September’s issue of Thunder Press includes a 2021 review of Sturgis Bike Week and my story below. Thanks Kevin Duke (ed)., and Oliver Touron for this photo of Debbie and I heading west on I-8 closing in on Yuma, AZ. Riding for #MMIWC on the way to San Diego’s #MedicineWheelRide. Link to full issue below
Thank you Keith Uhlig at the Wausau Daily Herald for this story; and also to Pookie, Scott, and all the folks at Bull Falls Harley Davidson for allowing me to offer this important class. Come out Saturday, 10:00 am to Bull Falls HD, Yoga for Bikers happening to keep you in the saddle long-term. #bullfallshd, @bigcheese107.9, @UligK #wausaudailyherald, #superstitionhd, #motorcyclingyogig, #randyanagnostis, #bribri1119, #randyanagnostis
https://www.wausaudailyherald.com/story/news/2021/08/18/motorcycling-yogi-teach-yoga-moves-bull-falls-harley-davidson/5416236001/?fbclid=IwAR2pLbVrdx5DzvWU_-jLYCSTnHXiLswxaOTH70nn6rYUSlT4_Zvh9wzBc0E… read more...
The ‘Motorcycling Yogi’ brings his calming yoga methods to Bull Falls Harley-Davidson
— Gregory A. Ormson (@GAOrmson) August 19, 2021
Wausau Daily Herald
https://www.wausaudailyherald.com/story/news/2021/08/18/motorcycling-yogi-teach-yoga-moves-bull-falls-harley-davidson/5416236001/?fbclid=IwAR07msLeXONfmeVRqaIXKbJZACQNn1V6WN9erv05pc5SS-xCWbP-itnf1vk… read more...
Check out the venue (Buddhas Brew Coffee Café) for this event: Location for community yoga and song in Mesa
Music is an extraordinary medium with the capacity to bring the world together. Yogis think of the human body as the oldest instrument which has been called the Gatra veena (or human stringed instrument); humming or singing – especially in groups – can create healing shifts in the body, mind, and spirit. The songs are grounded in the language of soul along with repetition of words and melodies ideal for yoga events. Yoga experience is not required, a few yoga mats are available.
In the yoga tradition of reverence for all life, SAT SONG offers a magnetic blending of East and West in yoga and music with Soumya (Somi) Parthasarath and Gregory (G) Ormson.
Somi is a yoga teacher who’s studied Indian classical music in Chandler, Arizona. She practices Astanga style yoga and enjoys singing songs of the soul. G teaches yoga for bikers and has practiced music instruments and vocal from the time he joined a choir at 10. He’s a guitarist and studied sitar at the SPK Classical Indian Music Academy in Chandler, Arizona.
RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org; @motorcyclingyogiG; 480-432-2667
photo Randy Anagnostis, Salt River, Arizona… read more...
Sunday, July 25, 3:00-4:30 at Buddhas Brew Coffee Cafe
RESERVE your place RSVP email@example.com (limit 18)
Feed your soul and spirit with song, breath, and yoga led by Greg and Somi, musicians and yoga teachers forming SAT SONG in a blending of East and West in meditative moves and song. All Welcome! $15 includes a cold brew coffee or tea from Buddha’s Brew. Once you go to Buddhas Brew, you will return as a customer. Located @ 710 E Main St., Mesa. Space for 18, no experience required. #buddhasbrewcoffeecafe… read more...
“Your Dirty Little Lies,” is dedicated to us for putting up with the dirty little of the politicians; this protest music and word piece emotes that story. An Anagnostis/ Ormson piece recorded in Mesa, AZ.
I’m pleased with this music, video, and word piece edited and created by Randy Anagnostis; with collaboration from Gabriel Thorburn’s photo of mountain sheep and lyrics from the poem, “Many Names Have Never Been Spoken Here,” written by Russell Thorburn during their father-son Mohave Preserve National Parks Residency in 2013. Vocal interpretation of Thorburn’s poem by Gregory Ormson. It’s always fun to work with creative artists. Thanks Randy, Russell, and Gabe. #randyanagnostis #artistscollaboration #russellthorburn #gabethorburn #GRSound #spokenword #musicvideo #mojavenationalpreserve
… read more...
Seven days to St. Paddy’s Day
IRISH MUSIC — is there really such a thing? Yes, and Irish music takes you into its culture hook, line, and sinker. It’s known for telling powerful stories of resistance and sacrifice, land and liberty, love and loss; it cants of a thirst for the grog and flare for the poetic. Irish music is memorable for its strong rhythm and structure linked to true stories.
Come out to Starbucks on Apache Trail and Deleware from 4:00 – 5:00 pm on the south facing deck where I’m playing Irish songs on St. Patrick’s Day.
Roddy McCorley from THE MAGEES back in the days.
In describing Welsh poet and prose writer Dylan Thomas’ 1947 poem, “Do not go gentle into that good night,” Denise Levertov wrote, “it is a rapturous ode to the unassailable tenacity of the human spirit.” Here, Randy Anagnostis and I create an interpretation for today with a few lines from Thomas’ poem.
1 Few things are uncorrupted by money.
2 Naive optimism, hopeioid addiction, is killing us.
3 Education falls far below its potential if if it’s solely about job preparation: good education is more than job prep, it’s critical thinking and enlightenment regarding: science, politics, medicine, religion, history, culture and art (humanities)
4. The environment is dying because of 1 and 2 above. Our great grandchildren will curse us for our selfishnes.
5. Americans appear to most of the world as the most gullible and spoiled people on the planet.
6. Rugged individualism is neither and propagating such a myth is a lie.
7. Technology turned into a sacred savior does not mitigate the need for us to hit the “off” switch.
8. Capitalism is first an alienating force; second it is an unsustainable pursuit bound to set off revolution.
9. The food sold in stores is poisoning us, especially meat and its bloated source.
10. Guns are a visible symptom of our sickness.
11. Big agriculture, big pharmacy, big technology, big industry dominate and destroy the alternatives and in the process, trash both planet and people.
12. The Gospel of Sustained growth supports the lie and myth of Capitalism: profit for the few.
13. Withouth an incorruptible center, politicians will cave to Machivellian self-interest to the detriment of their constituents.
14. International relationships are necessary to the survival of this planet.… read more...
Sickness Givers and the Shape of Hope part I. 2:22 (Navajo)
Sickness Givers and the Shape of Hope part II. 3:01 (India)
This isn’t your ordinary biker gang.
Technically, it’s not a gang at all — just a community of denim-clad Harley enthusiasts who love to roar down an open road, and then unwind with some deep breathing and meditative poses.
“Learning to breathe, be calm, work on your body — these are all things that you practice in yoga and that can translate into motorcycling,” explains Greg Ormson, ’77, founder of the Yoga and Leather: Yoga for Bikers program at Superstition Harley-Davidson in Apache Junction, Arizona. “It’s all predicated on the notion that, if you’re at ease in the saddle, you’re going to feel better and be a much better motorcyclist.”
Ormson is a true renaissance man — a biker, a yogi, a writer, a musician, a world traveler and a student of several religions. He is a shining example of someone who doesn’t just defy stereotypes, but disproves them.
After retiring from his marketing and communications job at Northcentral Technical College in Wausau in 2012, Ormson and his partner moved to Hawaii.
But in paradise, Ormson felt mostly pain.
I saw all these signs on the street corners: yoga, yoga, yoga, I decided to try it.
He had long struggled with back issues — the result of falling off a trampoline as a child and tumbling off a roof as an adult. Years of motorcycling only made it worse.
Then, walking around the streets of Hawaii, Ormson had an epiphany.
“I saw all these signs on the street corners: yoga, yoga, yoga,” he remembers.
And what is the state of the state? For starters, a Pandemic killing millions worldwide; Armed insurrection at US Capitol; President calling to overturn Democratic election; Giant problems rolling out vaccine; Economy for average Americans failing; A crumbling infrastructure (dams, bridges, highways, small towns), across the country; Planetary overconsumption and stressed resources (water, food, land); Unfettered Earth degradation = mining and pollution (air); Climate change and waste/plastics/Nano plastics – even in our bodies; Injurious chemicals in our food and on plants; Overpopulation; Foreign policy disasters and breakdown of international cooperation; White supremacy and hate groups; Gun violence; Attacks on education and humanities; Machiavellian leadership. . . should I go on? Do not skip to denial or optimism; rather, understand the grave trouble we and the world are in. This is no conspiracy bullshit, it’s just the truth. Don’t run away or put God on it. It’s our mess.
The myth of a free republic for all seems to be a fairy tale falling under the weight of a hubris-fired dream married to corrupt ambition. This myth is fueled by a rabble chanting – USA USA USA – a prideful slog morphing into destructive action.
Diversity, nature’s fail-safe, is rejected by the fearful. The mob thinks they are losing something, but they can’t describe what it is. And how will the rise and fall of a once-great country work?
It will work like humanity and the planet, all three evolving on the same arc where the end is written in the means. And the means of our present say something sinister and deadly about the ends of our personal, corporate, and planetary journey.… read more...
Artists’ respond, aiming to align wonder, word, and music. They lean into imagining what the tree sees in relationships, in children, and in backyard dreams. Thorburn’s tree is a witness to life in the yard, the house, in the sky above, and the buckling sidewalk below; the whole tree-is-us in our tangled roots and bent branches, our rancors and revelries, and our brittle bark tattooed by the scars of our days.
We are like every tree and its intangible roots beneath the sidewalk, reaching from yard and house to neighborhood and back again. Enmeshed below ground, trees know things and their hidden network chronicles the backyard’s rich saga: kids climbing and laughing in the branches, people in houses looking back at the tree from behind windows, and the green sky of aurora borealis above.
In our winter of pandemic and discontent, the tree is abandoned by yellowing leaves born away by freezing winds, shivering branches, and dropped to their winter-burial grounds “Everything I know I’ve learned from trees,” a friend from Michigan wrote to me the week before Christmas. I love trees too, but not everyone does; and his note reminded me of the politician who said, “When you’ve seen one redwood you’ve seen ’em all.”
I pity those who see every tree the same. It’s a different kind of poverty from the ‘poverty of spirit,’ which the Gospels praise. Bereft of wonder, one is left with a forlorn poverty of being. Such a fool, unable to appreciate music, art, poetry, or trees, may have a heart pumping lifeblood through his/her veins and arteries, but they are dull in their feeling function, incapable of beholding a Christmas tree or any tree in wonder and awe.… read more...
It’s good to see your leadership taking steps to become inclusive. I applaud it, and think it’s long overdue. My mentor taught me the power of inclusion in 1975 and this has, in part, driven my life decisions including my failures, successes, and priorities. Harley Davidson, you’ve been kind-of-a-closed club to a lot of people in the past, and you have catching up to do, but you are on the right road to foster change and diversity.
It can’t be news to leadership that few traditional Harley Davidson riders listen to Tupak Shakur. Most would probably categorically dismiss him and his music, and not many would recognize a Tupak rap. So when the December issue of The Enthusiast arrived – I was shocked to read several lines from Tupak printed on the full p.5. (right). Looking back at The Enthusiast covers from 1916 up to 2003, the lack of diversity in that magazine – compared to your emerging priorities – is striking.
Starting with HOG editor Matt King’s welcoming letter for issue 48, in 2019, I saw a new emphasis and read that Harley Davidson’s goal was to “grow ridership by as much as 2 million new riders by (in 10-years) 2029.” It signaled a change in your publications and a new outreach to diverse audiences by including: young people, women, and non-white riders not only in photographs but also in stories.
One large subtitle in the article, “Coming to America,” a diversity feature story, quoted Freddie Franklin, a Milwaukee rider: “Harley Davidson has brought all ethnicities, races, genders, and cultures together, and it’s just been an incredible experience.”… read more...
If my friends could get out of their summer houses, we met at the diamond to sharpen the angles of our wild fastballs. The guts of our dirty brown ball unraveled like a tongue, wagging at the glove skipping by, hurling past the catcher in angry air like an exclamation point.
The neighborhood boys and I played in Little League as the North Menomonie Orioles. We met on green fields and became friends stitched together by bonds of wood and leather.
We tried—and failed—to throw a curveball, cursing the cowhide and dreaming of the day we’d be big and twist a ball that skipped away from trouble. To be young and play ball allowed me to dream big.
Summer passed quickly in Wisconsin, and every game was a life event I couldn’t miss. I lived to swing a bat, and if a bus filled with ballplayers drove by my house, I raced to Wakanda Park to compete against other kids for foul balls during games.
Recorded with Audacity, Gregory Ormson lyrics and Washburn D-Series DADGAD guitar, played through Boss Acoustic Singer Pro Amp; keyboard by Randy Anagnostis on Yamaha PB125 with Focus Scarlet Gen 3 Audio Interface. One of several Anagnostis/Ormson original song collaborative pieces.
VIDEO link https://youtu.be/NfClYOCX3xA… read more...
My daughter returned from a study trip to Nicaragua several years ago and gave me this small painting from a local artist. Today, sunlight fell on it from behind so it appeared as if lights were on inside.
In the moment, it reminded me of Lighten our Darkness: Toward an Indigenous Theology of the Cross, by Douglas John Hall (January, 1980), a book I read in systematic theology that expanded my apprehension of the human condition and informed my interpretations for many years.
In these years, when my developmental task is to steer a way between generativity and despair, the reminder from Hall from many years ago is to lighten the darkness in the midst of darkness.
A breakthrough by the light – no matter how insignificant it seems – moves my hands to caress the wheel of generativity and hold to hope. A simple painting and sunlight; reminders to lighten our darkness within and without.… read more...
Phoenix area video including gentlewomen riders (story here)
We’re asking all our friends to share this video and share widely by liking, and promoting it with this hashtag: #dprdapperchallenge
Putting the fun in fundraising for a good cause, classic and vintage motorcyclists from around the world have ridden on the last Sunday in September since 2012 to raise funds and awareness for prostate cancer research and men’s mental health.” In the US alone, DGR has raised 24.5 million dollars over the last 8 years. Men’s Health Issues addressed by the DGR are:
*MENTAL HEALTH* *SUICIDE PREVENTION*
*PROSTATE CANCER* *TESTICULAR CANCER*
One of DGR’s primary concerns this year, due to COVID-19, is the effect of social isolation on mental health. Studies show those who are socially connected in a positive way share a better outlook for well-being and mental health.
Because of COVID-19, the worldwide 2020 DGR ride – on September 27 – will be different this year. Everyone will ride alone but share it virtually as a way of riding alone but together.
To promote this, the DGR challenged riders from around the world to submit a video highlighting the 2020 theme: “Riding Solo Together.” Randy Anagnostis and I put together a team of riders and produced this video as part of the DGR 2020 challenge contest.
Our Phoenix area video is now submitted (thanks to Randy for his filming, editing, organizing, and original music score). Thanks also to the riders, to Kyle (Eyes Across the Sky) for the drone photography, to Chris and his partners at Eleven 10 Moto Garage, and to Paul and partners at Phoenix Triumph.… read more...
מאת Gregory A. Ormson. A writer and yogi from Israel asked to translate my yin yoga article for publication there. The copy below is it for my Hebrew reading friends. Yoga writing now published in five languages.
כתבה שהוא פרסם בפייסבוק ב- 27 ביולי 2020
למתבונן מבחוץ yin yoga נראית תירגול קל ופשוט אך זה ממש הכל חוץ מתירגול קל. מבחוץ נראה שהמתרגלים ישנים, או נחים בכדי להכין את הנשימה שלהם לתרגול ממריץ שעלול לבוא אחר כך. במצב “מנוחה” זה משהו אכן קורה. אבל זה לא שינה; גם זה לא תרגיל חימום לסדרה נמרצת הבאה.
תירגול של yin yoga מוביל לפתיחה פנימית מלאה שלוקח זמן להתנסות ולהבין אותה באופן מלא.
אחרי ש Gregory Ormson התחיל לתרגל yin yoga הוא הבין שהאתגר ב yinהוא נפשי ופסיכולוגי. הוא למד שהעקרונות היסודיים של yin שהם ויתור וכניעה – הם המפתח להשפעה הפסיכולוגית, הפיזית והיעילות של התרגול על ידי: כניעה, שחרור, וויתור. מבחינה פסיכולוגית, הכניעה ביוגה היא המפתח לכל דבר.
מזמין אתכם להתבונן פנימה, ותמתינו לכך שהקול הפנימי שלכם יומר לכם מה צריכים לרפא. לשחרר את ההתכווצויות בצוואר, בלסת, בכתפיים, את האי הנוחות בגב, ובקדמת הגוף. קחו נשימה ארוכה ושחררו אותה לאט. תרגישו איך בגוף משוחרר ומקורקע. למתרגל yin yoga, ככה זה מרגיש על בסיס קבוע.
השיעור yin yoga מביא אותנו לתחום של healing בו אנחנו משחררים משהו שאנו מגנים עליו או במשהו שאנו מתגוננים ממנו . זה מוחזק בגופנו, בפאסיה שלנו ובמוחנו. ב yin אנו מוזמנים לשחרר מתח, להפנות את המודעות שלנו פנימה ולהיפתח בכניעה ובאמונה ללב yin yoga המרפאת הזו. “… read more...
“And I have felt a presence that disturbs me with the joy
Of elevated thoughts; a sense sublime
Of something far more deeply interfused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean and the living air,
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man:
A motion and a spirit, that impels
All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
And rolls through all things.”
OM Yoga Magazine has just released their March issue including the 85th of my #yogainspirationals. Thank you OM Yoga Mag.In the Phoenix east valley, this magazine arrives two weeks after publication in the UK. In each issue you'll find yoga insights in these areas: OM Body, OM For Men, OM Fashion, OM Mind, OM Spirit, OM Living, OM Family, OM Actions, OM Teacher Zone, OM Travel. Check it out.… read more...
In the yoga tradition of reverence for life, SAT SONG provides music for participation in a magnetic blending of East and West grounded in the language of soul. Through song chant and breath focus, repetitive words and musical phrases are well-suited to accompany yin yoga classes along with yoga workshops, events, retreats, music events, and festivals. SAT SONG is Gregory Ormson (G) and Soumya (Somi) Parthasarathy.
Somi comes from a long line of yoga and classical Indian music; Somi studies Indian classical music in Chandler, Arizona and practices Astanga style yoga. She enjoys blending traditions in music, lending her voice to raise songs of the soul. G teaches yoga and has practiced music instruments and vocal from the time he joined a choir at 10. He studies sitar at the SPK Classical Indian Music Academy in Chandler, Arizona.
The words SAT and SONG, in Sanskrit and English respectively, suggests the nature of hybrid music provided by Somi and G ——————————————————————————————————————————————————————-Contact information for SAT SONG: firstname.lastname@example.org; 808-640-4624; #motorcyclingyogiG; @GAOrmson.
Video and photography at the Salt River by Randy Anagnostis; recording by Raven Studios, Mesa, Arizona.… read more...
Thanks Superstition Harley Davidson for this 80 second video. See how yoga is similar to, but has one important difference from other movement oriented activities like motorcycling, judo, and ballet.… read more...
“Rough Road? Breathe . . .” Just published in H.O.G. Magazine. I’ve been reading H.O.G. Magazine since 2002 when I joined the national H.O.G. organization. This is the first time they’ve ever published a story on yoga, or yoga for riders. H.O.G. riders and all of us realize the times are a changin’ and if we are fluid we’re better able to adapt. Breathing well and being fluid is what we do in yoga. Check it out bikers. Thanks to H.O.G., (ed., Matt King), and Superstition H-D in Apache Junction, AZ.
Motorcyclists love to ride, they want to ride longer, and they want to ride skillfully. That’s why I started Yoga & Leather: Yoga for Bikers at Superstition Harley Davidson in Arizona. The story is now published in issue 51 of H.O.G. (Harley Owner’s Group) magazine in digital format accessed by HOG members.
Two pages of the hard copy I’ll pass it along here. Thank you Matt, ed., H.O.G. Magazine. Get your copy of H.O.G. magazine for updates from the world of H.O.G. and Harley-Davidson. it includes riding tips, vintage bike notes, mechanical advice, riding tales, and stories of the next ride.
Over the last 15 months, Soumya and I have been practicing music of the soul by working on bhakti music, blending traditions of the East and West. Our band Sat Song (truth song) has a first event Thursday night in Tempe. We’ll perform for the 10 year Anniversary Celebration of the Arizona Interfaith Power and Light organization. This is an organization demonstrating much needed cooperation and respect in our day of division along religious and cultural lines. I’m pleased to be part of this event. Wish us well!
Author D. H. Hickman, in a Brevity Blog, writes about Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, first published in 1974. She admits that she doesn’t like motorcycles – and calls them “an annoying piece of thunderous metal.” But when she re-read the book, in silence and slow time, she captured a sense of what the author, Robert M Pirsig, was getting at as he rode west from Minneapolis toward California with his 11 year old son through the haunting and wide-open lands of South Dakota.
She notes how Pirsig depicted “The psychic impact of space and empty roads, noting he felt ‘lulled’ by tranquil thoughts of ‘wind sweeping . . . across open fields of the prairie.”
The process of slow reading, like slow, deep-breathing yoga, or long meditative rides on a bike, are “a creative, surprisingly effective, way to row against the fierce current of trends, the monotonous rush to get somewhere, and the exhausting promotion of _______ . . . ” You and I can fill in the blank.
We worship speed only to become frayed. We strive for efficiency only to become inhuman(e).
Bikers looking to engage the brain might check out this book. Hickman describes that she read it a few pages at a time. Maybe that’s something that will work for you and work for me. Motorcycling at ease, moving and breathing at ease, how about Zen and the art of life maintenance. It’s about being at ease.
With appreciation for your summary of YOGA & LEATHER: Yoga for Bikers (Starting Oct. 9th)
” . . . to improve the health and wellbeing of motorcyclists.” Yep, that’s it!
If ANY OF YOU have interest in Yoga for Bikers, a program at Superstition Harley Davidson now in its third year, here is a reminder of October’s yoga and bike events:
Wednesday October 9, 4:30 pm in the Eagle’s Nest
Wednesday October 23, 4:30 pm in the Eagle’s Nest
Sunday October 27, 10:30 am starting in the West Parking lot at SHD
Each year there are slight changes. This year, we’ll focus on a breath-centric class and slow movements in ease.
The “STRETCH RIDE” will take place the LAST Sunday of every month, starting at 10:30. We’ll ride a short distance to a green or desert space and there spend 15-20 minutes in breath awareness and quiet. Then we use the bikes for a few “stretch poses.” Motorcycles are perfect for this, they are stable props but also transfer us from place to place. The “stretches” are portable too.
What you do in Yoga for Bikers:
This beginner level class is offered to riders to stretch the areas where we feel tightness: hips, shoulders, back, and neck.
The purpose is to keep riders in the saddle longer by working gently toward flexibility and balance. This means longer at a time, but more importantly, longer for life.
The side benefit of all yoga is learning to be at ease in the midst of stress.… read more...
YOGA AND LEATHER: Yoga for Bikers begins its third year in October at the Eagles’ Nest (outdoor second deck) at Superstition Harley Davidson. Two Wednesday’s a month, riders and anyone interested will gather for simple movement and breath work. This beginner level class is open to all. This is offered to riders to stretch the areas where we feel tightness: hips, shoulders, back, and neck. This year we will work more with breath and movement in ease.
The purpose is to keep riders in the saddle longer by working gently toward flexibility and balance. This means longer at a time, but more importantly, longer for life. The side benefit of all yoga is learning to be at ease in the midst of stress. This happens through breath work and deliberate movement.
Here are the dates for October yoga and leather at SHD in the Eagle’s Nest (a large outdoor deck above the dealership)
October 9 at 4:30 pm
October 23 at 4:30 pm
The “stretch ride” will be held October 20, at 10:30 am. You’ll hear more about that soon.
PUBLISHING NEWS RE: YOGA AND LEATHER
The AZ Rider Motorcycle News (now in its 21st year) will also include a short story in October via Internet link (issue number 239), where you can read more about Yoga and Leather. Thanks Betsy and Bruce!
July’s issue of YOGA Magazine from London featured the Yoga and Leather here at SHD in its cover shot and in its feature story with a five page coverage including photos.
HOG Magazine (Harley Owner’s Group) will be covering this story in their November issue.… read more...
I took part in the world’s largest charitable motorcycle event for owners of classic and vintage styled bikes on Sunday September 29th, 2019. This event, called the Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride, brings together over 113,000 well dressed riders on sweet, small bikes raising 5 million dollars in 700+ cities for men’s health across 110+ countries.
The goal for the once a year DGR is to raise awareness and funds for prostate cancer research – and men’s mental health – on behalf of charity partner the Movember Foundation. Next year, I’ll see if anyone wants to join me for this worthy cause and fun ride through Phoenix. A few photos tell the story of this event, which started at Four Till Four Coffee in Scottsdale with 218 registered bikes. It ended at Sazerac in downtown Phoenix.
REASONS to ride, or to donate:
It feels good to contribute to a good cause.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men, taking 307,000 every year.
75 percent of all suicides are men too, taking one every minute (510,000) each year, most of them in the 20-39 age range.
Why don’t you get your CAFE RACER out of the barn and join me and over 200 others next year as Distinguished Gentlemen and Gentlewomen ride for a cause! AND . . . if you don’t have a cafe racer or vintage bike . . . rent a scooter 🙂
(Colchester, Essex Co., UK) for including “Conducting the Awesome,” in your October HOT YOGA special.
This magazine is ‘with it.’ Last month, they celebrated their 100th issue, and have published extensively on inclusivity, body positivity, yin yoga, retreats, men in yoga, Western Yoga, and breath training as the new yoga.
Breath Training is what I do, having just completed two yoga workshops in Wisconsin and Michigan on “Yoga Breath, Breath of Life.” Breath training is a new – but very old – emphasis growing from the needs of Westerners. By engaging the breath, we learn to calm ourselves in a conflicted world. My workshop is integrative: meaning it includes philosophy, linguistics, biology, mobilization of prana, execution of the bandas, the embodiment of asana, a practice of mindful release, and attentive work on drishti.
At my teaching site, Superstition Harley Davidson in Apache Junction, AZ., when motorcycling yogis focus on breathing, when they hear sitar gently pinging above the roaring big twin engines, and when they receive my final salutation, breathe deep and exhale a final OM, it begins to look and sound like something not heard or seen before; indeed, Western yoga is changing (practice at a HD dealership proves it) and slowly taking on a unique form and function. For me, it starts with the building block of it all – BREATH.This fall, I’ll bring even more breath training to my teaching at YOGA AND LEATHER (Superstition Harley Davidson) in October as we start year 3 of Yoga for Bikers.
If anyone wants to learn more about this focus on breath, I’m ready to conduct a two hour workshop for you – with original music on sitar and guitar – “Yoga Breath, Breath of Life.”… read more...
A memorable month on the home ground to see many family and friends. Two Wisconsin trips with Marquette, Michigan in between sweetened by literary frosting. The last nine days, Debbie came north to share in the good times.
Thanks everyone for food and drink, word and music, for yoga and breath. Until next time, namaste to all you birds in the cold north: Bree Ommon, Ashley Prinsen Jason Prinsen, Brian Ormson, Tamara Kay Ormson, Laurel Gyland Kieffer, Robyn Bretl, lightbodY, Paul Zollver, Eric Schubring Russell Thorburn, Amy Howko, John Howko, Dylan Trost, Peter J Gummerson, Jennifer Taylor, Nathan Taylor, TuliVesi Yoga Paul Lehmberg James C Daly Tee Chuppie Daly Jon Shea, Nick Hoen, Chris King Karla Lodholz, Michael John Brancato Natalie Rodehaver, Melinda Rodehaver, and people off FB: Tim Ormson, Mitch Ormson, Chris Howko, Jonathan Johnson, Ken Baker and Martha Bush, EG, and Riley.
Many thanks again to Jennifer and Nathan of Tulivesi Yoga in Marquette, to gummersound studio in Marquette, Russ, Johnathan and Dylan at The Crib, and Robyn Bretyl at LIghtbody Yoga in Wausau!!!
Photos: Marquette, Michigan, Wausau and Spooner, Wisconsin. To Daly’s of Wausau, thanks for the blues music by Minneapolis based Joy Ann Parker band and Michael Charles, Chicago blues band.
https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipO-JyAvr5KK6sJKHM-WPqoLzhyBnfSNFAkIUATuLlsLLXVAPTYN6hv9jUmAJAmk8A?key=Mk5tZUVkaTliZV9HbmVlUEhrWGJGU3BHeDA5aXBn… read more...
One good thing about Facebook is that every now and then someone reaches from the past and makes contact with us in the present. This is the case from someone that contacted me yesterday and I’m glad he did.
Today (Aug. 13) is Kristen and Greg’s 25th wedding anniversary. Back then, I was the officiant for their wedding when I was working as a clergy for the Lutheran church and my assignment was to Northern Michigan University. Marquette was my home for 12 years, and two of my children were born there. Except for the cold – which I can’t stand – it was the best place I ever lived.
Along with his Facebook note, Greg sent one photo from his and Kristen’s wedding ceremony. I had never seen it, and it brought back many good memories of my time as a YOOPER in Upper Michigan.
Greg reminded me that I played my ceremonial wood duck drum as part of their wedding. Playing a drum wasn’t that far out of bounds -since I started drumming with a set at 14 – but I made the drum I used in their wedding and have used it in many ceremonies. The oak body for the drum came from a large tree that had been struck by lightning. The deer skin on top was from the last deer my dad had shot in Indian-head Country of Northwest Wisconsin.
Text below is from “Anchors,” a piece about drumming.
From early on, I heard text and sub-text in drums and memorized tom-strike patterns, rim hits on snare, and foot work for the high hat.… read more...
YOGA & LEATHER: A New Road for Bikers
Every yogi is the same. But every yogi has been injured in their own way. Debbie McGregor, passionate yogi and motorcyclist, was first injured at age 11. It happened in a rodeo mishap when she was locked in a cramped chute with a panicked horse. A broken back sustained in a motorcycle accident in her early 30’s became major injury number two, and she suffered a broken neck in a car accident during her early 50’s.
“When I read about YOGA AND LEATHER: Yoga for Bikers,” she said, “I couldn’t believe it; something combining my two passions, I had to come.”
After her car accident, Debbie was told she’d be paralyzed from the neck down, but she resolved to walk and was determined to ride her Harley Davidson motorcycle again. She invested in physical therapy and added yoga as a daily routine. Three years after the accident, Debbie is doing yoga and motorcycling around the country. “It’s unexplainable how much yoga does in the path of healing. The more I do, the more I want and the more I heal,” she said.
Paul, a 79 year old retired Chicago police officer, is another dedicated rider of Harley Davidson motorcycles but new to yoga. Like Debbie, he found his way to YOGA AND LEATHER, and considers it healing balm and an island of peace.
Recently, Paul’s 900 pound motorcycle tipped over and landed on his foot. He hobbled into class wearing big boots and blue jeans, but did what he could. “I need it, it’s good.… read more...
Every day, evaluate your riding. It’s a habit I picked up from my days as a MSF rider/coach in Hawaii. I’d tell students one way to improve is to ask themselves how they did on the road when they were home and the bike was parked. And then I started doing that in a deliberate way.
When I looked honestly at my riding, I noticed that I made mistakes. Mostly, they were mistakes of assumption or judgment. I’d assume too often that the person in the right-turn lane really was going to make a right turn. Sometimes auto drivers change their minds at the last minute (can you believe it) and veer into another lane. If you are in that lane, riding alongside them, you might be hit. I’ve assumed too many times and there is my point.
It’s not hard to evaluate our riding, and if you need an idea, imagine you have a 16 year old son or daughter taking up riding and one day they ask you for riding tips.
Do you have some to share … and I mean fresh tips? If not, it may be time to re-evaluate your assumptions and actions. Believe me, I’m not a perfect rider, but I’m working at getting better by ongoing evaluation.
Skill development is important, but even more important is judgment on the road. We may think we have great riding skills that allow us to get out of dangerous situations, but the rider with great judgment skills is better prepared for the road because their judgment will not let them get into a situation where they have to rely on great riding skills for escape.… read more...
For National Poetry Month, the last four lines from “If You Knew.”
What would people look like
If we could see them as they are;
soaked in honey, stung and swollen,
reckless, pinned against time?
This is the last session this year at Superstition Harley Davidson in the Eagle’s Nest.
SHD located at 2910 W. Apache Trail, AJ, AZ.
Breathe in ease, move in ease, be at ease on both your bike and your life.
Thank you BAD YOGI MAGAZINE for publishing yogainspirationals 75. Read and share.
Thank you BAD YOGI MAGAZINE for publishing my 75th #YogaInspirationals.
This one is not an easy read, and not many places wanted to take it. But the editor agreed with me that sometimes a publisher ought to also challenge a reader, and not just feed them simple cookie-cutter articles like so many we see today e.g., “5 Ways to (whatever).”
If we stop expanding our vocabulary, quit reading to learn, or forego seeking out something new, our lives can easily fall into a rut. Then the mind and body go on autopilot and the spiral down begins.
Thank you to Bad Yogi Magazine, joining the following 15 publications sharing my visions of yoga, music, and wellness: Om Yoga and Lifestyle Magazine, Asana Journal, Yoga International, elephant journal, Yoganect, Sivana East, The Health Orange, Hello Yoga, TribeGrow, DoYouYoga, Yogi Times, Seattle Yoga News, The Yoga Blog, Boa Yoga and ArizonaRiderSouthwest.
Thank you #YOGANECT for publishing yogainspirationals number 74.
During my seventh year practicing yoga I started learning the sitar.
Immediately I realized it was a hard instrument to play and its technology is ancient: there’s a huge gap between frets and the strings which are painful on the fingers; the metal sitar pic winds tightly on the finger and pinches; the instrument’s lightweight strings go out of tune easily and there are 21 of them; but most of all, the traditional playing style requires sitting on the floor with the left leg crossed under the right while the sitar neck rests over the right thigh with the sound gourd perched on top of the left foot. This position is hard on the left knee, back, legs, hips, and both ankles.
At one point during my practice in the last few months, I started doing yoga before playing. I needed to set my legs, hips, and back at ease. When I did this first, I realized I could sit longer and concentrate better and my yoga practice tied directly to sitar practice became my daily ritual.
This two-step approach to sitar practice – beginning with yoga – became my entre into the world of classical Indian music. I now view yoga as my commencement ritual, and I won’t even try playing sitar without first doing yoga, or at the very least, until after breath work. Yoga and sitar, including savasana, tune me up for my day; now I hesitate to go out in public before this commencement.
A NEW TAKE ON AN OLD SKILL
I sang in a boys’ choir at age 10 and once performed with a small group at the World’s Fair in New York at age 11.… read more...
The last Sunday of the month (March 31 and April 28) meet 10:30 am in the west parking lot at Superstition HD. On the 31st, we’ll ride about 20 minutes to a private spot close to the Superstition Mountains.
There we’ll spend 20 minutes in mindful presence and do a simple breathing exercise. Then we’ll walk to our parked bikes where I’ll demonstrate – and you practice – six ways to use your motorcycle as a prop for stretching.
The entire ride and stretch movements will only take about 75 minutes; afterwards, people can go their own way.
This is not an all-out yoga class, but a way to adapt yoga movements to parking lot stretching with the help of the bike. It’s something you can do on your tours and rides. No special clothing or props required.
The motorcycle is a steady prop, but also movable which means we can use it anywhere; and that’s the beauty of the stretch ride, where we focus on both conscious breath (with awareness) and easy stretch moves designed to keep us riding longer.
I hope to see you on March 31 and/or April 28 as we collect our place and presence in the midst of busy lives.
ps The stretch ride will also include a few safety tips I’ve learned as a MSF rider/coach. It never hurts to have a reminder about safe riding so that we can stay in the saddle.
In this episode of Here You Are Wausau (click link) Dino Corvino and I discuss writing and yoga, breath, ego, truth, ayurveda, teaching, and journaling along with people and places of Wausau.
I’ll forever see you (Dino) as the weird kid eating chickpeas from a can in the UW Milwaukee student union. Click link and listen to get the full story. WARNING: Some adult AF language.
SHOUT OUTS TO: Basil Restaurant, Limericks Pub, Malarkeys Pub, NTC, Everest HS, Superstition Harley Davidson, Buffalo Springfield, Community Soul Yoga, Croix Croga Yoga, Lightbody Yoga, Gilbert Yoga, The Magees, sitar, satyagraha, Yoga and Leather, kids yoga, prana, agni, vayu, healing, and shout outs to: Debbie Iozzo, Robyn Bretl, Jim Daly, Kirsten Holmsen, Cory Holm, Blake Opal-Wahoske, Tyler Vogt, Nick Hoen, Jon Shea, Soumya Parthasarathy, Cassandra Wallick, Dan Meyer, kids yoga, Everest Family Fitness Fest, Asana Journal, slow down and breathe, freediving, hawaii, India, Ted Roe and freediving Hawaii, Mysore, India and the Calcutta sitar.
Thanks Eric Sorensen and Dino for @hereYouAreWausau… read more...
Shipra Saraogi (pictured) at the Usery Mountain Regional Park, Mesa, Arizona.
#MotorcyclingyogiG teaches yoga for riders (YOGA AND LEATHER) at Superstition Harley-Davidson in Apache Junction, Arizona. His classes demonstrate to riders how they might use their bike for a prop to stretch when taking a break from the road with the goal of keeping riders in the saddle.
Shipra Saraogi, yoga teacher and performance artist from New York City, stopped by Superstition Harley-Davidson and the Arizona desert for some warm up-on Greg’s 2016 HD Road King. This not recommend or taught in Yoga and Leather.
March 31, 2019 is the date for our next “Stretch Ride,” in Arizona led by #motorcyclingyogiG, Gregory Ormson. Meet at Superstition Harley Davidson 10:30 am. Ride to the desert, stretch, breathe, pose.
“Conducting the Awesome: What I’ve Learned from 7 Years of Hot Yoga” is live on elephant journal.
This is my 11th article for elephant journal since September, 2014, and the latest installment (73) of what I call YogaInspirationals, a collection of my yoga writing published by elephant and 12 other national and international magazines, Websites, and public social media sites.
I write lyric nonfiction and hybrid, and right now I’m pitching my latest work – a hybrid nonfiction piece – on drumming, and things that happen when I go to a rustic cabin in northern Wisconsin I share with my brothers. I call that place Oz no matter what roads I take to get there. It’s Oz to me even without a wizard, a Toto, or a Dorothy.
Thank you for comments, support, resharing, etc., Let’s keep on conducting the awesome in yoga, in writing, and in life.