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Living Your Leo

With Stephanie Marango, MD, RYT

The body is energetic in nature. Modern science perceives this energy many different ways, from within your smallest bits of matter (e.g. electrons) to the quantum fields that comprise 99.9999999% of you. Ancient scientists—devoid of technology—perceived this energy more metaphorically (e.g., meridians, doshas, chakras, auras).

Enter: the zodiac as a way to understand and work with your energy.

This month’s zodiac sign is Leo, which is amplified by a new moon in Leo on August 7 (and partial lunar eclipse), followed by a second new moon in Leo on August 21, which is also a much ballyhooed solar eclipse (read an in-depth analysis by my awesome coauthor Rebecca Gordon here).

So this summer’s energy is a loud-and-clear LEO.

How do we access its energy? Fortunately, some ancient astrologers correlated the signs to body regions, with Leo relating to the heart and upper back (which means that all zodiac energies live within you). Go figure: a sign that is all about courage, strength, and confidence relating to your heart.

When your Leo energy is balanced, you can see it in the body as “good” posture, with chest open, shoulders level, and back straight. As Neil Diamond sings, you’re shining your heartlight. Conversely, an imbalanced Leo energy may be seen as either a puffed-out chest denoting false pride (think Napoleon; yup, a Leo), or a hunched-forward position with rounded shoulders and heart hidden (maybe also arms folded self-protectively across the chest).

Here is an exercise recommendation to access your Leo and what it represents. If you want more recs—plus self-directed questions, info on your heart and upper back, Leo energy, etc.— check out the “Heart of the Lion” chapter in my book, Your Body and the Stars:

Dolphin Pose: For Strength of Heart

This pose is effective for strengthening and stabilizing the musculoskeletal structures that surround the heart. The key is to keep your back straight (not sunken), your chest broad, and your shoulder blades down and flat. Strength begets strength, so the more you practice this pose, the more easily you will be able to maintain the heart center’s proper alignment both on and off the mat. In time you will notice that it becomes easier not only to stand with a strong heart but to act from one too.

  1. Start in a tabletop position on your hands and knees. Dolphin pose step 1
  2. Lower your forearms to the floor so that your shoulders are aligned directly over your elbows. From this position, bring your palms together (forearms will angle toward the midline) and inter-lace your fingers. Make sure that the outeredges of the pinkie fingers are firm against the floor.
  3. Pressing your forearms into the floor, curl your toes under, exhale, and extendyour legs, allowing your sitting bones torise toward the ceiling so that you arenow in an upside-down V. Your feet are hip distance apart. Your head and neck should be an extension of your spine, in a straight line; your gaze falls between your mid-thighs.Dolphin pose step 3
  4. Press your scapulae flat against your back so that your shoulders do not curve (if your shoulders still curve, slightly bend your knees). Depress your shoulder blades away from your ears. Your entire torso—from pelvis to elbows—should form one flat line.
  5. Breathe for at least five slow and controlled rounds.
  6. Exit the pose by releasing your knees to the floor on an exhale.

Remember: things don’t have to be crazy complicated for them to work. One exercise can be enough. The key is to do it intentionally (i.e. consciously accessing your inner Leo while in the pose), properly (in correct alignment for your body), and regularly (consistency is key for any pattern change).

Let me know how the exercise works for you, or if you tried another that you prefer. None of this is absolute; it’s all relative to and in encouragement of you.

See you—and your abdomen & core—in Virgo,

Dr. Stephanie


Your Body and the Stars

Your Body and the Stars: The Zodiac as Your Wellness Guide

The first book of its kind, Your Body and the Stars is a fun, practical, and insightful handbook that takes a revolutionary approach to holistic wellness by unlocking the powers of the stars.

Do you suffer from neck pains? Go to the chapter on Taurus and the neck. How about sore knees? Learn preventive tips and exercises in the Capricorn chapter. Is your birth sign a Leo? Then read about how to optimize your Leo qualities and health. Your Body and the Stars is the first comprehensive reference guide to go deep into the twelve zodiac signs and the specific body region each sign represents—from your head down to your toes. Each chapter integrates a self-directed program and holistic approach to health—both your emotional or mental well-being as well as the physical health of your body. Practical end-of-chapter tips, questions, and illustrated step-by-step exercises give readers the tools they need to treat what is troubling them and to integrate this new perspective into their day-to-day life to prevent further illness.

Your Body and the Stars brings together a medically trained, holistic physician, Dr. Stephanie Marango, and a talented astrologist, Rebecca Gordon, whose horoscopes have appeared in Elle and on Epicurious.com. They combine their individual expertise to bring the twelve zodiac signs to physical life, providing a lifelong guide that can both prevent and self-heal, illuminating your head-to-toe healing connection to the cosmos.


1 Response


August 15, 2017

Great article, but one question: it refers to “a new moon in Leo on August 7.” Wasn’t it a full moon? That’s when you would have a lunar eclipse…right?

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