Strike a Pose at Find Your Zen Yoga

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By Kirsti Correa | Photos by John Lucarelli

 

Yoga devotees can find a new position to master in Corona del Mar. Earlier this year, Find Your Zen Yoga & Nutrition Studio opened above Summer House at Coast Highway and Fernleaf Avenue, offering more than 20 classes each week led by a small staff of instructors. Owner Christina Ratusznik debuted the space in March to combine her interests in yoga, personal training and nutrition: “I wanted to bring all three aspects together into one studio to provide a one-stop shop for health,” she explains.

At the studio, yoga classes range from private and group sessions, covering different styles like yin, flow and power yoga. “Flow is our beginner class, power focuses on strength and holding poses for longer periods of time, and yin is completely restorative,” Ratusznik says. “I also created the FYZ 5 class on my own. It includes more intervals, whether it’s squats or core work, to get cardio in there as well.”

For a lean and toned body, combine quality nutrition with the following three yoga poses recommended by Ratusznik.

High Plank

Benefits: Tones the entire core, shoulders and legs

Photo by John Lucarelli
Photo by John Lucarelli

Start in a pushup position with wrists directly below shoulders and the eyes of your elbows pointed forward. Firmly press down through all 10 fingers to take weight off your wrists. Pull your belly button toward your spine and engage your abs. Find one straight line from your shoulders all the way to your heels without allowing hips to sag or butt to press up. Engage quadriceps and the front of your thighs; press through the heels. Hold this pose, breathing through the nose, for a count of 30 seconds. Rest for 10 seconds, then repeat three times.

 

Chaturanga Dandasana to Pushup

Benefits: Works core, upper arms (triceps and shoulders) and legs

Photo by John Lucarelli
Photo by John Lucarelli

Bend your elbows to 90-degree angles, keeping triceps squeezing in to your ribs, then push yourself straight back up into high plank. To modify, come onto your knees and find a straight line from your knees to the shoulders, then lower down to 90-degree angles at the elbows and press back up. Do 10 repetitions, then push back into child’s pose and rest for 30 seconds; repeat three times.

 

Downward-Facing Dog

Benefits: Lengthens the spine and stretches the back of the legs (Achilles tendon, calves and hamstrings); builds strength in the shoulders and triceps

Photo by John Lucarelli
Photo by John Lucarelli

From child’s pose, tuck your toes and press straight up into an inverted V-shape. Arms should be shoulder-width apart as you press through all 10 fingers. As your head and neck hang heavy, press armpits back toward your quads and press your tailbone up to the sky. With feet about hip-width apart, press your heels down toward the mat and try to straighten your legs as much as you can to get a stretch through the entire back of the legs. Hold for one minute, then rest in child’s pose; repeat three times.

 

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