Anahata Yoga ~ The Practice, Class Types, Descriptions and the Do's & Don't's
* ALMOST ALL of our classes will begin and/or end with an "OM" chant and "Namaste" greeting.....
"OM" ~ You may join in or just listen. There are several meanings out there. Traditionally, it is pronounced "AUM" (ah-oh-mm).
This is a great way to center and connect with ourselves as well as with those thwho we practice Yoga with.
"Namaste" ~ The spirit in me honors the spirit in you. There are many translations this is just one of them!
I hope you enjoy this mini Yoga practice video. It is raw and uncut. It is not "perfect".... At one point I think I burped! The practice is not about being "perfect." It is about our intention of breath, meditation, alignment of poses and, most important, the JOY!
These are all part of Hatha Yoga practice; Vinyasa/Flow, Yoga Alignment based classes, Slow pace, Deep Stretch, Yang/Yin, Restore, Gentle, and Beginners classes. These classes are practiced and taught with the 8 limbs of Yoga approach.
Hatha/Sraddha /Yang classes ~ Okay for Beginners to yoga. This class is taught with all levels in mind. Builds up strength, flexibility, body and pose alignment.
Deep Stretch/Restorative/Gentle/Yin classes~ The focus of these classes is on relaxing body and mind. You will hold poses with breath awareness and use props to support deep stretch.
Hatha Flow/Vinyasa classes ~ In these classes you will use synchronized breathing to move through a series of poses that increase blood flow and heart rate, giving you a more cardio aspect. *Challenging for beginners who may not know poses by name.
Beginners Yoga~ Ongoing class focused on the beginning stages of Yoga practice
Kundalini Yoga uses movement, sound current, breath, and meditation to relax and heal your mind and body, thus allowing for spiritual growth. This powerful and effective form of Yoga, as taught by Yogi Bhajan, Ph.D., Master of Kundalini Yoga, is a great way to recharge and strengthen your body and spirit quickly. The benefits of Kundalini are the similar as those of Hatha Yoga Style.
May you be safe in Mind~Body~Heart
YOGA classes can be safely attended by relatively healthy and injury-free beginners. These classes will help you develop the strength, flexibility, breath engagement, and internal awareness necessary for an effective regular yoga practice. Benefits of Hatha Yoga/ Kundalini Yoga include, but are not limited to,...
Increased Flexibility: You are never too old to improve your flexibility. Yoga safely stretches your muscles, thus releasing lactic acid. Lactic acid builds up in the muscles, causing stiffness, tension, pain, and fatigue. Yoga increases the range of motion in your joints. The outcome is a sense of ease and fluidity throughout the body. Yoga also stretches the body's soft tissues, including ligaments and tendons. Good classes for this: Deep Stretch, Yang Yin and Hatha
Increased Strength: Some styles of Yoga are more vigorous than others, such as Vinyasa/Core Vinyasa 1-2 and 2-3 level classes. Yoga classes that focus on more precise alignment of poses, such as Hatha, can provide strength and endurance. Poses like Downward Dog, Plank, and Upward Dog build upper-body strength. Standing poses, especially if held for several moments with long breaths, build strength in your leg muscles. When practiced dynamically and correctly, nearly all yoga poses build core strength in the deep abdominal muscles.
Body Posture: Most standing and sitting poses develop core strength, which helps maintain a healthy spine and makes you more inclined to stand and sit tall. This happens because Yoga increases body awareness, thus heightening our ability to quickly notice when we slouch or slump our shoulders.
Breathing: Yoga teaches us to take deep mindful breaths which improve lung capacity, improve the immune system, and stimulate relaxation of the fight or flight response. "The quality of the breath reflects the amount of vital energy present in the body."
Reduce Stress and Increase Calmness: Even beginners will feel less stressed and more calm after their first class. Yoga uses methods to quiet the constant "mind chatter" that often underlies stress. Yoga's anti-stress benefits are a host of biochemical responses. For example, there is a decrease in catecholamines, the hormones produced by the adrenal glands in response to stress. Lowering levels of hormone neurotransmitters - dopamine, nor-epinephrine, and epinephrine -- creates a feeling of calm. Research also points to a boost in the hormone, oxytocin. Oxytocin is the so-called "trust" and "bonding" hormone that is associated with feeling relaxed and connected to others.
Concentration and Mood: Nearly every Yoga style will have you feeling happier and more centered after the class. Yoga helps us improve focus. This improved focusing ability may be a result of the effects of oxygen on the brain, stemming from the deep breathing associated with Yoga practice. Poses like Tree Pose (standing on one leg) help us to focus on the moment.
1. Yama ~external attitudes for guiding conduct within society (nonviolence, truthfulness, non stealing, truth, noncoveting)
2. Niyama ~ internal attitudes for personal discipline (purity, contentment, selfless service, study of self, could be devotion to God ~ Souce, Universal Consciousness, Oneness)
3. Asana ~ Yoga Postures (physical exercise)
4. Pranayama ~ Regulation of the in and out flow of breath/prana "life-force"
5. Pratyahara ~ Withdrawal of the senses from their objects
6. Dharana~ Contemplation of one's true nature.
7. Dhyana~ Meditation "awareness to a single point of attention is maintained" (using prayer, mantra or affirmation)
8. Samadhi ~ Absorption of the Self "meditation that results in only the essential light of the object remaining - object loses its concrete form.
The Sanskrit word, sankalpa means "will, purpose, or determination."
To make a sankalpa is to set an intention.
The Do's & Don'ts of Yoga Practice
1. DO arrive early - Getting to class about 10 minutes early can help you settle in and align your attitude with the purpose of the class. While you're waiting you can get centered, breathe or just be quiet.
2. DON"T eat for two to three hours before class - if you practice yoga on a full stomach, you might experience cramps, nausea, or vomiting, especially in twists, deep forward folds and inversions. Digesting food also takes energy that can make you lethargic if practicing while digesting meals.
3. DO let your teacher know about injuries or conditions that might affect your practice - If you are injured or tired, skip poses you can't or shouldn't do, or try a modified version.
4. DO create an intention - To help you focus, you might find it helpful to dedicate your practice to a certain intention. This might be to become more aware and understanding, more loving and compassionate, or healthier, stronger, and more skillful. Or it might be for the benefit of a friend, a cause, GOD or even yourself.
5. DON"T bring pagers or cell phones to class - Leave socializing and business outside the studio, so the peace of the practice is not disturbed.
6. DO be quiet - it's great to share a class with people you know, but it can be distracting to yourself and others to have an extended or loud conversation.
7. DO bring a towel - if you sweat a lot, and arrive clean of scents that might be distracting or offend others.
8. DON"T push it - Instead of trying to go as deeply or completely into a pose as others might be able to do, do what you can without straining or injuring yourself. You'll go farther faster if you take a loving attitude toward yourself and work from where you are, not from where you think you should be.
9. DO pick up - and neatly put away any props you use. Put blocks way standing them up on side, roll up straps, and fold the blankets and put back on the shelf in such a way that the next person who uses them picks up the "neat" energy you left behind. (Thank you.)
10. DON"T enter class late -A few minutes is okay, but arriving over 10 minutes late can be very disruptive to the teacher and others. Also avoid leaving early from class.
11. Do take time afterwards to think about what you did in class - so you can retain what you learned. Review the poses you practiced, and note any instructions that particularly made sense. Even if you remember just one thing from each class, you'll soon have a lot of information that can deepen your own personal practice.
Thank you for your consideration,
and enjoy an exceedingly rewarding yoga practice!
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