Class Descriptions

MYSORE PRACTICE

Mysore practice is a unique approach to learning Yoga. It is a methodology that is aimed at helping you build a regular, individualized routine of yoga practice, using a sequence of poses that is learned slowly, step by step. On the first day of class, you’ll learn Sun Salutations, to stretch and strengthen the whole body and invigorate the breath, a few standing postures to strengthen and stabilize the legs, back, and waist, and meditative postures to calm the nervous system, focus the mind, and steady the breath. You can expect your first class to last about 30 minutes.

In your second class, you’ll repeat what you learned on day one, and then depending on your own body condition and needs, learn the next few postures. If you have a lot of yoga experience, you may learn several of the next postures. If you are brand new to yoga or have done some in the past but haven’t exercised in a few years, are recovering from an illness or accident, you will go more slowly and may learn some therapeutic poses to add into your routine.

This is an individualized approach to yoga. You will not do everything in one go, but learn to be proficient, to a certain degree, in each posture before moving on to the next. If you prefer to try everything all at once, then you will want to try the LED CLASS. It’s also ok to do a mix of led and Mysore practices.

PRIMARY SERIES LED

Primary series is the foundational practice of Ashtanga Yoga. It has 48 poses, with a very wide range of movements. The postures range from basic to challenging, and you are not expected to do be able to do them all on the first time you try it out. It’s good to learn things slowly, a little at a time, so if you are new to this class, please remember that you don’t have to do everything in the class, but you can try as much as you like. If you have some Yoga experience and want to check it out, please feel to join and do as much as is comfortable for you.

Ashtanga Yoga is a structured and dynamic form of practicing yoga postures, and can have wonderful effects on the body, mind, and spirit. Enthusiasm and effort are encouraged for Yoga, which considers that challenging ourselves is a good thing. We just have to be careful in monitoring our levels of energy and awareness, as becoming a more conscious person is largely the objective of Yoga.

This class is about 80-90 minutes long.

PRIMARY & INTERMEDIATE

On Sundays we do a practice of pranayama, primary series, and a few poses of the intermediate sequence. If you have been practicing the primary series for some time, you are welcome to come try it. This is a great all-around class, addressing the full range of bodily motions plus including the important breath practices of pranayama. This class is an hour and forty-five minutes long.

INTERMEDIATE

The Intermediate sequence is geared towards strengthening the spine in a variety of ways, including deep backbends, leg behind the neck postures, and arm balancing postures. Before taking this class, you should be very comfortable doing all poses in the Primary Series. If you are interested in learning the Intermediate poses and are not ready for this class, then you can come learn the beginning Intermediate poses at the Sunday Primary and Intermediate class. This class will be held again in the fall and is ninety-minutes long.

ONE HOUR ASHTANGA

For those who prefer a shorter practice, or do not have time for the longer full primary, this class is a great option. In this Friday morning class, we do the sun salutations, standing poses, and then group the asanas of primary series together without as many jump backs. Options are given for challenging asanas, and there are several asanas that are done in full primary that we do not do in this class, making it a slightly less complicated approach to the primary asanas. Even for those with lots of yoga experience, this class is recommended to gain a new perspective on how the primary asanas work together. .

ONE HOUR ASANA CLASS

This class is comprised of an hour of postures that are largely drawn from the various Hatha Yoga traditions. These are postures I do in my own practice, many that we do not find in Ashtanga Yoga. It’s basically an all-level class. Some Ashtanga Yoga folks find it too easy, but for me, it works well, and you get to move your body in ways that you don’t in an Ashtanga Yoga class. This is a great class to try if you want to do some traditional Yoga practices or wish to explore other approaches to yoga asanas. I recommend it for both students and teachers of yoga. It’s important to move your body in different ways if you have become habituated to just one sequence or one type of movement, and so this class is an opportunity to do so. We also focus a lot of practices that are deeply calming for the nervous system.

PRANAYAMA AND KRIYAS, BANDHAS, AND MUDRAS

The practices of kriyas, bandhas, and mudras are described in the Hatha Yoga texts for strengthening and purifying the nervous system. In a typical class, you will learn different types of abdominal contractions, energizing breath patterns, and purificatory practices. They are an essential foundation for deeper Yoga practices and are strengthening for the digestive and elimination systems.

Pranayama is essentially the science of quieting the mind and nervous system through various breathing practices. The yogic texts say that stress and all the associated problems with stress are basically from the speed of the mind. When the mind is speeding along, stress accumulates, and our breathing gets faster as well. By slowing the breath, we slow the speed of the mind. With a calm mind, our yoga becomes more refined, and our minds become clear, organized, energized, and focused.

ONLINE INTRO COURSES

We have three different levels of introductory classes. Level 1 with Sonal and Sandeep Sharma, Level 2 with Paloma Tamayo, and Level 2 in Spanish, also with Paloma. You will receive a lot of caring, individualized attention from Sonal, Sandeep, and Paloma during these month-long courses, and they will help you build a solid foundation in Ashtanga Yoga that will prepare you for next steps in learning, should you wish to take them. Over the course of a month, you will learn:

1. The introductory sequences of the Ashtanga Yoga primary series
2. Clear explanations of the technique used to link asanas with breath, called vinyasa
3. Personalized attention to your developing practice
4. An understanding of how to incrementally build a sustainable yet challenging yoga practice
5. Tips on breathing and meditation
6. Explorations of the various limbs of yoga, including diet and sleep habits
7. Time for questions and answers

Please email us with any questions.