Healthy Hollywood: Wellness Wednesday – Fuel Your Inner Warrior!

According to the Chinese Astrology calendar, 2012 is the year of the Dragon. It is believed those fortunate enough to be born under this sign are deliverers of good fortune and a master of authority. And, for the rest of the 11 Chinese Zodiac signs, there’s always FireDragonYoga. New York City Yoga master, April Martucci, has created a fierce version of yoga, which is sure to unleash the dragon in all of us.

“FireDragonYoga is where east meets west. It is a practice that is vigorous yet calming, athletic, and healing all at once. It is a unique style of yoga that involves technical aspects of anatomy and alignment, combined with a thoughtful philosophical approach, making it a practice which is fully integrated: mind, body, and spirit,” reveals April to Healthy Hollywood.

April promises her style of yoga will result in a stronger, leaner, and clearer mind – plus, it will give you the fiercest buttocks in town. NOW that’s what I want!

Even if you’re not lucky enough to live in New York and be able to take April’s class - no worries – she’s shared with Healthy Hollywood 3 tush tightening moves.

Fierce Mythical Dragon

How to: Get into a Warrior one with a side bend. Start in a low lunge pose on your mat with the right foot forward, right knee bent at 90 degrees. Make the distance between your feet approximately one-leg’s distance or 3 1/2 feet. Pivot the left foot down onto the mat at a 45-degree angle --grounding the outer edge of your left foot. Slowly rotate your hips around toward the front of your mat until both hips are squared off in front. Your hips bones will face forward as well as your shoulders. Raise the arms over the head straight like you want to touch the ceiling. Release the right hand and arm to rest on the back leg; top arm lifts up and over the head for a side stretch. Make sure your right knee stays pointing straight ahead over your right foot. Breathe normally and feel your inner warrior. Feel the removal of all your obstacles.

Key benefits: (Tones outer hips and buttocks, increases flexibility in the hips and shoulders and increases strength in legs and back).

Flying Fire Dragon

How to: From Fierce Mythical Dragon, transition to a high lunge, back heel lifted off the mat. Push off the back foot to lift the back leg. Synchronize the straightening of the front leg and the lifting of the back leg. As you lift the back leg, resist by pressing the tailbone into the pelvis. Balance on the right leg only, stretch your arms forward with hands in a prayer. Keep arms parallel to the floor and parallel to each other. The back leg as high as its hip. Legs create a 90-degree angle with the body outstretched like a T- shape.

Key benefits: (Tones the buttocks and out hips, strengthens the shoulders and muscles of the back and tones abdomen).

The Dragon’s Tail

How to: Start standing with feet hip width apart, legs straight, hands flat or on blocks if tight. Look slightly forward with a flat back.

Pick a focal point. Lift the right leg up to the right side as high as the hip if possible, so legs are making a 90-degree angle.

Repeat on the other side. Repeat above with yogi toe lock on the extended big toe and other hand flat on floor or block.

Key benefits: (Strengthens + tones the side hips - gluteus medius, adductors, increases strength in legs and back)

For more on April, check out

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