Updated: Oct 20, 2020
The first of a series of Yoga workshops in Reading are taking place in 2016 and 2017 at studio 42, Reading
Breath Bandhas Drishti
Key aspects of any vinyasa (flow) yoga practice. Explore these 3 ingredients of vinyasa styles of yoga and understand how they relate to the 8 limbs of ashtanga yoga. We will be practicing techniques to utilise during a vinyasa (flow) yoga session which will help deepen your own yoga practice. Create a healthier body through engaging these techniques. Breath control leads to stabilisation of the mind. There will be a focus on the basis of ujjayi pranayama (victorious breath) and how to use this in relation to movement within the practice. There will also be practice techniques in engaging yogic locks (bandhas) in relation to both yoga postures (asana) and breathing (pranayama) techniques. Bandhas help control the energy in the body and can help develop and stronger, lighter practice. We will focus on these locks to become more stable in a posture. Finally by incorporating a focus point to each posture more internal awareness develops. We will be looking at some of the main gazing points (drishtis) and practice their use within a vinyasa practice. The workshop will be mostly a practical session, with room for discussion/exploration of ideas.
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2. Standing series (3 hours)
A hands on practical session to learn the correct alignment principles for standing postures in a vinyasa practice. Practice with modifications to ensure an injury free practice and to continue a yoga practice if injured. Try out some of the variations to common postures to find out which options are best suited to your own practice or how to develop your posture further. We will learn the transitions of the ashtanga vinyasa standing series along with correct breathing, drishti and bandhas to develop a personal self-practice. Try out some vinyasa flow sequences to practice the alignment, modification/variation, transition, bandhas and drishtis. You will be able to move into yoga postures more easily and safely as a result.
3.Rocket Vinyasa 2 arm balances and inversions (3 hours – extendable to 5 hours)
See the world from a different perspective. Learn to defy gravity, build strength and overcome fears through practicing some of the arm balances and inversions of the Rocket Vinyasa 2 series. We spend so much of our time seated or standing in the yoga studio, at home or work isn’t it time to give those legs a rest? Inversions and arm balances not only allow the legs to relax but the shoulders and arms, which are often neglected, are used to make your existing practice challenging but fun. Postures will be explored individually and then linked together for a full or part Rocket 2 sequence. Postures covered are: pincha mayurasana, bakasana, parsva bakasana A, B, eka pada bakasana, galavasana, koundinyasana A, B, astavakrasana, baddha hasta sirsasana A, mukta hasta sirsasana A, B, C. Use this workshop to build your own routine and fly the Rock
4. Seated basics and finishing (3 hours – extendable to 5 hours)
The seated series of the Ashtanga Vinyasa series is known as Yoga Chikitsa (detoxification). Learn the alignment and sequencing of this series of postures. The workshop includes how to modify or vary your own practice to create a safe but challenging yoga flow. Receive relevant adjustments to get the full feel of each posture. This will create a muscle memory when practiced sufficiently, so the body will remember the correct position for each posture. Learn how to finish the vinyasa sequence to cool down the body and slow down the mind for the most effective benefits. There will be a focus on drishti, bandhas as well as modified vinyasas.
5. Pranayama, Yin and Meditation (3 hours- extendable to 5 hours)
Pranayama (control of life force) forms a fundamental part of any yoga practice. Within a vinyasa system it is inherent in the practice itself. However developing a full pranayama practice can help avoid or even cure sicknesses and even create focus when a vinyasa practice cannot be done. It can also deepen awareness leading to meditation. Learn and practice a variety of pranayama techniques including ujjayi with bandhas (locks), nadi shodana, bastrika, surya bhedana, sitali and the unique and illuminating Chitshakti Prakriya. Next we will develop a more aware and meditative mind through a Yin Yoga series. Based on Chinese meridian theory and as a way to strengthen and release connective tissues in the body, we will explore some of the Yin postures in terms of its benefit to cultivate a meditation practice. In itself it Yin Yoga is a great way to calm both body and mind. Longer holds in postures allow body tissues to be worked on which are ignored in a dynamic vinyasa practice. While this develops a quieter practice it is by no means a weaker practice. By practicing some Yin Yoga and moving further towards a quieter mind, we are ready to end the workshop in a meditation practice. It has been often said that meditation is the best medication. We will be using a meditation approach which can allow individuals to overcome personal issues aswell as experience a deep blissful state. This technique has been used in unique settings, but now it is available to you.
6. Yogic Living (diet, cleansing and philosophy) (3 hours)
In this workshop you will be able to explore, discuss and understand the principles of the yogic lifestyle based on sacred texts and experience of proficient yogis. Find out what a yogic diet is and how you can incorporate this into your daily life if you so wish. Practice the cleansing techniques which have been used for thousands of years to purify the body and help avoid sickness/disease. Explore some of the sacred texts and how find out how yoga has evolved. Learn about the 8 limbs of yoga and how they can fit to a yoga class and day to day living. This workshop includes an optional yogic lunch