together all my notes, and I am so excited to share the information on the significances attached to 11:11! The cost is either $30 (which buys you a shirt, so the Circle is free), or if you don't want a shirt, the cost is $10. If you already bought a shirt, attendance for the Circle is free!

For those of you who are really drawn toward 11:11, seeing them frequently, I highly recommend that you join me on Sunday, Nov. 11 at Laurie Wondra's One Day Retreat which will open and expand our own personal portals to allow full advantage of the energies that are coming through this November and December. The retreat runs from 10:00 AM through 4:00 PM. The cost of $75 includes lunch, printed materials, chakra stones, journal, and a gift bag with some tools for keeping us on our journeys. Wear your Opening the Portal t-shirt! For more information, contact Laurie at Laurie@yourlifecore.com


December 9, 2012

Hello Yoginis!

So much on my mind right now! This is the time of year for tying up loose ends and then making preparations for the year ahead! I have to remind myself not to get TOO far ahead, as the best laid plans... well, you know the rest!

So this is what we KNOW about the year ahead!

2013 Yoga Goals


I will be leaving notepad paper on the counter these next few weeks at the home studio, as you select your 2013 yoga goals and place them on our visual yoga board. What many of us have learned this year: 1) never say never, 2) practice practice practice, 3) achieving our goals is exhilarating! and 4) yoga is BLISS!

2013 Yoga and Meditation Class Changes


Our schedule will remain the same, with the exception of an additional session, added on to Thursday evenings. Throughout the winter months, from January through March, we will be including a new Bliss Meditation 30 minute session. Each week, we will practice a different type of meditation, and I will provide information in my weekly newsletters regarding the meditation we'll be working with. You are welcome to sign up for all 13 sessions, or you can drop in when time avails. You need not attend the Thursday night yoga class to attend the Bliss Meditation session, as I will have a 15 minute break between yoga and meditation.

Changes in the NAMES of the Classes!


I had decided to change the names of my classes in 2013. This will NOT change the format, just the name. Our regular yoga classes are now called Yoga Bliss, and the advanced class is now called Zen Warrior Yoga. This is just me, needing to make a change. Haha!!

Sneak Peak and Early Sign-up for Classes


You get the first sign-up opportunity for my home studio classes! Next week, I will make the classes public, so please make sure you tell me that you are signed up this week to ensure you spot in class. As you know, classes fill up fast, and I have had a waiting list for the evening classes all fall.

New Year 2013 Class Schedule


Thursday, January 3 through Thursday, March 28

(same low rates as 2012!)

January Tuesday Bliss and Zen Warrior classes $100 (12 classes)

Thursday Bliss classes $108 (13 classes)

Thursday Bliss Meditations $50 (13 sessions)

Tuesday & Thursday classes $190 (25 classes)

Tuesday, Thursday classes and Thursday meditation $235 (38 classes/ sessions)

Drop-in Fees

Yoga classes $10

Meditation sessions $5

Save the Date! January 19, 2013 Saturday Women's Retreat 

Includes yoga, homeopathy, an Indian luncheon, personalized essential oils, and specially made for you tea blends which end in a very British Afternoon Tea! This will be a pampering day for you, and you will go home with lots of goodies! More information to follow as the presenters and I pull this together in the next week.


COLORADO YOGA RETREAT WEEKEND!!! Yoga Retreat to Buena Vista, Colorado 

Thursday through Sunday, June 6 – 9, 2013

This retreat already has seven people on the list! Please ensure your spot by sending in your down payment of $200 before the end of the month.

Did you know that Colorado Springs is this year’s #3 top destination vacation in America, and Denver is ranked at #5? Well, the Cabin at Trout Creek is located between these two destination vacations, situated on 3.5 wooded acres with the San Isabel National Forest outside the front door!  Included in this retreat is a private cabin that can accommodate up to 10 people, catered meals, a horseback trip into the mountains, car rental so we have the freedom to drive to town if we want to, and unlimited hiking! Also included are two daily classes of outdoor yoga, morning meditations, and evening Circles. This yoga retreat into the Colorado Rockies will be a venture you never forget as you commune with nature. The cost of the retreat is $525 plus your flight transportation, which I will help you find the best deals, and you will actually get your tickets yourself (it’s very easy to order online these days). I have found tickets prices to Denver for $250, but I know we can get that rate down to around $200.

$200 deposit is required when you sign up. If we have more than 7 people attending, we can drop the total cost another $25 to $100! So let me know if you are interested. Reservations are confirmed, and I need to confirm dietary restrictions in the next couple weeks. 

Namaste and see you on the mat!




December 2, 2012


This week’s practice reminds us to open our Hearts as we work with the Heart Chakra, which affects the chest, shoulders, and mid- and upper-back areas. For many of us, the idea of opening our Hearts also means to be empathetic for others. At the Holiday season, it might mean to open our wallets for those less fortunate. This past weekend, my girlfriends gathered for yet another year of sponsoring families through the Scott County CAP Agency. This year, we sponsored three families with young children. I realized times may not be quite as difficult for Scott County families this year as compared to last year, as the wish lists contained mostly toys, vs. last year’s request for mostly clothing. Let’s hold in our thoughts a better 2013 for all.

Today, I decorated six kissing balls. I figure that is appropriate for a week of opening our Hearts.


Upcoming Events

Women’s Circle – This WEDNESDAY, December 5, 6:30 – 8:00 PM Healing Meditation Introduction 

Love donation, RSVP by Tuesday evening please

Starting in January, I will be offering a separate meditation class following the Thursday night yoga class. There will be a sign up for the class, or you can drop-in. These classes will be dedicated toward helping heal ourselves as well as our loved ones as well as the planet. We will get to experience different forms of meditation. If you think that meditation is not attainable for you, then you may not quite get what it is all about. Meditation is about resting the mind in silence and space, allowing it time to recover and rejuvenate. It is NOT about sitting in a perfect state of peace while having no thoughts. Meditation is about establishing a different relationship with your thoughts for just a little while. You train yourself to place your attention where and when you want. Studies have found that meditation has profound self-healing implications for physical and mental health. In this circle, I will share information about different forms of meditation, and then we will spend about 30 minutes in a meditation. Dress comfortably. Some people prefer to sit while meditating, while others prefer to lie down. If you’d like to lie down, bring your mat along.


Christmas Week Yoga – Thursday, December 27, 6:15 – 7:30 PM Drop-in fee of $10; Saturday, December 29, 8:30 – 10:00 AM  Drop-in fee of $10 You must RSVP for these classes, and I will only run them if I get 4 or more people signed up.


COLORADO YOGA RETREAT WEEKEND!!! Thursday – Sunday Yoga Retreat to Buena Vista, Colorado June 6 – 9, 2013

This retreat already has seven people on the list! Please ensure your spot by sending in your down payment of $200 before the end of the month.

Did you know that Colorado Springs is this year’s #3 top destination vacation in America, and Denver is ranked at #5? Well, the Cabin at Trout Creek is located between these two destination vacations, situated on 3.5 wooded acres with the San Isabel National Forest outside the front door!  Included in this retreat is a private cabin that can accommodate up to 10 people, catered meals, a horseback trip into the mountains, car rental so we have the freedom to drive to town if we want to, and unlimited hiking! Also included are two daily classes of outdoor yoga, morning meditations, and evening Circles. This yoga retreat into the Colorado Rockies will be a venture you never forget as you commune with nature. The cost of the retreat is $525 plus your flight transportation, which I will help you find the best deals, and you will actually get your tickets yourself (it’s very easy to order online these days). I have found tickets prices to Denver for $250, but I know we can get that rate down to around $200.

A $200 deposit is required when you sign up. If we have more than 7 people attending, we can drop the total cost another $25 to $100! So let me know if you are interested. I need to confirm the dates in the next couple weeks.




Colorado Rocky Mountains Yoga Retreat

With Jill Sand, Women’s Wellness Consultant and Yoga Instructor

Thursday, June 6 – Sunday, June 9, 2013


Buena Vista, Colorado



4 Days, 3 Nights Rate:  $525 total (does NOT include airfare) $200 down payment upon sign-up

Also included in the price:

  • All ground transportation and rental car
  • 4 days, 3 nights accommodations
  • All food - 3 meals a day plus snacks – local, Spanish, and Western recipes - locally grown ingredients
  • Horseback riding excursion
  • Hiking in the San Isabel National Forest
  • 2 yoga classes (morning and late afternoon)
  • Morning meditations
  • Evening circles

Not included in the price but available upon request:

·         Whitewater rafting

·         Golf

·         Fly fishing

·         ATV and jeep rental

·         Hot air balloon rides

·         Hot springs

Yoga and Meditation Retreat

Yoga and flexibility. That is what is offered at the Colorado Rocky Mountains Yoga Retreat with Jill Sand Consulting. This uniquely flexible retreat bends to fit your idea of a truly uplifting yoga experience – while always staying refreshingly down-to-Earth. Less intensive and time constricting than a typical weeklong yoga retreat, this long weekend retreat is an incredibly affordable and inspirational way to take time for you while exploring new mountain landscapes. Jill will guide you through twice daily yoga sessions to gently stretch and strengthen your body, daily circles to stretch and strengthen your mind, and daily meditations to stretch and strengthen your Spirit.  


“The mountains are calling and I must go.”

~ John Muir


November 25, 2012



It’s nearly December, and that can typically mean a time of being busy: busy at work for the year end, busy at home preparing the home for the holidays, busy reacquainting with friends and relatives, busy eating more sweets and starches than we have the entire year, up to this point. Busy! And so we connect to our mats for an hour reprieve from all the busy-ness.  I KNOW how torn we get when we have so many busy projects and expectations ahead of us, to take that time for yoga. We can come up with a million excuses for not attending. And yet, this is the time to recognize how much we NEED to stop the busy-ness and take to our mats. For example, I entertained 33 people for Thanksgiving, and then we attended the other side of the family’s celebration later that night. I was exhausted, and I knew I had to get up to teach a Tibetan Rites class the following morning at Dakotah. I was looking forward to the yoga class, but frankly, I was also looking forward to coming home after class and doing nothing for the rest of the day. But as I moved through the Tibetan Rites class, my body started energizing. I realized that my body was craving the action and energy that we get from yoga. And as we went through the class, I found myself actually considering joining the yoga class that followed mine. And so I did. What a treat! It had been so long since I had attended someone else’s class, and part way through the class, I nearly started crying from the joy of being on the mat and just flowing through the series of movements. I was so grateful for the experience!

I know when you attend classes, you often feel the same way, and so I remind you not to shortchange your yoga experience these next few weeks. Put yoga on your calendar in INK so you can’t erase it. Work your schedule around your yoga practice as much as possible, and in between classes, or even if your schedule gets so tight you do miss a class, please practice at home.  Two to four sun salutations and a balance pose are all that are required to re-energize yourself and get centered and balanced.

2012 Yoga Goals

Speaking of taking our yoga practice home, let me ask you about your yoga goals that you set for the start of 2012. Are you still working on them? And by “working on them,” I mean, do you practice at home as well as in class? For many of us, we set goals that were well beyond where we were when the year started. That means that we have to practice not only in class but after class. HERE IS THE SECRET THAT I HAVE LEARNED THIS YEAR: We are capable of nearly every goal we set. Throughout the year, I shared videos with you: The woman in her late 50s with arthritis in her back who starts a yoga practice and in less than ten years, she looks younger, stronger and has flexibility and mobility that she would not have attained through any other practice. The paratrooper who jumped from planes during the wars so often that his back was a mess, he had gained nearly 100 pounds, and there was no hope coming from his doctor or any of the trainers he saw, until he met a yoga teacher who promised to help him get his health back. We saw this young man transform before our very eyes, from not being able to hold Triangle to running a marathon. And then there was the 92 year old woman who started her practice in her fifties and is able to do poses I am still working on! What I learned from these videos, and others I have shared this year, is that we are indeed capable of becoming stronger, more flexible, and have greater balance. If a 58 year old woman with arthritis in her back can literally turn back the aging clock, why can’t we? If a severely wounded vet can drop 100 pounds and do a headstand, why can’t we? If a 92 year old woman can balance her entire body weight on her two hands while her body is horizontal from the ground, why can’t we?

The truth is, we can. The ONLY thing that truly holds us back is ourselves. Sure, we get injuries from time to time, which can set us back or even require time away from the mat, but the truth is, the mat is ready for us to come back. I have learned that I have held myself back during my practice, but that has changed. And so I have changed. I don’t say “never” when it comes to yoga anymore. I have learned that some poses I have to practice on my own as well, especially my 2012 goal pose of handstand away from the wall. Yesterday I held that pose for a few seconds. There comes a point when you are working on a pose, that you know that you have discovered the secret of the pose, and it becomes easier to practice. Yesterday was the day I finally “hit” handstand. You know you hit it when you want to do it all the time. As I walk around my home, I am eyeing up every wall space (I still practice near a wall, just in case…) and I will occasionally just flip myself up into handstand, just for the fun of it. Yes, it becomes fun!

So I am asking you, reminding you, to go back to your 2012 goal poses (they will be back on the poster of yoga poses this week) and renew your interest in them, dedicate the next month to a regular practice of them both in the studio and at home. And then I ask you to start considering your 2013 yoga goal pose. We will record these in a couple weeks.



Upcoming Events -  Please Read to the End – Yoga Retreat to Colorado Rockies??

You Betcha!

Saturday Morning Yoga – December 1, 8:30 – 10:00 AM

Drop in fee of $10 or use it as a make-up class

Women’s Circle – WEDNESDAY, December 5, 6:30 – 8:00 PM Healing Meditation Introduction   

Love donation

Starting in January, I will be offering a separate meditation class following the Thursday night yoga class. There will be a sign up for the class, or you can drop-in. These classes will be dedicated toward helping heal ourselves as well as our loved ones as well as the planet. We will get to experience different forms of meditation. If you think that meditation is not attainable for you, then you may not quite get what it is all about. Meditation is about resting the mind in silence and space, allowing it time to recover and rejuvenate. It is NOT about sitting in a perfect state of peace while having no thoughts. Meditation is about establishing a different relationship with your thoughts for just a little while. You train yourself to place your attention where and when you want. Studies have found that meditation has profound self-healing implications for physical and mental health. In this circle, I will share information about different forms of meditation, and then we will spend about 30 minutes in a meditation. Dress comfortably. Some people prefer to sit while meditating, while others prefer to lie down. If you’d like to lie down, bring your mat along.

Christmas Week Yoga – Thursday, December 27, 6:15 – 7:30 PM Drop-in fee of $10; Saturday, December 29, 8:30 – 10:00 AM  Drop-in fee of $10 You must RSVP for these classes, and I will only run them if I get 4 or more people signed up.

COLORADO YOGA RETREAT WEEKEND!!! Thursday – Sunday Yoga Retreat to Buena Vista, Colorado June 6 – 9, 2013

I am finalizing plans for a retreat weekend in the Rocky Mountains. Did you know that Colorado Springs is this year’s #3 top destination vacation in America, and Denver is ranked at #5? Well, the Cabin at Trout Creek is located between these two destination vacations, situated on 3.5 wooded acres with the San Isabel National Forest outside the front door!  Included in this retreat is a private cabin that can accommodate up to 10 people, catered meals, a horseback trip into the mountains, car rental so we have the freedom to drive to town if we want to, and unlimited hiking! Also included are two daily classes of outdoor yoga, morning meditations, and evening Circles. This yoga retreat into the Colorado Rockies will be a venture you never forget as you commune with nature. The cost of the retreat is $525 plus your flight transportation, which I will help you find the best deals, and you will actually get your tickets yourself (it’s very easy to order online these days). I have found tickets prices to Denver for $250, but I know we can get that rate down to around $200.

A $200 deposit is required when you sign up. If we have more than 7 people attending, we can drop the total cost another $50 to $100! So let me know if you are interested. I need to confirm the dates in the next couple weeks.


November 18, 2012


Sacral Chakra (2nd Chakra)

Last week, many of you told me after class that you were really feeling your spine after our practice. That is because we really worked with the root chakra through our breathing. By focusing on the 3-part breath, we recognized how interactive our spines are with our breathing, and by taking more attention to our deep breathing, we can strengthen our spines as well as work with our balance and stability. It's all connected, and our yoga practice helps us to be more aware of this connectedness!

This week we address the sacral chakra, which is the second chakra of the seven main chakra system. In yoga, we take this practice to our hips. Expect to work with the hips and glutes this week. We will also be working with Dancer Pose. Yay! 

I found a wonderful article on balancing the sacral chakra, which I am including here:

6 Ways to Balance Your Sacral Chakra

Have you ever met someone who radiates warmth and sincere friendliness without coming on too strongly or seeming clingy? You’ve likely just encountered someone with a balanced sacral chakra. This person is open to the world around them. They have energy, compassion, groundedintuition, emotional stability and a zest for life. On the other hand, though, an out of whack sacral chakracan cause many problems.

Your sacral chakra is located in your lower abdomen, about one to two inches below your naval. When out of balance symptoms include—but aren’t limited to—attachment issues, sexually-related guilt, timidity, emotional volatility, hypersensitivity, and trust issues. A person can act both completely disconnected and cold towards others if this chakra is under-active or needy and emotionally dependent if the chakra is over-active. This chakra is your most important emotional center and because of this, at one time or another, most of us will experience an imbalance here. So let’s look at six simple ways to balance your sacral chakra.
1. Hip-opening yoga postures.  If you’ve ever taken a yoga class, you’ve likely heard a teacher say at least once that we store emotional and physical tension in our hips—hence yoga’s many hip-openingpostures. This directly connects to your sacral chakra. If you doubt at all the validity of this, notice where you grip or clench your muscles the next time you’re in a stressful situation. It’s likely your throat area (another emotional center) and your hips and lower abdomen. Remember also that your hips move in many directions— even though many people think of hip-openers as external rotation only. While it’s ideal to do a few postures that stretch your hips through their full range of motion, holding one pose and focusing on completely letting go is a great place to start. My personal favorite is cow pose, but bound angle is another ideal asana to hold and breathe into.
2.  Dance like no one’s watching. Dancing is one of the best—and easiest—ways to open your sacral chakra. So close the door, turn on your favorite music, and move. For double the cleansing effects, get out with friends as you move your hips to your favorite rhythm.
3. Tone up. While learning to let go of unnecessary muscular gripping and tension is ideal for chakra health throughout your body, it’s also important to take care of your body and keep your muscles strong and healthy. One of the main reasons to have a physical yoga practice is to make the body a fit—no pun intended—vehicle for the spirit and to prepare your body for seated meditation (another reason for hip-opening postures), and the lower abdominals are frequently an area that people let go. Some of my favorites for strong lower abs are boat pose (really hug the knees in towards the chest), pendant pose and yogic leg lifts.
4. Visualize orange. Orange is the sacral chakra’s color. Imagine a bright, healing orange glow filling up your entire lower abdomen—keeping in mind that we’re three dimensional. I have SI joint problems and often focus specifically on this region, so feel free to send your breath—and the color orange—to any particular area of disease or tension.
5. Balance your other chakras. A severe imbalance in one chakra almost always means imbalances in other chakras as well. (They work as a system.) Your throat chakra in particular has strong connections to your sacral chakra. The next time you practice your deep hip-opening posture of choice, notice if you feel a release in your throat area as well (double pigeon/fire log pose is wonderful for this). You can also try working a pose like bridge that allows you to connect with many of your chakras at one time; flowing slowly in and out of the posture as you connect your breath and movement.
6. Let go. You’ll see me write this a lot in my blogs, but learning to let go—of unhealthy emotions, people, and memories—is so important. When we learn to let go of the baggage that we don’t need to carry, we create space and energy for new and better opportunities.
In life, it’s all too easy to become emotionally closed off or overly dependent on the people around us. Learning to trust our intuition, yet not be ruled by our emotions, is something that—like many worthwhile things—takes practice. I hope these tips for sacral chakra balancing inspire you on your journey to be your best—and healthiest—self.
Published July 1, 2012 at 11:50 AM

Housekeeping Items

Thanksgiving Day - no classes 

Thursday, December 27 6:00 - 7:15 PM drop-in class - RSVP $10

Saturday, December 29 8:30 - 9:45 AM drop-in class - RSVP $10

There is a benefit for Mary Pat Fjelstad Kathy Selenek's sister, which I want to share with you because it looks like it is going to be a really fun community event for a very good cause. Mary Pat was recently diagnosed with her third bout of cancer. This benefit is to help cover the costs of her treatment after insurance costs. Mary Pat is missing work because her treatment is quite painful and draining on her physical body, and that means that her family's daily living expenses, plus her medical expenses outside what insurance covers, are not being met right now. Kathy is bringing tickets to class every Tuesday and Thursday for this December 1 benefit, if you are interested in buying tickets from her. There are many other local businesses selling tickets as well, and if you are on Facebook, you can check out all the great silent auction items that are included at the benefit https://www.facebook.com/events/172068036266638/ . Oh, and did I mention there is a great band playing songs from Journey, Styx, and REO? Arch Allies http://www.archallies.com/. Pre-sale benefit tickets are $25 each and $30 at the door. I have an event earlier but plan to attend afterward. This is going to be a really great event and we hope to raise a lot of money for Mary Pat and her family.

Finally, I wish to THANK YOU for continuing to join me on your mats each week. There are times during my week that I stop and take a deep breath of gratitude for each of you being in my life. There are times in class when I get tears in my eyes to see you beautiful people on the mats with me. Individually, you each cross my mind throughout the week. I am extremely grateful for your being in my life!

Namaste and Peace!


November 11, 2012

Let the Holiday Season Begin!

Did I just make you gulp? I apologize for that. I felt the same way, yesterday, as I was preparing my spruce tip planters and window box before the cold set in today. But we are officially into the Holidays now, as the commercials on TV remind us. As I have been sharing with my classes over the past week: "Breathe in love. Breathe out love." It really is that simple.

Today, while sharing the day with a very energetic group of women, I was reminded how important our breath work is to our chakra system. We practice our yoga breathing to open our lungs as deeply as we can. We practice our yoga breathing to bring healing oxygen into the body while releasing toxins from  the body. And we also practice our yoga breathing to awaken and align our chakra system, which encompasses our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual bodies. 

In the coming weeks, we are focusing our practice on the chakra systems once again. A great place to take our practice during the busy Holidays! 

Just a reminder, I will be opening up the potential for drop in classes the week of Christmas: Thursday, December 27 evening and Saturday, December 29 morning.


October 28, 2012



Class Updates and Our Spine!!

Just a reminder of where all the classes stand at this point.

Home Studio classes – last Tuesday is Nov. 6; last Thursday is Nov. 1. New classes start the following week. THERE ARE STILL OPENINGS IN THE AM CLASSES.

Eden  Prairie classes – last Monday class is Nov. 5, new classes start Nov. 19; last Thursday class is Nov. 1, new classes start Nov. 8

Sun Path – last class is Nov. 5. Be thinking if you want to start a new session after that.

West Junior High – last class is Dec. 12, however, we have no classes scheduled for Nov 6 (conferences) or Nov 13, the dates I was originally going to be in Mexico. We can bring Nov. 13 back on the calendar and delete Dec. 12 from this schedule. Be thinking about that before Tuesday.

East Junior High – last class is Nov. 21

Eagle Creek – last class is THIS Wed, Oct. 31. Be thinking if you want to start a new session after that.

November Saturday yoga class is THIS Saturday at 8:30-10:00AM. RSVP by Thursday night. $10 drop-in.

November Women’s Circle on The Significance of 11:11 on Monday, November 5 at 6:30. Cost is $30, which is the cost of the t-shirt you will receive, or $10.


Please let me know if you are interested in joining any of these classes!


Our Spines

You know how much I enjoy sharing information about our bodies as we move through our yoga class. They amaze me, and the more I learn, the more I want to share! In class, we talk about all muscles along the spine and on the back. I wanted to share a visual with you. I feel that , as we work with our spines, visualizing the muscles and spine allows us to further our work.

Our spine is made up of layers of muscles, and that is why we sometimes feel a tightness that might be in the deeper layers of these muscles. The Spine


The deepest layer of muscles attaches along the back of the spine bones, connecting the vertebrae. The middle layer of muscles, strap-shaped, run up and down over the lower ribs and rib cage and cross to the lower back. The muscles closest to the skin’s surface run from the back of the vertebrae to the shoulder blades. Other muscles wrap around the rib cage and connect to the shoulders.

Yoga helps to both strengthen and relax our spinal muscles. As I mention in class, every single yoga pose involves our spine. Even our breathing allows the muscles to stretch and then relax.

I look forward to bringing our attention to our spines in yoga this week!



October 21, 2012


New Yoga Schedule  -  Holiday Yoga 2012 Schedule


Classes begin THURSDAY, November 8 and run through Thursday, December 20. 

There will be NO CLASS on Thanksgiving, Thursday, November 22.

Tuesdays: 8:15AM, 6:00PM, 7:15PM (Advanced Class)

Thursdays: 8:15AM, 6:15PM

6 classes (1/week) $50

12 classes (2/week) $90

Please reserve your mat on the floor now. We do have a waiting list for evening classes, so you get the first priority.

New T-Shirts at Jill Sand Consulting!!


I am so pleased to present the latest specially designed shirts at JSC! I worked with Laurie Wondra, one of our guest speakers at the Women's Circles, to come up with this very special and unique t-shirt. 

This season's t-shirt represents the Dancer's Pose, a pose that aligns all of our chakras. I have been working with Laurie and Double Take Promotional products for the past few months to bring you this exceptional, one of a kind t-shirt. Printed on a royal blue burnout that is made from the same soft material as our previous shirt, this t-shirt represents all of the seven chakra colors!

Laurie inspired the Opening the Portal 11:11 message on the shirt. Many of us have been seeing 11:11 message on our clocks and phones at regular intervals. There is so much to the message of 11:11, but in short, we are reminded that we are manifesting our greatest desires, and the 11:11 can be looked at as a doorway, or portal, for making our dreams come true! More information on the significance of Numerology and 11:11 will be offered at the November 5 Women's Circle, and Laurie is offering a one day energy retreat on Sunday, November 11 (11/11) to help open our own personal portals through meditation, journaling, and energy work.




November Women’s Circle – Numerology and the Significance of 11:11


Many of us have reported how often we are drawn to look at the clock at precisely 11:11 or 1:11, and we feel there is an importance to those numbers. If I see those numbers, I stop what I am doing and meditate for that minute, clearing my thoughts of any negativity and bringing thoughts of peace into my heart.

In the study of numerology, the 11:11s are very significant. In this Circle, you will be learn more about the significance of 11:11, and especially how it plays out in world peace, as well as the peace of this country. With the elections the day after our Circle, the timing couldn’t be any better. I am going to step away from party politics for a minute and say this: it doesn’t matter WHICH party takes control of the presidency OR Congress. We are already too divided. And both parties take equal credit for this division. What does matter, is how we respond to this division. That is why this Circle is so important!

We will be engaged in a guided healing mudras series for the planet. We are setting the groundwork for the even more significant date of November 11 (11:11), which is a portal day. This will be discussed within the Circle as well. 

I encourage you to check out this 4 minute video, The 11:11 Phenomena 


Join me for a very special evening! There is a cost of $30, which includes the new t-shirt that I have created along with Laurie Wondra for just this celebration!



October 14, 2012

Boy, this week I was hit full force with that time of year considered a "joint season" in Ayurveda, which is the vulnerable time of year when it's easy to catch a cold or get sick if our life gets off balance or is moving too fast. For many, it's not so easy to slow down from a busy summer, but for me, my life kicks into gear in the fall, as I add 5 more classes to my fall schedule. I guess it should have come as no surprise when I found my muscles so achy and tired that I knew I would not be able to teach. My sinuses were pushing against my ears and my glands were tender. I forced myself to pay attention to my body's needs and literally went off the grid for about 24 hours. By Thursday morning, I was back on the mat feeling 100% better with plenty of energy to finish off my week!

A couple weeks ago I came across an article by Melina Meza, a yoga teacher and nutrition expert. She offered some preventative measures for keeping ourselves from getting run down by the weather transitions. I am sharing some of her ideas here today.

1. Simplify our diet. In the fall, we should transition to three warm, square, well-balanced, easy to digest meals. Each of us have different dietary needs, but since we become less active, we are reminded that we don't need to eat as much during this time of year. Eat until we are comfortably full. Some people like to do a short cleanse during this time of year.

2. Meditate. Consider adding a regular meditation practice (standing or sitting) to our morning. This can be as short as five to ten minutes a day. The concentration and focus for meditation can be extremely healthy and help reduce stress or anxiety around the new routines or seasons. As a side note, I plan to add a half hour meditation to my home yoga schedule after the holidays on Thursday evenings. I hope you'll be able to join me!

3. Sun Salutations. I have been mentioning in my classes for the past few weeks that it is a good practice for us to begin working with a few sun salutations every day. Besides warming up our joints and muscles, the salutations enhance circulation, decrease inflammation around the organs, decrease stress and improve digestion. When combined with our three-part yoga breath, we get the added benefits of moving our nervous system from the sympathetic to the parasympathetic, which is where our body responds and we burn the most fat. If you aren't sure of the three part breath or the sun salutations, visit my website at http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/apps/videos/ where I can guide you through each of these. 

4. Balance. This is all about moderation! Moderation is key in getting us through transitions without getting sick. Keep an eye on how we spend our time and energy at work, in our social lives, on the computer and while spending money. We may need to establish some stronger boundaries in our lives so we can say "no" more frequently and nourish ourselves more.

5. Be creative. Just this week, I got hit with the creativity bug. I am currently looking for others to join me in finding a class or series of classes to attend that involve making art or sculptures or taking pictures or something along those lines. Interested? Let me know! Let's make this time of year extra special by becoming creative!

This week, I am not meeting with Sun Path, East Junior High, or Eagle Creek because of conferences and inservice day. I will see you ladies back on the mat next week!

Enjoy this Indian Summer that is coming up!


October 7, 2012



Hello Yogis!

Boy, my cup runneth over after a full day of training with Yogafit this Sunday! It has actually been a week with much focus on yoga for women over 40, so if you are a man reading this, you can probably just forward it to your female friends. Just kidding! I am on information overload and will need to break things down another time, but I did learn something very important and worth passing along to everyone.

Many of us complained over the summer of weight gain. For some of us, it is because of hormone changes in our bodies. Doctors recommend that we need to get at least 3 hours of exercise a week to lose weight, but if we are menopausal, we need to INCREASE our exercising to 5 hours a week! That is right, ladies, we need to kick it in gear. I have been sharing with many of you that a really great way to meet this requirement is to practice our sun salutations series when we do not attend yoga classes. On non-yoga days, just ten minutes of yoga a day can be the difference between feeling sluggish and adding pounds around our middles and bringing energy to our bodies while getting the heart rate up to a good pace. If we have another ten minutes, we should sustain that practice by working with our “tricky” poses that we have set as our goals for 2012. Ten to twenty minutes a day. We ALL have that time to take for ourselves!

In addition to increasing our daily exercise time, we need to re-examine our portion control of the foods we eat. If we are in our 40s, our bodies no longer require the amount of food we ate when we were younger. Therefore, we need to start decreasing our portions of our meals. I did not say diet, nor deprive. Just cut back.

Now, some of us are thinking, yeah, but what can I REALLY do? I mean, isn’t this hereditary? Or don’t I have too many issues going on with my body? We need to stop making these excuses, my friends! If you don’t believe me, watch this very inspiring 3 minute video. We are NEVER too old to start yoga, and we should NEVER limit ourselves because of our preconceived notions.



The peace within me recognizes the peace within you! Namaste




September 30, 2012

Hello Yogis! What a beautiful weekend this has been! Jeff and I are on our way out for some hiking today. Make sure you take some time to play during these summer-like days!

Please RSVP for this Monday's Women's Circle, Telling Our Stories, by noon on Monday. I spent the weekend pulling together the final details, and it promises to be a Circle with profound healing for ourselves and our loved ones.

This week, I ran across a great article worth passing along. It is called 8 Tips for Building Strength in Your Yoga Practice. If you are listening to me while practicing your yoga (I know, sometimes it's easy to tune out and just move your body, lol), you are aware that I often remind you to work in a place of strength and stretch, avoiding strain and pain. But we can often just let our thoughts go during yoga and not get the complete benefit from our practice: working toward a stronger practice. Enjoy Betty Riaz' article!


Strength. What does it mean to the non-athletic folks like myself?  When I think of the word, I reminisce about Popeye eating his spinach or Arnold “pumping it up” barbell-style. Then I remind myself that strength is not just about bulging biceps or abs of steel. For yogis, strength means honor, a stoic disposition, and wiping ego from your physical self. Strength is built from both a body and mind connection. 

Here are 8 unique tips to help find your own strength within your yoga practice:

1.     Find your edge. Practice to the place where you stretch your potential. Get to know your limits in a safe, mindful way.

2.     Develop body awareness. Your body is giving you signals all the time, especially if you move into a posture and feel a twitch or pain. Observe your movements closely and adjust to achieve a smooth, safe, efficient practice.

3.     Get grounded. Find your feet, position them until you feel stable and grow roots. Strong postures grow from deep foundations.

4.     Breathe to deepen. It’s easy to forget that our breath is the strength behind every posture. Ujjayi (yoga) breath allows us to make an intimate connection between breath, body and mind. When the breath is controlled, the mind follows.

5.     Crunch your core. Sounds tough, but if you engage your bandhas (solar plexus, belly button and pelvic floor muscles) enough, you will ignite the muscles spanning your abdomen and mid- to low back. Strength radiates from a toned core!

6.     Go beyond the practice – seriously. It’s only a practice; find the space in your mind that takes you beyond the physical realm and into an ethereal space.

7.     Remove the competition. The truth is, there isn’t any competition. Only in one’s mind.  If you’re feeling competitive in a yoga class, take your focus inward and release judgment of yourself and others.

8.     Steady your mind. In the Yoga Sutras, the asana practice is described as “the cessation of the turnings of the mind.” Meditation is the quickest way to stabilize your racing thoughts. Although some may doubt that meditation can help your yoga practice, meditation IS your yoga practice. Become a meditative, moving life force on the mat!

Don’t forget to have fun! Enjoy finding your own personal strength; practice and all is coming.



September 23, 2012


Hello Yogis!

This week, we take a look at Butterfly Pose. Butterfly is the perfect pose to stretch out the hips and lower back, but it can be a difficult pose for many of us to get into. 

From our seated position, we take the soles of our feet together and roll side to side on our sits bones, allowing the hips to open out and loosening the groin muscles. We inhale as we lengthen our spines, and our exhale takes our upper bodies into a forward fold. 


In Butterfly Pose, we want our spines to be in a long, neutral position. That means, for many of us, we will not fold forward very far. We also want to keep our throats open and neutral, avoiding tucking the chin, which can pull on upper back and neck muscles. 

Many of us will notice our shoulders wanting to roll forward, as we are weaker in our pectoral muscles and chest muscles. To strengthen the chest muscles, we might take our hands behind us as we roll the shoulders back and open up the chest. (See below.)


Besides benefiting from the stretch and strength of Butterfly, the pose is good for the kidneys and is highly recommended for urinary problems. If sciatica is acting up, we would not fold forward. Other modifications include sitting elevated on a pillow, block, or rolled up blanket.

I look forward to seeing you on the mat this week!


September 16, 2012

Hello Yogis!

Late summer or early fall? Take your pick, but I do believe early fall is just around the corner this week! Many of us are noticing the change in the seasons through colds and allergies. I came across this great article on Chinese Medicine Tips for Late Summer, worth sharing (see below). In our yoga practice, we can help ourselves to build up our immunity through a regular practice of lunges.

Our lunges are associated with the second chakra, the sacral chakra. The location of the second chakra is the lower abdomen to the naval, and the areas in the body governed by the second chakra are the hips, sacrum, lower back, sexual organs, stomach, bladder, spleen and kidneys. All of these areas help keep our immune system functioning properly. 

We incorporate lunges into each practice in our sun salutations. There are various ways to practice lunges. The lunge on our knee is one that most people start with, to start opening up and stretching the hip flexors, the muscles in front of the hip bone. From there, we might add twists. Or even take the knee off the ground. 

All of these are options remind us to find the place were we feel stretch and strength, working from that point. As always, in our yoga practice, if we feel strain or pain, we would back out of the pose.

I look forward to seeing you on the mats! And I can't wait to meet the Sun Path staff this Monday afternoon!


Chinese Medicine Tips for Late Summer

Most of us only think of four seasons. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), we have five seasons, the fifth one being “late summer”.

Late summer is most related to the TCM element of Earth and it acts as a turning point for the hot, active, Yang energy of the spring and summer into the cooler, storing, Yin energy of the fall and winter. This season often starts out quite hot, but calms into cool, and in the northern hemisphere it usually lands in August and September.

If you have ongoing—or even occasional—digestive troubles, this time of the year is particularly important for you, as it is the season that the TCM digestive organs, the Stomach* and Spleen*, are most active. The Spleen is the TCM equivalent of the physical organ, the pancreas, which produces digestive enzymes and helps regulate blood sugar levels via the secretion of insulin and glucagon.

When the hot weather hits and you want to sit back with an icy cold sweet drink, don’t overdo it. Too much cold and sweet can impair your digestive system, leaving you feeling even more lethargic and foggy-headed. Try something lightly sweet with lots of moisture, like watermelon, melon, or cantaloupe. Check out other fruits and vegetables that are locally, seasonally available in your area. Fruits like peaches, cherries, apples, apricots, and plums are nice and sweet, without overloading your sweet tooth. Beets, cucumber, corn, and zucchini can also be lightly sweet and juicy.

As the weather cools, you might want to incorporate some warming foods that support the Earth elements. Foods like ginger, squash, pumpkin, fennel, and mustard greens help your digestive system.

This is also a great time of the year to start or restart a meditative practice. Most of us spend a lot of time “in our heads”—planning, organizing, thinking, and worrying. This constant mental processing can impede digestive function, as the Earth element is our processing centre. A weak digestive system can make us feel foggy-headed, and an overanalyzing, worrying mind can impede our assimilation of food. Spending time outside of our mind chitter-chatter can help us to become more nourished, both literally and figuratively.

Because of the Earth dual processing role—of thoughts and of food—make sure to focus on eating when you are eating rather than multitasking work, TV, or deep emotional conversations (light and enjoyable talk is fine) with mealtimes.

The Spleen energy also relates to the muscles. Muscles need to be used. But not abused. Contract and move your muscles, but also stretch and relax them. There is no “bad” time to exercise, but if you want to work on the Stomach and Spleen, the times of day related to these TCM organs are 7-9 a.m. and 9-11 a.m., respectively.


Finally, the sound that most resonates with the Earth element is your own voice in song. Don’t worry if you were not meant to have a singing career; enjoy singing out loud to help relax your mind and lift your spirits. You might enjoy chanting, and kundalini yoga is a great supportive yoga for this season.

Thank your Earth element organs, the Spleen and Stomach, as they work hard for you this season!



September 9, 2012

Namaste Yogis!

It feels like fall in our mornings, it feels like summer during our days, and then the evenings feel more like fall again. Ahhh, late summer weather! Perfect! I will take this weather through November, please. (Just offering it up to the Universe! Haha!)

This week, I am adding BRX Studio back to my Monday mornings, Junior High West to Tuesday afternoon, Junior High East and Eagle Creek (5 Tibetan rites classes) to Wednesday afternoons. Next week, Sun Path gets added to my Monday afternoons. Okay, body, the summer is officially over and it is time to move it back into second gear! If I haven't said it before, I LOVE MY JOB!! I can't wait to see all those faces that I missed seeing over the summer, and I look forward to meeting new yogis as well! If any of these new classes look like they will work with your schedule, please let me know!

Of the basic yoga poses, our warrior poses are most often found in most yoga classes you might participate in. New yogis (and more seasoned yogis!) might question, how does a practice that emphasizes non-violence include "warrior" poses? This is the story of the yoga warrior.

There was once a powerful king named Daksha whose daughter Uma (or sometimes referred to as Sati) fell in love with the lord of universal consciousness, Shiva. Daksha was not pleased about this. He decided to throw a party and invite everyone but Shiva. While Shiva didn't care about being left out (he was the lord of universal consciousness, after all!), Sati was incensed, so angry that she burst into flames (or threw herself into a fire, depending on the story version) and died.

Devastated, Shiva threw one of his dreadlocks down to the earth to make a warrior demon, Virabhadra. Virabhadra cut off the king's head and trampled on Indra, the god of war, creating total havoc. 

For any yogi who has struggled through Warrior I pose (Virabhadrasana I), it may come as no surprise this pose was inspired by cosmic chaos, death and destruction. Many yogis, especially beginners, feel challenged by the pose as they struggle between extension of some muscles and contraction of other muscles, adding in a twist and a backbend, internal and external rotation of the thighs and lower legs, and strength and flexibility.

So what is the lesson of the warrior, from those of us who come to yoga as a non-harming practice? Well, according to mythical lore, the yogi is really a warrior of his/her own ignorance. It's about rising up out of our own limitations. It is a humbling pose. If we stay it for any length of time, that becomes evident. And so we can see our Warrior I pose as fighting the good fight within ourselves. It is the triumph of our spirit, a main theme in yoga.

In our practice on the mat, we may try out several modifications for Warrior I to get the most from the pose without disturbing any of our physical limitations, such as backache, shoulder ache, or sciatica.

A full Warrior I pose includes a backbend and arms reaching toward the sky, with our hips and shoulders stacked and parallel to our fronts of our mats. (See below) However, for many of us with back, shoulder, or sciatica issues, we will modify the poses if we feel ANY strain or pain in the pose.

Our modified Warrior I pose takes the arms out of the pose if we are feeling shoulder or back pain, and we will lean forward if we are dealing with sciatica issues. (See below)
As with any pose, there are modifications to help us experience the strength and stretch without feeling any strain or pain, so please let me know if you are feeling any discomfort and I will offer modifications during class. As always, it is okay to take a rest during class when we need it as well. LISTEN TO OUR BODIES!!

Peace and JOY!


September 3, 2012


Hello All!

The new home schedule is underway, Eden Prairie begins their new session this week, and the Shakopee Schools start their schedule next week! If you are interested in picking up another class, and there is one that might work (see my schedule below) just let me know. I know the schools are always open to having others join in their classes to fill them up more!

We are going back to the basics this week: downward facing dog pose. Downward dog is a pose we can incorporate into our daily schedule. Just holding the pose for 1-2 minutes each day allows us to check in with our bodies: notice where we are limber, tight or fatigued; observe what the pose feels like from day to day. Take the moment to settle our mind and connect with our breath.

Downward facing dog is the perfect place to work with the imbalances in our lives. Body-builders use the pose to balance their muscle mass and flexibility. Gymnasts have the opposite problem and need to use the pose to strengthen and hold their overstretched muscles. The rest of us come to downward dog with our needs somewhere in between.

For some of us, down dog is the perfect place for stretching and opening; for others, it is learning to stabilize our joints with muscular effort. For everyone, down dog uses the strength in our arms and legs to fully and evenly stretch the spine. It stretches the hips, hamstrings and calves as it strengthens the quadriceps and ankles. It opens the chest and shoulders and tones the arms and abdominal muscles. It even tones the hands a feet, preparing us for standing poses and arm balances.

To get the most out of down dog, if you have tight shoulders, place your hands slightly further apart and angle your hands slightly outward. (Do not do this if you are moving through a half series.) Protect your elbows from hyperextension by pressing your inner upper arms away from each other until your biceps engage. For healthy neck placement, bring your ears in line with your upper arms t align the neck and head along the same line of your spine. If the back of your legs are very tight, bend your knees or try stepping your feet as wide as the mat. (Again, don’t move from this position of the feet.)

For those of us who are working toward our arm balances and inversions like head stand, dolphin pose is a wonderful place to get many of these same benefits as downward facing dog.

Saturday Yoga and Women's Retreat

Combined for the month of September! 

Living an Abundant Life!

Saturday, September 8

8:00 - 5:00 

For more information, check out the Women's Circle at right 

RSVP by Thursday, September 6

Limited to 10 attendees


Jill Sand Consulting Fall 2012 Yoga Schedule









JSC Home


JSC Home













DSF Men’s






DSF Noon


3:30 Sun Path

2:45 SJH West

3:15 SJH East






4:30 EC  5TR





JSC Home


JSC Home 6:15-7:15




JSC Advanced




BRX – Prior Lake Fitness Studio         EPPD – Eden Prairie Police Department                 

DSF – Dakotah Sport and Fitness                   

Shakopee Schools – Sun Path, Shakopee Junior High (East and West), Eagle Creek                                                                       

5TR – 5 Tibetan Rites Class (45 minutes)


August 26, 2012


Hello Fellow Yogis!

Our new schedule starts this week at the home studio, new classes start at Eden Prairie next week, and schools, you are pulling together your groups, right? I already have Junior High East scheduled for Wednesdays at 3:15. My calendar does fill fast, so get back to me ASAP! So far I have available Mondays and Tuesdays after school...

I also have a noon class time available for businesses that are interested in bringing yoga to their employees. Contact me for more information!

This week, our yoga classes will be working with side bends and back bends. Many of us have extremely tight hip flexors. It comes from sitting at desks all day and leaning over children as well. Those muscles start to tighten up, which strains our lower back. So to remedy this situation, we not only must STRETCH the hip flexors, but we need to STRENGTHEN the back muscles, especially the lower back muscles. That's why we are spending more time with our bridge pose and wheel pose in class. Our side bends and back bends will help us focus on these areas as well. You all know that I have struggled for years with chronic low back issues on my left side. Only through working on my back bends, have I found my back to be much stronger and I suffer from minimal back flare-ups now. We pay attention to where we are at though, only pressing on to the next level when we can breathe easily in our bridge pose. Remember: stretch and strength is good. Strain and pain is bad. 

Saturday Yoga and Women's Retreat

Combined for the month of September! 

Living an Abundant Life!

Saturday, September 8

8:00 - 5:00

We create our own destinies, and what we expect from the world is exactly what we get! Do you want more than what is presently in your life? Then you will want to join me for this important retreat. For the past several years, I have a positive affirmation sitting beside my bed. At least once a week, I remind myself to repeat it. It's an easy one to remember: I am happy, I am healthy, I am wealthy, I am wise. That's it. Since I started repeating this affirmation, I have seen those elements come into my life. I truly believe I am all of those! This retreat begins the day with a yoga class. Following is a 90 minute workshop on Abundant Health. There will be an hour long lunch and free time, followed by another 90 minute workshop on Abundant Wealth. After an afternoon break, we'll have another yoga class with meditation. The day will end with a Circle.

Full Day Retreat (including meals and snacks)  $50

Drop-in Yoga class only $10

RSVP by Thursday, September 6

Limited to 10 attendees

(you are the first invited; I will be opening this up to

my entire mailing list mid-week)



August 19, 2012

Peace, Yogis!!

I have always loved that tag line, "Or is it?" ever since I was a fourth grade teacher with a special needs child who was so brilliant. He would come up with the most imaginatively clever ideas and explore them with the class, and if someone doubted him, he would add that tagline, in his most "Doctor Evil" (Austin Powers) voice. Still makes me chuckle!

We had a week of cooler weather, which made me get into a harvesting mode this weekend, but I understand that we will be heating back up to what summer is SUPPOSED to be like, low 80s and sunny (haha, my opinion only!). So with the reprieve from the intense heat, we have to heat our own bodies up just a bit more in our practice. This week's classes promise to take you deeper into your hips and abdominal muscles. I was practicing this morning, and I was practically purring, it felt so good!

This is our LAST week of the summer schedule, and we start our new schedule NEXT week. Please note the schedule (especially the CHANGE in Thursday evening's class!)

Namaste and JOY!

Fall 2012 Outdoor Yoga Class Schedule



Tuesday 8:15 – 9:15AM

Tuesday 6:00 – 7:00PM

Tuesday 7:15-8:30PM Advanced

Thursday 8:15-9:15AM

Thursday 6:15 – 7:15PM (change in time!!)

I know there are several of you who hurry to classes at 6:00, and so I was able to accommodate the Thursday class. Because of the Advanced class, I cannot push the Tuesday class times back any further. :)

Tell your friends that there is still room in the Advanced class on Tuesday evenings, and the morning classes still have room. A waiting list has started for the Tuesday and Thursday evening regular yoga classes.

Saturday Partner Yoga Class

Saturday, September 8

8:30 - 10:00AM

This class will be so much fun, as we experience our poses in new ways. Partners will assist one another, and we can also get playful with the poses! Many options will be available to us!

September Women's Circle/ Retreat

I am very excited to be planning a day long retreat on the subject of ABUNDANCE! Look for a morning and afternoon yoga class, a workshop, and circle. Food and free time included!

I am still being held hostage to Jeff's fishing and hunting schedule. More information coming soon (I hope).


August 12, 2012


It's hard to believe we are entering the final days of our summer yoga classes. It has been a wonderful summer of heat to take into our bodies for next January, as well as kitties to warm our hearts! As we start to move into cooler days (I know the heat is not done, but we know what is around the corner!), we start to bring more energy into our bodies. You'll notice that in our classes this week. (Unless it gets too hot, of course.) Many of us are working toward our 2012 yoga goals, and this week's classes remind us to work with those poses.

If you haven't yet signed up for fall yoga classes, please don't delay. My evening classes are nearly full. There is still room in the morning classes. We will stay outdoors until the weather forces us indoors.

Our fall home studio schedule:


Tuesday 8:15 – 9:15AM

Tuesday 6:00 – 7:00PM

Tuesday 7:15-8:30PM Advanced

Thursday Tibetan Yoga 7:45-8:15AM

Thursday 8:15-9:15AM

Thursday 6:00 – 7:00PM

Also, if you are seriously considering the Energy and Yoga Retreat this November, don't delay in signing up! There are 5 more spaces to fill, and we expect them to fill in the next few weeks. What do you get for $1620-$2170 plus flight (around $450)?
  • 7 days in the sunny Riviera Maya, lodging in a private home on a private beach with a private pool
  • All meals included
  • A private one-day excursion to Tulum and then the Cenotes, underground rivers
  • A massage with a local masseuse
These activities alone will beat any resort option you are looking at. But then, we offer:
  • Twice daily yoga on the beach with Jill
  • Daily Energy Circles with Laurie
  • A private intuitive reading session with Laurie
  • Women's Circles and Workshop with Jill
  • Group and individual daily meditations
  • Free time to explore the beach and explore your priorities
  • Plus many other "surprises" for those attending!


This Energy and Yoga Retreat offers an opportunity for personal growth while being in a warm, relaxing and supportive environment.

We hope you'll join Laurie and myself on this uplifting retreat. Open the portals to your heart's desires! 11:11:11 Contact me for information on registration.




One Day Women's Retreat
Date TBD in September
Living with Abundance!!
Manifesting a Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise Lifestyle



Saturday Yoga Class - Partner Yoga!
September 8, 2012
Bring a partner or come by yourself and I'll partner you up!
$10 drop-in fee


August 5, 2012


Namaste All!

It seems hard to think about fall when today is such a perfect summer day! In fact, I am writing this while sitting outdoors, with kitties wandering over the keyboards! I will blame any spelling errors on them! Haha!

Below the Fall Schedules you will find a great article on summer heart opening. We have been working with this all summer long, as we lift and open our hearts. This week I shared with our yogis the idea of thinking about our front hearts being the center of our own love that we give and receive, while the back heart represents the love we receive from our Source of faith. With yoga, as with life, we work to balance the two: opening the front heart, and then opening the back heart. I love the article, because it also incorporates the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Heart.



Fall Yoga Schedule 

Our next ten-week session at the Home Studio begins the week of August 27. Classes will start outdoors and then move indoors as the weather dictates. I will be keeping one Tibetan Rites Yoga class, Thursday mornings from 7:45-8:15. It will precede the regular morning yoga class. This class is for all who want to continue their Tibetan Rites into the fall. We'll see if we get enough interested yoginis to make this happen!

JSC Home Studio Fall Schedule

Tuesdays 8:15-9:15AM (Regular Yoga), 6:00-7:00PM (Regular Yoga),

7:15-8:30PM (Advanced Yoga)

Thursdays 7:45-8:15AM (Tibetan Yoga), 8:15-9:15AM (Regular Yoga),

6:00-7:00PM (Regular Yoga)

These classes do fill up quickly, so please sign up right away to hold your spot.

I will be finalizing all my classes throughout the various locations in the next couple weeks, so watch for my complete schedule at that time.


Saturday Yoga Class - Partner Yoga!

Saturday, September 8 (avoiding Labor Day weekend) 8:30-10:00AM 

Bring a partner or come by yourself and I'll partner you up!



September Women's Circle - Saturday Yoga and Wellness Retreat!!

Jeff has informed me that he will be going on weekend fishing trip in September, dates not yet selected. I will be hosting a Saturday Yoga and Wellness Retreat on that day. I am pulling information together right now, and it looks to be a fun day which will include 2 yoga classes, a workshop, and a Circle.

10 classes (1/week) $75

20 classes (2/week) $140

30 classes (3/week) $195


JSC Eden Prairie Fall Schedule

Classes are starting to form at the Eden Prairie Police Department. Our new schedule there starts the week of September 3 (Labor Day, no classes) and goes through Monday, November 5 (make up day for Labor Day). This 9-week session includes bringing back our Tuesday Noon classes!

JSC Shakopee Schools Fall Schedule 

TBD. All interested staff will need to send out an email to their entire staff for interest and get back to me ASAP. My schedule will fill up quickly, so to ensure you get your favorite day and time, a quick response is necessary. Thank you!

More information to follow.

Registration is OPEN! 

Mayan Riviera Energy and Yoga Retreat 

November 7- 14, 2012 at Casa del Sol on the Mayan Riviera

Join Laurie Wondra and myself in taking advantage of the universal energies to assist us in moving forward through the portal of 11:11:11. This timeframe is the opening for the beginning of possibilities at a higher frequency. As we open and clear our energies, we create space for these refined energies to develop. When we are able to open to these higher dimensional energies, be develop greater spiritual gifts, or we become aware of the gifts we already had. We awaken to both.

This energy and yoga retreat focuses on the 7 chakras in the 3rd dimension plane, and then understanding and moving into the 4th and 5th dimensions of higher energy. Each higher dimension's energy frequency is more and more subtle and refined.

Contact myself or Laurie at laurie@yourlifecore.com 612-584-8673 to register. This retreat will fill fast, and so if you THINK this might be the right retreat for you, you are RIGHT ON! 

Yoga on the beach!!

Summertime Heart Openers from TCM and Yoga


In yoga, we are often reminded to work toward “opening the heart”. Doing so opens up the chest by creating greater space in the ribcage for the lungs and the heart. It also means allowing for the sharing of love and compassion. In the same way, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) relates to both the physical heart as well as the emotional and energetic *Heart. The physical heart pumps blood to the rest of the body. Its powerful muscles are in constant rhythmic motion. We all know that without this pump (or something to pump for it), we cease to live.

The TCM Heart connects to the Small Intestines and one of the functions of both organs is to absorb information from the outside world. The Small Intestines absorb food energy and nutrients. The Heart absorbs information about the emotional energies around us. For these two main functions, the Heart is considered the “king” organ in TCM.

Summertime is when the Heart and Small Intestine energies are at their peak, so summer is a particularly important time to practice opening your heart/Heart. In addition to practicing heart openers, you can try some of the following:

1.     Feel joy. When you experience the emotion of joy, you feed the Heart as that is its primary emotion. Seek out people and things that bring you joy.

2.     Give. Giving helps us connect with others and bring more joy into our lives. Remember to practice compassion with yourself as well and allow yourself to receive.

3.     Eat bitter foods. Bitter is the flavour related to the Heart and many of us do not eat enough bitter foods like bitter melon, olives, dandelion greens, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and bok choy. Even coffee, yerba mate, and dark chocolate are bitter foods that have some health benefits, but it is wise to limit these particular bitter foods.

4.     Exercise your heart. Practicing elevating your heart rate with exercise helps to strengthen it. Conversely, remember to practice slowing your heart rate with meditation and/or deep breathing exercises.

5.     Get your essential fatty acids from supplements or foods like  ground flax seeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, and fish oils. These key nutrients are important for cardiovascular health.

6.     Some heart-healthy herbs and supplements include hawthorn berries (Chinese herb shan zha), coenzyme Q10, magnesium, calcium, B3, B6, B12, and folic acid.

7.     Finally, manage your stress and get plenty of sleep.

 Take care of your heart/Heart and long live your “king”.

* To clarify the differentiation between the Traditional Chinese Medicine organ systems and the biological organ systems, all TCM organ names have been capitalized.

Dr. Melissa Carr is a registered Doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine with a B.Sc. in Kinesiology. After ten years of running her own practice, she has recently joined an integrative medicine team where she is still happily showing that an ancient medicine is also a progressive modern medicine.


July 29, 2012


For those of you who practiced yoga with me on Thursday and Friday last week, you know that two lovely little kitties joined our Thursday morning 5 Tibetan Rites class. They stuck around while I was gone all day, and literally fell out of the tree (to my surprise) as the evening yoga class began. By 11:00PM that night, as they made me aware they meant to stay, I decided I should feed them. I had been adopted by them, it appears!

Being who I am, I wondered why they had come to me at this time. Jeff and I had been discussing having another cat. He wasn't too excited about it, but I was starting to turn my thoughts toward it, though having kitties seems daunting to me! So I looked up cat energy, and these are the parts that resonated with me.

The kitties came during the Tibetan Rites. During the first rite of Spinning, we decide whether we want to increase our energy by rotating to the right or decrease our energy by rotating to the left. I had shared with the groups that I prefer to rotate to the left to decrease my energy. That is significant in cat energy: "The energy field of a cat rotates is a counter-clockwise direction, which is the opposite of a human energy field. Thus, cats have the ability to absorb and neutralize energy that affects humans in a negative way. This is part of the cats healing medicine." I have always been aware of the healing energy of yoga, and so this is significant for me.

"Cat's medicine includes independence, unpredictability, healing, curiosity, many lives, magic, mystery, cleverness, the ability to fight when cornered, seeing the unseen, Allows us to dream its dreams and protection. Love is represented by the cat." I think many of us admire many of these traits and wish to incorporate them in ourselves, and so I can understand the cat energy for the classes.

"At night you probably feel energized." Yep! 

"Cat encourages agility in both body and mind. You will be presented with new ideas and places. The cat gives you clearer perception. You have good organisational skills." This is all true, and the timing is perfect, as I am partnering up with Laurie Wondra in bringing you another retreat opportunity in November!

"The cat teaches us that the physical and spiritual worlds are not separate, but one, and is a good assistant for meditation." We begin to understand this at a deeper and deeper level each time we enter our meditations after our yoga classes are completed.

"Cat is a trustworthy teacher, guiding you into the world of self discovery and transformation." That is a huge reason why we take to the mat for our workout! We know we are not only changing our bodies, but we are changing our hearts and minds as well.

Wishing you a beautiful week, and we will see you on the mat!


Yogi and Boo Boo 2.jpg
Shy Boo Boo and mat-loving Yogi!


Derby Days Yoga - This Coming Saturday!!

Join me in this FREE class down by the Shakopee Amphitheater at 7:30-8:30 AM on Saturday, August 4th!


Mayan Riviera Energy and Yoga Retreat!!

Mark your calendar for November 7 - 14. We expect this retreat to fill up quickly. We hope to finalize plans in the

July 23, 2012

Wow, I am settling in from the trip to the Apostle Islands in northern Wisconsin this weekend, and it is hard to stay focused. And yet there is so much to share with you! THANK YOU to Andrea for filling in for my Thursday night class. It sounds like I left the class in great hands!

First of all, the yoga newsletter on incorporating yoga into our lives as a fitness practice. Not only are frequency and duration of importance in improving fitness levels through the practice of yoga, but balance within each class of our yoga practice is just as important. To improve muscular and cardio respiratory fitness, we practice sun salutations, flowing postures and standing poses, as well as our flexibility poses. How we perform these poses is important in preventing injury. That's why we practice a variety of poses (standing, seated, on the back) and ensure there is a balance in the particular areas addressed for each class. So once we are finished stretching the hamstrings in Forward Fold and Monkey, we balance that by coming up into Mountain, Camel, or Chest Expansion. We open the chest in Cow and then open the back in Cat. 

Balancing out the poses is essential when we work fitness into our yoga practice, which is different than all other fitness programs. Another fitness benefit unique to yoga is that, not only do we stretch muscles that have shortened, but we place equal emphasis on correcting muscles that have lengthened. For instance, in our Forward Fold or Seated Forward Fold, we focus on a lengthened spine, rather than our fingers touching our toes. 

Most importantly, yoga emphasizes proper alignment. We modify our poses to ensure that our alignment is correct. We bend our knees in Forward Folds, Downward facing Dog, and Monkey, to name a few. We lift our hearts in Mountain. We adjust our hips in Pyramid and Warrior I. Yogafit, which I received my training from, follows some basic physical therapy guidelines of repeated movements and sustained postures to affect our tissues positively, which improve our flexibility, strength, and movement patterns. With correct alignment, yoga can accomplish a similar result as physical therapy.

Our inversions like head stand and tripod stand, which many of us have started to work on this summer, also have great health benefits. Inversions upend our relationship to gravity. Inversions may also increase the efficiency of the cardiovascular, respiratory, lymphatic, and endocrine systems. We must be very careful that we are strong enough to work with the cervical region of the spine (the neck) before beginning our work with inversions. If we feel any strain or pain in the neck, that just tells us to work on strengthening that area more. Also, if we have high blood pressure, inversions should be avoided.


Shakopee Derby Days - FREE Yoga Class!! 

Grab your mat and join me down at the Shakopee amphitheater on Saturday, August 4 from 7:30-8:30 AM! Bring a friend who has been yoga-curious! Other supplies to bring are a blanket for under the mat, bug spray, water bottle, and any other comforts you prefer while on the mat. Any newcomers will need to sign a release waiver, so make sure they get there a few minutes early! http://www.shakopeederbydays.com/yoga


Mayan Riviera Energy and Yoga Retreat - November 7 -14, 2012!!

Mark your calendars and start setting aside some money. You are among the first to learn about a joint retreat adventure I am offering with Laurie Wondra, channeler of spirit. We will be working with the energy portal of 11:11:11 on 11-11-12. The New Moon follows on November 13. There will be so many opportunities to awaken our 7 chakras and then move into the higher chakras of our energy system. Meditations, circles, a private reading with Laurie, an excursion to Tulum, two classes of yoga each day, and lots of beach time. Many other surprises, and all in the privacy of a beach home! The cost will vary if you want a private or shared bedroom, but plan for around $1200+ for all expenses but flight. I have been checking flights, and I think you can get that around $500 for that time of year. I know this will fill up quickly, so if you are at all interested, please let me know right away.


Jill at the Fish Camp, Manitou Island, Apostle Islands


July 15, 2012

 This week I have been reminded of why I love yoga so much. Yoga offers us the opportunity for growth in our self-awareness. Our awareness is internalized, as demonstrated by many of us even closing our eyes during many poses to feel the pose. Yoga is non-competitive and process oriented. We can do it in a group, or we can work on our own. We move from one level to the next level, when we are ready for it. We play with a pose to see if we are ready for the next level. It builds bravery in us, as we remind ourselves, "Today I will try 'just this'." We set goals for ourselves. What do we realistically want to accomplish by the end of 2012? How far have we come with that goal? Do we need to spend more time during our "free time" to achieve that goal? What do I need assistance on, as I work toward my goal?


Earlier this week, I was texting back and forth with one yogini who was on vacation. I asked her to remember to do some yoga while on vacation. This is what she sent me.

It truly makes my heart swell when I see yoga coming off the mat! Isn't she beautiful? Later in the week, a couple that attends my classes at Dakotah came back from their trip out East, and they, too, had taken a couple yoga pose pictures. They brought them in to share with me. And that is the great thing about yoga. You can take it off the mat: onto the beach or dock, into a garden, at a museum, etc. The possibilities are endless! If you are on vacation, please strike a yoga pose, and then I dare you to take a picture and send it to me. :)

Here's a great, short video of a man taking yoga onto a surf board. Enjoy!


Speaking of vacation, just a reminder that I will not be in town this weekend. I am heading off to sail the Apostle Islands on Thursday morning. Andrea Kennedy, a yogini who has been with me for years, will be covering my Thursday evening class at the home studio, 6:15-7:30. If you're interested in attending a class with a different teacher, please drop by this class for a different yoga experience. You will love Andrea's energy! IN THE CASE OF RAIN, the class will be cancelled. If it is raining at 6:15, that will determine the class being cancelled. If it is not, Andrea will hold the class (at least until rain comes in, if that is the case). 

There is no class at Eden Prairie this Thursday, and Lesa is covering my Thursday and Friday classes at Dakotah this week.

I hope you enjoy this lovely summer weather. Remember to take the heat into your bones as you store it up for next January!


July 8, 2012

More Comparisons of Yoga to

Conventional Exercises

Hello all, and I hope you are enjoying the "cooler" weather outside! This week promises to be a perfect summer weather week with temperatures in the 80s. That will be a nice reprieve from the near 100-degree temperatures from last week!

We continue to explore comparisons of yoga to other forms of exercise this week. In yoga, we practice slow, dynamic and static movements. Conventional exercise works with rapid, forceful movements. The latter sets us up for more injuries to our muscles, tendons and ligaments, caused from over-stretching or tearing them because they have been pushed past their limits of stretching. In yoga, while we can still injure ourselves, especially if we are not listening to our bodies, we have a much lower risk of injuring ourselves. 

Because we continually work with our three-part yoga breathing in class, we keep our effort minimized and relaxed, while conventional exercise maximizes our effort, while producing similar results. Because of this maximized effort, we get fatigued in conventional exercise, with our breathing being taxed. In yoga, we are energized, with our breathing natural and controlled.

In yoga, we balance our activities of opposing muscled group work. Conventional exercises are imbalanced as they work with varying muscle groups. Think about the various activities that do not offer a balance: aerobic classes, biking, running, to name a few.

Yoga is perfect for the non-competitive person, in that it is process oriented. We continue to grow in our awareness of the poses and our bodies' responses to the poses. That awareness is internal, vs. external in other exercises. 

I look forward to seeing you on the mat this week!

Namaste and JOY!


PS Planning has started for the next yoga retreat! I am joining efforts with Laurie Wondra (Yourlife CORE) and Sue Johnson to host a retreat in Playa del Carmen in November. We are hoping to plan it around the New Moon, November 12, which is a Monday. I am hoping to offer a long weekend or full week option for those who may not get to get away for the entire week. So let's start saving our money!! I have a friend whose boyfriend offers excursions down there, and she is helping me put together a few options. Wouldn't a trip to Tulum be awesome? She said he puts together a really great trip there! More information to follow. I am also thinking about a one-day retreat here. I have started pulling together information for that. This must be a creative energy time, as my brain is buzzing with ideas! 

July 1, 2012


Greetings and Namaste!

It looks like summer has finally arrived. Yay!! As one who didn't care for the heat, I have learned, since outdoor yoga classes began several summers ago, to really embrace it now. I often find myself out on the deck reading a book or just staring off into nature. (Or, my husband would add, playing games on my phone. lol) For whatever reason, nature draws me to her these days, and it is truly a place to find some peace. If you are looking for some peace of mind, I suggest you step outside for a few minutes and just breathe!

Speaking of breathing, this past week, I began sharing information with you about moving our breathing from our sympathetic nervous system, top down breathing into the lungs, where we never quite get the air to the lower lungs, to our parasympathetic nervous system, breathing from the bottom of the lungs up to the top and then releasing the breath from the top down. While most conventional exercises find us breathing in the sympathetic nervous system, yoga reminds us to always breathe from the parasympathetic nervous system. Why is this important?

The sympathetic nervous system is represented by the "fight or flight" response. Think about how you would feel if you were camping in the woods and a bear came into camp. The sympathetic system uses energy, increasing blood pressure, the heart beats faster, and digestion slows down. The parasympathetic system is represented by the "rest and digest" response. Again, you are camping in the woods, and you grab a comfortable chair to watch nature or read a book. The parasympathetic system saves energy, decreasing blood pressure, slowing down the heart rate, and digestion can start.

Autonomic Nervous System
StructureSympathetic StimulationParasympathetic Stimulation
Iris (eye muscle)Pupil dilationPupil constriction
Salivary GlandsSaliva production reducedSaliva production increased
Oral/Nasal MucosaMucus production reducedMucus production increased
HeartHeart rate and force increasedHeart rate and force decreased
LungBronchial muscle relaxedBronchial muscle contracted
StomachPeristalsis reducedGastric juice secreted; motility increased
Small IntestineMotility reducedDigestion increased
Large IntestineMotility reducedSecretions and motility increased
LiverIncreased conversion of
glycogen to glucose
KidneyDecreased urine secretionIncreased urine secretion
Adrenal medullaNorepinephrine and
epinephrine secreted
BladderWall relaxed
Sphincter closed
Wall contracted
Sphincter relaxed

It should be noted that the autonomic nervous system is always working. It is NOT only active during "fight or flight" or "rest and digest" situations. Rather, the autonomic nervous system acts to maintain normal internal functions and works with the somatic nervous system.  

I found this great animation comparing the two systems. Go check it out. http://itc.gsw.edu/faculty/gfisk/anim/autonomicns.swf 


June 25, 2012

Hello and Namaste, Yogis!

We are finally settling into our summer yoga schedule. A couple of you have been away on vacation, so welcome back!! 

This week, I would like to share information on the type of yoga we practice at Jill Sand Consulting. We practice Hatha (ha-ta) Yoga. Hatha Yoga means "yoga for health," and it focuses on the physical aspect of our practice. It invigorates, renews, and heals the body, stretching and strengthening our muscles, joints and spine, while directing blood and oxygen to the internal organs. In our practice, we breathe, feel, and listen to our bodies. We let go of competition with, or judgment toward, ourselves or others. We let go of expectations that may keep us from fully experiencing the JOY of movement. We accept who we are, in this body, in this breath, in this moment.

In our regular practice, we include sun salutations and other series of movements, or vinyasas, to increase our heart rate into an aerobic state. We sustain isometric contractions required of the large and small muscle groups in our standing poses. Our balance poses require core stabilization, which improves our stability and strength throughout the trunk. We finish our regular practice with deep flexibility poses.

Over the next few weeks, I will be sharing information that compares yoga to other forms of exercise.


June 18, 2012

Hello All!

The longest day of the year is this Wednesday, and you are welcome to join me in celebrating the sun (we hope!) by moving through 108 sun salutations! Not to panic - we take our time moving through them, and we modify them as well. Afterward, we will celebrate with some fresh juice and light snacks. $20

108 Sun Salutations
Wednesday, June 20
6:30 - 8:30 PM
This event will be cancelled if it rains. It would be too hot to do 108 sun salutations indoors! 

Women's Circle - Laurie Wondra
Connecting with Our Angels and Guides From the Other Side
Monday, June 25
6:30 - 8:30 PM

Laurie is an extremely gifted channel with the energetic beings from the Other Side. They are wanting to communicate with us, to tell us that we are not alone and that they are with us always. All we need do is ask for their help!

Typically, we come to the session with a question to ask. That question helps those on the Other Side get down to business in the short time we are gathering. I am sure that Laurie will be bringing along her first book, if you are interested in buying it. I also have it linked to my Amazon account in Jill's Store: http://astore.amazon.com/jillsandcons-20/search?node=94&keywords=Laurie+Wondra&x=10&y=11&preview=  

Partner Yoga
Every Other Wednesday, Starts June 27
5 Weeks Series

Want to enhance your yoga practice this summer? This is the perfect opportunity! We will work with our familiar yoga poses but deepen our understanding of the poses by assisting another and being assisted to move each pose into a more perfect alignment. And then there are the 'fun" expressions of the poses, for those of us who want to take it to the next level! This class will have less of a "flow" with more attention paid to each individual pose. Join us for a fun way to experience yoga this summer! $60


WEATHER ALERT! If it is not raining, we will be outside. even if it has just stopped, or if it looks like it wants to rain. If it IS raining, we will bring the class indoors. If the class is too large, we will participate in a yoga nidra instead. Yoga nidra is form of relaxation and meditation that is truly a wonderful experience. You will still need you mat and possibly your blanket.


The new summer classes have started, but you are always welcome to sign up or even stop by for a drop-in class! Our 5 Tibetan Rites class is a huge hit! We are excited to begin a habit of practicing this anti-aging series this summer! Want more information? Just contact me.

Headwaters of the Mississippi, Lake Itasca


June 10, 2012

New Summer Outdoor Yoga Classes Start This Week!

Women's Circle Has Been Rescheduled!

Jill’s Summer Yoga Schedule











5 Tibetan Rites 8:30-9:15







DSF Men’s






DSF Noon









5 Tibetan Rites







Summer Solstice June 20 5:45-7:45/

Partner Yoga starts June 27





 Regular Summer Outdoor Yoga Classes

June 11 - August 23 

Morning Classes: Mondays and Tuesdays 8:15 – 9:30

Evening Classes: Tuesdays and Thursdays 6:15 – 7:30


1 class/week: 11 classes = $80

2 classes/week: 22 classes = $150

3 classes/week: 33 classes = $220

(lowest prices of the year!)

You can combine the 5 Tibetan Rites class with any of the regular classes to get a discounted rate.

No class on Thursday evening, June 14. The first Thursday evening yoga class begins on June 21, but Thursday night attendees can make up the class at any other class during the summer.


Women’s Circle – Laurie Wondra from Your Life CORE

RESCHEDULED to MONDAY, June 25  6:30-8:30PM

You have been asking about speaking with your angels again, so I have arranged to bring Laurie Wondra back this summer for a 2 hour session of connecting with our angels and guides and loved ones from the other side. Typically, we come to the session with a question to ask. That helps us to prepare so we get the most out of our own time with the other side.

I can’t say enough about the special gift that Laurie has in connecting with the higher energies. She provided very accurate information for me, about the men who broke into our home over a year ago, including the description of their car. She also helped us locate our dog, Spur, when he wandered off to die. Besides this, I have made wonderful connections with those who have passed from my family. And most importantly, I have received from my spiritual guides and angels assistance in my transition from school teacher to wellness consultant. What I do today was encouraged by them.

RSVP by Sunday, June 24th. $15 

(If you had registered previously, you will need to re-register. Thank you!) 

June 3, 2012


Women's Circle CANCELLED This Week!

I just heard from Laurie of Your Life CORE, and she needs to cancel the Circle this Wednesday. A family emergency has come up. It is our intention to reschedule as soon as Laurie is able to confirm a new date. I will let you know, ASAP.

If you have already paid for the Circle, let me know if you want to be reimbursed, or if you wish to keep the payment toward the next Circle with Laurie. I hope we can reschedule for some time this June, or perhaps the July Women's Circle.

Please keep Laurie and her family in your prayers.

Summer Schedule Starts June 11!

Just a reminder that the summer schedule starts NEXT week! If you haven't yet emailed me your intention to sign up, please do so as soon as possible. I am hoping to get more people signed up for the Partner Yoga, so if you are thinking about it, think harder! It will be so much fun! we have a lot of people trying out theFive Tibetan Rites classes. The more, the merrier!!

There will NOT be an evening class on the first Thursday, June 14th. ThereWILL be a class that morning. You are welcome to make up the Thursday evening class at any time during the summer.

Also, mark your calendars for 108 Sun Salutations on June 20th! 

Summer Solstice Event – 108 Sun Salutations and Celebration

Wednesday, June 20th from 6:30 – 8:30

Celebrate the Summer Solstice with 108 sun salutations! Join me on this first day of summer to perform the traditional 108 sun salutations. This ancient practice honors the change of the seasons and cleanses both the body and mind.

Drop in fee of just $20 includes light snacks afterward.


May 28, 2012


Namaste and I hope that you enjoyed a wonderful Memorial Day with family and friends whom we are Blessed to have in our lives today.

After completing our seven weeks of focused chakra work, including the sun salutations series that helped us balance each chakra individually, we bring our attention back to the regular sun salutations series. This series incorporates each of the chakras, and that is why it is traditionally used in most yoga practices.

For review, here is the sun salutations series.


1. Hands to heart mountain
Begin by standing in Mountain pose, feet about hip20width apart, hands either by your sides or in prayer position. Take several deep breaths.
2. High mountain
On your next inhale, in one sweeping movement, raise your arms up overhead and gently arch back as far as feels comfortable and safe.
3. Forward fold 
As you exhale, bend forward, bending the knees if necessary, and bring your hands to rest beside your feet.
4. Lunge
Inhale and step the right leg back
5. Plank
Exhale and step the left leg back into plank position. Hold the position and inhale.
6. Crocodile
Exhale and lower yourself as if coming down from a pushup. Only your hands and feet should touch the floor.
7. Upward Dog
Inhale and stretch forward and up, bending at the waist. Use your arms to lift your torso, but only bend back as far as feels comfortable and safe. Lift your legs up so that only the tops of your feet and your hands=2 0touch the floor. It's okay to keep your arms bent at the elbow.
8. Downward dog
Exhale, lift from the hips and push back and up.
9. Lunge
Inhale and step the right foot
10. Forward fold 
Exhale, bring the left foot forward and step into head-to-knee position.
11. High mountain 
Inhale and rise slowly while keeping arms extended .
12. Hands to heart mountain
Exhale, and in a slow, sweeping motion, lower your arms to the sides. End by bringing your hands up into prayer position. Repeat the sequence, stepping with the left leg.


  In our standing mountain pose, numbers 1, 2, 11 and 12, we are both rooted to the ground (Chakra 1) and reaching our crowns to the sky in meditation (Chakra 7). All other chakras are aligned between the two chakras as we take them into balance.

Our folded fold pose (numbers 3 and 10), focuses on Chakras 2 and 3, those affecting our digestion, immune system, and reproductive organs.

The lunges (numbers 4 and 9) continue to open the hips and strengthen our immunity with the focus on Chakra 2.

Plank and Crocodile poses (numbers 5 and 6) take the focus to Chakra 3 and we strengthen our will and self-confidence.

Cobra pose and Upward Facing Dog pose (number 7) are the heart opening poses of Chakra 4.

Downward Facing Dog pose (number 8) is the most common yoga pose, and it incorporates each of our chakras, from the grounding of the feet and hands(Chakra 1) to the lift of the hips (Chakra 2) to the strength of the abdominal muscles (Chakra 3) to the length of the spine (Chakras 1-5) and the opening of the heart (Chakra 4) and throat (Chakra 5). We consciously bring Chakras 6 and 7 into our practice through meditation and stillness in each pose.

If we are feeling out of balance, working through one or two of the sun salutations series is a great way to improve our body, mind and spirit.

You can view my sun salutation video by visiting my website here: http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/apps/videos/videos/show/10901759-half-series-and-sun-salutation

Summer Yoga and Other Events at Jill Sand Consulting!

Saturday Morning Yoga

June 2  8:30-10:00AM

If the weather permits, we will take this Saturday morning yoga class outdoors!  Drop-in fee of just $10 for the 90-minute class. Must register beforehand.


Women’s Circle – Laurie Wondra from Your Life CORE

Wednesday, June 6  6:30-8:30PM

You have been asking about speaking with your angels again, so I have arranged to bring Laurie Wondra back this summer for a 2 hour session of connecting with our angels and guides and loved ones from the other side. Typically, we come to the session with a question to ask. That helps us to prepare so we get the most out of our own time with the other side.

I can’t say enough about the special gift that Laurie has in connecting with the higher energies. She provided very accurate information for me, about the men who broke into our home over a year ago, including the description of their car. She also helped us locate our dog, Spur, when he wandered off to die. Besides this, I have made wonderful connections with those who have passed from my family. And most importantly, I have received from my spiritual guides and angels assistance in my transition from school teacher to wellness consultant. What I do today was encouraged by them.

RSVP by Monday, June 4th. $15


New Classes at JSC This Summer!

Partner Yoga

This will be a fun, new way to experience your yoga practice!

Partner Yoga is two or more people joining together to deepen the impact and experience of a yoga practice. The primary component that differentiates partner practice from individual practice is touch. We touch and are touched by others. We use traction and leverage, and the kinesthetic awareness that comes from touch, to open to greater depths in our bodies and our psyches.

Partner Yoga is not a substitute for individual practice. It is a practice that informs and strengthens our capacity in relationships, as well as our individual Yoga practice. Partner Yoga is a healing art that teaches the fundamental value of joining and sharing with others. It demonstrates how we become more authentic and empowered through our willingness to open and connect with the world around us. Partner Yoga can be practiced by any two or more willing participants- friends, acquaintances, siblings, parents and children. Previous Yoga experience is not even required. Excerpt modified from Elysabeth Williamson, developer of Principle-based Partner Yoga and the author of ʻThe Pleasures and Principles of Partner Yogaʼ. 

Classes are held every other Wednesday evening from June 27-Aug 22. 5 weeks of 2 hour classes. $60/each partner. You must sign up with a partner, or let me know if you are looking for a partner.


5 Tibetan Rites

The Rites are said to be a form of Tibetan yoga similar to the yoga series that originated in India. However, the Five Rites and traditional Tibetan yoga both emphasize "a continuous sequence of movement,” whereas Indian forms focus on "static positions".

The Five Tibetan Rites have become well-known as an anti-aging health and fitness routine. They were discovered in a remote Himalayan Monastery during the 1930’s but have been reportedly used for 2500 years. The five yoga movements help improve energy, increase mental clarity, and reduce stress. Once learned, a practitioner can move through the sequence in about ten minutes.

Classes are held Tuesday evenings from 5:30-6:15 or Thursday mornings from 8:30-9:15. 11 weeks for just $80. You can combine this class with others to get the discount rates for multiple sign-ups.


Summer Solstice Event – 108 Sun Salutations and Celebration

Wednesday, June 20th from 6:30 – 8:30

Celebrate the Summer Solstice with 108 sun salutations! Join me on this first day of summer to perform the traditional 108 sun salutations. This ancient practice honors the change of the seasons and cleanses both the body and mind.

Drop in fee of just $20 includes light snacks afterward.


Regular Summer Outdoor Yoga Classes

June 11 - August 23 

Morning Classes: Mondays and Tuesdays 8:15 – 9:30

Evening Classes: Tuesdays and Thursdays 6:15 – 7:30


1 class/week: 11 classes = $80

2 classes/week: 22 classes = $150

3 classes/week: 33 classes = $220

(lowest prices of the year!)

You can combine the 5 Tibetan Rites class with any of the regular classes to get a discounted rate.

No class on Thursday evening, June 14. The first Thursday evening yoga class begins on June 21, but Thursday night attendees can make up the class at any other class during the summer.


May 20, 2012


 The Seventh Chakra or Crown Chakra

The 7th chakra is located at the crown of the head and serves as the crown of the entire chakra system. It is referred to as the crown chakra. The element of the 7th chakra is thought/cosmic consciousness. The mind creates our belief systems that control our thoughts and actions. In balance, we are unprejudiced and have a great awareness of the world and ourselves. The function of the 7th chakra is connection with the infinite. In art, Christ is depicted with a halo around his head. This could represent the awakened spirituality of the 7th chakra.

The 7th chakra is connected to the muscles in our body, our central nervous system our bones, and our skin. Excessive energy in the 7th chakra appears as being overly intellectual. Deficient energy manifests as difficulty thinking for ourselves, apathy, spiritual skepticism and materialism. When the crown chakra is not balanced, we have a lack of ease. We may have physical issues such as energetic disorders/imbalances, chronic exhaustion that is not associated with a physical problem and sensitivity to light, sound, and other environmental factors. The emotional and mental strengths associated with the 7th chakra are the ability to trust life, values, ethics, and courage, contribution or contributing to humanity, ability to see the bigger picture, faith and inspiration, and spirituality and devotion. Emotional and mental issues resulting from an unbalanced 7th chakra can be a fear of abandonment at the spiritual level and a loss of our connection to people and life in general.

The crown chakra is what is impacted when we are at a crossroads in life. We have to let go of the previous path we were on.

In yoga, our meditation time is the time we connect with the crown chakra. 



May 13, 2012


Namaste Yogis and Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there!

We will no doubt be outdoors during the evening home studio regular classes. Morning classes, it is possible we might be outdoors. Please bring a blanket for under your mats, bug spray (haven’t noticed a need for it yet, but with all this rain lately, the mosquitoes might be ready to hatch), and a water bottle, as the sun gets hot out there!

This week we’ll focus on the brow chakra, often times referred to as the third eye chakra. Located between the brows, the brow chakra includes the pituitary gland. The pituitary gland acts as the main control center of our body because it sends messages to all other glands. In yoga, the brow chakra is known as the “seat of the Soul” and is associated with our Spiritual truth. The brow chakra represents our wisdom, our ability to put things into perspective. It is where we process fantasy from reality. It is our intuitive center. We work with the brow chakra when we have issues of the brain, neurological system, eyes, ears, nose, the pituitary or our pineal glands. Physical symptoms of imbalance are headaches, sinus issues, brain tumors, strokes, blindness, deafness, seizures, spinal dysfunctions, depression, panic, and learning disabilities. The emotional areas we work with are judgment, inability to see the bigger picture, confusion, poor memory, and indecision. Keeping the brow chakra in balance allows us to use our intuitive senses while also understanding reality from fantasy.

In yoga, we work with the brow chakra in our concentration and focus on the poses, especially our holding poses and our balance poses. Our standing balances, headstand, plow, and shoulder stand are great places to balance the brow chakra, with cobra and child’s offering places to rest. When we close our eyes in class, we are working with this chakra. Also, if we allow ourselves to meditate during our final relaxation, we invite the energy of the third eye.


This week, my friend, Barb, shared a very inspiring video of a former soldier/paratrooper who demonstrates dedication to the brow chakra in his yoga practice as he healed some very complex health issues suffered after returning home from the Middle East. Concentration, focus, balance, and never giving up is his message. Please watch this video. It is about five minutes long, but it will inspire you to challenge yourself and bring greater focus into your yoga practice.

Are you ready to transform yourself?




“Just because I can’t do it today doesn’t mean I’m not going to do it some day.”



May 6, 2012

Greetings Yogis!

This week we move up the energy systems to the fifth chakra, the Throat Chakra. It deals with how well we express ourselves. It is our power of will. Located at the neck near the spine, this energy is activated in the pit of the throat. Residing between the head and the heart, it reminds us that we must balance our words between these two. Speaking only from the brain, we gain power in our external world. Speaking from the heart, we gain power in our personal domain. When our minds lead, we tend to cut off our emotions. When our hearts lead, we tend to  live in the illusion that all is well. In balance, we realize that every choice we make, every feeling and thought we have, is an act of power that has personal, social, environmental, and global consequences. We learn to choose our words carefully.

When the throat chakra is out of balance, we have difficulty expressing ourselves, we feel fear, doubt, or uncertainty. Too much energy in this area results in our speaking too much. We need to hold our words in more often.

The fifth chakra involves our thyroid and parathyroid, jaw, neck, throat, tongue and larynx. Any issue we have with these organs and glands suggest we look at our communication. 

In yoga, we work with neck and shoulder stretches. Bridge pose, Camel pose, and Plow pose are great poses for balancing the throat chakra as well.

See you on the mat!



May 6, 2012

Namaste, my friends! 

I hope you and your home stayed dry and safe from the hail last night! What an interesting storm during that Super Moon. Whew! I found my outdoor table half way across the yard this morning...

May Women's Circle
Outdoor Labyrinth Meditation

Just a reminder that the Women's Circle for May is THIS Wednesday from 5:30 - 7:00PM at the Glendale Methodist Church Outdoor Labyrinth. We can carpool from my house, or you can meet us there. This is a potluck, so I will need your confirmation that you are attending by Monday night so I can organize who is bringing what... if you have a particular dish you'd like to bring, please do so!
Bring a blanket to sit on, utensils for eating, and a pen and journal for writing after your meditation. 


Tank Top Reorders!

The JOY tank tops have been a great hit for summer yoga and workouts! There are just two Small and two Medium tanks left. All who have bought them are thrilled with the quality of the material. If you are interested in my placing another order, please let me know. I plan to order more Larges and X-Larges, which work better for the more "endowed" among us! With a bigger order, I can keep the cost at $20.



Much JOY to each of you!



April 29, 2012


The Heart Chakra


This week, we move up the spine to find our fourth chakra, the Heart Chakra. The heart chakra is located in the center of the chest, just above the heart. This chakra represents our ability to live lovingly. It reflects our compassion, service, and vocation. It is the center of the seven chakras, the first chakra that addresses our spiritual selves.  The spiritual lessons to be learned in the heart are forgiveness, unconditional love, letting go, trust, and compassion. Heavy-heartedness and grief and pain can reside here.  Hurtful situations that affect our emotional being are divorce or separation, grief through death, emotional abuse, and abandonment. All of these are wounding to the heart chakra. Our physical body manifests symptoms of depletion or overabundance of heart energy in the upper back, arms, lungs, and heart. This includes our circulatory system, blood, rib cage, diaphragm, thymus, breasts, esophagus, shoulders, hands and physical dysfunctions like heart conditions, asthma, lung and breast cancers, pneumonia, upper back, and shoulder problems. 

Signs that the heart chakra is overabundant include co-dependency, possessiveness, jealousy, heart disease, and high blood pressure. For these symptoms, in yoga we practice forward folds because they are grounding and foster introspection. If you notice that you are sitting with your head forward, shoulders rounded and your chest collapsed, it’s a good time to start practicing fourth chakra poses to give your heart some breathing space. When we lead with our head and not with the heart, we may be overly focused on thought and tend to cut ourselves off from the emotions and the body.  People with stagnant  heart chakra energy  need to open to receive love more fully in our backbends and chest expansion poses.

Our yoga three-part breathing brings balance into the fourth chakra. We also work with the arm poses of Eagle and Cows Face.

The most powerful way to open, energize, and balance not just the heart chakra but all of our chakras is to love ourselves and others. Love is the greatest healer. Remembering what we love and appreciate as we practice our heart poses enhances the power of the poses and our general well-being.





April 22, 2012



Greetings and Happy Earth Day!!

I am so excited to share some updates with everyone on my mailing list! Many new things are going on at Jill Sand Consulting, and there are new events yet to come!


JOY Tank Tops

In Jill’s Store (at right), we have Joy! tank tops for sale, priced at just $20 each! These tanks have gone fast, so I just have a few left, sizes Small and Medium. I fit into a Small, but I am wearing a Medium because I like the length on that size better. We’ve found that the breast-size of the tanks are smaller, so if you normally wear a Small, you might be more comfortable in a Medium.


Shakopee Derby Days

I am very pleased to announce that I have been approved to teach a yoga class as part of the Shakopee Derby Days! I will be offering a FREE yoga class at 7:30-8:30AM on Saturday, August 4th, downtown Shakopee near the amphitheater. Having grown up in Shakopee, I have been looking for a way to be part of the Derby Days celebrations. I hope you can join me, and please pass this on to your friends! Men and women welcome!


May Saturday Yoga Class

Our once a month Saturday yoga class continues to be very popular. The next class is scheduled for Saturday, May 5 from 8:30-10:00AM. This 90 minute class is a drop-in class and costs just $10. I hope you can join us on the mat this month!


May Women’s Circle – Outdoor Labyrinth Meditation

This weekend, I checked out a local outdoor labyrinth. It is located in Savage at the Glendale Methodist Church. http://www.glendalechurchumc.org/  

I will be contacting them about bringing a group over to use the labyrinth as a meditation tool for our Circle on Wednesday, May 9th (SECOND Wednesday of the month) from 5:30-7:00. We’ll have a pot luck dinner, so each person attending will bring a food to share and their own utensils and beverage to drink. Sign up starts today.  Bring a blanket and maybe a pillow to sit on. Also, bring a journal and pen for recording any inspiration that might come to you while meditating.


Summer Series

It seems odd to be talking about our summer yoga, but it is just around the bend! I have a couple really fun NEW classes to introduce this summer! Partner yoga will be offered on Wednesday evenings every other week this summer. For this class, you will sign up with a partner who will work with you through each pose. All yogi levels can attend this class! I am also adding a 5 Tibetan Rites class in the morning and evening this summer. I just got turned onto this class, and I will continue to research it. It is an anti-aging ritual that was demonstrated on Dr. Oz this week (thanks Tracy for the heads up!). It wakes up and balances all the chakras, while keeping us YOUNG! 




More information about the summer schedule will be coming out mid-May, but that is your sneak peek into what we have in store this summer!


Wishing you JOY in your Heart!



April 22, 2012


Hello and Namaste!

This week’s yoga focus is on the third chakra, the solar plexus. The color associated with the solar plexus is yellow. Like the first chakra, which grounds us to the Earth, and the second chakra, which deals with our relationships with others, the third chakra is also part of the “Earth element.” The solar plexus lies just below the rib cage. When we breathe our three-part yoga breath, we talk about taking our breath from the belly up to the lower rib cage. That is the approximate area of the third chakra.

Physically, the third chakra involves the digestive system, mainly the small intestine, as well as the pancreas. Emotionally, this is the area where our self-esteem and our personal power reside.  Our ego is based out of the third chakra. Feelings of anger and fear are stored here, which is why so many people experience “stomach aches” while in fear or holding onto anger. Positively, our confidence and feelings of self-worth, our ambition and drive, stem from this part of the chakra system.

In our yoga practice, we spend some time each week working with the third chakra, as well as all chakras. If we have too much energy in our third chakra, passive backbends are calming for us. When we are deficient in our energy here, with digestive problems, eating disorders, low self-esteem, etc., boat pose, the warrior poses, twists, and the sun salutation series can help balance that energy.





April 15, 2012



In this week’s yoga classes, we continue our focus on the chakras, moving up to the second chakra, also known as the Sacral Chakra. The color associated with it is orange.  It is located in the space below the belly button and above the pubic bone. This chakra is known for being the source of our sensuality, adaptability, and flexibility. It is associated with the hypo-gastric nerve plexus as well as the adrenal glands and kidneys, both playing a role in balancing and cleansing the energy of the body.


The energy created here is similar to the forces of nature we associate with water and the phenomenon of chemical bonding. It is the energy of attraction, that which creates associations between the molecules of our being, between people, even between orbiting celestial bodies. http://laura-susan-henry.suite101.com/the-second-chakra-swadhistana-a60766


If the sacral chakra energy is off balance, we may experience issues like lower back pain, sciatica, pelvic pain, urinary troubles. This chakra is also associated with feelings of blame and guilt, money problems, and relationship issues.


In yoga, lunges, forward folds, backbends, and squatting poses help us to keep the energy around the hips flowing.



 Have a wonderful week!

April  7, 2012


Hello Yogis!

We shift our attention this week to our yoga practice and our chakra energy. Some basic information about chakras: The concept of chakra originates in Hindu texts as part of the yoga traditions. The chakras are believed to be a number of wheel-like vortices which exist in the surface of our bodies. The chakras are said to be whorls of energy permeating, from a point on the physical body in an ever-increasing fan-shaped formation. 

It is typical for chakras to be depicted as either flower-like or wheel-like. In the former case, "petals" are shown around the perimeter of a circle. In the latter, spokes divide the circle into segments making the chakra resemble a wheel (or "chakra"). Each chakra possesses a specific number of segments or petals.

While the origins of chakra discussion is based on the religion of Hinduism, it is not exclusively religious, as we also know about yoga. When I discuss chakra energy with others, I compare it to the energy we feel when someone is standing behind us: we did not hear them but we can feel their energy. Another example is when we are in a conversation with another person, we have our personal space around us. If the other person comes into our space, we back away from them. That is because their energy permeates into our energy.

In yoga, we work with chakra energy to create balance in our lives. Each of the chakras represent different aspects of our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being. Keeping the chakras in balance is our way to help heal any imbalances we have in our lives. A typical yoga practice works with the seven main chakras of energy. From our first breathing exercises when we ground ourselves to our mats, to the final relaxation of Savasana, when we allow our bodies to relax while perhaps reflecting on our practice or lives, we incorporate balance through our energy bodies of the chakras.

In this week's class, we are focusing on the first chakra's energy, the root chakra. The root chakra is represented by the four-petaled lotus flower. The root chakra is the most physical one, dealing with our grounding ourselves to the physical world. In our exhale breath, we work with engaging our belly button to spine while lifting the pelvic floor. That is the area where we find the root chakra. The root chakra reminds us to stay grounded and to connect with nature. It governs our survival, security, passion, money, job, and home. It aids our everyday survival. 

New Additions to Jill Sand Consulting!!
(No, it's not a puppy!)

I am pleased to share with you TWO bits of news this week! First of all, I am thrilled to be invited to teach a yoga class during the Shakopee Derby Days this summer! Mark your calendars: I will be teaching a FREE yoga class on Saturday, August 4th, in the AM but the time is yet to be determined. I am so excited to offer this class, and I hope you can join me as I bring yoga to the greater public! More information to follow, but sketch the date and event in your calendar now. 

The second bit of news I have to share with you is that I recently invested in some Jill Sand Consulting merchandise, just in time for our warmer weather! I am now selling burnout tank tops! Flattering for all body types, the racer back tee is a must-have for all yoginis. Great worn alone or with a shirt underneath it. I am selling them for just over my cost, at just $20 a piece! The order supply is limited, so please let me know if you wish to buy one. I can bring it to class. Sizes from Small to X-Large. For sizing information,  I can fit into both a Small and a Medium, but the Medium is a little longer with a little more room for breathing. LOL

I hope that, as you shop for some fresh new clothing apparel this spring, you consider the new tops at JSC. As most of you know, this year I have been focusing on bringing JOY into our classes, and so the tank is perfect for that focus.

Burnout Tanks available at JSC for $20
Sizes S to XL

As always, I wish you JOY in your week, and Happy Easter to you!




March 24, 2012


I am all  packed and ready for Jamaica. Wish YOU were coming too! Maybe another time, right? :-) Before I leave, I just want to remind you that the new classes start at the home studio on Tuesday, April 3. Middle School, your new classes start on Monday, April 2. (Yes, I am teaching ALL my Monday, April 2 classes!!) 

Although my Tuesday-Thursday REGULAR classes are full, I do have an opening in the Advanced Yoga class on Tuesdays from 7:15-8:30! It is a GREAT addition to your yoga routine, and we work hard and have FUN the entire class! If you are ready to challenge yourselves this spring, join us for a fun-filled experience. 

I DO have openings in my morning classes! My Tuesday morning 8:15-9:15 class has a couple of openings, and my Thursday 8:15-9:15 classes are wide open! If those times work for you, please join us! It's a great way to start our day.

Spring 2012 Schedule
10 weeks
April 2 - June 8

Home Studio Rates
10 weeks - one class a week = $85
10 weeks - two classes a week = $160

One of our Eden Prairie yoginis is selling some yoga mat bags. If you are interested, she has two left. The cost is just $15.
yoga bags Julie.jpg

And don't forget, we also have yoga bags available! If you need more than a bag to hold your mat, please look at our lovely yoga bags priced at just $75! Made by Mary.


Finally, here is a great article a yogini friend shared with me on Facebook. Let's all feel beautiful with our yoga practice!

How Yoga Makes You Pretty

This post is an excerpt from Melanie Klein’s chapter, “How Yoga Makes You Pretty: The Beauty Myth, Yoga and Me”  in the forthcoming anthology,  21st Century Yoga: Culture,Politics and Practice, available May 1, 2012 (pre-order here). An earlier version of this post was originally published at Elephant Journal in two parts.
We’ve been told that “pretty” is the magical elixir for everything that ails us. If we’re pretty, we’re bound to be happier than people who aren’t pretty. If we’re pretty, we’ll never be lonely; we’ll have more Facebook friend requests; we’ll go on more dates; we’ll find true love (or just get laid more often); we’ll be popular. If we’re pretty, we’ll be successful; we’ll get a better job; we’ll get rewarded with countless promotions; our paychecks will be bigger. Cultural and personal rewards for being pretty are a form of cultural currency, as Naomi Wolf elucidates in the feminist classic, The Beauty Myth.  In short, “pretty” will buy us love, power and influence. It will solve all our problems. “Pretty” will ultimately make us feel good.
And who doesn’t want to feel good?
While this emphasis on physical perfection is a goal presented to us from a variety of sources, the pursuit of pretty is most often given precedence via the mainstream media. The media juggernaut that actively shapes our 21st century cultural environment sells us this promise and perpetuates this myth beginning in early childhood. Even the toys I played with as a girl have become sexified, slimmer and more heavily made up. The princess brigade continues to spotlight beauty and the pursuit of Prince Charming. And, let’s face it, you nab your prince with your spellbinding beauty. I mean, really, have you ever seen an ugly princess, especially one that lands the guy? I didn’t think so. And think about poor Snow White. Beauty took such a priority that the Queen hired a hit man to take the fairest in the land out.
The continuous assault continues as we move through adolescence and adulthood. It meets our gaze at every turn through fashion, television, film, music, and advertising. These images and messages are practically inescapable, even in yoga publications these days. They peddle products that actively sculpt our desire and entice us using sleek, sculpted models and celebrities in computer retouched photos.  The advertising industry, the foundation of the mass media, is specifically designed to appeal to our emotions and shape our expectations, thereby constructing cultural values. Advertising constructs enviable identities and lifestyles in order to sell a gamut of products and services from beer, luxury cars and designer shoes to yoga mats, DVDs and diet pills. And there are billions of dollars in profit when we succumb. Ultimately, we’re spoon-fed repetitive streams of unrealistic images in a virtual onslaught that tells girls and women, and increasingly boys and men, that the most valuable thing we can aspire to be is, well, pretty.
And the tantalizing promises of a better, prettier, you are absolutely everywhere. The idea that we can simply “turn off” or “ignore” these messages is narrow in scope and short sighted. Unless you’re living under a rock – wait, make that in a hermetically sealed bubble – you are affected in one way or another. And so are those around you.
Like many girls and women, I had waged a war on my body most of my life. In 1997, I had  the great fortune of landing in the company of an eclectic group of yogis led by the sometimes delightfully inappropriate and absolutely authentic Bryan Kest. Not only did Bryan become my yoga teacher, he also became my one of my first body image teachers. His teaching fused physical postures, breath and meditation with a focus on media literacy and body image awareness. Whether he knew it or used those exact terms didn’t matter. His rough edges held pearls of wisdom for me—wisdom that helped me heal my self-hatred and body abuse. He asked us to consider the health of our toes and spine, things that are not given any attention in the mainstream beauty aesthetic or fitness industry. Things I had never considered before.
According to Kest, “Everybody wants to be pretty because that’s what they’ve been told will make them feel good, even though there’s no proof that people who are prettier are healthier and happier. So why don’t we just cut to the chase and go straight to what makes us feel good?” Bryan urged us to stop comparing and competing with one another . . .  and ourselves. He commanded us to be with the reality of that moment and detach from the artificial images in our minds. And in doing so, he challenges us to confront the demands of our egos.
And that is the practice of yoga-the state of mind you cultivate as you move through your life’s experience. It is a practice devoted to uniting mind, body and spirit—creating unity, balance and peace. As Georg Feuerstein points out, yoga was classified as a “spiritual endeavor” utilized to cease the fluctuations of the mind and senses as early as the second millennium BC. This stands in stark contrast to our Greco-Roman tradition, which values the power of the intellect over the inherent wisdom of the body – thereby creating a duality referred to as the mind-body split.
Yoga is a pathway to cultivate self-love, allowing us to shift our sense of validation inward, as opposed to the standard practice of measuring one’s worth based on external definitions. We’re able to begin defining ourselves from the inside out, rather than the outside in. In fact, the cultural validation we’re encouraged to seek often fans the flames of further discontent since we can never be thin enough, muscular enough, wealthy enough or pretty enough by mainstream standards. Even if we are a waify size-zero, a bulked up mass of muscles, a millionaire or a picture-perfect model, happiness isn’t a guarantee. There are plenty of depressed, disgruntled, unsatisfied “pretty people” with low self-esteem.
“Pretty” doesn’t necessarily signal a healthy body, mentally or physically. In fact, in my own work as a body image activist, many of the most “beautiful” women I’ve met have had some of the most dysfunctional and unhealthy relationships with their bodies. Too often, this has been marked by eating disorders, disordered eating and dangerous beauty rituals to maintain the outward facade. In the end, there isn’t a direct correlation between being pretty and being happy or healthy. The prizes “pretty” entices us with can’t be enjoyed without a deeper connection, a feeling of wellness, wholeness and/or self-love. Pretty hasn’t delivered and what has been defined as pretty isn’t real or sustainable.
Remember, Naomi Wolf called it the “beauty myth” for a reason.
What’s your intention? To look pretty or feel beautiful?


March 19, 2012

Hi Yogis!

I am back from our whirlwind tour of Vegas and preparing for our Yoga Retreat in Jamaica! It's 83 degrees and sunny in Jamaica - you should join us next week!!  http://tropicalescapes.biz/escapes/2012_Jill_Sand_JA.html 

At the home studio, we are finishing up our last week of classes for the winter session. It's hard to believe that 12 weeks have already passed in 2012. As always, I am feeling Blessed as you continue to join me on the mat.

NEW CLASSES at the Home Studio and at Eden Prairie begin the week of April 2nd, There will be NO classes (in Minnesota) next week. ALL classes resume on Monday, April 2nd. Back on schedule until the summer!

A few of my yogini friends sent me this lovely video. It is a 92 year old woman who has been teaching yoga for 50 years! This is my goal. :) I hope you'll be joining me on the mat for the next 50 years!

See you on the mat!



March 11, 2012

Hello Yogis!

Just a few notes this week, followed by a yoga tip!


Last Mamas-To-Be Class is this Wednesday. We have two mama's who are close to having those babies, so Hayley and Christine, it might just be you two!

There is NO Friday morning class THIS week. We will meet for our LAST Friday morning class on the 23rd.

Middle School, this is your last class before break. A NEW SESSION starts Monday, April 2nd.

Eden Prairie, next week is your last week, except for the Monday class, which finishes this session on April 2nd. There is no Monday, March 19 class for you.

There is no Saturday yoga the first Saturday of April. It is the day before Easter, and with me just coming back, I need to adjust back into my routine. I will try to schedule out the following week or so. More info to follow.

The same holds true for the April Women's Circle.

Home Studio attendees, if you have NOT told me your intentions for this next session, please do so THIS WEEK! I will need to open the classes up to the public, if you cannot attend the next session. Thank you!

Sacroiliac Joint Pain

As most of you know, a couple weeks ago I injured my sacroiliac joint after a very deep massage. I was about 90% healed when I was vacuuming last Wednesday and threw it out even worse than before. Four chiropractic visits and one acupuncture visit later, I am still nursing the injury, but I am healing. 

I came across this article to remind myself of how to ease myself back into my yoga practice this week. Whenever you have an injury, please let me know (preferably BEFORE class, so I can prepare modifications for you during class). We can't always prevent injuries, but we can make sure they heal properly.

Until we meet on the mat!
Jill :)

By Roger Cole 
Sacroiliac Joint
The Road to Injury
Suppose you're one of those people who finds that yoga comes easily to you. You can bend into most poses without stress or strain. One day, while coming out of Janu Sirsasana, you notice that something feels a little off down where your lower back joins your pelvis. From that day on, you frequently have a nagging ache in that area. It's usually more annoying than disabling, and periodically it goes away altogether, only to mysteriously reappear days or even weeks later. These are some of the symptoms of an unstable sacroiliac joint alternately moving out of alignment and back in again.

The sacrum is the bone that is shaped like an upside-down triangle at the base of the spine. On each side of the sacrum, a roughened surface makes contact with the corresponding surface of the left and right ilium bones, or the "wings" of the pelvis. These are the left and right sacroiliac (SI) joints. Strong ligaments hold the SI joints together to prevent the sacrum from tipping forward between the ilium bones. To get an idea of where your SI joints are, trace your thumb over the top rim of your pelvis on one side, moving backward until you find the rearmost bony prominence of the ilium (this is called the posterior superior iliac spine or PSIS). If it were possible to press your thumb forward an inch or two, deep into your body, you would be touching one of your SI joints.

Yoga students frequently develop a specific pain pattern that's characterized by a dull ache over an area about the size of a quarter and is centered on the PSIS on one side of the body only. Sitting, forward bending, and twisting movements often make it worse, and back and sidebending can also be painful. Although not all experts agree and other injuries must be ruled out, many yoga teachers and health professionals believe that this pain pattern is caused by the misalignment of one of the sacroiliac joints.

According to one theory, yoga practice (especially if it emphasizes forward bends, twists, and poses that stretch the inner thighs) can loosen the supporting ligaments of the SI joints over time, until one side of the upper sacrum slips forward relative to the ilium on that side. Because the two irregular surfaces no longer sit properly on one another, pressing them together tightly (as occurs strongly while sitting) causes pain.
Prevent and Prepare
To prevent this problem from happening, be mindful of your alignment in different types of poses. In forward bends, be careful to move your sacrum and ilium forward as a unit. For example, in Janu Sirsasana, move into the pose by tilting the iliac crest (pelvic rim) of the bent leg forward toward the foot of the straight leg. This makes the ilium push the sacrum along so that the two bones move as one. When your ilium stops moving, don't tilt your sacrum any deeper into the pose. Likewise, in twists, experiment with letting the pelvis turn along with the spine instead of keeping it fixed, so the sacrum and ilium move as a unit.

In forward bends, twists, and any pose that stretches your inner thighs, try contracting the pelvic-floor muscles. These muscles help hold the sacrum in place by pulling the sitting bones toward one another, thereby squeezing the ilium bones inward against the sacrum. Finally, strengthening muscles of the back with poses such as Salabhasana, and strengthening the deepest abdominal muscle (transversus abdominis) with pranayama practices such asKapalabhati (Skull Shining Breath), help stabilize the SI joints.
The Path to Healing
If you already have a sacroiliac misalignment, the key is to adjust the joint back into its proper position and keep it there. Some health professionals know how to manually manipulate the SI joint back into place, but it often pops back out soon afterward. Therefore, it's helpful to learn how to reset your own SI joint using asana techniques, but it's best to learn these techniques from a qualified instructor.

The golden rule for SI-adjusting postures is that a correct pose should immediately feel good on the injured area while you practice it. Enter each pose slowly, and if it causes any discomfort near the PSIS, come out of it right away. Not all poses work for all people, but you need only a single one that works for you. Two examples of poses that help some people are the Salabhasana andVirabhadrasana I (Warrior Pose I) variations shown here. Either side of the Virabhadrasana I variation may be helpful.

Once you have learned to put your SI joint back into place, make sure it is properly located before each yoga practice and follow the preventive steps above to keep it there. At the end of practice, use your technique again, if needed, to firmly reset the joint. Some teachers find that taking special care to keep the SI joint in place at all times over a period of months or even years can make it more stable.
Salabhasana (Locust Pose), modification
This pose may help stabilize the sacroiliac joints. Strap your ankles 8 to 12 inches apart. Lie on your belly with your arms alongside your body, palms facing up. As you inhale, lift your arms, legs, and chest up. Pulling the legs strongly outward against the strap may relieve sacroiliac symptoms; it contracts outer hip muscles (gluteus medius and minimus) that pull the ilium bones apart, temporarily creating a gap between the sacrum and ilium to give the sacrum the freedom to move back into place. Introduce this pose gradually and back off immediately if it causes discomfort.
Virabhadrasana I (warrior pose I), variation
This pose may relieve sacroiliac symptoms by putting asymmetrical forces on the joint. Move into it slowly to make sure it feels OK; avoid it if it hurts. Take a wide stride, bend your front knee, and place a block between your knee and the wall. Keep your front shin vertical, back knee straight, back heel lifted, and chest lifted. Shift your body weight and adjust the angle of your pelvis to find the position that feels best in your sacroiliac area.
Roger Cole, PhD, has practiced yoga since 1975 and taught since 1980. He is a certified Iyengar Yoga teacher trained at the Iyengar Yoga Institutes in San Francisco and Pune, India. He teaches at Yoga Del Mar in Del Mar, California. For more information, visithttp://www.rogercoleyoga.com.


March 4, 2012

Shanti, Yogis!

In our yoga practice the past few weeks, especially in the home practice, we have been using blocks, belts and pillows for propping our poses to get better alignment and find the greatest range of expression of certain poses that might be uncomfortable or even intimidating for us. This week, I came across a great article at yogajournal.com on using props in a yoga class. I'm sharing it with you today.

There is still room to sign up for the Women's Circle THIS Wednesday evening at 6:30 - 8:00. Please let me know by Monday night. Thank you!

Also note, below the article is information on the home yoga studio 
spring session classes. Please read if you are attending or are considering attending those classes.



Are props a helpful supplement to your practice, or do they just get in the way? Here's how to decide when to use—and not use—these tools.

By Claudia Cummins

The original yogis didn't practice with foam blocks, D-ring straps, or purple sticky mats. But as yoga evolved, many practitioners discovered that props could help deepen their explorations.

Among modern yogis, attitudes toward props range from the Zen-like minimalism of those who shun all but a sticky mat to the abundance of those who travel with an extra suitcase filled with yoga accessories. Regardless of where you fall in this spectrum, a few guidelines can help you make the most of your props.

Be clear about why you're using them. Mindlessly using a block to support your hand in a standing pose just because your teacher told you to won't deepen your practice. Ask yourself what purpose the extra support is serving and let that answer guide the way you use it. Are you using the block to move into a posture you aren't yet supple enough to manage on your own? If so, consider ways to lessen your reliance on that aid over time.

Be your own teacher. Use your body's signals to devise new and effective ways of using props to enhance your practice. When you sense a certain part of your body crying out for extra support in a resting pose, for example, wedge a towel or shirt beneath that area and observe what happens. Or if you're struggling to master a new pose, ask yourself whether any props within arm's reach might help. You might be surprised by the ingenious solutions you unearth.

Explore new territory. If a rolled-up blanket is supporting your back during a restorative pose, you might like to explore how varying the size and position of it alters your experience. Or if you're using a strap to help you understand a particular action or direction in a posture you know well, you may choose to repeat that same pose without props from time to time to explore the differences.

Be creative. Yoga basics include mats, blankets, straps, and blocks. But if you consider a prop to be any aid that helps you access a posture more fully, your world will widen considerably. Walls, tables, balls, books, socks, neckties, even the helping hands of a friend can all be used to deepen your exploration.

Practice nonattachment. Ideally, yoga leads us toward greater flexibility and adaptability. So don't grow so attached to your chest of yoga toys that you can't practice without them. If you use props regularly, challenge yourself every once in a while to stow them away and practice without any aids at all (that's right, not even a sticky mat). On the other hand, if you're a yoga minimalist, incorporate a few props into your practice every now and then just to explore how they might be helpful. You might be surprised by what you learn. Remember, the best yoga prop is always an open mind.

Claudia Cummins teaches yoga in Mansfield, Ohio. At the moment, her favorite pose is Parivrtta Janu Sirsasana (Revolved Head-to-Knee Pose).

Spring Yoga Classes in the Home Studio!

You get the first shot at the classes being offered in my home studio. Please respond back to the email telling me if you:

1. will be returning and attending the same classes

2. will be returning but wish to attend different classes

3. will not be returning for the spring session

Spring Yoga Session


April 2 – June 8

10 weeks

All classes will be held at the same days and times as the winter session EXCEPT we will be dropping the Friday 1:30 - 2:30 yoga classes. A third morning class will be picked up in the summer outdoor yoga session

1 class/ 10 weeks = $85

2 classes/ 10 weeks = $160



February 26, 2012

Making Our Yoga Practice Personal!


Hello Yogis!!


On Friday, I was reminded how we must make our yoga practice personal, as we are always reminded to listen to our bodies and do what is right for us at the moment we come to our mats. After a wonderfully enjoyable massage on Thursday afternoon, my muscles were so loose on Friday that when I moved into a pose that has never been an issue for me, I pulled a lower back muscle. Since then, I have been healing the low back muscles through acupuncture and Chinese herbal pads placed on the back. I am recovering, but I will be paying attention to my own needs on the mat this week, as I guide you through your own practice. It is always humbling to take a step, or two, backwards, but that is the only way we can move forward as our bodies heal.

Saturday Morning Yoga!
Our monthly Saturday yoga class is this weekend, March 3, from 8:30 - 10:00 AM. I hope you can join us on the mat! RSVP by Thursday. Drop in fee of $10. 

Jamaican Retreat
The retreat is just FOUR weeks away!! I am so excited for our trip, and I know that those who are attending are also excited! As I continue to plan the yoga classes and meditation, I feel the anticipation build!

If you, or someone you know, are still considering the trip, please let me know. I can send out the itinerary for you to review. It promises to be a fun-in-the-sun spa vacation with yoga and meditation to begin and end our day!!

New Classes
The Eagle Creek Elementary School classes are revving up this week! I look forward to spending time on the mat with you ladies once more! See you at 4:20 on Monday!

Mamas to Be Yoga Classes
Our last class will be this Wednesday! We have had one delivery, one birth expected any time now, and another close down the road. For those of you with more time to go in the pregnancy, please feel free to attend any of the other classes at the home studio. Drop in is just $10. I will offer you the appropriate modifications. We currently have a waiting list for the evening classes, but there is always room for new yoginis in the morning classes and the Friday afternoon class.

Friday Afternoon Classes
I am thinking about cancelling the Friday afternoon 1:30-2:30 class after this session is completed (April). It will just be for the spring session. If you are interested in attending this class, please let me know. If I have a couple more people interested in attending, I will keep it.

Wishing you JOY in your week!


February 19, 2012


Those of us who practice yoga during the week have been working toward our yoga goals of finding one pose we would like to move more freely into by the end of 2012. A friend (thanks Patty!) shared this video with me this week, and I think THIS is what yoga is all about. It's not that we can do the pretzelly poses (but how fun it is to play with those pose preps!), but rather, it is the result of having strength, flexibility, and balance from this point forward in our lives.

Meet 95 year old Maia. May we all be Maia when we are 95! 



Upcoming Events

Class Availability
With five more weeks left of this winter session, I am accepting new clients into my home studio morning yoga classes! I have availability in the Tuesday 8:15-9:15 AM class, Thursday 8:15-9:15 AM class, and also Friday afternoon 1:30-2:30 PM class. Please let me know if you are interested! My evening classes are currently full with a waiting list. I can add you to my waiting list if you are interested. That means, when a person is unavailable to attend for the evening, you will be notified and the first person to respond will be able to substitute. Drop in fee is $10. This summer, when we take our practice outdoors, there will be no waiting lists! Yay!!!

New classes begin at Eagle Creek on Monday, February 27 at 4:20! They have invited others to attend, so if you are interested in attending this session, please let me know.

March 7 Women's Circle


A New Paradigm for Your Personal  

Wellness & Art of Self-Care

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


6:30 - 8:00 PM

$20 includes handouts and light snacks.

RSVP required by Sunday, March 4th!

Our presenter is Marit Solheim Witt. Marit will provide an introduction to the language of color-energy and the transformational power of the four core elements: air, water, fire and earth. Those attending are asked to fill out the attached survey before the session. These will be discussed during the circle. Marit will conclude the circle by leading us on a guided imagery journey, so dress comfortably!

Marit is a writer, coach, and creative director who has developed  the Alpha Element Matrix™ - a creative method of teaching about energy as a visual language.  She is an instructor at the Center for Integrative Health at Normandale Community College in Bloomington, Minnesota, works with clients and organizations as a coach in the area of personal expression and style, and teaches workshops about color, energy and creativity to inspire team synergy as well as personal leadership and growth.  Born in Norway and raised in Belgium and Germany, Marit moved to the United States in 1983 and holds degrees from the University of Minnesota in American Studies and Studio Arts.  She focuses her work and research on creativity and the mind-body connection while completing the Masters Program for Holistic Health at St. Catherine University.  Marit is also a volunteer provider at Well Within, a holistic wellness center in Woodbury, Minnesota, where she shares her love of colors and creativity with people struggling with chronic illness. Her website is found at http://alpha-element.com/ABOUT.html .


Jamaican Yoga and Meditation Spa Retreat
In five more weeks, a group of women from here and from around the country will be meeting in Jamaica for a wonderful yoga and meditation retreat! Our schedule will follow a similar plan each day:

-Morning yoga and meditation
-Healthy breakfast
-Circle/ Workshop/ Free time
-Healthy lunch
-Beach excursion
-Shared healthy evening dinner
-Late yoga and meditation (about two hours after dinner) 

Insert massages and other fun events into the week, and you have the makings for the most relaxed, balanced vacation of a lifetime! You will actually come back FEELING like you were on vacation! It's not too late to join us. Airfares have dropped $100 in the past week. The weekly rate at Bromley starts at $995 all inclusive. This is a really great deal, when you include all the special packages included.

For more information and to sign up, please go to: http://tropicalescapes.biz/escapes/2012_Jill_Sand_JA.html


February 12, 2012

It's Valentine's Day - Love Your Life!!


We all get caught up in the excitement of Valentine's Day. Will you go out for dinner? Will you get flowers from your sweetheart? Do you buy candy for your loved ones? Television reminds us that Valentine's Day is around the corner. Our home page for email offers us the reminder as well. We can't avoid the sentiments of the day.


But in yoga, we are reminded to be loving every time we come to the mat. We practice lifting and opening our Hearts with every breath, with every pose alignment. We remind ourselves to love ourselves, to love us: at this moment, in this pose, just this.


I read a great article on How to Fall in Love - Yogi Style. Author Katie Silcox shares four tips on getting more yogi love. I have paraphrased her list here.


1. The power of loving what already is. Stop what we are doing right now and appreciate what we see, hear, feel, smell, touch, taste in this moment. Do this throughout our day and week. Ask ourself, "What is it about this moment that I absolutely love and that is worthy of my attention?"


2. The power of loving touch. Yoga reminds us to soften our Hearts to be touched by life events. Physically, touching increases our natural oxytocin levels and reduces stress hormones. Gentle massages, warm hugs, or intimate touches from a loved one are ways we receive loving touches. We can offer loving touches to others in our circle of family and friends.


3. The power of loving selflessly. "Love without ownership." We can love more fully and authentically when we love someone without trying to own them or change them. We can practice random acts of kindness in our daily life, expecting nothing in return.


4. The power of loving remembrance. In quiet meditation, we can invoke a loving memory from our past, be in it, and recall the feelings of love it provided for us. We can hold this feeling in our Heart as we release the memory but let the feeling linger in our body.


Happy Valentine's Day to all of you! I look forward to our time on the mat this next week!




February 5, 2012

Is It February, Or What?!


Hello Yogis!


Yes, it is indeed February, and many of us are feeling the winter doldrums. Even with such a mild winter, mostly sunny, we get into a rut around this time of year. It is our biological clocks and not the weather outdoors so much, that influence these doldrums. Ask any of your friends who live in the sunshine states. They will tell you the same thing.


And then we top off the February doldrums with our extra few pounds gained over the holidays that haven't wanted to go away yet, and it can cause even more concern for us. And so we look to our yoga practice to provide even more inspiration for not only our emotional and mental needs, but also the physical needs of shedding a few extra pounds. I'm there with you, and I am here to help. LOL


Breathing is one of the best ways to work with our abdominal muscles, and so expect some time to go toward that, this week. I have also included some abdominal work in the classes for this week.


While we can work with our physical, mental, emotional, and sometimes spiritual needs during our yoga class to help us through the February slumps, there is more we can do to BE during this time of year.


Light a Candle

Make this winter time more special by adding candles at dinner, or while you are sitting quietly or even while watching TV. Take a minute from time to time to stare into the flame and let your gaze soften. Relax the body and mind as you become one with the flame.


Practice Thanksgiving

Give thanks when you wake up. Give thanks when you eat a meal. Give thanks when you go to bed. Be grateful for what you have been given in life. 


Bless the Children

Send a Blessing to your own kids, or to the kids you come in contact with. What do you wish most for them? Self-knowledge? Courage? Safety? Joy? If they are around you, let them hear your Blessing.


Invite a Sacred Pause

Chose a common act you do each day: touching a doorknob, turning on the faucet, or hearing the phone ring. Throughout the day, when this occurs, stop and take three silent, mindful breaths. Then go on.


Take a Walk

Stroll slowly to nowhere in particular for 30 minutes. Let your senses guide you. Stop and observe deeply whatever catches your attention -  a stone, a tree, an animal. Breathe.


Pamper Your Body

Take a guilt-free nap. Take a leisurely bath with music and candles.


Turn off Electronics

Create a period of time when you will not be disturbed or seduced by any of these demands on our time.


Create a Sacred Box

Put your to-do list, your keys, your wallet, anything you don't need, into the box. Or write down a worry and drop it in. Just for now, let it go.


Prepare a Special Meal 

Put flowers on the table to make it even more special.


Seek Companionship

One of the most precious gifts we can offer is to be a place of refuge for one another. Give quiet time and attention to another.


Reset Your Inner Compass

Make a list of the values and principles that guide your life - both those you follow and those you would love to follow. Speak them out loud, alone, with a loved one, or place them on a vision board.


Surrender a Problem

There are forces larger than us that are at work, healing the world. Imagine these forces know how to solve our problems. Turn them over to their care.


(Adapted from an article Practices for a Simple Sabbath



January 29, 2012

Hello Yogis!

I was doing some reading this weekend on some poses that some of us are working toward. We talk about the need for modifying poses that our muscles and ligaments are not quite ready for. Two poses that many of us are challenging ourselves to move more deeply into are Lotus Pose and Hero's Pose.

Lotus pose occurs in our easy seated pose. It is when we take one heel across toward the front of the opposite hip bone. If this is a pose you would like to work on, grab a pillow before class. Here is an explanation I found on the modified Lotus pose.


Lotus Pose, preparation

Set up blankets to support your pelvis and right knee. Sit in Staff Pose with both legs extended. Bend one knee and place a washcloth behind it. Keeping the knee firmly bent, grip the end of the cloth in one hand and pull toward your body and out to the side to open the inner knee and rotate the thighbone outward. Continue this rotation as you lift your heel with your other hand and place your foot high atop the opposite thigh, near the hip if possible. Note: Discontinue if you experience knee discomfort.


Hero's pose is another pose that many of us are working toward. Again, grabbing a pillow to add support will aid in this pose. 


Hero Pose, modification

Avoid pain in your knees by elevating your pelvis as high as is necessary with folded blankets. Align your heels directly under your outer hips (this is less stressful for the knees than the standard alignment of having your heels outside of your hips). Keep your knees slightly apart, with your thighbones parallel. Place your feet in line with your shins. Sit for several minutes daily. Gradually lower the props over a period of weeks or months.


Women's Circle - Setting Our Course With Vision
Just a reminder that the Women's Circle for February is Wednesday, Feb. 1st. For those of you who are making your first vision board, you will find this an exciting opportunity to set new goals! For those of you who have created a vision board, we will be reviewing the board and determining what blocks there may be in place preventing any goals and come up with ways to provide you support as you create your reality!
Please RSVP by Monday, January 30th. $10 fee toward materials and light snacks. http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/womenscircles.htm

Saturday Morning Yoga Classes
February 4 8:30 - 10:00 AM
March 3 8:30 - 10:00 AM
Drop-in fee of $10


January 22, 2012

Just a reminder that the Women's Circle for making our vision boards is on Wednesday, February 1 at 6:30 PM. Please check out the link at the right, Women's Circles, for more information and RSVP by that Monday evening before.


Also, if you know someone looking for a Spa vacation, please contact me about the Yoga and Meditation Retreat to Jamaica. I promise you that it will be the best vacation you have ever taken! Follow the link below for more information, or contact me.


Now, the news has recently advised people that yoga may not be for all people. In fact, I heard one medical doctor say that 45% of the people who practice yoga should not. That is COMPLETELY BULL! The correct statement would be that each of us need to find the perfect yoga class that offers us what we need. My 84 year old mother is not going to be taking a regular yoga class, and my young, vibrant pregnant moms are more well-suited to avoid injuries in a pre-natal yoga class. I have strong reservations about hot yoga classes. If you have blood pressure issues, have a hard time sweating, or attend a class where the teacher goes around making adjustments which push you deeper into poses, I am very leery about a person taking that class. So finding the proper fit for a yoga class is important. Sometimes, we need to have individual yoga sessions that meet our individual needs. 




January 15, 2012

Upcoming Events at Jill Sand Consulting!

Please join me in any of the wonderful events that we have coming up in the next few months!


Women's Circle - Setting Our Course With Vision

Wednesday, February 1, 2012 


We are revisiting our goals as we start off this new year, a year of promising changes and greater opening of our heart and spirit. To set our course, we will be coming back to vision boards. Some of us have created vision boards previously, and so it is time to revisit them. Others have yet to experience the transformation that clearly defining our vision can accomplish. It is through visualization that we can realize our goals.


In my recent blog on Regrets? Or Opportunities? I share a little bit about visualization: "A lot of people scoff at visualization as some kind of make-believe game. But in truth, visualization is just another term for goal-setting.

Most of us have goals in our work environment. Producing "X" amount of products, reaching "X" amount of clients, teaching "X" amount of material. And so on. These goals may seem a bit lofty, especially as we first set them. But we take steps toward achieving our goal."

So a vision board is nothing more than setting goals for ourselves. What makes it more effective than merely goal-setting though, it that we not only STATE what we want, but we also find pictures and words (visuals) that represent what we want. And then we hang these visualizations in a place where we can look at them and remind ourselves of what we truly want in our lives. 

More information found at the Women's Circle link at right. 


March 7, 2012 Women's Circle - we are looking at either bringing in a guest speaker or walking a meditative labyrinth! More information to follow!


Ready for some FUN in the SUN? With our tax returns coming back, we may feel like it's time to splurge a bit on ourselves. Join me and some of your fellow yoginis on a

Women's Yoga and Meditation Retreat in Jamaica!

Morning and evening yoga and meditation sessions, beach excursions, river excursions, live local music, massages, circles, a workshop, and 3 square meals... all of these are included in this spa retreat! This will NOT be the vacation where you feel like you need a vacation when you get home! Expect to be pampered as this retreat is ALL ABOUT YOU!

Release the Old and Welcome the

New Energy!

In our changing world, there is abundant negative energy floating around that is interfering with our Spiritual growth. We are being called upon to release that energy to create space for the new energy coming in. In this Jamaican retreat, we will work with yoga, meditation, and circles to foster in the healing that needs to take place as we release the negative energy and open up to the new energy. We will also have abundant opportunities to explore the countryside and beaches of beautiful Jamaica.

"One Love, One Heart, Let's get together and feel all right..." 
~ Bob Marley



And can you believe I am already looking toward our summer schedule? Meditations, outdoor yoga classes, possibly new class times... lots of good things in store for our summer yoga!


As always, I thank you for being part of my own journey into wellness! Being surrounded by such great energy, I am eternally thankful, Blessed, and filled with JOY!




January 8, 2012

The Handstand

At the end of 2011, I asked my yoga clients at the home studio to set goals for themselves for 2012. I ask the same from all my yoga clients: what pose do you (realistically) want to feel great in, by the end of 2012?

For me, it is the handstand.

Just so you know, I was never the limber young girl growing up. Sure, my mom signed me up for dance and gymnastics. The only reason I wanted to do gymnastics was because I wanted to jump on the trampoline at Shari Sinns home dance studio. And dancing? Well, I liked the tap shoes. I soon discovered in a class of maybe 15 young girls, I was the least flexible, and what was in my heart just would not play out in my body! So at the mention of performing in the Shakopee Parade, I promptly told my mom I was done with that.

As I grew a bit older, around ten or so, of course we kids would attempt backbends and cartwheels and headstands and handstands, just for fun and bragging rights. I was never the braggart, just the envious one who could make fun of her inability to not open up my hips in a cartwheel. And my handstand always turned into a backbend!

Even the first time I came to the mat for yoga, I knew that this would be a challenge for me. My first classes in yoga were way too advanced for where I was at, and so I put yoga on the back burner for nearly eight years before dusting off my commitment again.

So my second coming to the mat was with my dancer teaching partner, Kerry. Her hamstrings were like wet spaghetti noodles, while mine were like noodles out of the box. She would fall forward into a seated straddle splits with her nose to the ground, and I had the biggest cat back as I attempted to bring my nose to the ground. Shari Sinns gymnastics, all over again.

But this time, I wanted to stick with it. Not to do a headstand, but to build up some strength and improve my balance.

When I began my journey for becoming an instructor, I was about 2 years into my training when I attended a class of other instructors. At one point in the class, we were given free time to play with our poses. I was probably working on a side straddle splits when I noticed one instructor (obviously a previous dancer) happily going into handstand and HOLDING it! There was that envy again. Deep in my heart, I longed to do a handstand. Some things never change.

Two years ago, or maybe it is three now, we started the Advanced Yoga Classes. A couple of the original yoginis were dancers and gymnists, while the majority of us had not completed an inversion past forward fold and downward dog. But we set goals and worked toward those tricky poses. I learned from this experience that practice does make perfect, or at least pretty good.

This goal setting was what I had in mind for you yogis in 2012. Many of you have been practicing for at least a year, some of you have been with me for two or more years, certainly comfortable enough to start setting goals. So please share with me what you 2012 yoga goal is, if you haven’t already. I would love to bring in the preparatory poses and opportunities to help you achieve your goal this year.

Jill's vision of handstand:




January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a marvelous week off, and I look forward to starting our yoga practice off to a great start in 2012! Just a reminder to drink lots of water this next week or two, flushing the body out from all those indulgences from the past month. And in our yoga practice, we'll continue detoxing our bodies.  

We set our goals for poses we want to feel successful in, by the end of 2012. If you still haven't made that dedication to a pose, please do so and let me know, so I can help you work toward achieving that goal! I also offer the challenge for us to find JOY in our everyday lives. Either writing down those little moments of JOY or inspiration in our JOY Journals, or blogging in my forums or elsewhere... let's be AWARE of what makes us happy and inspires us!

I look forward to spending time on the mats with you. I would like to welcome new attendees, including my Mamas-To-Be Yoginis who are meeting on Wednesday Nights at 6:15 throughout the month of January!




Saturday, January 7 Indoor Labyrinth Walk

This is not being offered by myself, but I am planning to participate in a labyrinth walk. From Laurie of YourLifeCORE:

We are all on the path... exactly where we need to be. The labyrinth is a model of that path. At its most basic level the labyrinth is a metaphor for the journey to the center of your deepest self and back out into the world with a broadened understanding of who you are.  

There is a cost of $20 and space is limited to 12, so please let me know if you are interested, and I will forward the email information to you. It sounds like a wonderful meditation opportunity!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012 Women's Circle

Creating Vision Boards

The last time we created vision boards was two years ago, and there is a lot of interest to do this once more. I know that my vision board is complete, and so it's time to set new goals to accomplish.

 A vision board is a simple yet powerful visualization tool that activates the universal law of attraction to begin manifesting your dreams into reality. The concept of the vision board (also known as a goal board, goal map, creativity board or treasure map) has been around for generations, but it’s gained a renewed interest and popularity after success expert John Assaraf related his story of using vision boards to achieve his dreams in the best-selling DVD documentary The Secret.

A vision board is typically a poster board on which you paste or collage images that you’ve torn out from various magazines. It’s simple.

The idea behind a vision board is that when you surround yourself with images of who you want to become, what you want to have, where you want to live, or where you want to vacation, your life changes to match those images and those desires.

Time: 6:30PM

Cost: $10 for materials and light snack


Jamaican Yoga and Meditation Retreat

There is still room for participants to join us in the Jamaican retreat March 25-April 1!! If part of your goal for 2012 is to bring more yoga and mediation into your life, I hope you'll consider joining us for this fun, relaxing and deeply personal retreat. Contact me for more information or check out the registration website at http://tropicalescapes.biz/escapes/2012_Jill_Sand_JA.html


Jill's Blogs

I have set a goal to spend more time in my blogs, focusing on what brings me JOY this year. I invite you to read and respond to my blogs. Just check out the link at the right side bar.


New Photos

Pictures of the winners from the yoga gift drawings are found in the Photos link at the right sidebar. Congratulations to all of you!



December 18, 2011

Hello Yogis!

As we wrap up the last week of classes for 2011, I wish to thank you, from the bottom of my Heart, for such a wonderfully Blessed 2011. Jill Sand Consulting has flourished this past year, and I hope that I can continue to meet your wellness needs in 2012. Just a reminder of my mission statement:

My mission is to provide you with wellness opportunities for your body, mind, and Spirit. Whether you take a class with me or you visit me online, I hope to provide opportunities for you to learn and grow on your journey through life!

In the home studio, we are setting our goals for our 2012 practice. NOW is the time to hang those sticky notes on the 908 Yoga Poses poster! (BTW, I just read that there are over 84,000 yoga poses. Okay, we will stick with the first 908!!)

I have just one more opening in my evening Thursday 6:00-7:00 class, and the Tuesday evening 6:00-7:00 class is full. There is still room available in the Tuesday and Thursday 8:15-9:15 morning classes, the Tuesday evening advanced class 7:15-8:30, as well as the Friday afternoon 1:30-2:30 class. (Note time has changed back to the afternoon for the winter session.) I ahve ADDED a January Pregnancy class. Four weeks long. There is room for 1 or possibly 2 more people, so please share with your pregnant friends. They can be VERY pregnant and have never done a yoga class, to attend this session! Contact me for more information!!

I came across this article in Yoga Journal that really describes how winter offers us an opportunity to give ourselves "self-care:" taking the time to match our bodies to the shortness of daylight hours and just basically spending more time going within, rather than forcing ourselves to get out there. Seems to contradict the messages from the media and from our culture. And of course, our obligations. But if we even just take a few extra minutes each day to quiet our lives, it benefits us in so many ways.

Enjoy this article!



Winter Wonder Yin

An acupuncturist explains why the final month of the year, an inherently yin season, is not the time to indulge in yang activities like shopping, partying, and staying up late.

By Laurel Kallenbach

The final few months of the year often find us in a frantic state of shopping, decorating, traveling, and other high-energy activity. Yet instead of having fun, we often end up feeling ill, anxious, or depressed. The reason, according to Taoist philosophy and traditional Chinese medicine, is that the action-packed schedules we keep at this time of year fall out of sync with the earth's natural cycles.

"We naturally have less energy to burn during the winter," explains acupuncturist Carolyn Cohen, L.Ac., who teaches at Yo San University, a college of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) in Santa Monica, California. "So when we engage in behaviors more appropriate for summer (staying up late and dashing around town) it's no wonder that the forced cheer of the holiday season can wear a bit thin."

Taoist philosophy conceptualizes universal balance in terms of yin and yang, complementary forces that govern the universe. Yin characteristics are cool, wet, slow, feminine, and quiet, whereas yang is the opposite: warm, dry, fast, masculine, extroverted. Winter, the yin season, is a time for storing and conserving energy in the way a bear retains fat by hibernating, or a farmer stores food for the cold months ahead.

In agrarian cultures, people spend the shortest, darkest days indoors by the fire, eating warm, slow-cooked, nourishing food and sharing stories with their families. The incongruity between winter's restful, introspective, yin nature and the frenetic way many Americans spend their holidays can contribute to seasonal affective disorder, depression, exhaustion, and other manifestations of what is known in TCM as shen (or spiritual) disharmony.

"Winter solstice, just three or four days before Christmas, is the darkest, most yin day of the year," says Cohen. "Instead of turning inward, we're celebrating with excess and yang activity. This artificiality creates stress, and many people dread the season as a result."

To stay balanced during winter, suggests Cohen, conserve your yang energy. Restorative yoga, tai chi, qigong, and walking are best suited for yin season, as they safeguard your energy reserves. "Think of these practices as an investment of your 'energy paycheck,'" says Cohen. "Don't use up what little winter energy you have with overactivity and added stress."

Eating cooked, spicy yang foods provides another good way to replenish energy. Prepare yang-strengthening soups, slow-simmered stews, beans, roasted root vegetables, and warm drinks. Add yang spices such as garlic, ginger, black pepper, cloves, and basil to increase the warming effect. Minimize your intake of yin foods such as raw vegetables, salad greens, and cold drinks.

If you find quiet, more modest ways to celebrate the holidays, you'll stay in tune with the season and feel less need to release tension by overeating or rampant spending. You'll also have more time and energy to connect with close friends and family. If you're out of sync with the mall mobs with maxed-out credit cards, chances are you'll find yourself in step with the quiet, nurturing yin nature of winter.

December 11, 2011


There is JOY in the season, and I wish to bring my YOGIs joy this week! I am having a drawing for some wonderful prizes this week. This drawing is for all participants who plan to continue their yoga practice with me into January! I will be bringing paper along to all classes for you to sign up for a drawing for a yoga-inspired necklace, a yoga mat, a yoga book, OR a yoga bag!! Yes, these prizes are valued at $15 - $75, and it is my thank you for being such a wonderful group of yogis! I will ask my Tuesday morning class to assist me with the drawing on Tuesday, December 20th. You may enter the drawing for as many classes as you attend with Jill Sand Consulting! One prize per person, however.

Home Studio Classes 

The last week of classes at the Home Studio are NEXT week. The new session starts right after the Holidays. I am giving you a head start to sign up, since classes fill quickly. I will be opening the classes to the public at the end of this week. The winter schedule is 12 weeks long, our longest session of the year. The Home Studio classes start on Tuesday, January 3 and run through Friday, March 23. I always offer my best rates for the New Year Session because I know how tough it is to turn around after the holidays and pay for 12 weeks of classes. If this year is feeling particularly hard on you, you are welcome to pay half now and the second half in February.

One class a week is $100 ($8.33/class)

Two classes a week are $190 ($7.91/class)

Three classes a week are $275 ($7.63)

If you buy a yoga bag with your classes, you can take an additional 20% off the prices above. Yoga bags are $75. 

Classes Outside the Home Studio

Just some reminders:

This is the last week of classes at Eagle Creek. We are currently waiting to see if we can start new classes in January. Keep recruiting, ladies!

This is the last week of classes at the Junior High. We continue on after the holidays through February 1st.

The Middle School has classes through next Monday (the 19th), and we start our new session Monday, January 9th. You can pay me next week or the first day of classes for the new session.

There is NO CLASS at the Eden Praire Police Department on Thursday, December 15th. The make-up date for that is February 16th.


I know that this time of year can be stressful, so I remind you to fill your hearts with JOY in the coming days, weeks, and months.




December 4, 2011

B R E A T H E !!!

We have hit that time of year when it is easy to get caught up in the "busy-ness" of the moment. Expectations of cookies and treats to make and share with others, expectations of gifts to buy, wrap and share with those who have meant so much to us during the past year, expectations of a home perfectly decorated for the holiday season, expectations... expectations... expectations! Whew! No wonder so many people dread the holiday season and can't wait for it to pass!

During this time of year, it is important that we let go of those expectations we place on ourselves and the expectations we allow others to place on us. It is important to recall what this time of year means for us. For some, this is a religious and spiritual time where we renew our faith. For others, this time of year represents family and friends time. Whatever the meaning of this holiday season, it is important that we not get caught up in the advertising and other propaganda which tries to tell us exactly what this holiday SHOULD mean to us. We look into our hearts for our own personal interpretation for this time of year.

Because of the "busy energy" of the season, this week will be our time to remember to BREATHE through those intense periods of the season.

I am inserting my breathing video here, and I remind you to take a couple minutes each day to just breathe deeply.


Just one minute, or 4-6 breaths, can take us from operating in our sympathetic nervous system to operating in our parasympathetic nervous system. ( I found a cute little video clip comparing the 2 systems here: http://itc.gsw.edu/faculty/gfisk/anim/autonomicns.swf )


November 27, 2011

This week, we will explore the two most commonly used poses in my classes, Warrior I and Warrior II. It seems strange to include “warriors” in yoga, doesn’t it? But the warriors go back to the texts of the Bhagavad-Gita, a “dialog between two famous and feared warriors, Krishna and Arjuna, set on a battlefield between two great armies spoiling for a fight. What’s really being commemorated in [these poses’] name, and held up as an ideal for all practitioners, is the “spiritual warrior,” who bravely does battle with the universal enemy, self-ignorance, the ultimate source of all our suffering.” Yoga Journal

Warrior Pose I

Warrior Pose I improves balance and agility. It stretches the chest and lungs, shoulders and neck, belly, groins (psoas)  It strengthens the shoulders and arms, and the muscles of the back. Warrior I Pose strengthens and stretches the thighs, calves, and ankles.

We modify our arm position if we are experiencing shoulder issues. We modify our lower body by moving into more of a lunge if we are experiencing lower back issues or if we are pregnant. To take the pose out of the lower back, we can think about lifting the pubis bone toward the navel while lengthening the tailbone toward the floor. As we move into the bent knee, we continue to lift and descend these two bones while keeping our pelvis parallel to the floor.

Warrior Pose II

Warrior II Pose strengthens and stretches the legs and ankles. It stretches the groins, chest and lungs, shoulders.  Warrior II Pose stimulates abdominal organs and increases stamina. It relieves backaches, especially through second trimester of pregnancy. The pose is therapeutic for carpal tunnel syndrome, flat feet, infertility, osteoporosis, and sciatica.

Caution should be taken if we have a headache or neck issues. Taking the gaze in the same direction of the torso, as opposed to toward the extended front fingers, can alleviate any issues with this.

 Christmas Specials!!

Just a reminder that the store is OPEN at http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/apps/links! Yoga mats, yoga blocks, yoga socks and gloves, clothes, etc.! And don’t forget, if you buy one of the yoga bags made by Mary Kornder, you will receive 20% off your classes for the new year! Now is the time to tell your loved ones about your yoga needs. Please direct them to my link above, where it is all organized for you. (The Amazon link should also include Cyber Monday sales!)


Upcoming Events at Jill Sand Consulting

New Classes start at Eagle Creek this week. This ten-week session will continue through March 5, 2012. (No classes on January 2, 16, 23 and February 20.)

Saturday Yoga Class – Saturday, December 3, 2011, 8:30 -10:00 AM.  Please RSVP by this Thursday evening.

Women’s Circle – Our Life Purpose  Wednesday, December 7, 6:30 PM  There is still room available. Love donations only. No Women’s Circle in January, 2012.

Women's Yoga and Meditation Jamaican Retreat

Sunday, March 25, 2012 – Sunday, April 1, 2012

Registration at http://tropicalescapes.biz/escapes/2012_Jill_Sand_JA.html

We currently have 5 people attending, and we are hoping you will join us!! We are staying at Bromley, near Ocho Rios. For flight information, you can contact Sue at trvbysue@mncable.net

November 20, 2011

Let There Be Light

In the Darkest Months of the Year!

This is that time of year, when our bodies start to crave more sleep. It is a craving which aligns with the circadian rhythm of our bodies. (A circadian rhythm, popularly referred to as body clock, is an endogenously driven, roughly 24-hour cycle in biochemical, physiological, or behavioural processes. A circadian rhythm, popularly referred to as body clock, is an endogenously driven, roughly 24-hour cycle in biochemical, physiological, or behavioural processes. Wiki) Our body clocks adjust to the amount of sunlight we are exposed to. So naturally, with fewer hours of sunlight, we crave more hours of sleep.

With so much darkness in these next couple months, it is possible to bring light into our lives through awareness. We bring awareness to our yoga practice by taking our attention to it. We can "shine a light" on a particular aspect of a pose. Last week, we brought light to our breathing and to the strength of our poses. We became aware of the exhale, shining a light on those core abdominal muscles by strengthening them to help us find stability and balance.

The reverse can also be true. We might move through an entire yoga practice without a thought about the poses. We still benefit from the practice, but we are not shining a light on any particular aspect of it. So the benefit is not fully realized. Typically this happens because we are distracted by the stresses in our lives. 

This is the time of year in which there are many stresses in our lives. We spend more money than we think we should. We veer from our regular diets and indulge in foods and beverages that affect our overall health in the short run. We put too many expectations on ourselves and then are sadly disappointed when we cannot achieve all we set out to achieve. Because of this, it is important that we remind ourselves to shine a light in our lives. Keep our attention on the things we want in our lives, and let the other aspects stay in the dark, not giving them our attention.

In our yoga classes this week, we are going to shine the light on all we are thankful for. We will be given extra meditation time for doing so.

As always, I am thankful for each of you. Every time you join me on the mat, I am overcome with gratitude that you choose me for your yoga teacher.

The peace in me recognizes the peace in you,



There are no yoga classes this Thursday, Thanksgiving. There is a very limited offering to join us this Tuesday night to make up the Home Studio classes. Or you can join us the following Tuesday. Two other make-up options for Thanksgiving are Friday morning at 8:15-9:15 (stay away from the stressful Black Friday crowds, or get in the right groove before joining them!) or Saturday, December 4 from 8:30-10:00 (90 minute class!). Just let me know if you plan to attend so I can count the number of mats on the floor. I already have heard from a couple of you regarding this Tuesday night, so no need for you to email back.


Wednesday, December 7

6:30 PM

In this month’s Women’s Circle, we will explore the topic of our life purpose, and take a look at 44 life themes, finding the life theme that encompasses what our own purpose might be.

Wouldn’t it be great to know and understand what this purpose is? Think how much we could accomplish, if we knew the greater picture for our time on Earth!

Light food ad beverages available

Love donations if it moves you

November 13,2011

Everyday Miracles in Yoga

This weekend, I am reminded to look for the miracles in our daily lives. Two weeks ago, I thought I would be losing my old dog, Spur, to kidney failure. We had said our goodbyes, and he received many extra hugs and pats and words of encouragement. Since we had just lost our 15 year old cat a couple weeks earlier, I prayed that Spur might stick around a bit longer. And danged if he didn’t rally and come back even stronger than before! We saw the miracle in that, and we were thankful. We still worried about how tough the winter might be for him, but you deal with life one day at a time.

On Saturday, we found Spur in his favorite spot, near the pond. He had died from drowning in the mud. It wasn’t his kidneys that took him. It was his love for adventure and mischief, the traits we loved so much about him. And we realized that these past two weeks were “bonus days” for spending time with Spur. He probably was meant to go two weeks ago, but we asked for a miracle and we got it.

It reminds us to look for the everyday miracles in our lives.

In yoga, I hear on a weekly basis all the good things yoga has done for you. Old injuries get better or even go away. Many times I will hear, “I can’t believe that my (fill in the blank) has gotten to the point that I no longer need to modify my practice! It’s a miracle!”

If we open ourselves to the possibility that miracles CAN happen, we make space for them to actually happen.

That is the lesson I learned this weekend, and I invite you to look for the everyday miracles on the mat and in your lives.





November 6, 2011

New Classes at Jill Sand Consulting!

Our new late fall session starts this week at the home studio, and there is still room left in our morning classes, if you are interested in joining us! SCHEDULING NOTE: The Friday 1:30 class has been moved to 8:15 to accomodate people's schedules. So now, you can attend yoga three mornings a week at 8:15 and start your day off feeling strong, balanced, and serene!

OTHER NOTES: No yoga class this week at Eagle Creek, and the Junior High begins its next ten week session this week. A separate email will go out to those yoginis.


This past week, I was reading through old yoga journals and websites, and I came across this article, which I am copying here and adding my own comments along with the article.

5 Scariest Things about Yoga (Yoga Journal website)

October 25, 2011

by Erica Rodefer


Most yoga students think of their practice as something that helps them face their fears, while this is mostly true I have to admit that there have been times when the practice has given me a fright, as well! In honor of Halloween next week, I thought I'd share with you five scary things about yoga.

1. Injuries. In theory, there shouldn't be many injuries from practicing yoga. Yoga is supposed to be therapeutic and help us heal our injuries, right? The reality is, when we practice the same patterns over and over with incorrect alignment (Chaturanga-Down Dog-Up Dog, anyone?), we put ourselves at risk for injuries. That's pretty scary stuff! So it's important to work with a qualified teacher who can spot incorrect alignment and help you correct it early on. Jill: This is why, in class, we always work with taking our body into alignment before moving into certain poses that can cause injury.

2. Too Much Emphasis on Perfection. Sometimes I'm so worried about alignment and doing things perfectly on my yoga mat, I get caught up in trying to reach perfection in other areas of my life, too. This is not a recipe for success. Of course, as much as yoga has sometimes fed my Type A personality, it has helped me learn to do as much as I can and let the rest go! Jill: In class, I often remind us that we are working with our bodies, as they are today. Just this.

3. Revealing Spandex, Athlete's Foot, Plantar Warts, and Body Odor. I'm just saying ... When you are in close quarters sweating with other yoga students sometimes you get to know them a little better than you really want to. But that's a risk I'm willing to take to reap all the benefits of this practice! Jill: I had to laugh at this one. I think the author says it all!

4. Being Too Dependent on Teachers. I love my teachers SO much. They're wise. They're giving. I feel comfortable asking them questions about life, not just yoga. As much as I rely on my teachers, I sometimes worry that I respect their opinions so much that I forget to take a step back to find my own truth (which is ironic since that's kind of the whole point of the practice!). Jill: This is why I remind us in class to listen to our bodies, to find that place in our practice that works for us. Remember my story about the woman in my class who basically was doing her own thing throughout class, and then later thanked me for a great class? LOL! But she told me my giving her permission to listen to her own body was shat she needed that day.

5. Fear of Falling, Looking Silly, or Chanting Out of Tune. We all know no one else is paying much attention to us during yoga class, but sometimes even the most experienced yoga students can't help but look around the room and wonder if our neighbor saw our graceful face plant or knew it was us who Om'd a little bit too long. Jill: That's why we try not to take ourselves so seriously in class. Laughter is the best medicine!


Is there anything about yoga that scares you? Jill: Chanting, but I am working on that! Haha!


See you on the mat!


Jamaican Yoga and Meditation Women's Retreat!

Registration is now open for the Women's Yoga and Meditation Retreat in Jamaica! Here is the link: http://tropicalescapes.biz/escapes/2012_Jill_Sand_JA.html

Women's Yoga and Meditation Retreat with Jill Sand

  Island: Jamaica   Date: March 25 - April 1, 2012   Accommodations: Bromley   Retreat Details: Release the Old and Welcome the New Energy!

In our changing world, there is abundant negative energy floating around that is interfering with our Spiritual growth. We are being called upon to release that energy to create space for the new energy coming in. In this Jamaican retreat, we will work with yoga, meditation, and circles to foster in the healing that needs to take place as we release the negative energy and open up to the new energy. We will also have abundant opportunities to explore the countryside and beaches of beautiful Jamaica.

"One Love, One Heart, Let's get together and feel all right..."
~ Bob Marley


Yoga Instructor: Jill Sand

Jill has been offering Women's Workshops since 2006. In the summer of 2007, Jill retired from being an elementary school teacher and took a few months to see where her interests led her. Always a fitness junkie, Jill was focusing mostly on yoga at the time. She was encouraged by friends to train to be a yoga instructor. Jill has completed her 200 hours training through YogaFit and is certified through Yoga Alliance. Jill continues her training as a yoga teacher. Jill Sand Wellness Consulting continues to grow by offering monthly women's circles, workshops and retreats. Click here for more on Jill.  

Package Price:

Shared occupancy:
$995 per person

Downstairs in the Spanish Fort, cool in the hottest of weather, there are two rooms with twin beds bath and a “common” area with up to two twin beds set to the sides. There are two bathrooms for the 4-6 people to share making this a great option for a budget travelers. Sign up to share the space with friends, or sign up individually and enjoy getting to know others that do the same.

Standard room:
$1195 per person Double Occupancy
$1395 per person Single Occupancy

The Lavinia room is located on the main floor with two twin beds, its own bathroom and a secluded verandah. It is available for two friends or single travelers that would like to be placed with a roommate.
Mother's apartment is in an adjacent building where the owner's apartment is housed as well. Offering some additional personal space, here there are two bedrooms, one set as a single, the other a double, sharing a bathroom and a nice verandah.

Deluxe room:
$1395 per person Double Occupancy
$1695 per person Single Occupancy

Also on the main floor there are two large master suites, the Pringle and Simson, each with private verandahs, generous bathrooms and antique mahogany four poster beds. A wonderful option for an individual looking to treat herself or great for two people as a twin bed can be added.
The “Schoolroom” cottage is adjacent to the main house and has a small bedroom with a double bed, spacious living area (where a twin bed can be added for double occupancy) a fully equipped kitchen and a private porch with great views of the Diablo Mountains.

  Package Inclusions:

  • Round trip airport transfers Montego Bay – Bromley – Montego Bay on the retreat start and end dates
  • Seven nights accommodations
  • Three meals and snacks daily beginning with dinner on March 25, 2012 and ending with breakfast on April 1, 2012
  • Four island activities/excursions: two beach trips, a visit to a local artist home for afternoon tea, tour of the art studios and a swim at the headwaters of the White River, and an evening of Nyabingi (local Rasta) Drummers and Dancers
  • Unlimited access to all of Bromley's facilities including the yoga space and props i.e. mats, straps and blocks
  • One body treatment (Choices will likely include Deep tissue massage, Thai Massage and Yoga Nidra but the availability of the local therapists needs to be confirmed)
  • Service charges and taxes

  Package Exclusions:

  • Airfare and travel to Jamaica
  • Gratuities for the house staff, tips for taxis, tour guides etc. are at your discretion
  • Personal expenses including souvenirs, additional massages, incidentals, extra excursions, alcoholic beverages etc.
  • Travel Insurance - There are no refunds or exchanges at any time for any reason. We recommend that you verify your health insurance coverage and purchase travel insurance

October 30, 2011

New Late Fall Yoga Session starts next week! The evening classes are nearly full, but there is plenty of room in the morning classes and Friday afternoon class!

Yoga and the Chakras - What are YOU working On?

Last week, we completed our chakra series of focusing on each of our 7 main chakras. This week, we implement into our practice what we've learned! We know we can focus on our body (always, as we move from pose to pose), our mind (by bringing our attention to one aspect of the body), and our Spirit (as we let go of our own thoughts and allow inspiration stemming from our belief system to enter our practice). So if we are working with balance and stability (chakra 1), tight hips (chakra 2), digestive issues (chakra 2 and 3), or sore shoulders (chakras 4 and 5) for instance, we can bring our attention there. If we are working through emotional or mental issues like letting go of some negative thought patterns or decreasing stress from our lives (chakras 4, 5 and 6), we can bring our attention there. Or if we are wanting to become a more Spiritual person, we can open our hearts and crown chakra (chakras 4 and 7) to allow that inspiration into our practice. It's all that simple!

Look for even more fun this coming Saturday, November 5th, as we experience a yoga class of chakra sun salutations to open the chakras! This is a drop-in class of $10 for 90 minutes, 8:30-10:00AM.

Here is a link for the Jamaican Retreat location where we will be staying March 25 - April 1, 2012! I have been playing tag with Tropical Escapes Yoga Retreats this week. They were out of town for most of the week, but I expect the link to be furnished early this coming week. Another email will come out with that information! http://www.bromleyjamaica.com/rooms.html

Join our Wednesday Women's Circle on November 2 at 6:30PM with Brenda! We will be working with our Guardian Angels, and then Brenda is going to offer us information on the Arch Angels and how the Angels can assist us in the coming days. Handouts will be provided.

October 24, 2011

Namaste Yogis!

This week's focus for yoga is on the Seventh Chakra, the Crown Chakra, which is found on the top of the head. For a specific location, think about a baby's soft spot on the head: that is the same location. The Crown Chakra is that place where we bring the idea of yoga being a body, mind, and spirit unification. You can practice yoga without having a spiritual experience, but for those who have faith in a Higher Power, no matter the belief system, when that belief system is brought into their yoga experience, it can be life altering. By life-altering, I mean that you might have an "ah-ha" moment, or you might feel an emotional release, or perhaps your heart fills with love. Another example is when you have that "we are all related" feeling.

If one is looking to connect to that belief system in their yoga practice, they focus on their Crown Chakra. Many people envision light coming into the Crown Chakra, or perhaps light spilling out from the Crown Chakra. The light can be either white or purple. The light represents that connection to their belief system, be it God, or Jesus, or their Higher Self. In yoga, any faith is acceptable, as is no faith at all. We make it what we need from the practice.

Let's go back to the location of the Crown. In babies, that spot is soft. In adults, that spot is hard. That idea can be enough to make you say, "Ah-ha..." Since we adults have hard crowns, we can work with opening them up, at least energetically. In class this week, we will work with Rabbit pose and Dolphin pose, taking the crown of the head to the mat this time. We will also focus on taking the crown of our heads toward the ceiling... or higher!

I look forward to our time on the mats together!
Shanti (Peace),


New Session for the Home Studio Classes starts November 7th. Another email will come out specifically about that.


There is still room to sign up for the Wednesday, November 2 Circle with Brenda.
See Women's Circles Sidebar


The next 90-minute yoga class is Saturday, November 5
from 8:30-10:00AM
Drop-in cost of $10


I just received the official contract and will be submitting it back to Tropical Escapes on Monday. After that, they will open the link for you to sign up. Between all my yoga classes, there are at least 6 people who are definite "yes" and several others who are "maybes." I know it can be hard to really commit yourself, but just as an FYI, Tropical Escapes opens these yoga retreats up to everyone who visits their website, and they advertise through Yoga Journal and online yoga sites. In other words, the "up to 18 participants" can fill quickly. I will send out an email as soon as I learn that the link is opened. Another FYI: a $500 down payment is required at sign-up, and the rest is due at a later date.

If any of you know of a travel agent who'd like to explore our flight options, please let me know!

October 16, 2011

Hello Yogis!

(NOTE: There will be no class on Wednesday at the Junior High School because of teacher workshop day.)
Yoga and the Sixth Chakra

We continue to work our way up the chakras of our bodies' energy, and this week our focus will be on the Sixth Chakra, the third eye. The Sixth Chakra represents taking our yoga journey to our inner world. This chakra is the seat of our judgment, our emotional intelligence, and our notion of reality, rationality, and wisdom. We work with our ability to meditate, giving our undivided attention to one focus.

Our third eye lies directly between our two physical eyes. It is believed to be the center for our intuition and insights. It is where we interpret our dreams and symbols that come into our lives.

Working with our Sixth Chakra in yoga helps us improve our memory, bring more creativity to our lives, and deepen our ability to visualize the results of our actions, both present and future.


Upcoming Events at Jill Sand Consulting

Get out your calendars and start writing these dates and events down! There is a LOT going on right now! Let me know which events you are interested in attending.

Namaste, Jill

November 2, 2011 Women's Circle - Message to Our Guardian Angels

Brenda asks that we write a letter to our Guardian Angels, asking for what we want, whether it be health, happiness, or whatever our needs are. We will offer these pleas to our Guardian Angels through a burning ceremony (dress for the weather!), and then Brenda will offer information on the Arch Angels and how the Angels can assist us through our days.
6:30-8:00 PM
Light foods and beverages included
$25 suggested donation

November 5, 2011 Saturday Yoga

The next Saturday Yoga class is being offered on Saturday, November 5 at 8:30 - 10:00 AM. Cost is $10 for this 90 minute session. I expect these classes will start filling up, now that the weather has gotten a bit colder, so sign up right away as class will be limited to 10 people.

March 25 - April 1,2012
Yoga and Meditation Retreat with Jill
in Bromley, Jamaica!

http://www.tropicalescapes.biz/featured_properties.html (corrected link)


  • All ground transportation (airport transfers one each way)
  • 7 nights accommodations
  • All food - 3 meals a day plus snacks - all Caribbean recipes - vegetarian offerings - locally grown ingredients
  • One free massage, Reiki, or Yoga Nidra meditation per person
  • 4 Local Excursions including an afternoon at Private Beach Cove, evening of Nyabingi (local Rasta) Drummers and Dancers, hiking down a gorge to swim in headwaters of White River - tea and tour of a local artist’s galleries, and a day at the beach
This Jamaican Yoga and Meditation Retreat will be offered to the general population through Tropical Escapes, the organization I am working with, so if you are planning to attend, please let me know right away. At most, they can accommodate 18 adults. As soon as I am given the link, you will be able to sign up with Tropical Escapes and leave your down payment with them. I am currently looking for best rates to fly into Montego Bay, and I will pass this information along to interested participants.

I have one person interested in sharing the 6-person space (three bedrooms and 2 bathrooms), so let me know if you would like to share that space as well.

I am looking forward to sharing this women's retreat experience with others in a safe, nurturing environment where we will hold women's circles and a workshop or two while enjoying the experience of getting to know Jamaica. Shanti (Peace)!

Jamaican Yoga and Meditation Women's Retreat

Jamaican Yoga and Meditation Women’s Retreat

With Jill Sand, Women’s Wellness Consultant and Yoga Instructor

March 25 – April 1, 2012

Bromley, Jamaica


7 Night Package Rate: (does NOT include airfare)


$1,695 Deluxe Single Occupancy or $1,395 Deluxe Double Occupancy (3 rooms)

$1,395 Standard Single Occupancy or $1,195 Standard Double Occupancy (3 rooms)
$995 Basic Shared Occupancy (6 beds in 3 rooms sharing 2 bathrooms)


Also included in the price:

  • All ground transportation (airport transfers one each way)
  • 7 nights accommodations
  • All food - 3 meals a day plus snacks - all Caribbean recipes - vegetarian offerings - locally grown ingredients
  • One free massage, Reiki, or Yoga Nidra meditation per person
  • 4 Local Excursions including an afternoon at Private Beach Cove, evening of Nyabingi (local Rasta) Drummers and Dancers, hiking down a gorge to swim in headwaters of White River - tea and tour of a local artist’s galleries, and a day at the beach

Release the Old and Welcome the New Energy:

Yoga and Meditation Retreat


In our changing world, there is abundant negative energy floating around that is interfering with our Spiritual growth. We are being called upon to release that energy to create space for the new energy coming in. In this Jamaican retreat, we will work with yoga, meditation, and circles to foster in the healing that needs to take place as we release the negative energy and open up to the new energy. We will also have abundant opportunities to explore the countryside and beaches of beautiful Jamaica.


“One Love, One Heart,

Let's get together and feel all right…”

~ Bob Marley


Contact Jill Sand at jillsandconsulting@yahoo.com

October 9, 2011

Yoga and Chakra 5 - Our Communication

Perhaps at one point or another in our lives, we've thought to ourselves, I wish I had said something in a serious situation. And there may have been other times when we had thought, I probably should not have said anything. Open communication can be very difficult, even with those we love. It's important to speak our truth and not "swallow" it. And yet we must balance that with getting along with others. Not speaking our truth can result in throat illnesses like sore throat and laryngitis as well as teeth and gum issues.

In our yoga practice, we begin many classes with neck and throat exercises. We lift the chin to open the throat, and we lower the chin to close the throat. We work with poses that remind us to keep the throat open, and we balance that with poses in which we close the throat. Think of cow and cat poses. In cow pose, we feel the throat open, and in cat pose, we feel the throat close. In downward facing dog, the throat is open. In child's pose, the throat is closed. In butterfly, we open the throat. In bound angle, we close the throat. And so on. When I design classes, I look for the mix, because some of us are working on being more communicative, while others of us are working on being less communicative. ALL of us are working to achieve the BALANCE.

Look for opportunities to work with the throat (and even make some noise) this week in yoga. We'll even find ourselves roaring like lions in our sun salutations series this week!




Women's Yoga and Meditation Retreat!

Mark your calendars and update your passports! I am in the final planning stages of offering a yoga and meditation retreat to St. Lucia March 24th - March 31st, 2012. Please let me know if you are interested, as the group I am working with will also be opening this up to the general public, and I want to be sure that YOU get first dibs at the retreat!

More information to come soon!

October 2, 2011

Shanti (Peace) Yogis!

This week, out focus in class will be on the fourth chakra, the Heart. The Heart chakra lies between the bottom three chakras, represented by our earthiness, and the top three chakras, represented by our place in spirit.

The heart chakra is represented by the Earth element, air. Thus, in the body, the fourth chakra is our breath. In class, this means we will continue to work with our deep, three part yoga breathing which opens our lungs (and heart) fully. Expect chest expansion poses to further open the Heart. We'll even work in some Dancer's pose!

The Heart is the place of love and compassion, and so we are reminded to show love and compassion for ourselves and others. In class, that means that we let go of any expectations, judgments, and competition. It is what it is, becomes our motto in yoga.

Until we meet on the mats!

Namaste, Jill

Women's Circle this week!

There is still room to join us in our Circle for this month, on Wednesday, October 5 at 6:00-7:30. Our focus is on Fall Detoxification! We'll practice a few simple ways to detoxify the body, and I will send you home with dozens more suggestions! Light snacks and beverages will be available, and you may leave a love donation if you wish, for supplies and food. http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/womenscircles.htm

Please let me know by Tuesday morning if you plan to attend.

September 25, 2011

 Hello Yogis! It looks like we might have a few beautiful days in the coming days. Get out and enjoy them as much as you can!

Yoga and the Third Chakra, Our Solar Plexus

This week, we focus our practice on our third chakra, the solar plexus. The solar plexus is located above the belly button and below the bottom of our rib cage. It is represented by the color yellow and the Earth symbol is fire.

The third chakra deals with issues of personal power, self esteem, willfulness and energy. Anger and fear are stored here. It is the place for "letting go." Physically, the third chakra deals with the upper digestive system. It also relates to our eyes and our sight.

In class, we will work with our warrior poses and do some abdominal work to strengthen and balance our third chakra. As always, we'll listen to our bodies and do what is right for us. Sometimes, the breath and "letting go" are the best lessons we can learn when working with this chakra!

October Saturday Yoga Class- THIS COMING SATURDAY!!
Our Saturday, October 1 Yoga Class runs from 8:30 – 10:00 AM. The focus for the class is to work with our breathing as a healing tool. Our 3-part yoga breathing offers so much healing for each of us. From the intake of the breath through our nostrils to filter the oxygen, to the outtake of the breath through our nostrils as we release toxins from our bodies. This is not just yoga talk. Scientific evidence supports the change that occurs in the cellular level as we breathe in oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide. Both western medicine and eastern medicine include breathing as part of the healing process. So the more we know and understand how to control our breathing as well as breathe into certain areas of our body, the more we can work towards healing ourselves! It’s all good!
October Women's Circle - Fall Detoxification!

Fall is a natural time of transition and offers us the opportunity to create a gentle detoxification for our body, mind and Spirit. We are reminded to slow down and relax, so we don't feel depleted and sick once winter sets in. Foods, stress, unplugging from media, massage, meditation, yoga... all welcome ways to detox the body.
Join me in exploring different ways we can detox our bodies!

WEDNESDAY, October 5, 2011
(NOTE: Date has changed)
6:00 - 7:30 PM
Light foods and beverages included
Love donation if it moves you

November Women's Circle - Message to Our Guardian Angels,
Guided by Brenda Vizenor
Brenda asks that we write a letter to our Guardian Angels, asking for what we want, whether it be health, happiness, or whatever our needs are. We will offer these pleas to our Guardian Angels through a burning ceremony (dress for the weather!), and then Brenda will offer information on the Arch Angels and how teh Angels can assist us through our days.
WEDNESDAY, November 2, 2011
6:30-8:00 PM
Light foods and beverages included
$25 donation
Release the Old and Welcome the New Energy: Yoga and Meditation Retreat
In our changing world, there is abundant negative energy floating around that is interfering with our Spiritual growth. We are being called upon to release that energy to create space for the new energy coming in. In this retreat, we will work with yoga, meditation, and circles to foster in the healing that needs to take place as we release the negative energy and open up to the new energy.
March 24-31, 2012
Destination still being finalized, but it is looking like a Caribbean experience!
Namaste (the peace in me recognizes the peace in you),

September 18, 2011

Hello Yogis! And welcome to those of you that were unable to make the first week of yoga! I look forward to seeing you on the mat these next seven weeks!

I hope this rainy Sunday allows you to just enjoy a fall day with not much on the agenda! Take it easy and maybe even get a nap in on one of these next few rainy days! The rain has been a motivator for Jeff to plant some grass seed alongside the newly paved driveway. So don't be alarmed as you show up for the home studio classes this week and see stakes alongside the driveway. Jeff asks that we not drive on the grass the next couple weeks, as we let the new grass seed take hold and grow. Park on the driveway or alongside the gravel part of the driveway. Thank you very much! The man always has a project going on. LOL

Yoga and Our Second Chakra

The second chakra represents water, always moving and fluid. It identifies with our hips and low back. It is the place where we work with our immune system and our reproductive system for both men and women. In class, I talk about "flushing out" the immune system. It is the image of water that we have when we think of flushing. Any poses that allow us to bend at the hips flushes the immune system. Any pose that opens the hip flexors strengthens our ability to fight colds and allergies. As many of you know, on my recent trip to the UK, I came down with a nasty "travelers cold." I hadn't had any immune dysfunction since last November, when I increased my own yoga practice and started treating my allergies with Chinese herbs. On vacation, I had backed way off on my yoga, and so I was not surprised when I started getting sick. I am now recovering, and I can honestly say that my best moments are right after a yoga class. I am looking forward to a week of focusing on our immune system and the second chakra!

September Women's Circle

I am looking forward to this week's Women's Circle on Wednesday, September 21, International Peace Day! We will be joining many across the world in a healing meditation, and then we will be creating our own healing mandalas, which incorporate the chakras. We are reminded that we are peaceful people, and like the ripple of a wave, we send peace out to those we touch.

October Women's Circle

Our WEDNESDAY, October 5 Women's Circle (NOTE: date has changed) is all about detoxing the body in preparation for the long winter! Be prepared to get lots of ideas on how to detox our bodies. we will even practice a few ideas in the circle! Class time is 6:00-7:30PM.

Namaste, Jill

September 11, 2011

Hello Yogis!

I'm back from our wonderful trip to the UK, and you can't even imagine how much I missed you and yoga! About four days into the trip, after so much walking, I knew I needed to stretch out my leg muscles as well as ease the tightness of carrying my shoulder bag all day. As I came to my yoga practice, I actually started crying. It felt so good to be listening to my body and gently stretching out all my muscles. For those of you who only practice once a week, I don't know how you can go that long between classes! My body was aching for yoga after just a few days. :)

I'd like to welcome our newcomers to yoga! For your information, you'll want to bring a yoga mat and water bottle to class. You'll want to wear snug-fitting clothes that won't move much when you bring your head below your heart, like when going into downward facing dog. For more information about the type of class I offer, please check out my website at http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/maynov09newsletters.htm .

This session, we will be focusing on the seven major chakras of the body. Our chakras are energy vortices or wheels of energy in our body. When I say energy, I refer to the energy we feel when someone comes up behind us and we feel their presence before we actually see or hear them. Another example is when we hold our hands away from each other and then gradually move them closer together. As they come closer together, we start to feel a warmth between them. This is energy, and science has confirmed that we do indeed sense our own energy and the energy of others.

Chakra is a Sanskrit term from an Indian language which is no longer used other than in yoga. It can refer to the energy of the body, mind, or spirit. In class, we mostly reference the body energy. This week's attention will be drawn toward the Base, or root, chakra. This chakra is related to instinct, security, survival and also to basic human potentiality. It is our connection to the Earth, and our "fight or flight" nature comes from the Base chakra. While going into our yoga poses this week, particularly the standing poses, we will remind ourselves to stay grounded and balanced.

I look forward to seeing familiar faces and connecting with new faces this week!

Until we meet on the mats,

Namaste (the peace in me recognizes the peace in you!)

August 21, 2011

 Summer Round-up!

Can you believe it? This is our last week of Summer Outdoor Yoga!! But not to worry: it is NOT the last week of summer, and the rumor is that we have a few hot days ahead of us this week!

I have enjoyed spending the summer with each of you! Through the heat and the rain and the bugs, we survived the summer of 2011. We were IN IT!! For at least one hour a week, we spent time noticing the weather, feeling the weather, breathing in the weather. It is all good, isn’t it? J

I invite you all to continue your yoga journey with me this fall. If you have not already signed up, there is still room in my Thursday evening class, and the morning classes have LOTS of room! I am seeing if there is enough interest to run a Friday afternoon class at 1:30. Let me know if that works for you! As always, I try to suit YOUR needs for yoga. I always appreciate your feedback.

For more information on class days and times, please check out my website at http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/classesandrates.htm .


Yoga Bags!

This week, I received two more yoga bags for you to check out! These yoga bags are unique. The closest thing we have found to this style costs three times what we are charging! The bags are machine washable and mats, water bottles, clothes, blocks, books, keys, IPODs, phones, you name it, fit into these spacious bags!

The bags make great gifts for yoginis. Hint hint, tell your husbands and families you have a great Christmas present idea!! And if you are encouraging a family member or good friend to begin their yoga journey, what a nice way to present them with a yoga starter kit: bag, mat, block, strap, CD, etc. The possibilities are endless!

You can check out my website for pictures of most of the bags, but as I said, more have arrived so inquire if you are interested in seeing them. http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/apps/links/


Jill’s Blogs

For those of you wanting more than a yoga experience, check out my blogs. Once a week or so, I am updating the blogs with information regarding our spiritual and mental growth and the spiritual growth of the planet. As with blogs, these are my thoughts, and I love when I find synchronicities occurring with others or with a more scientific base. I have learned that intuition and intentions are very powerful, and we can no longer ignore those messages we receive, as I believe they are divinely inspired. I always feel vulnerable as I expose my thoughts to the world like this, but I feel that my sharing these experiences might help others to open up to their own. This is all about empowering each and every one of you on your own Spiritual journeys! http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/apps/blog/


Women’s Circle

We have an awesome Circle planned for September 21st, which is International Peace Day and precedes the fall equinox on September 23rd. We will begin with a healing meditation, followed by an art project! We are making our own personal mandalas, inspired through our meditation. Because I need to order supplies, I would greatly love you to RSVP by September 9th. Cost is $25 because of the supplies we will be using to create our personal mandalas! http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/womenscircles.htm


October Saturday Yoga Class

Our Saturday, October 1 Yoga Class runs from 8:30 – 10:00 AM. The focus for the class is to work with our breathing as a healing tool. Our 3-part yoga breathing offers so much healing for each of us. From the intake of the breath through our nostrils to filter the oxygen, to the outtake of the breath through our nostrils as we release toxins from our bodies. This is not just yoga talk. Scientific evidence supports the change that occurs in the cellular level as we breathe in oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide. Both western medicine and eastern medicine include breathing as part of the healing process. So the more we know and understand how to control our breathing as well as breathe into certain areas of our body, the more we can work towards healing ourselves! It’s all good!

March Retreat?

Anyone interested in joining me for a yoga retreat this winter? I am speaking with a retreat residence about hosting a yoga and meditation retreat in San Miguel, Mexico the last week in March. Pencil it in on your calendars! Begin and end our days with yoga and meditation, take tours of pyramids and hot springs, schedule a massage, and we’ll also hold a couple Circles and workshops! San Miguel holds the same energy as Sedona and is located near Mexico City. I hope we can get a group of ten or more people to attend! We can bring the cost down with a bigger group. More information to come!

Namaste (the peace in me recognizes the peace in you),


August 14, 2011

Hello! It's hard to believe that we are having that discussion about the Fall Classes being offered at the home studio! But with just two weeks left for the Summer Outdoor Yoga, and my little hiatus to London and Edinburgh following that, now is the time to plan ahead!

Our Early Fall Schedule will be 8 weeks long, starting the week of September 12th and running through the week of October 31st. Yoga Class offerings are:
Fall Yoga Classes

Regular Yoga Class
8 week session will focus on basic yoga poses and flowing series. Our attention will be on our breathing and finding alignment in our poses. Different pose options will be offered so each participant fully experience the poses in a way that suits our individual body needs. We will work with 2-4 sets of Sun Salutations in class.

Tuesday and Thursday Mornings at 8:15-9:15AM
Tuesday and Thursday Evenings at 6:00-7:00PM
Friday Afternoons at 1:30-2:30PM

Advanced Yoga Class

This 8 week session  is designed for the yogi who has been practicing for awhile and is comfortable taking their yoga experience to the next level. We will add more intensity to the poses, and we will begin to work toward more challenging poses that require balance, like crow, handstand, and headstand. All of these are works in progress, so the focus is on working TOWARD achieving these poses. We will have fun as we explore these more traditional expressions of yoga. As always, safety and readiness for the poses will be our number one priority. Unlike Beginner Yoga, I will be providing physical adjustments throughout class. This class is limited to no more than 6 participants because of the level of support I will be providing.

Tuesday Evenings at 7:15-8:30PM

Cost is $70 for one class a week. $135 if you sign up for two classes a week. $195 if you sign up for three classes a week. Because we will be moving indoors when the weather changes, I can only accommodate up to 10 participants in the Regular Yoga classes. Please sign up right away to ensure you get into the classes you'd like to attend!


October Saturday Healing Yoga Class

Saturday, October 1, 2011

8:30 - 10:00AM

This regular yoga class will focus on using our breathing as a healing tool, and attention will be paid toward our own personal areas for healing, as well as sending healing out to the rest of the planet. The class will end with a healing meditation.

You must pre-register for the class. $10 per person.


September Women's Circle



The September Women's Circle will occur on International Peace Day: Wednesday, September 21st at 6:15PM. We will begin the Circle with an Andanda Mandala meditation to clear our chakras, and then we will be creating our own personal mandalas using glass tiles of all the colors of the rainbow/ chakras. Our intentions will be to remind ourselves that we are peaceful beings. The mandalas we create can be used for taking healing into any of the chakra areas we need balancing.

$25 includes supplies for making the mandalas

August 7, 2011

Hello Yogis!

Can you believe that we are into our last month of Outdoor Yoga? But don't panic, there are still three weeks left of the Outdoor Classes, and Eden Prairie, it looks like we are also going to be covered through the last week of August! I will be gone the weeks of August 29 and September 5, and then we will be back in action, with the Home Studio and Eden Prairie classes starting the week of September 12, and the schools should get started shortly after that. School staff, make sure you start getting people interested in yoga classes right away as you get back in the buildings! I anticipate only having Mondays and Wednesdays available for schools this year.

Onto our pose for this week!

Child's Pose

Last week, we took a look at Downward Facing Dog, and many of you received adjustments while in the pose. This week, we will look at that other resting pose, Child's Pose.

Like Downdog, Child's Pose can be a resting pose, but it also is an inversion, meaning the head comes below the heart. The following are some of the uses or health benefits of inverted yoga poses like Child's Pose.
  • One of the most important benefit of inverted yoga is that it helps in improving blood circulation. When the head comes below the heart, the heart pumps blood more vigorously which leads to increase of oxygen supply to the brain. Therefore, there is a proper blood circulation to all parts of the body. This helps in treatment and prevention of diseases caused due to poor blood circulation.
  • With an increased flow of blood in the brain due to Child's Pose, there is a calming effect which can help in reducing stress. This can also treat the irritation caused due to hormonal changes.
  • Along with blood circulation, the flow of internal fluids is also stimulated due to the upside down position. This helps in cleansing and detoxifying the body.
  • One of the other important benefits of yoga inversions is that it helps in clearing off the lactic acid built up in the body. Due to the inverted position, the lactic acid gets flushed out, which helps in treating muscles cramps and pain.


Physically, Child's Pose gently stretches the hips, thighs, and ankles, and relieves back and neck pain when done with head and torso supported.

In Child's Pose, we often focus on our breathing. We usually don't breathe consciously and fully into the back of the torso. Child's Pose provides us with an excellent opportunity to do just that. Imagine that each inhalation is "doming" the back torso toward the ceiling, lengthening and widening the spine. Then with each exhalation release the torso a little more deeply into the fold.

To increase the length of the torso, we stretch our arms forward. We might lift our buttocks just slightly away from the heels and reach the arms longer while we draw the shoulder blades down the back. Then without moving the hands, we can sit the buttocks down on the heels again.

Look for a soothing Child's Pose adjustment during class this week!

Until we meet on the mats, Namaste!

July 31, 2011

Coming to the Mat: Downward Facing Dog

Hello Yogis!

It looks like another hot week ahead of us! We are truly able to say: We are part of this summer! Sometimes we have to drag ourselves to an outdoor class in the heat, only to remember that when we come to the mat, a transformation occurs. We soon feel the gentlest breeze, we hear the slightest whisper of the leaves and birds in the trees. We find our eyes searching for wildlife, hoping for a glimpse of a pheasant or hawk, Or, if we are lucky, as the Wednesday morning class was, we can watch two fawn casually eating the fallen apples after the storm the evening before! We never know what we will see, but we are PART of the summer, and so even the cluster of monarch butterflies we observed Thursday night entertain us. We remind ourselves: It is all good!

Sometimes we so impress ourselves with some of the newer poses we learn and play with in class, only to downplay the "standard" poses. This week, we want to take a look at downward facing dog again. It often gets over looked.

The main anatomical focus for downward facing dog is the back. However, downdog benefits us in many more ways! It calms the brain and helps relieve stress and mild depression; it energizes the body; it stretches the shoulders, hamstrings, calves, arches, and hands; it strengthens the arms and legs; it helps relieve the symptoms of menopause; it relieves menstrual discomfort when done with head supported; it helps prevent osteoporosis; it improves digestion; it relieves headache, insomnia, back pain, and fatigue; and it is therapeutic for high blood pressure, asthma, flat feet, sciatica, sinusitis!

Downward facing dog elongates and lengthens the back. Think about how important this is for an office worker who is hunched over at a desk all day or a teacher who is hunched over a student in a constant forward bend all day. Downdog benefits all immensely by stretching and lengthening the back shoulders and front body. Additionally, downward facing dog is a mild inversion since the head is lower than the hips, and inversions are great for increasing blood flow to the brain and eyes. And because it stimulates the nervous system, it also helps with memory and concentration. This pose is essential for assessing postural needs and imbalances. It is an important habit for yogis to check themselves frequently for problems. This pose is a gentle way to open the hamstrings, stretch shoulders, and keep wrists strong and supple. Finally, the pose helps to stretch toes, calves and arches, and feet.

Downward facing dog is done many times during most yoga classes. It is a transitional pose, a resting pose and a great strengthener in its own right. In the Downward Facing Dog Pose, we build up strength in the upper arms and give space and opening in the back, neck, chest, hips and shoulders. Many people experience the Downward Facing Dog Pose as a moment of rest between difficult Yoga exercises. However, when we are doing this, try to remain focused, both physically and mentally, and continue working out the technique further to get the maximum benefit from this exercise and from Yoga in general.

Downward facing dog can be painful if we are experiencing carpel tunnel syndrome, so ask me about modifications if your hands bother you in the pose. We may also want to avoid it if we have a headache. Just listen to our body, and find child's pose instead. The same is true if we suffer from high blood pressure and find downdog difficult.

In yoga, we want each pose to count, even the most basic of poses like downward facing dog. Remember, it is all good!


Reminder: Women's Circle tomorrow, Monday, August 1st! Learn more about acupuncture and acupressure with our guest presenter, Joyce Yang, La.C MSOM. 6:00 - 7:30PM.


FALL Yoga Class Scheduling

I am currently planning the fall schedule. The next session will run for 8 weeks. It begins the week of September 12th and runs through the week of October 31st. I would love your feedback for class days and times. I don't think I will be able to maintain the three days a week mornings once the teachers go back to school, but I am thinking about bringing back the Friday afternoon class at 1:30! Morning people, do we want to stick with Monday and Wednesday, or switch back to Tuesday and Thursday mornings? Do we want an advanced class in the morning again? Times that work for your schedules??

Evening people, I will continue to run two classes on Tuesday night, with the Advanced Yoga class following the Regular Yoga class. Thursday evening will continue to be a Regular Yoga class. Times will go back to 6:00 - 7:00 and 7:15 -8:30 for the Advanced Yoga class on Tuesday. I am adding 15 minutes to the Advanced Yoga class because we never finished at 8:15. :)

Women's Circles will usually be the first Monday of the month, but I am going to change that up in September by holding the class on International Peace Day, Wednesday, September 21st.

In the fall, we will be bringing back our once a month Saturday morning classes. Dates to come soon.

Now is a great time to let me know of your wishes for the classes we hold at Jill Sand Consulting! Please offer your feedback and suggestions for future classes! 

July 24, 2011

It's a Beautiful Day!

I still have that song (It's a Beautiful Day) playing in my head, after last night's performance by U2! In outdoor yoga, we always take each summer day as it presents itself. We have had intense heat with very little breeze, and we have had sprinkles. Always, we remind ourselves: this is summer! And we store the day and the class in our memories, to be cherished during the coldest winter months. So last night was no different, at the concert. It poured on us. I mean, literally poured. We were so wet, our fingers were shriveled, like after a super-long soak in a tub! And yet, we were IN THE MOMENT! A summer concert, Bono singing "Singing in the Rain" and "Purple Rain," and "Raindrops Keep Falling on my Head!" It was all good, and he knew, as did the audience. No one left the concert. We all stuck around, through three encores. Just Minnesotans, enjoying an evening summer rain. Just this!

And so this week, in our yoga practice, I remind you: Just this! Be in the moment! It sounds like we have a wonderful weather week ahead of us, and so it will be easy to enjoy it.


I am so excited to announce that the yoga bags we have been designing exclusively for YOUR yoga needs are now available for sale! Mary has been busy sewing them and finding fun new patterns for you! These bags hold: one yoga mat; two water bottles; two pockets for keys, glasses, IPODs, and phones; blocks, belts, and other yoga paraphernalia, including a change of clothes! You won't find a bag similar to these at our very low rate of $75. The competition starts at over $200.

100_0222.JPG   100_0208.JPG

For more information, check out my website at http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/apps/photos/album?albumid=11941478

August 1 Women's Circle - Acupuncture Health Benefits
6:00 - 7:30 PM
As a natural therapy of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) acupuncture has been practiced continuously as a health care modality for over 3000 yrs. By applying needling stimulation to acupuncture points on the body, acupuncture works to regulate the flow of body’s vital energy called Qi, strengthen internal organs’
functions, and restore both physical and emotional overall health and balance. It is recognized by NIH and WHO as an effective treatment for a wide variety of conditions,such as pain disorders, allergy, digestive problems, women’s issues, anxiety and depression.

Come to this class and learn how acupuncture works and what health benefits you can have from acupuncture.

The class will also include hands-on practicing of finding some acupuncture points on your body and learn their therapeutic properties.  Learn ways to do acu-pressure (applying pressure to stimulate acupuncture points) on them to help promote health and prevent illness.

The talk will be given by Xianhui Joyce Yang, L.Ac, MSOM. http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/womenscircles.htm

See you on the mats!


July 17, 2011

Hot Yoga?

Wasn't it just three weeks ago we were wondering when summer would arrive? Now it feels like the dog days of summer! Ahh, but we want to enjoy even these hot days, knowing that cool days arrive sooner than we wish!

It is important that we take care of ourselves in the heat, and especially so, when we practice yoga in the heat. This week, I've pulled together some sage advice for surviving (and enjoying!) the heat.

As we move into 100 degree temperatures with a heat index around 110, we want to replenish our bodies with lots of water. Excessive sweating can result in dehydration, a condition that sets the stage for heat-related health problems, such as heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and even heatstroke. Therefore, one or two water bottles during class is essential. If you forgot your water bottle, no problem! Just let me know and I will get water for you! And don't forget to drink water before AND after class!

Acclimating your body to the weather is very helpful, so on these hot days, you might want to arrive a few minutes early just to sit and let your body get used to the temperature. And if you feel overheated, or your heart rate is super fast, just take a break in child's pose or, if your body is feeling stressed, pull up to a tree and put your feet up.

Sweating is the body's primary defense against overheating, and bare skin allows your body to release heat more easily. The fewer clothes, the better, and lighter colors vs. darker will keep you feeling cooler.

As always, we listen to our bodies. The first symptom of heat exhaustion is a pulse rate that rockets and stays elevated. Dizziness, headache, nausea, confusion, vomiting, cramps, fatigue, weakness, and vision disturbances are cause for immediate concern. Also, beware decreased sweating—a sign of serious dehydration. If you experience any of the above symptoms, act immediately. Find the coolest area ( the shade of a tree, or head into the house!) and lie down on your back. If you feel like you might pass out before getting out of the sun, lie down on your mat. Elevate your legs on a tree. Apply a wet cloth to your skin and drink plenty of cold water. If the symptoms persist, seek medical attention.

In class this week, we'll be following a yin yoga format, which means we will spend more time in holding poses with less movement.  We will practice moon salutations, which are more cooling that heat producing. 

I look forward to seeing you on the mat!


July 10, 2011

Opening Our Hip Flexors

In class we talk about opening our hip flexors.  Which are the hip flexor muscles?Here is an anatomical view of the hip flexor muscles.

The hip flexors are a group of muscles that flex the hip. There are quite a few muscles that actually flex the hip, but two that are specifically referred to as hip flexors. The Illiopsoas group consists of the Psoas and the Iliacus. Both muscles attach to the femur. The Psoas attaches to the lower back, and the Iliacus attaches to your hipbone. Sitting down puts these muscles in a shortened position, and as a result leaves them pretty tight. The Psoas attaches to the lower back, if it’s tight, it can pull your back forward, and is a common cause of back pain.

In our daily life, we are quite sedentary by nature. Many of us spend a significant part of our day seated. And for those of us who stand a lot for work, we find ourselves leaning forward, allowing a slight bend at the hip. Why do we do this? Because those hip flexors want to tighten, thus shortening the muscles.

Most problems with the hip flexors, however, don't originate in a lack of strength but in a lack of flexibility. If the Iliopsoas and other hip flexors are tight, they pull down and forward on the pelvis, which tilts the pelvis forward and compresses the lower back. Picture a man standing with the front of his pelvis tilting forward and his tailbone lifting. To stand upright, he has to overarch his lower back. Anatomically, this is called hyperextension; commonly, it's called "swayback." Prolonged standing or sitting in this position increases pressure on the facet joints of the lower spine, which can contribute to arthritis in those joints. (Yogajournal.com)

In class, we stretch the hip flexors through poses like Lunge,Bridge, Pigeon, Incline Plank and Dancer. We might encourage the muscles to stretch by focusing on the hip flexors during Tree Pose.

We strengthen the hip flexor muscles in poses like Boat because it demands that the Iliopsoas muscle isometrically contracts to hold up the weight of the legs and torso.

I look forward to helping you strengthen and stretch your hip flexors this week!


REMINDER: This Saturday, July 16, is our Day of Peace Yoga and Meditation Retreat Day! I'll begin the day with a 90 minute heart-opening yoga class, followed by an hour of silent meditation. Mhdlon is assisting us in preparing an Eastern Indian lunch, followed by another hour long meditation. We are bringing in a guest yoga teacher, Lauren, to lead us in a 75 minute Kundalini class. Afterward, Brenda will join us to speak with our angels and guides, asking them for information on how WE can be an instrument of Peace in our world.

You are welcome to stay for all or part of the day. Please let me know which sessions you will be attending BY WEDNESDAY, JULY 13. We need a firm headcount for the food and attendance with the guests we are bringing in.

A Day of Peace

Yoga and Meditation Retreat

8:30 – 10:00            Yoga class

10:15 – 11:15          Quiet Meditation on the Grounds

11:30 – 1:00            Lunch – Indian food with Mhdlon

1:00 – 2:00              Quiet Meditation on the Grounds

2:15 – 3:30              Kundalini Yoga class with Lauren

3:30 – 4:30              Peace Messages from the Angels, Guides, and Ancestors with Brenda


Session 1: 8:30 – 1:00     $35

Session 2: 11:30 – 3:30     $35

Session 3: 3:30 – 4:30     $15

Combine Sessions 1 and 2: $60

Combine Sessions 1, 2 and 3: $65

July 4 - Happy Independence Day!

Open Our Hearts to Peace

I wish each of you a very beautiful day of being with family and friends. Get out there and BE part of the summer (but don't forget the bug spray - the mosquitoes have caught up with us!)

As many of you are aware, I am working on a big project I've named Women for Peace. This project is in its infancy, as we've only had one meeting this far. (See  meeting notes here: http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/apps/forums/topics/show/5069177-june-21-2011-organizational-meeting). The group will get a big kickoff in the fall. September 21st is International Peace Day, and I think we'll be scheduling an event for that day. Please contact me if there is a rally or event that is going on that day which we can be part of, or if you have a fresh idea, we'd love to hear from you! All are invited to join this movement, and yes, it is a movement. 

Yoga is a great place for me to practice peace. In fact, you are the ones who inspired this peace movement. Our classes at Jill Sand Consulting are mostly women, and yoga is a time when we seek peace in our Hearts. But yoga does more than help us find peace. It also empowers us, which can inspire us to bring peace into our own little corner of the world.

Recently, I came across an article (Rising up: Women empowered by yoga lead the change they want to see in the world, Yoga Journal, June 2011) that really spoke to me about who WE are. Mahatma Gandhi was the one who said we are to be the change we want to see in the world. It's very empowering for us as women to reflect on how the determination of one impassioned person can shift the possibilities for our whole society. Look at the women in our world who have brought about changes in the world: Sandra Day O'Connor, Mother Theresa, Hillary Clinton, Condoleezza Rice, Oprah, and we know of so many others who have been leaders of change. Young women today are so fortunate to have women like these who have literally paved the way for them to be empowered in this world.

Yoga empowers us to be peace leaders even in this crazy world for which we find ourselves in. Yoga reminds us to be present in the moment. In yoga we learn the value of honesty, mutual support, and a dedication to clarity that translates into action. In yoga, we see the value of dedicating ourselves to service and a healthier world, a world that takes place in our own Heart.

This week in yoga, we will open our Hearts to peace through chest expansion poses.

Dancer's Pose


Reminder: A Day of Peace: Yoga and Meditation Retreat will be held on Saturday, July 16. Please RSVP by July 13.



(The peace in me recognizes the peace in you)

June 26, 2011

Yoga Breathing

Whenever I start a new session of classes, a few new yoginis join us. I am pleased to welcome seven new people to my home outdoor yoga classes this summer, and the Eden Prairie classes added 9 new people! As always, I am ever so grateful that you choose to practice yoga with me. If you have any questions about your practice, please be sure to ask before or after class. (I don't mind if you ask during class, especially if something is feeling very uncomfortable!) Also, if you have health issues that you are healing, please let me know. I want to make sure we give you the best yoga practice at the level that is right for you and your healing.

In class, you'll notice the attention I pay to our breathing. At it's essence, yoga is all about the breath. In fact, in the earliest days of yoga, one would find one pose and stay in it, practicing breathing to bring themselves into a deep meditation. Only during the 20th Century, did yoga become pose-oriented.And today, especially in the United States, you will often find a practice that has no meditation time involved. During our summer outdoor yoga class, we infuse 15 minutes of meditation time into the end of our extended class. Unfortunately we just get a few minutes of meditation time in our hour long classes, but even 3-5 minutes of quiet time is more than most of us get during our busy lives.

Yoga breathing is very different than our "regular" breathing. Most of us aren't even aware that we use only our top lungs for regular breathing. Just stop reading right now and notice your breath. In takes place in the chest, right? That is the top of your lungs.

In yoga breathing, we begin the breath in our tummies, the lowest part of our lungs, and we slowly work that breath up into the chest. Believe me, it's easier said than done! In class, I offer suggestions for working with the breath. I also have put together a very amateurish video on breathing at my website. You can view it here.

Again, VERY amateurish, LOL. But hopefully helpful.

The benefits from our yoga breathing include: calming the nervous system, increasing our lung capacity for breath, and strengthening the muscles that support the lungs, including the deepest levels of our abdominal muscles that are often not worked with in any other fitness practice. Women, our yoga exhale will strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, which is beneficial for those who are pre-pregnancy, post-pregnancy, and menipausal. In other words, we ALL need that!

Find ten minutes during your day/ week to practice your yoga breath. Bring some calm into your life!


Save the Date!!

On Saturday, July 16, Jill Sand Consulting is offering our 3rd yoga retreat, entitled A Day of Peace: Yoga and Meditation Retreat. I have broken the day into 3 sessions, and you will be welcome to attend one or all! The morning session of yoga and mediation will conclude with sharing a traditional East Indian meal guided by Mhdlon Madcap. The afternoon session begins with this lunch and includes a Kundalini Yoga class taught by Lauren Drilling as well as meditation time. The third session for the day brings in guest speaker and intuitive channeler, Brenda Vizenor. I have asked Brenda to bring in our angels, guides, and ancestors to help us learn from those Blessed Spirits how we can bring peace into our lives, families, communities and world. When I contacted her, she said they had been waiting for me to invite them since last January. No surprise, as that was the time I decided that 2011 was going to be a year of focusing on Peace. 

More information will be coming out this week. 

Offering you peace in your Heart,


June 19, 2011

Hello Yoginis!

What is with this weather?! The only thing I can figure is that our spring is being prolonged, since we had a late start to it. Just waiting for that sun and heat to take over. But until then, we can create our own heat through our yoga practice

This email addresses how yoga can benefit our hormones, no matter what age we are!

Each class, I get the chance to look out at each of you, and it reminds me how Blessed we are, sharing yoga together. You guys don't even realize how beautiful you look doing yoga. Even though we are all different sizes, different ages, and at different yoga learning stages, we all look beautiful as we have our own yoga experience.

So what separates our experiences in yoga from men's experiences? Well, mostly our body. We all know that our physical bodies are built much differently than men's, but we are different ON THE INSIDE as well. And this is due in large part because of our hormones. We tend to complain about our hormones (heavy periods, hot flashes, night sweats, etc), but we can also look at our hormones as providing us the power to give life, and later in life, to come into our wisdom. So perhaps, just for today, we can look at our hormones as a good thing. As something that makes us powerful and strong.

How do the hormones affect our yoga experience? Well, we should be able to do everything either with our period or without it, including that transition time to menopause and beyond. Unless you experience extreme hemorrhaging with your period, at which time you would refrain from letting your head get below the heart, yoga should not be harmful for you. In fact, it can provide many benefits, which I'll explain next.

Studies have found that inversions are the most beneficial poses for peri-menopausal and menopausal women. These poses are the ones in which we bring the head lower than the heart. Inversions benefit the glands of the endocrine systems that produce the hormones that regulate many body processes. Inverted poses reduce pelvic congestion. Shoulder stand and plow (which we modify for safety) are an effective remedy for hot flashes. In fact, shoulder stands are thought to be the best pose for correcting imbalances in the female reproductive system.  Inversion cleanse the immune system and calm the nervous system.

Our forward bends (like forward folds) compress the abdominals, massage the uterus and other organs in the lower torso. These forward folds also help regulate body temperature.

Chest expansions like bridge, bow and camel help regulate the peri-menopausal cycle. When we open the pelvis in those poses, the adrenal glands become activated and produce estrogen. Backbends (we do modified versions which produce the same effect) stimulate the ovaries and fallopian tubes, creating healthy blood flow and rejuvenation.

Twists improve the functioning of the adrenals, increasing the amount of estrogen in the body. They stimulate the kidneys, providing a healthy boost for the elimination of metabolic wastes. They also help prevent and relieve lower back pain, cramps and indigestion.

So the next time we are enjoying our outdoor yoga experience, enjoying the feel of the breeze moving through us, enjoying the feel of our body being challenged and moving into wonderful stretches, remember that the benefits that we are producing go much further than what meets the eye!

June 9, 2011

 Hello Yoginis, and welcome to Summer Outdoor Yoga at my home studio! I am looking forward to spending 11 wonderful weeks of summer with you! I can’t believe this is our third summer yoga series.

For those of you new to Jill Sand Consulting yoga classes, this is a head’s up that you will be receiving weekly emails from me on pose corrections and general yoga information. I strongly believe in practicing yoga safely, and these emails are ways to improve your individual yoga practice.

This first email is more informational, and I will also provide some links to my website for more information.


So what do you need to bring to Outdoor Yoga?

  • Yoga mat
  • Water


  • Blanket for underneath the mat (buffer between you and the     grass/bugs)
  • Blanket/sheet for on top of your body (optional, good for cooler days and for the hot days)
  • Bug spray/mosquito repellent (we have found dryer sheets work well)

New yoginis will want to arrive at the first class a few minutes earlier to sign the release waiver.


What about the weather?

Since this is an outdoor class, we WILL be outdoors, so dress in layers, especially if it is a cooler or hotter day. We held a yoga class outdoors in the 102F temperature this week, and it was wonderful, as we had a beautiful breeze! We all agreed that it was not bad at all. Of course, I design the class around the temperature for weather extremes. Because of our class sizes, I cannot always guarantee an indoor class on rainy days. I can fit a group of 14 in my yoga studio, if we are snuggly. So it will be up to you, if you decide to come to class when there is a chance of rain.

If you are unable to make the class you signed up for, feel free to attend another class as a make-up. Just send me an email so I can figure another person at that class.

Some of you might be asking, just exactly what kind of yoga will we do? Here is a link to my website, explaining our yoga practice: http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/maynov09newsletters.htm The first two newsletters offer a great description of our yoga classes. I suggest you take a couple minutes to read through it.

If you are not familiar with where I live, this link offers directions: http://jillsandconsulting.webs.com/aboutjsc.htm If you have further questions, just ask!

I think that covers the most pressing issues! I look forward to seeing you on the mat!

June 5, 2011

Last Week of Spring Classes ~ Welcome Summer!!

We have finally turned the corner on spring, and summer has arrived, just in the nick of time for most of us! I wasn't sure how many more gloomy, cool days I could handle in a row. Now we get to complain that we have to water our plants more frequently! We have to remind ourselves to enjoy the heat, as it lasts only so long.

NOTE: If the weather is summer-like (not raining), expect to be outdoors this week. Dress in layers, as the end of classes temperatures may differ from the start of class. Bring a blanket for under your mat, and maybe a blanket or sheet to cover with at the end of class. Sunscreen and bug spray would be a great idea, and bring water! (Advanced class will still be inside this week.)

So as we complete this session of yoga, I thank you once more for all the Blessings you have provided me. Yoga is not a business that you get rich in, nor is it one that a person could live on one income with, but I have been so fortunate to be able to do this for a living, and the fact that you show up each week just makes my Heart sing! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

As I've shared with many of you, I like to have a focus for the summer classes, especially the meditation time at the end of class. This summer's focus will align with the newly developing goals of Jill Sand Consulting: Women for Peace. So expect to have your meditations be filled with peaceful music and peacefully inspired thoughts. And if you want to be more involved in our goal, Women for Peace, please let me know. I hope we can grow a group of peaceful women in our community, in our state, in our country, in our world. Like the pebble that ripples the wake of the water as it skips across it, every little action we take affects EVERYTHING around us! Let's start the peace ripple this summer!

See you on the mat!

May 30, 2011

Hello Amazing Woman~

This was a sad week for our family. Two women we know passed from cancer, another woman from a brain aneurysm, and another young woman overdosed. All in the prime of their lives.  The common link for me is that they were all women.

My mission at Jill Sand Consulting is defined on my home page: My mission is to provide you with wellness opportunities for your body, mind, and Spirit. Whether you take a class with me or you visit me online, I hope to provide opportunities for you to learn and grow on your journey through life!

Most of you know me as a yoga teacher, but at Jill Sand Consulting, I offer much more than that.  We are a Women’s Wellness Consulting hub. Either on my own, or with the assistance of guest speakers, I try to offer women a supportive environment that helps us journey through our many ups and downs in life. Part of this effort is to surround ourselves with other women who can be supportive and caring, nurturing our needs. I also facilitate bringing information to our groups to help in this process.

This summer, I am building the wellness portion of my mission by offering new opportunities for us to grow and learn how to improve our lives.

My main goal for the summer is to start a non-profit group named Women for Peace. I envision this group bringing peace into our own lives, the lives of our friends and families, the lives of our communities, and the lives of people all over our world. I am looking for other dedicated women who are also called to this project. If you have any non-profit experience, especially from a legal perspective, I’d love to include you in these uncharted territories. An informational/ brainstorming session will take place on the Summer Solstice, Tuesday, June 21st, at 7:45 PM, following the Outdoor Yoga class.

Beginning on Tuesday, June 14, and running through the summer, JSC will offer free meditation sessions with our Peace Garden Meditation. Requirements include an ability to listen to our Hearts, garden gloves, and a bit of an appetite. Meditation can be difficult for some people, but when we busy our hands, we can slow down our minds, allowing thoughts of inspiration to come to us, perhaps shaping the direction of our next adventure in life! We will spend an hour in silent meditation while we garden, followed by a light lunch and a shared discussion about the wonderful thoughts that entered our Hearts while we worked. The garden host is responsible for a light lunch for all attendees, so an RSVP is necessary. I will be the first garden host, and will host any sessions that are not filled by others. So if you are interested in meditating while working with your hands, or  if you are looking for an opportunity to get your gardens cleaned in the company of Spirited women, this opportunity is for you! I am starting this with the morning group, but if you are part of the daytime work world and are interested in the Peace Garden Meditation, let me know. We can look at adding evening or weekend meditations as well.

Finally I have been encouraged by several of you to facilitate another Women’s Retreat, The date has been set for Saturday, July 16, but I am still waiting on divine guidance for the purpose of this retreat. If you have had some ideas in your head for a retreat (“I wish that there was a retreat for …”), please let me know. Perhaps your ideas and my ideas are meant to come together!

I hope to see you this summer!

May 30, 2011

 IMPORTANT NOTICE for those who attend yoga classes at my home studio: Construction will begin on our driveway near the house this week. Therefore, please plan to park your vehicle on either side of the long drive. To keep the flow, if you park on the right, your car will point toward the house, and if you park on the left, turn your vehicle around to face the road. You can pull as close to the house as the curve in the drive. I apologize for this inconvenience!

It's hard to believe we are still discussing allergies, but we can be thankful for the yoga in our lives to help us through our discomfort and provide more energy for us! I found this great article on yoga and allergies and wanted to pass it along to you!

According to the ancient science of Ayurveda, allergies are aggravated by the build-up of excess toxins (ama) in the body. By gently massaging, stretching, and stimulating the internal organs, yoga asanas effectively help eliminate unwanted wastes and toxins. Yoga postures also improve digestion, enabling you to absorb full nutrition from your food, which in turn creates less waste. Best of all, yoga helps naturally increase your desire for the delicious, vibrant foods that both cleanse and nourish your body.

Yoga asanas also help balance and tone the nervous system, promoting a wonderful relaxation effect in the body, including:

  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Slower pulse
  • Deep, even breathing
  • Reduction of stress hormones
  • Increase in “feel good” endorphins

We know that stress drains and weakens the immune system, while practicing yoga asanas has the opposite effect. Yoga builds and strengthens your immune system, making your body less likely to react to everyday allergens.

Source: http://www.wailana.com/yoga/newsletter/spring-back-from-allergies-with-yoga.php

May 15, 2011

Finding Length In Our Side Bodies

Many of us suffer from stiffness in our legs, especially inside the thigh and inner knee area, as well as our lower backs. Side stretches are a great way to relieve that stiffness by lengthening the muscles between the ribs and pelvis, including the low back. Side stretches also improve rib cage mobility and expansion of the lungs, making breathing easier.

This week, we will work with some side stretching poses that include:

Reclining Big Toe Pose

Extended Hand to Big Toe Pose

Gate Pose

Revolved Head to the Knee Pose

Until we meet on the mats!


May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day, and please check out the new Summer Outdoor Yoga Schedule in the tab "Classes and Rates" to your right.

You can "Like" me at my Facebook page, Jill Sand Consulting !



May 1, 2011

Greetings Yoginis and Happy May Day!

Although it doesn't feel like May today, we are moving toward more beautiful days. Even an hour of sunshine feels so warm and wonderful, and the rains truly have stimulated the growth of lush lawns and flowers just ready to burst! It's all good!

This past week we spent time opening our hearts in class. The tragedies in the South, as well as our own desire for warmer days, has sent some of us into a slump, and heart opening is the perfect way to bring balance into our lives. We will continue to work with the heart through our breathing this week. 

I've been enjoying pulling together information on this Monday's Women's Circle on the topic Ayurveda 30-Day Challenge. (There is still room for more attendees. Please let me know ASAP if you'd like to join us!) Ayurveda involves wellness and balance of the body, mind, and Spirit, so expect some information in our yoga classes for how the various poses improve aspects of our health. Those of us who are Vata-dosha dominant mostly enjoy the calming and grounding aspects of yoga.Those of us who are Pitta-dosha dominant enjoy poses that calm but do not overheat the body. And those of us who are Kapha-dosha dominant enjoy the strengthening poses. When we are out of balance, we often need to bring in aspects of the other doshas to balance ourselves out. I look forward to sharing more with you in our practice this week!




 Upcoming Dates at Jill Sand Consulting!


May 2 - Women's Circle on Ayurveda 30-Day Challenge (6:15-7:45 PM)

May 8 - Happy Mother's Day to all of you great Mothers!

May 14 - Saturday Yoga (note - date has been changed)

(8:30-10:00 AM)

June 13 - August 26 Summer Outdoor Yoga Sessions!!!

June 20 - August 22 Summer Sun Salutations Yoga Session!

Summer Women's Circles Guest Series - look for guest speakers throughout the summer!