Deep Stretch At MOGA Yoga

by Jen on December 13, 2012

I really enjoyed reading your responses to my “On Showing Up” post. They were very thought provoking and insightful. I will be responding to all of them and also writing a “Part 2″ post because I have a lot more to say about the topic.

I also appreciate the concern and kind words about my hip. I have been babying it a ton and it’s feeling so much better than it did earlier in the week. There’s been no running or CrossFit and I’ve been focusing on yoga. In a stroke of good luck, I made plans a couple of weeks ago to attend a deep stretch class at MOGA today.

MOGA is a yoga and mobility program that focuses on improving athletic performance and as well as just helping the general public feel and move better. They specialize in deep stretch and mobility classes and also offer Thai massage and private stretch/mobility sessions. The classes are small, personalized and feature hands-on assists. They have partnered with CrossFit gyms and sports teams in the area to make mobility and stretching an important part of the athletes workout routines.

It’s tucked away in the Atherton Lofts in Southend Charlotte. I got hooked up with MOGA through lululemon. The two ladies behind MOGA, Beth and Emily, are new ambassadors. I met them through lulu and CrossFit events. I was so excited when they reached out to me about trying a class.

Their studio space is exactly what I love…light and airy. I am always drawn to open spaces with lots of natural light so I felt right at home and totally at ease once I rolled out my mat. Beth was our instructor for today’s deep stretch class and she was so welcoming and easygoing.

I was so happy when Beth announced that the focus of the class was going to be on IT bands because I know that some of my hip issues come from a giant knot in my IT band that I cannot get to release. The one-hour deep stretch class absolutely flew by. I am admittedly so terrible at making myself slow down and take classes like this and it was exactly what my body needed today. The class featured long holds in poses where I could totally let go and let things release. I felt so sleepy and relaxed after spending three minutes in pigeon on each side. It was luxurious! I also loved Beth’s playlist. Heavy on stuff like Ray LaMontagne and David Gray.

MOGA utilizes props in their classes. Today we used blocks, blankets and straps to assist us in getting deeper and feeling more comfortable in poses. I don’t know how such a stigma has formed around the use of blocks in classes but I am all for them and regularly use them. I try to encourage my students to do the same but I still find that most muscle and cheat through poses when a block would make all the difference in the world. It doesn’t make you less of a yogi. Just a smarter yogi. (Small rant.)

A fun surprise at the end of class was a small cup of coconut water beside my mat. I thought it was a cute touch.

If you live in the Charlotte area and are looking for a restorative practice with a focus on stretching and mobility then I would definitely recommend checking out a class at MOGA. I want to go back and check out one of their mobility classes that focuses more on foam rolling and myofascial release.

Do you incorporate stretching into your weekly routine? Have you taken a specialized deep stretch class? 

Lunch after class was a big salad with beets, bacon, candied pecans, goat cheese, eggs and dried cranberries.

Dinner tonight was grilled cheese and tomato soup. I added two types of cheese, cranberry sauce and arugula to the grilled cheese. Perfect.

It’s late. Off to relax. I need to be MEGA productive tomorrow!

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Claire December 14, 2012 at 8:23 am

what I wouldn’t give to have a studio like MOGA where I live!! that is such a great idea for a business, and exactly what my body needs. jealous!

also, that salad and dinner both made me drool everywhere. pecans, cranberries, goat cheese, and beets are 4 of my 5 favourite salad toppings. you have mad salad skillzz

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2 Tara Deal December 14, 2012 at 8:42 am

I NEED to incorporate stretching much more than I do. The last yoga class I attended (over a month ago!) focused on shoulder opening, but I think I would TOTALLY benefit from the IT band focus as well :) Have a great weekend!

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3 Linda December 14, 2012 at 9:17 am

MOGA looks great! A studio devoted to mobility and deep stretching??I’m definitely checking them out. I completely understand how you feel. Went to PT weekly prior to MCM. Since then my right glute/hip flexor is better but still gets tight. I really notice it when I do single leg work. What I can do on my left side is much more difficult on my right. It feels like a tight knot that won’t release. Thanks so much for sharing your experiences and all the great resources we have in Charlotte!

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4 Kerry @ Totes My Oats December 14, 2012 at 10:01 am

What a great studio! I would love to check something like that out.

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5 Rachel December 14, 2012 at 10:32 am

I’ve had hip/IT Band issues in the past as well. As important as stretching and foam rolling is, I’ve also found that strengthening exercises help a lot! The hip adductor and abductor machines at gyms are good ones. Also, try taking one of those big, stretchy rubber bands and tie it into a big loop. Put the loop around the bottom of your legs (like a few inches above your ankles) and while standing, slowly move one leg out to the side and just kind of pulse it for 10-12 reps, then stretch. The resistance makes you feel the burn in your hips, but it really does help to IT Band/hip issue recovery!

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6 Addy @ Six-Kick Switch December 14, 2012 at 12:37 pm

What a great thing MOGA is on to….mobility yoga. I like it. I really need to make more of an effort to stretch – right now I’m lucky if I get in one or two yoga sessions a week. But flexibility is so important! Glad you’re finding some relief for all your knots and aches!

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7 Bess @ Bess Be Fit December 14, 2012 at 1:35 pm

Nothing wrong with using blocks!! I’m with ya there. The studio I go to is big on them so I never feel out of place using them. They can make all the difference!

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8 Amy December 14, 2012 at 3:27 pm

I have never heard of this place…I can’t wait to try it out. I have gotten a thai yoga massage from Emily before and it was awesome!

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9 Grace @ Practicing Grace December 14, 2012 at 4:00 pm

I went to yoga after my run today. And normally I am antsy for a kick butt, fast paced flow. But today’s class was surprisingly slow–about opening ourselves to make room for our breath. Lots of hip openers and twists to open the areas of ourselves for our breath. Both in and off the mat we need to slow down and take focus of our breath. Loved it

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10 She Rocks Fitness December 14, 2012 at 4:59 pm

I LOVE props and it’s so important to use them! I have been using blocks for pigeon and reverse triangle. It was time to put my ego aside and work on my FORM! That studio is gorgeous. Love the natural light and the coconut water. A very sweet touch! Have a beautiful weekend!

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11 elizabeth December 14, 2012 at 10:41 pm

What is that yoga pose you are doing in the picture on the left with the christmas lights and how the heck do you do it? I do yoga all time time, but can’t even imagine how I would get into that pose.

My IT band is much better now that I practice yoga often and run up mountains every day, slowly and mostly in the snow right now, but I think the hill work has made my legs much stronger. Hope your body lets you run more soon.

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