Jump to:I've never done yoga
No. Yoga can certainly increase flexibility, but it can also serve as strength training and cardiovascular exercise. Imagine holding your body weight on just your arms; that is strength training. Vinyasa yoga is a flow style or fast-paced routine of poses that at times, depending on the instructor's pace, can be comparable to a dance routine like Jazzercise and Zumba.
In addition to the physical fitness aspects, yoga provides tools for mental and emotional wellness, including body and breath awareness.
Yoga can be practiced by ANYONE. There are yoga classes, books, videos, and practices for:
Of course! While yoga has recently become popular among children, brides and mothers-to-be, everyone is welcome!
A classic Type A is impatient, impulsive, and hasty. Sound like anyone you know? Children perhaps need yoga even more than adults because they are often developmentally unprepared for the fast-paced, stressful, overwhelming world they are entering. In addition to combating obesity, yoga can help children self-calm and concentrate. Again, ANYONE can do yoga.
"They say" (you know, "them") that you need 21 sq. feet per student. I think a 4'x7' rectangle (thus 28 sq. ft.) per student is comfortable.
Yoga is not a religion in and of itself. The benefits of yoga can be gained by anyone from any culture or religion. The physical and emotional benefits of yoga are psychological, physiological, and philosophical. Yoga can help you self-calm because of its focus on inhalation and exhalation and the way your body is moved or twisted. Different organs as well as muscles are activated or released, causing physiological results such as increase in production of different chemicals such as neurotransmitters and hormones. The breathing exercises are like those found in Lamaze or some type of psychological therapy; the body, and the mood that it generates, is best with the right amount of oxygen.
While there are some aspects of yoga that could be termed metaphysical, I was referring to the "yamas and niyamas." These philosophical aspects are fairly straightforward ethics rather than dogmatic precepts: Do no harm. Don't steal or covet. Be honest. Be moderate in your expenditure of energy. Try to be clean in mind and body. Try to be committed to your yoga. Try to continue your growth as a person and continue contemplating and studying. Be modest and humble and recognize that there are things greater than yourself. Each of these could be viewed with religious or spiritual overtones, and have, but they can also be viewed as generally good rules to live by. We discuss these more in depth in the blog.
You don't have to, but why wouldn't you want to? Maybe that's just me. In all honesty, I (Adri) will probably discuss Sanskrit terms from time to time, not because it is obligatory for practitioners to know them, but because I am a language nerd. If you are interested in words English inherited via Latin from Sanskrit, boy am I the instructor for you! (If you don't care, tell me to stop.)Back to top
No. Personally, as a Type A personality, it is a practice that causes me to be out of balance and too stressed out, although our Vinyasa Flow instructors sometimes include Power Yoga elements.
No. Bikram Yoga is trademarked and the teacher must learn and follow the set list of 26 copyrighted postures and pay a franchising fee. It is traditionally somewhat militaristic in instruction. The style and business model are not appropriate for what I am trying to accomplish: balancing the turmoil of a Type A lifestyle.
Hot Yoga, a non-copyrighted version, involves poses practiced in a room with increased temperature, usually somewhere between 95 and 105 degrees Farenheit. Some practitioners enjoy the practice because they feel more limber in class. This can often lead students to try things they might not normally try, which can have unintended consequences when they are no longer in a hot room. Also, in the Bay Area, which is often quite warm, increasing the amount of time one spends in the heat is not conducive to a balanced lifestyle.
Not at this time, although there are elements of each in our style of yoga.Back to top
We use a blend of styles, and how they are combined depends on the student's needs. We are strongly based in Iyengar yoga, meaning we use props and focus on proper alignment of the body. However, traditional Iyengar can be a strict environment, and it can also require you to hold a pose for a great length of time. we do sometimes use flows (vinyasa, mentioned under power yoga), which is an influence from traditional Ashtanga. Breath is extremely important, and sometimes we go over where you are looking and the quality of that gaze in a pose, and both of these factors can be associated with other styles as well. We use whatever tools work, regardless of where they came from.
"We use whatever tools work, regardless of whence they came." Noooo, that doesn't sound awkward and clunky at all! Almost all but the most formal of registers allow you to ignore this arbitrary, Latin-based grammar rule. So there. (Note: I don't believe in the Oxford comma either, but years of MLA made me inconsistent. Try to practice grammatical non-attachment.)
When people call Bikram, for instance, type A, they are referring to the yoga being practiced as aggressive and competitive. When I use the phrase "Type A Yoga," I'm referring to the people who are practicing it. Giving a type A person a type A practice is like trying to slow down a fire by flooding it with air and gasoline. This practice is about giving type A people the tools to help them self-calm and balance the pressures of their lives.
Type A is an expression from the 1950s referring to a high strung, aggressive, stressed, competitive personality that was theoretically more likely to experience heart disease. The theory has largely been debunked in clinical circles as overly simplistic, but is still used by many people as a pop psychology term to refer to a personality type. Although scientifically disdained this phrase continues to be popular in society perhaps because our society encourages us to live this way, despite the fact this fast-paced lifestyle is probably slowly killing us.
Our focus on yoga embraces a skeptical, clinical mindset and is designed for those people who might find a more "otherworldly" approach uncomfortable. While aspects of yoga are certainly spiritual, there are enough studies and scientific data to support its benefits at this time to support an informative and somewhat factually based approach. While teachers are strongly encouraged to express their anecdotal and personal experiences, it is the practitioner him- or herself who determines the direction of his or her practice.
Nothing! If you are interested in a style of yoga that we don't offer, or a personality type that fits your needs better, just ask us! We'd be happy to recommend a teacher or studio in the yoga community that will work best for you.Back to top
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