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Kelly McGonigal



Article Archive

Training for Mind-Body Resilience

September 18, 2015

Think of a recent time you felt stressed. Maybe it was during an argument with your spouse, or a meltdown with your kids. Maybe you were stuck in traffic and late for an important meeting. Or maybe you were lying in bed, worrying about work. Whatever the cause of your stress, your body and brain were almost certainly experiencing the same thing: boiling blood pressure, a churning stomach, tight muscles and a racing mind.

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Keep Clients on Track With Their Goals!

February 24, 2012

It’s early March. Any fitness pro knows the New Year’s cycle: large numbers of nonexercisers vow to get fit, show up in January–and then disappear within a month or two. How can you prevent this? People fall off the workout wagon for many reasons: Too tired. Too busy. Too boring. Too hard. Let’s look at why the motivation to change and the intention to work out aren’t always enough, and how you can help exercisers stick to their resolutions.

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How Can Clients Keep Their New Year’s Resolutions?

December 13, 2011

In 2011, TIME magazine named the joint goal of losing weight and getting fit as the most commonly broken New Year’s resolution (TIME.com 2011). You don’t have to be psychic to predict a similar trend for 2012. Any fitness pro who’s been in the business for at least a year knows the New Year’s cycle:…

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Yoga Lesson Plan 2: Twisting from the Core and Intention

October 28, 2011

This is the second of a three-part sample lesson plan series that will provide both a physical focus to guide your choice of postures, and a practice focus to help students explore an important yoga principle. The intention is to present guidelines for creating a coherent and thoughtful class experience. The suggestions are broad enough to allow you to choose poses that are appropriate for your students.

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Yoga Lesson Plan 1: Hip-Opening and Patience

October 28, 2011

This is the first of a three-part lesson plan series that will provide both a physical focus to guide your choice of postures, and a practice focus to help students explore an important yoga principle. The intention is to present guidelines for creating a coherent and thoughtful class experience. The suggestions are broad enough to allow you to choose poses that are appropriate for your students.

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Brief Bouts & Baby Steps

June 14, 2011

&EEvery day, consumers are bombarded with bogus claims about the benefits of quick workouts. Magazine covers offer the “60-second ab exercise” that will “peel off 7 pounds” or tout faster workouts to “burn double the fat in half the time.” Fitness infomercials claim that just minutes a day will “get you ripped, guaranteed” and boast testimonials from users who have (supposedly) lost more than 50 pounds, or three dress sizes, with just 3 minutes of exercise a day.

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How to Become a Yoga Instructor

March 31, 2011

If you are enthusiastic about yoga and have seen its transformative effect in your own life, it’s natural to want to share that with others. And if you are comfortable in front of a group but also know how to connect one-on-one, teaching yoga may be a perfect fit.

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Yoga to Benefit Body, Mind & Spirit

October 21, 2010

The benefits of yoga go beyond more flexible hamstrings, a stronger core or relief from back pain. Yoga has the power to make you more resilient to stress. It reminds you of your inner strength. It can give you back a sense of joy and purpose in life. Many students come to yoga because they instinctively feel it will be a beneficial thing for them to do, in a holistic sense.

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Yoga Teaching Strategies for Cohesiveness

August 16, 2010

The benefits of yoga go beyond more flexible hamstrings, a stronger core or relief from back pain. Yoga has the power to make you more resilient to stress. It reminds you of your inner strength. It can give you back a sense of joy and purpose in life.

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Mindful Weight Loss Program

July 22, 2010

Mindfulness is the process of paying attention both to inner cues (thoughts, emotions and sensations) and to the environment. Mindfulness-based weight loss programs are a recent arrival on the scene, but research suggests they have much to offer chronically unsuccessful dieters. One such program is the Mindful Eating and Living (MEAL) program at the University of New Mexico Center for Life Integrative Medicine Specialty Clinic.

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Mindfulness & Weight Loss

May 18, 2010

Imagine this: you’re staring at your favorite forbidden food—the one thing that threatens to topple your diet. You pick it up, studying its color, shape and texture. You lift it to your nose and welcome its tempting aroma. Finally, you take a bite and savor its taste.

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Successful Yoga-Pilates Fusion

February 18, 2010

When Pilates and yoga first hit mainstream fitness over a decade ago, instructors enthusiastically fused these traditional methods with everything from kickboxing to weight lifting, disco and rollerblading. While many of these fads have fizzled, the fusion of Pilates and yoga remains a popular combination—and one that has continued to mature since the hundred was first introduced to downward-facing dog.

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Yoga-Pilates Fusion: The State of the Union

January 26, 2010

When Pilates and yoga first hit mainstream fitness over a decade ago, instructors enthusiastically fused these traditional methods with everything from kickboxing to weight lifting, disco and rollerblading. While many of these fads have fizzled, the fusion of Pilates and yoga remains a popular combination. IDEA spoke with several leaders in the field to find out how the yoga-Pilates format has matured since the hundred was first introduced to downward-facing dog.

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Fitness for Cancer Survivors

October 26, 2009

Eleven years ago, personal trainer and fitness instructor Judy Cerrito was diagnosed with breast cancer. When she looked for an exercise program to help her overcome the pain, stiffness and other side effects of treatment, she could not find anything specifically for breast cancer survivors. So as soon as she was back to work at the YMCA of Greater Providence, Rhode Island, she created something herself.

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A Yoga Sequence for Runners

March 4, 2009

Kristi Peacock, a 23-year-old account executive in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, was preparing for her first marathon. The intense training was strengthening her body but also taking a toll. As the miles racked up, so did the strain to her iliotibial band, Achilles tendons and back.

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The Science of Willpower

May 31, 2008

What do the following acts have in
common?

choosing the healthy items at the breakfast
buffet and ignoring the pastries and fried food
smiling and saying, “Let’s see if I can help
you with that,” when an angry client blows a minor issue into a major complaint
sticking to a budget, even after your initial
enthusiasm for impro…

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The Science of Willpower

May 31, 2008

What do the following acts have in common?
choosing the healthy items at the breakfast buffet and ignoring the pastries and fried food

smiling and saying, “Let’s see if I can help you with that,” when an angry client blows a minor issue into a major complaint

sticking to a budget, even after your in…

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Meditation and breathing

Guided Relaxation Script: Breathing the Body

February 12, 2008

When it comes to stress relief, we need all the help we can get. When you are centered, your students and clients also benefit. Whether you teach a group of people or one-on-one, the following guided relaxation is a great way to lead others in a full-body awareness exercise.

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