The different styles of yoga…
Not sure which one is for you? Don’t panic. If you’re new to yoga it can be a bit confusing at first so here’s a little guide to make sure you find the perfect fit for your practice.
A wonderful place to start if you’re new to yoga. A Hatha class will cover a variety of movements and postures (known as asanas in yoga) such as standing postures, balances, seated postures, backbends, forward folds, twists and a few gentle upside down things. These movements are often built into a short sequence known as a Sun Salutation. Getting familiar with this sequence will be really helpful for your practice as many classes are structured using it.
This style is slightly more dynamic than a Hatha practice and there’s more of an emphasis on moving with your breath. We use the same postures but link them together in a more creative way so it’s usually a slightly faster pace than what you’ll find in a Hatha class. We’ll go through a sequence nice and slowly to begin with to cover the variations and the correct alignment, and over time we work up to a ‘one-movement-one-breath’ pace. You’ll probably find it useful to do some other yoga classes prior to joining for a Vinyasa as it’s a little less suitable for complete beginners, but of course anyone is welcome.
Gentle Flow Yoga
A softer, slower version of a Vinyasa flow. There’s still a strong emphasis on moving with your breath and transitioning mindfully between movements and postures.
Strength based yoga which is a little more fitness focussed. Expect some core exercises and postures that require your muscles to work a little harder. You might sweat a little.
A wonderful, juicy combination of slow stretching (Yin) and more energising, strength building movements (Yang). These classes are usually half Yin and half Flow/Power so it’s a nice balance of both.
Super slow and stretchy. A Yin class is a wonderful way to work on improving your flexibility. You’ll get into a comfortable, almost ‘enjoyable’ stretch, and then try to stay reeeeally relaxed and resist the urge to fidget. We stay in these postures for a few minutes so many people say it’s more challenging for the mind than the body.
Similar to Yin, but less of the stretch and more of the comfort. This is a really slow, nourishing class that is as gentle as you can get. Restorative classes often involve some guided meditation and mini massages. A wonderful way to rest, relax and revive yourself.
Myofascial Release and Restore
Fascia is our connective tissue and it’s a little like a cobweb covering everything inside our body (muscles, joints, tendons, veins etc). Both emotional and physical stress and strain causes the fascia to tighten and this results in us becoming pretty stiff and sore with various aches and pains. Using massage balls, this class has similarities to foam rolling/acupressure techniques. We use the balls to roll tight spots in the body and release tension. It’s a relaxing class but you’ll probably make some ‘oohs’ and ‘ahhs’ and ‘owwws’ during practice as it’s a sort of pleasure-pain sensation at times. Think of a deep tissue sports massages, but one you give yourself. It’s great for flexibility, de-stressing, detoxifying and keeping your joints happy, healthy and mobile.
A few things to know about every yoga class:
When you arrive, set up your mat and get any props you’ll need for class. There will always be an example mat at the front of the room. Feel free to make yourself comfortable; lay down and relax.
If you have any injuries or medical conditions you must tell the teacher when you arrive.
All classes will start with a little bit of breath work giving you a chance to learn some Pranayama (breathing techniques). This should help you settle in and bring your focus to your practice, rather than planning your weekend or what’s for dinner.
Everything is your choice in yoga, so if you want to take a break or skip a posture then you can rest or take a variation whenever you like.
All classes will end in Savasana. This is a dreamy posture where you lay down on your back and float away with peaceful thoughts. It’s a meditation, not a nap, so try to stay awake if you can.
Hopefully it goes without saying that all phones must be on silent and remain in your bag. It ruins the zen if you read a message mid Down-Dog.
Still have some questions? Send a message.
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