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Road Trip Final Thoughts: Gratitude, Lessons Learned, Car Yoga, Poster Print Giveaway!

in Great American YogaDork Road Trip

photo by J.T. Liss

The YogaDork has landed! As promised, the Springer-esque Final Thoughts.

The Long and Winding Road…Life in the Fast Lane…Life is a Highway…you get the picture. YD has been ramblin’, man!

So YD went on a roadtrip, a crazy tour over the course of 13 days visiting Yoga Americana West Coast style. It was a fantastic voyage filled with exploration, yoga and possible space aliens. Gallivanting made possible by the support of sponsors Wente Vineywards and Hugger Mugger, and love from Karma Warrior and IAMMAI Athletics.

"Untitled" (Grand Canyon Sky) by J.T. Liss

Before we go any further, the giveaway! While we were traveling the great West Coast, our co-pilot and photographer JT Liss was snapping away. Photos from the trip are now up for sale, with 25% benefiting Off the Mat, Into the World, but we’re super excited to announce that we’ll be giving away one signed and numbered poster sized print (or any size you like) of ANY photo from the lot! See them all here! A donation will be made in the winner’s name to OTM.

To Enter: Just tell us in the comments how or where you do, or would like to do, yoga off the mat. This could anywhere from your community to Haiti and anything from making an effort to smile at someone on the street to helping rebuild homes after a natural disaster. Remember, every little bit counts and no effort is too small, and this could be something you intend on doing in the near future. Entries accepted until Monday September 12th. A winner will be chosen at random and announced soon after. Good luck!

UPDATE: Congrats to Nicole Marie!

PEACE

Things we’ve learned on the road in no particular order:

  • It’s entirely possible to drive approx 5000 miles in 2 weeks.
  • The West Coast radio LOVES John Mellencamp. So much so we almost died of overplay in a small town.
  • Portland is possibly the nicest city, anywhere. And they LOVE their trees, as evidenced by their Gas Station bathroom graffiti:

  • Worship is the word at Wanderlust. Shiva or weed, we couldn’t tell which was holier.
  • Wine was a welcomed treat after many hours in the car. (Wente blessings)
  • Hugger Mugger meditation cushion doubles nicely as car lap pillow, further enabling our mobile YD HQ.
  • The Grand Canyon is even more awesomely fantastic in person. (note: yoga away from edge!)
  • Someone at Aeron needs to talk to every car company’s chair design squad.
  • Car yoga! We did it and you can too. Here are a few poses we came up with on the road:

1. Supported Revolved Triangle: open passenger car door, place right foot on ledge inside door, left hand on right shin, right hand on window and use as lever to twist. Wring it out! repeat on driver’s side with left leg.

2. Reclined Passenger Updog: recline seat back as far as it can go. roll over to your belly, lift and open your heart. Safety first! Can be done with seatbelt still on. *Be sure to alert driver so they are no distracted and utterly confused.

3. Reclined Passenger Settu Bandhasana: with seat still reclined, lie on your back, bend knees, feet flat. hold sides of seat as you lift to supported bridge pose. breathe. release. repeat as needed or until you pass an 18-wheeler.

4. Car-Seated Forward Fold: move seat all the way back, stretch legs forward, fold.

5. Shoulder stretches: Garudasana, Gomukhasana, ReachAround Asana – the back of the car seat, of course! Namaste.

Warning: These work well for passenger/navigator. Drivers can play too. Just, uh, don’t be driving.

Great American YogaDork Road Trip By the Numbers:

Shout outs: Portland, Seattle, Waldport, Oregon Coast, San Francisco, Livermore, Reno, Lake Tahoe, Carson City, Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, Victorville, LA (we sat in traffic long enough for it to count), Santa Barbara, Big Sur, Canyonville, Carson City, Weed (the last 3 pit stops).

We’re Riding on a Freeway of Love

Roll Credits:

  • Motel 6 – you left the light on for us more than a few times. hugs.
  • Plaid Pantry in Portland – mostly for the name, and proudly wearing plaid.
  • Cliff bars, clementines and trail mix – for keeping us satiated through 13 hr stretches.
  • California Department of Food and Agriculture Inspection Lady – for scaring the bejesus out of us and promptly cracking us up at 2am.
  • Oregon DMV head of license plate naming (3 numbers + 3 letters making up a funny smushed word = genius and hours of fun. 313 FGK? fahgettaboutit)
  • Whole Foods – oh how many times you’ve saved us from a lunch of Jay’s O-KE-DOKE Hot Cheese Popcorn. “When it’s more than OK…”
  • Tech: Apple iPhone, Verizon/Samsung Hotspot device – this goes without saying. Who needs maps when you have GPS and internet in the desert?
  • Chevy – for making the coolest silver bullet with the oddest brown and black racecar interior only a nonjudgmental yogi could love.

Look at that face.

  • Last, but not least: Weed – the most fun pit stop capitalizing unabashedly on your name, with weed t-shirts, memorabilia and knee-slapping corny signage.

And that, dear yogadorks, is the end of that road, but just the beginning of our journey.

This crazy trip had us questioning what yoga is, what it means to people outside of our regular studios and yoga spaces, and we saw everything from bells and whistles, to feathers and face paint to humble practices in homey studios. It was a long strange trip, but wherever we went we saw community and people making yoga their own and we wouldn’t change a minute of it.

photo by JT Liss

Stay tuned for the last hurrah at Bhakti Fest.

——

Earlier

Read the Great American YogaDork Roadtrip recaps

Wanderlust Tahoe Recap: New Yoga Age, A Space Oddity (photos)

Wanderlust Tahoe Day 1: The Hills Are Alive With the Sound of Yogis!

4 comments… add one

  • nicole marie

    I have been volunteering at our church teaching kids and families yoga that have been affected by the extensive flooding here in NJ.

    Nothing better than taking a few minutes to re-group and connect with your inner yogi in the midst of rebuilding.

  • Thanks for the great summary. I grew up in California, college in San Francisco, all my relatives from Los Angeles, so I can picture everything very clearly.

    Bob

  • Looks like a wonderful trip! I would love to do yoga with my children in a clearing in our favorite forest, and looks like we will be able to do that very soon!

  • Wonderful trip!
    I am in the midst of some amazing change myself. Creating a shift in perspective, as I like to call it, and taking my ‘yoga show’ on the road! I am hoping to connect with Off The Mat and create awareness & support of some local charities along the way.
    The dream… to travel south from Ontario, Canada to Tulum, Mexico, connecting and teaching yoga along the way.
    The reality… I am now selling my home, buying an RV, packing my life, my mat along with my dog & cat and hitting the road. I hope to inspire women along the way to live out their dreams and create their own change in a positive way. I hope you will follow my dream… http://www.yogablissadventures.com

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