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Not sure what Yoga is?

A quick snapshot of what yoga is, styles I teach and what you need for a yoga class. 

Image by Sven Mieke
What is Yoga

‘Yoga is not about touching your toes. It is what you learn on the way down.’

Jigar Gor

Put simply, Yoga is the art & science of living a healthy & well life. It is a physical, emotional, mental & spiritual discipline that aims to bring harmony to body & mind. Yoga is an ancient practice, its origins can be traced back to Northern India over 5,000 years ago, which pre-dates Buddhism, although Yoga isn’t considered a religion itself but rather a holistic practice rooted in Hinduism. The word Yoga is derived from the Sanskrit root of ‘Yug’ which translates to ‘join, yoke or unite.’ This means to join our individual consciousness or true self/soul with that of the universal or supreme consciousness or ultimate self/soul. It also means to bring balance & harmony to body & mind & to unite ourselves with nature & experience the oneness of existence and to attain liberation (Moksha) – from suffering, attachment, ego, and anything that stops us from living more freely.

‘Yoga is the journey of the self, through the self, to the self.’

Bhagavad Gita

When we look at the western approach to Yoga, we may see lots of lycra-clad lovelies, tying themselves up into a pretzel or standing on their heads – it looks impressive and is certainly beautiful to look at, but it is not Yoga (more gymnastics, callisthenics, contortionism, and hypermobility). Seeing this can put many people off trying Yoga and the common thing I hear is ‘I’m just not skinny, fit or flexible enough,’ Yoga is for EVERY body…so, as a wise Yogi once said…

‘Anybody can breathe. Therefore, anybody can practice Yoga.’

T.K.V Desikachar

Read on below...

Your yoga...

Yoga is not about physical postures, standing on your head, tying yourself in knots or expensive leggings and mats – Yoga is your own personal journey of self-development, mind-body connection, healing, building awareness, inner peace, resilience & improving overall health & wellbeing as well as building & serving community. Physical postures are only a small part of a Yoga practice – there are 8 limbs of Yoga, known as the Ashtanga Yoga System, each of which offers guidance on how to live a purposeful & meaningful life. These are the 8 limbs as detailed in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras:

  1. Yama’s – Restraints, moral disciplines, or moral vows (non-violence, truthfulness, non-stealing, right use of energy & non-greed)

  2. Niyama’s – Positive duties or observances (cleanliness, contentment, discipline, self-reflection, surrender to higher power)

  3. Asana – Physical Postures

  4. Pranayama – Breathing techniques.

  5. Pratyahara – Sense withdrawal

  6. Dharana – Focused concentration

  7. Dhyana - Meditation or meditative absorption

  8. Samadhi – Bliss or Enlightenment

So, you can see, Yoga is so much more than just physical movement, it is a way of life, both on and off the mat. It is profound, life-changing, liberating & can bring us greater peace, joy & bliss both within and without.

‘Yoga does not just change the way we see things; it transforms the person who sees.’

B.K.S Iyengar

Benefits of Yoga

Yoga is my passion and has been for most of my life, it has been an incredible tool on my journey of self-discovery & spiritual development. It has helped me process trauma, to connect with and process my emotions, supported my mental & emotional health, kept me fit & healthy & helped me build a close relationship with my body and to go deep within & build my own personal connection with the self and the divine. It has saved my life on many occasions and through sharing & teaching others, Yoga has helped me to hold space & support others on their journey.

I have been so honoured to facilitate & witness so many deep personal transformations over the years, so much connection, healing, growth and life-changing developments have occurred – it never ceases to amaze me, the power of this incredible medicine – through movement, breathwork, mindfulness, sound and stillness – we can find the answers we are looking for, we can connect with our inner strength, resilience, power & divinity to radically transform & heal our lives.

If you are new to Yoga & have yet to feel all its incredible benefits & effects, here are some of the many ways that Yoga may help you…

  • Build strength, flexibility, balance, core-stability & fitness levels. Improve mobility.

  • Improve posture, alignment – supporting healthy backs, joints & bones.

  • Build confidence, self-esteem, resilience & connect to your inner power.

  • Improved focus, concentration & clarity of mind.

  • Alleviate & manage symptoms of stress, fatigue & burnout.

  • Support to alleviate symptoms of anxiety, depression, low mood.

  • Release tension in body, mind & soul – find more ease in movement.

  • Improve overall physical, emotional & mental health & wellbeing.

  • Better pain management, soothe away aches & discomfort.

  • Welcome greater health, better sleep & increased vitality.

  • Cultivate inner peace, stillness, contentment & quieten & calm the mind.

  • Experience deep rest, relaxation, restoration & deep healing.

  • Explore techniques for mindfulness, meditation & relaxation.

  • Support for chronic conditions, pain management & mobility issues.

  • Bring meaning, purpose, connection & community

All you need for a Yoga class is:

  • To wear comfortable clothing i.e., leggings, jogging bottoms, vest, t-shirt, jumpers etc.

  • A drink of water

  • A yoga mat (I have some in the studio if you need to borrow one)

  • Blanket, cushion (available in studio if needed)

  • Something warm to wear for relaxation at the end of class.

What you need
Styles I teach

Styles I teach

I teach mainly traditional Hatha Yoga to adults, teens, children, families & partners. However, I offer a few different styles to suit all levels and abilities…teaching Yoga for EVERY body. I do sometimes bring in other movement-based practices such as Qi Gong, Pilates, Somatics & free expression as well as elements of philosophy, sound healing and most of all, playful exploration of our mind and body in a safe and supportive space an with wonderful community.

  • Hatha Yoga

  • Vinyasa Flow Yoga

  • Restorative Yoga

  • Chair Yoga

  • Beginners Yoga

  • Children, Teens, Family & Partner Yoga

  • Yoga for Women’s Health & Wellbeing

  • Therapeutic Yoga – 1:1 or Group sessions

  • 6 Week Yoga Courses (for specific conditions or levels)

  • Yoga Nidra

  • Meditation & Mindfulness Classes/Courses

If you would like to know more about the styles of Yoga available, please Click Here to learn more about the different styles I teach.

I hope you are able to find what you are looking for here and I hope to see you in a Yoga class soon! If you have any queries or questions, I would love to hear from you!

Much love

Em xxx

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