Jules Mitchell’s blog explores the latest in yoga biomechanics & exercise science.

By reading, commenting and sharing these posts, you are participating in the development of my work. Thank you for playing such an important role in the process.

Yoga has been a regular part of my life for over 20 years, during which time my practice has dramatically changed and my teaching style has evolved to reflect my personal experiences. After years of teaching anatomy for yoga teacher training programs, I had collected an extensive list of questions about how asana was actually affecting our anatomy and function.  I enrolled in graduate school and found many of the answers to my questions were to be found by studying biomechanics.  Partly due to my own injuries and partly due to the public perception that yoga is mostly stretching, my Master’s thesis project became a comprehensive literature review on the science of stretching, referencing the most current collection of scientific research on the topic of flexibility.

During the process, I discovered that the emphasis on stretching in the yoga community is often misunderstood, resulting in anecdotal information unsupported by the vast body of evidence published by exercise scientists.  Additionally, I discovered that our bodies (systems, organs, tissues, cells) respond to tensile loading in ways far beyond stretching for flexibility purposes.  “Stretching” had to be redefined in order to see the bigger picture.

Through my blog, I have shared my educational  journey with you.  Over time, my views have matured and my rhetoric has become more sophisticated as I have continued to research, write, and teach this material to yoga teachers internationally.  Thus, older posts don’t always reflect my current opinion on some subjects, but they do reflect my growth as an educator. For the most recent iteration of my work, check out my recently published my book, Yoga Biomechanics: Stretching Redefined.

To read through the posts, just scroll down to work your way back, beginning with my most recent posts.  Or start at the beginning, and work your way forward by clicking here.

Latest Blogs

Eccentric Contractions + Thought Provokers

Eccentric Contractions + Thought Provokers

Eccentric contractions require greater cortical involvement. The brain lights up during eccentric actions. How we learn anatomy doesn't always explain how anatomy works. I'm sure somewhere along your anatomy journey, you covered how muscles work and how contraction...

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Before you ask, “Is there a study on…?”

Before you ask, “Is there a study on…?”

I can’t tell you how many times a week I get an email or DM that starts like that. It’s cool. I really enjoy the inquiries. Keep them coming. It’s just that 9 times out of 10,  the question doesn’t have enough information for me to help point you in the right direction. I need to know far more information than the general topic. Sure, there is research on stretching, squats, yoga therapy, joint mobility, fascia, foam rolling, etc. Actually a lot more than you can probably consume in a lifetime!

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What is Your Role as a Teacher?

What is Your Role as a Teacher?

We're currently on break between Modules 1 and 2 of my 300hr TT. This year's training is such a rich experience, we're all going back to our notes and reviewing the lectures with extra thirst. Simultaneously, we're devouring the upcoming homework, eager for the...

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Learning to Learn

Learning to Learn

I've been doing a lot of teaching and even more mentoring during this last year. Seriously, the number of one-on-one and small group zoom calls I have each week is staggering. Hey, I'm not complaining. I actually find these calls to be one of the most rewarding...

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Isometric or Passive Stretch + Thought Provoker

Isometric or Passive Stretch + Thought Provoker

Yes, it's true. People email me or slide into my DMs and ask how they should be stretching, or what the best way is. If you're anything like me or have trained with me, you're probably thinking, "What outcomes are you trying to achieve?" When people ask me questions,...

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Introducing Thought Provokers

I have some special content to share with you today. I call them Thought Provokers. If you've read my book, you might remember a series of sidebars, also called Thought Provokers. These were opportunities for me to pose questions for you, insightful questions that...

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