What is Yoga?

Yoga connects the body and mind and its most powerful benefit - it brings awareness into ones life - without awareness we always stay in the world of illusion with ourselves and others. The path of yoga teaches us how to integrate and heal our personal existence, as well as harmonize our individual higher consciousness. For this reason, yoga has often been called “meditation in motion”. The physical practices of yoga are powerful tools that can transform our lives in many ways, and not only on the physical level. Regular yoga practise can vastly improve our health and wellbeing allowing us to become more sensitive, aware and conscious in our bodies. It allow us more flexibility, clarity and creativity within the ordinary workings of our mind.

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Depending on the reasons why you come to yoga there is different styles of yoga and below is some information on the classes and what to expect.

Ashtanga Yoga (Levels 1 & 2)

These classes are Ashtanga Yoga postures, as taught in the tradition of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois & Manu Jois. Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga synchronizes breath and movement through a set series of asanas (postures) - The Primary Series. Expect the classes to be challenging, fast moving, strength and flexibility developing. Level 1 is for those who have some experience of ashtanga yoga classes and the style of yoga. Level 2 is for intermediate and those who are looking to improve on those postures which are challenging in the sequence. As this is not a Mysore style class, sometimes the full primary series may not be covered due to time.

Vinyasa Flow Yoga (level 1 & 2)

Vinyasa Flow yoga is a flowing sequence of poses - synchronizing the breath, moving in and out of poses. The themes of the class can vary depending on ability and requirements i.e. hip opening, shoulder and upper body, backbending, restorative. The level 1 classes are aimed at those who may not have done any yoga before or those with a little experience. Level 2 is aimed at those who like a strong, challenging flowing yoga class covering core, flexibility and strength postures.

Hatha Alignment Yoga

These classes are based on the teaching of B.K.S Iyengar. The classes are aimed at creating more awareness through alignment, anatomical information, for those recovering from injuries and using props to aid in the individuals needs. These classes will be slower in nature, but holding the postures for a longer period to build awareness.

Krishnamacharya's Legacy

Krishnamacharya can be firefox credited as "the father of modern yoga" however, the origins of yoga itself dates back ancient history to a time estimated around 4,000 and 8,000 years ago, but it is clear that until Krishnamacharya's era (1888 to 1989 CE) yoga was practiced mainly by a small group of ascetics who tended to live in caves, removed from society. Krishnamacharya might be considered as the yogi who broke yoga into the mainstream and in to the West.
Krishnamacharya taught many of the key leading yoga figures in modern-day yoga, including his sons Sri T.K. Srinivasan, T.K.V. Desikachar and Sri T.K. Sribhashyam. Important students include, Srivatsa Ramaswami , the late Indra Devi, the late Pattabhi Jois (the founder of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga), B.K.S. Iyengar (founder of Iyengar yoga). In the West, most popular yoga teaching is heavily focused on asana (yoga) practice, however, yoga is only one of 8 disciplines (eight limbs) of yoga, as defined by Patanjali.

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"When the breath wanders the mind also is unsteady. But when the breath is calmed the mind too will be still, and the yogi achieves long life. Therefore, one should learn to control the breath."

- Hatha Yoga Pradipika