ASHTANGA VINYASA

in the tradition of sri k. pattabhi jois

ASHTANGA VINYASA

in the tradition of
sri k. pattabhi jois

The Ashtanga Vinyasa is designed to purify the body, enhance proper functioning of the digestive system, build physical and mental strength, and foster optimal healing and wellness. Ashtanga yoga utilizes ‘vinyasa’ and ‘tristhana’.
Vinyasa is dynamic movement of postures linked with the breath. For each movement, there is one breath. The purpose of Vinyasa is for internal cleansing.
Tristhana refers to the following 3 places of attention and action:

  • Ujjayi (breath)
  • Dristi (gazing point)
  • Asanas (postures and bandhas)

The 3 components are intricately woven together throughout the entire practice, leading practitioners on the path of self-discovery with complete awareness and presence, transforming the physical asana into a moving meditation. By maintaining these fundamental principles, the Ashtanga practice produces internal heat and a purifying sweat that detoxifies the body and enhances a calm and steady mind.

THE PRACTICE

There are six distinct sequences in the Ashtanga system of yoga: Primary Series (Yoga Chikitsa/Yoga Therapy), Intermediate Series (Nadi Shodana/Nerve Cleansing), and Advanced A series through Advanced D series. For most people, Primary Series is plenty. It is intended to strengthen and purify the body and focus the mind, and in doing so, the Primary Series of Ashtanga can be a lifelong practice that is adaptable for people of all ages. It also serves to prepare for more advanced practices that follow. For those students that have mastered Primary Series, adding Intermediate Series to their practice offers a deeper cleansing of the subtle energies and imposes tremendous physical and mindful challenges. Advanced A-D series are for advanced practitioners of yoga ready to hone their practice, building strength and stability.

FORMATS FOR LEARNING ASHTANGA YOGA

MYSORE STYLE

The Ashtanga Yoga method is built around the ‘Mysore Style’ class, so named because yoga was taught this way in Mysore, India, and continues to be taught this way in traditional Ashtanga Yoga schools around the world. In Mysore, the student is taught a sequence of postures through one-on-one instruction. The teacher guides students with verbal and hands-on adjustments to teach and assist proper vinyasa techniques for each of the asana(s) in the sequence.

The correct movements, breathing, and other aspects of the practice are learned gradually, in a step-by-step process accessible to anyone. This method allows each student time to practice and memorize what they have learned before adding more. Students are able to practice at their own pace while surrounded by the energy and inspiration of other students in the room.

LED CLASS

A led class is just that – led and guided by the teacher in a group setting. The teacher verbally leads the group together through the practice. Led class reinforces the proper vinyasa system – when to inhale and when to exhale as we enter into and out of each posture.
A led class is an important compliment to a regular Mysore practice. It’s an opportunity to ensure that each vinyasa is practiced correctly. Furthermore, a surrender to the teacher’s count and pacing increases internal and external strength and discipline.

HALF PRIMARY

In this beginner’s class, students will learn the basics of a led Ashtanga practice including breath, bandha, drishti, and proper vinyasa count. This class is perfect for anyone new to yoga. Students will be guided through the initial sequence of poses with additional instruction and modifications provided so the practice is accessible to all.

INTRO TO ASHTANGA SERIES

Fundamentals of the Ashtanga yoga practice are taught in a safe and supportive environment. In this beginner’s course, students will learn the technique for breathing and movement, meditative gazing, and internal energy locks. Students will also be guided through the initial sequence of poses. The course reviews the traditions of the Ashtanga yoga system and provides an introduction to the Mysore style of learning. Class size is limited to allow for more individual attention. Class meets once a week at a scheduled time.

BENEFITS OF MYSORE CLASS

  • One-on-one Attention -In Mysore Style, you will get individual attention within a group setting. You are taught by your teacher in the Ashtanga Yoga method at a pace specifically tailored for you, your body, your level of flexibility and strength.
  • Flexible Start Time -Mysore Style is an open practice time, meaning you may come and start your practice anytime between the scheduled hours. Simply leave enough time to finish your practice before the scheduled hours end
  • You can show up when it suits you. As long as you leave enough time to finish your full practice, you can come to Mysore class at any point.
  • You develop a meditative practice by following your own breath. Ashtanga is intended to be a moving meditation. Led classes are a fantastic way to learn about the breath and the vinyasa, but Mysore-style is where you follow your own breath and deepen your focus and meditation skills.
  • Mysore class is for everyone – Mysore class is a wonderful way for individuals at different levels of experience to practice together. With everyone in the room doing their own practice, Mysore class is a great way to encourage each student to work at their full capacity. In addition, if a student has any physical limitations or injuries, the teacher can provide individual instruction on how to approach the practice in a safe manner.
Karen Dubi - Ashtanga Yoga Teacher - New York

“Anyone can practice. Young man can practice. Old man can practice. Very old man can practice. Man who is sick, he can practice. Man who doesn’t have strength can practice. Except lazy people; lazy people can’t practice Ashtanga yoga.”

-Sri K. Pattabhi Jois

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