Opening Up This April
There are a few common theories behind April’s naming. One of the most common and probable is that the name is rooted in the Latin Aprilis which is derived from the Latin word aperire, meaning “to open” – which could be a reference to the opening or blossoming of flowers and trees, a common occurrence throughout the month of April in the northern hemisphere.

At Sukha this month, we'd like to emphasize opening up- in all aspects of life. Open up physically by practicing poses that lift the heart and open the chest or hips. Open your mind by trying something new, and stepping out of your day to day routine. Open up emotionally and clear your good space of any bottled up feelings.

We encourage you to open up this month- blossom, perhaps, into a version of yourself that maximizes your strengths and capabilities. As always, Sukha is here to help; try a crescent lunge this month to practice opening up.
This heart-opening pose is perfect for this month- when you are open and available, you are present to truly give and receive love.
Crescent Lunge

From Downward-Facing Dog, step the right foot between the hands by the right thumb. Stay on the ball of the back foot, stacking the right heel over the ball of the right foot, and raise the upper body toward the ceiling. Stack the shoulders over the hips with the right knee at a 90 degree angle. Squeeze the back thigh muscles to the bone and internally rotate the back thigh to keep the hips square. Reach both arms overhead and hook the thumbs. Take your gaze to the thumbs and start to reach up first and then back as you move into a back bend. It is important to keep the pelvic floor lifting, belly button drawing in, and the legs firm as the foundation of the pose, which will allow for a deeper back bend. Hold for 5 breaths. Come back to center and release hands to the floor, stepping back into high Plank and then back to Downward-Facing Dog. Repeat on the other side.
Community Spotlight:
Clarissa's Story + MS Awareness Week and Walk MS
According to the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, it is estimated that 400,000 people in the United States alone have MS. Living life each day, as simple as that sounds, can suddenly feel like a much bigger challenge. MS is a disease affecting the brain and spinal cord, in which the immune system attacks the nerves of the body and causes disruption of the communication signals between the body and the brain. It can be painful and physically draining for those affected. While research is still being done on how to stop and reverse the progression of MS, there are various symptomatic treatments available. Yoga can actually be a remarkable treatment for physical symptoms of MS.

Sukha's very owner yoga teacher, Clarissa, lives with MS and has an incredible testimony about how yoga has provided relief for her MS symptoms. Yoga, according to Clarissa, has changed her life. As a teacher of Adaptive Yoga at Sukha, Clarissa also has the opportunity to help change the lives of others and help them experience how yoga can be a remarkable tool for physical transformation, no matter the challenges. She also serves as an MS ambassador locally to help raise awareness and encourage others to get involved in the mission to find a cure.

Hear Clarissa share the benefits of the Adaptive Yoga Program in her own words by watching our video below. MS Awareness Week was March 11th through the 17th, but it isn't too late to get involved. Learn more about MS from The National MS Society and participate in World MS Day on May 30th. This month, you can also show your support for Clarissa and others living with MS by joining us for Walk MS, at Beyer Park on April 14th. Together, we can beat MS. Sign up for Walk MS here.
Adaptive Yoga for MS, RA, & other Movement Disorders

This class emphasizes the importance of breath and self-awareness while embracing life’s ever changing moments and provides an encouraging environment for students with movement disorders and limitations to focus on strengthening the body, improving posture, and increasing flexibility.

"Because of my MS I can't run, walk, or bike, necessarily, but this class is something I can do. My flexibility and range of motion have improved along with my strength." - Kelly Rydquist

"My son has Cerebral Palsy and is legally blind. His caregiver comes with us to Clarissa's class and his muscle relaxation has improved greatly. After he takes Clarissa's class, he takes a long nap at home, and seems to feel energized. I would recommend this class to others with a similar problem." - Cindy Lou
Vino & Vinyasa: A Perfect Pairing and Your New Favorite Local Event
We certainly hope you joined us for the first ever Vino & Vinyasa event, Namasté Rosé on March 27th. If you missed it, don't fret! There's more events to come in this exciting collaboration between Sukha Studios and Gallo Winery.

Our intention is to pair yoga with wine and bring community together. Come unwind with a slow flow yoga class followed by a wine tasting with Stephanie Gallo. We hope you enjoy this wonderful merger of movement and mindfulness paired with community and celebration. Learn more about Vino & Vinyasa upcoming events on our website and watch the video below for a better taste of what's yet to come.
Love Your Mother Earth

Local Events in April to Inspire an Earth-friendly Attitude
April 22nd is Earth Day, a holiday created to help the U.S. take positive actions to benefit the environment and our world as a whole. Celebrating Earth Day can be both fun and easy- get involved with others on the local-level and have fun celebrating our beautiful planet:

Love Modesto - this annual community service day will be held on April 21st, beginning at 8AM. Gather some friends and sign up together to benefit the community. It's a good feeling to pass by a park and know that it is clean and safe for kids because of your hard work, or that our streets downtown are brighter with artistic murals rather than graffiti. Sign up by clicking Love Modesto.

Earth Day in the Park - Modesto's 28th annual Earth Day in the Park celebration will be held on April 21st, from 10AM-4PM. This event is fun for all, with exhibitors, food, kids' arts and crafts, music, and more. It's a great way to learn about "being green" and the various initiatives going on locally. Learn more at

The Modesto Farmers Market- Earth Day Celebration - Looking for an event that is a little more low-key? The Modesto Farmers Market will be held as usual on April 21st, but will feature lots of recyclable crafts for kids and a local musician. Hours are 8-1PM.
Upcoming Workshops

Leslie Howard Presents:
Alignment is Sexy: Yoga is an Energy Management System (April 7th)

Like a car that operates most efficiently when in good alignment, the body is our vehicle for carrying us around. This workshop will focus on the foundations of poses and good architecture. The effectiveness of each pose depends on the groundwork and the alignment of that which has come before it. During this workshop, we will look at basic poses and then apply them as the foundation of more challenging and complex poses.

Leslie Howard Presents: Yoga for Cranky Hips (April 7th)

This alignment based class is a slow, methodical and safe way of working the legs to create space in and around the hip sockets. Leslie addresses how to use yoga poses and yoga props to increase space, flexibility and strength in the hips. You will find familiar yoga poses using props and done a focus on the relationship between the legs and pelvis. Pain in the hips can have many causes. But whatever the root cause, most people are sitting in chairs or cars more than ever before. Sitting with the legs at a 90 degree angle from your torso decreases the amount of space in the front of the hip sockets, brings the femurs forward in the hip socket and restricts blood flow to the pelvis. We come to yoga to undo some of our postural bad habits. However, we can actually exacerbate hip pain if we are doing our poses without mindfulness. The approach in this class is to encourage the femurs to be deeper towards the back of their sockets, and to practice the poses with a new spotlight on the hip joint.

Leslie will be conducting a Q&A and book signing before the workshops from 10:30-11am.

Individual workshop: $50

Double the education, double the fun:
Both workshops for $90 total

Sign up on our website under the Anatomy and Wellness Academy tab.
SUKHA's Sweet Deals:
Hats and Sunglasses

Be stylish & practical as the sunny days of Spring approach!

Whether you join us for the MS Walk or an Earth Day event, protect your eyes and skin from harmful UV rays by rocking a pair of sunglasses or a baseball cap from Sukha. Readers can get 10% off a hat or pair of sunglasses by using the promo AprilNews at checkout!

All About Spring Rolls: What Spring Roll are You?

In the Eastern Jin Dynasty in China (265-420 A.D.), thin cakes with vegetables were made on the first day of spring and were called "spring dish". The spring dishes evolved into spring rolls and continued to change to include all types of spring rolls.

Now, spring rolls are taking up all shapes and tastes and are beautifully being expanded upon in the blogger community. From banana Nutella spring rolls to BLT summer rolls, to cucumber and avocado spring rolls, the internet seems to be exploding with creative ideas to wrap-up the spring roll style.

Take this quiz to see what modernized spring roll type best matches your personality!

1) What do you prefer: Mat Pilates/Barre, Pilates Reformer, Yoga, or Hot Yoga?
  • Mat Pilates/Barre (5 points)
  • Pilates Reformer (8 points)
  • Hot Yoga (15 points)
  • Yoga (12 points)
  • I like at least 2 of these (20 points)
2) Which colors do you wear most often?
  • Pastel colors (3 points)
  • Bold colors (15 points)
  • Dark colors (18 points)
  • Cool shades of green and blue (9 points)
  • I wear many different colors in a week (25 points)
3) Which movie genre do you prefer?
  • Romantic comedy (5 points)
  • Historical fiction (10 points)
  • Science fiction/fantasy (15 points)
  • Action (20 points)
  • Horror/suspense (25 points)

Tally up your points, and see your results. Click on the spring roll type to get the link to the recipe!

0-13: You are a Shrimp-and-Mint spring roll. You have a light personality and are easy to talk to. Others feel refreshed and relaxed around you, and you don't feel the need to take yourself too seriously because you're too busy enjoying your life.

14- 27: You are an Avocado Egg spring roll. Your personality is a spin on a classic--you have manners and style that is appropriate for all occasions, however, you have your own special qualities and quirks that make you simply unique. Some people don't quite understand you, but the people who do love you.

28-42: You are a Sweet Potato, Kale and Quinoa spring roll. You are truly an individual! Your personality has not been influenced by your friends or family. You are the type of person who decided who you wanted to become, and you don't stop at anything until you achieve your goals.

43-53: You are a best of the best traditional Baked Veggie Spring Roll. A healthier spin on the traditional classic, people think of you as a healthy energy in their life and usually leave interactions with you feeling uplifted and upbeat.

54+: You are a Spicy Tuna Spring Roll. When you walk into a room, you demand attention with your spicy personality. People are naturally curious about you, and your thirst for adventure. Although at times you can be a tad intense, you try to avoid drama, which makes you a great friend.

What's New & Upcoming in the Community

April 7th: World Health Day & Sukha's 30 Day Yoga Challenge
Beginning on April 7th, World Health Day, members of the Sukha community will be beginning a 30-day yoga challenge. Join this challenge towards self-discipline and improved physical health and embrace the support of a like-minded community! Sign up and learn more by talking to a member of Sukha's front desk staff. More details will be provided in upcoming social media posts as well.

May 4th: Go Red with the American Heart Association
Following the February event, the American Heart Association's big annual Go Red event is coming up- like the first event, this will be an incredible opportunity for the Modesto community to promote awareness of heart disease as one of the leading causes of death in women and promote lifestyle changes to reduce the risk of cardiac events.

May 11th: Ride For Mom
The Seventh Annual pre-Mother’s Day cycling event will take place on Saturday, May 12, 2018. The event is staged at  Johansen High School in Modesto and includes fully supported rest stops, SAG and lunch. RFM is proud to again have the support of Doctors Medical Center (DMC) as the presenting sponsor of this year’s event. There's more to come on this event- stay tuned.