Monday, October 19, 2015


We sometimes believe that beauty tends to fade with age, but the truth is that a life time of beauty is as much about what we create and do as it is about our appearance. Just as the maple tree is beautiful in all of its stages from its awakening in the spring, it’s full glorious green leaves of summer, its multicolored beauty in fall to its bare skeleton during the winter, human beings are beautiful throughout the seasons of their lives. 

We begin our lives learning and experiencing as much as we possibly can. Like the trees in spring absorb the air and water, we are waking up to the world, absorbing the ideas of other people and taking in the world like sponges. We explore our physical strength, we discover our beauty and vitality attracts attention. We begin to use the information we’ve gathered to form ideas and opinions of our own, forming a philosophy about life. Our beauty is as much about what we are saying, doing, and creating as it is about our outward appearance. Like a tree in summer we are full, expressive, beautiful and productive.

In the middle of our lives we begin to let go of our creations, like a tree in autumn dropping leaves we release our past attachments and prepare for a new phase of growth. Our families change the children move on, careers shift or end. Our outward appearance changes. We begin to see lines on our faces and grey hairs, perhaps lamenting the passing of time. Beauty at this age is like the bare branches of the maple, it comes from the very core and essence of our being.  We may become more radiant than ever as our inner light shines brighter through our eyes. The wrinkles and grey hair become a beautiful testament to the fullness of our life's experiences.

We may loose our physical strength and our youthful appearance, but at this time of our lives we are reminded that there is nothing to fear in growing older. There is a special beauty that can only come after one has spent a lifetime on this earth. 

People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within. - Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

Ony Antonucci (518) 832-8249
Kripalu 500-hr Advanced Level Yoga Instructor  
For more information about Onyyoga and class schedules: or Facebook onyyoga

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

8 Things Happy People Do

There are two types of people in the world. Those who chose to be happy and those who chose to be unhappy. What is happy? The Merriam Webster dictionary defines it as feeling pleasure and enjoyment because of your life, situation, etc. We know happiness doesn't come from fame, fortune, or material possessions. Happiness comes from within. The richest person in the world could be miserable and right outside his door a poor, homeless person could be happy with their life. Happy people are happy because they make themselves happy. They have a positive outlook on life and are at peace with themselves. What is it that makes a person happy? Its simple, ask any happy person and theyll tell you. Here are eight things Ive learned from happy people:

1.      Don't hold grudges - Happy people understand its better to forgive and forget than to let negative feelings interfere with their positive feelings. Holding a grudge can cause depression, anxiety and stress. If you let it go youll have a clear conscience and more energy to enjoy whats good in your life
2.      Treat everyone with kindness - Its been scientifically proven that being kind makes you happier. Every time you perform a selfless act your brain produces serotonin, a hormone that eases tension and lifts your spirits. Treating people with love, dignity and respect also helps you to build stronger, long lasting relationships. Happy people make time for family and friends.
3.      See problems as challenges - Happy people don't use the word problem the brain interprets the word problem as a negative situation. A challenge is viewed as something positive, an opportunity, something to overcome. When facing an obstacle in life look at it as a challenge. Life isn't always fair. Focus on what you can control and change it for the better.
4.      Be grateful for what you have - Happy people dont worry about what they dont have. Youll feel better if you count your blessings instead of yearning for what you don't have.  
5.      Live in the present - Happy people don't waste time dwelling in the past or worrying about the future. Stop and smell the roses enjoy whats happening right now. Notice the little things. Life is too short to worry about what no longer matters. Try meditating, you don't need to be a Zen master to do it. Sit quietly for a few minutes breath deeply and slowly, it quiets the mind and helps to calm the nerves.
6.      Wake up at the same time every morning - Waking up at the same time every morning stabilizes your circadian rhythm (body clock), increases productivity, and helps maintain a calm and centered state.
7.      Eat well - Junk food makes you tired. Everything you eat affects your bodys ability to produce hormones, which affects your mood, energy, and focus. Eat foods that keep your body and mind in good shape. Add more fruits and vegetables to your diet.
8.      Exercise - Studies have shown that exercise boosts happiness levels as much as antidepressants do. Exercise can increase your self-esteem and give you a sense of accomplishment.

Many spiritual practices follow these same principals. You can find similar prescriptions for happiness in The Bible, Patanjalis Sutras, the works of Buddha and the vast amount of books  available on spiritualism. All of them have one thing is common. If you live your life with Acceptance, Forgiveness and Gratitude you will be on the road to happiness, and who doesn't want to be happy?  So Accept who you are, Forgive yourself and others for past mistakes, and Be Grateful for everything you have right now. The world is a beautiful place if you stop and appreciate it. Use all of your senses. Listen, look, taste, smell, and feel it. Your life is now, enjoy it and be happy.

May you be happy
May you be healthy
May all creatures on this earth large and small be free from suffering,   Namaste

Ony Antonucci, Yoga Instructor
E-200 hr RYT, Kripalu 500-hr RYT   (518) 832-8249

For more information about Onyyoga and class schedules: or Facebook onyyoga

Friday, June 26, 2015

Hiking and Yoga

Its the summertime and a great time to go for a Hike. There are many similarities between Hiking and Yoga. Both Hiking and Yoga help connect us to the present moment. When you go for a hike you begin to feel the earth beneath you as you root your foot down with each step. Your breath reflects the exertion you use to climb over rocks or wade thru streams. You meditate in a moment of stillness, feeling the sun on your skin, softly gazing at mountains, lakes and waterfalls. Cool breath in, warm breath out, your heart beats faster, flooding your muscles with blood and fresh air. These are the same feelings you get in a Yoga class.

Going for a Hike can improve your cardiovascular health and bring greater lung capacity for deeper, fuller breaths. Hiking also challenges muscles and joints by walking on uneven terrain. A regular Yoga practice can improve strength, flexibility, and alignment. Hiking and Yoga can increase focus, body awareness, foundation and core. No wonder Yogis like to Hike and Hikers like Yoga.

What I like best about Hiking and Yoga is the way it connects us to nature through the elements: Earth, Air, Fire and Water.  We start by rooting down into our foundation (earth) we deepen our breath creating space and expansion (air) our muscles and core begin to heat up (fire) allowing us to melt and flow with the present moment (water). Hiking and Yoga together bring us closer to our natural state, connecting us to the peacefulness and beauty in us and around us.

So take a Hike, take a Yoga class, do both, but most of all go outside. Be grateful for the beauty of trees, the sound of birds, the color of flowers, the cool water of the lake. Be grateful for the air, food and water nature provides. Be grateful for every breath and every step. Appreciate every moment you spend on this planet, and remember yesterday is just a dream, tomorrow only a vision the only place we live in is now. Now get going.

Happy Independence Day!  May your summer be happy, healthy and peaceful.

Peace is not Something you wish for,
Its Something you make, Something you do,
Something you are, and Something you give away - Robert Fulghum

Shanti, Shanti, Shanti, (Peace, Peace, Peace)
Ony Antonucci

E-200 hr RYT, Kripalu 500-hr RYT   (518) 832-8249

For more information and class schedule: or Facebook onyyoga

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Get Happy Feet with Yoga

Give your feet just a little attention, and your whole body will feel better. They hold us up all day long, they get us everywhere we need to go, and they connect us to the earth some yoga teachers even call the feet the "roots" of the body. Yet for all that our feet do for us, we don't do much for them in return. We cram them into tight shoes, pound along on them all day, and generally ignore them unless they're giving us serious trouble. 7 of 10 people will suffer from foot problems, many of which are entirely preventable ranging from inflamed bunions and hammer toes, tendinitis, and plantar fasciitis. Those aren't just minor ailments; some foot problems can alter the foot's structure and trigger pain elsewhere in the body. In fact, experts say one of the most important reasons to treat foot problems early is to prevent them from throwing the knees, hips, back, and shoulders out of whack.

One of the best ways to take care of your feet is with yoga. When you treat foot problems with yoga, you end up treating back pain, hip pain, all kinds of structural problems. Not only does it stretch out the muscles and lead to a greater range of motion, but it helps heal the root issue of inflammation as well. In fact, yoga gives feet a healthy workout that they rarely get any other way. Here are some tips from the experts on how best to use yoga to prevent or treat foot pain.

Throw Your Weight Around

The first place to begin building awareness of your feet is in standing poses such as Mountain Pose. Before you start the pose, think about how you naturally stand. Do you tend to put your weight on the inner edge of your foot, which tends to make your legs bow inward, or on the outer edge, which tends to make the knees bow out? (If you can't tell, check the bottoms of your shoesyou can often tell from the way the soles are wearing.) Notice how your weight falls, and then play with it by rocking forward and back, lifting first your toes, then your heels. If you tend to stand leaning a little forward, try shifting your weight back a bit, and vice versa. Next, try lifting the arch of your foot while pushing down around the edges, creating both a sense of rooting into the earth and lifting energy up from the center.

Work Those Toes

One great way to limber up stiff, underused feet is to work on the movement of the toes, most of us have lost some range of motion in the toes. In standing poses, focus on elongating the toes to stretch the sole of your foot. Press down into your heels at the same time you press forward with the base of the big and little toes, grounding forward with the ball of the foot. This can improve circulation, pumping blood and lymph back toward your heart, and potentially stave off edema and varicose veins.

Be Square

Paying attention to and correcting the way your feet connect with the earth can correct foot and ankle problems that have repercussions throughout your body. For example, pronated feet (which roll inward from the ankle down) tend to cause knee problems and back pain. One way to think about foot stability is to think of your feet as having four corners: the big and little toes, and the outer and inner heels. Distributing your weight evenly across your feet is central to healthy alignment. And that, in turn, may lead to a surprise: By resolving foot problems, you may discover you've resolved your knee, back, hip, and shoulder problems as well. Look down to make sure that the second toe, shin, and knee are all in alignment as you start a pose.

Stretch for Strength

Any pose that stretches the arch or the sole of the foot improves flexibility and loosens tension. Stand on a tennis ball and roll it back and forth under your foot, working the toes, the ball of the foot, the arch, and the heel. Hero Pose stretches the top of the foot and elongates the arch, while kneeling with the toes tucked under. This is the best way to lengthen the plantar muscles on the sole of the foot, which, when contracted, can become inflamed, leading to plantar fasciitis. Downward-Facing Dog is another way to give the feet a good stretch; lift the arches of the feet as high as possible, then extend the heels toward the floor to work the plantar fascia. At first it feels impossible when you try to lower your heels, but it just takes practice. And it feels so good when you do.

Make these exercises part of your life, and your foot bones (not to mention your leg bones, hip bones, and maybe even your head bone) will be forever grateful.
To learn more about how yoga can help feet, knees, hips, back and shoulders contact Ony Antonucci at 832-8249, or email Additional information is available at or Facebook onyyoga. Ony is a E-200 hr Registered Yoga Teacher and Kripalu 500-hr RYT and is certified in the Meeks Method and Positional Therapy. Private and group classes are available on South Shore Road in Edinburg. Chair yoga classes are on Monday and Thursday mornings in Edinburg and Northville. Gentle yoga and yoga for athletes are on Tuesday evenings at the Johnstown YMCA.  
How beautiful are the feet of them that bring glad tidings of good things! Romans 10:15

May your feet stand firm on the ground and bring good things your way - Namaste

Monday, April 20, 2015

Avoid knee pain and injury with yoga

It’s been a long winter and with the beginning of spring everyone is ready for some fun in the sun. After sitting in our warm homes all winter its time to stretch our legs and get outdoors. For some of us that means working outside gardening, cleaning the yard or taking a walk and breathing some fresh spring air. For others its getting back into shape and losing a few of the pounds gained this winter, anxious to get back into favorite sports like running, cycling, hiking, golfing etc. That first warm day you put on your sneakers and off you go, then it happens, you start to notice an ache in your knee. 

Weak in the Knees - The knee marks the meeting place of three bones: the shinbone, the thighbone, and the kneecap. Two crescent-shaped pads of cartilage, each called a meniscus, sit between the shinbone and the thighbone and act as cushions between the bones and shock absorbers during movement. Two sets of ligaments crisscross below the kneecap and run alongside the outside of the kneecap and strap all three bones in place. The leg’s substantial muscles help these ligaments keep the bones properly aligned. No wonder so many of us experience knee pain!

What the Experts say - For years, experts have said leg strength is the best way to ward off knee problems. This is because the knee’s key muscular supports are the hamstrings, which run from the base of the pelvis down the back of the leg to just below the knee, and the quadriceps, the four muscles on the front of the thigh. At the first sign of the disease, doctors often instruct patients to build muscle tone and develop flexibility in the legs to delay cartilage deterioration and reduce pain.

What the studies say - According to a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine in April 2003 in some cases, building leg strength doesn’t slow the disease’s progression, in fact, it increases it.  Researchers tested 230 volunteers with osteoarthritis of the knee for quadriceps strength and knee alignment, and then retested them 18 months later. The results surprised the medical community: Many volunteers with strong quads also showed rapid cartilage deterioration. 

But there was a catch—many  who had strong quads and experienced a rapid progression of the disease also had misaligned kneecaps, a small but significant impairment that intensifies pressure on the cartilage. What the study highlights is the importance of evenly building the leg muscles to keep the joint properly aligned, a task for which yoga is perfect. If the muscular contraction between the two sides of the knee isn’t balanced, the knee rotates as it bends, which makes the joint pull toward the stronger muscle. Over time, this wears down one meniscus faster than the other and eventually damages the bone the cartilage protects.

How can you correct imbalances - One way to evenly engage the leg muscles is Chair pose with your back against a wall. Focus on lifting your toes and pressing down evenly through all four corners of the feet. Otherwise, the outer quadriceps do all the work and old patterns are reinforced.  Another way to work on equalizing muscle use is by balancing on one foot with your eyes closed. “Without the orientation of the eyes, your feet and ankles have to find a true alignment to come into balance”

Why you need to keep moving - Without regular use, the cartilage protecting the knee joint becomes dry and brittle, making it vulnerable to decay. “Cartilage is like a sponge,” says William Roberts, M.D., president-elect of the American College of Sports Medicine and associate professor of family medicine at the University of Minnesota. “When you exercise, you squeeze the sponge, which allows it to soak up nutrients.”

Are all yoga classes the same - A consistent yoga practice, focusing on body awareness can strengthen and balance the joints. Certain forms of yoga are ideal for students recovering from knee injuries. These include Iyengar and Anusara (which focus on attention to detail) and Kripalu and Viniyoga (which focus on gentle compassion and healing). If you’re recovering from a knee injury or surgery, you might want to steer clear of practices that involve a lot of athleticism and quick transitions between poses until your recovery is complete. Regardless of the style you choose, make sure the teacher is knowledgeable about knees and willing to see you through the recovery process.

5 Ways to Protect Your Knees in a Yoga class

  1. Start With Your Feet: Proper alignment through the feet is the key to building strength evenly in the ligaments on both sides of the knee; when all the ligaments are equally strong, the kneecap glides effortlessly up and down and the cartilage doesn’t get worn down. Press actively through the four corners of your feet in every pose. If your feet are out of alignment, your knees are going to suffer.  
  2. Keep Your Knees in Line: When moving into deep knee bends, such as Chair pose first align your bent knee over your ankle, make sure both knees are lined up evenly so your hips are also in alignment.
  3. Gently stretch your upper thighs: Tightness in hamstrings and quadriceps can create uneven pulling on the front and back of your knees. A few gentle lunges before any activity will help loosen up those powerful upper leg muscles.
  4. Tune in to Subtle Signals: listen to your body if you feel achiness when you go into or come out of a bent-knee pose, you may be working too hard.
  5. 5. Build Strength by Balancing: Balancing poses, especially those that require moving through a bent standing leg, such as Eagle pose, are especially beneficial. Dynamic balancing protects the knee against future injury by training the functional alignment, not just working the muscle.

If you are interested in learning more about yoga or attending a yoga class contact Ony Antonucci at 832-8249, email Additional information at or Facebook onyyoga. Ony is a E-200 hr Registered Yoga Teacher and Kripalu 500-hr RYT and is certified in the Meeks Method. Private and group classes are available on South Shore Road in Edinburg. Chair yoga classes are on Monday and Thursday mornings in Edinburg and Northville. Gentle yoga and yoga for athletes are on Tuesday evenings at the Johnstown YMCA. 

It is only the farmer who faithfully plants seeds in the Spring, who reaps
a harvest in the Autumn. - B.C. Forbes

May the seeds you plant in your life reap a full, joyful and bountiful harvest. Namaste

Wednesday, December 17, 2014


Ony Antonucci of Edinburg, NY has been awarded a 500-hour yoga teacher certification from Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in Stockbridge, Mass.

Kripalu Yoga is a conscious practice of physical yoga postures, breathing exercises and relaxation techniques for integrating body, mind and spirit. The 500-Hour Kripalu Yoga Teacher Training consists of 200 hours Yoga Alliance approved Yoga Teacher Training
completed previously and 300 hours of additional advanced Yoga Teacher Training.

Antonucci has been teaching and offering workshops, at the Johnstown YMCA since 2008. “Yoga supports improved breathing, flexibility and focus, which are vital for athletes in training and those who want to maximize the benefits of their overall fitness programs,” says Antonucci. 

She has studied Therapeutic Yoga and Relaxation techniques that have been shown to improve range of motion and help relieve chronic pain. 

In addition to her Yoga instructional programs at the YMCA, Antonucci has a Yoga studio in Edinburg which enables her to offer a variety of Yoga classes to the community, as well.

She is certified in ‘Chair Yoga’ and teaches Seniors in Northville, Edinburg and at the Hillcrest Nursing home in Amsterdam.
Yoganand Michael Carroll, Dean of the Kripalu School of Yoga, says, “Graduates of the Kripalu Yoga Teacher Training program are steeped in an ancient and authentic yoga that is informed by modern medical and scientific understanding. Kripalu Yoga teachers are skillful in bringing the rich benefits of yoga to modern practitioners leading busy lives in the world.”

Kripalu, a nonprofit educational organization, is the largest yoga and holistic health retreat center in North America. Each year approximately 32,000 participants take part in more than 800 Kripalu programs on a wide range of topics related to health, personal
growth and spirituality. Kripalu also graduates more than 500 yoga teachers from its renowned certification trainings each year, and has a professional association of 2,500 registered yoga teachers as well as more than 30 affiliated yoga studios.

For more information about Ony Antonucci, visit For more information about Kripalu, visit

Monday, April 21, 2014

Yoga classes at the Johnstown YMCA

Hello friends,

I am happy to announce that I am going to be starting yoga classes at the Johnstown YMCA starting Tuesday April 22 2014.

I've been busy studying yoga and I'm anxious to share what I've been learning with you. Registration has begun for my therapeutic yoga classes, below is an outline of my new yoga classes. You can call the YMCA for further information and registration 848-3447.

Tuesdays 5pm to 6pm -  Yoga Basics, Breathing, stretching, strength and stamina. Learn how yoga helps relieve pain in neck, shoulders, hips, back, knees, and joints.

Tuesday 6:15 to 7:15  Vinyasa flow and relaxation - Apply yoga principals of breath with   movement, build flexibility and strength. Class ends with a relaxing flow that can help relieve back, neck and shoulder pain while building core strength. 

All levels are welcome in both classes.

I look forward to seeing you in the future. Have a wonder spring.
Ony Antonucci

                      Certified 200 hour Registered Yoga Alliance Teacher - 2008
                           Certified LVCYT - Chair Yoga Teacher - 2010
      Sara Meeks - Advanced Movement Concepts for Skeletal Health -  2012
                                                Osteoporosis Treatment Strategy Level I &II - 2012-2013
    Lee Albert - The Albert protocol for Muscle Pain Relief.
                                              Integrated Positional Therapy Level I & II  - 2011
                 Completed YMCA Silver Sneakers Fitness program Yoga Stretch Part I, II & III - 2009
              Presently enrolled in Kripalu 500 Hour teacher training program 2014