Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga
ASHTANGA means 8 STEPS
VINYASA means SYNCHRONISATION of MOVEMENT & BREATH
YOGA means UNION
These are key elements to the practice. Ashtanga yoga is a dynamic form of Hatha yoga. Its roots originate from the town of Mysore in the south of India. This method is an ancient system of yoga that was taught by Vamana Rishi in the Yoga Korunta. This text was imparted to Sri T. Krishnamacharya in the early 1900s by Guru Rama Mohan Brahmachari, and was later passed down to Pattabhi Jois during his studies with Krishnamacharya.
The Ashtanga method is based on the principles described by Patanjali in the yoga sutras. This should not be confused by the Ashtanga yoga of Patanjali (royal yoga), which refers to all schools of yoga, including the Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois.
The traditional way of practice is called MYSORE STYLE.
Mysore Style & Led Practice
Mysore practice is an authentic teaching method, welcoming both beginners and advanced students as they practice side by side at the same time, each developing at their own rhythm.
We offer our students receive discrete personalised instruction and adjustments depending on their level, constitution, and understanding of the practice. Our studio is a place for free individual practice within a group that will help you develop confidence and independence.
We also offer led classes for those with a certain level of previous experience. In these sessions, our teachers will guide students through the series of postures from beginning to end without interruption. This permits students to develop fluidity and rhythm that can be challenging to find when practicing Mysore exclusively.
Ashtanga yoga is a system composed of 6 series of ASANAS (physical postures) designed to build physical and mental strength in order to obtain spiritual strength.
To achieve this we work with important points of focus called TRISTHANA, which is composed of 3 places of action or attention: energetic locks (BANDHAS), breathing (with sound of UJJAYI) & gazing point/direction (DRISTI).
In a Mysore style practice the postures are introduced little by little depending on the capacity of the student. By practicing regularly, the student progressively builds up STRENGTH, STABILITY & FLEXIBILITY.
The Ujjayi or victorious breathing technique consists of PURAKA (inhalation) and RECHAKA (exhalation). Both the inhale and exhale should be steady and even, the length of the inhale the same as the exhale. Over time the length and intensity of the breath should increase. This stretching of breath initiates the increased stretching of the body and strengthening of the nervous system.
The Ashtanga primary series was designed to realign and detoxify the body. The intermediate series has a large impact on the nervous system. Most students achieve all the benefits from the first two series, and only a few go on to the advanced series. All levels of practice will bring many therapeutic benefits as well as a sense of well being.
YOGA CHIKITSA (the primary series) is a known yoga therapy for DETOXIFICATION & ALIGNMENT.
NADI SHODANA (the intermediate series) helps with PURIFICATION of the nervous system.
STHIRA BHAGA A, B, C & D (the advanced series) promotes SERENITY & DIVINE STABILITY.
The 8 Steps
These first 5 steps support or provide the foundation for the last 3 and are sometimes called the outer support or outer aids.
These are the ethical principles and right attitudes. The 5 Yamas are: Inner purification (the consciousness of conditioning)
Ahimsa: nonviolent thoughts, Satya: truthfulness, sincere examination, Asteya: self-honesty, Brahmacharya: awareness of sexual energy, Aparigraha: detachment.
These are the observances in everyday life. The 5 Niyamas are: The external purification (the consciousness of the action).
Shaucha: pure actions, Santosha: acceptance, satisfaction, Tapah: discipline, Svadhyaya: the study of the sacred texts, Isvarapranidhanani: surrender to the divine
Physical purification (body consciousness)
The subtle purification (the consciousness of subtle energy, prāna)
The movement of Manas (conditioned mind) inwards (conscious use of the 5 senses)
Concentration of Buddhi (individual intellect) in and out of Manas.
State of Being (meditation)
Identification in Purusha (pure consciousness) totality, liberation.