Body Worker & Teacher Kimberly Johnson – “Not Milk?”

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Lucas spoke with Kimberly Johnson an inspirational yoga teacher and trainer at Absolute Yoga Academy, body worker, rolfer and passionate about more natural child birthing processes. Lucas also answers questions about quitting caffeine, ways to become more flexible, acroyoga as couples therapy and gravity yoga. Lucas’ nutritional tip in this podcast deals with milk. So go ahead and have a listen!

In this Show, You’ll learn:

  • Rolfing
  • Postpartum bodywork
  • Pelvic floor injury
  • Fibromyalgia & The Yoga Trapeze®

Links & References from the Show


Welcome to the Yoga Talk Show. Your one-stop destination for all things yoga, health and wellness.

So hello and welcome, everyone. I’m here today with yoga teacher and body worker, Kimberly Johnson. Kimberly lives in Brazil, but she’s originally from the U.S., and she and I met quite a few years ago in Thailand. We were part of the same yoga course, and she’s still part of our teacher training faculty at Absolute Yoga Academy. So thanks so much for joining us, Kimberly.


Thanks, Lucas.


So you do a lot of different interesting work. A lot of yoga teachers end up doing a lot of the same thing, and by the same thing I mean most yoga teachers teach 90-minute classes in a studio, and I know you do that as well but you also do quite a few kind of off-the-wall, some people would say radical work, with women’s health, with bodywork, Rolfing which is a very strong form of bodywork which you can tell us more about, and also your new focus I know is on postpartum recovery which is something in know you’re really passionate about.

(01:07) So before we get started, maybe you can just tell people a little bit about who you are, about your yoga teaching and your work in general, and then we’ll dive right into things.


Okay. I’ve been teaching yoga for about 14 years, mostly in the lineage of (01:24), so with Iyengar, Pattabhi Jois and Viniyoga. Viniyoga was my first kind of yoga that I learned. And now I’m working a little bit more outside of tradition. I started studying with some yoga teachers here in Brazil that have a therapeutic approach that’s pretty different from what I’ve learned elsewhere.

So I learn all of that, and then also the Rolfing skills that I have, for body reading and kind of identifying what practices are best for which students, and I do that on a private level and then kind of a small class level and then I train teachers also to be able to do the same kind of work.


So Kimberly, I know a lot of people listening have had some type of massage before. A Thai massage or a Swedish massage, but very few people have had deep bodywork in the style of Rolfing. (01:21) Can you give us an idea about what that’s all about and why people get so excited about it? It’s a much deeper practice than most people have experienced.


Yes. (02:32) Rolfing is sort of like high-powered yoga. So the results that you can get over time with yoga, with Rolfing you can really get a lot faster because we work really deep at the bone and muscle level, at the level of connective tissue which is what wraps all the musculature together and what connects one thing to another and is often where adhesions and un-useful patterns get stored. So the goal of Rolfing is different than the goal of most massages, at least as far as I know. I think the goal of most massages that I know is kind of relieve muscle tension, and even chiropractors use massage so that they can loosen the muscles before they do the adjustments, whereas the goal of Rolfing is really better alignment with gravity.

So looking at how the person moves in gravity, and that’s walking, that’s doing yoga poses. I often Rolf people in yoga poses, so people will come, okay I have problems with this pose and then it’s like troubleshooting. Okay, well let’s look at this, this and this because it’s not always — one of Dr. Rolf’s famous quotes was where you think it is it ain’t. So you think it’s your knee, but it’s actually not your knee; it’s another imbalance somewhere else and you just keep focusing on your knee, your knee, your knee and you don’t see results.

And so Rolfing really looks at the whole picture, and we usually do 10 sessions as sort of a base, so that you start by getting the 10 sessions, which is an overall global body perspective, before we work really specifically.


So I think most people listening who have done some deep yoga at some point, they felt an emotional release. So maybe they’re doing a deep backbend or maybe they’re doing a hip-opening sequence and people feel this sort of involuntary reflex to cry. (04:33) And I know that people who have deep bodywork, Rolfing work done, it’s also a common reaction. Am I right?


It is a common reaction. I wish it was more common, not because I like to make people cry but just because I think we walk around carrying so much from our lives and each of our lives is so intricate and there’s so much that goes on in our daily lives and over the course of years that it’s really helpful when people can make those connections and really feel the inner connection, that it isn’t just happening. (05:09) The poses aren’t just happening on the body level, and they’re affecting all levels of us, so tears are just kind of a natural outcome of deep change, I think.


Sure. So you talked about us storing things in our connective tissue, and I want to jump into this postpartum work, but I have a feeling it’s related. (05:28) But talk about that idea of having stored emotions in your hips or in your connective tissues or in your shoulders. Is that something that you find with your clients?


Definitely. I perceive it and they also perceive it. It’s just that it’s a big part of the work for me, and probably for a lot of the yoga teachers listening, too, is just bringing people into that space that’s open enough that they can experience what’s stored, because usually we go around with all of our guards and all of our strategies which are helpful strategies to deal with our daily life. So it’s really fortunate when we get to that place where we can see what’s actually there. And I had a really interesting case recently, this is kind of jumping way in fast, but it’s sort of the most palpable experience that I’ve had recently.

I work inside women’s pelvic floors, so I do internal vaginal and anal work, usually postpartum recovery related but also people who have all kinds of problems, ranging from inflammation to sexual abuse. And I was working on someone postpartum, and she had a cesarean but she was just wanting to make sure her organs were in the right place and she was having some pain during sex that seemed strange to her. And when I touched her piriformis from the inside, she immediately started hearing the sounds of an instrument and she told me that she had had an abortion and that was the sound of the abortion from inside of her head.

And so I asked her if she wanted to go into that and she said no, that that was enough information for her. And so we just moved on in the session, and then I went to the other side and in the exact same muscle group, the same exact sound came into her ears. Usually I don’t really subscribe much to these kinds of statements like, oh well you have a collapsed chest so you’re probably depressed or oh I notice that you built up your pecs so you must be arrogant and proud. It’s kind of one-to-one correlations don’t really express much about how many subtleties and how layered we are as humans, but there are times when things are really that distinct. Or when I’m working in someone’s mouth and they start to taste anesthetic from dental surgery that they have.

And those are two really specific images, like we can divide images into categories. So you have taste is a sense and then you have hearing which is a sense, but then you also have visual images which I think are probably more common for people, where something is touched and they remember and experience, like oh wow I fell off a tree when I was 10 and I totally forgot about that. Or a flash of a memory of a conversation that just didn’t land right, something unresolved. So those memories or stored history in tissues can come up in a lot of different ways.


So Kimberly, I think a lot of people listening are thinking, hey I’ve had a massage, I had a yoga class but I never had anything like what you’re talking about. (08:54) Help us understand how somebody gets to a place where they’re comfortable, I mean I assume you’re breaking out latex gloves and you’re entering orifices, this is serious stuff, right?


Right. I do wear gloves all the time, and yeah. How does somebody get to this space? That’s a really good question. I think it’s probably very similar to how someone gets to — or maybe 20 years ago got to a yoga class. Now yoga is so available that you don’t really have to jump through much to get to a yoga class. (09:26) But I think that usually what brings people is suffering, so if you’re hurting enough than oftentimes you’re willing to totally go outside of your comfort zone. So say somebody’s tailbone has been hurting for three years, ever since they had a baby, and it may be totally a complete edge for them to have somebody, a stranger, work in their pelvic floor. I’m trying to think vaginally, you’re going to have either your lover’s touched you or your doctor’s touched you, but anally probably only yourself and a lover maybe have touched you. So it’s definitely like you’re saying, very outside the normal circumstances. So you have suffering that usually makes people feel a sense of urgency.

(10:16) Then you have people that are really on the path to self-discovery and they’re really willing to go outside of their comfort zone to learn more about themselves and to be able to live more wholly so that there’s not pieces of themselves that are left behind, that they feel like they’re totally available. So I’d say that those are the two main reasons.

And then in terms of what I do, of course it’s usually not a first session that I would work internally. Usually I have to develop a rapport and help them to feel safe with me and talk through any concerns they have about it. I’m also a therapist in somatic experiencing, which actually that training came around after the course that I taught in Thailand, the 500-hour course. Because I realized that as a yoga teacher, I didn’t have the group dynamic skills that I needed to take people as deeply as they were going in my classes and be able to manage a group at the same time.

So now I use those skills one-on-one so that if for instance someone is having a traumatic experience come up, which for me trauma is something that we all have. So it’s such a loaded word, but trauma for me is just unresolved material in our system, things that haven’t been able to completely process or be digested. And one thing that’s traumatic for you is not traumatic for me, just because we’re two different people and we have different histories and different nervous systems.

So I have to get to know that person and their nervous system, and some people feel really comfortable right away and I can go deeply, and some people it takes a long time and maybe never I get to the place where I think they might want to go, but it’s enough for what their system is ready for.


So from here let’s just right into your postpartum work, because I know you’re a huge advocate of natural childbirth and natural child rearing. (12:27) So talk to me about how this all plays into your previous work and your current work and how all of this has come together to have your new passion be in and around women’s health, specifically new moms health.


After I had my daughter, my body was really rearranged and I want to use the word damaged. So I really couldn’t do the yoga practice that I’d always done, even the most mellow kind of Vinayoga practice that I knew wasn’t happening for me physically. I could still do Pranayama and meditation, but as a new mom I just didn’t feel like I even had time. I could do that maybe while I was nursing, but I didn’t have separate time. I wasn’t able to set — I’m also a single parent, so I didn’t have separate time and enough support to be able to have that separate kind of a practice. And I just realized, wow I’ve been a body worker and I feel like I’ve been so lucky to have some of the best yoga training in the world really and yet I am in a situation where the doctors are telling me that I need a full pelvic floor reconstruction and I’m not about to go get surgery and the full pelvic floor reconstruction.

So I just set out on a journey to heal myself and to figure out how do people in other countries deal with the postpartum period and what are other wisdom traditions that could inform my healing process. And as a result of that, I think a lot like my experience with yoga, I came to yoga at a very big turning point in my life and then I never set out to teach, it just became this thing that was so powerful and so pervasive in my life that it just made sense to share it, and the same thing with the postpartum. I feel a real call, because I feel like wow if I had all this body awareness and yoga experience and I dealt with a significant portion of my own personal journey and let’s say traumas, and I still ended up with such a radical result and I was having such a hard time finding any resources. Now I really want to be one of those resources for women, so that especially women who practice yoga or have a spiritual practice have a reference point.

For instance, here’s one example. (15:09) Elite runners, advanced yoga practitioners and ballet dancers are the people who are most likely to have pelvic floor incontinence and tearing during childbirth. I didn’t know that before I had a baby. So I didn’t do any special preparation for childbirth. I mean, I did prenatal yoga and I had prenatal visits with a midwife, but I didn’t realize that I needed specific perineal preparation. It never would have occurred to me, because I thought — Richard Freeman was my yoga teacher. All he talks about is the pelvic floor. I thought I was like an expert in the pelvic floor. I knew every corner of my own pelvic floor.

But I didn’t realize that just the fact of having practiced for 15 years before then I had a hypertonic perineum, and most women who have been practicing long term and then have — you imagine you practice for 20 years and then you have a baby when you’re 40, you’re at really high risk for tearing. And tearing just means a lot longer recovery and scar tissue, and that leads to stress which leads to other things.

(16:24) So I really want women to know that, because there’s things you can do beforehand, like there’s equipment, there’s a piece of equipment called an EIP-NO that’s not available in the U.S. but it is available in Canada, South America, Europe and Asia. And it’s a simple piece of equipment. It’s basically a perineal stretcher, and it’s not mechanical. It is mechanical, but it’s not electrical. And it’s just a really simple thing that if I would have had it, I think my outcome would have been totally different. But I just assumed I’m healthy, I’m natural and my body will know how to do it. And my body did know how to do it, it’s just that also the way that I had used my body beforehand with yoga, rather than being a help actually was a hindrance.


It’s interesting. I find that so many things in health and actually just in the whole world are just a big, great paradox. (17:23) And so you’re saying that like a lot of the people with the greatest sort of pelvic floor strength are at the greatest risk of having a pelvic floor injury; is that correct?


Exactly. Equestrian riders, you imagine they’re gripping with their inner thighs. So it’s basically the equivalent of being a body builder who can’t straighten their arms because their biceps are already all the way flexed.


Yeah, sure.


So you just have this hyper-toned muscle that helps you do a whole lot of stuff, but it doesn’t help you give birth.


So here’s a hard question for you. As you went through that experience yourself and I know you’re an advocate of natural childbirth and I’m a huge advocate of natural childbirth and before my son was born we did all this research about natural childbirth and watched all these films and there’s a very famous film called Orgasmic Birth and we watched another one with I think it’s Ricky Lake or something like that. In one of these documentaries, I can’t remember which one it is, but they’re going on and on about natural birth and then there’s an emergency and she has to have a C-section and this is in the documentary about natural birth.

It was just kind of this weird wakeup call for me and I just thought, wow what a crazy world we live in where even when we really want to have a natural birth we can’t or we do and it create these huge health problems, and for me it just opened up a lot of questions for me, whereas previously I just thought everyone should have natural birth. Anyone not doing natural birth is doing something wrong.

(19:00) And I’m just curious what’s your take as a mom, as somebody who’s been through what sounds like a difficult birth experience and as someone who’s a prenatal educator.


It’s a huge question. Worldwide women are having more and more difficulty giving birth. The average time of labor has increased 2 hours in the last 30 years or something like that. And that being said, you have to weigh what’s best for the baby and what’s best for the mom and why is it becoming so difficult for women to give birth. What is making it so difficult?

In my opinion, there are women who end up with cesareans who really want a natural birth, who really have a lot of grief and disappointment. But I find that most women who feel like they did their best and they had the right kind of care, support and if they end up with a cesarean because they actually needed one, it’s not that big of a problem. I love that part of the movie of The Business of Being Born, because it’s so ironic. It just shows that there’s so many things that are out of our control. I personally believe that every woman has the birth that she needs, to heal what she needs to heal. If I look at my own birth situation, I definitely wouldn’t be doing the work I’m doing if I just had an easy birth, if I got through it and then I got back on my mat and I was practicing for a series again. I wouldn’t have learned what I learned.

And at the same time, I am committed to getting the information out there to women, yoga practitioners specifically, that there has to be some additional preparation. I’ve heard a lot of people say to me lately, like my older friends maybe they’re in their early 40s, longtime spiritual practitioners, that are saying to me, oh I don’t have anything to prove. Like, I don’t need to prove anything. I don’t need to go through the natural — like what do I have to prove? I don’t need to go through the whole birth process. People that I would never expect to say that.

And all I can say is that caesarians aren’t guarantees either. So you can have a cesarean and you can get an infection in your stitches, you can be poorly stitched, you can have keloid scaring, you can have cervical adhesions afterwards that fix your cervix in place, you can have long-term back problems, you can have a horrible epidural. The majority of births turn out fine, and those are the ones we don’t hear about, the ones that the mom and the baby it was hard work but they got here. And then there’s all these other potential outcomes.

But for me, I believe that birth is one rite of passage that we still have in modern culture, and that when you skip that step, I’m talking about women who are choosing to have children, not women who are not, then when you skip that step then there’s other ways that you’re going to have to learn the same things. Because there is a reason why pregnancy is the way it is. (22:53) It’s a preparation for parenting, and birth itself is a preparation for parenting. And when you skip that, you skip some of what there is to be gained from the experience.

For someone on a soul’s journey, which I hope the majority of yoga practitioners are, it’s a huge opportunity.


So tell me how you approach that. You get a new client coming in and perhaps it’s somebody who’s just found out they’re pregnant and they’re interested in mind/body wellness. (23:26) What kind of path do you lead them down, to help them find the birth that they need? How does that look?


It’s so individual, plus I live in Brazil where there’s an 80% cesarean rate. So here I really have to work a lot with people around their relationship to their own body and trusting themselves, because even women choosing the right doctor here for them is a really big deal. So part of it is straight up information, like just letting people know what happens in each stage of birth, and you’re likely to say I can’t do this at this point of time and if you and your partner know that you’re going to say that, how are you going to address it? It’s really looking head on at the fears, instead of just saying well this is what I want. It’s like okay, that’s true and why do you want it. And working through experientially, like how do you deal with pain. What’s your normal reaction when something hurts? Letting people know what are their choices, for example for anesthesia and in what cases do they think that that’s useful for them.

It’s hard because it’s hard to be an activist and then at the same time balance that with someone coming to their own internal truth, because obviously I had a home birth in Brazil by myself pretty much so I’m really far on one end of the spectrum. I like to work with people who are less — because sometimes just knowing that, like this person’s a foreigner and they had a home birth already makes it hard for people to relate to me, hard for the women to relate to me especially if they’re coming from a family who’s really pressuring them into a cesarean and they think it’s nuts to try to have a natural birth.




But I try to just give women little pieces of information over time and then also give them experience of trusting their body, and through the yoga practice I often do — I’m not a Kundalini teacher but I’ll do like an 11-minute Kundalini exercise where the focus is really showing yourself that you can do more than you think that you can do. And I’d say that in a prenatal context or women’s health, my relationship with the women is much more intimate, in a way. It’s more social. They kind of linger after class longer. I offer myself much more, in terms of I tell them if you don’t hire me as a doula it’s fine, but if I’m in town and you want me to come you can call me. I think that women need to feel like they have allies.


Perfect. (26:44) And tell me about your new website and your new project, so people can understand a little bit more about this focus that you have.


(26:53) Yeah, my new website is called Maga Mama. Maga means sorceress in Portuguese. And it’s really a culmination of all this experience, mostly my personal experience together with my professional experience in teaching yoga and doing bodywork and working with women. It’s specifically a resource for new moms in the first three years, a place where they can go online and get concrete information, for instance about the pelvic floor. I’m going to have a six-week week-by-week practice that a woman can do after she gives birth. I’m interviewing mothers, yoga teachers, therapists on different things, everything from how a woman’s energetic body is different than a man’s energetic body and how that relates to the practices that you might want to do in your recovery process.

And then there’s also an inspirational element of I write articles and other people are writing on their experience of motherhood and just really trying to provide what I feel like I really could have used and what I see out there is a real emptiness. Because I feel like, especially in the U.S., there’s a whole lot of childbirth education going on and people are, in general, very proactive about the birth they want and people are used to knowing about doulas. That’s not the case here in Brazil, but in the U.S. and Europe I think it really is. There’s a strong birth culture.

But there’s still a huge emptiness after birth, where modern culture hasn’t caught up to where women used to have support from family and extended family and community, and now it’s like a woman has all this support until the baby comes out and then all of a sudden it’s kind of a vacuum. So my intention behind the site is it’s a place where women can go and find a reliable resource that is evidence based but that also has a spiritual and soul element to it, so that there’s information coming directly from research but also that’s coming from my personal experience and other yoga practitioners’ experience of the mothering process.


Great. (29:17) And so for new moms or new moms to be who are listening, where is the best place or where are the best places to get in touch with you and what kind of exciting things do you have coming down the pipe soon here?


Okay. The best place to get in touch with me is either by email, which is [email protected] That’s also my website, kajyoga.com. My new website is MagaMama.com, but it’s not up yet; it’s coming.

Lucas: Awesome, well great, well perfect. So everybody listening, please check out kajyoga.com, that’s Kimberly Ann Johnson Yoga, kajyoga.com. Thanks so much for joining us, Kimberly, and I hope to talk to you again very soon.

You’ve got questions? We’ve got answers. Welcome to the FAQ round. If you’ve got something that you want to ask, send your questions to [email protected]. And now, let’s hear what’s going on with our listeners.

Lee asks:

(30:22) I’m 34 and every joint in my body is stiff and sore. I’ve been trying for about nine years to quit caffeine, but it’s so hard. I don’t know if caffeine is the cause but no one has found any other cause for my bad joints. Can this be the cause? Are your joints fully back to normal now?

Lee, my joints feel great. I’ve done a lot of damage to my joints at different times, through over training, through doing stupid things. But yeah, all my joints feel great. My knees, my lower back, my shoulders, everything, I’ve damaged all of those but healed all of them as well. It sounds like you’re experiencing like fibromyalgia or faux arthritis symptoms. At 34, you shouldn’t be feeling that. If you are eating bread, if you’re eating grains and gluten, I would encourage you to religiously quit all of that for at least a month.

Now is that going to cure it? I don’t know, but I’ve never seen anything have as big of an inflammatory affect on the joints as gluten. People give up gluten and they have arthritis for 20 years that goes away in 21 days. I mean it’s shocking. So it could caffeine be contributing? Sure. It could be, but I don’t think it’s giving you that kind of joint pain. I think it’s probably gluten. If you’re eating bread, stop. It’s terrible stuff. There’s a book called Wheat Belly, it’s a really, really well-written, well-researched book. It’s worth reading. I like it because it focuses just on wheat. It helps you understand what a terrible, terrible plant wheat is and makes you never want to eat it again. It’s really just entertainment; it’s not a food.

Ali asks:

(31:53) I am a cheerleader and I want to be flexible. What is the quickest way to flexibility?

I get a lot of emails from cheerleaders. Cheerleaders have incredible flexibility. Most of them have much more flexibility than me. Ali, I’m sure you’re already more flexible than me. One thing is most people doing cheerleading are young, and being young helps. I don’t know how old you are, Ali, but if you’re under 20 it’s a big deal. Your tissues are a lot more malleable and a lot less calcified. You have a lot more room to grow. The key thing is though, younger people have trouble sitting still and they want to do jumping kicks and splits and all this kind of stuff. You’ve got to slow it down and take your time. Avoid those aggressive partner-assist cheerleader gymnastic stretches, where somebody sits on you or squishes you or yanks your leg up. You’ve got to be really, really careful. People get injured doing this stuff all the time, and sometimes these injuries can last a long time.

Focus on deep, long-hold stretches. Check out our Gravity Yoga series. You can find that on the YogaBodyNaturals.com/Store page. It’s a great way to go. These are long-hold poses, essentially helping you to relax deep into stretches. You’d want to do these after your cheer practices.

In terms of quick ways, that’s the fastest way I know. How fast is it? This is what people always want to say. Well if you’re totally new to yoga, I always say that you can double your flexibility in four weeks, and for most people that’s really true. If you’re not new to yoga or if you’ve made a little bit of progress, what you’re really looking at here is from a year from now you can have a totally new body. What I mean by that is you’ll just be shocked and amazed by the way your body can move, the way you can sit on the floor and cross your legs, bring your arms up over your head and cross your arms behind your back. It feels like a whole new body, and that takes about a year. Anything beyond that is really gravy. You can make incredible progress. But if you dedicate and commit to a full year you’ll really give yourself a whole new body, in terms of space to live in. I always talk about it like adding a new room on your home, adding an extension. You really feel like you have that much more body to live in because you have that much more mobility.

Leslie asks:

(33:58) I’m concerned about using the yoga trapeze for somebody with fibromyalgia and a neck injury that sets off migraines. I lose a lot of time to pain. Can you let me know about this? Could the trapeze be safe for me and help me?

Fibromyalgia is a tricky one. It’s a really, really tricky one. The thing I’d be more concerned about in terms of the yoga trapeze is neck pain. You’ve got to be really, really careful with your neck. Neck injuries can be chronic, they can be stress-related, they can be muscle imbalance-related, they can be acute injury related, so many different things. And the last thing you want is a migraine, right?

In terms of using the yoga trapeze, I would for sure only use it with somebody assisting you, if you can, if you have that neck injury and take it really, really slow. No fast movements, no dynamic movements. Use the gravity traction, just the passive hangs. It could feel really, really great on your neck. Just make sure you have someone nearby who can support you if you feel like you need some support.

Jordon asks:

(34:53) I recently read Annette Young’s article on acroyoga as couple’s therapy. I’m wanting to explore different types of therapies offered around the world and I’m wondering if you would know of a country other than the U.S. that specializes and offers this service.

The acroyoga people, they really blow my mind. They are actually acrobats. They’re incredibly, incredibly talented. I mean 10 years ago when I started doing yoga nobody was doing anything anywhere near what these people do. They do better yoga on a slack line than I can do on a yoga mat. It’s shocking. The acroyoga people are the best place to look. They have an incredibly, incredibly well-trained group of teachers and they do courses and trainings and workshops all over the world. If you go to their website, I’m not sure what it is, but just punch in acroyoga. It’s escaping me the name of the website. I’ll put it in the show notes here, but search acroyoga. That’s the best way.

In terms of couples therapy, yeah, that might work. It might not. I’ve had some bad experiences with partners in yoga where you drop them on their head and things go badly, so just a word of caution there.

Jette asks:

(36:02) I bought the Gravity Yoga DVD. I’m a beginner. I’m not flexible at all. When I do the hip stretch, my knee, the one on the mat, really hurts. Should I just continue? What can I do?

So hip stretch, Jette, is referring to Blaster Pose. Blaster is a big, wide lunge where you have one foot way out in front of you, other leg back behind you with the knee on the floor. Jette, it’s totally normal to feel pain in the knee. It’s just your knee on the floor. It’s just that pressure. I don’t know what happens, but somehow that knee pain goes away. I don’t know if your bones callous or what happens, but eventually you don’t feel it. In the short term, just stick a towel under your leg and keep going.

Paula asks:

(36:41) In Australia, we have a brand of milk called A2, and then from that milk they have made A2 yogurt. It’s naturally set and the ingredients are pasteurized A2 reduced fat milk, milk solids and live cultures, lactobacillus acidophilus, bifidobacterium (these are big words for a little guy like me) and lactobacillus. It contains the A2 type of beta-casein protein only. Would I possibly be able to ask your opinion on this?

This is a great question, super nerdy nutrition question. It’s kind of the hot topic in milk right now. Everybody hates milk right now, in terms of on the nutritional scene. I don’t know why, but milk had this really great 50-year run where it was thought of as the ultimate health food and now more and more research is coming out about casein, which is one of the most allergenic, carcinogenic proteins on the planet. You’ve got whey and casein protein in milk, and it’s just incredibly mucus-forming, inflammatory, lipogenic, all kinds of reasons why milk is a disaster.

But what happens? Well we’ve got this culture based on milk. In the U.S. dairy is so, so huge. Northern Europe, dairy is such a huge staple in the diet, that taking away milk is like taking away a beloved friend. And so people are desperate to find something else. Well we’ve got the goat’s milk and the sheep’s milk and there’s donkey milk here in Europe. But none of it’s quite the same as our beloved cow’s milk.

And so what’s happened is people have done research, and in the same way they say the wheat that we eat today is a very, very distant relative of the wheat that we had even 50 years ago due to hybridization and genetic modification, they’re saying the same thing is true of the cows. A cow, like a chicken, is a freaky poodle of an animal. If you go look at that cow, that poor, pathetic thing has been bred to be very much incapable of doing much at all. It is a calorie-produce machine, it is a sickly organism, poor thing. I don’t know what we’ve done to create these animals, but they’re a disaster.

In any case, they’ve gone and they found animals with a different genetic makeup, and I am not sure, it’s A1 and A2 I believe, I get confused between them. In any case, the type of casein protein is supposed to be different. It’s supposed to be less inflammatory, less carcinogenic. I thought this sounded fantastic. I was really excited about it. Talked to a milk expert in California. It turns out the research here is a bit dubious and a bit — it’s looked at both ways.

So Paula, my thought on this is the jury is still out. The one thing I will say is that milk from any other animal besides the poor, sad, sickly cow is probably going to be better. So donkey milk, sheep’s milk, goat’s milk is probably going to be better. That poor, sad cow is really a sad species.

Mimi asks:

(39:46) How did you get into yoga? Is it easier to start with an instructor? Do you set a time every day to do your yoga? How long every day?

Wow, okay, this is a lot of questions. How did I get into yoga? A friend dragged me from class and the rest was history. I went to class every day for the next year and I haven’t really stopped, and that was 10 years ago.

Is it easier to start with an instructor? I would say it is. A lot of people really struggle with self-motivation. I’m not one of them, and even me without a teaching I don’t think I would have gotten started. So try to go to a class. Again, even if it’s just one a month, get that hit, get that energetic sort of exchange where that teacher gets you inspired.

Do you set a time every day to do your yoga? Yeah, I do it first thing in the morning. I get up in the dark and I waddle over. I have the little yoga studio set up in my house. I roll my mat out and I do my practice. My practice has varied. For many, many years I practiced for three hours a day. Now those were the luxurious days of my bachelor, un-married life, wild me. Most bachelors go out partying all night; I like to go to bed early and wake up at 4:00 in the morning and do yoga practice for 3 hours. Those days are long gone. I have 2 kids and 30-plus employees, so my yoga practice is a lot shorter. On a very, very short day it’s an hour. I try to get at least an hour and-a-half, and when things go my way two hours-plus. Like weekend, maybe the kids will be out in the park or something, I’ll do a nice three-hour practice.

But for me it’s a minimum of one hour, and I’ve actually been developing a series of yoga practices that fit right in that 60-minute sweet spot because I find that a lot of people just don’t have time. And of course you can always make time, but we want to make time for other things, too, like relationships and like business and other things in life. And so I’ve been working on developing a series of 60-minute practices that are very, very dynamic and flexibility and strength balancing. It’s a challenge, and it’s a really, really intense 60 minutes but for me it really works and it helps me to find that balance. But in an ideal world, yeah, I’d probably practice for 3 hours a day just because I’m a geek like that and I love it.

So if you’ve got questions, please email [email protected]. I love to hear from you. I love your questions. Thanks for tuning in.

It’s now time for the bendy body nutritional tip of the day. Raw food, edible insects, tropical oils, why not? It’s all fair game. Here we go. Let’s talk nutrition.

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