On the physical level, yoga postures, called asanas, are designed to tone, strengthen, and align the body. These postures are performed to make the spine supple and healthy and to promote blood flow to all the organs, glands, and tissues, keeping all the bodily systems healthy. Yoga uses breathing techniques (pranayama) and meditation (dyana) to quieten, clarify, and discipline the mind. Contrary to commonly misconstruded beliefs yoga is not a religion, but a way of living with health and peace of mind as its core aims.
Power Yoga/Ashtanga/Astanga Yoga “Ashtanga” wasn’t a commonly used or understood word back in 2003 and as I felt that simply “yoga” didn’t describe what I did, I came to the agreement to allow the venues that I teach at, to have my class on the timetable as ‘power yoga’. I felt this was a suitable way of letting people know that they were coming to a more dynamic & challenging type of class. Ashtanga actually means 8 limbs, as it is an 8 limbed path, or 8 step program if you like. Developed many 1000’s of years ago as a method to Samadhi (enlightenment), there are many different reasons why people start a yoga practice & many benefits to having a regular yoga practice.
Mysore style is the traditional way of learning ashtanga named after the town in South India where this style of yoga originates from. It is a self practice session which takes place in a group class, a contradiction you say? Each student taught in this type of class receives a personal practice taylored to them as an individual. They learn at a pace which suits them, and the practice can be modified to match their body taking into account any postural factors, injuries or illness. Traditionally the practice is done first thing in the morning before your breakfast. One of the benefits of the mysore class is that you can turn up and leave when you want within the allocated class time. Another advantage to this style of class is that you learn the sequence poses off by heart which means when you can’t make it to class you can still practice as you know exactly what you need to be doing. Thus learning true independence as a yoga student.
New students please get in touch with Alice by text or email before turning up.
This is the way Ashtanga Yoga has historically been more commonly taught in the west. Your teacher will guide you every step/breath of the way and will guide the whole class through the full Primary series – although if you are new you may well be asked to stop and sit while the more experience practioners work their way throught the later poses. There is not much time for personal adaptations or detailed explanations as the class has to keep on pace with the “breath train” inhale here, exhale there…
These benefits include …
Loose clothing that is easy to move in and an empty stomach are essential for this class and you may wish to bring a small towel for the Ashtanga classes. You may also like to brink some drinking water.