Yoga is an ancient discipline that uses physical exercises, proper breathing, mental focus and conscious awareness to bring about a harmonious body and mind.
Practiced properly, yoga can help you develop strength and flexibility, release stress, alleviate structural pain (such as knees, back, neck), feel more calm and centered, regain vitality and interest in life.
We offer a range of styles and class levels to suit students ranging from beginners to experienced practitioners and teachers. Yoga is not competitive; students work to their own limitations and flexibility.
One of the hardest things for us is finding time to do the activities that are beneficial to our overall well being. We recommend practicing a minimum of 3 times per week but even if you can only fit one class in a week you will see and feel a noticeable difference.
Although yoga involves stretching your muscles, it is much different than the few warm-up stretches you might do at the gym. Firstly, Yoga places emphasis on alignment, meaning that how you are touching your toes is more important than whether you can actually touch them or not. Most yoga poses are not stretching an isolated area, but rather involve the whole body in both stretching and strengthening.
Contrary to popular belief, you do not need to be a pretzel to be able to do (and benefit from!) yoga. Yoga isn’t about being a contortionist, it’s about stretching, lengthening, strengthening and relaxing–from whatever point you are at.
It is generally recommended not to eat large meals 1-2 hours before class. We do a lot of inversion poses in our classes which may not be very comfortable if you’ve just eaten a large meal. If you do need to eat something just before class we would recommend yogurt, fruit or some nuts.
Yoga can make you look and feel better, regardless of your weight. That said, Yoga can help you slim down in a couple of ways. First, the exercises will help you burn calories. In addition, they’ll help tone your muscles and improve of your posture. Yoga is also about healthy living, which includes a healthy diet. That doesn’t mean you have to become a vegetarian, just that you should be conscious of the foods you eat, sticking with natural, fresh fruits and vegetables, grains, etc. as much as possible while limiting your intake of junk food and foods high in fat, like red meat. Any of the basic hatha styles will help.
Meditation is the intentional, conscious cultivation of attention and awareness, often called mindfulness. The basic idea associated with why people meditate is that during our day we are constantly subjected to sensory input and our minds are always active in the process of thinking. We read the newspaper, study books, write reports, engage in conversation, solve problems, etc . Typically, as we do these normal activities we engage in a constant mental commentary, sort of an inner “The Drama of Me.” Usually people aren’t fully aware of all the mental thought activity that we are constantly engaged in. In many cases these recurring thoughts cause us a great deal of anxiety and stress.
Meditation allows all this activity to settle down, and often results in the mind becoming more peaceful, calm and focused (please see Interesting Articles for more information on what meditation can do for you).