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Tara Kestner-Next Level Yoga YouTube Channel Free Yoga Videos

Hi there!  Are you looking for some great free yoga videos?  Well, lucky for you that is exactly what you will find on the Tara Kestner YouTube Channel. Follow this link to the home page, or scroll down for some directly links to the most popular videos.

Tara Kestner Next Level Yoga Channel

While you are there PLEASE take the time to hit the little red SUBSCRIBE box.  I promise you it is always absolutely free, it just helps the channel grow in the YouTube platform.  Thanks for checking it out, hope to see you on the mat.  Tara

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Morning Yoga with Essential Oils Video

morning yoga essential oils

Big day ahead? This class will help you wake up and get going with a slow, effective stretch. Essential oils enhance the experience, but if you don’t have them don’t sweat it, this is still a pretty great way to start your day. Absolutely beginner friendly, with modifications for sitting in a chair instead of on the ground.

Essential Oils for a Good Day

We will be using Frankincense for centering, Peppermint for energy and Wild Orange, a little liquid sunshine, to put an all-day smile on your face. You could substitute Sandalwood or Cedarwood for Frankincense, Wintergreen or Eucalyptus for Peppermint; and, Lemon or Grapefruit for Wild Orange.

Try making this class a part of your morning routine a few days a week to reap the benefits of increased energy, lower blood pressure, and an overall better mood. In a word…HAPPINESS!

As always thank you for practicing with me and if you like this class, PLEASE subscribe to the channel so we can spend a little more time together.

Subscribe to the Next Level Yoga Channel Here

Wind Down & Relax- Evening Yoga with Essential Oils Video

Had a long day?  Need some help transitioning to evening or bedtime?  This beginner friendly class is designed to give your day a soft landing.  Essential oils help, but are not absolutely necessary, this class is all about relaxation.  You can start out on the ground or seated in a chair.

Essential Oils for Relaxation

We will be using Bergamot for mood lifting, Marjoram for aches and pains and Lavender to soothe the nervous system. You could substitute Lemon or Orange for Bergamot, Eucalyptus or Peppermint for Marjoram; and, Spikenard or Sandalwood for Lavender.

Make this class a part of your post-work or pre-bedtime routine and reap the benefits of stress reduction, lower blood pressure, pain relief and better sleep. In all, a happier you. As always thank you for practicing with me and if you like this class, please subscribe to the channel so we can spend a little more time together.

See you on the mat, Tara

WAKE UP AND YOGA – Quick Morning Stretch Video

Morning Yoga

We all know yoga is the key to a better day, but it’s hard to find the time. Waking up earlier is a cruel suggestion to someone like me who is not a morning person.  Here is a quick 15-minute class designed to gently wake you up, stretch you out and send you off into the day a happier person.

Yoga Intervals Video Now on YouTube

Looking for a balanced yoga workout?  This Interval Yoga Video works to achieve balance in the pace, intensity and body awareness.  If you’ve got 45-minutes and you want to move and stretch, this might be the best way to spend them.

 

Next Level Yoga presents Interval Yoga

This class is designed to be a perfect balance of flow and slow stretching.  Extra attention is given to body awareness and balancing front/back and inner/outer body strength.  It’s a nice, quick workout, at the same time offers plenty of stretching to help avoid that post workout fatigue.  For those of you who take my live classes, this was the featured class this June.

Thanks so much for checking out my YouTube Channel,  if you like this video, please subscribe to the channel.  I need 1,000 subscribers for the folks at YouTube to take me seriously, I am currently at 43, clearly I am playing the long game 🙂

For more info on some of these classes check out some previous posts here at the blog in Yoga Video Yin Yang Flow and Hips and Hamstrings.

More Yoga Videos from Next Level Yoga on YouTube

Here are some direct links to classes:

Short Soothing Yin Yoga Class by Next Level Yoga

Neck and Shoulder Elixir Yoga Class by Next Level Yoga

Hips and Hamstrings Yoga Class by Next Level Yoga

Yin Yang Flow by Next Level Yoga

Upper Body Stretch and Strengthen

Yoga with Essential Oils Video Now on YouTube

essential oils yoga

You may already know that adding essential oils to your yoga practice can enhance the experience; but, have you ever wondered exactly how to do that?  In this newest video from Next Level Yoga, we incorporate three of the most popular essential oils to the practice. This Yoga with Essential Oils video is the perfect, beginner friendly way to blend the health benefits of essential oils and yoga.

Yoga with Essential Oils Video

Essential oils have a lot of benefits, from inflammation reduction, to mood adjustment to pain management, it seems like there is an oil for most every situation.  For more basic information on using essential oils in your yoga practice, check out this post, Yoga with Essential Oils

This video is a short, very basic class, accessible to all levels of experience. In fact, the majority of the class can be done either in or standing behind a chair, if sitting on the floor is not possible.

The Essential Oils You Will Need and Where to Get Them.

For this class, you will need the three most popular essential oils, lemon, peppermint and lavender. I use DoTerra essential oils and highly recommend them.  However, there are other oils on the market that are also very good.  If you are loyal user of another brand, by all means please use them with this video.

If you don’t know where to purchase these oils, here are some affiliate links to help you find the products you need from the two most popular brands.  I recommend purchasing the DoTerra introductory kit which contains all three of the oils used in this video.

Introductory Kit- Doterra Lemon, Peppermint and Lavender Kit

Lemon Oil links- Doterra 15ml Lemon Oil – Doterra 5ml Lemon Oil  – Young Living 15ml Lemon Oil

Peppermint Oil links- Doterra 5ml Peppermint OilDoterra 15ml Peppermint OilYoung LIving 15ml Peppermint Oil

Lavender Oil links- Doterra 5ml Lavender Oil– Doterra 15ml Lavender Oil– Young Living 5ml Lavender Oil

If you like the video, please subscribe to the channel and let us know your thoughts.  Also, if you have a favorite oil you would like to see incorporated into a class, let us know in the comments.

Yoga with Essential Oils

Incorporating essential oils into your yoga practice is a great way to maximize the benefits of yoga. I know, it can feel a little out there to think that rubbing a drop or two of some plant oil on you is going to have some tangible effect on your body. However, think about this: before we had modern synthetic based drugs, people cured multitudes of maladies with plants alone. Yoga with essential oils is a great way to experience this effect.

Scientists who are way smarter than me, figured out how to mimic those plants’ chemical compounds and created drugs that have profound effects on the body, curing all manners of disease. So I ask, why is it so far-fetched to believe those same plant oils, in their purest forms, would not have the same effect now?  In short, its not, it just takes a little getting used to the idea. To be clear, no-one is suggesting you should forgo all modern medicine for essential oils, that would be irresponsible, but why not give it a try and see if you realize any benefits?

essential oil science

 

The use of essential oils for therapeutic purposes is called aromatherapy. Different oils provide different benefits. Some oils can improve concentration or reduce stress, while others help boost the immune system or improve the quality of sleep. Yoga with essential oils is a great way to start to use oils in your everyday life.

There are many different oils out there, the trick is to find what works for you. That will depend on what you hope to achieve. Here are a few essential oil basics: for enhanced relaxation try lavender, marjoram or ylang ylang. Conversely, for energy try peppermint, rosemary or wild orange. For focus and concentration, try grounding oils like sandalwood, frankincense and cedarwood.

Now to amp up those benefits try yoga with essential oils. Here are a few suggestions on how to do that:

  • essential oil diffuser
  • Use a Diffuser: Diffusing aerosolizes the oil molecules allowing you to breathe in their benefits. The most safest and most effective method is to use a diffuser which you can find either online or at most stores like Bed, Bath & Beyond. You simply add water and a few drops of oil and hit the start button.
  • Topical Application. Basically, you rub a few drops directly on to the skin. Always test for skin sensitivity first, and consider using a carrier oil such as fractionated (fatty acids removed) coconut oil to dilute the oil and cover more of the skin’s surface. Depending on the oil and the desired effect, there are a variety of ways to apply, for instance; rub peppermint on your chest or biceps before sun salutations for an energy boost; for relaxation, massage some lavender into the soles of your feet before final seated and reclined poses, or rub some sandalwood into your hands, cup your hands in front of your face to breath in the scent during the initial breathing exercises at the beginning of class.

essential oils topical use

  • Ingestion. Oils that are safe to ingest, such as lemon, lime and peppermint can be added to your water to sip during and after class. Be sure to confirm the oil you are using is safe for ingestion. Personally, I use doTerra products which carry a supplement label, letting you know they are safe to ingest, unless you see a similar label, do not assume you can ingest the oil.

ingesting essential oils

We will be launching some free Yoga with Essential Oil videos on the Next Level Yoga YouTube Channel soon.  The yoga will be absolutely beginner-friendly and will incorporate three different essential oils at different times during the practice.  Here is a link to our YouTube Channel we would love it if you would take time to subscribe so we can notify you when they are available.

Below are some affiliate links to the three oils you will need for our first video. These links will take you to Amazon where the oils are sold at the retail price.  I have included links to the two most popular brands of essential oil.

Lemon Oil links- Doterra 15ml Lemon Oil – Doterra 5ml Lemon Oil  – Young Living 15ml Lemon Oil

Peppermint Oil links- Doterra 5ml Peppermint OilDoterra 15ml Peppermint OilYoung LIving 15ml Peppermint Oil

Lavender Oil links- Doterra 5ml Lavender Oil– Doterra 15ml Lavender Oil– Young Living 5ml Lavender Oil

Yoga Club Review July 2018

Yoga Club

Yippee! My latest Yoga Club Box has arrived.  As you may remember in my last box, I decided to exchange the bubble gum pink tank top and bondage inspired leggings for something else.  Here is a link to my last Yoga Club review if you need to catch up June 2018 Review

yoga club logo

With Yoga Club you have two options for exchanges, you can post on their Facebook group, or they have a limited selection on their website for you to choose from.  I chose the website route and decided on a cute t-shirt by LA Soul with elephants in a circle, very zen-y, and a pair of crop leggings by Rune in purple.

When I opened the box I found more elephants that I bargained for.  Yoga Club was apparently one step a head of me and for this month’s outfit they sent me this LA Soul t-shirt with an elephant.  That is more elephant based attire than I need in my wardrobe, the leggings, however are awesome.

Also in the bright pink box was these Bali blue capri leggings by Vimmia and a black muscle shirt by The Free Yoga. Both are very cute, but I am not sure they are quite me.  While I really like the leggings, I think the color might be hard to match with anything except white or black.  I have never really been a muscle shirt kinda gal, but this top is so incredibly soft, I am going to give it a go.

Yoga Club side plank
Vimmia Bali legging and The Free Yoga Muscle Shirt

Here are links to the same or similar products if you like what you see.  The tank top in white The Free Yoga Tank  the Vimmia leggings in full-length Vimmia Bali Blue Leggings

Want to give Yoga Club a try? Here are the details on how to get started and save 25%?

Here is how Yoga Club works.

YogaClub is a subscription service,  when you join you will choose a commitment level.  The Mantra (a pair of leggings), the Karma (leggings and a top), and the Guru (leggings, a top and a layering piece). Prices range from $45-$79, and you choose monthly or seasonal shipments.

If you use my referral code, ( Click Here to save on 1st Yoga Club Order ) you will get 25% off your first box.  Full disclosure, I will get “Lotus Bucks” in return, but frankly you need a ton of them to just to get a 10% discount, so if you use someone else’s link I won’t be upset.  But please use a referral code, don’t be a chump like me and pay full price the first time.

When you click through that link, you will take a little style quiz and; yes, you do have to give them your credit card information.  Shortly thereafter you will get a bright pink YogaClub box full of goodies just for you.  It’s like your birthday every month.

 

New Yoga Video- Core Strength and Balance Challenge on YouTube

Core Strength and Balance Next Level Yoga Tara Kestner

Question: What are the two things people tell me they want to work on most?  Answer: Core Strength and Balance.  Question: What are the two things people groan about when we work on them in class?  Answer: Core Strength and Balance.   Interesting….

Next Level Yoga presents Core Strength and Balance Challenge

Summer Porch Yoga Core and Balance Challenge Video

Ready for a challenge? This class combines the two things clients request most, core work and balance. I firmly believe that balance is not improved by standing on one leg, but rather, by challenging the body’s ability to adjust during movements in all planes of motion.

Handily enough, all balance work requires core strength. This class has kneeling core and balance work, a core isolation flow series, then a long-levered balance sequence.

We finish on our backs with a tough and tricky series I call, dead crow progression. Not gonna lie, this one’s a killer.  It may take you a couple times through to get it, but when you master this class, it feels amazing.

You will need a block.; if you don’t have a yoga block a large book like Stephen King’s It or Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows will do, but put a string or rubber band around it so it doesn’t open on you at an inopportune time.

If you like this video, I would be ever so appreciative if would subscribe to my YouTube channel.  I need 1,000 subscribers for the folks at YouTube to take me seriously, I am currently at 17, clearly I am playing the long game 🙂

For more info on some of these classes check out some previous posts Yoga Video Yin Yang Flow and Hips and Hamstrings

More Yoga Videos from Next Level Yoga on YouTube

Short Soothing Yin Yoga Class by Next Level Yoga

Neck and Shoulder Elixir Yoga Class by Next Level Yoga

Hips and Hamstrings Yoga Class by Next Level Yoga

Yin Yang Flow by Next Level Yoga

Upper Body Stretch and Strengthen

 

Best Ever Vegan Biscuit Recipe

Vegan Biscuits? WTF, Tara? Yes why the food, indeed. I know it’s a little off topic here, but let me explain.  On my stats page I can see the top searches on my site.  They are usually things like “child’s pose,” “hip flexors” and “can yoga fix my back.”  But awhile ago, my top search was “vegan biscuit recipe.”

This went on for a few days, and I began to wonder who would be searching this site for a vegan biscuit recipe.  Do they think just because I teach yoga I am a vegan too?  Not only a vegan, but one who bakes! That’s a lot of pressure buddy, I am not that disciplined. I could not get it out of my mind, and decided I needed to help.

I did a little research, and found a variety of vegan biscuit recipes.  Since I don’t bake (and, full disclosure, I am also not vegan), I asked my daughter, Piper, to test out several recipes until we decided on the best one.  And here we are, don’t ever think I don’t care about my people.

I present the best Vegan Biscuits recipe ever.

vegan biscuit recipe
Vegan Biscuits and Jam, because Vegan Biscuits and Sausage Gravy would be wrong.

Here’s what you are going to need.

Vegan Biscuit ingredients
Everything you need for awesome biscuits.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For those of you who are not “visual learners”  Here’s an ingredient list.

I cup of unsweetened Almond Milk

1 TB of fresh lemon juice

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 TB baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp salt

4 TBS cold vegan Butter (we used Miyoko, I am clearly skeptical)

vegan butter
Vegan butter, really? I don’t know about this stuff.

Preheat oven to 450.  Add lemon juice to almond milk to make vegan buttermilk.

Mix all the dry ingredients, whisk together.  Add butter to bowl and mix together with your hands until it resembles wet sand.  Work quickly you don’t want your butter getting warm.

Make a well in the center with wooden spoon and add in buttermilk a little at a time.  Keep mixing until it all comes together, you may not need all the buttermilk.

vegan biscuit 3

Turn out dough to a floured surface, sprinkle with flour and turn it on itself 5-6 times. Flatten it using your hands to about 1″ thick, then cut the biscuits with a glass or biscuit cutter.

vegan biscuit sprinkle.JPG
Messy Business, these biscuits.

Put the cut biscuits on a baking sheet in two rows with the edges lightly touching. Indent each biscuit in the center, and brush tops with melted butter. Bake for 12-15 minutes.

vegan biscuit 5.JPG
Biscuit belly buttons, adorable!

And voila, perfect, delicious Vegan Biscuits.  Enjoy! (I hope these were not needed for a time-sensitive event.)

vegan biscuite voila

 

Yoga Video Alert- Stretch & Strengthen the Upper Body on YouTube

revolved lunge pose next level yoga

Do you have neck and shoulder issues?  If so, it might be caused by tight chest and shoulder muscles.  Stretch & Strengthen the Upper Body is designed to loosen the muscles of the chest, shoulders and upper back.  At the same time, working the muscles of the arms to develop tone and definition. Here is a link to the class Next Level Yoga Upper Body Class

If you want “yoga arms” or are already buff but need some definition to really prime your entry to the “gun show,” this is the class for you.  It starts out slow and easy, then builds some mobility in the shoulders with some gentle flow work.

Then on to some deep upper body stretches to really loosen the chest and upper back. Finally, a smooth landing on the mat with some reclined stretching and a nice, long final relaxation.

If you tried this class and liked it, please show your support by subscribing to the channel so you will receive an email message whenever a new video is posted.

More Yoga Videos from Next Level Yoga on YouTube

Short Soothing Yin Yoga Class by Next Level Yoga

Neck and Shoulder Elixir Yoga Class by Next Level Yoga

Hips and Hamstrings Yoga Class by Next Level Yoga

Yin Yang Flow by Next Level Yoga

Thanks so much,

Tara

Yoga Club Review-Take 3

Yoga Club tree pose bubble

yoga club logo

Shameful confession #1, I have no fashion sense. Apparently I am not alone, which is why Yoga Club exists and is thriving.  Yoga Club is like Stitch Fix, but for workout clothes.  If you don’t know what Stitch Fix is, you may find my post about my Stitch Fix adventure interesting, or not, no pressure, but aren’t you a tiny bit curious now,  here’s the link just in case you want to take a peek, I’ll wait.  June Stitch Fix Review

You may remember my last Yoga Club installment (Yoga Club Review Take 2) included a top that was not to my liking and I was going to check out their exchange program.  I discovered I had two options; I could join a Facebook group exclusively for selling and exchanging Yoga Club items, or I could choose a replacement from some options on their website.  I chose the latter and picked an MPG Sport t-shirt in a color called “fiery coral”  Let’s see how that turned out.

Yoga Club bright pink t shirt
MPG Sport Link Seamless T-Shirt retail price $38

WOW!  Needless to say, Fiery Coral is such a retina searing color, sunglasses are required.  I don’t think this one is going to work for me,  the fit is great but the color is shall we say, a bit garish.  So, I went back in and traded this out for another shirt in a more soothing palate which will come with next month’s box.

Next, was this…

Yoga Club Kenneth Cole Tank Singlet
Kenneth Cole Reaction Cosmic Singlet retail price $44

There is just no way around it, I am not a bubble gum pink tank top kinda gal.  To be fair, this top is really cute and it fits well, but it’s just not me, so it will be going back and will hopefully find a home with someone who can pull off this color.

The next item in the bright pink box was this..

Yoga Club 3 vest
Glyder Moxie Vest retail price $76

Now we’re talking.  This vest is more my style.  It’s a nice length, the fabric is super soft and there are big pockets to hide my Skittles.  These Threads for Thought leggings were also included, they are great, the fabric is really soft, they have a cute bandage strap detail on the leg (which looks a little bondage-y), but, I have so many pairs of black pants I think I will try to exchange these as well.

Yoga Club thread for thoughts legging zaria
Threads for Thought Zaria Legging retail price $98

So what have we learned, first Tara can’t wear pink, second it is possible to have too many pairs of black pants, and finally I eat too many Skittles.

Want to give Yoga Club a try? Here are the details on how to get started and save 25%?

How it works: YogaClub is a subscription service,  when you join you will choose a commitment level.  The Mantra (a pair of leggings), the Karma (leggings and a top), and the Guru (leggings, a top and a layering piece). Prices range from $45-$79, and you choose monthly or seasonal shipments.

If you use my referral code, ( Yoga Club Referral Link ) you will get 25% off your first box.  Full disclosure, I will get “Lotus Bucks” in return, but frankly you need a ton of them to just to get a 10% discount, so if you use someone else’s link I won’t be upset.  But please use a referral code, don’t be a chump like me and pay full price the first time.

When you click through that link, you will take a little style quiz and; yes, you do have to give them your credit card information.  Shortly thereafter you will get a bright pink YogaClub box full of goodies just for you.  It’s like your birthday every month.