With the word of the month being Passion; and, knowing that generally passion is an expression of the heart, I felt like it would be a great time to focus on heart openers, or chest stretches.
At the Dailey Method, we know from experience and research how important it is to find balance in our bodies. In general, from our daily postures our back muscles tend to be weak and our chest muscles tight. This combination can negatively affect our posture, our back health and the confidence we project. In a Dailey Method class we make sure to give you a good balance of back work and chest stretches. However, doing a few additional on your own can make all the difference. Especially if you like to use your phone or computer a lot!
Single arm wall stretch:
Stand with your side to a wall and put your hand flat on the wall, fingers spread wide. Turn your focus towards the center of the room to increase the stretch. You can place your hand at shoulder height or a few inches above or below shoulder height to lengthen different fibers of the pectoralis muscles.
Spine extension with chest opening:
Double benefit of working the extensors of your entire spine to create back body strength and chest flexibility. If you can’t keep your palms together it’s okay to just clasp your fingers. Try to reverse your grip ½ of the time and keep your focus on the ground to maintain length in your cervical spine.
Kate Winslet stretch:
No wonder she had such great posture! This is my all-time favorite. You can use a counter if you’re not fortunate enough to have your own barre. Maintain your hands wider than hips, roll your chest open and lean your heart forward.
Try to incorporate these simple, effective stretches into your self-care on a regular basis. Notice how you will feel more open with a little consistency. Now you have even more reason to lead with your heart!
I chose Passion as the WOM for February. Passion is a big word! It is generally related to desire, affection, love and devotion. But I feel that so many aspects of our lives can relate to passion – if we live fully. It can be the way we feel about a cause that is important to us, a hobby, or a job. It can be for anything or anyone that really turns us on and lights us up.
“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style
– Maya Angelou (One of my personal favorites!)
Passion doesn’t have to feel intense or singularly-focused. I picture it as something that feels like it’s shining or glittering, drawing me in; something that I know incorporating in my life just might encourage greater happiness. It can be something grand (like the love of your life) or something small (the book you’re reading that you can’t put down!)
“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”
-Harriet Tubman (Another incredible inspiration. I love strong women!)
I thought about it and came up with the list of what I’m feeling passionate about it my life right now:
The evolution of the Dailey Method practice: I love every aspect of the training, teaching, development and growth of the curriculum.
The ability to always be a student. I am currently becoming Dailey Cycle trained. Even though I’ve been strongly involved in the development of this product I haven’t taught it nor owned it. I am in the process of building my own Dailey Cycle studio in Fairfax and am so excited to become stronger and more knowledgeable in a new direction.
I’m very passionate about raising my kids well.
I also experience passion personally in the studio. As a student being in the moment and feeling strong, or allowing compassion for myself and being okay with the need to back off. We want everyone to be their most authentic selves. Don’t compete unless you WANT to.
OMG as a teacher. I can wake up tired. My kids can be a pain in the &#% getting off to school. I “expect” to arrive a minimum of 15 minutes before class. Kids don’t always cooperate. The moment I turn on my mic and warm up song, however, I’m good. I’m happy and I’m present.
Traveling and expansion. Talk about PASSION. I love to travel. There’s so much I want to see and experience. It is true that travel is the only thing you spend money on that makes you richer.
I know, should have been 1, but if you really know me you understand. You know where I stand. I support it because it’s right. Not because I know it. Right?
Being supportive and supporting to people, especially women.
What turns you on the most? Or what are the things you crave for in your life in order to make you thrive.
Take a bit of time to think about what you’re the most passionate about. Or what you’d like to be passionate about. Don’t hesitate. Reach for it. Let yourself be your most expansive self.
In a world moving so rapidly, with fragmented bits of information coming at us from every angle; sometimes the only thing we feel connected to is the device in front of us.
If we can reach beyond, re-connect, and take care of what is important – we are building the foundation for a sound mind and are allowing that to translate into a healthy body.
Our TDM family knows the importance of genuine connection and shared with us their stories of how The Dailey Method is the place to find it…
Bryna’s Story – connection with community
If you find yourself at TDM in downtown San Francisco, you may run into Bryna O’Shea. O’Shea, who stumbled into a studio 4 years ago through an accidental booking, has been consistent in her practice since day 1. “Even though I was 61 when I started, I gravitated towards the strong TDM women around me, some of whom were 20+ years younger!”
O’Shea connected with a group of 6-7 women over time and soon had her clan. “We would always text each other and make it a point to go to the the same 11am class, to see each other, to sweat together.”
More remarkable than the physical strength O’Shea’s practice and group of friends gave her, was the emotional support she found while coping with the loss of her husband, a 6th degree black belt who had always advocated a healthy mind and body. “I knew I had to be stronger, and with these women we were all just trying to be the best we could be. Together.”
Lorna’s and Ashley’s Story – connection with self
For Lorna Bennett Samatas, a teacher, speaker and lifecoach, The Dailey Method is about connecting within. “Every time I practice I am reminded to tune-in (pay attention to my body, my breath, what is present right now); tune-out (external voices, distractions, etc….); and turn-on! (My mind, muscles, movement),” she says.
For Bennett Samatas, the more truly connected to herself, the more authentic her connections with others become.
Ashley Adam, owner of TDM San Diego, knows that The Dailey Method is a practice that teaches one to create a relationship – a deep connection between mind, body and spirit. “I can feel it all come together in those last moments of thigh work when all I want to do is give up but I take the opportunity to go within and feel all the fibers of my muscles working (or shaking!) to full capacity, my mind stays focused on maintaining alignment and helps me through.”
Erin’s & Kelly’s Story – connection with family & friends
For Erin Dailey Dern of TDM Naperville and Kelly Dailey Vinoche, TDM Paris owner, The Dailey Method is a sister/family bond that allows them to stay connected on so many levels.
They have a few serendipitous stories that extend the connection even further!
Renée, a friend, neighbor and now a long-time TDM client was the connection that introduced The Dailey Method to the Chicago area. She knew Erin was Jill’s sister and she had trained for the method in 2005. Two years later, Renée mentioned this fact to Colleen Patrino, the first owner of The Dailey Method Naperville and pioneer of the method in the Midwest . The rest is history as TDM opened its doors outside Northern California and Paris. It hasn’t stopped expanding since.
Elissa, a childhood friend of the Dailey sisters from Denver, moved to Naperville long before Erin did. She has since become an instructor at The Dailey Method here (and her daughter works the front desk!)
Sarah was 10 years old when she took her first class after Kelly trained in San Francisco with Jill and brought The Dailey Method to Paris in 2003. She is now managing TDM Paris and has become the 1st second generation Dailey Method owner.
“My favorite part about The Dailey Method is the connection it gives me, across the Atlantic, to my sisters and now working with my daughter is a dream come true.”
When life gets crazy and chaotic it is a challenge to pull together a quick and healthy meal. We asked some of our Dailey Method owners and staff to share their go-to weeknight dinners. Here are a few ideas to add to this week’s menu.
Mexican Style Baked Sweet Potatoes from Jessica Long, owner The Dailey Method Barre Studio, Santa Rosa, CA.
We love to make Mexican-style baked sweet potatoes. Simply bake a sweet potato, slice in half and top with chopped red bell peppers, onions, tomatoes, jalapeño, olives, guacamole, cumin, chili powder, salt & pepper. Delicious! (Our Marketing Director, Emily, was drooling over this recipe when Jessica shared it and made it for dinner last night. Pictured below with sautéed spinach and chopped cilantro).
Whole30 Dijon Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Veggies from Tim Torres, co-owner The Dailey Method Barre + Cycle Studio, Washington DC
What you need:
2 lb pork tenderloin
2 tsp dried basil
2 tsp dried rosemary
2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1-2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
Combine the basil, rosemary, and oregano and pulse in a spice grinder until a powder forms. Add the garlic powder and salt to the spice mixture. Preheat oven to 450 F. In a large skillet, heat 1-2 Tbsp of oil over medium-high heat. Spread the Dijon mustard over all sides of the pork tenderloin. Sprinkle the seasoning mixture evenly over all sides and rub the mixture into the pork tenderloin. Sear the tenderloin for 3 minutes per side (12 minutes total). Once seared, place the tenderloin in a baking dish and bake until cooked through (about 15-20 minutes).
Paprika and Cumin Roasted Vegetables
3 cups Brussels sprouts, halved
2 cups turnips, cubed
1 cup carrots, chopped
1 red onion, sliced
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
2 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. cumin
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Toss the vegetables with olive oil, paprika, cumin, salt, and pepper.
Place on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray in a single layer. Roast for 25-30 minutes, shaking a few times during cooking, until vegetables are tender and cooked through.
Quick Mexican Pozole from Michelle Moezzi, Senior Graphic Designer for The Dailey Method
I do this veggie but you can add chicken. Any stock choice (veggie, chicken, etc), add hominy or garbanzo beans, onion, zucchini, green beans, corn. Salt and pepper to taste. Cook until veggies are tender. Add chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (or just the sauce!) to give heat and smokey flavor. Serve hot and garnish with cubed avocado, squeeze of lime and fresh cilantro.
Weeknight Frittata from Tarra Sachedina, co-owner The Dailey Method Barre Studio, Phoenix, AZ
After a busy day a frittata is a go-to for our house. You can throw in any veggies you have laying around (wilting greens…you bet!) super good if you brown up some sweet potatoes for the bottom, add in your eggs, cheese, veggies, whatever … and bake until done. So satisfying plus there’s usually leftovers!
Burger Bar with Grassfed Beef from Carly Goidosik, owner The Dailey Method Barre Studio, Birmingham, MI
I love this family-friendly option because it allows each person to customize their meal with little work. I made mine clean while my hubby & 3-year-old son made theirs… not so clean. Everyone is happy. It’s also a lot of fun for the kids since they get to create their own meal. You could easily do the same thing with turkey or even veggie burgers. It also pairs well with kombucha beer. Some of my favorite clean toppings: sauerkraut, guacamole, balsamic glazed portabella mushrooms, and Primal Kitchen chipotle mayo. If I have the time I like to make eggplant or sweet potato sliders in lieu of the bun. If I’m running short on time I throw over a bed of lettuce.
As I discussed last week, January is the month to reflect and work on evolving the person you are, to be your Authentic self and to direct your energy towards what you want to manifest in the coming year.
We are constantly taken back by our Dailey Method studio owners, their authenticity, and how they continue to inspire and motivate in their communities. We have gathered some of their intentions for the year and would like to share with you how they are shifting and evolving in 2017.
Intentions around enriching connections with family and self…
“I’m going to look up more throughout my day and notice the people around me. Make eye contact, say hello, connect. Step one started for me already by removing Facebook from my phone. Will still check it at home on my computer but I want to be less focused on my phone and more focused on the world around me as I move about my day.”
Whether you are looking to channel your 2017 energy inward towards the best self possible, focus on more around you, or both – we hope that our owners have inspired you to work towards what you want to see this year!